Franklin board observes moment of silence for teacher

FRANKLIN – The Franklin School Board began its meeting Monday with a moment of silence in memory of former teacher, coach, athletic director and school board member with the Franklin school district William Mook.

Mook, who served on the school board from from 2010 through 2015, died Friday.

In his comments at the start of the meeting, board president Brian Spaid noted Mook’s many roles with the school district and added those of friend, husband and father.

“He touched many lives,” Spaid said.

During the meeting that followed, the board discussed a number of items that will be up for a vote at next week’s meeting, set for 7 p.m. Monday at Sandycreek Elementary School.

Schedule change

The school board will consider a change to the middle and high school schedule for the coming year. The change is included in the update to the middle school handbook, which is on the board’s agenda for possible approval.

High school principal Gary Canfora explained the proposed changes to the board.

The lunch period under the current schedule is 40 minutes long. Canfora described that time span as about 10 minutes too long and said the excess time is creating a window of opportunity for student mischief. As a result, Canfora and middle school principal Chris Cohlhepp are proposing to cut the lunch period by 10 minutes, with those minutes added back into the school day as instructional time. They are also proposing a shift of the activity/remediation period from 10th period to sixth period. Canfora said some students are not taking the activity/remediation period seriously because it is at the end of the day.

Community college

Also on the agenda will be a resolution in support of the Rural Regional College of Northern Pennsylvania, a community college planned for Venango, Forest, Warren, Crawford, Erie, McKean, Potter, Elk and Cameron.

Superintendent Pamela Dye explained that the board approved a similar resolution in November 2013 with the Education Consortium of the Upper Allegheny and agreed to permit the consortium to use district buildings for free.

The Education Consortium of the Upper Allegheny is serving as the project executive, and is overseeing the development of the operational and financial plans for the new community college, which intends to offer affordable and accessible associate degrees, certificates and training programs aligned with the needs of regional employers to residents of the nine counties.

Summer school

Two summer school programs will also be up for board approval:

The Literacy for the Family program, which provides literacy instruction over the summer for families at Arbor Circle and Myrtle Circle is the first.

Curriculum and federal programs coordinator Ann Black said the program is funded by the Community Services Block Grant, which is administered by Venango County human services.

The Title 1 Family Center program, which provides for eligible students to receive instruction in their homes over the summer is the second.

Black said the district’s reading specialist and classroom teachers identify children for the program.

Monday’s meeting ended with an executive session to discuss matters of personnel.