The Conewago Valley School District named its new assistant superintendent during the school board’s meeting on Monday evening.
Dr. Robert Walker was unanimously voted in to fill the role, which has been left empty since Dr. Sharon Perry left the position and became the district superintendent on Dec. 1, 2021. Perry has been providing reports to the board for both the superintendent and assistant superintendent roles.
Walker is expected to begin work on June 2, or “upon release from his previous district,” according to the agenda notes.
During her report to the board, Perry also applauded the recent student production of “Shrek the Musical.”
“It’s something that our community truly looks forward to,” Perry said. “There was a lot of scuttle in the community about how good it was, how funny it was and how perfect the characters were for those who played it.”
Lynne Miller, supervisor of the student services office, said the district passed its McKinney-Vento monitoring “with flying colors.”
The Education for Homeless Children and Youths (EHCY) program is part of the McKinney-Vento Homeless Education Assistance Improvements Act and is intended to ensure homeless children have access to the same level of education as their peers, according to the Pennsylvania Department of Education.
Miller said there were several positive elements to point out.
“There were a few technical things that we definitely did well, but what made me really proud as a Colonial was that there were so many opportunities for me to share the things that our whole school community does to support those in need: pictures of closets full of clothes, school supplies, toiletries that can be shared with anyone in need, multiple Christmas programs that are run by the building teachers and students alike,” Miller told the board. “Just so many different opportunities to work together as a team to support the Colonial family.”
Miller said the district is also pursuing a mental health grant that could help support its teens. Conewago and the Upper Adams school district have teamed up in hopes of winning a grant.
“Their target is going to be to create a staff member for their roles where they would be able to go between the two different districts at the high school level and create a check in/check out program for the high school students that are at risk – dropping out, disciplinary infractions– to really give them a person to connect to at the school where they’re doing a daily check in,” Miller said.
Miller said the district and its partners won’t know the outcome of the application until closer to the end of the school year. She said the team is already beginning to plan how it will finance the program after the two-year grant limit should it receive the funds.
Miller also noted that the next Title One family night will be held on May 4 at Conewago Township Elementary School and will include a pet theme.
Multiple individuals and groups were recognized during the meeting, including Sydney Christner, the first-place winner of the Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) Voice of Democracy speech contest. According to the agenda notes, Christner will participate in the national competition this month.
According to a January press release from the Pennsylvania VFW, Christner is a junior at New Oxford High School and received an award of $5,000 along with other prizes. The theme this year was: “America: Where do we go from here?”
Christner was one of 2,196 students competing in the contest, according to the release.
One young artist, Lilliana Mejia, was recognized by the board for creating the art that will be used on the district’s planned birthday card.
Makenzie Yingling was honored for being named the Rotary Club’s New Oxford High School Student of the Month in February.
The board also learned that there were 76 inductees recognized during the high school’s second annual honor society induction on March 3, with 22 students admitted to honor societies.
Autumn Zaminksi, principal of Conewago Township Elementary, said community members are invited to the school’s first Color Run. The event will be held from 9:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m Friday, May 20.
The board held an executive session following the public meeting in order to discuss legal matters.
The board’s next study session is scheduled for 7 p.m. Monday, April 4.
The next regular meeting will be held at 7:30 p.m. Monday, April 11.
Both meetings are scheduled to take place in the district office. Meetings are also livestreamed on the district’s YouTube channel.
Imari Scarbrough is a freelance journalist. She was a staff newspaper reporter for five years before becoming a freelancer in 2017. She has written on crime, environmental issues, severe weather events, local and regional government and more.
You can visit her website at ImariJournal.com.