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Local

Minooka high school board talks lacrosse joining IHSA, approves $700 daily cap for officials

MINOOKA – The Minooka Lacrosse Corp. is one step closer to becoming an official Illinois High School Association sport, after Minooka Community High School District 111 board members learned that administrators are in the process of gathering information on the changeover.

Last year, the IHSA board announced that the nonprofit with more than 800 member high schools would debut its boys’ and girls’ lacrosse state series in spring 2018.

“The addition of lacrosse builds on the IHSA mission of offering a wide range of participation opportunities for high school students in Illinois,” a statement on the IHSA website states.

Two of the Minooka teams’ board members, Vanessa Holloway and Jen Holmes, attended the school board’s Friday’s meeting to learn more. They asked about the timetable of becoming an IHSA sport so they could start planning for next year’s season.

Holloway said the boys’ and girls’ teams begin their playing season in March, but planning usually starts in November.

Assistant Superintendent of Business John Troy said the board might be ready to vote on the matter this summer and have information ready for parents in the fall for IHSA participation during the 2017-18 school year.

Holloway said there are 110 players on the Minooka lacrosse teams this year. New uniforms also were purchased for the athletes this year.

The school board Friday also adopted a resolution placing a limit of $700 a day that board members and staff attending school-related meetings may spend. Any more would have to be approved by the board. The expenses include travel, meals and lodging, which must be supported with documentation.

The resolution is effective immediately.

The board debated the maximum amount at its last meeting, when it decided a suggested limit of $800 was too much and asked staff to take a look at what their previous expenses were for attending such meetings as the Illinois Association of School Boards, the Illinois Association of School Administrators and the Illinois Association of School Business Officials.

The board also discussed when a school nurse must travel with student groups for overnight trips. When students need medications for more than one day, administrators said, the medicine must be dispensed by staff. This includes prescription and over-the-counter drugs.

If a nurse is unavailable, a staff member who has a “Type 75 Illinois Administrative Certificate” or a volunteer staff member can dispense the medication. People who are not high school staff members may not distribute medications to students.

Board President Mike Brozovich said a protocol needs to be written and put in place that defines specifically when nurses or other appropriate staff are required at overnight trips and how many. Board member Chris Kobe recommended a nurse be hired when insulin injections are needed for students who cannot self-administer.

The board plans on making that decision at its April meeting.

Also Friday, the board approved allowing Superintendent Kenneth Lee to engage in a strategic planning proposal with the Consortium for Educational Change at an amount not to exceed $15,000 plus travel.

After the meeting, Lee explained that the consortium is a nonprofit that helps school districts identify their strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats and to work with administrative teams to set goals for their five-year plans.

The school board also approved increasing parking fees by $5 next school year, from $125 to $130. All other student fees will remain the same.

Robert “Smitty” Smith was also recognized by the board for his 38 years as a district bus driver. Smith is retiring and moving to Indiana.

Also approved were some changes in April’s school board meetings. The scheduled April 6 meeting is canceled, and the scheduled April 20 meeting has been moved to April 27.

Board member Wendi Arlis was absent from Friday’s meeting.

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