Education, Sports Zone

Board discusses cybersecurity, tennis coach stipend

Lane Education Service District Assistant Superintendent Carol Knobbe presents changes to the Lane ESD local service plan to the Creswell School Board at the Feb. 12 school board meeting. Aliya Hall/The Chronicle

CRESWELL – Representatives from the Lane Education Service District (Lane ESD) presented at the Feb. 12 school board meeting to explain two additions to the 2019-21 local service plan.
Carol Knobbe, Lane Education Service District assistant superintendent, explained to the board that Lane ESD will be adding librarian/media services as well as upgrades to its cyber security.
”We wanted to invest in a position that would take care of that and help districts come up with a plan,” Knobbe said. ”All kinds of things are coming up and we need to be prepared for that.”
Recently, Lane ESD received an email from someone impersonating its superintendent, asking for a new bank account. Board director Lacey Risdal said there was also an issue last summer when multiple school districts were shut down by cyber attacks, and she wanted to know if this plan will help prevent that.
Knobbe explained that the cyber security staff will work with the district to conduct an audit to develop what improvements or enhancements can be made to the district.
”Sometimes it’s about old, outdated equipment and sometimes it’s needing new software,” she said.
While cyber security is included in the core technology package, the librarian/media services are rented by the district. Superintendent Mike Johnson said that he requested it because the district wasn’t in compliance with having a licensed professional and it’s a ”great help to all districts who have that need.”
Knobbe added that districts have historically done without that specialist or skipped services because it was hard to borrow or contract those services and said that this is an exciting opportunity.
Board director Debi Wilkerson motioned to approve the Lane ESD Local Service Plan for 2019-21 and Board director Kandice Lemhouse Worsham seconded it; the motion was approved unanimously.
The board also discussed giving the high school head boys’ and girls’ varsity tennis coach a stipend for coaching, which is currently done for all other programs throughout the school. Brandon Standridge, high school athletic director, wrote a letter to the school board asking for this consideration.
At the moment, tennis is the only program that competes at the Oregon School Activities Association (OSAA) level that doesn’t provide a stipend to its head coach. It’s the district’s third year having the sport and there are roughly 18 students on the team.
”It feels necessary to show that we’re going to support that program and the growth of that program,” Standridge said.
The stipend would not be going towards travel, and Board director Lacey Risdal asked how the students are being transported. High School Principal Adam Watkins said that the students signed a waiver so coaches and parents can transport the players to matches.
”If you want to give us more money, we won’t say no,” Watkins said, receiving a laugh from the room. ”We want to transport kids the safest way possible, but we have been making do without it.”
If approved, the board would have a meeting with the labor union before the stipend is granted. The board will vote on the stipend at their next meeting, and the directors will be given more information on what the cost would be to transport all teams on buses before deciding if they want to fund that.
”It’s part of a larger conversation,” Lemhouse Worsham agreed. ”It comes full circle with fully paying our coaches. It goes hand in hand.”
The next board meeting will be on March 11; the public is encouraged to attend.



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