Norman Public Schools’ Board of Education hired two new administrators, voted to slightly raise school lunch prices and saw the final stages of plans for a new Dimensions Academy at a virtual meeting Monday evening.
After an executive session toward the end of its May 18 meeting, the board voted to hire Amanda Kordeliski as the district’s new director of libraries and instructional technology and Jamie Rentzel as NPS’ curriculum math coordinator.
Kordeliski comes from Norman North High School, where she is school librarian, while Rentzel, NPS’ 2017 teacher of the year, is a math teacher at Norman High School.
The board also voted to raise school lunch prices by 10 cents Monday, an action NPS chief financial officer Brenda Burkett said is necessary for compliance with federal requirements. Burkett said that in order for NPS to stay in line with the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act — federal legislation that supports funding for school lunches and other nutrition programs — Norman has had to raise its school lunch prices by a dime every year for the last few years.
School lunch prices will move from $2.70 to $2.80 at the elementary level and $2.85 to $2.95 at the secondary level. The district does offer free and reduced lunches during the school year, and is also continuing its free meal pickup program that started during distance learning (more details on pickup are available at the district’s site).
Among several bond project updates and contract awards Monday evening, board members heard an update on some of the final phases of the work at Dimensions Academy, where a new facility should be ready by the end of June.
Eric Fleske with Fleske Holding showed the board renderings and construction site pictures of the new Dimensions facility, a nearly 30,000-square-foot preexisting building that the district has gutted and renovated. The school will also get a brand new gym facility on the new Dimensions campus.
The renovated building will house all Dimensions student and faculty under one roof, and will be home to a large commercial kitchen with an adjoined food pantry, counseling, music and art spaces and a mock apartment space to teach life skills, among other features.
At the old Dimensions buildings, Fleske said, technology and facilities were old, the district faced maintenance issues and the facilities offered no onsite kitchen or food prep space. The new central building space should be ready by June 30, while the gym should be done by or before Dec. 31.
While district superintendent Nick Migliorino did not offer any further details on in-person graduation ceremonies Monday, he did remind the board that this week, Norman’s high schools will honor their seniors with virtual ceremonies.
Norman North will broadcast a virtual ceremony at 7 p.m. May 21, while Norman High will share its ceremony at 7 p.m. May 22. Both will be available at the district’s Facebook and YouTube pages at that time.
Migliorino has noted that the district is close to securing a date for an in-person ceremony at the Lloyd Noble Center in early August, but no specifics have been released.
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