(Posted Jan. 12, 2017)
By Sandi Latimer, Staff Writer
Some district residents have questions about hiring procedures for coaches at Jonathan Alder Local Schools, specifically at the junior high.
At the Jan. 9 school board meeting, Adam Parker asked if coaches at that level have the necessary training to prevent or treat injuries and if they have the proper paperwork in place when they are hired. Parker has five children enrolled in the district, including a daughter at the junior high.
Superintendent Gary Chapman said procedures were changed so that paperwork is required before a person is hired.
Resident Bruce Hooley wanted to know if a policy is in place to address competency of coaches to teach in the classroom. Chapman assured him that policies and procedures are in place.
Also on the topic of athletics, Gary Bourquin asked why Jonathan Alder doesn’t have individual records posted for different sports.
“My daughter plays AAU basketball and we travel a lot,” he said. “From everywhere we’ve been, Jonathan Alder is the only school that doesn’t have any records posted. This is something individuals can shoot for and something that families take pride in.”
He said he also has addressed Plain City council about the lack of signs coming into town, proclaiming the village as the home of various Jonathan Alder sports champs.
School board member Tom Bichsel said the old high school had had such records displayed on the walls, but doesn’t know what happened to them.
Newly elected board president Shannon Foust said school leadership will look into the various athletics related questions. Board member Steve Votaw wants answers by the next board meeting on Feb. 13.
Four students from Plain City Elementary presented the board with an overview of the legislative branch of government.
A.J. Egerton, Rochelle Husband, Javon Abernathy and Lauren Wynk shared the story of their research. They outlined what they learned about the House and the Senate and the related jobs of people at the state and federal levels.
The government study is just one of several that students from Plain City Elementary participated in so far this year, said Principal Kelly Hicks.
“On Election Day, students voted on their favorite new food offered in the cafeteria,” she said. The winning food will be served on Inauguration Day. “Come Jan. 20, students will be dining on hot Italian subs.”
The student presenters showed their work on one of the district’s new Qomo boards. The district bought four of the computer boards using 21st Century grant funds, Title II money, and a library grant. Two of the boards are at Monroe Elementary, one is in the high school library, and one is in the boardroom, said Misty Swanger, director of curriculum and instruction.
In organizational business for the new year, the board made committee assign-ments. Tom Bichsel will serve on the insurance committee and as a liaison to Tolles Career and Technical Center. Foust and Votaw will continue to serve on the financial advisory committee. Christine Blacka will serve on the technology committee, and she and Mary Jo Boyd will serve on the board policy update and review committee. Boyd and Votaw will serve on the JA Community Support Coalition committee.
The Community Support Coalition was formed after two Jonathan Alder students took their own lives in February 2015. The group is made up of religious, medical, and other community leaders who work together to address personal issues of students.
Shawn Heimlich, director of student services, has worked with leaders in Greene, Clark, Madison and Union counties to connect students with services in their communities. He will present Jonathan Alder’s story at a national conference in Las Vegas Jan. 18-20.
Board members adopted their meeting schedule for the year. They will meet in March at Monroe Elementary and in October at Plain City Elementary. Most other meetings will be held at the high school. Meetings are at 6:30 p.m. the second Monday of the month, with the exception of June and July. Those dates are June 26 and July 17.