District’s preschool program commended for 5-Star rating

Teachers in the East Liverpool City School District preschool program were honored at Monday’s school board meeting for achieving a coveted 5-Star rating, with (far left) Sheila Palumbo of the county ESC offering a presentation. Shown with Palumbo are teachers (front, from left): Sara Green and Mary Handley; (rear, from left): Kim White, Angela Altenhof, Sherry Blackburn, Megan Frederick and Billie Conrad. (Photo by Jo Ann Bobby-Gilbert)

EAST LIVERPOOL — The city school district’s preschool program was commended at this week’s school board meeting for attaining a coveted state rating.

During his report, Superintendent Randy Taylor recognized the preschool program for receiving the Step Up to Quality 5-Star rating from the Ohio Department of Education and Ohio Department of Jobs and Family Services.

Sheila Palumbo from the county ESC addressed the board, saying the five star rating is earned by programs which exceed standards set by the state, and she outlined the criteria teachers met to earn the honor, showing thick binders of records each teacher maintained as part of their efforts.

She commended them for the “outstanding and awesome job they did for the children and preparing them for kindergarten.”

Taylor also praised the teachers for the “exceptional job they do with our littlest Potters.”

In personnel matters, the board approved the resignation of crossing guard Janet Falatek and the appointment of William “Andy” Miller as varsity boys track coach.

Also approved was an agreement with Ohio Valley College of Technology to allow student nurses to shadow school nurses for training and experience.

During the re-organizational meeting prior to the regular board meeting, member Sara Porter was elected president and Bill Cowan as vice president.

Larry Walton was chosen as legislative liaison for 2017, and Porter said committee appointments will be announced at the next meeting.

A number of motions pertaining to routine board operations were also approved, including setting members’ compensation at $125 per meeting with a maximum of 24 meetings. Also approved was a motion authorizing board members to participate at their own expense in group health and dental insurance provided to district employees.

The board’s service fund was established at not to exceed $2 per child enrolled in the district, as allowed by state law, with member Richard Wolf opposed. He claimed the move was not in accordance with state law, but Treasurer Kathy Jo Laughlin said the law calls for establishing an amount not to exceed $20,000.

Legal counsel appointed for the year included Ennis Britton Co. LPA; Bricker and Eckler Attorneys at Law; and Pepple and Waggoner Ltd.

The board designated The Review and Morning Journal as the district’s official newspapers.

Regular meetings will continue to be held at 6 p.m. the second and fourth Monday of each month, with the next meeting set for Jan. 23.