2009-05-16 / Top News

Island School Seniors Earn Scholarships; Board Seeks OK for Vinyl Siding

By Karen Gould

Building, Grounds Committee Report

Mackinac Island Public School will repair the roof on the storage building and wants to replace wood with vinyl siding, Building and Grounds Committee chair Larry Rickley told the school board at its Thursday, April 23, meeting. The board also approved teacher Vicki Urman's buyout, learned of a new athletic alliance with Put-In-Bay, Ohio, and announced scholarships to be awarded to graduating seniors.

Superintendent Roger Schrock will seek approval for the vinyl siding from the Mackinac Island Planning Commission.

The board began discussing the storage building repairs in the fall of 2007. At that time, the price to cover the shed with vinyl siding was considered too costly.

Two additional lights will be added to the west side of the building after school is dismissed in May. The committee also is looking into getting stronger closures for the two outside doors, which do not close well in the winter. If the closures cannot solve the problem, the doors will have to be replaced.

In the winter, seven cedar trees at the front of the school building are blocking sunshine and creating an icing problem. The trees will be removed except for one that stands to the right of the walkway. The committee will monitor the area over the course of the next winter. If the remaining tree creates a problem, said Mr. Rickley, it also could be removed.

The four-foot by eight-foot school sign in front of the building needs a border and Dr. Schrock will contact Phil Porter of Mackinac Island State Park to see if creating a wrought iron frame could be a project undertaken during the Blacksmith Convention on the Island this summer.

In other business, the board approved a $116,000 buyout agreement with kindergarten teacher Vicki Urman, which includes 1.5 times her annual salary, totaling about $96,000, and one year of medical insurance premiums, estimated to cost about $20,000.

Mrs. Urman will leave the district at the end of the school year. A new kindergarten teacher will be hired to replace her.

New this fall, Mackinac Island will compete in volleyball and basketball against the school on Put-In-Bay, Ohio, an island in Lake Erie. The volleyball teams will play on Mackinac Island October 8 and the basketball teams will meet on Put-In-Bay in early December.

Nearly $18,650 in scholarships will be awarded to seven Mackinac Island Public School seniors, the school board learned. The John Franks Scholarship will award $2,500 to Michi Mullings, Danielle Wightman, Shay Mosley, Fuller Cowell, and Darcy Brodeur-Bunker and $1,500 to Arial Leeper. From The Boys of Mackinac Scholarship, Darcy Brodeur-Bunker will receive $500, and Michi Mullings, Fuller Cowell, Shay Mosley, Danielle Wightman, and Robert Chambers will each receive $250. The Stella King Scholarship will award $500 to Robert Chambers and $400 each to Danielle Wightman, Michi Mullings, Arial Leeper, Shay Mosley, Fuller Cowell, and Darcy Brodeur-Bunker.

School board members serving on the scholarship committee are Sara Chambers, Jason St. Onge, and Larry Rickley.

Other scholarships are awarded by Little Stone Church and the Mackinac Island Community Foundation.

The issue of school security arose again, when Mr. St. Onge noted that people using the school after hours for drop-in basketball games have easy access to the entire school. He said he is also concerned that street shoes are being warn on the newly refinished gymnasium floor. He said he does not think the school should be used as a community center.

Similar worries were expressed last spring.

Girls volleyball coach Terrie Armstrong said she keeps the doors locked while the team practices and suggested that be a solution for the basketball team, too.

Dr. Schrock said basketball coach Jim Fisher will attend the May meeting for further discussion.

As a follow up to his evaluation last month, Dr. Schrock said the board should develop two or three measurable goals to be presented at the May meeting. The board's goals, he said, will serve to direct his goals, which would be presented to the board for consideration by the June meeting.

"The process is kind of an inverse pyramid," he said, "where the Board of Education will develop its goals and objectives for the next year. Then, the superintendent really needs to tie into that so that when it comes to evaluation time late winter, early spring of the next year, then you can hold my feet to the fire, if you will, and say, 'OK, did you meet those goals?'"

The board will review the Eastern Upper Peninsula Intermediate School District (ISD) budget for action at its next meeting in May. The ISD is budgeting $3.4 million for its general fund, $6.5 million for special education, and about $728,000 for its cooperative technology fund. It is expected to borrow more than $302,000 from its fund balance to cover expenditures of $3.7 million.

Also, a representative chosen at the May school board meeting will represent the Island school and vote for candidates seeking a seat on the ISD board. Before the May meeting, the Island school board must approve a resolution in support of the process, which it did Thursday evening.

The board next meets in the school library at 6 p.m. Thursday, May 21.

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