New Poland school board member sworn in

By Jordyn Grzelewski


The board of education welcomed a new member Monday.

Judge Mary DeGenaro of the 7th District Court of Appeals administered the oath of office to newly elected board member Gregg Riddle.

Dr. Larry Dinopoulos also took an oath for his third term in office.

In other business, the board elected Elinor Zedaker as board president and James Lavorini as vice president for 2018.

The board also approved its 2018 meeting schedule, with the next regular meeting scheduled for 6 p.m. Feb. 26 at the township government building on Dobbins Road.

Superintendent David Janofa presented certificates to the board members in honor of School Board Recognition Month.

“I appreciate everything you do for the students of Poland schools, and for the community,” Janofa said, noting that while the board compensates members for one meeting per month, the board usually meets close to 30 times per year.

The board recognized the achievements of two students. One is Maggie Sebest, who will graduate with a record-tying 16 varsity letters and a 3.8 GPA.

The board also recognized Lauren Pepperney, a senior who was selected as the 2018 recipient of the YWCA Young Women With Bright Futures Award.

Janofa updated the board on discussions about setting the 2018-19 school calendar. Janofa will meet with representatives of the Poland Education Association, the district’s teachers’ union, to discuss options for a start date and spring break schedule before the board makes a decision.

Also discussed was a proposal by Principal David Purins of Poland Middle/McKinley School to bring a peer-mentoring program to the school. If approved by the board, several administrators and teachers would attend a training session for the Boomerang Project, which focuses on peer mentoring and student-transition programs.

Purins would like to implement the “Where Everybody Belongs” program, which would train eighth-grade students to mentor incoming fifth-grade students and help them make the transition to middle school.

Purins said the program would not only benefit the younger students, but would give older students an opportunity to develop leadership skills.

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