Cleveland Heights-University Heights Board of Education meeting highlights 6-5-2018

JUNE 5, 2018


  • Recognitions
  • Public comments
  • Board approvals
  • Master facilities plan amendment
  • Grading task force update
  • Gifted program update
  • Early childhood program
  • District policy readings


President Jim Posch, Vice President Jodi Sourini, Dan Heintz and Beverly Wright were present. Malia Lewis was absent. Superintendent Dr. Talisa Dixon and Treasurer Scott Gainer were also present. After an executive session at 6 p.m. to meet with the board’s legal counsel, a reception was held to honor district retirees. The board reconvened in open session at 7 p.m. and adjourned at 9:25 p.m.


The board recognized the Heights High Career Tech cosmetology program students for handcrafting and donating wigs to local cancer patients. Two Heights robotics teams won first and second place in regional competition and won fifth in national competition. Student artist award winners were recognized.

Tiger Team members of the month and retiring staff were recognized. The retiring staff members include Marcy Joublanc, Heights High; Cindy Schmidt, Oxford; Rosia Pickens, Gearity; Barbra Finnemore, Boulevard; Maureen Christy, Fairfax; Bambi Vargo, Boulevard; Julie Lustic, Canterbury; Rita Haag, Canterbury; Bernard Harmon, Roxboro Middle; Arthur Catalano, Heights High; Judith Goral, Heights High; Nancy Arpin, Boulevard; Dalinda Miles, Fairfax; Vernae Robinson, Heights High; and Charles Szaniszio, Monticello.

Public comments

Broadband network: A citizens committee asked the school board, as well as city council, to consider a resolution for the city to establish a municipal broadband service and so have the chance to expand the broadband network to 100 percent of Cleveland Heights homes.

Board approvals

Social studies curriculum: The board approved adoption of the final reading of the recommendation and the piloting of the curriculum.

Donations: The board accepted more than $14,000 from various donors.

Motions: The board authorized continued membership in the Ohio High School Athletic Association for 2018-2019.

Master facilities plan amendment

The original Ohio Facilities Construction Commission master facilities plan, based on the facilities levy, requires amendment because of funding changes due to expenses for the high school renovation. Consequently, the middle and elementary school plans changed, and the Ohio Facilities Commission needs to adjust the master plan and funding. The board approved the amendment with Jodi Sourini, objecting to how elementary schools were affected, voting nay.

Grading task force update

Felisha Gould, assistant superintendent, presented an update on the grading task force’s work. Their findings support the district’s system of grading using several formats in the elementary grades and letter grades in the upper classes.

Gifted program update

Ms. Gould said the gifted program complied with new legislation requiring specific academic content and teacher professional development.

Early childhood program

Danielle Vigh, early childhood specialist, gave an update for the 2017-2018 program. There were 143 children in the program at three sites: Gearity, Noble and Oxford. Data show that the early childhood model improves district scores, increases math and language proficiency, and literacy, and provides social foundations for students.

District policy readings

The second reading of district policies group A were discussed. These policies included a criminal history record check as a condition of employment and periodically thereafter, drug and alcohol testing for district employees whose job requires a commercial driver’s license, and school safety. The first reading of group B policies was presented and included resident and non-resident eligibility for attendance, drug prevention, lending of board-owned equipment, and staff acceptable use of technology.

Upcoming meetings are a work session on June 19, 2018, at 7 p.m. at the Board of Education offices.

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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