By Jane Ernsberger
Times-Junction News Editor
The Willard Board of Education and the Ohio Association of Public School Employees Local #291, representing classified employees in the district, have agreed to a new three-year contract. The board approved the agreement at its July meeting after a 20-minute executive session at the beginning of the meeting.
In the agreement, those represented by OAPSE, will receive a 2-percent raise the first year and a raise of 1.5-percent each the second and third year. Classified employees include bus drivers, custodians, cooks, secretaries, library aides, study hall supervisors, educational aides, bus mechanics, bus mechanic helper, building maintenance, building maintenance helper, food service driver, attendance officer and EMIS coordinator.
The board of education approved pay raises for administrators and for non-classified employees in the board office at the same rate as those of classified employees. The non-classified employees will receive the same benefits as agreed to for the classified staff.
Administrators will receive the same benefits as agreed to for teachers. Superintendent Jeff Ritz said the only two within the district not included include his position as superintendent and that of Cynthia Shoup, district treasurer.
With the start of a new fiscal year, Shoup said she is working to open the books for the upcoming school year.
“We should start running some things by the end of the week,” she note.
In the maintenance report, she told board members some sun shades were installed in the building.
“We did have some tech work done,” she pointed out.
The board approved moving the yearly $97,987 from the General Fund to the Maintenance Fund. This is required to remain in legal compliance with the new building, she pointed out.
“We can only use it for the new property,” Shoup said. “That’s the new building, maintenance and upkeep, anything like that. We don’t have a PI (Permanent Improvement) levy so that’s one of the first things we have to do in order to remain in legal status with the state.”
Ritz said he met with the architect for the bus garage project, along with a lawyer, concerning the possibility of switching the bus garage from an architect design project to a design build. He told board members he has been approached by several local contractors concerning the project. One is not interested, he noted, while the other has voiced interest in being involved with the project.
“They seem to think it’s going to be no problem,” Ritz explained. “We can just do that and enter into a contract because it’s not a school building, meaning the bus garage is not a student facility. It gives us some freedom on what we can do.
With a design build, the company takes the architect’s plan and decides what to do, Ritz said. Changes can be from a steel to a wood building or switch the type of heat.
“They can bring their costs down because they already know what they are going to have,” he pointed out, “or what they’re going to do. they have to approve it through our architect and make sure it is still appropriate for what we need.”
Several new teachers have been hired, according to Ritz. Brett Pervis has been hired to teach middle school math. She has a fourth through ninth certification and will be teaching eighth grade.
“I did talk to a couple of the sixth grade teachers about the possibility of moving them to a different grade level,” he told board members. “In talking to them, I think we’re better off right now with where we’re at with them. I feel comfortable with the fact of moving forward in a plan with them.”
The board of education approved the following for employment:
- Jennifer White - educational bus aide;
- Bob Hahler - bus driver;
- Resident educator mentors;
- Tracy Hay - high school volleyball assistant coach;
Danielle Rohrbach - middle school volleyball coach;
Sergio Lopez - boys assistant soccer coach;
- Cindy Light and Brian Napier - theatre director split position;
- Linda Newman and Marcy Delacruz - majorette/flag instructors split position;
- Jared Stockmaster - substitute custodian, and
- Stephanie Jones - substitute aide.
The resignation of Matthew Haas as a high school math teacher was approved.
Helen Daily was hired as a substitute custodian, and Sarah Schaaf was hired as a bus washer.
Ritz gave an update to renovations at the Haas Gymnasium building which will house new board offices.
“All of the contracts are signed,” he pointed out. “They’re just finishing up (the HVAC).”
The contract who will be doing the walls told Ritz that work will start next week. Once the wall frames are up, work will start with installing technology.
Ritz said the earliest the offices will be open is August. Realistically, October will be the latest.
The following volunteers were approved:
- Jason Roblin - soccer;
- Janet Cok - volleyball;
- Bob Felter - girls tennis;
- Florentino Flores - girls head soccer coach, and
- Geoffrey Perisic - girls assistant soccer coach.
The Willard Chamber of Commerce was granted approval to incorporate the Willard “W” as part of its new logo.
Agreements were approved for the Mohican Outdoor School for sixth grades students to attend May 8-10, 2019. The Board of Education is picking up $75 of the cost per student.
The following donations were accepted:
- From Huron County Board of Mental Health and Addiction Services - sponsorship of the elementary “Leader in Me” program - $2,500;
- From LSC Communications to the athletic department - $100 for basketballs;
- From Willard Area Kiwanis Club to the elementary “Leader in Me” program - $100, and
- From Kroger to the FFA program - $7.88.