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WRITER: Raymond L. Smith

CEO outlines goals for Youngstown schools

YOUNGSTOWN — Justin Jennings, less than three months into his tenure as Youngstown City Schools CEO, told the Youngstown Academic Distress Commission that his executive staff is working to improve student literacy, overall teaching and reduce absenteeism among students and employees. Jennings told commission members Tuesday that the district is looking at the hiring process to make sure new employees ...

Woman pleads guilty in human-trafficking case

YOUNGSTOWN — A former Youngstown Police Department dispatcher pleaded guilty to a charge of attempted obstructing justice and was sentenced to 18 months of probation. Elaine Hellman, 72, is the second person to plead guilty in a case involving human trafficking. Her son Ronald Hellman, 51, of Youngstown, is the lead defendant in the case that included 104 counts in the indictment. Elaine Hellman was ...

Schools support funding proposal

A school funding formula that could — for the first time — make the state’s formula constitutional and also would stabilize funding in Ohio’s 611 school districts will be discussed 6:30 p.m. Monday at Lordstown High School. Ohio’s school funding formula is affected by a 1997 Ohio Supreme Court decision, DeRolph v. State, a landmark case in Ohio constitutional law, in which the court ruled that the ...

Libraries fight e-book policy

WARREN — The Warren Trumbull Library System board approved a resolution asking publishers to reconsider announced policy changes for the distribution of e-books and e-audio books to libraries. The changes, the board maintains, could potentially create increased financial burdens for libraries. The resolution is one of a number approved by library boards of trustees across Ohio and across the nation ...

BOE candidates to be chosen in November

YOUNGSTOWN — Potential candidates for the next Youngstown school board are expected to be sent to Paolo DeMaria, Ohio’s superintendent of public instruction, by Nov. 1. The list then will be reviewed and presented to the nominating panel before Nov. 7. The goal is for that panel to present the candidates to Mayor Jamael Tito Brown by Nov. 8, and he will choose five. “We have to present the list of ...

Youngstown begins process to create new school board

YOUNGSTOWN — A committee that will select the panel to nominate candidates for the forthcoming mayor-appointed Youngstown Board of Education will meet 5:30 p.m. Thursday in the Youngstown Rayen Early College High School Community Room. It’s the first time in Ohio for such a process to replace an entire elected board. Critics say that the process would be state-controlled and a suppression of voters’ ...

Districts face shortage of substitute teachers

When Jim Hildebrand walks in to Boardman High School, the retired salesman usually only has a vague idea what he will be teaching that day. A building substitute for the last five years, Hildebrand teaches whatever is needed that day — math, science, social studies or anything else. “I love what I’m doing,” Hildebrand said. “I’ve been doing this for five years in Boardman and in Poland high ...

Workshop offers look at threats

YOUNGSTOWN — Countering cyber- and other threats to the operations of Youngstown State University and other institutions were topics of a Friday workshop. “Our goal is to get people to think about cyber- and physical threats in an event of a health emergency, such as a measles outbreak, or a phishing attack on computer networks,” Sarah Bigham, a lead security analyst with Research and Education Networks ...

Students test job market

YOUNGSTOWN — Freshman mechanical engineering student Joe Castma spent much of Thursday at Youngstown State University’s STEM expo talking to various companies about his goals — and trying to draw interest for an internship or a co-op assignment. Castma, 21, described the expo as very important for getting students in front of businesses. “Most employers today want students that have some hands-on ...

Libraries protest publisher’s new restriction on e-books

WARREN — The Warren-Trumbull County Public Library board is expected to join Youngstown and Mahoning County and other Ohio libraries in denouncing Macmillan Publishers decision limiting the number of new e-books and e-audiobooks that libraries can receive. Macmillan Publishers, one of the five largest book publishing companies, beginning Nov. 1, will restrict the number of e-books to libraries during the ...