Mountain View to hold taxes at index

The Mountain View School Board voted that they would not raise 2017-18 real estate taxes by more than the Act 1 index of 2.9 percent during their board meeting on Monday, Dec. 19.
Taxes will be raised to the index, however, it was noted.
Board member Monica Miller asked, “Are we going to be okay with the new fair funding formula?”
Business manager Tom Witiak said, “I think we will be okay if we go to the index. It shows we are attempting to generate our own revenue.”
Witiak said that the district is starting to get notifications on rates. The PSERS rate is now 32.457 percent, with a plateau of 36 percent, he said. Health insurance has been set at a cost of $8,055 for individual and $19,975 for family plans.
Dr. Christopher Lake, director of curriculum and instruction, reported on a conference he attended with other administrators. He said that he attended 14 sessions, and that the conference was a valuable one. He recommended a book, “Inevitable,” that was discussed at one session, which is about the history of education and changes in thought. “It is about students being able to have a voice and a choice,” he said. He said that many districts are now assigning homework on a student led, student choice basis, so that students have ownership of their work outside the classroom. “They have found that with this model, students are doing more homework.” Lake noted that instead of calling children students, it is more positive to call them learners. He also noted the more positive ESSA (Every Student Succeeds At….) program, which replaces No Child Left Behind.
The board voted to advertise for a 223 day clerical position for the guidance office in the high school. The guidance secretary is transferring to another position in the district. This clerical position will have a salary of $11.20 per hour and benefits per MVESPA agreement.
Maintenance director Bob Taylor noted that the woodburning boiler went down the previous week when one of the main circuit cards failed. It was replaced. “The programmer is re-programming it, but it now feeds wood faster into the burn chamber and runs more efficiently.”
He also mentioned maintenance work that would be performed over the winter break.
*Codie Keogh was hired for a food service position at a salary of $10.20 with benefits per MVESPA agreement.
*Several faculty members and 45-50 students will be participating in the Regional Science Olympiad at Penn State Wilkes-Barre on March 8; Mason Stiver and four senior high band students will be participating in the Marywood Senior Wind Band Celebration on Jan. 20-21.
*Jason Cameron was approved as a basketball, softball and baseball volunteer.
*Michael Zimorowicz of Scranton was added to the high school and elementary substitute lists, and Gary Jones of Kingsley was added to the paraprofessional list.
*The board voted to accept the resignation of Allan Phelps from his custodian position, effective Dec. 30. The custodian position will be posted and advertised with a starting salary of $11.20 and benefits per the MVESPA agreement.
*The board approved a transfer of $30,000 from the general fund to the cafeteria fund.
*The board approved the hiring of DeHey McAndrew to perform 403b Salary Reduction services. The cost is $3,675 plus $1.59 per contributor.
*The board also approved DeHey McAndrew to perform 403b post severance services, at a cost of $2,675 plus $1.59 per contributor per pay period, as presented. The same firm will also perform HRA services, at $2.l50 per participant per month, as presented.
The Senior Class still has not chosen where they will go for their senior trip, but have narrowed down options, said Student Government Association Liaison Olivia Ainey. The seniors have raised $8,000 by selling candy. Prom will be held on May 13 at the Montdale Country Club. A Feed a Friend canned food collection effort went very well. *The Student Government Association attended the state conference in November.
The SGA is looking to bring a speaker, Cara Fuller, to the high school after seeing her give a motivational presentation at the state conference. Fuller’s message is about decision making and living with the choices one makes.
*A Donkey Basketball game is set for March 30 to raise money for Relay for Life.
The seventh and eighth grade semiformal will be held on Feb. 4.
*The FBLA held a fall craft fair on Nov. 12. They went to the FBLA Regional Conference on Dec. 20, and held a holiday talent show on Dec. 22. The state competition will be held April 2-5.
*The National Honor Society held a fall blood drive on Nov. 30 and did a holiday caroling trip.
*The Students Against Drunk Driving organization is planning a Battle of the Bands for Jan. 21. For more information, contact Mrs. Beach.
*Relay for Life is scheduled for Friday, May 19.
*The spring musical will be “Back to the 80s”, to be performed Mar. 9-11.
*The Art Club will be hosting a Soup & Paint event to benefit a local soup kitchen in February. For more information, contact Mrs. Lombardi.

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