Lincolnview raps state funding figures
DAVE MOSIER/independent editor
The Lincolnview Local Board of Education heard some less-than-exciting state funding news from Treasurer Troy Bowersock and also honored the school’s FFA program during its February meeting Wednesday evening.
(Bowersock provided a report on Ohio Governor John Kasich’s biennial budget, as it relates to school funding, noting that information released by the state that Lincolnview would receive “flat funding” for the coming school year appears incorrect.
The Lincolnview treasurer said that state officials are saying the district would receive a total of $3.6 million in 2014 and are saying that represents “zero growth” for the district. In reality, Bowersock said, the figure would be a decrease from the current year’s funding of $3.9 million, and would actually be less than that, since some funding, such as Educational Service Center money, is now included in the 2014 Lincolnview funding totals, when it wasn’t before.
“There’s a discrepancy on what they’re telling us,” the treasurer told the board.
Board President Eric Germann agreed with Bowersock, noting that he would like to see the numbers used by Kasich’s budget staff in coming up with Lincolnview’s final state funding total. He also talked about a legislative meeting he attended recently in Columbus. “It was a real eye-opening experience to hear these people talk,” Germann said, but also added he feels there is a bit of a disconnect in how state officials view Ohio school funding, versus the realities of what is actually being given to the districts.
Bowersock also talked about the district’s 2.5-mill, five-year permanent improvement levy, noting that it is up for renewal in a year. The treasurer added that the district has replaced the levy each time is has come up for renewal so that Lincolnview would receive the full millage amount and keep up with inflation, rather than have the levy diluted by state requirements that essentially keep tax issue revenues the same each year, instead of allowing them to increase as property tax valuations rise.
Bowersock also reported that the district would receive wind turbine payments starting next year, with a total of $398,766 to be paid out in two installments.
Lincolnview FFA members were also on hand Thursday as the board approved a resolution denoting National FFA Week. Several FFA-related activities are planned during the week.
During his report, Superintendent Jeffrey Snyder talked about a lockdown drill held February 4 in conjunction with the Van Wert County Sheriff’s Office. Following the drill, school administrators and Sheriff Tom Riggenbach and his deputies critiqued the event and looked at ways to improve school security.
Additionally, Snyder said he continues to feel that student — and parental — input is critical to making the district more secure. “I still believe in the philosophy of getting kids to talk,” he said, adding that he has also seen a deputy walking through the schools just about every day since the lockdown drill.
As part of increasing security at the school, the board approved a request to use a waiver day for an additional workday with the sheriff’s office on school safety. A “panic button” system and additional cameras are also planned to increase building security.
During his buildings and grounds report, the superintendent said the Lincolnview sign formerly located on Lincoln Highway and taken down when roadwork was done, will be replaced by a new sign.
During his report, Elementary Principal Gordon Stemen talked about upcoming Ohio Achievement Testing, while High School/Junior High School Principal Kelly Dye reported on upcoming Ohio Graduation Test administration in March and also updated the board on a $1,000 High Schools That Work grant that would provide professional development opportunities for district teachers.
Also on Thursday, the board took the following action:
- Approved the 2013 summer school program and authorized contracts with the following teachers: Tom Mayes, Suzanne Hall, Valori Dunn and Mandy Looser.
- Approved remediation contracts with Malinda Shellabarger, Patti Cox, Hannah Rockhold, Nicole Early, Ellen Hemple, Kim Evans, June Young and Glenn Hicks.
- Approved a home tutoring contract for Anna Baker during the second semester for a maximum of five hours a week.
- Approved the following coaching staffers: Chris Youtsey as varsity basketball assistant coach, Chad Overholt as junior high basketball coach, and Hannah Rockhold as junior varsity softball coach. Unpaid volunteer coaches approved include Todd Fox (junior high baseball), Al Arnold (high school track), Dianna Ashbaugh and Calli Copus (softball) and Jeremy Ebel (baseball).
- Approved included indoor track as a club sport for the 2012-2013 school year, so that Lincolnview athletes can compete in open meets in the area. Ben Cowan and Matt Langdon were also approved as unpaid volunteer coaches.
- A new Fellowship of Christian Athletes chapter was also approved by the board, on the recommendation of Snyder.
- Authorized an overnight stay for the Lincolnview wrestling team for the Division III district tournament in Dayton this weekend.
- Went into executive session to discuss personnel matters, with no action taken afterwards.
The next meeting of the Lincolnview Local Board of Education will be at 7 p.m. Tuesday, March 19, in the district conference room.