After months of discussion, which began before the 2017-2018 school year started, the board announced it will be holding an informational session to inform parents of its intent to shift the grade levels around to allow the preschool to come onto the main campus, rather than being housed in a separate building at 28 River St., Wakeman.
The meeting, which will take the form of an informational event and open discussion, will take place at 6 p.m. May 30 in the middle/high school auditoria.
“The board and administration would like to open the topic again of moving the sixth grade from the elementary to the middle school/high school (building),” superintendent Rodge Wilson said.
In fact, plans already are in the works.
“We’re well on the way to getting the preschool transferred over (to the elementary building),” Wilson said. “We know what we have to do and we’re in construction right now with the transition plan. I’m speaking with (the Ohio Department of Education) about getting our license transferred over.”
Wilson said the school was planning to send a one call out to parents who would be affected by the changes a few days prior to the meeting as a reminder to attend if they wish. He said he also would like to send “personal invitations to the fifth-grade parents” to make sure they know of the opportunity to share any thoughts or concerns they may have.
“The preschool is coming to the elementary building and the sixth grade is coming over to the middle school,” he said when some in attendance at the board meeting expressed surprise.
“It’s happening. This has to go public because it’s a public conversation and we want parents to hear it from us first. ... This is going to be an open discussion, but this is going to happen. It would have to be some seriously convincing and logistic issues brought up to convince us (otherwise).”
In other business, the board nominated Jennifer Nolan and Shane Pierson for the 2018 Franklin B. Walter Outstanding Educator Awards. The board presented the award to Nolan, however, Pierson was not present to receive the award.
The board accepted Tuesday the letters of intent to resign from Pierson and his wife Laura, who served as a high school counselor and was the girls’ varsity basketball head coach before the board removed her from the position in February following allegations of “inappropriate messages” being sent to her players.
“(I’m) sad to see them go,” board member Peggy Weisenberger said.
The board also heard that the district enjoyed a successful school year.
“It’s been another wonderful year,” middle/high school principal Lisa Border told the board. “I think Western is a really great place to be and I’m proud of how we’ve served our students.”
The board heard the school is looking into starting a golf “club.”
“We’ve got at least one individual who’s interested in golf,” athletic director Ryan Falknor said.
“My personal feelings on it are that. ... If we were going to add something, that would be the thing to add. There are five schools currently in our conference that have it. I’d like to ask you to approve (someone) as golf coach at the next board meeting if I can get a letter of interest by then.”
Falknor said the season would begin in the fall and, if recognized as a club, would have full access to the OHSAA conference-sponsored events.
If we would get enough kids that are interested, we could run this as a club thing for a couple years,” he said. “I think it’s something that will have interest and I think it will be a neat thing as an opportunity for our kids.”