EATON — Preble County Educational Service Center board members and administrators discussed changes for the coming school year and important school funding legislation during their regular monthly meeting Wednesday, April 28.
Superintendent Mike Gray informed the board near the top of Wednesday’s meeting that Preble Shawnee Local School District Superintendent Dr. Matt Bishop would be leaving his position at the end of June. Bishop has accepted a position at the Miami Valley Career Technology Center.
Bishop reportedly asked Gray to fill in for a period of time while the Shawnee Board of Education searches for a new superintendent. Gray and other board members stressed that Shawnee Curriculum Director Jaime Ranly has experience as a superintendent, however.
“If he wants me to come down there for a month, I’ll do it, but otherwise I think it would be better for her to do that,” Gray said. “And maybe she could be the next Superintendent.”
Assistant to the Superintendent’s Report
Assistant to the Superintendent Shawn Hoff reported that he had spoken to several school districts in Preble County about upcoming changes to the Preble ESC’s programs and services.
“I tried to lay out for them specifically what each program or service looks like in terms of what changes will occur at this point for next year,” Hoff said. Hoff claimed that the districts had been “very supportive” of the changes.
Hoff also stated that he would be speaking to two local school districts in the coming week about adding additional preschool classrooms, as well as marketing the expanded preschool services to the community via flyers and social media.
“We have a lot of preschool-aged students out there whose parents aren’t sending them,” Hoff said. “So we’re going to sit down and talk about what that looks like and how that can maybe be serviced.”
Finally, Hoff informed the board that Ohio ESC Association (OESCA) Executive Director Craig Burford had addressed state legislators on behalf of House Bill 110, a “budget bill” that, among other considerations, will affect the distribution of funds for public education throughout the state, including ESCs.
“He provided a little bit of an overview about what ESCs are, and what we’ve done through all this pandemic to help our districts,” Hoff said.
Hoff told The Register-Herald in January that a COVID-19 Vaccine Task Force created by Gov. Mike DeWine had been disseminating information to the 51 ESCs in Ohio. The ESCs, in turn, had been responsible for communicating with local school districts to assist in scheduling vaccinations between schools and health care providers.
“It’s in front of the Senate now,” Hoff said of the budget legislation, indicating that the Ohio House of Representatives had already approved the bill. “The House was easy; the Senate will be difficult.”
The Preble County Educational Service Center board meets the fourth Wednesday of each month at 5:30 p.m. at the ESC Office, located at 597 Hillcrest Dr. in Eaton.
Reach Anthony Baker at 937-683-4057 or on Facebook @mproperenglish