Board Excellence Newsletter - Summer 2014
Information for Local K-State Research and Extension Board Members
Volume IV, Issue 3 — Summer 2014
From the Associate Director
“No really worthwhile undertaking has ever been carried to a successful completion without careful and definite plans being made in advance.”
This statement from the Extension Workers Code is as relevant today as it was in 1922 when T.J. Talbert, an extension professional, wrote it.
During the next few months, extension agents will outline their program action plans for the coming year. They will also prepare their Impact/Outcome Reports, Professional Development Plan, and Performance Review. We believe local review, discussion, and input through the board and program development committees are essential for exciting, focused, and relevant extension programming.
Another T.J. Talbert quote from 1922: “It is better to specialize on a few problems, making them an outstanding success, than to spread out over the whole field of extension work ...”
Thanks for your commitment as board members in helping to identify those critical issues where local extension programming will make a difference.
— Daryl D. Buchholz, email@example.com
4-H Volunteer Screening Process Update
4-H Youth Development is the largest organization of its type in Kansas and across the nation. As a leader, the organization must conduct the most effective strategies and practices in positive youth development, including volunteer screening and selection.
As announced in October 2013, Kansas 4-H will implement an updated 4-H Volunteer Screening process starting August 1, 2014.
This process will include an application form, reference check, interview, criminal background check, and orientation. Because the local extension board is accountable for the volunteers, the final step in the process is the board’s approval and appointment of
For additional information see: http://www.kansas4-h.org/resources/volunteers/volunteer-screening-resources/
Three More Counties Join Districts
Effective July 1, 2014, 45 Kansas counties have joined to form 16 extension districts. Anderson County has joined the Frontier Extension District and Linn and Miami counties have completed the process to become Marais des Cygnes Extension District #16.
Congratulations to the staff and board members of these three counties, and to the existing Frontier Extension District staff and board, for their efforts to strengthen the sustainability, efficiency, and effectiveness of K-State Research and Extension in their units.
For more information about Kansas Extension Districts, please visit the K-State Research and Extension Board Leadership Website.
Great news! Kansas 4-H enrollment figures show an increase in the total number of members across the state — the first increase since 2009. Comparing local unit membership data from 2012 to 2013, 62 percent of units showed an increase in enrollment numbers. We attribute the increase to a number of factors, including the launch of the Life’s Little Questions recruiting campaign, combined with more efforts from local units to reach young people and their parents at the beginning of the school year.
The Life’s Little Questions campaign was kicked off at the 2011 Kansas State Fair. The two key messages of the campaign are “4-H is a network of families that grows great kids” and “It’s for city and town folks too.” The campaign encouraged interested families to visit JoinKansas4-H.org, and it worked! The total number of inquiries increased in 2013.
August continues as the month with the highest number of inquiries, indicating that parents are looking for information on youth activities for their kids at the start of the new school year. The units that receive most inquiries include Sedgwick, Johnson, Riley, Wyandotte, and Butler counties.
Involve Residents in PDC Membership
The local extension program is a partnership of K-State Research and Extension and county or district residents. Interested residents can become active partners by serving as members of a program development committee. Preferred qualities of effective committee members include commitment to the mission of K-State Research and Extension, vision, dependability, community spirit, and motivation.
Recruiting Board and PDC Members, a module on the Board Leadership website, helps guide the process of recruiting potential PDC members.
The steps in recruiting include:
- List characteristics desired in future members.
- Determine local groups or audiences where potential members might be recruited.
- Brainstorm names of possible nominees.
- Decide who will contact potential nominees.
- Contact those individuals, describe PDC and board responsibilities, and ask nominees to complete the “Consent to be Nominated” form.
The module is available on the Board Leadership website.
Consider Electronic Funds Transfer and Direct Deposit of Employee Paychecks
Local extension boards can utilize electronic fund transfers to pay bills and to direct-deposit paychecks into employees’ bank accounts.
These alternatives to issuing and getting signatures on a warrant check can provide more flexibility and efficiency in meeting some expense obligations. The approval process is the same as for that for issuing a warrant check.
Individuals and families are taking up vegetable, fruit, or herb gardening to improve their diets, trim grocery budgets, or gain an enjoyable hobby. In addition, community gardens are being established in new locations around the state to provide access to locally grown food as well as the benefits of gardening.
The surging interest in food grown locally provides producers with opportunities to meet the rising demand. More than 110 farmers markets operate in Kansas, and agents and specialists from K-State Research and Extension play a key role in developing these markets. They offer classes, one-on-one consultation, workshops, and conferences to provide expertise to growers. In addition, more than 25,000 pounds of fresh produce have been donated through affiliated gardening activities in local communities across the state.
Volume IV, Issue 3 – Summer 2014
Click here for a link to the weekly K-State Research and Extension Tuesday Letter.
Kansas State University Agricultural Experiment Station and Cooperative Extension Service
K-State Research and Extension is an equal opportunity provider and employer.