The Rolla School Board met Thursday, Jan. 4, to recognize service and awards, talk about the upcoming Special Olympic fundraiser, Faculty vs. Fuzz game on Friday, Jan. 12 and facility planning.

The Rolla School Board said goodbye to their 2017 student advisor, Ms. Ashley Barth, at their scheduled meeting on Thursday night, Jan. 4. Barth was recognized for her service over the course of the year. The student advisor is responsible for keeping the board informed of school activities and achievements from a student perspective. Barth was given a certificate and a plaque by Dr. Stratman on behalf of the board.

“I really enjoyed my time here,” she said.

The 2018 student advisor, Daniel King, was later sworn into the position as part of the board’s new business on the agenda.

Just prior, the board gave another recognition and heard a presentation by Rolla Police Department’s Sgt. Tony Lauth.

Connie Shoemaker, Rolla High School art instructor, was recognized for being selected as the Western Region Art Educator by the National Art Education Association.

“I was really surprised because I know it’s pretty stiff competition,” she said to the board. “The Western Region is actually not just 19 states, but territories.” The area designated as the Western Region in terms of the award ranges all the way from Texas to parts of Canada. Shoemaker will travel to Seattle, Wash. to accept the award.

Sgt. Lauth spoke during the portion of the agenda reserved for those wising to speak on items not on the agenda, and thanked the board for supporting the Faculty vs. Fuzz basketball event. As the Region Six coordinator for the Special Olympics, Sgt. Lauth explained organizers wanted to include special athletes and students beyond participating in Special Olympics events.

“Our  (school board and police department) job is to keep our community pushing forward and growing all the time,” he said. “We feel with Special Olympics now, we need to include our special needs students and adults, to try and get them more face time speaking at certain events or being able to just have that feeling of inclusion.

The Faculty vs. Fuzz event, which will take place next Friday, Jan. 12 at 7 p.m., will feature school faculty playing basketball against Rolla police officers. Sgt. Lauth said they will be starting the event with a parade of medals by Special Olympic athletes.

The event will also feature a 50/50 raffle and a three-point shootout. Special athletes and students will also be helping with the event, handing out trophies and walking around greeting guests.

“We’re going to incorporate as many of our special needs athletes as we can,” said Sgt. Lauth.

Sgt. Lauth concluded by saying, “The Rolla Public Schools and the [Rolla] Police Department, work really great together and I’m glad to be able to work with Rolla Public Schools.”

The board also heard an update on the long-range facility planning being conducted by the appointed committee. Between now and April, committee members will be visiting the various district facilities to estimate what needs to updated and improved. The committee will make a final presentation on their findings in May.

Upcoming needs relating to Rolla Technical Institute (RTI) and the Transportation/Maintenance facility were noted. RTI’s facility is 43 years old, and the Transportation/Maintenance faculty is 34 years old.

Finally, the school board continued their discussion of the book “Engage Every Family — Five Simple Principles,” focusing on how to empower families to engage with their students.

The next Rolla School Board meeting will take place Jan. 18.