Business manager to resign

BLOSSBURG – With only a month left before Southern Tioga School District superintendent hoped to be able to present estimated cost and savings figures along with the two plans that have been developed to consolidate the district’s schools, and possibly close a school, business manager Laura Perry tendered her resignation for another position.

According to Superintendent Keith Yarger, Perry told him in July that she was leaving to take a business manager position at Athens Area School District in Bradford County.

Yarger listed her reason for leaving as the Athens district being closer to where she lives.

Perry originally came from Troy School District when the district’s long-time business manager Jim Rakoski retired in 2010.

Yarger said that the position is being advertised and will remain open until Aug. 15.

Some applications have been received, but he has not looked at them yet, he said.

Amy Miller, of Liberty Township asked him if the public is “truly going to get the numbers next month,” to which Yarger responded “I hope so.”

“I don’t feel comfortable with the numbers at this time. I’d rather wait a month and be sure, than give it to you now and be unsure,” he added.

Intermediate Unit 17 business managers will be working with the administrative team, he said.

“All the numbers we have have come directly from her (Perry) and the administrative team and I are reviewing them,” he said.

Miller went on to say that she feels “a little let down.”

“Will the delaying of the numbers delay the vote (on consolidation and potential school closings)?” she asked.

Yarger said the vote would be delayed by one month to January 2014, but that it would be “beneficial to give the newly seated board members that one month to digest things.”

In other business, the board heard from Director of Curriculum and Technology Brenda Freeman about the results of Keystone Exams taken by 11th grade students in the spring.

“Beginning in 2017 they will be required to pass the Keystones in biology, literature and algebra 1 to meet state requirements,” she said.

The results will be posted on the district’s website, this week, Freeman said.

“Remediation courses will be required in all three schools. Students will be placed in a time spot for the courses this fall and the students must take the course before retesting. If they don’t make it again, they will have the opportunity to take a project (chosen by the state) to make graduation requirements. We want to give our students the best opportunity before that final exam. They will be scheduled to take the remediation courses this fall,” she said.

Educator Effectiveness evaluations also will be implemented beginning with this school year, Yarger said.

In a memo to the board, Yarger explained that the state Department of Education will provide a document which must be used by the district, and the rating tool currently in use by the district is out of compliance.

He recommended the board formalize the district’s commitment to the new Educator Effectiveness rating tool and provide written notification to all staff at the beginning of the school year of the change.