Blog Post

Board ReCap – Tuesday, October 26, 2021

Click here to download a print-friendly PDF of the Board ReCap.

Awards & Recognition

The Kansas City, Kansas Board of Education recognized and honored Blanca Menendez for receiving the 2021 Parent Educator of the Year Award. The award honors parent educators who show outstanding work supporting Parents as Teachers mission.

Ms. Blanca works for the University of Kansas Medical Center. Dr. Michael Lewis, The University of Kansas Physicians Pediatrics said, “She gets to the office very early and is frequently the last person to leave our entire office. Our general pediatric practice sees nearly 20,000 children annually in multiple clinic sites so she’s frequently coordinating with physicians and nurse practitioners across the area. Watching her place so many families as priorities is energizing to our other team members.”

The recognition was submitted by the Director of Parents as Teachers, Jacki Himpel.


Dr. Anna Stubblefield, Superintendent of Schools shared a few topics covering:

  • The hiring of Security Officers,
  • Upcoming Listening and Learning Session dates,
  • National Bullying Prevention Month and Dyslexia Awareness Month
  • KCKPS District celebration of Indigenous People Day,
  • The recruitment of Nutritional Services employees. 

Student of the Month Recognition

The Board of Education recognized several students of the month for their hard work in the classroom. The students for the Month of October are:

  • Wendy Fernandez-Mar, an 11th grade student at Sumner Academy of Arts and Science
  • Oswin Torres-Martinez, a 3rd grade student at Francis Willard Elementary
  • Uriel Sanchez, an 8th grade student at Arrowhead Middle School
  • Elena Felix, Pre-K student at Banneker Elementary School

Employee of the Month

The Kansas City Board of Education recognized Laura Beard, Paraeducator at KCKECC as the Employee of the Month.

Ms. Beard was nominated to receive this employee recognition for her 17 years of dedication to her students and to her team. Her fellow co-workers said, “Laura was assigned more classrooms as a result of paras in our school being moved to other schools within the district. In just the last few weeks, I have seen how Laura has taken that change head-on and is already making strong connections and a positive impact with her new students and new classroom. Her dedication and willingness to always help staff and students, especially with the recent changes in our school, is why I would like to nominate her for EOTM.


Dr. Anna Stubblefield recognized Ms. Wanda Gibbs for 44 years of service with the Nutritional Services department.

She also thanked several community partners for supporting Real-World Learning Day on Wednesday, October 27th. There were several businesses, government agencies, colleges and universities that helped make this day possible for our students:

  • Avila College
  • aSteam Village
  • Boys and Girls Club
  • Children’s Mercy Hospital
  • Donnelly College
  • Johnson County Community College
  • Kansas City, Kansas Community College and the TEC Center
  • Rockhurst University
  • Student Entrepreneur Experience
  • Mayor David Alvey, County Administrator Doug Bach and the Unified Government of Wyandotte County and Kansas City, Kansas
  • US Engineering
  • William Jewell College
  • Mark Dupree and the Wyandotte County District Attorney’s Office
  • The Mahomes Foundation

She also recognized three principals during Principals of the Month for their Re•Bounding, Re•Imagining and Re•Newing efforts – Karl Unger principal at Banneker Elementary, Collette Chaney, principal at Welborn Elementary, and Mary Stewart, principal at Wyandotte High School.

Board President Randy Lopez thanked the Kansas State School for the Blind for hosting KCKPS staff and the school board to discuss how we can partner together in the best interest of our students. 

Board Reports

The Kansas City Teacher Residency Program (KCTR) delivered a presentation to the Board as information only. The presentation provided an overview of the KCTR teacher preparation and development program that focuses on two key things: increasing the number of highly effective educators serving in the Kansas City Metropolitan Area and increasing both diversity and representation in the teaching workforce.

The Executive Director of Equity and Inclusion provided an update on the offices plans for the year 2021. The plan covered the following areas:

  • professional development for administrators, certified and classified employees in equity/efficacy and interpersonal dynamic pedagogy,
  • support for departments in looking at making decisions with diversity, equity and inclusion and all staff feeling as if they belong to KCKPS, and
  • leading trainings, mediations and discussion groups.

The presentation also included areas of accomplishment to date.

Board Updates and Approvals

The Kansas City, Kansas Board of Education approved the Staff COVID-19 testing policy. KCKPS provided in-person and remote options to all of our students for the 2020-2021 school year.  As we have returned to full in-person learning in August 2021, we have seen the number of quarantined staff and students fluctuate as we have returned to school.  Sample policies were presented to the Board of Education, and we have adopted a Staff COVID-19 testing policy.

The Board of Education approved the contract, with the required Da146a form attached, for the selection of FinalSite for the design, implementation, and annual software subscription to upgrade of the District’s website for the 2021-2022 school year.

The Board of Education approved the Agreement with University of Kansas Center for Research, Inc. to conduct an environmental scan/academic review in the amount of $65,000. The environmental scan/academic review proposed by the University of Kansas Center for Research, Inc. will provide an understanding of the scope of the academic structure and operation, curricular components, current reform efforts, climate issues, communication and use of data focusing on the efficiency and effectiveness of operation.

The Board of Education approved the ESSER II Funds allocation for year three. Over the next three years, the district will receive additional funding to assist in matters related to the impact of COVID-19 and the learning loss of students.

The district would like to extend all possible resources and opportunities for our students to address any learning loss as a result of COVID-19, as well as provide any necessary items to keep our students safe and healthy.

Posted Friday, October 29, 2021


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