AW Schools Welcomes New Staff Members

Anthony Wayne Local Schools welcomed new teachers and staff members during the August 8 board meeting. Pictured are (from left) back row, Michelle Reid, high school counselor; Kayla Szypula, middle school intervention specialist; Jordan Lee, high school math teacher; Liz Davis, Whitehouse fourth-grade teacher; Mercedes McNett, Waterville intervention specialist; Sarah Tapley, high school nurse; Emily Ellerbrock, Waterville intervention specialist and Diana Sporysz, Whitehouse fourth-grade teacher; and front row, Stephanie Huntley, middle school counselor; Tricia Yoho, middle school intervention specialist; Alexandra Walton, junior high intervention specialist; Rachael Beavers, middle school math and social studies teacher; Jillian Ledwedge, Waterville intervention specialist; Elena Boyle, Waterville fourth-grade teacher; Kelsea Pickens, intervention specialist and Rebekah Hrcka, school psychologist. Not pictured: Chris Martin, high school technology and Justin Reckner, high school math. PHOTO COURTESY OF REBECCA SCHWAN, ANTHONY WAYNE LOCAL SCHOOLS

BY KAREN GERHARDINGER | MIRROR REPORTER — As Anthony Wayne Local Schools gears up for its Thursday, August 18 first day of school, several new hires were approved during the August 8 school board meeting.

Justin Reckner and Jordan Lee were hired to replace outgoing math teachers Amanda Cutway and Michelle Klear at the high school. New cafeteria/ playground aides include Bridget Juhasz at the middle school and Nicholas Siefker at the junior high. Trans-portation welcomes Mary Jane Hughes as a bus aide and Robert Kohntopp as a bus driver. Veronica Aiello and Brenda Hendricks will serve as special education aides in the district. Ray Greene, who served as an intern in the treasurer’s department this summer, is the new treasurer’s assistant.

In addition to replacing those who have resigned or retired, the district added new positions to meet the needs of the students. During the June board meeting, several new hires were approved, including five intervention specialists, a counselor and two special education aides.

“We are spending about $200,000 more in personnel than last year,” said Superintendent Dr. Jim Fritz. “It will cost more, but it’s something we felt we needed to do in the best interest of students and staff and based on our student numbers.”

During the meeting, the board also:

• Thanked the staff involved in summer educational programs, including summer school, Camp Invention, credit recovery and ACT prep. A total of 764 students were involved in summer programming.

• Approved a payment of $9,000 to World Risk Management for cyber insurance.

• Listened to an update on the district’s strategic plan, which began with community input and focuses on core beliefs, vision and mission statements, goals and strategies. The next step, Fritz said, is to ask staff for input on how to achieve specific goals.

• Heard that The Collaborative is working on a facilities plan. The community and staff will be consulted later this year to provide input.

• Heard an update from Fritz on the number of levies on the ballot this fall. Anthony Wayne is asking for a 2.28-mill, 10-year renewal to bring in about $3 million that “we can’t afford not to have,” he said. Also on the ballot in local communities: police and fire levies in Monclova township, a fire levy in Providence Township and a referendum to repeal an income tax credit decision by Whitehouse Village Council.

• Learned that staff will be undergoing training in the days prior to the first day of school, including school safety plans.

• Approved the 40 bus routes that will traverse about 3,000 miles a day to transport not only Anthony Wayne students but also those in parochial schools.

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