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Penns Manor directors appoint new board member

by on January 04, 2014 10:54 AM

KENWOOD — Penns Manor Area School District officials filled the vacancy on its school board of directors at a special meeting Thursday.

Richard Polenik, of Pine Township, will serve as the district’s newest school board member, filling the opening for the district’s Region III.

He was one of two candidates who stepped forward last month after the district advertised the vacancy.

The other was Carol Polenik. Thomas “T.J.” Kakabar, superintendent of the school district, said he did not know if the two were related.

The school board position was left open after the November elections when a write-in candidate declined the seat, according to school officials.

“We’re happy now to have the vacancy filled,” Kakabar said. “It’s good to have all nine members represented and have a full board back.”

The district had until Jan. 2 to fill the post. Had no one stepped forward to fill the position, the decision would have been made by the Indiana County Court of Common Pleas, as dictated by Pennsylvania Public School Code.

Richard Polenik will be sworn in at the school on Monday, then attend his first school board meeting as a board member Thursday.

In addition to the appointment, school directors also voted in favor of increasing the salary for the district’s buildings and grounds supervisor from $53,000 to $55,000.

A candidate for the position was selected last month but has yet to accept the offer.

The supervisor position became open when longtime district employee Robert Grumbling died in October. Grumbling had served in the role for seven years. He was Penns Manor Area employee for 26 years.

The job was posted in November. Almost 30 applied for the position, according to district officials.

The supervisor of building and grounds oversees 10 staff members and the upkeep of the district’s 16-acre campus, including its elementary and high school buildings as well as its sewage treatment plant, well, athletic fields and gymnasium.

Julie E. Martin is a staff writer for the Indiana Gazette. Among her assignments are coverage of the Apollo-Ridge School and Penns Manor Area school districts and also White Township.
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