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Schools face changes

Big changes are occurring in the Switzerland of Ohio Local School District.

Ohio’s largest school district in terms of geography, Switzerland constantly faces unique challenges. The system primarily serves residents of Monroe County, though it does have some reach into neighboring Belmont and Noble counties. Monroe County’s population is relatively small, and its financial resources are limited, industry there has struggled in recent years.

Partly as a result of the overall climate of the county, the schools have struggled as well. From the need to replace deteriorating school buildings to difficulty maintaining and operating new structures built to replace them, the district has overcome many obstacles.

In recent months, the district has also been undergoing a transition among its staff. Several weeks ago, then-superintendent John Hall resigned. Administrative employee Jeffrey Greenley stepped up as interim superintendent, and the board recently opted to install him as superintendent.

A new challenge presented itself last week, when Treasurer Lance Erlwein announced plans to resign. He will leave his post March 10 for a new position with the Belpre City School District, but he said he will remain available to help the district transition to a new treasurer.

Meanwhile, the board named River High School Principal Rob Caldwell as assistant superintendent for the district last week. He will continue to serve as River principal until the end of the school year but plans to spend one or two days a week transitioning to his new position.

Caldwell is a a River graduate and a resident of Powhatan Point with many years of experience as an educator. He is expected to serve as a “hands-on guy” working with other staff members and freeing Greenley up for other tasks.

We hope Greenley and the board will be able to find a qualified replacement for Erlwein quickly, since finances are key to the district’s success. We also wish Greenley and Caldwell all the best in their new posts. Their successes will surely pay off for district students in the future.

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