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Keys to public raise school security concerns


November 26, 2013 | 10:50 AM

The topic that received the most discussion at last week's meeting of the Lanesville Community School Corp. Board of Trustees didn't appear on the posted agenda, which is generally the guideline the board uses in regard to public comments.

Two Lanesville residents came to the meeting to discuss whether or not the corporation's workout area could be re-opened to the public. One of the residents described the convenience of the facility, and she and others believed it was so important to keep open that they would be willing to pay more for the use of the room.

Starting last year, for a $5 fee (for the cost of the key to the area), the corporation allowed the Lanesville community to use the workout facilities anytime students were not having classes.

Supt. Steve Morris said the mostly unrestricted access could potentially allow someone with ill intent to enter the school and vandalize the property or worse. With increased security at schools across the nation, it was decided to discontinue access to the public until the corporation could figure out how to allow the public to use the facility while keeping the school secure at the same time.

"We've been talking about options," Morris said. "Anyone with access to the facility can get into the building during the school day. We have to put up a different type of door or use a different type of key."

Morris said the corporation has had 113 keys made since the facility was opened to the public, and he estimated 15 to 20 people use the facility on a regular basis. The facility was "closed" after a break-in at the campus on Oct. 21.

The board said it was exploring options and hopes to make a decision on how to address security in the area.

In another matter, the board accepted four donations from the community: $697 from Jill Wolfe from a 31 fundraiser for junior high cheerleaders, $331.80 from Melissa Sprigler from Mary Kay Products for junior high cheerleaders, $100 from Franklin Township Athletic Club to be split equally between the elementary and high school libraries and $200 to the Encouraging Lanesville Families (ELF) program from Franklin Township Athletic Club.

Later, the board approved the sale of an old mid-bus to St. John's Lutheran School for $975.

Regarding ELF, during his principal's report, Morris said the 2013 project will start after Thanksgiving and that already 37 students' families have requested help, which is up from past years.

During the superintendent's report, Morris said he's sending a technology survey to staff members regarding the use of technology in the classroom and how digital curriculum could be used in the classroom.

"We're looking at a one-to-one (laptop program) for next year. In order to meet the timeline, we want to put the device in the hands of teachers for the second semester and let them play with it and get some professional development in," Morris said.

Morris went on to say that the program would be funded through riverboat dollars the corporation receives from the county. As of yet, no device has been decided upon, Morris said.

The board also approved several personnel positions: Bob Winstead as varsity girls' basketball assistant coach, Whitley Hare as unpaid volunteer junior high cheerleading assistant, Paula Kiger-Hess as unpaid volunteer elementary cheerleading assistant coach, Jerrett Beach as freshman boys' basketball coach, Kayla Smith as unpaid volunteer girls' basketball assistant coach, Cameron Teeter as unpaid volunteer baseball coach, Jordon Sizemore as baseball assistant coach and Tyler Duff as junior high girls' tennis coach. The board also approved Penny Schmelz as corporation treasurer and Tina Walther as assistant corporation treasurer (payroll).

Twitter: @_alanstewart

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