Substitute teacher objects to book in school library
A substitute teacher has questioned the presence of a book in the Marion High School library because of content she finds objectionable.
Linda Kroupa met with the school board Monday and told them that a middle school student told her about Crank, a 2004 novel by Ellen Hopkins. According to a summary of the book Kroupa provided, it depicts teenage drug use and dealing, rape, and attempted suicide.
“This is not what I would read,” Kroupa said. “This is not what I would like a child to read.”
The school board did not act on Kroupa’s concerns during the meeting. Later in the meeting, middle school Principal Missy Stubenhofer said some books aren’t appropriate for all students, but that doesn’t mean they shouldn’t be in the library — what isn’t appropriate for one student could be very appropriate for another. Additionally, parents may request that their children not read specific books without taking them out of the library, Stubenhofer said.
Shortage of National Honor Society members
Kroupa also expressed concern over the small number of students inducted into National Honor Society relative to the size of the school’s honor roll. Membership can be an asset to students when applying to colleges and for scholarships.
High school Principal Tod Gordon said Marion uses a standard of a 3.65 grade point average for a student to qualify, along with other criteria such as leadership, service, and an essay. The 3.65 GPA qualification is higher than the 3.5 minimum the national organization sets. Superintendent Lee Leiker suggested the school could do more to inform students of the qualifications and benefits of membership.
High school English teacher Janet Killough resigned.
Building and improvement projects planned
Leiker told the board he would seek bids for a new bus barn and storage building in Marion, as an alternative to the current situation with the school renting space from the old Saddle Club in Marion and the inconvenience of storing buses in Florence. Leiker’s initial idea is a 3,600-square-foot building north of the current bus building. If completed, the district could then think about selling the building in Florence.
Leiker will also seek bids for refinishing the floor of the Marion Middle School gym. The floor could simply have a new finish put on top, or it could be sanded down to take off old layers of finish, as well as the Warriors logos on the floor to be replaced with Wildcats logos.
TEEN membership renewed
The board voted to sign a new five-year agreement for membership in the Technology Excellence in Education Network, which helps Marion, Hillsboro, Peabody-Burns, Centre, and Herington schools provide distance learning classes, as well as other technology support and teacher in-services.
The board met in closed session with Leiker for 30 minutes to discuss personnel and negotiations. No action was taken on return to open session.
The next regularly scheduled board meeting will be 7 p.m. May 13.