Plymouth Community SchoolsPlymouth Schools Superintendent Andy Hartley told board members at the May 15 public meeting that administrators will be evaluating everything from an efficiency perspective. Referring to funding increases that were approved for education by the state legislators during the recent session, Hartley said, “We’ve seen headlines that there were historic increases for education. We’ve dug in and analyzed the potential impact for Plymouth, combined with our enrollment projections.” The state compensates school corporations based, in part, on enrollment. The state is returning to holding two official count days each school year to determine the number of students in each corporation. Hartley added, “At this point, we’re projecting to only see about four-tenths of a percent increase in the next year.”

A referendum that would have raised taxes by up to 19 cents per $100 of assessed evaluation failed to pass in the primary election. They were seeking the increase for student safety initiatives, mental health support and programs, and attracting and retaining teachers.”

Hartley indicted that the failed vote on the referendum means the corporation won’t have the funding to add safety personnel or social workers. Speaking during the legislative report portion of the board meeting, he said consistent salary and wage increases are less certain.

He said, “I intend to communicate some recommendations to you that would show how we can absorb some things through attrition at next monthly meeting, in order to still make sure we are fiscally responsible.”

In other matters, the board approved the sale of a semi trailer that had been used to transport band equipment. The bid of $1,200 from John Glenn Schools was the only bid.

The board also approved advertising for sealed bids for improvements to HVAC systems at Plymouth High School. The upgrades include a chiller and unit ventilators in some of the classrooms. It was noted that the new units will be installed vertically allowing more air flow.

They will hold a construction meeting on May 28 for potential bidders, accept bids until June 11 and bring the bids before the board at the July Board meeting.

Carol Anders Correspondent