The July 9 East Penn School Board meeting began with a debate over parental rights between factions supporting the airing of Gay Straight Alliance student videos during the high school morning announcements in April and those critical of them.
Addressing the board regarding the issue was William Bassett, who begins his senior year at Emmaus High School this fall. Bassett announced “I am gay,” and contended the videos were, “merely informative.”
In a room nearly filled to capacity, the East Penn School Board June 25 meeting began with newly-appointed board member Allan Byrd taking the oath of office. Byrd replaces Alan Earnshaw with his term expiring Dec. 2, 2019.
Director Ken Bacher was elected president by his fellow board members with Director Paul Champagne chosen to serve as vice president.
A reception for “It’s All About Color,” more than 30 colorful works by Ellen Grim Harter on exhibit through July 6 in the David E. Rodale and Rodale Family Galleries, will be held at 6-8 p.m. June 21, at The Baum School of Art, Allentown, as part of Allentown’s Third Thursday series.
As one of nine grandchildren of Walter Emerson Baum, who founded The Baum School of Art and was a founder of the Allentown Art Museum, Harter often watched the artist at work on his sketches and paintings.
With newly-appointed board member Seth Flanders taking the oath of office, the East Penn Board of School Directors voted unanimously to adopt the final 2018-2019 budget with some revisions.
According to Superintendent of Schools Dr. Michael Schilder, the tax increase was reduced to 1.64 percent and the district had enough in the budget to hire an additional science teacher.
The East Penn Board of School Directors selected two new members June 11 during a special public school board meeting.
With President Alan Earnshaw absent and Vice President Ken Bacher at the helm, the East Penn Board of School Directors graciously accepted the resignation of fellow director Chris Donatelli at the end of the May 14 meeting. Donatelli recently purchased a residence in Pennsburg to be closer to his place of employment. He is a plant manager at Performance Filtration Products.
The East Penn Board of School Directors introduced Dr. Joyce Mundy as the first of two final candidates they are considering to fill the shoes of departing school Superintendent Dr. Michael Schilder.
The “Meet and Greet” event May 9 was chaired by Board President Alan Earnshaw who encouraged those in the audience to ask the candidate questions.
“As a teacher at Castle Rock School District for 13 years, I worked in the middle level as a language arts teacher,” Mundy said as she listed her experiences from the beginning of her 25 year career as an educator in Pennsylvania.
The Bethlehem Fine Arts Commission contacted seven area artists to participate in “Putting It Together,” an invitational show through May 31, Rotunda Gallery, Bethlehem Town Hall, 10 E. Church St., Bethlehem.
“Every year we do a curated show with a theme,” says James A. DePietro, a member of the fine arts commission. “Putting It Together” has a mixed media theme involving “artists working with multiple imagery,” he explains.
The East Penn Board of School Directors learned about proposed revisions to the way the district teaches kindergarten through grade 12 science at the April 23 meeting.
The panel of educators proposing updating the curriculum included Elementary Curriculum Supervisor Michele James, Secondary Curriculum Supervisor Laura Witman and teachers Mike Mauro, from Wescosville Elementary, Heather Slatoff, from Lower Macungie Middle School and Emmaus High School Department Chair Brent Ohl.
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.