Three topics highlight B-A Board Meeting

June 10 has been set as a possible date for Bellwood-Antis school board members to name a new superintendent. A list of 15 applicants have been narrowed down to three and are being brought in for interviews, tours and to meet with the administration. The three candidates are all from Pennsylvania. The possible June 10 vote comes after the resignation of current superintendent Rodney Kuhns, who will remain the job until August 15, 2003.
Next Tuesday, school board members will also vote on whether to implement a drug and alcohol testing program for students ranging from 5th through 12th grades who currently participate in extracurricular activities.
The first year of testing would be voluntary and then mandatory for every student whose parents sign a consent form for their child to participate in extracurricular activities in the 2003-2004 school year. If a student is not tested or refuses beginning in year two, they would not be eligible to participate in activities for that school year. A student would be reinstated if they submit to a test and that test is negative.
According to the policy, if a student tests positive, a second test will be conducted within 48 hours to confirm the results. If the second test is negative, no further action is taken. But if the second test is positive, then a medical review physician or testing facility will confirm the positive test results followed by a conference with the parents to make them aware of the results.
The new policy is viewed as a prevention and treatment campaign and does not result in suspension from school, expulsion or any referral to police. Other laws or regulations concerning drugs or alcohol due come into play. Costs associated with the program will be paid by the district.
And for the fifth straight year no tax increases have been proposed for the 2003-2004 school budget. The tentative budget calls for $970,948 of the districts funds to be used to balance the budget, leaving the district with $1,477,052 after the 2003-2004 school year. The tentative budget lists general expenditures at $12,276,801, not including additional staff.
The largest increases in expenses are $233,851 for a 25 percent increase in medical, prescription and vision insurance’s. Next are wage and salary increases total $193,713 and another $180,339 for retirement. The school district has seen an increase in its revenue of $90,165 in the state subsidy for the retirement rate change, which increased from 1.15 percent to 3.77 percent.