VANDALIA — The Vandalia-Butler Board of Education held a moment of silence for the victims, students, and the Parkland, Florida community at the beginning of its regular meeting on Tuesday morning. Several Butler High School students sat next to their board and staff counterpoints as part of the Optimist Club Youth in Government Day.
“It has been a very difficult time both in Florida, across the nation, and locally as well,” said Superintendent Rob O’Leary. “We have had a lot of fear, rumors of threats in this school district as well as many others. I pray that God comforts and heals the families of the victims and the survivors and the students and staff who started their first day back at school yesterday. I pray the same for our nation and for our local students and families.
“We live in a broken world and there are many reasons for its brokenness. As a result there are broken, neglected, abused young people overcome with trauma in their lives that turn to these violent acts in their brokenness.”
O’Leary said that the Board has school safety on its work session on March 5 and the district is constantly reviewing its safety procedures.
“We have a great relationship with the Vandalia and Butler Township Police Departments,” he said. “For obvious reasons we won’t be discussing safety plans publicly.”
“Ultimately, in today’s world we are our brother’s keeper,” said O’Leary. “We must all be accountable to each other.”
During the business agenda, the Board voted to exit the Greater Western Ohio Conference to form a new league with nine other schools. A full story is in sports.
O’Leary presented Butler girls basketball coach Molly Bardonaro and boys coach DJ Wyrick with Aviator Achievement Awards. Both coaches were recently voted as District 9 Coaches of the Year.
The Board also approved the final version of the 2018-19 school calendar. The first day of classes for students will be August 22 and the final day of school will be May 30. Christmas break is Monday, Dec. 24 2018 through Tuesday, January 8, 2019. Spring break is April 15-19.
The Board voted to approve thee supplemental texts for Butler High School, but declined to approve The Fault in our Stars by John Green.
“This is a great book but this content I’d like to be between a parent and a student, not a teacher and student,” said Board Vice President Holly Herbst. The motion to approve the text was defeated 0-3.
In other action, the Board:
- Accepted a donation of media specialist books estimated at $25 in value from Betty Dickerson
- Approved the December 2017 financial report
- Approved an amended Certificate of Estimated Resources and Appropriations for fiscal year 2018 to reflect the district’s bond refunding
- Approved a four-year agreement for Naviance Instructional Services
- Approved media collections for Helke Elementary and Smith Middle Schools
- Approved out of state trips for the Butler baseball team and Butler Kickline
- Heard a presentation about lighting retrofit from Greg Smith of Energy Optimizers
The meeting was capped off by Ukelele performance by students from Helke Elementary.
The Vandalia-Butler Board of Education will hold a work session on Monday, March 5 at 5:30 p.m. in the Board Office Board Room. Its next regular meeting is Tuesday, March 20 at 5:30 p.m.
Both meetings are open to the public.
Reach Darrell Wacker at (937) 684-8983 or on Twitter @VandaliaButler.
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