NH school board finalizes personnel
Kaitlyn Clay, Staff Writer, [email protected]
The North Harrison Community School Corp. had a special meeting Monday evening to approve resignations and retirements as well as appoint new positions before the start of the 2020-21 school year, which occurred today (Wednesday). Superintendent Dr. Lance Richards said they have all intentions of remaining in school with new protocols in place through the year.
“What we do from here on out has to be a community partnership,” Richards said. “What these kids do outside school can affect everyone inside the school, so we are asking that parents pre-screen their kids before sending them out; check for symptoms and monitor how they are feeling. I really believe the North Harrison community can make this work, but it is going to take all of us working together to do so.”
Currently, the North Harrison Community School Corp. has about 350 students signed up to participate in the virtual learning option, opting out of attending in-person classes for the time being. These students will participate in an asynchronous style of learning, meaning they will be required to work each day, but it will be at each child’s own pace and timing that works best for them.
Veronica Battista, school board president, said that she is extremely proud of the North Harrison staff for stepping up and preparing the school and classrooms for this unprecedented year.
“Our teachers are such an integral part of our return plan,” she said. “They are going to be on the front lines each and every day, and we want to keep them as healthy as possible, just like our students. Every decision we have made as a board has been with our students, teachers and staff all in mind. Everyone’s health is at the top of our minds.”
“We are chasing a moving target here,” board member Kerry Ingle said. “But, I can only commend the leadership of Dr. Richards and our community health officials for giving us a safe plan to return. I believe in North Harrison, and I think we are ready.”
During the meeting, the board unanimously approved the resignations and retirements of Kent Rentschler, eighth-grade football coach; Laura Norris, North Harrison Elementary School instructional assistant; Kirby Bachman, North Harrison Middle School instructional assistant; Dan Goins, Morgan Elementary School teacher; Judy Byrum, NHES instructional assistant; and Melissa Voyles, NHMS language arts teacher.
The board also unanimously approved the appointments of Jackie Belles, administration secretary; Debbie Barr, sub-caller for the 2020-21 school year; Carly Cassidy, NHES fourth-grade teacher; Kailey Adams, MES fourth-grade teacher; Lisa Jones, part-time test and grant coordinator; Stephanie Deaton, NHMS instructional assistant; Rob Higdon, girls’ golf coach; Jeff Balmer, boys’ varsity cross-country coach; Kirk Wetzel and Marcus Burgher IV, boys’ varsity soccer coaches; Laura Rainbolt and Holly Smith, girls’ varsity soccer coaches; Tony Waynescott, volunteer football coach; Preston King and Mark Wetzel, assistant football coaches; Kevin Fessel, freshman football coach; Gary Fessel, varsity football assistant; Morgan Roller, junior varsity volleyball coach; Megan Deweese; NHES instructional assistant for physical education; Jade Spalding, NHES first-grade instructional assistant; Kim Pullen, NHES Title I instructional assistant; Teresa Becker, MES virtual assistant; Starr Stuffle, North Harrison High School in-house alternative classroom; Aspen Luther, NHHS teacher assistant; Suzetta Swartz, NHHS ISS coordinator; Ashley Bruce, CNA; Cheryl Sieg, special education bus assistant; and Cyndi Sparks, part-time high school cafeteria.
The North Harrison Community School Corp. board will meet next Thursday, Aug. 13, at 7 p.m.