Punxsy School Board opts not to cut support staff hours, hears stats on cyber school

Staff Writer

Following a discussion last week that left members of the Punxsutawney Area School Board hesitant on a proposed change to support staff hours, the board made no action on the proposal at its voting meeting on Tuesday, and it died due to the lack of a motion.

As quickly as the meeting began, it was temporarily adjourned as the board went to an executive session to discuss personnel. The session lasted approximately 25 minutes. When the board approached the item dealing with cuts to support staff hours in the agenda, board members expressed trepidation on how to deal with the change. It was discussed if tabling it or voting it down would be the best option, until the board ultimately decided to not make a motion on the item and let it die that way. Because of this action, the health assistants, instructional assistants, special education instructional assistants, sign language interpreter and monitors will all see no changes to their hours. The proposal would have cut the hours of these members of the support staff by either half an hour or one full hour.

Statistics on what method of education that students will be partaking in were also provided to the board at the meeting. At the elementary school, 40 students have opted to partake in the blended program while 136 have chosen to go to the district's eAcademy cyber school program. The high school will have 68 students taking part in the blended schedule, and 76 opting for eAcademy. Superintendent Dr. Thomas Lesniewski did note that these numbers will likely change as it gets closer to the school year.