Mt. View names board member
BY WILL LUVENDER
A 47-year-old mother of two was elected Monday night to join theMountain ViewSchool Board and now fills the vacancy created by the May 10 death of James Zick.
Margaret Smith, a self-described advocate for arts and music and aSusquehannaUniversitygraduate, was the unanimous selection of the school board.
Two other persons – Lilly Thomas and Robert Supancik – also applied for the position to represent Region 2 (Harford and Lenox townships) in which all candidates acknowledged there would be tough decisions ahead for whomever was elected.
All three were interviewed at the special Monday meeting which was called primarily to address the vacancy.
Smith said she recognized that budget cuts were perhaps the biggest hurdle, and with fewer students enrolling district wide, she understood why it might be looking at cutting music, art, and sports programs to help deal with the budget crisis.
But because she is a mom, she also understands fully how important these activities are for the children.
“The students have and always will be the priority,” Smith said.
She was warned that there is a lot more to do than just come sit in on meetings, noting that school board members must be flexible and able to meet different time constraints each month.
As a college graduate, Smith said she knows education’s importance and also the definition of hard work. Smith also acknowledges that with her new responsibility comes homework, reading and research.
Following the decision to appoint her, Smith was sworn in by board secretary Diane Makoskey and took her place along side the other eight members of the board.
During the meeting, the school board approved a contract for Francine Shea who last Tuesday (May 30) had been appointed superintendent effective July 1. (See separate story.)
Shea, aBuffalo,N.Y., native with 25 years of experience in education – nearly all of it inNew Yorkstate – was approved for a $100,000 starting salary.
It was announced that the Mountain View School Board has just got its hands on a new piece of technology that should help cut down the overlap of bus routes. The Versatrans Program plots out bus routes for the entire district. This program is making it easier on theSchool Districtto plan its bus routes, also making it easier to add new students and drop students who have graduated.
The Mountain View School Board will next meet in a work session at 7 p.m. on June 11, and will approve a final budget for 2012-13 on June 25.