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posted: 2/22/2014 8:00 AM

Kaneland board to talk lunches, staffing, computers

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The Kaneland school board Monday will discuss whether to add more teachers to the middle school to lower class sizes as it prepares the 2014-15 budget.

The meeting is at 7 p.m. at Harter Middle School, Harter Road and Esker Drive, Sugar Grove.

To reduce class sizes at the middle school to 30 or fewer students on average, the district would have to add the equivalent of one full-time teacher to the seventh grade, according to a memo to the board. To have an average of 28 or fewer students it would need to add two seventh-grade teachers and one each for sixth and eighth grades. For an average of 26 or fewer students it would have to add six full-time teachers.

The board will also discuss two options for putting personal computing devices, including iPads and Chromebooks, in students' hands. The first option, buying 679 devices, would cost $225,000 and have three students sharing a device.

The second, at 1,429 devices, would cost $487,000. Either way, the administration is suggesting the purchase be phased in over two years.

The board is also scheduled to discuss hot lunches in the elementary schools.

The district would need 75 percent of students to participate at a lunch price of $2.25 a day to break even. To recoup the estimated $110,000 startup cost would probably mean raising the price to $2.50 per lunch, according to a board memo. If doing so resulted in only 60 percent of students participating, it would take up to 11 years for the district to recover the startup cost.

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