Fate of school put on hold for week

MINGO JUNCTION – The Indian Creek board of education will wait another week before deciding the fate of Wayne Elementary School.

After a two-hour executive session on Thursday, board members tabled a decision about possibly closing Wayne Elementary and made plans to meet next Thursday at Indian Creek Middle School.

Denise Todoroff, district treasurer, presented a financial report at Thursday’s board meeting detailing the financial state of the district.

“At the end of January compared to January 2012, our operating budget is down $500,000,” she began. “Our general operating revenue is down $1.1 million, and our expenditures are also down $270,000 due to the staff reductions we were forced to make over the past year.”

She explained the community school expenditures keep rising, causing budget issues.

“We budgeted $240,000 for those students who attend online school and we are over budget by $100,000,” she stated. “That is something we can’t help but that is another factor causing issues.”

She also mentioned that she “had to receive tax advances from the county auditor in January and February just to make payroll.”

In other matters, Melissa Brown, fifth-grade math teacher at Hills Elementary School, presented information before the board regarding character education and the student senate as well as her math benchmarks.

“I am so proud of our students and honored to be a teacher at Hills,” Brown said.

Pupils at the school participate in the following over the course of the year:

START program, with 34 mentors and 30 students, kindergarten through second grade.

Destination Imagination team competitions, with a competition set March 23 at Union Local.

Accelerated reading program, which helps accelerate both the amount of reading and the reading level of all pupils.

Jump Rope for the Heart, which benefits the American Heart Association.

The pupils also sponsored a Veterans Day program as well as an accelerated reading celebration by raising funds and collecting box tops for education; took part in a Big Brothers/Big Sisters of Jefferson County program, where 50 fourth- and fifth-graders mentored pupils in preschool through second grade; donated 900 cans of food to Mingo Social Services; and raised money for the Fund for Sight program the United Way of Jefferson County and Relay for Life.

She then briefed the board on how she presents “Math is a blast.”

“We get the students active while learning math,” she explained. “It gets them excited to learn and they really love the visuals. We also like to use real life examples to help them achieve success.”

She also explained that 45 benchmarks are required for the curriculum and they meet those benchmarks by creating a positive learning environment, understanding pupils, evaluating benchmarks, incorporating math across the curriculum, utilizing recess tutors and collaborating across the district.

In other business, the board:

Approved renewal of membership in the Ohio School Boards Association for calendar year 2013, at a cost of $5,250.00 and OSBA Legal Assistance Fund at a cost of $250.00.

Approved the sale of the old Indian Creek Junior High School at 110 Steuben St. in Mingo Junction to Gold Nugget Properties for $25,000.

Approved the following individuals for inclusion on the classified substitutes’ list: Cathleen Darling and Janice Fetty, bus driver; Rich Morelli, custodian; and Leanna Shepherd, classroom aide, secretary, cafeteria.

Approved the following individuals in the positions listed for after-school intervention to be held March 12 through April 18 and after-school OGT intervention to be held Monday through March 7: Mary F. Lucas, Lynn Mikesell, Donna Ardito and Ken Herron as facilitators; Jane Bennett, Kim Carnahan, Mary L. Morgan, Amanda Roach, Beverly Brenda, Lori Roberts, Brittany Sperlazza, Claudia Barrett, Vangelle Stakian, Lola Ellsworth, Joann Mulrooney, Ellie Churchman, James Mort, Kristi Sciarra, Megan Evans, Ken Herron, Sarah Houser, Linda Kolbus, Patricia Peckins, Ashley Vitello, Toni Voltz, Ruthann Rankin, Cathy DiBenedetto, Willemijn Lambright, Michelle Paulowski, Gina Guiliani, Amy Palma, Kristen Wiggam and Keith Swearingen, teachers; and Brenda Hyde, Linda Scarabino and Deborah Conn, aides.

Approved the employment of Crystal Davis in the position of bus attendant, effective Feb. 1; and Debra Baker in the position of bus driver, effective Feb. 1.