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12/6/2017
School work session all about ideas

By ZACHARY HALASCHAK
Daily News Staff Writer

Wednesday’s Ketchikan School Board meeting is not a typical meeting — it is an informal work session.

The work session, which is an annual event, is open to the public and will be held at the Ketchikan High School Library.

The agenda for the work session is also very different from normal School Board meeting agendas. The agenda is broken down into three sections: Instruction, environmental and community.

Within those three subcategories are a number of issues, policies and procedures relating to the operation of the school district. The topics of discussion range from “report cards” to “snow days.”

Superintendent Bob Boyle said that many of the topics slated to be discussed are not necessarily changes or proposals, but rather, points of discussion where both the public and the School Board can offer up thoughts and ideas.

“It’s just so people can say, ‘What kind of ideas do you have?’” Boyle said, “and we just throw them out there. We don’t take minutes during a work session, that’s how informal it is. … That’s so that people can have a conversation.”

Boyle said that the budget would be the “overarching conversation” at Wednesday’s work session. He noted that many of the points listed on the agenda were more informative in nature, but in the end all relate back in some way to the budget.

“A lot of it is informational and short, there’s not a whole lot of meat to it, but the big-dog type of thing would be budget preparation,” Boyle noted. “That’s what the (School) Board does a lot of so were going to have a lot of (discussion) that will come back around to the budget.”

Boyle said that by holding the meeting at Kayhi, he hopes to create an environment of open and constructive discussion during the meeting, which consequentially, could bring about ideas for future changes or proposals at subsequent School Board meetings

“We’re having it at Kayhi so that it has more informal rules of conversation, and people can sit at the table with the (School) Board,” Boyle said. “And we sit around a table so we can all talk with each other.”

Boyle encouraged the public to attend the work session, which he said is crucial because that is where a lot of the ideas are generated. He said that those who attend will have to opportunity to be heard in a relaxed environment.

“It’s very open to the public,” Boyle said. “We encourage the public to come, that’s where we’ll get ideas from.”

“Every now and then, we’ve only had a few people come and we invited them right to the table and they sat with the School Board and talked with us, so the public is welcome,” Boyle later added.

Wednesday’s work session will be held at 5:30 p.m. at the Ketchikan High School Library.