School board moves forward with security upgrades

By Ashley Luthern


The board of education is moving forward with a plan to upgrade security district-wide at a cost not to exceed $80,000.

The board approved a resolution Monday that called for proposals from more than one contractor to make improvements suggested by the district’s architect, Thomas A. Madej of Team 8e Architecture. These would include installing programs to lock down school doors at specific times and have video cameras at the doors.

The district’s legal counsel agreed that the security work constitutes an urgent necessity and can move forward without soliciting bids.

“It would be done more quickly than had we gone through a formal bidding process. We want to have it done as we go into spring and certainly prior to the end of the school year,” said interim Superintendent Don Dailey.

The school board also heard from Julie Liddle, chairwoman of the stakeholder committee for the superintendent search. The committee had an online survey to determine the top three characteristics people want in a new Poland superintendent.

The survey drew 312 responses, and the top three characteristics were:

Effectively plan and manage the long-term financial health of the district.

Listen to and effectively represent the interests and concerns of students, staff, parents and community members.

Guide the operation and maintenance of the school facilities to ensure secure, safe and clean school environments that support learning.

The deadline for Poland superintendent applicants is Feb. 15. Ron Iarussi, Mahoning County Educational Services Center superintendent who is assisting with the search, and Dailey will then filter the applicants and present qualified candidates to the board for a “paper review,” Dailey said.

The board would narrow it to several candidates for interviews and then the stakeholder committee would be “re-involved to participate in an interview process” that the board observes, Dailey said.

“The committee is simply to provide input to the board. It is the board’s ultimate responsibility to make a decision of who our next superintendent will be,” Dailey said.

In other business, the board created a head custodian position for the McKinley Elementary-Middle School complex instead of having one for each building, after a retirement. Dailey said the change saves the district just under $10,000.

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