Safety measures, snow day academic program, reviewed by Fairlawn BOE

By Jim Painter - For the Sidney Daily News

SIDNEY – Security improvements and a new safety kit came before the Fairlawn Local School Board of Education Monday, Dec. 10. Also, a new plan to hopefully solve making up excessive snow days at the end of the year was also reviewed.

Mark Henman, the school’s resource officer, reported work was well underway to apply for a grant being offered by the Ohio Bureau of Worker’s Compensation. If chosen, the school district could receive more than $50,000 to purchase new safety equipment.

Superintendent Jeff Hobbs said the grant application was nearly complete and includes a maximum local matching dollar amount of $13,000.

Part of the funds could be used to purchase needed items for new trauma kits. Henman stated the five kits, located at strategic locations in the school, would be used if someone sustained a major injury. Items in the kits could be used to stabilize the victim until rescue personnel arrived.

Henman said members of the Sidney Fire Department would be willing to train anyone interested in assisting in such a situation.

He and Hobbs updated the board on new radios installed on school busses. The style of unit permits the driver to talk while driving. Before, if a driver was called they were required to park in a safe place before answering.

Hobbs said the radios have been well-received by drivers. Henman said they will be improved once a signal repeater system is installed atop the school building. He hopes the grant will cover the cost of the unit.

Henman said he continually looks for ways to improve security. He spoke of foot traffic flow during school and at community events. He recommended additional door locks at several locations, an additional 10 cameras to improve the view of the 81 cameras already in place, key fob entry, and, an intercom system for the playground.

After the meeting, Hobbs said, “We are excited to continue to upgrade our safety and security through the Bureau of Workers Compensation Grant. Replacing our camera system is something that is overdue, while the ability to increase our parking lot and outer facility security is a win.”

Hobbs spoke of the Blizzard Bag program being in place. The one-year pilot program goes into play once the school district has reached its maximum of five calamity days. He said the program will eliminate the need to add school days onto the end of the year to meet the state requirement for minimum days in the classroom.

Administrators and the Fairlawn Teacher’s Association teamed to develop the program which will focus mostly on technology, according to Hobbs. When weathered out of a school day past the allowed maximum, students may access the information on the Fairlawn website.

Subject assignments for all grades can be completed during the day with a teacher available for online e-mail assistance from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Hobbs explained that students who do not have computers at home will have two weeks to complete the assignment.

U.N. Model team reports

Gifted Instructor Sonya Phillips led a group of middle school students who spoke of the United Nations Model event. They told of how they met new people and were able to communicate through negotiations in a role play setting.

Phillips said their efforts resulted in successfully rising to the challenges put before them. She spoke of teaching the students to be responsible and enhancing their social skills in an adult-like manner.

Last school year, the project was financially supported in public and private donations. The group was asking the board to consider a donation to this year’s event.

Mark Maloney, the Middle School soccer coach, gave a season review of the soccer team. He said all middle school grades players totaled 19 with eight playing soccer for the first time.

He suggested the board consider fielding a sixth-grade team next year. He said it would be advantageous for varsity roster in the future.

The cost of having the team this year was $1,294 not counting transportation costs. He thanked the board for providing transportation for the teams.

In other business, the board:

• Set their reorganizational meeting for Jan. 9 at 6 p.m. followed by their regular monthly board meeting at 6:30 p.m. in the Workforce Hangar (library).

• Hired Stacy Huelskamp as substitute bus driver at a rate of $17.25 per hour.

• Accepted the resignation of Kimberly Hooker as pre-kindergarten bus driver. Hired Debra Beers for the position for the annual salary of $2,633.27.

• Hired boys sports coaches to one-year limited contracts. They include Robb Elliott, fifth-grade intramurals, $523.61annual salary; Dennis Davis, sixth-grade intramurals, $523.61; and Kevin Maddy, grades 1-4 intramurals, $349.07.

• Hired girls sports coaches to one-year limited contracts. They include Kassidy Driskell, fifth-grade intramurals, $523.61; Scott Heath, sixth-grade intramurals, $523.61; and Ashley Miller, grades 1-4 intramurals, $349.07.

By Jim Painter

For the Sidney Daily News

The writer is a regular contributor to the Sidney Daily News.

The writer is a regular contributor to the Sidney Daily News.