Russia BOE discusses report card, enrollment

By Heather Willard -

RUSSIA — Russia Local School’s board of education discussed the school report card and enrollment numbers during its meeting on Wednesday, Sept. 20.

Principal Brian Hogan presented the positive report card numbers. The school received only A’s and B’s on the state report card, and when calculated into a GPA grade, placed seventh in the state.

The average grade on all tests was 91.4 percent, and 100 percent of students passed four tests: third-grade math, fourth-grade math, fourth-grade social studies and sixth-grade social studies.

Hogan said that because of this achievement, a field day would likely take place. No date was chosen, but talk of having tee-shirts for sale was brought up.

“It’s very important to celebrate our success,” Hogan said.

Hogan also told the board that there are 21 students attending the career center, and only 7 students attending Edison State Community College. Open enrollment was up by seven students.

Superintendent Steve Rose discussed an opportunity to replace bus driver’s school issued cell phones with bus radios. The drivers carry the cell phones so they can stay in contact with the school, but are not allowed to use the phones while driving. The radios are allowed under Ohio law to be used while driving, but there are concerns about coverage.

Rose said five radios with a repeater would cost between $8,400 and $9,200. The school also received a grant for school safety for $10,000. Since there is no other school safety need, this grant would cover the radios. This would be a one time expense, as opposed to on-going cell phone expenses.

Rose also updated the board on the softball field renovations. RCJ, Russia Boosters and Russia School District are all contributing towards the $10,000 price tag. Sod and dirt was installed starting Monday, Sept. 18, and will be off-limits once the sod is laid. The field will be closed until spring to allow the sod to properly take root.

The board hired several teachers, who are:

• Maureen Hemmelgarn, Natalie Heitkamp, John Hanson and Lydia Reinhardt as substitute teachers at a rate of $90 day.

• Kevin Phlipot, varsity baseball coach, $2,998

• Don Luthman, junior cheer adviser, $999

• Dan Schaffer, varsity boys track coach, $2,565

• Brad Heeton, varsity girls track coach, $2,332

• Mark Travis, assistant track coach, $1,333

• Shea Goubeaux, assistant track coach, $1,333

Lange Photography was hired to take photos of school sports. Groff mowing and lawn care was hired to take care of snow removal. They already take care of the church parking lot, and will be responsible for deciding which party to bill.

The board accepted $2,000 from Nissan, to be used for scholarships.

Janel Slonkosky, who teaches fifth- and sixth-grade math, presented a student and parent survey she will be conducting as her final project for her principal’s degree practicum. The survey asks questions ranging from the value of Russia Local school to their view of homework.

The next Russia Board of Education meeting will be Oct. 18 at 7 p.m.

By Heather Willard

Reach the writer at 937-538-4825.

Reach the writer at 937-538-4825.