With a stay at home order set to begin at 11:59 p.m. Monday, and the coronavirus spreading, the Greenfield Exempted Village Schools Board of Education held a sort of virtual meeting via a YouTube link for its regular session Monday evening.
Board members, the district treasurer, and the superintendent spread out across the central office boardroom keeping a safe distance from one another, a camera set up to capture the meeting for the public picking up only three of them.
Board member Eric Wise’s report on the legislature regarding educational matters was short. He said it is all at a standstill at present.
Treasurer Joe Pat Smith’s report mentioned how all that is currently not known, given the present situation, will affect what things look like with the state once normal life resumes.
Initially, Monday’s meeting was to include the recognition of winter sports athletes and the playground volunteers and sponsors. As that wasn’t possible, Superintendent Quincey Gray, in the spirit of positivity and optimism, said they will plan to make those recognitions at April’s board meeting.
Gray’s report to the board went on to highlight the positive. She thanked district staff, community members, and families that have worked together this last strange week to get learning packets for students created and distributed, food packs together and distributed, and everything else that had to happen to keep students learning and fed.
Students’ educational packets were distributed from the Greenfield Area Christian Center, New Directions, Rainsboro Methodist Church, Greenfield Church of Christ, and South Salem Methodist Church.
Food distribution has taken place at Rainsboro Elementary, Joey’s Pizza, Grain and Hay, Buckskin Elementary, Community Action parking lot (old Pamida building), Mitchell Park, and Greenfield’s First Presbyterian Church. While Joey’s Pizza and Grain and Hay were part of the initial food distribution, future food distribution will only take place at the other five locations.
The First Presbyterian Church is also putting together blessing bags that contain food for the weekend and are distributed on Fridays along with the school’s food distribution. Anyone wanting to donate to the church’s blessing bags effort can do so by mailing a donation to the First Presbyterian Church, in care of Mike Anderson, 457 Jefferson St. Anderson said it’s about $5 to sponsor a bag. He said last week there were more than 500 bags passed out, and this week more than 600 are slated for distribution. Checks should be made payable to the First Presbyterian Church with “blessing bags” written in the subject line.
“Everyone has pulled together,” Gray said, to make it all happen, and “it has been incredible to watch. It has just been nice to see these positives come out of the negative.”
Board President Charley Roman also expressed the board’s appreciation for how the school staff and the community have come together to make sure the students are taken care of while the school is closed.
Unless mandated otherwise, the Greenfield Board of Education is scheduled to meet next in regular session at 7 p.m. Monday, April 27 at Buckskin Elementary. For news and updates, visit greenfield.k12.oh.us or the district’s Facebook page. Individual buildings also have their own Facebook pages.
Angela Shepherd is a correspondent for the Greenfield Exempted Village Schools.