Superintendents from St. Joseph County’s nine school districts are being asked to consider the validity of a countywide school millage request.
During a meeting involving school board members from across the county last week at Burr Oak High School, the question was revisited after being originally raised during a countywide meeting in October.
While the amount potentially being sought has not been discussed, the cost to stage a countywide request was the focus of last week’s meeting.
Pete Bennett, a member of the Three Rivers Community Schools Board of Education, said the cost to stage a campaign to promote such a request in a non-election year would range from $88,000 to $176,000. That includes $30,000 to conduct a special election in a non-election year, such as 2013.
A simple survey to gauge support from the public would cost about $16,000, a cost the St. Joseph County Intermediate School District offered to cover.
Superintendents have been asked to render their opinions by the end of the month on whether to continue to pursue the matter.
A kick-off and planning session for the 2013 Sturgis Relay for Life took place Wednesday at the Sturgis VFW.
Fundraising efforts for the June event were to begin with the meeting.
The Sturgis Relay for Life, which takes place June 7 at Sturgis High School, will include the survivors lap, the luminaire ceremony and a fight-back ceremony.
More details about the June event may be obtained by calling 625-6515.
The two largest school districts in St. Joseph County conducted their re-organizational meetings this week.
In Sturgis, Geoff Smith was named president of its board of education. Tom Robertson was assigned vice president and Ann Bird secretary. Ray Sterling will serve as treasurer.
In Three Rivers, board members returned Susan Schmidtendorff as president, Mike Bosma as vice president and Waneta Truckey as secretary. Pete Bennett will serve as treasurer.
An English teacher at Sturgis High School has been named the recipient of the 2012 John E. Oster Award.
Stephanie Harker Schau, a 1985 graduate of Sturgis High School, was presented the award during a Monday luncheon sponsored by the Sturgis Rotary Club. Created by Oster’s widow, Jo Ellen, the John E. Oster memorial recognizes teaching excellence in Sturgis Public Schools.
Schau is the advisor of the Trojan Times high school newspaper and teaches dual-enrollment and Advanced Placement classes in English language arts.
Sturgis Public Schools Superintendent Tom Langdon said an email he sent to parents over the weekend served as a reminder that the district employs practices to make its school buildings as safe as they can be.
The district’s second-year superintendent said the email was in light of the shooting spree that killed 20 children at a Connecticut elementary school last week.
Langdon said building principals met before school Monday to review protocol in the event students ask about the incident or show signs of stress or fear as a result of the incident at Sandy Hook Elementary.
Ironically, Langdon said, the district staged a lockdown drill at one of its buildings last week. He said teachers and staff will likely realize the value of such drills in the future.
Congressman Fred Upton has announced his service academy nominees for the 2013-2014 academic year.
According to a media release, the nominees have excelled both academically and athletically at their respective schools and have gone through an extensive selection process.
The selection process included an interview with Upton’s Academy Advisory Board, which is comprised of local community leaders. Upon approval by the board, the students’ names were then passed on to Upton, who then officially nominated the students to our nation’s military academies.
The individual academies will make the final decisions on military appointments. All applicants to military academies must be nominated by a member of Congress, the president, or vice president.
Area students nominated by Upton are Kathryn Hawkins, of Three Rivers High School, for the U.S. Air Force Academy, and William Fry, of Sturgis High School, for the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy.