Morenci school board 2012.02.22

Written by David Green.

By DAVID GREEN

Morenci middle school and high school will be served by a single office next year rather than spreading services between two locations.

The main office will be located in the larger middle school office beginning in the 2012-13 school year. 

The athletic director and councilor Diana Fallot will continue to have offices in the high school and principal Kelli Campbell will still spend time in both buildings.

The middle school and high school will remain separate, said superintendent Michael Osborne, with limited student interaction between the two.

Morenci Chief of Police Larry Weeks spoke with administrators about security concerns and it was decided to limit access only through the middle school office once the school day is underway.

MEAP—Campbell told board members at the Feb. 15 meeting that the state has changed the cutoff score for proficiency on the MEAP test. When scores are released soon, she said it’s likely there will be a change in proficiency results compared to previous years.

However, a website at mischooldata.com will provide all MEAP data from the previous four years and apply what’s known as the new MEAP Cut Score. This will give a more accurate presentation of where the district stands.

ADVISORY—Campbell is planning a student advisory seminar in which up to 25 students will meet with her to discuss concerns and ideas for improvement.

TERMS—In future school board elections, trustees will be elected to six-year terms of office. The state is requiring terms that end in even years. Had four-year terms been chosen, four seats would have expired at the same election.

PERSONNEL—Betty Beaverson was hired as a cook to replace Mary McDowell who retired. Ruth Ann Mansfield was approved for retire/rehire in the food service program, through June 30. The resignation of bus driver Freda Wright was accepted.

Paraprofessionals Amanda Amos and Sherry Dillon were laid off, however, Dillon might be called back if a student returns to the district. Both are excellent employees, Osborne said, but their employment is based on the presence of special needs students.

Paraprofessional Heather Dilworth’s hours were reduced from eight hours to six hours.

PRINCIPALS—Supt. Osborne said that serving as a school principal has always been a difficult job, but the position involves more challenges now than ever.

The district’s past and present principals have served the school well, he said, in honor of Principal Recognition Month.

SCHOLARSHIPS—Osborne said the scholarship opportunities for Morenci students are amazing for a small town and he praised the Kiwanis Club for its work in sponsoring the Rex Riley-Kiwanis Scholarship.

JAPANESE—Three Morenci fifth grade students will join students from three other districts to study Japanese language and culture with an Adrian College professor. The project is part of the cooperative that Morenci formed with other districts.

ELEMENTARY—Dean of students Mary Fisher said that teachers are working to combine disciplines so that more reading and writing is involved in other classes such as science and social studies.

ADVERTISING—The board passed a resolution, along with several other districts, to cease promotional advertising that attempts to attract students from neighboring districts.

Instead, Osborne said, county districts need to join together to make each district successful so that no one has a reason to open a charter school. He sees more advantages in making the county as a whole more competitive.

Michigan Governor Rick Snyder has increased the limit on charter schools in the state and intends to remove all limits in the future.

  • Front.splash
    Water Fun—Carter Seitz and Colson Walter take a fast trip along a plastic sliding strip while water from a sprinkler provides the lubrication. The boys took a break from tie-dyeing last week at Morenci’s Summer Recreation Program to cool off in the water.
  • Front.starting
    BIKE-A-THON—Children in Morenci’s Summer Recreation Program brought their bikes last Tuesday to participate in a bike-a-thon. Riders await the start of the event at the elementary school before being led on a course through town by organizer Leonie Leahy.
  • Front.pokemon
    LATEST CRAZE—David Cortes (left) and Ty Kruse, along with Jerred Heselschwerdt (standing), consult their smartphones while engaging in the game of Pokémon Go. The virtual scavenger hunt comes to life when players are in the vicinity of gyms, such as Stair District Library, and PokéStops such as the fire station across the street. The boys had spent time Monday morning searching for Pokémon at Wakefield Park.
  • Front.drum
    on your mark, get set, drum!—Drew Joughin (black shirt), Maddox Joughin and Kaleea Braun took the front row last week when Angela Rettle and assistants led the Stair District Library Summer Reading Program kids in a session of cardio drumming. The sports and healthy living theme continued yesterday with a Mini Jamboree at Lake Hudson State Park arranged by the Michigan Department of Natural Resources. Next week’s program features the Flying Aces Frisbee show.
  • Girls.on.ride
    NADIYA YORK and Aniston Valentine take a spin on the Casino, one of the rides offered at Wakefield Park during Morenci’s Town and Country Festival. This year’s festival remained dry but with plenty of heat during the three-day run. Additional photographs are inside this week’s Observer.
  • Front.softball
    Angela Davis (2) and teammate Allison VanBrandt break into a jig after Morenci's softball team won its third consecutive regional title.
  • Front.art.park
    ART PARK—A design created by Poggemeyer Design Group shows a “pocket art park” in the green space south of the State Line Observer building. The proposal includes a 12-foot sculpture based on a design created by Morenci sixth grade student Klara Wesley through a school and library collaboration. A wooden band shell is located at the back of the lot. The Observer wall would be covered with a synthetic stucco material. City council members are considering ways to fund the estimated $125,000 project and perhaps tackling construction one step at a time.
  • Front.train
    WRECKAGE—Morenci Fire Department member Taylor Schisler walks past the smoking wreckage of a semi-truck tractor on the north side of the Norfolk and Southern Railroad tracks on Ranger Highway. The truck trailer was on the south side of the tracks
  • Funcolor
    LEONIE LEAHY was one of three local hair stylists who volunteered time Friday at the Morenci PTO Fun Night. Her customer, Aubrey Sandusky, looks up at her mother while her hair takes on a perfect match to her outfit. Leahy said she had a great time at the event—nothing but happy clients.
  • KayseInField
    IN THE FIELD—2004 Morenci graduate Kayse Onweller works in a test plot of wheat in Texas. She’s part of Bayer CropScience’s North American wheat breeding program based in Nebraska, where she completed post-graduate work in plant breeding and genetics.

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