Cleveland Heights-University Heights Board of Education meeting highlights 5-3-22
MAY 3, 2022
- Public comments
- Bus depot bids
- Academic goals
- Resolution opposing Ohio House Bill 616
- Treasurer’s report
Present were President Malia Lewis, Dan Heintz, James Posch, Jodi Sourini, and Beverly Wright. Also present were Superintendent Elizabeth Kirby and Treasurer Scott Gainer. The meeting lasted about one hour and 45 minutes.
Board president Malia Lewis announced that the time limit for comments has been changed from five minutes to three minutes.
A community member was concerned about the district’s policy on fighting. She said it appeared that a victim in a fight is given the same punishment as the perpetrator. She also asked the district for clarification as to what a victim is supposed to do if there are no adults in the vicinity.
Bus depot bids
George Petkac reported that bids for the depot at Wiley have come in substantially higher than expected due to the increased cost of materials. The district chose to build a concrete rather than an asphalt base for greater longevity. There are also allowances for conduits for future solar-powered canopies. All board members were shocked at the price [nearly $2.8 million is cited on the contract resolution - see BoardDocs] but felt that because the increase was due to increased material costs, little could be done. Board members enumerated many reasons as to why the district should continue to run the busing operations rather than contracting it out. They also discussed how busing improves student attendance and reduces tardiness. The board voted to accept the award for the bus depot contract.
Superintendent Kirby discussed academic goals one through four and activities the district is engaged in to support those goals. This information is available in her PowerPoint report, which is available on BoardDocs.
Resolution opposing Ohio House Bill 616
Dan Heintz introduced a resolution opposing Ohio House Bill 616. The bill is a conglomeration of Florida’s “Don’t Say Gay” bill and an anti-critical race theory bill. The board unanimously passed the resolution after lengthy discussion on the damage this bill would do to the education of children. The full resolution can be found on BoardDocs.
Scott Gainer introduced a new tool he developed called Three Things. It offers a means of explaining the district finances in smaller chunks. His First Thing was that school finances will still be a shared responsibility between the state and the local community. Thing Two is that residents pay 83 percent of property taxes in the district, as there is no significant manufacturing or business contribution. Thing Three is that property taxes are paid on 35 percent of the market value of the home.
The next meeting is a work session on May 17 at 6:30 p.m. at the board of education offices.
LWV Observer: Robin Koslen.
Documents for all board meetings can be accessed from the Board of Education webpage: www.chuh.org/BoardofEducation.aspx. Go to “BoardDocs” in the menu; on BoardDocs go to “MEETINGS” in the top menu; click on “Agenda.” Board meetings are livestreamed on the district’s YouTube channel (www.youtube.com/CHUHSchools) and recorded for later viewing.