Fairfield school board received updates at its Dec. 9 meeting on transformational learning, Advanced Opportunity Act funding opportunities, a Steered Straight vaping presentation and a surplus/obsolete equipment sale.

Superintendent Les Meyer explained that the district applied for transformational learning funds through HB 351 with the anticipation of being awarded $32,000 in December or January. The funding didn’t come in for a variety of reasons, he said.

“Fairfield’s application was approved. However, awarding was on a first-come first-serve basis and we were too late in hitting the submit button,” Meyer said. “We are on the waiting list for round two and are in the hopper and will resubmit on Feb. 5.” Through research following the application submittal, Meyer said they were too conservative in their application approach. Meyer said adjustments will be made and the application will be for around $60,000.

During the meeting, Meyer highlighted information on transformational learning and the Montana School Board Association’s Innovation Symposium. The superintendent attended the two days of the symposium where school officials talked about the vision for public education in Montana. “This isn’t a cookie cutter approach to education, but developing the full educational potential of each person,” Meyer said.

Meyer reported that Fairfield school district is spearheading the drive to bring Steered Straight, a vaping presentation, to Teton County. “The schools of Teton County are coming together to address the issue of teen vaping head-on,” he said. The nationally known speaker will present Jan. 7 at both Choteau and Fairfield campuses with Dutton/Brady, Power and Greenfield schools invited. There will also be teacher and staff training along with a parent session. Meyer said the Fairfield High School reAct group has pledged $1,500 to help pay for the speaker.

The board approved the superintendent’s and district clerk’s recommended changes to the petty cash fund and student account CD to meet audit recommendations and provide the best payout for the CD.

Elementary teacher Wanda Brosten and school secretary Terria Arps highlighted their trip to Washington, D.C., to attend the Blue Ribbon Schools award ceremony. They said it was impressive to be recognized along with the other schools receiving the honor. Additionally, they enjoyed several tours while in Washington, D.C.

Elementary Principal Courtney Bake noted changes have been made in the elementary teaching assignments to accommodate for two teachers taking maternity leave during the school year.

She also highlighted the National Day of Coding the elementary students participated in under Dianne Bremer in December.

Dustin Gordon, junior high and high school principal, reported a group of high school students were selected to attend the Montana High School Association AIM Higher program held in Great Falls. Gordon said the Fairfield students represented their school well and will share what they learned with the rest of the student body.

The board approved the sale of surplus/obsolete equipment including car jacks, engine holders, carts and a table. They accepted a bid by Ron Bremer for the floor jack. They did not receive any takers for the encyclopedias, dictionaries, magazines and old textbooks.

The next board meeting will be Jan. 13 at 10 a.m. in the high school media center. The board members will attend lunch at school and will go into executive session for an evaluation of Meyer.