East Holmes Board students flourishing in Buckeye Career Center programs

*This story first appeared in The Budget’s April 25, 2018, Local Edition.

By Stacey Carmany
The Budget

During the April meeting of the East Holmes Board of Education, Buckeye Career Center Superintendent Bob Alsept and Curriculum Director Frank Polen gave an update on the career center’s ongoing partnership with the district.

Alsept reported that a record 24 Hiland students are currently taking classes at the career center’s main campus in New Philadelphia, and another 45 Hiland students are taking part in the programs offered at the career center’s East Holmes Campus.

The two programs currently being offered at the East Holmes Campus are the Business Academy, which provides students with hands-on training in keyboarding, office filing, graphic design and accounting and is taught by Amy Stauffer McNutt; and the Buckeye Construction Program, which gives students opportunities to build furniture and learn carpentry skills, varnish and painting techniques, and framing and instructed by Jamie Garber.

Several additional offerings are also being considered based on the needs of the community, according to Alsept.

“Looking out into the future, we know that there are needs for ag-diesel mechanics, commercial truck mechanics and diversified health,” he shared. “As we move forward, those are the areas we’ ll certainly look at.”

In addition to its programs at the New Philadelphia and East Holmes campuses, BCC also offers Agricultural Science coursework at Hiland for students interested in future careers in agriculture. This school year, a total of 44 junior high and high school students have been taking part in the program.

Also at Hiland, the career center continues to offer an Adult Basic Literacy Education (ABLE) program that can be accessed by students seeking an equivalency to a traditional high school diploma.

In addition to its programs for high school students, the career center also offers a wide array of options for adults seeking to further their education including 11

full-time certificate programs and hundreds of enrichment courses.

East Holmes Superintendent Erik Beun shared that the district’s values and appreciates BCC’s partnership and the opportunities it continues to provide for district students.

In other action, the board:

  • APPROVED a contract renewal with EJ Therapy Services for occupational and physical therapy and audiology services for the 2018-2019 school year.
  • APPROVED an updated copier lease agreement with ComDoc.
  • APPROVED May 30 as the final day of instruction for students for the 2017-2018 school year, with a Teacher Work Day scheduled for May 31.
  • APPROVED the Hiland 1:1 Chromebook Procedures Handbook for the 2018-2019 school year.
  • APPROVED Engagement Agreements with the Tri-County Educational Service Center and the law firm of Day Ketterer, Ltd., for legal services.
  • ACCEPTED the resignation of Abby Radabaugh, 5 – 8 science teacher at Wise Elementary, effective May 30.
  • APPROVED a contract on an as-needed basis for Shannon Olsen, classroom aide at Berlin Elementary, effective for the remainder of the 2017-2018 school year and retroactive to April 16.
  • APPROVED Colin Blochlinger as field preparation and maintenance custodian from May 1 through July 31 at a stipend of $1,600 to be paid by the Athletic Department.
  • ENTERED into executive session for the purpose of discussions related to personnel. No action followed.
  • LEARNED that the new point-of-sale system is now up and run- ning in the cafeteria at Mt. Hope Elementary. All schools are now using the same system as a way to streamline foodservice operations districtwide.
  • LEARNED that 148 students have been referred for the summer instruction being offered at Berlin Elementary June 4 – 22.
  • HEARD that state testing is currently underway for Grades 7 – 11, with Advanced Placement exams set to begin at Hiland next month.
  • LEARNED that Right to Read Week is being celebrated at Berlin Elementary the week of May 7 – 11. Principal Darren Blochlinger noted that this year’s events will have a camping theme.
  • LEARNED that this year’s kindergarten registration went extremely well. Jon Wilson, federal programs, curriculum and testing administrator, reported that a number of parent surveys have already been returned, and families seem pleased with the new centralized format.
  • LEARNED that Student Services Director CJ Spreng recently met with representatives from Holmes County Job and Family Services about their upcoming job fair and the possibility of having some students attend the event.
  • ANNOUNCED the next meeting of the East Holmes Board of Education is Tuesday, May 15, at 7:30 a.m. in the Central Office located at 6108 County Road 77 in Berlin (Millersburg).