Business Administrator Robert Saul presented the East Penn Board of School Directors with a revised proposed final budget at the March 26 meeting.
Superintendent Dr. Michael Schilder was pleased to inform the directors the proposed tax increase would move from 2.8 percent to 1.92 percent due to increased revenue while the budget reserve remains at 5 percent. Saul explained a new warehouse and apartment complex brought in significantly higher assessments which will bring in tax revenue. The board does not vote on the budget until April 23.
Lydia Panas began collecting blocks of chocolate in 2000. She would find time to focus on her “Chocolate, Hair + Lint” still-life series back then, when she wasn’t busy with family life and raising three young children.
Photographing the combination of lint, chocolate, and her own hair, the work was, “Symbolic of my daily life,” according to the artist.
“The hair was a metaphor for aging, the lint from the children’s clothing was about family, and the chocolate referenced my often-forgotten desires. As markers of time, they recalled what fell away and what was gained.”
The East Penn Board of School Directors received plenty of feedback in the district’s handling of the March 14 National School Walkout by residents and students at the March 26 meeting.
Emmaus High Student Government Association representative Alex Comfort reported on the 17-minute walkout. “Around 800 people, the Stinger reported, had participated in it,” he said, “I just think it was a great demonstration of solidarity among the student body on both sides.”
“Assembled Curiosities” at The Baum School of Art featured mixed media assemblages of Domenick Naccarato and photography by Lindsay Woodruff in the David E. Rodale Gallery, as well as their merged collection of random objects of inspiration in the Rodale Family Gallery.
The two Lehigh Valley artists, who were previously unacquainted, are avid collectors. They find a creative spark in mundane objects and fleeting moments of everyday life.
The East Penn Board of School Directors unanimously approved the district’s 2018-2019 school year calendar at the March 12 meeting. Assistant Superintendent Kristen Campbell incorporated the board’s suggestions from the previous meeting, as well as public input into two new calendar proposals. Both addressed concerns over inclement weather makeup days creating an unpredictable spring break schedule.
The calendar the administration and board favored allows for 185 student days with 191 teacher days beginning Aug. 27 and ending June 11, 2019.
The East Penn Board of School Directors observed a moment of silence at the beginning of the Feb. 26 meeting in memory of the victims of the most recent school shooting.
During a request to address the board, three residents discussed their concerns about school safety in light of the massacre of 17 students and faculty in Parkland, Fla.
Emmaus High School junior Tanaya Mukherjee asked, “How are you planning to make sure that we are safe and we feel safe and nothing like Parkland will ever happen at Emmaus High School?”
The East Penn Board of School Directors’ appetite for updates on the district’s school meal programs was satiated at the Feb. 12 meeting.
Regional Manager Vicky Stahr and her colleagues from The Nutrition Group presented a PowerPoint outline of how they handle both nutritional needs and food-related educational needs of East Penn students.
For the elementary schools, there is “Wellness Wednesday” where once a month, the students are given a taste-testing opportunity combined with nutrition education.
The East Penn Board of School Directors got back to work examining the administration’s 2018-2019 preliminary budget presentation at the Jan. 22 meeting.
Vice President Ken Bacher presided while President Alan Earnshaw was away on business. The Jan. 8 meeting had been canceled because of snow.
In the exhibition, “Still Rendering,” through Jan. 15, Martin Art Gallery, Baker Center for the Arts, Muhlenberg College, artists Anthony Panzera and Chris Coleman apply science and technology to aesthetics.
Leonardo da Vinci’s writings and anatomical renderings are the inspiration for Panzera’s “The Leonardo Series,” including “AP 149” (sanguine pencil on paper with ink on Mylar overlay; 24 in. x 24 in.), above.
An organizational meeting was held Dec. 4 by the East Penn Board of School Directors where newly elected board members Adam Smith and Alisa Bowman, as well as re-elected directors Alan Earnshaw and Ziad Munson were sworn in.
Board Secretary Janine Allen briefly presided over the meeting until Director Paul Champagne was elected president pro tempore. Champagne then swore in the new and returning directors and presided over the election of officers.