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Kevin Mahoney’s 25-year tenure with the Laurel School District will end in November. 

The senior high school co-principal’s resignation was accepted by a unanimous 9-0 vote at Wednesday night’s meeting. Mahoney started his career at Laurel in 1995 as an elementary school teacher. His retirement is effective Nov. 3.

Superintendent Leonard Rich said Mahoney didn’t expand on reasoning for leaving the district in his retirement letter.

“He didn’t enumerate anything related to health or another job opportunity,” Rich said by phone on Thursday. “He just thanked the district for the opportunity and retired.”

Attempts to reach Mahoney were unsuccessful. 

Justin Kirkwood, chairman of the personnel committee, said it’s been an honor and a privilege working with Mahoney as a school director after having been a student of his in grade school.

“You’re a great teacher, friend and dedicated the past 25 years to the Laurel School District community and I’m certainly grateful for your service and I wish you the best of luck in retirement,” Kirkwood said. 

The board also unanimously approved Mark Frengel’s title to be changed to secondary principal for the middle/high school, effective Nov. 3. Mahoney was in charge of middle and high school student affairs.  

There have been discussions on how the district will replace Mahoney. 

“Mr. Frengel’s duties are going to expand,” Rich said. “The board is looking at a number of options to proceed in the short-term and the long-term.”

The board also heard from elementary school principal Dan Svirbly, who said there was a “sizable” shift in students moving from in-person learning to one of the district’s virtual options. The district reported its first positive COVID-19 case, which came from a student, over the weekend. 

“We have the majority of the kids in our school,” Rich said. “We have about 50 per building who chose the synchronous (option). We have about another 10 per building who chose the cyber option. Families are doing what they feel are in the best interests of their families.”

In other action, the board:

•Recognized the tech team of Brent Kosior, Aaron Sickafuse and Sebastian Shaffer. 

•Approved Sarah Dado for FMLA/disability leave from Aug. 18 to Oct. 18.

•Approved the hiring of Lisa Simko (technology education tutor, $21,000 for 187 days); Cynthia Nicklas as a clerical aide ($10 per hour for six hours a day); Lisa Boston as a part-time elementary attendance secretary ($10.50 per hour for six hours a day); Chad Adams as a school police officer ($20 per hour with no other benefits); Jay McBride as a junior high baseball coach ($3,400); Sarah Little ($21,500), Delita Doran ($24,365) and Pamela Bowden ($22,032) as Title I paraprofessionals; Taylor Whetzel as an elementary cafeteria worker ($10.50 per hour) and Buffy McConahy as an elementary manager/cashier/cook ($10.50 per hour for 30 hours per week).

•Approved Rich’s evaluation for the 2019-20 school year as “proficient” by the board of education.

•Approved Angela Murrman to attend a webinar with cost to the district being $85 for a substitute teacher.

•Approved the retirements of Nicole Wade as assistant volleyball and junior high track and field coach, Brooke Knox as assistant girls basketball coach and Megan West as a Title I paraprofessional. Knox was added to the volunteer list.

•Approved a renewal of established service between the district and Johnson Controls for $6,214 for a period between Oct. 1 and Sept. 30, 2021.

•Recognized and approved Jessica Farra as a student teacher. 

•Accepted a bid of $25 for the sale of used lockers to Charles Boyer.

•Approved Sydney Alfara and Michael Avery to compete as independent swimmers representing the district. 

Digital editor

Pete Sirianni is the News' digital editor. Previously, he worked at The Bradford (Pa.) Era. Sirianni is a 2016 IUP graduate, earning a degree in journalism and public relations. Contact him at or on Twitter at @PeterSirianni.

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