BOE approves sale of Milford Main

The Milford Board of Education approved the sale of Milford Main tonight to CMC Properties, the same company that developed the Riverwalk Flats apartments & condominiums in downtown Milford, as well as many properties in Greater Cincinnati.  Details on the sale can be found here. Continue reading

Highlights from 6/19/14 school board meeting

District evaluates required testing
Credit Flex provides unique option for some students

Here are the highlights from last week’s board meeting.  There are no athletic or extracurricular reports during the summer.

  • Last month, we recognized MJHS seventh graders for “Paying It Forward” this spring. Now, we’d like to extend a formal “Thank You!” to the bus drivers who very generously gave of their time to drive these students around. They are (in alphabetical order): Sandra Coyle, Dean Hamilton, Pam Light, Rachel Light, John Rettig, Rhonda Robinson, Kym Salas, Libby Sheehy, Renee Tucker, and Mindy Wilson.
  • The school board approved new science materials to be used starting in the 2014-15 school year. In the younger grades, the National Geographic program was chosen as it is very interactive and provides lots of great exercises and other options to engage children. One of the best features is having our own National Geographic Scientist, who will come out to work with children and present on different topics!
  • The construction projects are on time with work progressing smoothly. Classroom design is ongoing, as are surveying needs. A test of geothermal potential is being conducted to see if this is a viable option. A public forum will be held probably in early September to update the community about where we are with the two new elementary schools.
  • Food Services reports meal sales overall are steady. The district has a unique model where we service not only Milford, but a number of other schools as well. This allows us to truly cover our costs – not only the direct costs, which is what most schools look at, but indirect costs such as custodial, utilities, administrative support, etc. This summer, Food Service personnel will be participating in the Cook for America program through a grant. They will learn more about cooking from scratch for large groups, which will help provide meals that taste better and are healthier for our children.

District evaluates required testing

Dr. Jill Chin, Director of Elementary Curriculum, and Mrs. Nancy House, Director of Secondary Curriculum, led an effort to evaluate the testing being given at each grade level. The goal was to identify which tests are absolutely necessary either because of legal requirements or because we believe they help our students’ academic development. The results were surprising – and frustrating. Continue reading

Credit Flex provides unique option for some students

In a world filled with testing, it sometimes seems our children have no room to breathe in their educational process. Yet for high schoolers, legislators have also provided an option that is diametrically opposed to the rigidity created by a full testing schedule. Continue reading

Highlights from 5/15/14 school board meeting

MHS track named “Bill Marran track”
May 2014 Five Year Forecast approved
Milford JHS participates in second Pay It Forward Day
MHS recognizes 2014′s Top 25 academic students
Sixth grade column contest teaches persuasive writing in fun way
Athletic Update

A tremendous amount happened not only at the May 15, 2014 school board meeting, but also the following Monday (May 19) and Thursday (May 22). Here are the highlights:

  • Dave Meranda and Nancye Bruck were recognized for their service to the Milford school district through the Athletic Boosters. These two impressive leaders have worked for several decades combined, working to help raise hundreds of thousands of dollars for the district and our students in a variety of ways – the most recent of which is the turf football field, the single-largest donation the Athletic Boosters have made.
  • Students in the Future Educators of America program were recognized for their accomplishments at the National FEA Conference. Read more here.
  • DECA students Gered Lockwood, Ben Saulnier and Madison Kemp were recognized as National Level DECA competitors.
  • Erin Gottsacker was recognized for being named to the Ohio Music Educators Association All-State Band, where she played First Chair clarinet.
  • The softball team was recognized for winning the first league championship in Milford School history. Click here to read more (along with a surprising report on sportsmanship from a Track & Field event).
  • The Milford Schools Foundation awarded its spring grants, bringing the total it has awarded in the years since its inception to over $181,000! This year, the Foundation awarded $21,900 in grants for a variety of items. Click here to see the grants that were awarded.
  • The Milford Schools Foundation has a number of events coming up. They will have their second annual golf outing in October; last year’s was very successful. Also in October, they will hold a jeans day for Milford staff, where staff can wear jeans if they make a donation to the Foundation. The annual Night of the Stars, a fundraiser, dinner and event to honor alumni, will be Saturday, November 1. The Wednesday before the winter break will be “funny dress day,” another in-school fundraiser. And finally, the Foundation is encouraging voluntary payroll deductions from Milford staff members to help support the organization that supports them.  Visit their website here.
  • Jeff Johnson, Operations Manager, presented an update on the construction project for the two new elementaries. Information, including sketches & floor plans, can be found here.
  • On Monday, May 19, the district held a public auction for Milford Main and Seipelt Elementary. No bids were received. The auction is the first step in the sale process for publicly-owned buildings; the district is now free to accept private offers and negotiate outside the public process. The district has already received one proposal and has heard of more interest.
  • At a special board meeting on Thursday, May 22, the board approved a new transportation contract. After opening the process through a Request for Proposals, Operations Manager Jeff Johnson received and reviewed three bids. One company did not meet the requirements of the RFP; the other two proposals, from Petermann and First Student, were both excellent and competitive. After a thorough review and evaluation, Mr. Johnson and Dr. Farrell recommended accepting the five-year Petermann contract. This new contract saves the district appr. $500,000/year vs. the current contract, and also provides more technology for our buses.

MHS track named “Bill Marran track”

At the May 15, 2014 board meeting, the Milford BOE was proud to recognize Bill Marran, 31-year teacher and 50-year track coach, for his years of service.  As Bill was recognized, he also received a big surprise:  the board approved a resolution naming the high school track after him, making it the Bill Marran track.  Bill has coached an estimated 1,850 boys and 650 girls during his tenure as a coach!

These are the comments Activities Director Mark Trout made when announcing the MHS track will become the Bill Marran track.  At the end of the comments is the resolution passed by the board.

Bill Marran has coached at Milford since 1963. Fifty years. This is his 50th consecutive season of coaching track with a specialty of hurdlers/sprinters. He has also coached football and basketball at Milford for many years.

Some stats and highlights:

  • 52 years coaching total – 50 at Milford in track/basketball/football – 2 at CNE
  • Bill has coached approx. 1,500 track athletes (just in track – not including other sports)
  • He has coached 16 State Qualifiers in Track: 12 boys and 4 girls
  • He’s been the Head Boys Track Coach for 7 years
  • His Highest Finish = 2nd place in the GMC (1990-91)
  • Bill was also a Milford teacher for 31 years (33 years total teaching service)

Bill was inducted into the Milford Athletic Boosters Club Hall of Fame: Class of 2007

As person, I don’t think Bill has ever met a stranger. He enjoys the art of conversation. My favorite Bill story – everyone has one – it’s the Junior High basketball season, in the early to mid ‘90’s. I’m coaching 7th grade.  Bill is the assistant to Jim Panko for the 8th grade team. At halftime, it’s my job to watch clock; Jim comes out to the court, but no Bill or team. “Bill is talking to the squad,” Jim says.  We wait. Chat. Wait. At about bout 30 seconds to spare, the team comes running out with Bill still talking in the ear of the last kid in line. I was concerned about the team getting out to take the floor on time; Bill was concerned about teaching kids how to play the game. Probably a happy medium in there somewhere, but Bill is consummate teacher. He’s always instructing. He’s always such a joy to be around.

We want to take this opportunity to say thank you to Bill for 50 years of service to our district and most importantly, to our kids. On behalf of the EAC, I am thrilled to recommend to the Superintendent and Board of Education that the MEVSD track be officially named the “Bill Marran Track” in honor of Coach Marran’s extraordinary dedication and commitment to coaching in the Milford Athletic Program.

Thank you!

This is the Resolution read by Gary Knepp and unanimously approved by the board:

Whereas Bill Marran has been a valued employee of the Milford Exempted Village School District for 50 years – 31 as a teacher and 50 years as a coach;

Whereas Bill Marran has coached an estimated 1,850 boys and 650 girls during his tenure as a track coach at Milford;

Whereas Bill Marran has coached twelve boys and four girls who were state qualifiers in track;

NOW THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the Milford Board of Education, in recognition of Bill Marran’s half-century of exemplary service to our student athletes, does hereby name the Milford High School track – the Bill Marran track.

May 2014 Five Year Forecast approved

At the May 2014 meeting, the board approved the revised five-year forecast, which must be updated every year.  The forecast shows revenues are up $3.6 million this fiscal year due to several different sources.  It also shows revenue increases of $3.1 million in fiscal years 2015-18, the other years covered in the forecast.  In addition, expenses for this year are down slightly over $600,000, but this is really a trade as textbook purchases of $636,000 have been delayed until next year.

For compensation, the current forecast includes the estimated amount for “steps” in the budget, which is appr. 2% of the compensation budget.  The district is currently in negotiations with the union for the next contract; the current contract expires this fiscal year.  We are estimating a 10% increase in benefits as a best-guess moving forward with the new self-insured health plan.

When the Milford school district community passed the operating levy last May, the district promised to work to stretch those levy funds at least four years.  Under this forecast, this is definitely possible.  Treasurer Debbie Caudle has been realistic yet conservative in her projections, and the forecast shows a balance at the end of FY2018 of $3.3 million – significantly better than it has been.

However, it is also important to note how tight our budget is:  even with the increases in revenue we received this year and expect to receive over the next four years, our ending balance in FY2018 is only just stable.  If these assumptions hold true, a levy will be needed no later than that year to carry us on in the black.

The current board and administration are committed to managing our funds wisely to continue to provide a high level of education while keeping expenses reasonable.

Here is the Powerpoint Mrs. Caudle presented to the board:  Five_Year_Forecast 2014 Board Presentation May 2014