Cleveland Heights-University Heights Board of Education and Cleveland Heights City Council joint meeting highlights 6-26-2017

JUNE 26, 2017

  • Board of Education topics
  • Superintendent's update
  • Cleveland Heights City Council topics

School board members present were Vice President Kal Zucker, Jim Posch, Eric Silverman and Beverly Wright. Board President Ron Register was absent. Also present were Superintendent Talisa Dixon and Treasurer Scott Gainer.

City council members present were Mayor Cheryl Stephens, Vice Mayor Jason Stein, Mary Dunbar, Carol Roe, Kahlil Seren, Melissa Yasinow and Michael Ungar. City Manager Tanisha Briley was also present.

The meeting began at 7 p.m. and was adjourned at 8:15 p.m.

Board of Education topics

High school opening: The high school will open on time on Aug. 1. A convocation will be held on Aug. 18, and the community open house will be on Sept. 10. The middle school facilities update will be given at the June 27 board of education meeting. (The community is concerned about the middle school plans.)

IB at middle schools: A new principal is at Monticello, and the middle schools are now classified as International Baccalaureate (IB) schools, with a rigorous program. This designation ensures a smooth transition to the IB program at the high school.

United Way: The community and the schools task force have partnered with United Way.

Superintendent's update

No school will be closed at this time. The board is considering a grade 5–6 and grade 7–8 middle school configuration. This will be discussed at the June 27 board meeting.

Cleveland Heights City Council topics

The city master plan: City Manager Briley said the city master plan has strategies in place and is moving forward on housing issues. A report will be available soon. The projects include the Top of the Hill property, which has a new development partner. The city wants effective use of the land and housing, and discussed the Center-Mayfield project in regard to this issue. The Coventry land and former school building were also discussed, with the board and city agreeing on a memorandum of understanding that tenants of the building will be guaranteed a one-year lease. The school board has no use for [the Coventry site] and does not want to be a landlord. The city and board must get public input to plan for the use of the school building and land. [Many in the audience were concerned community members wanting to know about the fate of the Coventry site.]

Streetscape update: The update included the repaving of the Cedar Fairmount Business district using federal monies, and the Cedar Lee area.

Safe routes to school update: Lighting has been improved at the intersection of Cedar and Lee roads to make it a safer route to the high school. Solar flashing speed panels were installed at the schools. Crosswalk signage and traffic signals have been improved. Mary Dunbar spoke about the bicycle program in which bikes will be used in physical education classes.

Welcoming city designation: The city’s refugee population is growing. City Council discussed seeking a "welcoming city" designation for the city instead of “a sanctuary city.” There are more complications to being a sanctuary city.

LWV Observer: Lillian Houser.

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These reports contain member observation and selected highlights of public meetings and are not official statements of the Heights Chapter of the League of Women Voters of Greater Cleveland. This disclaimer must accompany any redistribution of these reports.

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Volume 10, Issue 8, Posted 2:18 PM, 07.25.2017