By DAVID GREEN
Ohio—and 47 other states—missed out on federal funding via the Race to the Top program. Many states, including Ohio, were faulted for a lack of support from local school districts, so the Ohio Department of Education is putting some money behind its attempt in the second round of federal funding.
Fayette’s Board of Education Monday night approved a new Race to the Top memorandum of understanding that comes with a $100,000 funding guarantee over four years.
A total of $400 million will be distributed to local districts to entice them to sign up. The funds would be delivered only if Ohio chosen for the program in the second round of funding.
BUS—The board approved a bid from Cardinal for a Micro Bird 30-passenger mini-bus. The bus will replace two vans for transporting special needs students. Federal funds are being used to pay $47,000 of the $55,000 cost.
The local share of the cost should be made up within two years, said superintendent Russ Griggs, due to the improvement in efficiency.
FINANCES—District treasurer Kelly Bentley told board members she’s seeing doom and gloom in budget matters.
“I’m seeing more expenses than revenues,” she said.
Bentley will present an updated five-year forecast at the May board meeting.
RETIREMENT—An early retirement incentive was approved by the board offering a one-time payment to a teacher with more than 34 years of service. The retirement would bring a payment of $300 for every year of teaching at Fayette. The one employee who could take advantage of the option has until May 15 to sign up.
COPIES—The board approved a fee of five cents a copy for photocopies that aren’t for school use and 10 cents a copy for color copies.
TRIP—The Spanish Club changed its travel destination from Puerto Rico to New York City for a four-night trip in April 2011.
HANDBOOK—The board approved an updated student/parent handbook for the high school. Principal Dan Feasel said most changes resulted from suggestions from the state principal’s association or to make policy meet current code.
Changes include the requirement for four mathematics credits beginning with the class of 2014; age limits and attire regulations for school dances; dress code at school in relation to holes in clothing; adding policy on “sexting.” There have been no instances of sexting, Feasel said, but policy must be in place in order to deal with it.
Flexible credit is also addressed, Feasel said. With this option, students can obtain credit without being in school, although requests must be approved in advance by school officials. He listed on-line courses and overseas trips as examples.
Feasel said the option won’t be discouraged, but not all requests would be approved.
PERSONNEL—Jason Ohlemacher was hired as a full-time substitute to replace Cameron Thompson who will be starting a family leave.
The board hired Dave Hoste to continue serving as athletic director. Applications were received from 14 people and a committee of seven people conducted interviews and made a recommendation to the board. The board also approved the July 1 retirement of Debby Hatcliff.
Family leave was approved for Andrea Jacobs (March 16 through April 26) and for Sarah Altstaetter (May 27 through Aug. 20).