MVRHS committee wraps up the year
The Martha's Vineyard Regional High School (MVRHS) district school committee wrapped up the school year at a meeting Monday night.
In addition to the usual graduation activities and year-end events, committee member Robert Tankard invited everyone to attend a special ceremony at the high school next Tuesday at 2 pm, dedicating the culinary arts dining room to Herb Custer, the vocational program's first director. A reception for Mr. Custer and his family will follow.
The school committee also gave special recognition Monday night to Amy Tierney, assistant to the superintendent for business affairs, as the recipient of a 2006 John F. Conway Distinguished Service Award by the Massachusetts Association of School Business Officials.
Ms. Tierney was nominated for the award by James Weiss, superintendent of Martha's Vineyard Public Schools, for her work in resolving school transportation issues when a bus service contract fell through last fall. Ms. Tierney also helped restructure the transportation department under the school district's management.
In addition to a plaque, Ms. Tierney received a $1,000 scholarship award for the high school from KenMark Office Systems. Kenneth Pedicini, president, and Bill Bradley, vice president, came over from Falmouth to make the presentation.
"This one's really special, to be seen as a distinguished school business professional by your peers," said Ms. Tierney, who has served in her job for almost four years.
In other business, Mr. Weiss reported that the school bus service will be run in-house again next year, as recommended by the transportation committee. In an effort to cut costs and improve efficiency, the school committee approved cutting the number of late buses for students participating in after-school activities to one at 4:15 pm next year.
Turning to finances, the school committee reviewed a report of general fund expenditures to date. Some areas of deficits included heating and utilities costs, building maintenance, substitute special education teacher salaries, and coaches' salaries. Savings were realized in bus transportation, legal fees, insurance costs and county retirement expenses.
MVRHS Principal Margaret (Peg) Regan pointed out there is about $700,000 remaining in the operating budget, "a good margin to have for the last several weeks of school." At her recommendation, the school committee approved moving $200,000 from the excess and deficiency fund into a capital fund for school improvement projects.
The committee's last meeting of the school year also involved a "changing of the guard." After thanking Judi O'Donoghue for her service as chairman, the committee elected Susan Parker of Chilmark as chairman and Susan Mercier of Edgartown as vice chairman for 2006-2007. The committee also welcomed Chad Curtis as the new student council representative.
The next MVRHS district school committee meeting is tentatively scheduled on August 7, 7:30 pm, in the library conference room.