DANVILLE — School bus drivers were recognized and commended Monday at Danville’s school board meeting. The board issued a formal commendation to recognize the drivers and express its appreciation for their service.
District finances were also on the front line as Treasurer Mary Payne gave the five-year financial forecast. She recapped that forecast for the News on Tuesday. “We live in some uncertain times,” she said. “With us being funded heavily through the state, there are a lot of unknowns: We are subject to the deliberations of the Ohio General Assembly; we have no forward [state] biennial budget until July 1; the governor’s seat is up for grabs ... We are supposed to be getting 73 percent of our budget from state foundation funding, but we are actually getting less than 60 percent. I have projected a $300,000 shortfall for the current fiscal year by June 30. That means we will have to be going into our savings account. It doesn’t get any better from there. Without some significant increases in revenue — income tax, property tax or state foundation money — the only thing we can do is reduce spending.
“We are not unlike many school districts out there,” Payne continued. “There are so many unknowns out there. ... The squeeze is on. Politics is politics. And school funding is politics.”
Besides approving routine fiscal actions, the board accepted the donation of the use of a trailer from Danville United Methodist Church to haul band equipment to various events. The board also renewed life insurance coverage for staff members at the rate of $42.85 per month per employee. Payne said that reflects a premium increase of 15 cents. She said the district to date has also waived $5,948 in schools fees for free-lunch participants.
Regarding personnel, the board accepted the resignation of Jeffrey Thompson as a full-time bus driver effective Oct. 26. He will continue as s substitute bus driver for the remainder of the 2010-11 school year. The board also advanced kindergarten teacher Toni Lyons on the salary schedule due to completion of requirements. It hired Larry Ashman as eighth-grade boys basketball coach; Colt Cunningham, seventh-grade boys basketball coach; Aubrey Hazen, junior high girls basketball; Ann Henry, JV girls basketball; and Nathan Loney, freshman boys basketball coach. Michael Simmons was approved as a volunteer for the 2011 girls softball program, Shelley Ansel was added to the classified substitute list and Charlene Huffman approved to provide transportation for students to Ashland University.