West Branch plans in-person graduation

BELOIT – West Branch is set to have an in-person graduation ceremony.

Acting Superintendent Micki Egli reported this week the district intends to hold the graduation ceremony June 6 at the high school, based on current social gathering restrictions regarding the Covid-19 pandemic. She said depending on weather there will either be an outdoor ceremony at the stadium or three separate ceremonies indoors.

Egli noted the plans could change if restrictions on social gatherings are eased or tightened.

Additionally, Egli said the district plans to hold a prom in some form May 1, although she is not 100 percent clear what it will look like.

Egli noted Columbiana County schools are announcing prom plans based on the county’s health department guidance, but West Branch follows the guidelines of Mahoning County, the health department of which has not yet made clear how schools can handle proms. She said the current plan is to have it early enough so if seniors have to be quarantined from the event they will still be able to participate in graduation.

In other business, the board authorized Egli, board President Aaron Hawk and Treasurer Adam Fisher to develop a resolution to an employment claim with former transportation director Sherry Malloy. Egli did not provide details of the claim at this time.

The board also accepted the retirement of bus driver Luanne Cope effective Feb. 18 and the resignations of Scott Loudon as junior varsity baseball coach and Kevin Butler as varsity baseball assistant; and granted supplemental spring coaching contracts pending completion of a full season to Haley Armour for softball junior varsity, Taylor Crewson for softball junior varsity, Tiffany Woods for softball volunteer, Carl Davanzo for middle school girls track, John Hancock for middle school girls track assistant, Frank Edie for middle school boys track, Chris Dorris for middle school boys track assistant, Chris Tucker for baseball varsity assistant, Brenden Wells for baseball junior varsity and Scott Loudon as baseball volunteer.

Also at the meeting, the board accepted donations of $1,000 anonymously for Project Lead the Way, $5,000 from Alliance Community Hospital for Project Lead the Way, $350 from various donors to athletics in memory of Barb Bates, $580 from various donors to athletics in memory of Phoebe Chepke and $800 from Hahlen Line Service LCC as a wrestling sponsor.

The next regular board meeting is scheduled for 6:30 p.m. March 25.


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