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Superintendent Press Release October 13, 2023

Dear Cedar Bluffs Families,

The Economic Development Committee is still looking for anyone who might have land, a lot, or somewhere in Cedar Bluffs to build a home. I have a builder ready to build, he just needs land to start putting up houses. If you know of anyone that wants to sell land, please give the school a call. Our economic development committee is working with the village to look at Tax Increment Financing, which would allow builders incentives to build homes and businesses in our community. We have heard from multiple sources that affordable housing is a huge need in Cedar Bluffs and from a school’s point of view, we would love to see more of our teachers living in our community. When I moved her 12 years ago, I had a difficult time finding a home in our district and that is still true today. Another idea from our Economic Development committee is exploring the idea of starting an investment club. So, if we had 100 people invest $1000 a piece, that gives us $100,000 to go to the bank and borrow the rest to build a home – then once it is sold and the bank loan is paid; the investors would split the profits. In studying investment clubs, I have seen investment returns as strong as 28% and low as 5% with an average annualized geometric return of 14.1%. More to come on that at a later date.

As I promised, we have submitted a proposal to the Nebraska Schools Athletic Association that would allow students to compete in more than one NSAA sport during the same season. We have also asked that other schools from other regions also submit this legislation because our region is predominately class B schools and larger that have no issue with having enough kids to participate. Mr. Johnson, who was our English teacher last year and is now a principal in Stapleton is taking the proposal to his regional meeting, as well Jon Cerny from Bancroft-Rosalie will be submitting a like proposal. If this policy is adopted by the NSAA, it will begin next year.

Cedar Bluffs Personnel Committee of the board of education is meeting with our Cedar Bluffs Education Association working out a new 2-year contract for our teachers. It is amazing how the pandemic has changed hiring, changed the needs and desires of employees and we need to start thinking outside the box if we want to compete not only other schools, but other employers. Many employers are still allowing staff to work from home as they have seen a rise in production by working from home. Of course, I could never see working from home as a public school teacher but I am amazed by how many teachers teach online courses as a second job. There are many companies hiring teachers online and the pay is attractive. So, we need to be competitive. Furthermore, there has been a shift over the past 20 years in what employee’s value, moving from monetary desires to workplace satisfaction. It is quite a shift from when I started, you basically did whatever you were told and more to make extra money and even if you didn’t like where you worked or what you did for a living, it was just what you did and you never really thought about changing jobs. Now, the average tenure of an employee in the United States is 4.3 years for men and 3.8 years for women. It led me to look at our average tenure of teachers at Cedar Bluffs and as a teaching staff we average 7.05 years. Of course, you have some teachers who have been her for 30 or 40 plus years and then our six new staff this year make all of that average out but for the most part during our meetings, the teaches seem appreciated and supported. Our satisfaction surveys we do with our staff have always resulted in high scores. Have a great weekend!- Wildcat Pride!