SCSD board approves strategic plan

BY HELEN B. FOSTER

Correspondent

After 15 months and many man hours, the final 74-page Susquehanna Community School District’s Comprehensive Strategic Plan was given approval by the board Oct. 17.

According to Superintendent Bronson Stone, the goals set forth in the 2013-16 plan are doable and he is not looking for any problems getting it approved by the state board of education. The goals for the district are to ensure the consistent implementation of effective instructional practices and to fully insure students who are academically at risk be identified early and are supported.

During the district personnel reports, Stone told the board the district’s PSSA results are comparable with state results. He said the district will face challenges with Keystone exams and increasing new standards.

In the absence of Principal Mark Gerchman, Stone informed the board of the contribution by Price Gregory to finance the football field lighting for the only night game played at Susquehanna.

He also spoke of the vandalism to school property during Homecoming. The trespassers have not been identified and the incident has been turned over to the local police.

Principal Robert Keyes spoke of the upcoming “Red Ribbon Week,” held yearly to send a no-drug message to students.

Business Manager Gary Kiernan gave his monthly report that included his submission to the state department of education of transportation data for reimbursement that will be excess of $700,000. He said in 2013-14 bus contractors will be responsible for providing the aide to ride on K-4 bus routes.

Special Ed Supervisor Joni Miller gave her report and told of unforeseen circumstances occurred with fifth and sixth grade students due to scheduling issues. She reviewed with the board changes in teacher assignments with the hiring of a qualified aide.

Rich Emmons, a sixth grade teacher, represented the employees union at the board meeting, reported the union will once again provide a community dinner for all residents of the district on Nov. 10. More information on reservations will be available later.

The board approved revising the district’s health office policy concerning head lice. On the recommendation of the Association of School Nurses, the district will remove, “No Nit Protocol” and replace it with a “First Treatment Protocol” that will allow the student to return to class after they receive the recommended treatment.

Also approved were seven district transportation contracts. Stone was granted permission to tentatively hire for any vacancies that may occur between Oct. 18 and Dec. 5, the date of the next scheduled board meeting. The business office may also pay any bills during the same time frame.

Larry Todd was approved for a snow removal contract. A leave of absence was granted Stacy Thatcher, effective Nov. 13-Jan. 2. Karyn Armitage and Dori Spencer were hired as after-school tutoring teachers. Also added were Kim Garrison as boys’ volleyball scorer; Ray Testa Jr. for basketball scorer; Joshua Carpenter, junior high baseball coach for 2013.

Added to substitute list were: Kyle Cook, Michael Ervin, Zachary Knott, Richard Wade, and Wendy Hansen. Dan Maurer was added for substitute as after-school tutoring teacher and Jessica Welch as an instructional aide for high school. Jeff Baldwin was approved as a volunteer for boys basketball; Paul Rooney, Chad Groover and William Collins as volunteers for elementary wrestling.

Among the requests for field trips and facility use was a request from Price Gregory International to use elementary cafeteria on Nov. 22, from 10 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.