The Wellsville Board of Education held their regular monthly meeting Monday, April 18, in the Superintendents Office on Center St. Present at the meeting was Board President Tom Brophey, Board Members Ed Bauer, Karen Dash & Bill Miller. Also attending was Superintendent Rich Bereschik, WSD Treasurer Coleen Wickham and Wellsville Teachers Assoc. President Darlene Allison plus three or four Wellsville teachers.
The Treasurer's Report was approved as read. The General Fund balance, as of the end of March, was $1.8 million and General Set-Asides was $719,962. Interest earned for the month of March was $2,986.
President Brophey reported that the Governor has signed Senate Bill 5 and it will become law toward the end of June or 90 days from March 31. Initial reports from Governor Kashich's staff indicate the legislation for the new two year budget has an “increase” is state funds for education. However with the decision not to replace stimulus funds and the proposed reduction in replacing the losses of the local tangible personal property tax actually amounts to losses of more than $3.1 billion to education funding state wide during the life of the budget. Many districts will be facing cut backs in staff and/or programs or be forced to place new tax levies on the ballot in upcoming elections.
Although actual language for House Bill 153 was not available for the April Legislative update some of the items being looked at in addition to the tangible personal property tax is a 15 year phase out of payments for those districts that depend heavily on the tax replacement funding. County ESC funding would be cut by 10% in 2012 and 30% in 2013. Contributions for retirement systems would be changed to 12% for both school districts and employees and any reduction in teaching staff would be based on job evaluation ratings instead of the current seniority system.
For Buildings and Grounds, Mr. Bereschik reported that they are now looking at replacing the east side grandstand with a seating capacity of 750 giving the total stadium capacity 2000 seats in all. The committee is awaiting the results from the recent boring tests so the number of required piers for the new stands can be determined. It was discovered that a lot of industrial fly ash was used as fill under the old grandstands. Plans are still in place to have the new stands ready for use for the home opener next football season.
For the Good News report Mrs. Maxine Rockhold reported that the Right to Read Week has been brought back to Daw Middle School. The high school Y-Teen/Leo Club Red Cross blood drive had outstanding results with 91 pints of blood collected this year. Normal average for that community service project is around 40 pints. The Prom Promise mock accident was very impressive. This year's prom will be held Saturday, April 30, with the Grand March to start at 5 PM. Mrs. Allison reported that admission to the Grand March would be by donation.
The Board approved to have Dr. Laurie Punch to be the keynote speaker for Wellsville's 135th High School commencement. Dr. Punch was a member of WHS Class of '93 and was recently elected to the WHS Athletic Hall of Fame. She still holds the record in both the shot put and discus track events at WHS. Dr. Punch is a Trauma Surgeon at the Univ. of Maryland Medical Center and is also an Assistant Professor at that university. She resides in Baltimore.
In personnel action Jeff McIntosh was approved as a volunteer baseball coach for the 2011 season. Lyndsy Kelly's resignation as Middle School cheerleader adviser was accepted and Emily Barlow was given the nod to be the Spring Play director. Gretchen Madden was added to the Daw after school proficiency review team as a substitute teacher/tutor. One, two and three years contracts were approved for 11 people. Assistant Superintendent, Director of Fed. Programs and Garfield Principal Lisa Ferguson was granted a five-year contract beginning next August. Non-renewal of many temporary and substitute's contracts was approved. This is a standard yearly procedure that is effective at the end of each school year. Most of them will be renewed later for the next school year.
Unless a way can be found to bring them back eight tutors, who's salaries were paid out of stimulus funds, will not have their contracts renewed. Bereschik noted the move in no reflects on the performance of theses employees and that they all proved to be valuable assets to the Wellsville teaching staff. However the stimulus funds from the Federal ARRA expires at the end of the 2010-2011 School Year and our State legislatures have voted against replacing the funding.
Field trips for the WHS Music Department for March 29 through April 1, 2012, to Nashville, TN was also approved. Field trips that far in advance are not normally approved so early but this one was necessary in order to begin fund raising. Another field trip to the Monaca Movie Theater in Monaca, PA, for the Garfield kindergarten & Intervention Special Classes on April 29th was also approved.
In closing remarks President Brophey noted the Middle School Science Fair was very interesting. The Military Ball was very nice and he thanked all that participated in the mock disaster for the Prom Promise. Ed Bauer thanked his fellow Board members and school officials for maintaining communications with him while in Florida, keeping him in the loop on the contract negotiations. He thanked Mrs. Allison for working with them in getting the contract done. Finally he thanked everyone, fellow Board members, officials and the unions for all working together allowing all to be good stewards of the tax payer's money. Bill Miller thanked Tim Householder & Joe Traina for the improvements made to the Hammonds Park baseball field. With their efforts improving the drainage teams are now able to use the field after a rain. Mrs. Dash congratulated the WHS Girls Track Team for their showing in the Shadyside Relays under less than favorable weather conditions. She also noted she's very impressed with the efforts of Building Leadership Teams on the District Leadership Committee. The teams are doing a great job and noted only good things can result with their help.
The meeting was adjourned at 7:04 PM. Next meeting is scheduled for Monday, May 16 at 6:30 PM in the Superintendent's Office.