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Learning With OzoBots And Chromebooks


August 22, 2019

The purchase of 32 OzoBots and 300 Chromebooks was approved by the Pottawatomie County Commissioners during its meeting held Monday.

Tecumseh Schools will be getting 32 new OzoBots plus new Electronic Exploration kits also known as circuit boards.

Tecumseh Assistant Superintendent Robert Kinsey said these are “just a few purchases we wanted to make for our STEAM center. We want to continue to grow that for our youngsters.”

Kinsey said the OzoBots are programmable robots and the school planned to order two kits, one for each class at the STEAM center. “Each kit contains 18 programmable robots.”

Kinsey said, “Many of our students, last year, really got into what we call snap circuits but it’s basically electronic circuitry. We ordered the snap circuit junior kits last year. There are a few more of those that we want to order this year. But we also wanted to order the master kit to help continue their growth.” The total purchase of $5,588.16 was approved and will be paid for from the education sales tax money.

McLoud Schools was approved for the purchase of 300 Lenova chromebooks from Two Tree Technologies off of state contract. This $80,325 purchase will also be made with education sales tax money. The chromebooks are to be used at the school’s secondary campus.

Bethel Schools ran into a bit of a snag when they requested the approval of a subscription renewal with Renaissance Learning. Bethel Superintendent Tod Harrison said he had been alternating payments for this item between the school and the county education tax money.

The item was listed as a sole source and was previously approved by the board. But the sole source requires an affidavit be signed off by the District Attorney. Assistant District Attorney Greg Wilson asked for time to verify the sole source information before signing off on the required paperwork. The board agreed and suggested it may meet again next week in a special meeting to look at this item again since the current license expires Aug. 30.

Deputy Scott Hawkins was given approval to pursue two grants. The JAG-LLE Grant “is a new grant that opened today,” said Hawkins. “It’s a maximum award of $10,000, no match.”

Hawkins said they were hoping to use the grant to purchase new body cameras. He said the current cameras are beginning to fail and the company they were purchased through has gone out of business.

The Sheriff’s Office was also given approval to apply for the Edward Byrnes Memorial Grant in conjunction with the Shawnee Police Department. “The total grant is $28,816,” said Hawkins. While Hawkins was not sure exactly how the money would be used, he did say it could be used to supplement the purchase of the body cams and purchase other needed office equipment.

The board approved a resolution for the use of sales tax funds to supplement the cost of the mobile rapid response unit for Pottawatomie County. Dist. 3 Commissioner Eddie Stackhouse said this is the third year for this service. REACT Emergency Medical Services Director Willis Snowden said the response time had improved greatly in the south part of the county.

“Anywhere south of Brooksville Road is getting on scene in five to seven minutes,” said Snowden He said prior to this a response time could take 25 minute response time to Asher, Wanette, places like that. Or more depending on whether the unit came out of Tecumseh or further north. The mobile unit is averaging 30-60 calls a month in the south part of the county. The paramedic rover unit is in the south part of the county during “peak times when all the volunteer firemen are at work.”

The board also approved the purchase of a three-acre plot in Maud, across the road from Dist. 3 current barn. “My little ten acres is busting at the seams,” said Stackhouse. The property currently has a large concrete slab valued at approximately $50,000 and a loading dock. There was a building/barn on the property, but only portions of it remain due to years of wind damage.

Stackhouse said his plans for the property include fencing the property, putting a salt barn on the concrete slab and additional room for equipment storage. Stackhouse said he and the owner had agreed on a $35,000 purchase price and all taxes were up to date on the property.

The board congratulated Environment Deputy Shaun Copelin for being named Environment Deputy of the Year for the second year in a row. They also made mention to the attendees that Deputy Travis Sullivan was named Deputy of the Year.

Just prior to adjourning the board held an executive session to discuss the possible purchase of property at 316 N. Broadway. They then returned to open session and announced no action would be taken.


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