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Spring coach’s pay is decided

The Stratford Board of Education on May 10 voted to pay middle and high school spring sports coaches two thirds of their normal salaries as a token of their appreciation for the jobs they do and to help retain them for the 2021 spring sports season.

The Wisconsin Interscholastic Athletic Association canceled this year’s spring sports season because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Scott Winch, Stratford schools superintendent, told the school board other school districts in the state are paying its spring coaches between a range of one to two thirds of their normal salaries. He said a few school districts in the state have decided to pay its spring coaches their entire salaries.

“My justification for asking the school board to at least approve to pay half of our spring coaches’ salaries is because they do a lot of planning for the season before it begins, there was already one week of track practice before the school closed and also these coaches do a lot of work even during the school year,” Winch said. “Paying the coaches half their salaries would be a good gesture but I think giving them two thirds of their money is treating our coaches they way they should be treated.”

Winch said the other one third of the spring coaches’ salaries would stay in the middle and high school sports programs for athletic facility upgrades such as installing a batting cage outside the third base fence of the softball field, improving the home baseball dugout and the track and field pole vault area and possibly buying new starter blocks for the track runners.

In other school news:

_ The school district hired Ledden Plumbing & Excavating LLC of Auburndale for approximately $36,000 to install pipe under ground to connect the village of Stratford water and pressurized sewer service to the concession stand at Tigers Stadium football field.

Winch said there might be a few additional costs not included in the total bid amount, for example, paying $500 to cap off a water well and possibly some extra electrical work needed inside in the concession stand. He said the school district will pay Star Environmental of Marathon $2,000 to survey the land to make sure it complies with Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources standards. He said the school district sent bid requests to four area companies for the project and received two bids in return.

“The bid the school district received from Ledden Plumbing & Excavating was significantly lower than the other bid we received,” Winch said.

_ The school board approved the retirement of longtime elementary school custodian Sandy Gebelein.

_ the school board agreed to pay Ulrich Bus Co. of Stratford 85 percent of its contracted cost during the month of May while the schools are closed because of the COVID-19 pandemic. The school district will pay the bus company $5,996 for each 11 buses for a total cost of $65,956 in May.

Winch told the school board if Ulrich Bus Co. receives any federal grants, aid or stimulus money then the cost the total school district pays in May would be reimbursed by whatever amount of money it receives.