USD 489 BOE reviews policy changes, including Title IX updates


Tiger Media Network 

Superintendent Ron Wilson gave an overview of recommended policy changes per the Kansas Association of School Boards during Monday’s USD 489 Board of Education meeting. 

This was a first reading of the policies that will be voted on at the next board meeting on July 15. The policies up for review were not in the published agenda on Board Docs, but Wilson briefly summarized some of the key policy changes. 

Policy EE removes the ability for the district to provide meals for remote learners. The policy was initially enacted during the COVID-19 pandemic when all students were learning remotely, however, now that in-person classes have resumed, the district cannot serve remote learners. 

“This policy is just removing that piece that was added during COVID,” Wilson said. 

Policy JGEC addresses new Title IX regulations that will go into effect in August. Wilson said the policy prohibits the district from discriminating against students for “sexual orientation or things of that nature”. 

Policy JH allows virtual students to participate in extracurricular activities. Previously, students were required to attend a certain number of in-person classes. The legislature amended this last year and this policy change puts that amendment in writing. 

General Counsel Bill Jeter noted that 26 states including Kansas have filed lawsuits in federal court questioning the constitutionality of the Title IX changes. 

“There could be a possibility that something may develop as far as Kansas is concerned with enforcing those regulations,” Jeter said. “That’s up in the air at this point.”

Jeter noted that besides the debate on Title IX, the other policy just adapted the current policies to match existing state or federal laws. 

Board Member Derek Yarmer asked if the new Title IX regulations include gender identity and if that means biological males identifying as females would be allowed in female locker rooms. 

“There’s a lot of litigation and interpretation of these regulations,” Jeter said.

Jeter said that the policies are from KSB and questions about implementation should be directed towards them. 

Board Member Megan Zampirri-Lillpop said through her work with Options Domestic and Sexual Violence Services, a staff member conducts Title IX training. 

“Generally, it is making sure that opportunities are available to all students and people,” Zampieri-Lillpop said. 

Jeter did note that barring changes at the federal level, the policy would need to be adopted before August 1st to comply with federal law. 

Board President Ken Brooks said that when voting on the policies at the next board meeting, members can request to vote on certain policies separately if they would like. 

Other meeting items included:

  • An update on the Bond Construction at Roosevelt and Hays High School
  • Approval of a two-year lease at the Hadley Center for Hays Virtual School
  • Approval of 2024-2025 Board of Education meeting schedule
  • Approval of the Master Agreements that were tentatively reached between HNEA and USD 489 BOE Negotiations Team
  • Approval of wage increase for classified employees
  • Approval of salary increase Licensed Classified Personnel at 4.16% and approved salary increase administrators and directors at 3.5%.

The next board meeting will be at 6:30 p.m. on July 15 in the Toepfer Board Room.