Miami East BOE discusses levy renewal

By Matt Clevenger

For Miami Valley Today

CASSTOWN — The Miami East Board of Education is moving forward with plans to place a .8-mil permanent improvement levy on the ballot for renewal this November.

“We have a permanent improvement levy that is coming up for renewal,” district treasurer Lisa Fahncke told the BOE during their regularly scheduled meeting on Monday, April 15. “That is our .8-mil levy that we have had on since 2010. Our first opportunity for renewal would be November of this year; we would have two opportunities thereafter, but I would like the board to consider putting that on the ballot this year so it gives us every opportunity to get that passed.”

“All of our other levies are continuing,” she said, “so this is the only vote-able levy we have out there.”

The levy passed the last time it came up for a vote, back in 2014. “November of 2014 was the last time that it passed,” Fahncke said. “We had 1,646 votes for the levy; we had 1, 210 votes against it.”

“I would say our community has been very supportive when it comes to permanent improvement,” district superintendent Dr. Todd Rappold said. “They see first-hand; permanent improvement is probably the most visible levy. I think folks are greatly appreciative that with the permanent im-provement we always have a five-year plan.”

“If you do a $20,000 seal on the parking lot, that’s much more effective than letting it get away from you and having to spend hundreds of thousands of dollars to repave,” he said.

“We use the permanent improvement funds for expenditures such as instructional technology, computer equipment, school buses, and building and grounds repair,” Fahncke said. “There are two steps that we legally have to take; at the June meeting I will bring the resolution to proceed.”

In other business, the board also recognized the Miami East-MVCTC FFA chapter, which recently held its 60th annual parent-member banquet. More than 300 parents, members and guests attended the banquet, which was held at Miami East High School.

“It was a very enjoyable evening,” Dr. Rappold said of the banquet. “We had close to 100 students recognized at all four grade levels; some past graduates came back to receive recognition from state FFA. We’re very appreciative of community members who no longer have kids at Miami East but still come out to support the FFA.”

Board members also approved the hiring of high school science instructor Melissa Beal, and voted to accept the resignation of high school math teacher Megan Arnold. The board also voted to continue the district’s use of e-calamity days to conduct classes electronically if schools are forced to close for too many days out of the school year.

“At the junior high, we had close to a 98 perccent completion rate for three days,” Dr. Rappold said. “This year, I didn’t receive a single phone call from a singe parent in the district who couldn’t find the packet.”

“It’s taken a little while to figure out how much is too much and how much is not enough,” he said of the e-calamity day assignments. “They do a nice job of adjusting those based on where we’re at in the school year, so it’s meaningful. Teachers spend a great amount of time readjusting that.”

The Miami East BOE’s next regularly scheduled meeting will be held at 7 p.m. Monday, May 20 at Miami East High School.