by nathan oster
The hiring of a new ag teacher, a statewide proposal that would have a dramatic impact on the high school wrestling program and the surprise resignation of an administrator highlighted the Jan. 9 meeting of the Big Horn County School District No. 3 board of trustees.
Before moving into an executive session that would last for more than two hours, the board heard from Ty Flock, the principal at Greybull High School and the man coordinating the search for a new agriculture teacher.
The district is hoping to launch the program in the fall of this year. For that to happen, it is moving quickly to find the right person. Flock said that as of the night of the meeting, six candidates had applied for the vacancy. One has “five to six years” of teaching experience, while two others have one year of experience.
“We’re looking at setting interviews for the end of the month,” he said.
Joining him on the interview committee are GMS Principal Joel Rogers, 4-H Educator Gretchen Gasvoda, Brenda Miller, industrial arts teacher Ralph Wensky, and journalism/librarian Lynn Forcella.
Flock said he feels “pretty confident” that the district has a good field of candidates from which to choose.
A proposal currently before the Wyoming High School Activities Association that originally surfaced in cross-country could have a significant effect on another sport where combined teams are common, that being wrestling.
Flock said the proposal would chance the way enrollments are calculated for combined teams. Right now, the Greybull-Riverside program can qualify as a 2A school because the calculation adds the enrollment of the home school, Riverside, with the male enrollment of GHS. The proposal on the floor now would require merged programs to use the school with the highest enrollment as the home school.
“If we did that, it would bump us up to 3A,” said Flock.
That would leave the district with a choice: move up to the 3A ranks, joining the likes of Powell, Douglas and Star Valley, or split with Riverside and go back to simply having a GHS wrestling team.
This year, there is only one student from RHS on the team: freshman Tate Clutter.
The proposal would also establish an equal number of teams across the three wrestling classifications: 16 in 4A, 16 in 3A and 16 in 2A. If Greybull-Riverside were to go up to 3A, it would be the smallest program in the classification, said Flock.
At this point, all of this is only a proposal. It’ll be up for first reading at the Northwest District meeting on Jan. 24. If it passes through the districts, it’ll go before the WHSAA board for a vote in February, then again in April. It could be in effect as early as the 2018-19 school year, Flock said.
GES principal resigns
Greybull Elementary School will have a new principal next year. Brett Suiter, in his fourth year in that role at the school, submitted his resignation prior to the meeting, and after a brief discussion, it was accepted by the board.
In a letter, Suiter did not cite a reason, saying only, “It’s been a great four years” serving the district and that he intends to “seek jobs elsewhere to continue (his) career as an administrator.”
Supt. Barry Bryant said Suiter did great things at GES and will be missed, sentiments that were echoed by several board members.
In other Jan. 9 news:
- In his report to the board, Suiter touched on the LEGO Challenge that will kick off at the end of January. The theme this year will focus on objects in the town of Greybull.
- GMS Principal Joel Rogers said Greybull will be the site of a History Day competition on March 14 and that judges are desperately needed to pull it off. Mrs. Stebner, who is organizing the event, needs about 20.
Rogers said Mrs. Thon, who teachers science at GMS, has been talking to him about incorporating beekeeping basics into her curriculum as an exploratory class.
- Director of Special Services Lee Clucas said the number of students receiving special services is “slowly going up.” District wide, there are 85 students receiving services.
- Scott McBride, the director of curriculum and grants, spoke to the board about the district’s impending move to standards based grading. He and other administrators have already decided that more time is needed for the transition. The earliest the switch could occur now is the 2019-20 school year.
- Supt. Barry Bryant said Big Horn Federal raised interest rates on school accounts to .65 and also donated a check for $250 to the GHS Spanish Club, which helped out at the bank’s Christmas dinner in December.
- Madi Edeler was hired as a paraprofessional at the middle school.
- The March meeting of the school board was moved to the 22nd of the month at 7 p.m.
- Cheri Edeler urged the board to better define the responsibilities of its various committees during the board discussion part of the meeting.