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Valedictorians, class rank to be eliminated in 2014

| Thursday, April 18, 2013, 3:51 a.m.

Last year, South Allegheny High School had four valedictorians.

On Wednesday, South Allegheny school board decided, starting in August 2014, there will be no valedictorians or salutatorians.

South Allegheny “approved a new policy (that) will ensure that ... students will receive recognition which parallels the collegiate system,” wrote principal Jeffrey Solomon in a letter sent home the day after the vote. Academic achievement will be cited with:

• A “cum laude” rank and a blue honor cord for those with a cumulative quantitative point average of 3.2 to 3.72.

• A “magna cum laude” rank and a gold cord for those with a cumulative QPA of 3.75 to 4.24.

• A “summa cum laude” rank and a blue and gold cord for those with a cumulative QPA of 4.25 or higher.

“All graduates earning a QPA of 4.0 or higher will be recognized by a certificate of distinction,” Solomon wrote. “Class rank will be eliminated from the high school transcript and only be made available directly for scholarship applications on which it clearly and visibly stipulates that class rank is required.”

Superintendent Wayne Gdovic said it's a policy adopted in other districts.

In other action, the board:

• Hired Lauren Eisele, Tia Kettering, Kayla Quast and Jaclyn Begly as day-to-day substitutes.

• Hired Jenna Handra as junior varsity and Katelyn Saylor as middle school cheerleading coaches.

• Approved a family medical leave for Susan Trunzo.

• Renewed a sport and student accident policy with ACE American Insurance through Lee Insurance for $7,800.

• Approved a fourth option year for Nutrition Group services, with a 10-cent hike in breakfast and lunch rates.

• Approved a lease of two copiers from Precision Copy Products for $448.78 a month over 60 months.

• Approved a $3,750 increase in the budget for the alternative education program with the Learning Lamp.

• Approved a commercial service agreement for the baseball, softball, soccer and stadium fields with TruGreen.

• Approved a revised contract with Bayada Home Health Care for in-school nursing through year's end, an end to an agreement with New Step Rehab Inc. and a pact with Delta-T-Group for a speech therapist for a homebound student.

Gdovic cited seventh-graders Dyanne Raine and Austin Bertok and eighth-graders Jasmine Harbaugh as students of the month. He honored high school junior Bailey Johnson for organizing a Dancing with the Athletes event raising $1,414.60 for charity.

Patrick Cloonan is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-664-9161, ext. 1967, or pcloonan@tribweb.com.

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