Forestville school board honors accomplishments

By NICOLE GUGINO

OBSERVER Assistant News Editor

FORESTVILLE – Accomplishments were highlighted at the recent Forestville Board of Education meeting.

The night began by honoring retirees. Teachers Nicki Shoenl, Beth Runkel and Carol Borowczyk were thanked for their service to the district.

“She really is great. It’s an environment in that room where it’s like an escape for kids. They are able to go to the art room and do what they love and get some advice from someone that is an expert but also has the gentle spirit of a mom … I wish that you weren’t leaving but I am happy for you,” Superintendent Charles Leichner said of Runkel’s classroom.

Also retiring at the end of the school year is Board Clerk Eleanor Hebner after 50 years of service to the district.

“It’s hard to put into words in a few moments what represents a lifetime of service … This is a person who went not only attended school here and worked here, but has committed her life to the place. So much of what we enjoy is directly or indirectly a result of the work that she has done,” Leichner said.

Also speaking on Hebner’s behalf were Board Vice President Carol Woodward, thanking her for her help and a lot of laughs and Elementary Principal Daniel Grande reflected back on a blizzardy day when he followed her home to make sure she made it and found himself lost in the hills.

Hebner thanked the board, parents and students for her great time at the school and wished them the best.

The board also heard a presentation from the knitting club. Math Teacher Pat Miller explained how knitting helps children learn skills like problem solving, hand-eye coordination, concentration, perseverance and creativity as well as being able to give back to the community and develop a connection to family and older generations through the craft.

Students displayed their work from socks to animals and baby clothes and also gave each member of the board a handmade dishcloth to take home.

Miller said in the three years the knitting club has been in existence there have been 45 members, including 16 boys and 29 girls.

Also honored at the meeting were students of good character by a focus group of local clergy. Awards were given to seventh through twelfth graders, in ascending order, Caroline Kaicher, Emily Gizowski, Kessiah Johnson, Sarah Pleva, Cecilee Sager and Kendra Catalano.

The board also approved coaching appointments and staffing eliminations made in the budget.

Substitute wages changes were also discussed in regards to increased minimum wage. No action was taken on this.

Board President Sylvester Cleary also reported the Parent Connection proposing an addition to the playground equipment at the elementary school. He said it has asked the school purchase and maintain the ground cover wood chips which will cost approximately $2,300 every two to three years. No action was taken on this.

The board will meet next on July 11 at 6 p.m.