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School board releases eight coaches

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By Dave Bell

At the end of a 35-minute meeting – nearly half of which was spent in executive session – the Vandalia Board of Education on Tuesday honorably discharged eight non-teaching coaches.
The action, which is done every year to coaches who aren’t teaching in the district, affected the following: Joe Schaal, junior varsity boys basketball; Tammy Isaiah, seventh-grade volleyball; Allison Hall, high school volleyball and eighth-grade volleyball; Matt Shroyer, junior varsity wrestling; Misty Thompson, junior high cheerleading; Lucas Benning and Austin Wollerman, freshman/sophomore boys basketball (a split position); and Dana Kern, high school tennis.
The board has the option to rehire those coaches for the upcoming school year.
The board’s executive session was to discuss personnel issues, as well as safety and security.
In other action, the board accepted the resignation of Michelle Otto as high school cheerleading coach and approved the mowing bid submitted by Todd Whitten. His bid was $500 per time for mowing all of the district’s lawns.
Superintendent Rich Well told the board that the district’s finances are “in solid shape, given the hand we’ve been dealt.”
As of April 1, the district has a total fund balance of $5.34 million. In the four operating accounts over which the board has control of the spending (education, building, transportation and working cash), the district still maintains a $4.13 million balance. It has received 84 percent  ($13.23 million) of the total budgeted revenues for the fiscal year that ends June 30, and has made 70 percent ($11.96 million) of the budgeted expenditures.
“Our projected revenue is figured on the actual funding we’re getting from the state,” Well said. “That’s an 11 percent cut in state aid from the original amount.”
The state aid is making payments to districts that are prorated at 89 percent of the full payment because of revenue shortfalls at the state level.
During the superintendent’s report, Well noted several dates that have been set: baccalaureate is Wednesday, May 14; graduation is Saturday, May 17; the Memorial Day holiday is Monday, May 26; final exams will be June 3-4; and the final day for teachers is June 5.
Other events coming up include: Vandalia Junior High School parents’ night on Thursday, April 24, at 6 p.m.; Vandalia Elementary School’s Fun Fair on Friday, April 25, VCHS prom on Saturday, April 26; VCHS awards day on Monday, May 5, at 9 a.m.; Vandalia will host the junior high conference track meet on Tuesday, May 13; and the VJHS band spring concert on Thursday, May 15.
Nick Casey, director of the Okaw Area Vocational Center, reported that the center’s enrollment for the 2014-15 school year currently stands at 295 students, and Pana has not yet enrolled its students. Thus, the total will be well over the 270 enrolled during the current year.