BLANCHESTER — Retiring teachers and student accomplishments took center stage at Monday’s Blanchester Local Schools Board of Education meeting.
Jeri Earley, principal of Putman Elementary, recognized three retiring staff members at the meeting: second grade teacher Lillian McCann, kindergarten teacher Kathy Garrett, and paraprofessional Sharon Stewart.
“(Garrett) has dedicated her entire 26 years career to teaching,” said Earley. “(McCann) has dedicated 29 years to teaching, 28 of those were here at Blanchester. Sharon Stewart has been here also for 26 years. She’s been in lots of different roles and is an amazing individual.”
Earley called them dynamic individuals who poured their “heart and soul” into the community and wished them luck in retirement.
Blanchester Middle School Principal Ryan Briggs next honored retiring sixth grade teacher Jackie Uhrig.
“For me, it’s an honor to recognize her. She’s had to put up with me a few different times throughout her life. I was a student of hers … it was a pleasure to have her as a teacher. Then I had her as a colleague at East Clinton. I can tell you I was thrilled to hire her as a teacher here at Blanchester,” said Briggs.
He went on to talk about how Uhrig had great relationships with students and staff, and he wished her luck in retirement.
The Blanchester High School Principal Pandy McCarty recognized sophomore student Mary Chapin for her recent participation in the National DECA Competition in Orlando, Fla. in April.
DECA, as Chapin told the board, is a program that helps students learn about business, entrepreneurship, finance, and marketing.
Chapin told the board her personal category was marketing/communication.
“I was given a 100-question exam, which is part of my competition. So, I had to score pretty well on my exam. Then I was given a scenario to present to the judges. So I was given 10 minutes to come up with a solution of what I think would be best … and 10 minutes to explain my solution to the judges,” she said.
She told the board she scored in the 60th percentile.
Athletic director Brad Ballinger recognized three students for their athletic accomplishments. Gabriel Staehling was recognized for his accomplishments in SBAAC Track and Field where he championed in discus and shot-put.
Harne Reeves was recognized for her accomplishments at the State Track and Field Meet where she placed second in the high jump and eighth in the 100m dash.
The last to be recognized was Bryce Sipple, who was noted as a SBAAC First Team All-Star and his accomplishments in football, basketball, and baseball.
Also during the meeting:
• The board approved a recommended increase to school lunch by 25 cents due to increasing food costs.
• The board accepted a $2,500 donation from the Ohio State Eagles. The money is to be used for physical education at Putman Elementary.
• The board will host a special meeting on May 22 to approve the five-year forecast and approve various contracts.
Reach John Hamilton at 937-382-2574