ESC set to train teachers for new reading program

LISBON – Although the requirements for the Third Grade Reading Guarantee continue to change, the Columbiana County Education Service Center is preparing to train area teachers later this summer.

ESC Director Judy Herron said there will be $136,000 available to begin training teachers. The ESC will also be looking for people experienced in reading education and fluency to assist the local schools in preparing for the guarantee next year. The program will focus on getting students prepared from kindergarten through the third grade.

Only those students meeting reading requirements will soon be allowed to go on to the fourth grade, although the requirements continue to change, according to Herron. The website from the Ohio Department of Education continues to show new requirements.

Another item discussed at Monday’s ESC meeting is a proposal by state Sen. Joe Schiavoni, a bill which would provide between $25,000 to $100,000 per Ohio school so they can improve school safety. The money will given to schools depending on size, but it will not be competitive. All schools proposing on increasing school security will be eligible to receive money through House Bill 126. Some possible uses of the money would be projects such as camera improvements or new doors.

The board also discussed some of the recent events held through the ESC, such as the Heads Above the Rest breakfast and the Students with Disabilities Camp. Home Depot and Dollar General made donations for the Students with Disabilities Camp, allowing students to make their own drums. Students created a drum circle for about an hour in the evening.

In other matters before the board:

– The board approved the retirement resignations of Herron, Julie Maruskin, Nancy Hockenberry, Martha Smith and Nancy Phillipson.

– The board approved summer hours for the ESC staff. The offices will be open from 7:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Monday through Friday.

– The board approved 110 hours at a rate of $20 per hour for Kim Cody, who is providing tutoring services to Beaver Local Students, and online classes for both Crestview and Lisbon students.

– The board also approved the employment of substitute teachers Christopher Stotler and Katherine Neville, as well as substitute classroom assistants/paraeducators, Tina Powers and Neville.