By Sandy Rose Schwieterman
For the Sidney Daily News

The Minster Board of Education meeting on Monday focused primarily on student achievement and personnel contracts.

The board recognized the valedictorian and salutatorian of the Minster High School Class of 2024. Jacob Keller, son of Ron and Leanne Keller, is the Class of 2024 valedictorian and Hannah Oldiges, daughter of Ted and Maria Oldiges, is the Class of 2024 salutatorian.

As the current school year winds down, the superintendent said plans are being made for the 2024/2025 school year.

He said the District Leadership Team will be meeting later this week to review the strategic plan and to determine the strategic work and focus on the next year and beyond, centered around the areas: 1) Academic Success; 2) Safe and Innovative Learning Environments; 3) Fiscally Responsible and Effective Use of Resources; and 4) Engaging the Community.

This summer, he said there are two main facility improvement projects that will dominate activities. One is the relining of the pipes in the high school and the other project is the $1.8 million bleacher replacement project, which will result in a complete replacement of the approximately 50 year old structure with handicapped accessible, ADA compliant aluminum seating with wider aisles, exits and space between the rows.

Two open positions for the 2024/2025 school year include a 1st grade teacher, an elementary intervention specialist, a school psychologist and a high school English teacher.

In regard to personnel recommendations, they accepted the resignation of Alicia Everman, School Psychologist, effective July 31, 2024; the resignation of Brooke Schmerge, HS English teacher, effective at the conclusion of the 2023/2024 school year; the resignation, for the purpose of retirement, of Marie-Andree Eiting, Elementary Intervention Specialist, effective at the conclusion of the 2023/2024 school year.

Other personnel actions included offering a continuing contract to Melissa Utrup, 7-12 School Counselor; limited 3 year contracts to Alison Borchers, Kristi Counts, Emily Funk, Lindsey Hopkins, Kelly Hoying, Caileigh Huelskamp, Kenleigh Ludlow, Lisa Neuman, Elizabeth Paulus, William Smith, and Seth Whiting. (teacher and intervention specialist); Natalie Leatherman (teacher/high school Spanish); Sarah Regendanz (teacher/talented and gifted) and Melissa Schmackers (Title 1 teacher).

Limited 1 year contracts for extended days went to Nick Baird, Jen Beair, Leah Ketner, Melissa Utrup, Greg Zumberger and Paul Winglewich.

Summer School and Extended School Year Services contracts went to Savina Bair, Melissa Schmackers, and Kelly Wiss.

Continuing classified contracts went to Christe Sanders and Annette Moran

Limited 2 year classified contracts went to Brenda Eiting and Kelley Hirschfeld

Limited one year contracts went to Lisa Schemmel and Emily Funk.

The Minster Board also approved summer tech support, groundskeepers and summer custodial help as needed and a long list of limited 1 year supplemental contracts, including athletic coaches, class advisors, and student club advisors.

Treasurer Gina Selby offered the required five year forecast. She said the district’s beginning cash balance was $8,190,610 and predicted to be $8,124,050 by 2028. The district will have a revenue surplus in 2024 of $640,871 and a revenue deficit of $719,266 by 2028.

In regards to statehouse legislation, the superintendent said there are various forms of proposed legislation that potentially could impact school funding and local control so superintendents are continuously lobbying state legislators asking they carefully weigh the impacts of their actions on public schools.

The K-6 principal, Mandy Albers said state testing was complete for students grades 3 through 6. Albers also congratulated Lilia Longbrake, Nora Homan and Eli Luthman for being finalists in the National Civics Bee and congratulated Ellie Niekamp for reaching the state level God, Flag and Country competition.

In his report, Jr/Sr principal Austin Kaylor congratulated the Minster High School Symphonic Band on earning a I/Superior rating at the State OMEA event held in Findlay on April 27. He also congratulated junior Max Knapke for being named a National Merit Scholar.

He reported that on April 17, administrators met with all district teaching staff to roll out the state requirements related to the Science of Reading/Dyslexia. This requires certain 7-12 staff, primarily those who teach English or work as intervention specialists, he explained.

Finally, he said the high school graduation ceremony set for Sunday, May 26 at 1 p.m.

The Board accepted the donation of 300 units of yogurt from Danone North America for the May 1 Cat’s Running Club Ribbon Run and $1,500 from the Minster Service Club for band.

The board then went into executive session, but no announcements were made when they returned to regular session.