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Homer-Center School Board approves staff moves, repair work

Jeff Himler
| Friday, Aug. 30, 2013, 1:57 p.m.

Homer-Center School Board prepared for the new school year last week by hiring a new elementary instructor while approving some other staff moves as well as payment for some maintenance work.

At its Aug. 22 meeting, the board hired Emily Gates as a third-grade teacher, effective Aug. 22. Her starting salary of $54,149 will be increased for the 2013-14 school year in accordance with terms of the district's contract with the Homer-Center Education Association.

Following the meeting, Superintendent Charles Koren explained that the contract calls for teacher salaries to increase each year by the greater of either 2 percent or a percentage determined by the average of the district's Act 1 index and the increase in the basic education subsidy the district receives from state coffers.

District and teacher's union representatives are preparing to launch talks by Jan. 15 for negotiation of a follow-up contract.

The school board authorized math teacher Matthew Rodkey to function as a dean of students during his non-instructional duty periods. He will not receive any additional pay for the new role, which will allow him to assist high school principal Jody Rainey with disciplinary matters.

Homer-Center employed Loretta Blystone as a crossing guard at a starting salary of $8 per hour for two hours per day. But the district lost the services of two other guards who resigned — Judy Fleming and Jean Adamsky, who also served as a substitute cleaner.

Instructional aide L. Lorraine Henry also resigned.

The board hired Amy Stefan and Jamie Wagner as 4-hour, 12-month cleaners, effective Aug. 23. Each will complete an initial 60-day probationary period at 90 percent of the starting wage of $9.13. Wayne Shields will see his work schedule increase from three hours to seven hours in his 12-month cleaner position.

School directors agreed to pay Total Asphalt Management $2,295 for cleaning and filling asphalt cracks in the district's parking area. The firm also will be paid $3,975 for restriping and painting the district parking lots.

Griffith and Petz Company will receive $3,850 for repairing ductwork on the elementary school roof and an additional $695 for repairing an air-conditioning unit.

Homer-Center agreed to pay Pennsylvania Municipal Services for non-resident tax claims totaling $10,189.64 as of last Jan. 3.

The money will cover wage tax receipts PAMS owes to another tax collection agency, Berkheimer, for instances where an employer who withheld the taxes submitted them to the wrong taxing authority.

Homer-Center approved Millman Actuaries to provide GASB (Governmental Accounting Standards Board) 45 valuation services for financial reporting for a three-year cycle from July 1, 2012 to June 30, 2015 at a fee of $7,161.

Jeff Himler is an editor for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 724-459-6100, ext. 2910 or

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