Board OKs survey for $14,750

Staff Report

The Chilenski Strategy Group of Sunset Hills will conduct a telephone survey of Mehlville School District residents at a cost of $14,750, the Board of Education has decided.

Board members voted unanimously last week to award the contract to the Chilenski Strategy Group for the 500-sample, 15-minute telephone survey.

Board member Mike Heins’ motion to have the Chilen-ski Strategy Group perform the survey was seconded by Rita Diekemper. The completed survey will be used to assist the district’s Long Range Planning Committee in its efforts to present a revised Comprehensive School Im-provement Plan to the Board of Education.

School/Community Relations Director Patrick Wallace told the board that proposals were sought from seven companies and four responded.

Bids ranged from $9,500 for a 300-sample telephone survey to $28,943 for a 500-sample telephone survey. The two lowest bidders for a 500-sample survey were Terrence Jones at $12,800 and the Chilenski Strategy Group at $14,750.

Superintendent Tim Ricker, Deputy Superintendent Jane Reed, South Area Superintendent Keith Klusmeyer and Wallace reviewed the proposals and narrowed them down to two finalists, Wallace said. Reed, Klusmeyer and Wallace then interviewed the two finalists and recommended the board accept the Chilenski Strategy Group’s bid.

The Chilenski Strategy Group recently conducted a 300-sample telephone survey for the Lindbergh School Dis-trict at a cost of $12,400.

In a separate matter Feb. 24, board members voted unanimously to adopt a resolution requesting that funding for the First Steps program “be reinstated effective immediately so that no child will be left behind and not be provided the services they need.”

The First Steps programs offers coordinated services and assistance to young children with special needs and their families. First Steps is designed for children, birth to age 3, who have delayed development or diagnosed conditions that are associated with developmental disabilities.

Gov. Matt Blunt “has proposed eliminating funding for the First Steps program,” the resolution states, and the program “is worth saving because it helps children with disabilities prepare for school with a significant body of research supporting that early education of preschool children in the early years provides great benefits for such children.”