March 2017 Board Brief
The School Board acknowledged the passing of Rita Holewinski, mother of Colleen Andreyo, Confidential Secretary to the Business Manager; Anne M. Verbanick, mother of Tony Verbanick, Title I Instructional Resource teacher at Barrett Elementary School; Edward F. Wellman, father of Ed Wellman, middle school math teacher; Terry J. Pachuta, former School Board member 1987-1993; Nadja McKee, mother of Ron “Butch” McKee, high school food service driver; Russell T. Gerhold, 2006 Steel Valley graduate; Christopher Bell, brother-in- law of Carrie Cope, 4th grade Park School teacher; Robert McBratney, uncle of Diana Borges; Daniel E. Ankrom, cousin of Diana Borges, Director of Pupil Personnel and Special Services; Rachel Spelman, cousin of Dianne Cain, residency/attendance checker; Margaret “Peggy” Dreshman, mother of Donna Dreshman; Curtis R. Sloan, husband of Martha Sloan, former School Board member 2003-2007; John Hoehn, grandfather of Jamie Fleck, credit recovery teacher; and Daniel R. London, retired custodian. It was moved by Mrs. Steele and seconded by Mrs. Yuhas to place an appropriate selection of books into the school libraries in their memory.
Ms. Colette Youngblood congratulated fellow Board Member Jim Bulger on his election to the Allegheny Intermediate Unit Board of Directors.
Mr. Wehrer stated that the Pennsylvania System of School Assessment (PSSA) testing begins next week for students in Grades 3-8. These tests are not the only measure of our students’ successes, but in the fact-driven world we live in, how our school district is perceived is based on standardized testing. He asked students to give their best efforts on the PSSA.
He congratulated the retirees for their dedicated years of teaching in the school district. First, Audrey Hinkle served for 24 years as an elementary teacher and an elementary principal. Audrey taught kindergarten, gifted, 1st grade, 2nd grade and 4th grade for 22 years, and served as the Elementary Principal at Park Elementary School for two years. Last year, Ms. Hinkle sponsored the Girls on the Run program for girls in 3rd, 4th and 5th grades. She has always taken an active and caring interest in the educational programs of our students, and she will be greatly missed at Park School.
Dr. Carole Policastro is retiring after 11 years of service as a Title I Reading Specialist at the elementary schools, as a fifth grade teacher and as the Director of Elementary Education. She also served as the director and as a teacher at the Summer Reading Camp, tutor in the after school tutoring program and as a member of the Student Assistance Team at Barrett School. Dr. Policastro was commended for her bravery when she went into a burning house across the street from Barrett School to rescue anyone who might have been inside. She has been a valuable resource to the school district, and we will miss her devotion and dedication to the children.
Mrs. Susan Salapa began her teaching career as a Reading Specialist. She has also taught 6th, 7th and 8th grade English Language Arts classes, and she served as a Reading Resource teacher at Park School and as an Instructional Resource teacher at Barrett School. She has devoted 21 years to teaching and inspiring students in the school district. Mrs. Salapa also dedicated her time and talent to creating high school and middle school drama programs and directing both drama clubs for several years. She has touched the lives of many children during her career as a teacher and as the director of the middle school and high school drama clubs. She helped make the middle school a wonderful learning environment for our students, and she will be greatly missed.
Mrs. Wassel has taught in every school in the district. She began her teaching career at Woodlawn Middle School teaching 6th, 7th, and 8th grade math. She also taught Pre-algebra, Algebra, Carnegie Learning Algebra, Algebra II, Accelerated Geometry, and Geometry to our secondary students. Mary Ann worked as an Elementary Academic Math Coach for five years in the elementary buildings. During her last six years of teaching, she has taught Honors Geometry and Academic Geometry in the Senior High School. She is a creative math teacher who provides a positive learning environment for her students. She is always seeking unique and new ways to help students learn. We will miss her in the Math Department.
Mr. Wehrer wished them all the best in their retirement.
Director of Pupil Personnel and Special Services Report
Mrs. Borges reported on the school calendar events:
|March 31||Teacher Clerical Day||No School for Students|
|April 5||Report Card Distribution|
|April 13-18||Spring Break||No School for Students|
|April 19||School Resumes|
Board Member David Colasante recommended that folks view the YouTube video created by the middle school staff and shared with their students to encourage them to “Do Well On That Test.” The video can be found on the Steel Valley website.
Director of Academics, Information and Technology Report
Mr. Colebank announced that grades were due Friday, and those grades will determine who will be the valedictorian, salutatorian and receive various awards for the Class of 2017. He reminded the public that there is still another grading period to determine grade point averages, and students should continue to work hard through the end of the school year.
He noted that the 2017-2018 Academic Handbook is on the agenda for approval. Once approved, the course selection sheets will be distributed to students for scheduling classes for next school year. One of the changes in the Academic Handbook is that earning “proficient” on the Keystone exams is now a pre-requisite for coursework.
The Board approved the Act 93 Administrative Compensation Agreement for the years 2015- 2016 through 2020-2021 and authorized the proper officers of the school district to affix their signatures on behalf of the school district.
The Board approved the following meeting minutes:
- February 21, 2017 worksession meeting
- February 23, 2017 regular meeting
The Board approved the following financial items:
- General Fund invoices for March 2017 in the amount of $997,390.39
- General Fund hand checks for February 2017 in the amount of $134,684.84
- General Fund Revenue Report for February 2017
- General Fund Expenditure Report for February 2017
- General Fund Balance Sheet for February 2017
- Food Service invoices for February 2017 in the amount of $44,049.03
- Food Service Revenue Report for February 2017
- Food Service Expenditure Report for February 2017
- Food Service Balance Sheet for February 2017
- Payroll Funding Transfers for February 2017
- Capital Projects Revenue Report for February 2017
- Capital Projects Expenditure Report for February 2017
- Capital Projects Balance Sheet Report for February 2017
- High School Student Activities Balance Sheet and Disbursement Report for February 2017
- Middle School Activities Balance Sheet and Disbursement Report for February 2017
- External Groups Balance Sheet and Disbursement Report for February 2017
- Athletics Fund Balance Sheet and Disbursement Report for February 2017
- Maher Duessel CPAs to perform the audit work as presented for the period ending June 30, 2017 and 2018 at a rate of $22,765.00 and $23,430.00
- Health Insurance Waiver as presented and rescinded the waiver dated February 23, 2017
- Placing out for bid the school and athletic supplies for the 2017-2018 school year
- List of remaining bus/van drivers submitted by PA Coach that are currently driving for the district in the 2016-2017 school year
- Authorized continued participation of the Steel Valley School District in the Western Pennsylvania Electricity Consortium for the purchase of electricity from Direct Energy only if the price is at or below our current pricing. This extension to the original agreement will begin on the meter read date in January 2019 for a period of twenty-four (24) months and the pricing will include all costs except distribution, and the other related delivery utility charges as contained in the original agreement
- Real estate refunds as follows:
|SRB Construction||$970.78||Lot & Block||132-D-49|
|John D. & Lisa Maddigan||$505.38||Lot & Block||131-H-6|
Exonerated the Munhall and West Homestead real estate tax collectors for the 2016 real estate taxes
The Board approved the facility rental requests, and they waived the fees for the flea market for Jamie’s Dream Team. The Board also changed the request for Griffin Field allowing Munhall Girls Softball to use the Steel Valley Youth Baseball’s requested dates on Fridays. Mr. Fetzko noted that the “Meet the Candidate” event should invite all candidates and have no endorsements of candidates.
The Board approved the following items:
- Fundraising requests as presented
- Overnight field trip for two SADD students and one chaperone to attend the National SADD Conference in Tampa, Florida, June 24-28, 2017, at no cost to the district
The Board held a second reading and adopted the policies in Section 700 of the Steel Valley Board Policy Manual.
Mr. Olson reported that our students always represent Steel Valley well by earning Top of the Shop awards, Extra Effort awards and competing in the Skills USA contest.
The Board approved the following items:
- Adopted the 2017-2018 official school calendar as presented
- 2017-2018 Allegheny Intermediate Unit Program of Services Budget totaling $2,034,004.00
- Accepted a $1,000 donation from Solutions 21, Inc., a $500 donation from GAI Consultants, Inc., and a $250 donation from Eat’n Park to be used toward the football banquet
- 2017-2018 Academic Handbook for the Senior High School
- Elementary Summer Camp beginning the week of June 26 and ending week of July 20
- Transportation Plan between the school district and the Allegheny County Department of Human Services, Office of Children, Youth and Families Agreement and authorized the appropriate officials to execute said agreement
The Board approved Campus Suite for creation of a new school district website at an up front cost of $2,600, first year cost of $12,019.20, second year cost of $10,705.80 and third year cost of $9,720.75. The costs will be paid out of the Public Relations grant. Mr. Bulger thanked Mr. Rojtas for finding Campus Suite.
The Board approved the following items:
- Early Retirement Incentive Program and Addendum for the Steel Valley Education Association as presented in the Memorandum of Understanding and rescinded the Early Retirement Incentive program approved on February 23, 2017
- Accepted, with regret, the resignation of Audrey Hinkle from the position of elementary teacher under the terms of the Memorandum of Understanding dated March 30, 2017
- Accepted, with regret, the resignation of Dr. Carole Policastro from the position of instructional resource teacher under the terms of the Memorandum of Understanding dated March 30, 2017
- Accepted, with regret, the resignation of Susan Salapa from the position of English Language Arts teacher under the terms of the Memorandum of Understanding dated March 30, 2017
- Accepted, with regret, the resignation of Mary Ann Wassel from the position of secondary math teacher under the terms of the Memorandum of Understanding dated March 30, 2017
- Accepted, with regret, the resignations of Marissa Haddad from the position of Varsity Cheerleading Coach, Meaghan Collins from the position of Assistant Cheerleading Coach andVonnie Smid from the position of Cross Country Coach effective immediately
- Appointed Mark Perhacs to the supplemental position of Varsity Boys Soccer Coach for the 2017-2018 school year contingent upon receipt of current clearances
- Family medical leave of absence for Mickey Pavasko retroactive to February 27, 2017, not to exceed 60 days in duration
- Alexis Garland as a day-to-day substitute teacher for the 2016-2017 school year at the approved daily rate, contingent upon compliance with Act 168 of 2014 and upon passing a physical exam and test for controlled substances