Graham board approve staff changes


ST. PARIS – The Graham Local Schools board approved a resignation and a realignment of a couple of staff positions at its Monday meeting.

The school board accepted Graham Curriculum Director Becky Gerardi’s resignation Monday, effective July 31, 2017. In her resignation letter, she does not give a reason for her resignation.

“My position has given me great pleasure in working with staff and students over the past few years. I am appreciative of the opportunities for learning provided during my tenure with the school district,” she wrote.

Gerardi’s current salary is $81,675, Treasurer Judy Geers said.

With her resignation, the school board rearranged administrative positions. The board approved abolishing the director of curriculum position, effective July 31, 2017. It approved the creation of two Education Coordinator positions and a Network Coordinator position, beginning with the 2017-18 school year. It created a revised 2017-18 Compensation Schedule for Administration and Network Coordinator.

“With the resignation of the curriculum director, we are now going to focus work at both the elementary level and secondary levels with specific individuals who can specialize in these areas,” Superintendent Kirk Koennecke said.

The network coordinator position is a new technology support role, which replaces a maintenance technician role. The current maintenance technician, Steven Coates, is retiring June 1, 2017. The board accepted his retirement resignation Monday.

High School Principal Joe Hurst’s contract was amended to move him from the principal slot to one of those Education Coordinator positions for the 2017-18 school year. His salary will not change, Geers said.

There will be a search for a new high school principal beginning Feb. 15, Koennecke added. Hurst’s responsibilities will change in August.

The board also approved new contracts for Director of Operations Don Burley, Payroll Supervisor LuAnn King, Elementary Principal Chad Miller, and Director of Student Services Emily Smith, all beginning with the 2017-18 school year. All the new contracts are three years, except for King’s, which is a two year contract. Burley’s salary will increase from $78,520 to $82,420; King’s salary will increase from $40,872 to $42,120; Miller’s salary will increase from $84,710 to $90,900 and will include an additional 10 contract working days; and Smith’s salary will increase from $75,670 to $79,810 and include an additional five contract working days, Geers said.

The board approved changes to Koennecke’s contract, adding an annual $300 stipend to defray costs for personal phone use; adding 20 days of vacation per contract year, and allowing up to five of those days if unused to be exchanged for cash at the per diem rate. If not carried over, the five days would be added to the next year’s vacation total to use in the subsequent year only.

Geers said the vacation change limits the number of accrued unused days that can be carried forward at the end of each contract year. In the past, vacation days could accumulate up to 60 days.

The board approved a contract change offering additional long-term disability gap coverage in the amount not to exceed $1,470 annually from an out of network provider paid for by the board. The board also approved paying for memberships to OHSPRA, BASA and AASA, and the selection of one national conference.

All of the changes reflect benefits afforded to other superintendents in their contracts, Koennecke and Geers said.

In other action, the board:

•Accepted donations of $11.17 from OhioPyle Prints to the district; $2,000 from an anonymous donor to the Graham Robotic Curriculum; and $2,000 from James and Kathy Zerkle to the Graham Robotic Curriculum.

•Approved one-year limited contracts for Tutors for Individualized Services (Home Instruction/Intervention Tutors/Summer School Physical Education) for the 2016-17 school year.

•Approved hiring Middle School/High School Vocal Music Director and Musical Producer/Director Polly Trenor for the 2016-17 school year.

•Approved hiring Varsity Baseball Head Coach Jay Lewis and Musical Instrumental Director Allen Wilbur for the 2016-17 school year.

•Approved overnight trips for the OHP/Graham BPS to the BPA State Leadership Conference in Columbus, Ohio, from March 16-17, 2017; and the eighth grade Washington D.C. trip to Washington, D.C., from Nov. 17-22, 2017.

•Approved the purchase of two International 72-passenger school buses from Rush Transportation, one for $85,120 (with additional storage boxes under the buses for trips), and the other for $84,010, for a total of $169,130.

•Accepted the resignation of Building Secretary Vicki Kueterman for retirement, effective Aug. 1, 2017.

By Casey S. Elliott

[email protected]

Casey S. Elliott may be reached at 937-652-1331 ext. 1772 or on Twitter @UDCElliott.

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