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Meals to cost 10 cents more at N. Harrison

Cost of lunches and breakfast will increase by 10 cents beginning next month at all the cafeterias in the North Harrison Community School Corp.
The increase was approved Monday night after Supt. Monty Schneider provided the five school trustees with details about the lunch accounts at North Harrison High School, North Harrison Middle School, North Harrison Elementary School and Morgan Elementary School. (Students at North Harrison Upper Elementary School eat at the middle school.)
‘We have not raised our prices since about July 2001,’ Schneider said.
For the 2001-02 and 2002-03 school years, lunch prices were $1.65 at the elementary schools, $1.75 at the middle school cafeteria, and $1.85 at the high school.
Schneider suggested Monday that the trustees consider increasing prices by at least five cents for two reasons: a net increase of about $5,000 on bid items, and a possible increase in salaries of cafeteria workers.
Bids for bread products were about $10,000 higher than last year, while milk bids were about $5,000 less than the previous year, Schneider said.
Those expenses don’t take into consideration other food items the schools purchase for breakfast and lunch.
Also, Schneider said, ‘You don’t know how much the salary increase will be.’
Currently, just under $300,000 is paid to cafeteria staff.
Typically, North Harrison gives its employees the statewide average increase plus an additional three-quarter percent.
‘I think it would be fair to say salaries will be lower statewide’ this year, Schneider said.
While the cafeteria accounts currently have balances, benefits for the first six months of 2003 have not been expended.
‘We’re running good balances, except for the high school,’ said Schneider, who added that it’s harder to make money at that level because most students opt to purchase a la carte items rather than the traditional lunch tray.
‘That doesn’t mean the high school cafeteria manager is doing a bad job,’ he said. ‘They usually have to give a larger serving, too, because high school kids typically eat more.’
The trustees considered increasing meals by five cents each, which would have raised about $16,000 annually, but opted for the 10-cent increase because of the uncertainty of salaries. The approved increase should generate an additional $32,000.
‘A school lunch is still the best buy that you can find,’ Schneider said.
In other matters Monday night, the trustees:
‘ Heard from Don Hanen regarding the energy savings program the school corporation adopted. Hanen will make a more in-depth formal presentation, possibly at the October meeting.
‘ Adjusted meeting dates for August and September. The regular meeting next month will be Wednesday, Aug. 13, while September’s regular meeting will be on Wednesday, the 17th. A budget hearing was set for Wednesday, Sept. 3. All three meetings will begin at 7:30 p.m. in the middle school library.
‘ Entered into an agreement with the Lanesville Community School Corp. that would lend support to its distance learning program. The agreement, which does not cost North Harrison anything, would assist Lanesville in obtaining grants for the program. The South Harrison Community School Corp. also is being asked to enter the agreement with Lanesville.
‘ Heard a brief presentation from parent Gail Williams who shared information about $200,000 of weight-room equipment that Perry Central Junior-Senior High School received at no cost by participating in a National Fitness Foundation program. The school board had Williams pass the article on to NHHS principal Kelly Simpson.
‘ Reelected the three officers who served the past year: Kathy Mott as president, Leslie Robertson vice president and Ronald Goldman secretary.
‘ Accepted the resignation of Kenny Spencer as a sixth grade lay boys basketball coach.
‘ Approved the appointments of James Voyles as a volunteer girls assistant basketball coach, and Ethan Maple as lay high school soccer coach, succeeding Barry Lagg, who resigned last month.
‘ Accepted a $500 donation from Uhl Truck Sales to the NHHS boys basketball program.
Last month’s personnel matters included accepting resignations from Donna Wenning, library assistant at NHHS, Patricia McAhron, NHHS math teacher, Shirley Burgher, English and French teacher at NHHS, and Connie Burnham, North Harrison Elementary School teacher, all effective at the end of the 2003-04 school year; Barry Geltmaker, position of volunteer assistant girls basketball coach and head lay girls softball coach, and Jane Dunn as cafeteria worker at Morgan Elementary.
Three appointments were approved last month: Tina Purcell and Jason Jones, both as teachers at North Harrison Upper Elementary School, and Paul Byrne at volunteer assistant girls basketball coach at NHHS.