The Delaware City Schools Board of Education, which held its final meeting of the year Monday, bid farewell to Board President Frances O’Flaherty and approved a chiller replacement at Carlisle Elementary School.
O’Flaherty has been on the board since 2003, but she decided not to seek reelection last month. Voters on Nov. 2 selected Melissa Harris to succeed O’Flaherty on the board, and Harris will be sworn in at the board’s first meeting in January.
Kegley presented a certificate to O’Flaherty recognizing her “extraordinary leadership and outstanding contributions” to the school community, and she added a brick engraved with O’Flaherty’s name will be placed at the entrance to Cornell Stadium in her honor.
Members of the board took a moment to thank O’Flaherty for her service.
Board Vice President Michael Wiener, who has been on the board since 2018, said it had been “a pleasure” to serve with her for his first term.
“Your dedication to the students and the district has shown through during these last two years, even with a lot of opposition to some of the decisions we’ve had to make,” Wiener said. “I do really appreciate the time, and I’m grateful for everything you’ve shared with me during (my term).”
Jayna McDaniel-Browning, who has been a board member since 2014, said she and O’Flaherty spoke when Browning first joined the board.
“We talked about boardsmanship and everything that goes along with it,” McDaniel-Browning said. “(You’ve) led with kindness, intelligence and good humor. We haven’t always agreed on everything, but I’ve never doubted that at heart, you have the best interest of our school, our students and our staff.”
Matt Weller, who has been a board member since 2008, thanked O’Flaherty for her time on the board.
“It takes a special person to do this job for many, many years…,” Weller said. “I surely commend you for your service to the district and to the community. Thank you very much for your service.”
Board member Ted Backus, who has served since 2008, said he will miss O’Flaherty.
“In the beginning you and I didn’t see eye-to-eye many times,” Backus laughed. “It has been a pleasure working with you, and we will miss you on the board.”
O’Flaherty said serving on the board has been “a pleasure and an honor.”
“I appreciate having been elected so many times, but it’s time for me to step down,” O’Flaherty said. “I look forward to seeing what Ms. Harris will do.”
Additionally, the board approved a $233,634 contract with EliteAire to replace the chiller and air handler at Carlisle Elementary School.
In other business, the board approved a number of staffing changes, including the retirements of Cindy Degler, a custodian at Hayes, and Siobhan Johnson, an educational assistant at Hayes; and the resignation of Carrie Abahazi, the library media specialist assistant at Carlisle.
The board also signed off on the hirings of Katrina Heckathorn, a cook/cashier at Hayes, and Bryon Link, a bus driver for the district
Glenn Battishill can be reached at 740-413-0903 or on Twitter @BattishillDG.