MILL HALL - The Keystone Central School Board is moving forward with a new, $410,000 wireless communications to improve technology teaching in the schools.
The effort follows another systemwide telecommunications upgrade conducted by the district about two years ago, but this particular effort focuses on wireless systems to take advantage of the more mobile electronics favored by students, teachers and administrators.
The agreement, approved by the board Thursday evening with Cisco Systems, involves no-interest financing and payment over a period of three years, with the first of three equal payments to exceed $136,667 paid in August of each year. All contracts will receive district solicitor approval and the signature of the Keystone Central board president.
Superintendent Kelly Hastings said the district has an obligation to upgrade now or fall behind on uses for technology in education. She said the district needs enough wireless potential to handle future needs in the classroom, and she promised that any system run by the schools will have "lots of filtering and safeguards in place."
Curriculum Director Terry Murty also noted the mobile systems are much more economical and useful than the static computer labs that were a former emphasis. He also said the state appears to be moving in the same direction, especially when it comes to testing systems, where paper, pencil and boxes upon boxes of mailed documents are being replaced by digital testing systems.
In other matters, the school board approved, affirmed or accepted:
r Several policy updates, including provisions covering social media, bullying and cyberbullying.
r Revisions to the 2012-2013-school calendar.
r Kimberly M. VanGorder, business manager, to serve as school district treasurer for the fiscal year beginning July 1.
r Service proposals from three local vendors for removal of municipal waste: Love's Disposal, $13,080; JJ Peters Disposal, $15,097; and Renovo Disposal, $11,388.
r The lowest acceptable bid for boiler service preventative maintenance and repair from Delval Equipment Corporation, Lebanon, $6,060.
r The low bid from Superior Plus Energy Services, Inc of Exton: 91,000 gallon of heating oil at $2.8667 plus .1426/gallon (.10 winter mix); 23,000 gallon of diesel off-road at $2.9573 plus .20/gallon (.10 winter mix); and as needed ultra L/S diesel on-road at $2.9587 + .18/gallon (.10 winter mix).
r The Alternative Education For Disruptive Youth Agreement with PA Treatment & Healing.
r Repositories and investment institutions for the 2012-2013 school year.
r Uncompensated leave for Kim High at Robb Elementary School; Sherry Nichols, cafeteria worker at Central Mountain Middle School; leave for Cindy Pompili, secretary at Bucktail Campus.
r Supplemental work during the summer months for security department personnel, total wages are not to exceed $2,000; and for the property services department; total wages are not to exceed $32,000.
r The creation of a full-time, year around school security and attendance officer position, with benefits as per the Keystone Central Educational Support Professionals agreement. The position is due to additional duties and responsibilities assigned as the result of reorganization of attendance/security office, including transfer of duties from property services office. The result is a cost savings to the district in the amount of $39,248.
Board member Steve Murray dissented, saying this was not the time to change job descriptions and add additional duties to the positions of security officer.
r Employment of Michael Fetzer as full-time, year-round school security and attendance officer at a pay rate of $10.33 per hour, with benefits as per the Keystone Central Educational Support Professionals' agreement, effective July 1, 2012.
r Furlough of Robin Crawford, 203-day secretary at Sugar Valley Elementary School, the result of transfer of students that resulted in loss of one (1) secretary position.
r Resignation of Jason Koback, third-grade teacher at Dickey Elementary School, effective August 23, 2012.
r An extended work schedule for four school psychologists and six secondary school counselors beyond the work days provided for in the collective bargaining agreement, for the 2012-2013 school year; total wages are not to exceed $15,000.00.
r Employment of tutors for the Summer 2012 21st Century Tutoring Program; salaries will be paid with grant monies: Karen Franz, Sarah Hanson and Prella Rupert.
r Employment of intramural instructors for Little Ladies 5K Run with salaries to be paid through the 21st Century Grant: Stephanie Hackenberg and Samara McLaughlin.
r Employment of summer school instructors, wages to be paid through 21st Century grant funds: including Michael Baughman, Carla Lodek, Mark Condo, Virginia Counsil, Kathryn Dorman, Sarah Lugg and Pamela Temons.
Temporary professional employees have been rated satisfactory by the principal or supervisor and the superintendent has signed the evaluation for the first and/or second semester of the 2011-2012 school year. Temporary professionals who have completed six satisfactory service evaluations will be awarded tenure and a professional contract: Ryan Broughton , Jessica Madenford, Nikole Day, Heather Masters, Laura Earon, Kelly Miller, Chad Feerrar , Lorrie Reynolds, Richard Franco, Renee Serafini, Michael Fry, Krista Shadle-Smith, Beth Hackenberg, Marie Snyder and Stephanie Hackenberg.
r Involuntary transfer of Stephanie Hackenberg, first grade teacher at Robb Elementary School, to learning support, special education teacher at Central Mountain High School.
r Board Member Tom Shafer noted the many articles appearing in the newspaper in recent weeks, outlining the post-high school achievements of Central Mountain and Bucktail area graduates. He also noted 54 National Honor Society members among the graduates at Central Mountain and five or six from Bucktail and commented, "Not too shabby."
r Involuntary transfer of Michelle Hoy, elementary library itinerant/Bucktail Campus librarian, to family and consumer sciences/English teacher at Central Mountain High School.
r Involuntary transfer of Elise Salisbury, ESL itinerant/developmental reading teacher at Central Mountain Middle School, to librarian at Bucktail Campus,
r Involuntary transfer of Teresa Everett, second-grade teacher at Dickey Elementary School, to ESL itinerant/developmental reading teacher at Central Mountain Middle School.
r Revised job description for school resource security supervisor to include additional responsibilities and increased workload due to reassignment of duties formerly done in the property services department.
r Wage adjustment for Brandon Coleman, school resource security supervisor, providing a base salary of $45,000, effective July 1, 2012. The adjustment is due to additional duties and responsibilities assigned as the result of reorganization of attendance/security office, including transfer of duties from property services office. The result is a cost savings to the district in the amount of $39,248.
r Continuation of administrative staffing assistance for the human resources office; not to exceed 700 hours annually.
r Maintain the status quo of the existing collective bargaining agreement between the Keystone Central Educational Support Professionals/ESP/PSEA/NEA and the school board until approval of a new agreement, retroactive to July 1, 2012. Hastings noted that both agreements to extend the union contract were made with the cooperation of the unions themselves.
r Maintain the status quo of the existing collective bargaining agreement between the Clinton County Education Secretarial Personnel Association/ESP/PSEA/NEA and the school board until approval of a new agreement, retroactive to July 1, 2012.