Homer Center sign 002.JPG

Stock news photos. Homer Center High School sign.

An official with the Pennsylvania School Boards Association honored three members of the Homer-Center school board on Thursday for their years of service.

Jim Summerville, of the PSBA, recognized Vicki Smith for 24 years, Gerald Bertig for 16 years and Michael Bertig for eight years of service.

“Public education, in our view, is the cornerstone of democracy,” Summerville said, describing serving on a school board, where there is no compensation, as “the purest form of public service.”

PSBA’s Honor Roll program recognizes board members beginning with eight years of service, then every four years after.

“I love seeing the growth and progress the district has made,” Smith said, reflecting on her 24 years.

She said the district is “blessed” with good families, students, administration and staff.

Her decisions on the board, she said, are always based on putting students first.

Gerald Bertig said the district’s accomplishments are a team effort that include the roles of parents, taxpayers and more.

“It’s been a pleasure to service the community,” said Gerald Bertig of his time on the board. “I would hope that we’re able to make a difference.”

Board President Michael Bertig, among those honored, thanked the members for their service.

In other business Thursday, the board:

• Discussed adding esports competitive online gaming to the district’s offerings for students. Michael Bertig said the board’s academic committee supports the effort and is looking into the cost. He said esports could target a segment of students who may not be involved in other activities.

• Heard from board member James McLouglin on efforts to get a new scoreboard. The current scoreboard is 40 years old and in need of replacement. McLoughlin said fundraising efforts are underway as potential advertisers are sought out. He hopes the new scoreboard will be ready for the next football season.

• Approved the formation of an art club by new art teacher Courtney Scherf.

• Approved a proposal from Industrial Appraisal to conduct an onsite inventory of the district’s fixed assets at a cost of $5,855.

• Adjusted the salary of Business Manager Gregg Kalemba to $88,000, retroactive to July 1.

• Recognized head football coach Greg Page as the winningest coach in school history with a 104 wins and 59 losses. This is his 15th season.

• Moved Gregg Garonzi from head custodian to custodial/grounds once a replacement is found at no change to his current salary.

• Approved Karen Marshall as Marching Band Tech 3 at a supplemental salary of $1,556.31 for the school year.

• Approved the following training requests: Erin Hildeband to PIIC training at ARIN IU 28, retroactive on Sept. 28, and on Oct. 26, Dec. 15, Jan. 25, Feb. 22, March 29 and May 18 at a cost of $75 and one substitute for seven days; Sarah Cook to Open-Ended Responses in Math at ARIN IU 28 retroactive to Sept. 24 and Wednesday, at a cost of $50 and a substitute for two days; Vicki Mallin to the PaTTAN Orientation to Food Service training in Harrisburg, retroactive to Tuesday and Wednesday, at a cost of $542.50 to be split with Purchase Line School District; Jennifer Lieb, Guidance Counselor Council meetings, today, Dec. 13, Feb. 23 and May 19 at ARIN; and Katelin Stossel and Cheryl Turk, Google Certified Educator Level I Boot Camp online, at a cost of $50 each.

• Retroactively approved band trips to IUP’s homecoming parade Oct. 2 and the Tournament of Bands Competition in Johnstown Oct. 16, and in Dubois on Saturday.

• Approved the following use of buildings and grounds: John Darnley and HCBAA, elementary gym, Sept. 13 to Nov. 23, on available evenings from 6 to 9 p.m. for girls’ basketball; Jennifer Ponish for Kai’s Legacy Memorial 3x3 Tournament for setup May 20 and for the event from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. May 21; Adam Marshall and the Homer City Area Athletic Boosters, elementary gym and cafeteria for basketball, through March 11 from 9 a.m. to noon Saturdays and 5 to 9 p.m. Monday through Thursday; Scott Bauer and the baseball team, elementary gym for winter conditioning, Dec. 5, 12 and 19 and Jan. 2, 9, 16, 23 and 30 and Feb. 13, 20 and 27; and William Tonkin and Greg Hartnett, elementary art room for the PA Game Commission course, Nov. 3 and 4 from 3:30 to 6:30 p.m.; and for Christine Yurky and the Indiana County Academic League to use the high school auditorium, LGI, library and room 12 for Quiz Bowl Nov. 16 from 7:30 a.m.m to 2:15 p.m.

• Approved a quote from Joyce Plumbing Heating and Air Conditioning for the elementary office rooftop unit replacement at a cost of $17,300.

• Approved a contract with Johnson Controls Monitoring for the elementary school for $720.

• Approved the following substitute bus drivers: Reno Krehlik, Joy Reha, Jenessa Utberg, Marlene Kerley and Stephen Herby.

• Approved a 45-day placement agreement for a student in New Story for the school year.

• Approved a letter of collaborative agreement with Meraky PA Programs for student placement.

• Approved Jennifer Rowley as a substitute guest teacher through ARIN IU 28.

• Moved Phil Kurek to the position of head custodian at the elementary school effective Nov. 1 at a salary of $14.25 per hour.

• Approved a memorandum of agreement with ARIN IU 28 for ACCESS services in the amount of $8,847.20.

• Approved a tuition agreement with New Story for an elementary student.

• Approved James McLoughlin and Rickey Miller as boys’ basketball assistants.

• Approved an exemption of real estate taxes due on or after Sept. 7 for a disabled veteran.

• Approved FMLA and maternity leave for Heather Lowry, high school teacher, effective in January.

• Will allow the Lady Wildcat Athletic Association to use Memorial Field for a powderpuff football game Nov. 21 from 3 to 8 p.m.