By: Lucinda Held-Faulhaber
Hearing of exciting Edon FFA Chapter happenings now taking place was part of the straightforward agenda addressed by Edon Northwest Local Board of Education during its regular monthly meeting held Tuesday, May 12, 2015. President Jamie Schaffter called the evening session to order with all members and six guests in attendance.
“This year Edon Farmers Co-op has donated a twenty-two acre Test Plot to the FFA,” began Samantha Trausch, Treasurer. “It’s just west of the Fertilizer Plant and Art Herman and Keith Stark will be organizing and helping us with the project.” She further explained Everetts Family Farms worked the ground, Trausch Brothers, LLC would be planting and harvesting the beans while local growers and seed salesmen are donating all seed for the project; the Chapter will cover any related fertilizer and fuel costs. “Our anticipated revenue is seven thousand dollars,” Samantha noted with a smile.
Earlier this month, nineteen Chapter members took part in the 87th Ohio FFA State Convention held in Columbus. “We attended sessions, listened to keynote speakers and toured the Anthony-Thomas Candy Factory,” shared Jordan Winebernner, Sentinel. “Our Chapter was recognized for donating $200 to Children’s Hospital as well.” Also recognized during the Convention were Phillip Richmond for his Gold-rated Secretary’s Book and State FFA Degree recipients Heath Brown, Kyle Long, Morgan Hiller and Tyler Seaman.
“We’re State Champions in Grain Merchandising!” Samantha proudly announced next. “Our team – Phillip Richmond, Tyler Seaman, Preston Thiel, Kyle Long, Garrett Trausch and Kaden Sapp – trained with Joe Radabaugh at the Edon Farmers Co-op and took top honors.” After completing online exams covering all facets of marketing grain and grain products, the top ten individuals from across Ohio had to interview during the State Convention ~ which included three from the Edon Chapter! “Phillip placed 3rd; Tyler placed 4th and Preston placed 8th,” she was happy to report.
While this school year nears completion, Chapter members and Advisor Hannah Crossen eagerly look forward to another successful year in 2015-2016. With several events already planned, Jordan enthusiastically reminded everyone not to forget their annual Chicken BBQ during Edon Days in August!
“The FFA program certainly is a benefit for our District,” remarked President Schaffter. “Thank you, Miss Crossen [for all that you are doing].”
May Reports highlighted to the Board that evening included:
Superintendent John Granger
- Thanked District voters for “stepping up” and passing the one percent earned income tax. While it will annually bring in an estimated four hundred seventy-five thousand dollars, it’s not enough money to bail the District out; it’s going to take help from the State and the Board being good stewards of taxpayer money to close the margin of annual deficit-spending. Thanks was also extended to those who emerged as community leaders; they worked hard on a positive campaign, embraced the plan and successfully executed it.
- Noted he’d shared with State Senator Cliff Hite during the Senator’s recent visit to Edgerton High School’s government class, how District residents had done what they needed to do to improve the local share index, an action usually rewarded by the State; don’t punish the District because it has fewer students.
- Conveyed his appreciation to the Board for the positive working relationship they’re building together and the open communication they’ve established. He also commended them on the wise decision made last December to go forward with the earned income tax.
- Shared the status of current personnel including: Athletic Director, Family Consumer Science Teacher (half-time), Head Varsity Boys Basketball Coach and Sixth Grade Teacher positions remain open; the possibility of bringing the present NWOCA “Rent-a-Tech” Program technician in-house and adjusting Media Center Aide hours to have the library open on Mondays.
- Stated two negotiation sessions are slated for May 18 and May 26; if an agreement can be reached, teachers could possibly be voting May 29.
- Expressed how very fortunate it is to have the Edon Farmers Co-op ‘do what they do’ for the District; it’s a great relationship with them.
Grades 7-12 Principal Anthony Stevens
- Commended April 2015 High School Student of the Month, senior Kenny Ordway (unable to attend) and Junior High Student of the Month, eighth-grader Naomi Hickman.
- Noted Testing is completed for the year; 2015-2016 dates have been released by ODE; Internet Safety and Cyber-Bulling programs on May 11 were very informative; A.L.I.C.E. training was conducted for support staff; the second spring security drill was carried out; Prom 2015 went very well and Academic Boosters Club members continue to develop fundraising ideas for student rewards (including recently ordered Academic Letter E’s) and other incentives.
- Shared summer intervention opportunities (traditionally available at Four County Career Center) would be held on campus (transportation not provided); costs for the three hours per day/three-week session are covered by the District’s Straight A Grant and REAP funding.
KK-6 Grade Principal Michelle Molargik
- Congratulated April’s Bomber Courtesy Club members.
- Shared testing is completed; Edon Northwest Parents Club is determining ways to disburse funds for elementary school needs and Edon Elementary Summer Reading Challenge will be introduced during Family Literacy Night on May 26 beginning at 5:00 p.m.
- Noted response to the five-week Summer Intervention Program was very good; students in grades 1-4 will meet three hours/day, five days/week each session (two weeks in June and July; one week in August). Transportation and other program costs (approximately seven thousand dollars) are funded through federal monies from the U.S. Department of Education’s REAP (Rural Education Achievement Program)
Treasurer Bill Blakely
- Submitted his standard SM2 Report indicating revenues were up eighty-seven thousand dollars and expenses up one hundred seventy-three thousand dollars for the same ten-month period as last year. The District is tracking around eighty-six thousand dollars worse than a year ago.
- Shared updates regarding the State Biennial Budget (currently “sitting” in the State Senate) and recent meeting with Senator Hite and area Superintendents; it is hoped no school funding will be taken away with the Senate’s version of the Budget.
- Noted approximately three months of cash is available in the general fund to operate the District if no further cash is generated.
- Learned two newly-purchased busses are currently in operation; those taken out of service were traded in.
- Noted tiling project quotes continue to be solicited for review; drainage issues on the grounds will be addressed before moving forward with paving the parking lot. Both will be covered by Permanent Improvement Fund monies.
- Shared parking concerns during heavily-attended events will be looked into; staff assistance to direct traffic could be a solution.
In action taken, the Board:
- Approved Teacher Contract Renewals for 2015-2016 as presented: Continuing Contract ~ Cathy Frastaci; Three-Year Contract ~ John Gallehue, Scottie Hamman, Byron Weaver; Two-Year Contract ~ Samara Banks-Calvin, Christa Perry, Danielle Raszka, Amanda Reiter, Carl Sonneberger and One-Year Contract ~ Stephanie Berteau, Hannah Crossen, Shannon Higgins. Current teacher contracts are slated to go into effect July 1, 2015.
- Accepted the resignation of Heather Taylor as Grade 6 Teacher effective at the end of her 2014-2015 contract.
- Approved the list of graduating seniors, pending satisfactory completion of present course work and OGT results.
- Accepted Cash Donations during April from various businesses and individuals ($100/Post Prom); Edon’s Got Talent program ($100/Music Department); Louise Dick ($70/Edon FFA); Theta Kappa Chapter of Psi Iota Xi ($500/Music Department’s 2016 Washington DC trip); Anonymous ($200/Music Department’s 2016 Washington DC trip) and Box Tops for Education ($111.55 apiece to Elementary and High School Principal Funds). It was also noted February’s $250 donation to the Music Fund was made possible by the generosity of patrons and attendees of “Christmas with the Toledo Symphony” hosted by St. Patrick Catholic Church.
- Approved Carey Kiess, Brenda Parrish and Kristen Hall for Grades 1-4 Summer Intervention Teachers and Pam Rupp, Hilary Staten and Danielle Raszka as High School Summer Intervention Teachers each at the rate of twenty-five dollars per hour.
- Approved the revised Five Year Forecast and supporting notes for FY2015 through FY2019. (This is the second of two five-year forecasts submitted to the State, as required by law, during this fiscal year. Overall, not much has changed since October; however, recent passage of the one percent earned income tax will now help the District ‘break-even’ at best. To view the Five-Year Forecast and supporting notes in their entirety, go to edon.k12.oh.us; click on District Finances under Community Links.)
- Approved 2015-2016 Grades KK-6 and Grades 7-12 Handbooks as presented by their respective principals. (Minor adjustments made to better reflect current practices.)
- Approved the resolution authorizing 2015-2016 membership in the Ohio High School Athletic Association (OHSAA).
- Approved participation in the Northern Buckeye Health Plan Worker’s Compensation Group Rating Program for calendar year 2016.
- Approved the Service Agreement with Williams County Juvenile Court for Attendance Officer services effective July 1, 2015 through June 30, 2016 at a cost of one thousand four hundred ninety-four dollars.
- Learned the Athletic Council would meet Tuesday, May 19 and the Labor-Management Committee on Friday, May 29.
- Approved minutes from the regular meeting held Tuesday, April 14 and special meeting held Monday, April 27 as well as April 2015 Financial Reports.
The Edon Northwest Local Board of Education will next convene Tuesday, June 23, 2015 (moved from its regular meeting date) beginning at 5:30 p.m. in the Edon Schools Media Center.
Lucinda Held-Faulhaber may be reached at email@example.com.