The Vermilion Board of Education met on Monday, Oct. 11.
Board member Chris Habermehl asked when the posting for the superintendent job ends. Board President Sara Stepp responded Nov. 5. Habermehl said that will generate additional meeting, and he did not want anything to creep into the schedule prior to Nov. 10. Stepp said when the posting ends, board members will get copies of the candidates’ profiles, and then meetings will be set up to interview. Board member Shelly Innes said those will be in executive session as they deal with personnel. Habermehl said those are published meetings, even though they are executive sessions. Stepp said it is a job interview. Stepp said the district is calling staff, administrators, etc. to ask people in the district what they think the board needs to look for, as the employees work with the superintendent every day. Habermehl said a candidate should be chosen by the end of the calendar year, but that person will not begin until next school year.
Family First Nights
Asst. Supt. Lisa Deliz said Vermilion will be hosting Family First Nights. She said this is something other districts do, and the first one coming up is on Nov. 10. “It is truly family first – we will not be holding any after school activities; we will not be assigning homework. We are asking families to spend quality time together. Deliz said there are some businesses and groups in town that are offering fun things for families to do. She said the list is small, and they wanted to start small with this endeavor. Olive Scene is offering a mini bottle of olive oil, Ritter Library will have special events and activities on Nov. 10 for families; Dr. Andrea Fisher is offering free eye appointments; if you call Lakeview Baptist Church is offering a family movie with popcorn. She said other companies have reached out as well. “We’re really encouraging families to eat dinner, play a board game…This is a time for us to slow down, spend time together, and we don’t have to worry about cramming in homework or running to sports practice or anything like that.” She said another such night is scheduled for March 9. “I’m looking forward to this growing every year.”
Memorandum of understanding
A memorandum of understanding was approved between the board and the Vermilion Teachers’ Association as far as the 2021-22 co-curricular and athletic supplemental schedule included in the VTA negotiated agreement. Treasurer Justin Klingshirn said when the district does its negotiated agreements, which are typically for three years, he will calculate the salary schedules and supplementals, and the Ohio Education Association does this as well. This year, everything lined up fine, but when the district went to pay them out, payroll had different numbers than what was in the contract. For the district to pay, he said a memorandum of understanding is needed for the audit. Board member Chris Habermehl asked how this affected the district’s finances, if it was a large amount. Treasurer Justin Klingshirn said it depended on the supplemental contracts, but it amounted to “a couple dollars here and there.” Klingshirn said, “It was just very minor changes.”
Klingshirn gave specifics about the district’s finances through Sept. 30. Through the end of September in all funds, the district received $10.2 million. He said the district is on pace to collect the amount of revenue it historically has. Overall, the district is expected to expend more funds in the current fiscal year, mostly due to salary and benefit costs, as well as purchased services. He reported with full federal reimbursement this year, the food service fund will grow as the district charges $2.75 per meal, and the full federal reimbursement is $3.06 per meal, which means every meal sold will be reimbursed at 31 cents more than is taken in. The district’s investments are suffering as a result of the interest rate, with $44,306 earned compared to more than $48,000 last year, or 8.2% less this year than last year.
The board approved an agreement with Franklin Covey Leader in Me to provide training, coaching and materials for Unconscious Bias and Equity in Education Professional Development at a cost of $3,500. Klingshirn said this was for certified staff only.
The board approved an updated contract with Frontline Education Time and Attendance beginning October 18, 2021 through June 2025 at a total cost of $36,309.66 plus $7,500.00 for implementation one-time charge. Klingshirn said the program is used for absence management, but not as a time clock. This will work everything electronically and would free up a lot of time.
The board accepted the following: anonymous donation of $295.00 to VHS Principals Fund; Collin Trimble donation of $15.00 to VHS Sailor Support; Madeleine Chapter 204 Order of the Eastern Star donation of $100.00 to VES Principals Fund for Halloween candy; Great Midwest Sports donation of $1,000.00 to Athletics; Varsity News Network donation of $2,307.80 to Athletics.
The board approved the following personnel actions: Resignations: Adriana Ramirez, VHS Winter Guard Advisor effective 9/27, 2021; Brigid Voreis, 4th Grade Team Leader effective 9/9/21; Maternity leave for Shelbi Thomas, approximately 3/2/22-5/16/22; one-year classified limited contracts to: Sarah Worley, Monitor SMS to VES Educational Aide, $13.86/hr.; Lori Knick, Monitor SMS to VHS Food Service, $11.72/hr.; Jeffrey Keck, Educational Aide SMS, $16.24/hr. 3 days per week; Angela Radford, Monitor SMS, $10.46/hr. ;Dominic Januzzi, Educational Aide SMS, $13.20/hr. 2 days per week; Amanda Bryk, Monitor SMS, $10.46/hr. The board also approved to pay $500.00 to Tony Hugo from the bowling donation fund for assisting with the bowling program.
Several parents were in attendance questioning the district’s quarantine policy, and who has the right to quarantine students. One of the parents said in speaking with Erie County Health Commissioner Pete Schade, the district had no right to diagnose her daughter, and one man in the audience said they had no right to give the health department the district’s seating chart for contact tracing. The discussion went back and forth, and at one point, one of the parents told the assistant superintendent to “shut up.” The board and the assistant superintendent took the information and said they would get back to the parents.
The next regular meeting of the board will be Wednesday, Nov. 10 at 7 p.m. at Vermilion High School, 1250 Sanford St., in the Workforce Development Room.