PITSBURG — It’s good news for Franklin Monroe School District students. And more specifically, for their parents.
For the 2015-2016 school year, the Franklin Monroe Board of Education has waived student fees for all students, grades Kindergarten through 12.
“We wanted to give a little something back to parents and the community,” said Franklin Monroe Superintendent Jeff Patrick.
The word comes on the heels of promising financial news for the district.
“We’re about $400,000 in the black right now,” said Patrick. “We’re in great shape financially.”
In addition to the elimination of school fees, which usually run about $50 to $60, students beginning classes at Franklin Monroe on August 31 will see other new things as well.
One will be brand-new language arts textbooks for all grades, paid in part by a REACH (Reading Expands All Children’s Horizons) grant, a collaborative effort by the Franklin Monroe, Milton-Union and Piqua school districts.
“It’s been a process we’ve implemented over the past two and a half years,” said Patrick. “This school year it should be fully implemented.”
The school district is planning to conduct studies for other upgrades over the course of the next few years, including another text book adoption.
Patrick said, “The subject area, however, is undetermined at this point.”
Enrollment for the school district is also on the upswing.
“We have families new to the district, and have added some open-enrollment students.” he said.
Perhaps the most obvious changes Franklin Monroe students will notice this fall are the addition of new staff and faculty.
P.J. Burgett begins his first year as Franklin Monroe high school principal. He is joined by other newcomers, including Jennifer Koestlers (middle school math), Lindsey Cox (high school science), Janelle Holfinger (high school Spanish), Malory Gray (Kindergarten) and Kevin Bergman (Miami Valley Career Technology Center Ag instructor).
Prior to joining Franklin Monroe, Burgett was principal at Bradford High School and an athletic director at Grove City Christian High School in Grove City, Ohio. He was also a teacher at Silverado High School in Victorville, California.
Burgett says he is “absolutely” excited to begin the new school year and has started getting to know his pupils.
“I’ve met a few of the students who have stopped in the office. Also, during the interview process, I had the chance to meet some of the students. And I’ve been getting to know some of our MVCTC students who have already started,” he said.
Burgett says that his administrative style will have the best interests of the students as the top priority.
“Every decision I make is based on what is best for the student,” he said. “We want to motivate every student, to dig deep and pull out the best they have. Schools are founded on a partnership between school and the home. We will work on continuing that idea here.”
Patrick added, “We’re looking forward to the students returning after a long summer. Having the kids in the building is always an exciting time.”
To contact Franklin Monroe schools, visit the district’s website at www.franklin-monroe.k12.oh.us/ or call 937-947-1329.