2010-10-28 / Front Page

SF Board Recognizes FFA Students

Eighty-minute executive session held for negotiations
By Chanin Rotz-Mountz STAFF WRITER

Five active participants in Southern Fulton’s FFA organization were recognized by their advisor Rebecca Mosemann as well as by members of the school board and district administration last week.

Brothers Michael and Justin Fogal along with Zack Arentz, Zack Strait and Bradley Carbaugh were congratulated for their hard work and efforts that recently netted them a first-place team finish at the All-American Dairy Judging in Harrisburg. The group appeared before the school board during its monthly meeting held Tuesday, October 19.

According to Mosemann, approximately 20 students representing the Southern Fulton FFA travelled to the Farm Show Complex to participate in the rigorous testing. Testing subjects for students included linear evaluations, ranking dairy animals by characteristics and the official written test.

The five-member team brought home a first-place finish after competing against 24 teams, said Mosemann, who believes this is a first-ever for Southern Fulton. In addition, a total of 270 students participated on an individual basis with Southern Fulton’s Justin Fogal and Strait, respectively, clinching first and second place. Arentz earned an eighth-place designation overall.

Mosemann added it was a big honor for Southern Fulton, especially considering the number of individuals who don’t even know where Warfordsburg is located.

Mosemann went on to recap some events that occurred during the Fulton County Fair involving FFA students. Even though it was his first time working with a dairy animal, Arentz was awarded the grand champion in showmanship and reserved champion in fitting. Meanwhile, Crystal Appel took grand champion in fitting.

Arentz, it was noted by Mosemann, was one of several FFA students to team up with Misty Mountain Dairy, operated by Mark and Richard Mosemann, during the months of July and August. Through the partnership with the dairy, Arentz was able to lease a heifer to show during the fair.

In other matters heard last Tuesday, lead negotiator and former district Superintendent Ralph Scott met with the board behind closed doors to discuss ongoing negotiations with the teachers’ union. The teachers have been working without a contract since June of 2010. The executive session lasted 80 minutes. No action was taken upon reconvening.

Debbie Hiller, representing the Fulton County Center for Families, presented those on hand with a copy of the Community Engagement Report Card, which details the number of children participating in Pre-K Counts and activities such as Kids Fest, Week of the Young Child, Pinwheels for Prevention as well as parenting tips. Hiller also shared information regarding the next Reality Tour that will be offered in Fulton County.

In quickly moving over the agenda within a 20-minute time frame, the board approved Melinda Shaw and William Shaw to receive a Southern Fulton diploma through the diploma recovery program.

Recording a 4-3-1 roll-call vote, the board failed to adopt the second reading of Policy 808.1, Operations, Meal. Board members Allen Morton, Timothy Mellott and Kenny Wuertenberg dissented. Fellow member Donald Whiteside abstained from voting after having missed a prior discussion on the policy.

The majority of questions raised by the board surrounded a section of the policy that stipulates if a student owes money to the cafeteria, they are unable to bring money to school and purchase from the a la carte menu. In the event a student still owes money at the conclusion of the school year, report cards are withheld. In addition, high school students may not be promoted to the next grade level until their meal accounts are settled.

Superintendent Kendra Trail noted she has spoken to a representative from Metz & Associates regarding the board’s meal policy questions. She added 95 percent of school districts associated with Metz utilize the same policy.

Individuals approved to serve in the capacity of substitute teachers were Tiffany Hendershot, Ronald Bolton, Carolyn Stermer and David Fisher, while Betty Smith received authorization to work as a substitute cafeteria worker. The individuals were approved pending the completion of necessary paperwork.

Logan Cunningham will be serving as a long-term substitute teacher for Melissa Barton beginning November 12 at a daily rate of $115.

Technology director Doug Leisher will be attending the Classrooms for the Future Coaches Boot Camp scheduled for November 9- 11 in Hershey. In addition, high school Principal Meredith Hendershot, Nicole Shank and Julie Dickerhoff will be travelling to Hershey for the Standards Aligned System training set for December 5-8.

The Parent-Teacher Association will use the high school auditorium on May 5 beginning at 7 p.m. for the annual PTA Spelling Bee.

Sen. John H. Eichelberger Jr. will offer a workshop for income opportunities for rural landowners on Saturday, November 13. Slated to run from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., the workshop will require use of the high school auditorium, cafeteria and two classrooms.

Beginning October 20 and running through April 30, 2011, the Southern Fulton Adult Basketball League will be having league play in the elementary gymnasium between the hours of 8 p.m. and 10 p.m.

The volleyball team is slated to use the high school gymnasium on November 10 from 3 p.m. to 9 p.m. to conduct a charity game to raise money for breast cancer awareness.

Softball pitching clinics will be overseen by the varsity softball team at the elementary gym on November 14 and 21; December 5, 12 and 19; January 9, 16, 23 and 30; and February 6, 13, 20 and 27.

The junior/senior high band will be competing in a band festival at Williamsburg on April 15, 16 and 17. Prior to board approval, board member Timothy Mellott again voiced his displeasure about the band not marching in the Needmore parade held each summer but being able to travel to other venues. “To me it doesn’t sit real well,” concluded Mellott.

The volleyball team will be travelling to Penn State on October 30 to participate in a volleyball game between noon and 10 p.m.

The board accepted a $25,000 grant from Cohort 3 Classrooms for the Future 21st Century Teaching and Learning with Technology Integration Coach.

Unifund will be given $3,850 by the district to perform a required accounting system update.

A total of $4.95 million will be moved from the district’s unreserved, undesignated fund balance to the unreserved, designated fund balance retroactive to June 30. The money will be used to cover future payments of bond principal and interest, increases in employee health benefits and increases in PSERS retirement rates.

Under an agenda item listed as discussion of student car insurance, board member Danny Crouse questioned liability involving crashes with student drivers. Crouse made reference to a recent crash involving a student’s personal vehicle and a school bus at the intersection of Buck Valley and Great Cove roads.

Superintendent Trail noted that in the event of a crash on district property involving a student driver, the district cannot be held liable unless dangerous property conditions contributed to the collision. The board went on to discuss whether checks could be done on tags and inspection stickers, and it was ultimately decided that all students will be required to have proof of insurance. Frequent checks for insurance will be performed by Principal Hendershot.

Crouse then questioned a line item for Ralph and Patricia Scott under the payment of bills. Crouse was informed there will continue to be a monthly line item under district expenditures that covers a portion of the couple’s healthcare as previously negotiated by the board and the former superintendent.

Morton brought up the monthly expense related to using vans on transportation routes. The discussion topic will be added to the board’s November 16 agenda.

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