Windham – The Windham Board of Education (BOE) voted at their latest meeting to withdraw from the Portage Trail Conference (PTC) effective in 2013-2014 school year. The district will enter the Northeast Athletic Conference (NAC) which is comprised of small schools like Lordstown, Bristol, Southington, and Maplewood. Superintendent Gregg Isler stated that “It was a bittersweet for me because I am a graduate of Windham schools and have deep ties to the PTC.” He also stated that “The league has been very good to Windham but we needed to do this for the kids.” The declining enrollment in the district and the rapid growth in the PTC played a role in their decision. Isler stated that the Ohio High School Athletic Association (OHSAA) increasing the number of volleyball games and basketball games played each season by two will ensure Windham will still be able to play rivals like Garfield. This was an important factor in the decision. When asked if he thought the rivalry with Garfield would die with the two schools not in the same conference he said he didn’t think it would change anything. The change will not go into effect until the 2013-2014 school year.
In other board news, the board approved a contract with the teachers’ union. Principal Chaffee stated that they have a good relationship with the union and was pleased that an agreement was reached. Superintendent Isler stated that earlier this year the district had 24 proposed layoffs to balance the districts budget. After retirements, elective class adjustments, and staff adjustments the board announced that they only had to R.I.F. (Reduction in Force) two employees. The BOE was able to re-instate music and band at 70% of what they had and choir at 50% of what they once had. They were also able to re-instate art for the junior and senior high schools.
The BOE accepted the resignation of Elementary Principal Joanne Brookover, and the retirements of Claudia Hoover, and Sharon Versch. One year contracts were awarded to Principal Mike Chaffee, and Technology Coordinator Brian Shanower both effective August 1, 2011. Other contracts issued were Diane Ewing as head cook, Robert Kujala as Director of Special Services/Assistant Principal, and Jeff McCune, Maintenance/mechanic.
The BOE meets on the fourth Thursday of each month at 7pm at the high school.