Millcreek-West Unity Begins New School Year

The principals of the elementary school and high school, plus the members of the school board expressed their pleasure at the first week of school starting out “without a hitch” during the Board of Education’s first meeting of the school year on August 26, 2013. Students and teachers alike had a smooth transition from the weeks of summer vacation into the new year.

Board member Sarah Carothers gave her Legislative Liaison report. She informed the board that the federal sequester has resulted in $65.7 million in cuts for grades K – 12. In order to help offset some of those cuts, the Ohio Department of Education has given $19 million to the school budget funds. Also, further investigation into House Bill 59 has shown that while poor rural districts had received an 8% increase in funds this year, wealthy districts had received an increase of 14%.

Steve Riley, who begins the 2013-2014 school year as Junior High/High School Principal said that on August 15, Seventh graders had an orientation. Over 200 people attended the K – 12 open house. He had also seen a good start to the new year, and good behavior during the transition. He congratulated the faculty and staff for the smooth beginning. Golf began on August 12, and Cross Country on August 26. Upcoming events include the district’s first football game on August 30 against Montpelier High School. The Marching Band will perform at that All-District Band show at the fair on September 9. Students who have taken the ACT exam, which shows readiness for college, have tested, for the most part, ahead of state averages. Riley discussed the State Report Card. He said that as of the time of the meeting, he had not been able to access the website to see how Millcreek-West Unity had scored, but that this year, there had been a change in how schools are graded. Beginning in October, school districts are being required to accept home-schooled and other non-public students to try out for athletic teams. He did not yet know if this would affect the district.

In her report, Elementary/Middle School Principal Laura Springer agreed that the open house was heavily attended, and that the first week was successful. She gave a report on first week enrollment. She was planning for DIBBLES testing, which should be completed by the end of September. The ODE diagnostic assessments screening is also being done for the beginning of the year, and at the school year’s end, there will be full testing. Those not passing will receive a RImp, Reading Improvement Plan. On September 17, school pictures will be taken, and on that same day, the 6th grade will present their annual Constitution Program.

The board approved the Consent Agenda which included:
1. Approve the minutes from the July 2013 Board of Education meetings.
2. Approve the Financial Statements and Investments for July 2013.
3. Approval to sell I-Pad and laptop to Dr. Bob Smith.
4. Approve re-hire contracts for Pat King and Lisa Dobbelaere.
5. Approval to purchase 2007 Chevy 3500 12’box van with lift gate. $10,000 with trade-in of 1996 Ford Van.
6. Approval of Agreement with Wood County Juvenile Detention Center and Juvenile Residential Center for 2013-2014 school year. $60/$55 per day respectively.
7. Approval of a Section 125 Flexible Fringe Benefits Plan for the employees of the district through American Fidelity Assurance Company.
8. Approval to reimburse Larry E. Long for his monthly dental and vision insurance premiums that he is required to continue to pay through STRS. Reimbursement will continue through the term of his contract unless he switches to Board coverage any time therein.
9. Approve the following employments/volunteers:
• Band Camp Volunteers: Brian Kuderik, Mike Nelson, and Danny York
• Football Volunteer Assistant Coaches: Doug Williamson
• Saturday School Supervisors: Lisa Dobbelaere, Mel Mercer, Steven Riley, Laura Springer
• Senior Class Advisors: Jennifer Yoh
• 7th Grade Boys Basketball: William T. Williams
• 8th Grade Boys Basketball: Troy Grime
• District Mentor Coordinator: Vickie Rhodes
• Resident Educator Mentor: Christopher Richer, Abbie Smith, Pat King, Don Leu, Tom Smith, Janie Rivera, and Kristen Boyer.
• Para-Professional: Shannon Swartz
• Varsity Reserve Cheerleading Advisor – full season: Dunne L. Masters
• Junior High Cheerleading Advisor: Linda Calvin
• Substitute Employees: Jamie Anderson as Para Professional; Emma Evans as Substitute Teacher
10. Approval of Anti-Bullying Teen Line (First Call for Help) for 2013 – 2014 School Year
11. Corey Eisel football supplemental contract approved on April 22, 2013, is to read 1 year experience.
12. Approve the cafeteria’s A-la Carte List for 2013-2014 school year.
13. Hilltop Marching Band Handbook 2013-2014.
14. Elementary Handbook for 2013-2014
15. Accept the following donations:
• West Unity American Legion 3×5 American Flag.
• District 7 Order of the Eastern Star – school supplies
There were several revenue increases listed by school treasurer Traci Thompson. The board moved to approve the revenue increases. A revised amended certificate will be filed with the Williams County Auditor to reflect the increases in fund expenditures and revenue.
The board voted to adopt a statement of compliance, adopting SB210 Section C3313.814, and will comply and enforce its nutrition standards.
Approved to attend the capital conference were Ron Baker, delegate, and Sarah Carothers, alternate for the Annual Business Meeting during the 2013 OSBA Capital Conference.

The board voted to accept the Approval of Agreement with the Village of West Unity for School Resource Officer Services for the 2013-2014 school year. Also voted upon was approval of the Audit Committee for Fiscal Year 2014: Ron Baker – President; Sarah Carothers – Vice-President; Larry E. Long – Superintendent; and Traci Thompson – Treasurer.

The next regular board meeting of the Millcreek-West Unity Board of Education will be Monday, September 16, 2013, at 6:00 p.m. in the band room.

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