School Board Notebook: July 14, 2012

by Nicole Reitz

The Fulton Board of Education has a new president.

David Cordone was elected as president. He replaces Robbin Griffin, who lost her school-board seat in the May election.

Fred Cavalier was also elected as the new board clerk. He replaces clerk Brian Hotaling.

Rosemary Occhino will remain on as the board’s vice president.

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Audience member attendance might have been at an all time low during Tuesday’s meeting.

The low attendance sparked an idea from board member Dan Pawlewicz. He suggested moving the board meetings to the city’s six schools.

“Offering a different venue could allow principals to show of their school,” said Pawlewicz.

Hotaling was open to the idea, but questioned if moving the meetings would be more work than an opportunity.

“It’s not a bad idea, I don’t know if the timing it perfect for it,” said Hotaling. “I’d like to hear from principals to see if they would be interested in hosting us.”

Changing the location of the twice-monthly meeting is something that the Fulton board has never done before, but is a common practice in other schools, such as Hannibal Central School District.

Pawlewicz’s concern is that the community is not attending board meetings not because of a lack of interest, but an intimidation factor.

“I know people won’t get into this building, people are afraid of it,” said Pawlewicz.

Superintendent Billy Lynch noted that a change in environment could mean more work for the schools’ principals.

The district’s portable sound system would also need to be set up. “It would give the board the opportunity to interact with that school community,” said Lynch.

The board approved the meeting schedule for 2012-2013, but will further discuss the possibility of holding meetings outside of the Fulton Education Center.

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During the regular business meeting, the board approved resolutions that highlighted the careers of 13 retiring staff members.

They include Katherine Biss, Melanie Bock, Kathleen Kinney, Stephen Kush, Patricia Lok, Mike Schroeder, Elaine McIntyre, Kathleen Rossi, Deborah Walbereger, Dave Wilson, Diane Wilson, Georgia Wood and Lynn Swayze.

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