SA looking to add fire and safety class

Authored by Manda Arnold on Sep 13, 2013

The South Adams School Board heard an update from superintendent Scott Litwiller on Tuesday evening regarding the new Fire and Safety Career and Technical Education Class that might be coming to South Adams. Last spring, high school principal Trent Lehman was approached by Geneva firefighter Art Booth about hosting a Fire and Safety vocational class at South Adams. Over the summer, Area 18 CTE Cooperative director Kevin Keller worked with Booth and Lehman on a detailed proposal. There are many positives to the class, including postsecondary dual credit at Ivy Tech and industry certification. Also, the class will be held at the Geneva Fire Station and primary enrollment will be from South Adams and Jay County.
There are still some details that need to be sorted out – how long each class will be; whether it will be a one or two year program; student cost-fees/materials/clothing; start up and maintenance costs; and the potential impact on other Area 18 enrollments. Litwiller anticipates these details to be decided this month and that the program will be presented to the Area 18 board in late September. Litwiller did state that even if the program were approved by Area 18 and South Adams, enrollment in the class in April would determine whether the class would actually begin or not.
Litwiller also updated the board on the Secured School Safety Grant. This grant is a matching grant and will reimburse schools for 50 percent of expenses used to employ a school resource officer (SRO), conduct a threat assessment, or purchase equipment to restrict access to schools or expedite notification of first responders. This grant could be used to purchase fencing to be placed around the auto mechanics area; card swipe entries; and renumbering of entryways. Unfortunately, the grant cannot be used for existing projects, so it cannot be used for SRO expenses for this year. As the SRO agreement with Geneva is only a one year contract, the grant could possibly be used for next year’s SRO.
The grant due date is September 30. The maximum reimbursement amount is $50,000. According to Litwiller, this is a competitive grant, so South Adams is in no way ensured that they will receive the funding.
The board also approved the Driver Education Program for this fall. Myron Schwartz will be teaching the class, and 14 students will start this week. The fee remains the same as last year, $300 for South Adams students and $340 for non-South Adams students. They are planning on having another class next spring.
In building news, construction on the new cross country pavilion is now complete according to maintenance director Dave Vorhees. A few areas still need dealt with. Following the South Adams Cross Country Invitational, electricity will be run out to the pavilion, dirt still needs to be moved, and grass will be planted.
Litwiller updated the board on the elementary property listing agreement. School attorney Tim Baker sent a revised agreement to BND Commercial Real Estate Solutions in Fort Wayne with some changes. Litwiller stated that he is hoping to get the agreement signed soon so the property can be listed.
The board approved overnight field trip requests for Coach Clint Anderson to take the cross country team to the Culver Invitational. The team will leave after school on Friday, September 27 and will return in the afternoon on Saturday, September 28. They also approved two requests made by Jason Shuck to take the FFA on overnight field trips. Six members of the FFA will be going to the National FFA Convention in Louisville, Kentucky. They will leave the morning of Wednesday, October 30 and return the evening of Saturday, November 2. Eight members of the FFA will be competing in livestock judging at the Hoosier Beef Congress in Indianapolis. They will leave after school on Friday, December 6 and return in the evening on Saturday, December 7.
In other news:
- Jim Horton was approved as the SEBT Teacher Representative.
- An old forklift was declared as surplus equipment, and the school will be accepting sealed bids for it.
- An amendment to the student handbook was approved. Due a bill recently passed in the General Assembly, the law changed the definition of bullying and established bullying prevention and intervention program requirements for school corporations. Litwiller stated that with the anti-bullying program already in place at South Adams, very few changes needed to be made.
- The board approved the facility request by Campus Life for a service at 7:00 p.m. on Sunday, September 29. They plan on using the football bleachers or the auditorium if it rains and the hallways for prayer.

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