TCS creates oversight panel for learning center

Talks continued on the opening of the Tiffin Learning Center in the 2015-16 school year during Tiffin City Schools Board of Education meeting Tuesday.

Board member Chris Widman discussed creation of a building committee to oversee the project.

“This is an important commitment,” Widman said. “I feel we are not putting forth enough effort.”

Shirley Smith, board president, established the committee, naming Widman as chair and herself as co-chair.

“I agree with Chris. We need to focus on what we need,” she said.

Among topics addressed by community members during the meeting was a petition introduced over the weekend calling for action against Tiffin City Schools Superintendent Vicki Wheatley.

The petition, entitled “Strengthen Tiffin City Schools,” was created by Susan Smith April 19. As of Tuesday night, there were 252 signatures.

The petition alleges an “unsavory work history” by Wheatley and the need to either hire a new superintendent or non-renew Wheatley’s contract and to not re-elect any board members in support of Wheatley, former school board member Jody Strong said.

“As a board, we urge you to revisit the case of hiring Wheatley and not taking action after misconduct prior to a special meeting in March,” Strong said. “As a board, it is your responsibility to stand up for the community for the present and future.”

Wheatley had no comment on the petition after the meeting.

Smith said, “At this time I am not prepared to make a statement. We are not taking everything lightly.”

In another matter, the grandmother of an 11-year- old boy with Asperger’s syndrome, Donna McConahay, said her grandson was moved from TCS to The Center of Autism and Dyslexia in Findlay.

McConahay said she was told by a teacher that the TCS teachers did not have proper training to teach an Asperger’s child.

“People, what you have in your hands is critical. It is not about the money, it is about the heads and the hearts of our children,” she said. “Stop fighting and do what you have to do.”

During the meeting, the board recognized the following students:

Swimming Natalie Howard, Northern Ohio League champion and state qualifier; Chris Gates, state qualifier.

Wrestling Roman Williams, NOL champion; Mason Correll, NOL champion and state qualifier; and Seth Williams, NOL Champion and Columbian High School’s first state champion.

Choir President Eline Widman and Vice President Natalie Howard.

High school band Emily Bishop and Andrew Fuhrer.

State art champions Alysia Scherger, Justin Brose and Claudia Riedy.

Junior Achievement Titans Elia Theis and Dalton Dazey.

Girls and boys basketball players earning the Ohio High School Basketball Coaches Association Award for attaining a 3.5 or higher grade point average are Ryan Baker, Derek Dryfuse, Josh Flint, Spencer Pauly, Sydney Baker, Laura Heminger, Chelsea Hutchins, Valesha Province, Payge Smith, Marisa Stephens, Dianicia Whitman and McKenzie Zimmerman.

Columbian High School 2014 Science Fair Scholarship Recipients Ross Pualy, Alec Demith, Elena Penhos, Kendalyn Sarka, Jacob Wolf and Adam Forest.

In other news, the board:

Heard committee reports.

Accepted donations.

Approved employment recommendations.

Approved sixth-grade reading series at a cost of $16,800; K-5 reading series at a cost $138,437; and fourth- to sixth-grade math series at a cost of $1,168.

Approved 2014 Tiffin Columbian High School summer school schedule.

Approved revisions to the 2014-15 elementary parent-student handbook; revisions to the 2014-15 middle school parent-student handbook; and revisions to the 2014-15 Tiffin Columbian parent-student handbook.

Approved the 2014 Krout 2-3 third-grade summer school program.

Approved revisions to athletic code of conduct.

Approved summer 2014 Pre-K readiness program.

Approved 2014-15 Seneca County Board of Developmental Disabilities agreement.

Approved an agreement to transport Tiffin City Schools students to The Center for Autism and Dyslexia in Findlay.

Approved a change to board policy that allows for an opt-out provision for students who have entered ninth grade July 1, 2010-July 1, 2014. Those students will not have to take an advanced math credit to be eligible for graduation.

Approved the bid for the Columbian window project to go to Environmental Class Inc. at the cost of $689,755.

The board is to meet at 7 p.m. May 27 in the Tiffin Middle School cafetorium.