ARIZONA CITY — The Toltec School District board has a vacant seat to fill following the sudden resignation of one of its members.
During its monthly board meeting, Toltec School District Superintendent Denise Rogers recognized Matthew Rice for his time on the governing board.
Rice resigned from the board due to health-related issues after serving for two years.
“He has had some pretty serious health issues lately, which has interfered with his ability to work and fulfill other obligations,” Rogers said. “Due to this, we were not taken by surprise. We continue to pray for his health to be fully restored.”
Pinal County School Superintendent Jill Broussard will select a candidate to fill the open seat until December 2020.
During the meeting, Rogers also announced that the district received nearly a $92,000 National School Lunch Program equipment grant. With the money, Arizona City Elementary School will receive two convection ovens for the cafeteria’s kitchen and Toltec Elementary will also receive two ovens along with a walk-in cooler and two walk-in freezers.
The district is also expecting to receive a new bus from the recent Volkswagen settlement next month. In addition to the new bus that was already granted, the district applied for another one after Pinal County received eight additional buses.
The board also reviewed a bus expansion service, which was approved in June.
According to the open enrollment reports from both schools, Arizona City Elementary has 105 students from the Toltec Elementary School boundary and Toltec Elementary has 35 students from the Arizona City Elementary School boundary.
Of the 105 students at Arizona City Elementary, 40 use the bus-expansion service.
“We may be spending more money than we were spending before on transportation, but we’re still spending less than average across the state,” board President Dennis Callahan said. “Compared to other districts, we’re spending less per student than other districts do on transportation.”
The board discussed the possibility of reducing its instructional time for seventh- and eighth-graders. The school district is currently looking at options to cut back to 1,080 instructional hours, which would be 190 hours over the 890 that Senate Bill 1022 would require if passed.
Rogers presented the board with the idea of having the two schools run on different times. One school would go from 7:30 a.m. to 3 p.m., and the other one would start at 8:15 a.m. and end at 3:45 p.m.
The board approved adding a full-time paraprofessional position to assist in a fourth- and fifth-grade combination class and two fifth-grade classes for the remainder of the school year.