MORRISTOWN - The Union Local School District Board of Education is looking at possible upgrades to make its facilities more energy efficient.
Ray Robinson, a representative from H.E.A.T., gave the Union Local School District Board of Education his company's recommendations regarding energy conservation measures for the district facilities during the board's most recent meeting.
H.E.A.T. has done 60 projects throughout Ohio, including one for Barnesville school district, relating to House Bill 264 from 1985. In effect the law makes it possible for schools to borrow money to make energy improvements, and 500 districts in Ohio have completed projects.
Robinson saw opportunities for savings in four areas: replacing inefficient lighting, installing occupancy sensors for temperature control, upgrading and servicing HVAC systems and using a web-based energy management system to take some of the burden off of maintenance staff.
Board member Allen Mann suggested that the board discuss it further. The next steps would be a letter of intent or resolution approving the project, sending the proposal to the Ohio School Facilities Commission for review and approval, finding the funding and signing the contracts.
Shane Kildow, of the Touchdown Club, showed the board plans designed and drawn by students for a proposed Wall of Honor and accessible seating area. The project will be certified by an engineer and completed through donations of money, labor and materials. Kildow estimates that 350 12-inch blocks will be needed. The Touchdown Club plans to sell memorial faceplates for the blocks at a cost of $60 each. Anyone who supports Union Local can purchase a faceplate. Board member Terry Puperi thanked Kildow for following through with the idea. Kildow encourages anyone who would like to participate to contact him at (740) 391-5928.
The district is also looking for volunteers and materials to repair and refurbish the lawn flag on Ohio 147. "It's been a source of pride with us since 9/11," said Glasgow. "Now we need a spring cleaning of the flag." Landscaping mesh underneath the rock has deteriorated. Students and volunteers have tried pulling weeds, but the grass is taking over. All 50 of the stars need to be reframed or made from concrete, and the blue stones need to be repainted. Interested volunteers can contact the district at (740) 782-1978.
Discussion ensued over a potential new position with the district, a curriculum coordinator. After first approving the job description, which would entail dealing with new unfunded state mandates in testing, curriculum and evaluations, the board voted 3-2 against accepting the resignation of Middle School Principal Jayme Yonak and approval of her contract for the new position.
Treasurer Shawn Miller explained that there will be no additional money to fund the coordinator position, and, in fact, the state is making more cuts. Glasgow estimates that it will cost the district $1,500 per month more, but retirements will absorb most of the job cost. He says the coordinator will help the schools keep up with new teacher evaluations, new testing and revised standards in 2013-14 and maintain a high achievement level for the new state grading system for districts.
Marie Compston, teacher and Union Local Education Association rep, said, "We're in the trenches every day. We've lost our gifted program; we've lost teachers; we've lost aides; our class sizes are increasing. We pay more out of pocket, yet I don't hear anyone complaining. Teachers are all trying to help each other out. We understand there's no money, but we want some of the same sacrifices from the district."
Board President Ed Stenger added that the coordinator is "not a dead issue," and wants to explore some other options that would address the financial aspects of a new-hire.
The board approved the following resignations: Joy Ogilbee, 4th grade teacher, due to retirement with 22 years of service; Linda Williams, middle school secretary, due to retirement with 35 years of service; Richard Holstein, bus driver.
They also approved the following contracts: teachers Gina Wilson, Lawrence Falbo, Andrew Susick; Diane Tomich, aide; Renee Palmer, James Thomas, Richard Wollard, Deborah Stull, bus drivers; Karen Large, cafeteria assistant. Two voluntary transfers were approved: Lydia Rutter, cafeteria assistant to head cook; Deborah Stull, after school bus driver to five-hour bus driver.
Members approved price changes for ticket prices, per the Athletic Board. The new prices are, effective in the 2012-13 school year, for JV and Varsity Football and Basketball, $5 all gate, $4 student pre-sale, no adult pre-sale; for all Varsity Volleyball and Wrestling, $5 all tickets; for 7-8-9 Football, Basketball and Wrestling, $4 all tickets; Varsity Track, Baseball, Softball, $4 all tickets; JV Baseball, Jr. High Track, $4 all tickets; adult passes, $85; student passes, $50; senior citizen passes, $25.
March meeting minutes were approved as were bills totaling $1,667,135.32. Miller noted that the food service program is now running in the black. Four purchase orders were approved: Air Filter Supply, $1,715.32; Weller Truck Parts, $1,610; Mountain Aire Heating and Air Conditioning, $23,528; Premier Agendas, $2,402. Supplemental appropriations were also approved by the board: a federal grant, Title II-D (technology) in the amount of $2,214.18 and the Mobile Assistance Tech Grant from eTech Ohio for $10,000.
The board passed a resolution expressing their non-support of chartered schools, vouchers and privatization.
Mann noted that the slip near the elementary school has been repaired and expressed thanks to the contractor for his time, efforts and equipment on the project.
Glasgow brought up a proposal for the property next to the school by a Zanesville developer. The developer is planning to construct a two-building hotel and is requesting permission from the district for an easement on the driveway. Puperi and several teachers and parents responded that they were not in favor of a hotel next door to the school.
The Ohio Department of Natural Resources has certified Union Local as a "Wild School" site. Glasgow said this was a lengthy process involving several site visits to the trail and pond, and only 100 schools have the designation. A certification ceremony will take place on Wednesday, May 16 at 6 p.m. at the middle school shelter. The ceremony will be followed by the 8th annual Healthy Ohio Fitness Walk sponsored by the Union Local Health Advisory Council. Participants will walk one mile on the trail and receive a commemorative t-shirt.
The Curriculum Committee will meet on Wednesday, May 16 at 8 a.m., and a 15 member advisory board has been assembled per a recent board meeting. A date for an initial meeting has not been set.
The Union Local Board of Education regularly meets on the third Thursday of each month at 6 p.m. in the high school library.
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