The Union R-XI School Board approved a number of business items at its monthly meeting last Wednesday, Sept. 18. 

Technology Coordinator Matt Jones has been in charge with selecting a company to install access controls throughout the district’s Prop Wildcats construction projects. The technology has to do with access to the buildings.

“As we made this decision there is only one bid in front of you because we are pursuing this system as a sole source so that we would only be managing one system for control instead of having multiple systems,” Jones said.

The board approved the bid for the new administrative building.

“We already have this system at Beaufort,” Jones explained. “We will work to install it at the new elementary, and we will work to retrofit it at the remaining buildings over the next 12-18 months, whatever we deem necessary.”

The bid was won by Tech Electronics, a commercial communications systems provider based in St. Louis. The bid is $16,881.00 for materials and labor.

Currently, the technology staff is working with two systems, while the new system is being installed.

Grant Opportunity

Beaufort Elementary Principal Kendra Fennessey is working with Early Childhood Coordinator Meg Vogel on securing a Missouri Department of Elementary & Secondary Education (DESE) competitive grant. It is out of the Early Childhood Care Development Fund.

“It would be awarded per site,” Fennessey said. “It’s three years, and we are able to apply each year to do a year at a time. The main goal . . .  is to extend availability and quality of preschools.”

Fennessey said the district would use the grant for added supplies, but also to extend the preschool’s hours of operations.

“Right now we have a pickup at 3:30 p.m. and that’s hard for working parents,” Fennessey said. “If we could extend with these funds to offer 6 p.m. pickup that would help a lot of our families.”

The district will have to show its progression through licensure and accreditation.

New Positions

The board also approved two new positions at the meeting.

A four-hour bus driver is needed for a new bus route added to Beaufort Elementary.

Dr. Justin Tarte, executive director of human resources, said that with more kids entering the district, the extra bus route was needed.

The board also approved an eight-hour early childhood special educational paraprofessional. Vogel said that the Early Childhood Center has experienced an increase in enrollment, so the position was needed.


The school board also approved a three-year deal with Pepsi. The soda provider’s three-year deal ended, and the district received bids from them and Coca-Cola.

Assistant Superintendent Dr. Mike Mabe said the pricing was better from Pepsi, as well as the district’s commission.


Spencer Michelson

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