The Weekly Newspaper serving the citizens of Morenci, Mich., Fayette, Ohio, and surrounding areas.

  • Front.cheers
    MACEE BEERS joins other Fayette Elementary School students for the annual Mini-Cheer performance during the half-time break at the basketball game.
  • Family.3.wide
    CHILDREN at Stair District Library’s Family Story Time toss scarves into the air during an activity. The evening program provided a mix of stories, songs, dancing, crafts and snacks Monday evening. The program is offered at 5:30 p.m. every Monday for five more weeks. The program is designed for three to five year olds and their family.
  • Front.newpaper.2
    THE INTERVIEW—Evelyn Joughin (right) records the interaction with an iPad while Jack Varga, next to her, asks questions of Morenci Elementary School principal Gail Frey. Morenci senior Sam Cool (standing) listens. Cool serves as the editor for the newspaper written by members of Mrs. Barrett’s second grade class.
  • Front.code.2
    WRITING CODE—Brock Christle (left), a Morenci fifth grade student, takes a look at the progress being made by fourth grader Anthony Lewis. Libby Rorick, a sixth grade student, is next in a line of girls trying out the coding tutorials. This year marked Morenci’s second year of participation in the Hour of Code project.
  • Front.skelton.vigil
    MORENCI’S three Skelton brothers were remembered with both tears and laughter last week during a candlelight vigil at Wakefield Park. Several people came out of the crowd to give their recollection of the boys who have now been missing for five years.
  • Front.gym.new
    REMIE RYAN (left) tries to dodge the foam wand held by Hayden Bays during physical education class at Morenci Elementary School. In the background, Lauryn Dominique and Brooklyn Williams stay clear of the tag. Second grade students were working on cardiovascular health on the first day back from vacation. For the record, Safety Tag is a very difficult sport to photograph.
  • Front.lift
    MORENCI student Dalton McCowan puts everything into a dead lift attempt Saturday morning during the Wyseguy Push/Pull event. Lifters helped raise more than $1,600 for the family of the late Devin Wyse, a former Morenci power-lifter who graduated last year. Commemorative T-shirts are still available by contacting teacher Dan Hoffman.

Two Morenci school offices consolidated 2012.10.31

Written by David Green.

By DAVID GREEN

Morenci students, parents and staff learned Friday through the school district’s alert system that a big change was ahead at the high school.

The message stated that when classes resume on Tuesday following a teacher development day, the high school office will be closed, with operations consolidated in the larger middle school office.

The office of assistant principal Phil Stark and secretary Cindy Fankhauser are now both located at the middle school where secondary principal Kelli Campbell has her office. 

Counselor Diana Fallot remains in the old high school office that’s now referred to as the counseling office. She will begin using additional space for counseling. As testing coordinator, she will also have space to store materials and prepare for testing dates.

Secretary Deb Yatzek will work in the high school office in the mornings, Campbell said, and the new student success coach—a position expected to be filled for the start of the second trimester—will work in the corner classroom across from the high school office.

Additional adult supervision will be provided by Campbell and Stark as they continue to split time between the two school buildings.

High school students will enter the building through the east doors only, by the main parking lot. All doors to the school will remain locked at all times after 7:50 a.m. Students arriving late for school, along with parents and other school visitors, must now enter through the middle school front doors and report to the main office.

Discussion about the change began last year, said superintendent Michael Osborne, and was originally scheduled to take effect at the start of the school year. 

Osborne said there are schools of similar size that function with a single office between two buildings and he doesn’t think it’s necessary to maintain two. He believes the adjustment will largely be a matter of accepting a change in the way things have always been. Think about Adrian High School, he said, that has three floors but only a single office.

An administrator couldn’t be in all places at once even when the high school office was open, he said. Teachers must continue to help monitor hallways between classes.

There are some issues that need to be addressed, he said, such as the intercom system. Having the office in the old location probably did prevent some discipline problems, he said, and attention will have to be given toward adequately covering the change.

Osborne sees the potential for cost savings, particularly if the board office is moved to the high school as the board of education has discussed.

“We’re in the process of putting together a deficit elimination plan that will address several areas,” he said. “We’ll put together some options for the board to consider.”

About 75 percent of school revenue goes toward salaries and benefits, Osborne said, and he’s now taking a closer look at the remaining 15 percent.

Negotiations with teachers will be coming, he said, and he wants them to know the administration has looked at all facets of the school in an effort to cut costs.

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