By Ellen Simmons
Monday's New London Board of Education meeting was held in the school cafetorium instead of the board meeting room because of the number of people attending.Most in the audience were teachers and their supporters and all had the same message for the board, which was, "We are deeply committed to the success of every student in this school district and to insure all students have qualified, caring and dedicated teachers. We need a fair contract."The teachers and the board have been negotiating for a year, according to district superintendent Brad Romano. "Under the Ohio Revised Code, all provisions of an expired contract remain in effect until a new contract settlement is reached."Both sides said they are negotiating in good faith towards a contract that will benefit everyone. Board member Dominic Maiani told the teachers, "Never question that we doubt you." Romano added, "We are working very hard to reach a contract that is fair to the teachers, district and the community." Neither side listed the issues yet to be settled.In his legislative report, Superintendent Brad Romano said the state legislature is busy working on the budget and, "It's too early to comment on it." He added there are two other bills affecting schools. One is the future of Common Core standards in the state and the other is whether to require the teaching of cursive writing in the schools.In other business the board approved participation in the Ohio School Comp Workers' Compensation Group Rating Program for $620 a year, which is a $15 increase from the past year.Also approved was the service agreement with Huron County Public Health for School Nursing services for the next year, not to exceed 90 hours at $36 an hour.The charter for the Agricultural Education Advisory Committee was accepted, as was an agreement with Schlessman Seed Company for the creation of Agricultural Educational Test Plots, from May 1 until Dec. 31. These plots will be located on 16 acres of school land west of the buildings near the creek.The school Disaster Recovery Plan was agreed upon, as was the list of 75 graduating seniors from the Class of 2015, pending fulfillment of all local and state requirements.The board approved the resignation of sixth grade camp advisor Mike Held, elementary school counselor Kimberly Go and elementary physical education teacher Tyler Gates. Lacie Green was added to the classified sub list, Cindy Martz is the new sixth grade camp advisor and Thaddeus Sendelbach is the junior high track coach.The contracts of cafeteria supervisor Samantha Matthews and maintenance supervisor Mike Snyder were extended from Aug. 1, 2015 to July 31, 2018.In other routine matters the board contracted with Northwest Evaluation Association for the Web-Based Measures of Academic Program and with the Lorain County Board of Developmental Disabilities for early intervention services for Lorain County for the next school year. The latter involves the Help Me Grow program for New London preschoolers in Lorain County.Policy changes involving graduation/diplomas, student discipline, fire/tornado warning drills, college credit plus program and investment policy were adopted, as was a service agreement with UpSlope for Risk Management in an Education Environment at a cost of $7,640.The Educational Service Center of Lorain County will provide services for the next year, and so will North Point Educational Service Center. Flat Rock Education Center will do the same for $32,000, prorated based on student attendance. Student Accident Insurance will be offered from Battles Insurance at no cost to the district. All of the above agreements run from July 1, 2015 through June 30, 2016.The board then moved into executive session and took no further action.The New London Board of Education meets regularly on the third Monday of each month at 7 p.m. in the board conference room.