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Lack of staff contributing to more remote learning

LISBON — As coronavirus numbers grow in the area, the county Educational Service Center superintendent, Anna Marie Vaughn, noted some local schools are being forced back into remote learning due to staffing issues.

While there have been students also testing positive, Vaughn said the main problem seems to be having enough qualified teachers or substitutes to fill all the positions when staff members are forced to quarantine or test positive for the virus.

In preparation for potentially needing to go remote or attend meetings remotely themselves, the ESC board will have a training work session 30 minutes prior to next month’s board meeting so they can learn to use Zoom technology. One board member, Jackie Mercer, attended Tuesday’s board meeting via Zoom and has been teaching classes at Youngstown State University using the technology since the beginning of the pandemic.

The next regular meeting of the board is at 4:30 p.m., Dec. 15.

In other matters:

— The board passes a resolution supporting House Bill 305 and Senate Bill 376, the Cupp and Patterson Bill, which is geared toward helping with the school funding situation. Vaughn said it will actually create a funding formula, instead of changing the funding for schools each year. The ESC currently receives $26 per student per day, but Vaughn said at one time they received $37 per student served. That forced the ESC to operate as a business, she said, charging schools for services they received.

— The board approved the resignation of long-time ESC administrative assistant Jennifer McCloskey and hired Alexandra Bailey to fill the position.

— The board approved hiring a list of para educators — Lisa Leanza, Christopher McKinnon, Deserae Steele, Tina Walker, Madison Miner, Clinton F. Young Jr. and Jennifer R. Rice. The board also approved hiring Jenna McNichol in Wellsville and Joseph DiLudovico in Lisbon as activity leaders for the Learning’s Cool After School Programs. The board accepted the resignations of Hannah Koran, wrap around facilitator, and Madona Milliron, para educator.

— The board approved the resignation of Brooklyn Soliday as an academic leader at Crestview. The board approved hiring Katherine Bennett as a STEM instructor.

— The board hired Rachel Hudson as an ESC work solutions job coach, entered a STEM instructional agreement with Leetonia, hired Stephanie Myers as a school nurse and approved Batzli Excavating Co., Inc. for snow removal.

djohnson@mojonews.com

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