EAST LIVERPOOL - There is always at least a little good news that comes out of city school board meetings.
In his regular good news report last week, Superintendent James Herring advised the board that official state report card results showed North Elementary and Westgate both earned "effective" status, as did the district, the first time since 1999.
In addition, North was also rated as a high progress school, just one of 55 in the state to earn the qualification.
Herring commended students, staff and parents for working together to achieve these goals.
He also commended the transportation department for passing every inspection it has undergone this year.
LaCroft Elementary Principal Linda Lindsey gave a presentation on the third grade guarantee which will require teachers to become certified in reading as reading specialists, saying the district has few teachers who have that credential, which means they will have to return to school to obtain it.
In addition, some seasoned teachers may not even have the prerequisites to take the courses being offered to become credentialed, meaning they will have to take even more courses.
Currently, the Department of Education is not offering any type of financial assistance to help teachers meet these new standards, but Herring said there are currently 33 district teachers interested in taking the courses and he is trying to partner with Youngstown State to offer a course in the district, saying there is professional development funding available in the budget to pay for almost all of them.
North Elementary Principal Paula Ekis also reported on the teacher based team method of education currently being used, which she called a paradigm shift for teachers but which she said is showing improved results.
Treasurer Todd Puster offered an update on state funding issues, saying he believes there will be changes forthcoming and that the state is looking at ways to remedy the problem.
He and board member Larry Walton will be traveling to Columbus in the near future and hope to speak with state legislators about the need for additional funding, which he said happened in the past once people began contacting their legislators.
"It's a work in progress, not a done deal," Puster said of the budgetary process.
Board member Richard Wolf suggested the administration investigate the feasibility of using property recently purchased from BP to install a bus washing facility, which he said would not only maintain the district's fleet but be a way to contract with the city, townships and neighboring school districts for maintaining their fleets.