Project Lead the Way introduced at Milan

Beth Rumsey, Staff Writer

The first order of business for the November meeting of the Milan School Board was information on Project Lead the Way. Project Lead the Way, a national not-for-profit organization, assists schools in providing curriculum in engineering and technology. According to Superintendent Andrew Jackson, Milan School Corporation has received two grants totaling $50,000 to offset start-up costs. “It’s a good program,” stated Superintendent Jackson. He also mentioned that he knew of three students who went through the program and received full scholarships to Rose-Hulman College. Student interest surveys will be sent out in December. Board members will be provided with more information at the December board meeting.

Next on the agenda was the Indiana Bond Bank Resolution. According to Superintendent Jackson, the school corporation borrowed $1.4 million last year; and will need to borrow $963,000 for the general fund this year. The interest paid by the corporation is between 1.5% and 2%. When asked how long the school corporation has been borrowing money, Jackson replied since 2000. This is due to the county draw money being late. “Our goal is to eventually get the operating balance up to 10% of the budget,” said Jackson. The board passed the bond resolution unanimously.

The board accepted the donation of a wooden inlay Indian wall hanging by John and Pat McKittrick. The artwork was purchased in North Carolina and later discovered while cleaning for a barn sale. It is on display in the superintendent’s office.

In the superintendent’s report, Jackson commented on the parent/teacher conferences held in October. According to Jackson, the elementary school had 92% of parents attending. The middle school had an average attendance, a little lower than last year. The high school had 62% of parents attending the conferences. “This was outstanding participation,” Jackson stated.

In other business:

• The board agreed to allow St. Nicholas School to use the middle school cafeteria on December 18.

• Ninth grade sponsors Joan Kennett and Paige Wade requested permission to hold a Hoop Shoot and Split the Pot fundraiser at the boys’ and girls’ home varsity games. This was approved unanimously.

• The National Junior Honor Society received permission to hold a Penny War fundraiser with proceeds going to the Council of Churches to purchase Christmas gifts for the less fortunate.

• The board approved field trip requests from Joan Kennett’s biology and world geography class to the Newport Aquarium and the 4th grade field trip to the Aronoff Center.

• The board will sponsor the girls’ game against Batesville and the boys’ game against Lawrenceburg in the Score for Scholars Program to benefit the Milan Scholarship Foundation.

• In a letter to the superintendent, high school Principal Richard Healy recognized the high school Spell Bowl team for outstanding performance at Greensburg High School on October 15.

• The board accepted the resignation of middle school cross country coach Michael Meyer; and high school KEY team member Anita Boggs.

• The following employment recommendations were accepted unanimously by the board: Melissa Mitchell as the high school agriculture teacher; Teresa Patz as a KEY team member; Jerrid McDonald for the 5th and 6th grade volunteer assistant boys’ basketball coach; Ray Vinup, Jr. and Charles Dudgeon as substitute custodians; and Rena Gardner as a substitute cafeteria worker.

• Approval was given for payment of a water line leak repair and the cost of a speaker to come.

A petition, signed by 86 students, was submitted to the board with some concerns with a section in the student handbook about weighing AP courses on a 5.0 scale for college credit. According to a student attending the meeting, there are students taking high school diploma courses that have a higher class ranking than those who are taking the AP courses, which are more difficult. This affects how students receive scholarships. Superintendent Jackson stated he will look into the matter.

The meeting adjourned with the board members wishing the winter sports teams good luck. “We have good athletes,” said Randy Kirk. Tim Tuttle wanted to thank Pat and John McKittrick for their donation. All board members were in attendance at the meeting: Kirk, Tuttle, Edward Amberger, Gregory Lewis and David Voss.

The next regularly scheduled school board meeting will take place December 17 at 7:00 p.m. at the superintendent’s office.

Indian artwork donated

Milan Superintendent Andrew Jackson poses beside the Indian artwork that was donated to the school corporation recently by John and Pat McKittrick. It hangs in the superintendent's office.