The Delaware City Schools Board of Education held a meeting Monday evening and approved two change orders and a number of staffing changes.
At the start of the meeting, Jason Sherman, the district’s director of facilities and transportation, outlined change orders that the board would be voting on. The first was a $2,450 reduction to a contract with Place Services, Inc. for roof work at Woodward Elementary School that was not needed. The second was a $1,726.35 increase to a contract with Place Services Inc. for additional fencing at Woodward. Sherman said the fencing is for mechanical equipment around the playground.
Sherman added that the facilities team is current going through all the boilers in the district, making adjustment and getting ready for heating season.
Treasurer/CFO Melissa Swearingen also discussed state funding and said the Fair School Funding plan is still in place, the district is still not being funded to the appropriate level as the funding plan is phased in. Swearingen said, assuming the funding plan continues, the district will be fully funded by 2027.
Superintendent Heidi Kegley said the district is “very grateful” for the implementation of the new funding formula.
“But we are still not there yet,” Kegley said. “Our taxpayers continue to support our district, but we are still not receiving the full amount of funding for all of the students that we have in the past educated and are currently educating. That message continues to be shared … as we meet with legislators.”
The district also heard a presentation from Aaron Cook, the director of secondary curriculum and assessment, who gave the board an update on the number of English Language Learners (also referred to as EL), or students who speak English as a second language, in the district.
Cook said that a decade ago the number of EL students was between 30-40 students in the district, and there were two staff members servicing that population. Cook said the number is now “fast approaching” 200 students spread across four teachers and three bilingual assistants.
Cook broke down the number by building: Carlisle Elementary has 16 EL students; Conger Elementary 13; Schultz Elementary 39; Smith Elementary 10; Woodward 30; Dempsey Middle School 40; and Hayes High School 38.
Cook said 90% of EL learners speak Spanish.
The meeting was the final meeting for Swearingen, who will leave the district next week to become the new treasurer for Hilliard City Schools. Board President Jayna McDaniel-Browning thanked Swearingen for her service to the district and said she will be missed.
“I want thank you on behalf of all of us, the board, our students, our families, our administration for all the work you’ve done here for the last 10 years,” McDaniel-Browning said. “I can’t tell you how much we appreciate you and how much you will be missed.”
Additionally, the board approved a number of resignations, including Cindy Butts, a bus driver; John Goodrich, a custodian at Conger; Tonya Grove, an accountant at Willis; Sally Hutchison, a School Aged Child Care (SACC) program assistant; Tara Kunce, a business specialist; Natasha Luce, a SACC program assistant; and Sarah McDowell, a cook/cashier at Dempsey.
The board also approved a number of employments, including Kassandra Fouts, a SACC program assistant; Mallory Garrison, an administrative assistant at Dempsey; Victoria Keesee, an educational assistant at Hayes; Kathleen Maynard, an educational assistant at Woodward; and Jean Messner, a SACC program assistant.
The board will meet next at 6 p.m. Nov. 6.
Glenn Battishill can be reached at 740-413-0903.