Students aren’t the only ones counting hours and minutes until the last day of school.

The Neshannock Township School District last week approved revisions to its school calendar to ensure students and teachers are spending enough time in the classrooms this year.

Dr. Terence Meehan, superintendent, said the harsh winter this year left the district with 11 two-hour delays and four missed days due to snow. Feb. 16, President’s Day, became a snow day makeup day. The other three days, he said, will be converted to Act 80 days, to be used for staff development.

“Students will still get out June 5; teachers will have in-service on June 8 and 9,” he said. “The state looks at hours of instruction provided.”

Meehan said Neshannock exceeds the required hours.

Under state guidelines, he said, students in grades seven through 11 must have 990 hours of instruction. Neshannock provides 1,029 hours. Students of grades one to six are required 900 hours, they receive 1,063.

By tacking on the additional days at the end of the school year, he said, teachers are putting in 186 days. Students have 181 days of school.

The board also:

•Authorized by a 7-1 vote with board member Cathy Snyder opposing, board solicitor Michael Bonner to serve as chief negotiator on contracts between the district and the Neshannock Education Support Professionals union which includes secretarial, custodial, para-professional workers and bus drivers. The current contract expires June 30.

•Agreed to solicit proposals for an energy efficiency plan to explore options the district might have to save money by adjusting energy use.

•Approved Alicia Measel as director for Camp Invention; Stephanie Peluso for assistant director; Bobbi Medure, Chelsea Phillian, Jennifer Flannery, Leanne Memo and Danielle Norge as instructors and Heather Collins as school nurse. All will be paid $1,500. The board also approved four assistants at $500 each, 10 counselors at $125 each and Connie Fiorante, who oversees these programs, at $500.

•Hired Mike Zuzow as substitute bus driver; Kirsten Firmi as substitute social studies teacher and Tiffani Suszynski as substitute in elementary and pre-kindergarten.

•Approved the 2015-16 school calendar with the first day of school as Aug. 31, and the last day June 8.

•Accepted the resignation of Patricia Walzer as special needs bus monitor, effective the last day of classes at Watson Institute in Sewickley. Walzer will remain with the district.

•Approved Regina Manos as head advisor for the Neshannock Lancerettes at $2,251 for the 2015-16 school year.

•Accepted by a 7-1 vote with board member Mark Hasson opposing, the resignations of Marissa Hannon, Christina McCaskey and Nicole Canciello as varsity, junior varsity and junior high cheerleading advisors.

•Hired by 7-1 vote with board member Jay Vitale opposing, Brigette Scala as cheerleading advisor at $3,748. Two additional positions will be filled.

•Authorized dual enrollment of Neshannock students with Butler County Community College for the 2015-16 school year.

•Nominated board member Karen Houk as a candidate for the IU-IV board. Houk is a current board member; her term expires June 30.

•Approved the Midwestern Intermediate Unit IV general operating budget for the 2015-16 school year. The district’s contribution is $20,643.

(Email: nlowry@ncnewsonline.com)

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