Greenville BOE approves 2023-2024 calendar, 2022-2023 graduates, hears 3 citizens


By Dawn Hatfield

GREENVILLE — The Greenville City School District Board of Education met in the Anna Bier Civic Room of St. Clair Memorial Hall on Feb. 16. Of particular interest were the approval of the 2023-2024 school calendar, approval of upcoming class of 2023 graduates (pending requirements), and the hearing of three citizens regarding their district concerns and/or requests.

Doug Fries, Jenna Jurosic, Mark Libert, Brad Gettinger, Jim Sommer, Kristi Strawser, Krista Stump, and Jim Hooper were present.

Following roll call, the Pledge of Allegiance, adoption of agenda, and approval of minutes, Superintendent Doug Fries called for a moment of silence to recognize Sherry Scott, former paraprofessional at GHS, for the impact she made on the lives of so many students and staff, saying, “Sherry’s dedication, commitment, and care to the students was inspiring…”

Fries announced GHS NJROTC Unit, SNSI Commander Atkinson, and NSI Instructor Dr. Scott had excellent Change of Command Promotions and Awards as well as Pass-in-Review on Jan. 27; Caden Lecklider qualified for 200- and 500-freestyle swim at the district meet at Miami University; and BOE members Jim Sommer and Krista Stump for receiving 2023 OSBA awards.

Commendations were extended to the Med Tech Students who competed in the HOSA Regional events on Feb. 7 and advanced to the state-level competition: Lexi Arnett, Kaylyn Bailey, Aubreyonna Bayless, Skylar Bryson, Addie Burke, Ana Jarvis, Savannah Leach, Lillian Steens, and Aleah Tomlinson.

Fries also announced 997 students in grades four through 12 received academic recognition on the merit or honor rolls, which is just shy of 57 percent of the students.

Kindergarten registration will be held at Memorial Hall March 27 through 31 from 8 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. with extended hours on March 27 (4 to 5:30 p.m.) and March 28 (4 to 6 p.m.). Only parents need attend the registration as the students will need to attend a Kindergarten screening on April 24. Parents should bring child’s birth certificate and immunization records and custody papers (if relevant). Parents need their own photo ID as well as two proofs of residency.

There were three individuals who exercised their right to address the board during public participation:

Greenville Schools alumna and current employee, Kelsey Tester-Ervin, first addressed the board regarding the lack of safety in high school athletics, referencing one sport/coach in particular. Tester-Ervin said, “I am here speaking tonight because the toxic culture has silenced players and parents for years. Parents are told by their [children] not to say anything because they don’t want it to get worse, and players don’t say anything themselves because—how could they?—they don’t feel safe.” Tester-Ervin requested that the supplemental contract vote regarding the coach in question be postponed to allow more athletes and parents time to share their concerns. The vote, however, took place on this night per the BOE agenda, and said contract was approved 5-0.

Next, Cindy Rose, current Greenville Schools employee and director of Darke County Special Olympics as well as co-parent of two children who have now been transferred out of Greenville Schools, spoke to the board for what she reported was the third time, concerning the improper placement of students in the district with special education needs. Rose said, “I come to you with continued concerns, and enough is enough… The teachers at our district bust tail every day. They are expected to educate, in the same classroom, a child who might be on a [reading] level 4 in third grade and [a child on] a level 25. They’re supposed to differentiate; they’re supposed to meet all their needs. I will tell you that is impossible, completely impossible. No one person can meet all those needs in a class of 22, 23, 24, 25.”

To finish out public participation, Damien Coppess, GMS seventh-grade student, requested the board allow for recognition of Peal Harbor Day on Dec. 7 either by a day off of school or a school memorial convocation. Coppess said, “The attack on Pearl Harbor was a major event in U.S. history that resulted in the loss of many lives. I think it is important to take a day to remember those who bravely fought… Two hundred five of my teachers and peers agree with this idea [per signed petition].” The 2023-2024 calendar was adopted per the night’s agenda with no such calendar adjustment made.

The board president thanked the public for attending and voicing their concerns, stating, “It always seems like, when I’ve been on that side, we’re not doing anything. We can’t do anything now. This is the point where we get to hear, so thank you for sharing.”

Treasurer’s business included approval of January’s report as well as recognition of bills for payment to Country Meats, Service Company, Dick Blick Company, and Amazon/VISA. Permanent appropriations by fund for fiscal year 2023 were recommended for filing with the Darke County Auditor. Motion was approved by all.

Superintendent’s business included a recommendation of board policies be updated to reflect new dates and/or minor changes as presented in two previous meetings as well as policies’ review for first and second readings under separate cover. The full policy is available for public viewing at by searching Board of Education Policy Manual. Motion passed 5-0.

Donations were unanimously accepted with appreciation from several in the community, including a generous family contribution to the eighth-grade students’ Washington, D.C., trip and a donation from Whirlpool Corporation for food, school supplies, and a sensory station for use by staff and students. The motion was unanimously approved by all with appreciation.

Contracts included approval of purchase of sensory room and sensory cart equipment; Shoebox Tasks Advanced Curriculum; Reading A-Z renewal; Life Skills, News2you, Positivity, SymbolStix, and Unique Learning System bundles renewals; A&S Party Rentals for after-prom event on May 6; membership renewal with Darke County Chamber of Commerce; and annual membership for Greenville Career Technical Education Center. Motion was approved 5-0.

Requests included acceptance of Superintendent’s Report on verified acts of harassment, intimidation, and bullying for first semester; approval of addition of Behavioral Threat Assessment sections to both GMS and GHS Emergency Operation Plans; as well as the approval of 2023 graduates pending completion of necessary local and state requirements and certificates of attendance for others, namely exchange students in the district. Motion passed unanimously.

Additionally, the superintendent recommended approval of resolution authorizing 2023-2024 membership in the Ohio High School Athletic Association (OHSAA) with approval by all board members.

Field trip approvals were granted, including a reduction in cost of eighth-grade D.C. trip from $820 to $768 per student, an out-of-state trip for forty 11th-grade student to visit IU East in Richmond, Ind., and an overnight trip for qualifying varsity wrestlers to participate in the 2023 Southwest District Division II Wresting Championships on March 3 to 4. All presented trips were approved 5-0.

Regarding curriculum were several requests, all unanimously approved, including the approval of the 2023-2024 school calendar to begin (for students) Aug. 28 and end on May 29 with winter break occurring Dec. 20 through Jan. 2.; agreements with both Sinclair Community College and Edison State Community College for partner in the College Credit Plus program; approval of an affiliation agreement with IU East for student placement; and purchase of 100 Dell laptop computers.

All presented resignations were unanimously accepted.

Classified and certified substitute staff were approved for conditional employment, 4-0 with Strawser abstaining from the vote. All unpaid leave requests were approved. Salary increases for change in salary classification as well as tuition reimbursements were unanimously approved as well as all requested reimbursements for professional meeting attendance/expenses and payment to teachers who write and complete Individual Education Plans (IEPs).

Supplemental contracts were unanimously approved for 2022-2023 Assistant High School Baseball Coach, Eighth Grade Baseball Coach, Assistant High School Boys/Girls Track Coach, Seventh Grade Baseball Coach and Seventh Grade Softball Coach as well as approval for several volunteers.

Supplemental contracts were unanimously approved for 2023-2024 Varsity Girls Soccer Coach, Varsity Girls Golf Coach, Varsity Boys/Girls Cross Country Coach, Varsity Football Coach, Varsity Boys Golf Coach, and Varsity Girls Volleyball Coach.

Libert updated board on Greenville Schools Foundation’s Feb. 16 meeting where the foundation received 20 applicants for projects and purchases. Decisions on recipients and amounts will be decided at the meeting of the directors on Feb. 23 with grant awards announced shortly afterward and communicated to recipients by letter attached to email. Applications for the Robert and Mary Beasecker Memorial Scholarships and the Linda Dianne Brown and Richard Brown Scholarships will be available in the high school guidance office soon. Finally, commemorative bricks are waiting to be installed in the Wave Way, including the BOE brick. Orders for new bricks are still ongoing.

Gettinger reported on Career Tech Stakeholders and CIS where there is “tremendous participation” in tech programs at GHS. It was reported 307 students (36%) participate in some form of technology education. Overall, the program is graded a “B” at this time. Feedback from stakeholders included interest in promoting and developing student leadership opportunities.

Strawser reported no news and that Business Advisory Council will meet next month.

Stump had no DCCA news for this month but will have information following next week’s meeting.

Sommer updated the board on legislative matters, citing the legislature is prioritizing education in the General Assembly. There is currently a lot of statewide legislative support for expansion of the voucher program, which Sommer said “do[es] take money away from public schools.” Sommer advised members and public to “keep eyes and ears open” to educational matters in legislation stating, “The Supreme Court has proven [educational] funding in Ohio is unconstitutional.”

Board members then adjourned the meeting at 7:38 p.m.

The Greenville City Schools Board of Education meetings are typically held the third Thursday of each month beginning at 6:30 p.m. in St. Clair Memorial Hall, 215 W. Fourth Street, Greenville, Ohio. Full meeting minutes are regularly posted on the Board of Education site:

Reach Daily Advocate Reporter Dawn Hatfield at [email protected] or 937-569-0066.

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