School board retires, rehires district nurse

By David J. Coehrs -

The Wauseon Board of Education used its first summer meeting Monday to retire, then rehire the district’s longtime nurse so her experience can be retained.

Board members voted unanimously to accept the resignation submitted by Dawn Kauffman on May 31, then to reemploy her for a one-year period beginning Aug. 1. Kauffman will be paid at a lesser hourly wage of $21.89 from $25.02 for the 2017-18 school year while collecting her retirement benefits through the State Employee’s Retirement system.

According to the resolution passed, the school district approved the arrangement to avoid the cost of a search for a successor. But the board also preferred to “benefit from the extensive knowledge and experience of Mrs. Kauffman.”

In a statement, Superintendent Larry Brown said: “Today, the Wauseon Board of Education took action to rehire recent retiree Mrs. Dawn Kauffman. The district has several employees, in single, unique positions, under retire/rehire contracts. All of these employees have met the requirements to be vested in their retirement systems by working the required service years and providing full financial contributions to their respective retirement plans. The board of education generally limits the contracts to one year agreements that can be renewed with a recommendation of the superintendent and voted board action. In each case, there is a financial benefit to the board of education either through a reduction of the salary or hourly wage.”

Kauffman was originally hired in August 2003.

Other personnel action for the 2017-18 school year included: a one-year limited certificated contract to James Vaughn as middle school and high school vocal music teacher, pending clean background checks; a one-year limited athletic supplemental contract to Trent Thomas as eighth grade football coach; Hope Hodges, part-time second grade teacher, at 4.75 hours daily, $25 per hour, per a Title I grant.

Board members also approved district bus drivers Kevin Bechtel, Butch Kline, Liza Kuszmaul, Michelle Myers, Becky Peabody, and Dennis Peabody as summer bus lot employees.

In other business, the board accepted:

• A $150 donation from the Scott Neumann Insurance Agency.

• A motion approving the board’s Governing Board to allow 2017-18 membership in the Ohio High School Athletic Association.

• Board participation in the following programs: Title I; Title II-A TQU; Title III LEP – language instruction for limited English proficiency; IDEA-B – special education; and ECSE-IDEA – early childhood special education.

• A motion to approve modifications and supplemental modifications to the Fiscal Year 2017 Permanent Appropriations and Certificate of Resources.

• A motion establishing Fiscal Year 2018 temporary appropriations at 100 percent of current expenditures, except for carryover projects, established at 100 percent of the unencumbered remaining balance. Neither will cover the entire fiscal year.

In building reports:

• Primary School Principal Blake Young reported that classroom items and floors in the green wing are undergoing cleaning for the new school year.

He said Safety City for preschoolers is well underway on the school playground, with a painted town map and students learning safety rules.

The current school year ended with an award program for grades K-2. Students were rewarded for academic performance and behavior management.

The school held a bench dedication and celebration of friendship in honor of Ava Coronado, a student who died unexpectedly during the school year.

And Curt Crew helped the school develop a Twitter account for WPS families to follow – @WauseonPrimary.

• The elementary school’s Summer Reading Camp was held June 6-13. Nine students signed up to participate in reading, writing, and craft activities, and a daily self-regulation session. In a related note, students achieved their school-wide AR goal of 40,000 reading points.

Principal Theresa Vietmeier said third grade students who didn’t meet the promotion score will have a summer test window the week of July 10.

Teachers have met with the school’s RTI committee to review benchmark goals, and met with the Counseling Advisory Committee in May to bridge community, teachers, parents, and students.

Students who participated in the 21st Century Grant created glass art mosaics that will be displayed in the school library

• The middle school’s National Junior High Honor Society helped with the American Cancer Society’s Survivor Luncheon in the school’s cafetorium.

Principal Joe Friess reported that test results from state tests given in the spring will be released June 27. Printed reports will be available in the building July 26.

He also said 100 percent of students are scheduled for classes next year despite a more complicated scheduling process.

The school building remains busy with activity during the summer, with use of the gym and training for police dogs from outside communities.

• High School Principal Keith Leatherman said eight members of the Speech Team competed in the NCFL Grand National Tournament in Louisville, Ky., among over 4,000 participants. Several WHS students nearly advanced beyond the preliminary round, most notably the Duo Interpretation Team of Colton Blanton and Christian Cantu. They made it to the quarter finals, placing them among the top 24 duo interp teams in the nation.

This summer, OGT testing was held June 12-14, and EOC testing will be held July 17-28.

Freshman orientation will be Aug. 10 from 9-11 a.m. They will pick up schedules and Chromebooks at this time, and insurance protection and updated Infosnap will be required.

Schedule and Chromebook pick-up for sophomores, juniors, and seniors will be: Aug. 10, 1-3 p.m.; Aug. 11, 8 a.m.-noon and 1-3 p.m.; Aug. 14, 10 a.m.-noon and 1-3 p.m. Insurance protection and updated Infosnap will be required.

The school board entered into executive session to discuss employment of personnel. No action was taken.

By David J. Coehrs

Reach David J. Coehrs at 419-330-1812.

Reach David J. Coehrs at 419-330-1812.