GIFFORD — Gifford Grade School’s property tax levy is projected to increase 9 percent in 2019 over the previous year.

The district’s taxable assessed valuation is forecast to climb to $53.331 million — an increase of $3.729 million over 2018.

A tentative tax levy has been set at $1.406 million for a tax rate of $2.6366 per $100 EAV, bringing in an additional $116,107.

Because the increase is more than 5 percent, a truth-in-taxation hearing will be held at 5:25 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 18, at the school. Members of the public may comment on the proposed levy.

Since 1994, the property tax extension limitation law has enforced a tax cap so that rates are limited to changes in the consumer price index, and annual increases cannot exceed 5 percent without having a truth-in-taxation hearing.

The levy was discussed at the November meeting of the school board.

The board also reviewed the school’s state report card.

An overview of the 183 students showed 92 percent white, 1 percent black, 7 percent two or more races, 31 percent low-income 11 percent IEPS (individual education plans for special education) and 2 percent homeless.

The school had a 45 percent proficiency rate in English language arts, 36 percent in math and 72 percent in science.

In a 5Essentials Survey that allows students in grades 6-12 and all teachers to provide their perspective on essential conditions for learning, the school scored “average” in the areas of effective leaders, collaborative teachers and involved families and “more” (above average) in the areas of ambitious instruction and supportive environment.

Leaking roof

In the facilities report, the board learned there are leaks in the new gymnasium in the same spots as the past few years.

The issues arise when the wind blows from the east. Some caulking on the roof has been done by a contractor, but no specific area can be found that is causing the leaks. Smith said there is a guttering issue with the north wall, and it becomes an issues during freezing and thawing.

Superintendent Jay Smith said he is in the process of asking a few local construction workers for their opinions on whether the problem can be fixed by the district or whether a contractor will need to repair the issue.

Parent-teacher conferences were held for K-5 on Oct. 29 and 30. A total of 17 out of 18 kindergarten parents attended, 11 of 11 first grade, 15 of 16 third grade, 25 of 26 fourth grade and 20 of 23 fifth grade.

An awards assembly was held Oct. 25.

There were 46 students who had perfect attendance for the first quarter grading period.

Principal Pride winners were Bennett Huls, Hannagan Youmans, Zaniyah Bunch, Kade Pruiett, Mackinzie Rodgers, Kaira O’Sullivan, Lainey Ehler, Charlie Huls, Hadley Pruiett, Aubree Rosentiel, Josie Roseman, Blayton Marshall and Makenna Cravens. The winners played Hungry Hippo, sponsored by the Positive Behavior Team.

Landon Freeman was named the eighth-grade student of the quarter.

A Veterans Day assembly was held Nov. 11.

dhinton@rantoulpress.com