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Board takes stand for school safety

March 14, 2018
J.T. Whitehouse , The Town Crier

The Austintown Board of Education officially took a stand on the issue of violence on school campuses at the regular meeting on Monday. Board members unanimously approved a resolution that will be forwarded to several government agencies.

The resolution was directed to the President of the United States, Governor of Ohio, the U.S. Congress and the Ohio General Assembly. It asked those entities to "prioritize the protection of students and school employees by enacting legislation with funding" for several specific areas.

"This is not about gun laws or the second amendment," said Superintendent Vince Colaluca.

He said the school board would rather focus on the mental health side of the issue and was asking both state and Federal governments to help fund health services and treatment so all individuals and children have access to those services.

The second area the resolution covered was having safety measures such as infrastructure and on premise school resource officers in place.

"I will be lobbying the state legislature to deal with this," Colaluca said. "The state has not yet supported officers in each school building. Here in Austintown we have done that ourselves."

He said the Board of Education in Austintown is willing to help fund those officers, but he believes the state should support that financially for every school building in Ohio.

Other issues the resolution covered was proper training for school employees, enhanced coordination with law enforcement and first responders, and having a balance between the right to own firearms and the protection of students and school employees.

"A copy of this resolution will be sent to our state and Federal governments," Colaluca said.

In other business:

Staff of the Month recognition went out to Kristine Warga and Paulette Dockry from AES, Kris Mazzella and Mick Naples of AIS, Angela Yohman and Mary Toepfer of AMS, Maribeth McGlynn and Victoria Burton from Fitch, and Barb Toth and Tammy Wilt from the Transportation Department.

Student Trips were approved for the Fitch STEM Program students to travel to Columbus to compete in the VEX robotics State Championships on March 9 and 10, and the Fitch Spanish Club to travel to Pittsburgh on May 10 for the Gateway Clipper Cruise for Spanish students.

The board accepted the donation from Hope Sweany of 10 new Olympic Barbells to the Austintown Fitness Center.

Approval was given to accept the following state and Federal grants for the 2017-18 school year:

The IDEAB-Special Education grant for $1,011,313, the Title I Economically Disadvantaged grant for

$742,985, the Title IIA grant for $143,038, the Title III grant for $8,267, and the Title IV-A grant for $19,020.

 
 

 

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