Mt. View meals upped 10 cents

BY ROBERT L. BAKER

The Mountain View School Board voted Monday night to increase the price of school furnished breakfasts and lunches by 10 cents for 2012-13.

High school and elementary school breakfasts for students will now be $1.10 and for adults $1.50.

For students, high school lunch will be $1.85, and elementary school lunch will be $1.60, and for adults at either school it will be $2.85.

The board also agreed to increase ala carte prices by three percent, approved the offer vs. serve option for the elementary school and agreed to renew the contract for the fourth year of working with the Nutrition Group.

Patty Baresse of the Nutrition Group fielded a comment from board member Ellen Aherne who said she was concerned about new federal guidelines which cut out whole milk and two percent milk, but allow for flavored milks.

“I believe our children are better off having more fat and less sugar,” Aherne said.

Baresse said, “You don’t haave to decide on the milk issue tonight. I can provide more information from what the research shows, and then you can decide at a later meeting.”

Chichura asked if she could bring in data for the next board meeting, May 14.

In other business, the board approved the recall of furloughed teacher Jamie Janesky, who holds certification in elementary, effective May 29.

Yet, even as she was recalled, three more full-timers also had their resignations accepted: Susan J. Schaffer (learning support), Cynthia A. Oakley (elementary) and Keith E. Baker Jr.

In addition, part-time custodians Elbert Seamans and Nicholas Lewis also had their resignations accepted.

Because of the two resignations in the same department, Superintendent Andrerw Chichura rercommended that the board advertise for a part-time and/or substitute custodian with an application date of May 14. It passed unanimously.

The board also agreed to advertise for car/van contractors for 2012-13 including a wheelchair/handicap accessible van with applications due by May 31; and for a basketball cheerleading adviser with application due by May 14.

In the superintendent’s report, Chichura acknowledged attending with someMountain Viewboard members a recent regional Pennsylvania School Board Association meeting atBlue Ridgewith schools from across Susquehanna andWyomingCountiesin attendance.

He acknowledged common concerns about reduced finacing from the state, block grants and cyber/charter school impacts, and said he felt it was productive with Sen. Lisa Baker in attendance.

However, board member Tom Stoddard said he was extremely disappointed that Rep. Sandra Major was not in attendance, especially with so many school districts in her legislative district hurting as badly as they are.

Principal Andrew Doster shared that in Sunday’s Times-Tribune ofScranton, he was pleased to see twoMountain View students- Kelly Purdy and Alixandria Taylor- included in the 25 “Best and brightest” among 5,700 members of the senior class.

He acknowedged that the last round of PSSA testing was going on in the high school, and on Wednesday night, there would be an ‘Arts Alive’ program at the high school to showcase the school’s art and music programs.

Elementary principal Robert Presley said that students who did not have the two varicella immunizations (for chicken pox) By May 1, would be excluded from school on May 2.

He noted that certified letters had gone out to parents, and superintendent Chichura acknowledged 70 students were still deficient.

Susan Pipitone, director of special services, said that while some really wonderful teachers were retiring she wanted to especially recognize Schaffer in the learning support area.

Looking at Schaffer, who was in the audience, she said,“You are what educators hope to be.”

Business manager Janice Finnochio again provided overhead presentations with historical data leading into 2012-13 budget discussions.

She said the board was presently facing a structural deficit of $898,977. With new updated information that deficit had been reduced to $294,579, but a board member had pointed out a math error, and believed the number was closer to $380,000.

Finnochio acknowledged the board would have to approve a proposed budget by its May 21 meeting with a 30-day period allowed for public response.

At the end of the meeting there was discussion about revising school bus routes for 2012-13, so that there would be a net loss of one bus.

At the front end of the meeting a Mr. Liford from South Gibson said he was upset that during the school year a stop on Bus #8 was changed affecting a family member.

He said he went to Chichura with public safety concerns, but nothing was done.

Chichura said he referred the issue to the township and to PennDOT.

Liford said the response wasn’t good enough, and abruptly left the meeting. As he walked out, he said “I’ll go do what I gotta do.”

In other appointments, Janice Benedict was approved as a 90-day long-term substitute, Bridget Merritt was approved as a 90-day substitute, Tammy Swetter was approved for a 5 and a quarter hour cafeteria/study hall monitor position and Annettia Carpinetti was approved for a three hour food service position.

Also, the board approved a refunding of $4,046.95 of taxes paid byCrystal Lake PrivateParkfor 2006-2009. Chichura said a challenge had gone to the Susquehanna County Court of Common Pleas and was successfully appealed to the Pennsylvania Supreme Court.

He said the solicitor advised the group was due the refund.