Earth moving begins at Ridgemont building site

Ridgemont Schools

Ridgemont Board of Education members were updated during their Thursday evening meeting on happenings at the new pre-K through 12 school construction site located just outside of Mt. Victory.

Superintendent Emmy Beeson reported that earth movers are in place and have begun cutting in driveways and leveling dirt. A fence secures the perimeter of the new building site.

Staff, students and community members will be able to watch the construction process through the upcoming installation of a web camera at the building site, with time lapsed video available at the district’s Web site,

Members also honored the school’s FFA Chapter for being selected as one of the Top 10 FFA Chapters in the state for the seventh year in a row at the Ohio FFA Convention. The 83-member Ridgemont FFA, led by adviser Stephanie Jolliff, received the State for Chapter Model of Innovation Award.

In addition to the board’s recognition, Rob McPheron, Ohio School Board’s Association representative and Bath Local School Board member, honored the Ridgemont FFA for their presentation on student achievement at the North West Region Spring Conference.

Another agriculture-related honor was presented to the Cromer Family, who were one of seven farms in the nation to receive 2014 Member of Distinction Award by the American Dairy Farmers Association. The board recognized Amanda Cromer, a district bus driver, and her husband, Nate, and their children, Ridgemont students Meadow, Callie and Jonathan.

Regarding changes for the new school year, Bev Wasserbeck, food service coordinator, shared about increasing regulations to the school lunch program. She said the new requirements will include a full cup of fruit in every meal and a decrease in sodium amounts. Proposals also are in place to regulate the education a food service coordinator must have to be employed by a school district.

The board also approved the continuation of its shared service agreement with the North Union School District to share the cost of Ms. Wasserbeck’s salary.

Dean of Students Jill Stover presented the board’s gift to retiring teacher, Janet Purdin, junior/senior high school science, who has worked in the district for 17 years.

Members voted to have a resolution forwarded to members of the 130th General Assembly, the governor and other state officials regarding opposition to the removal of the standard of “thorough and efficient” from Article VI, section 2 of the Ohio Constitution.

This constitutional provision has required the General Assembly to secure a thorough and efficient system of common schools, and it has held the State of Ohio to a high standard for more than 160 years, members reported.

In other action, the board:

• accepted the resignations of Kendra Pierson and Lynn Slone, high school teachers;

• hired Zach Balch was hired as a new grades 7-12 science teacher;

• recognized the Ridgemont Community Alumni Association as a school support organization; member Cheryl France noted that the group will work to strengthen homecoming and reunite members of the Ridgemont classes; and

• accepted the following donations: servers and training from the Ohio Hi-Point Career Center, servers from Byhalia Communications, and $9,990 from the Ridgemont Parent-Teacher Organization to purchase Chromebooks.

The next meeting is 5 p.m. June 26 at the high school library.