The Greenfield’s Board of Education welcomed attendees to its meeting Monday in the nearly finished new gym lobby, which is lighter, brighter, larger and more accommodating.
Gone is the purple carpet and purple walls. Gone, too, are the outdated restrooms, now completely updated to accommodate anyone needing them. There is a concession space, rather than the closet concessions were sold from for years. Also gone are the cramped, outdated locker-rooms.
The project is very near completion, athletic director Tim Bolender said during his update to the board. There are only a final few things that need doing, like waiting on the arrival of the lockers for placement in the expanded locker spaces on the second floor. They are supposed to come in next month, Bolender said. It’s things like having limited availability that have been a big factor in what has made the project run months past its original completion date.
Even so, the moving in has already begun, Bolender said, noting that the trophy cases are back in the lobby, and a lot of the trophies have been returned to the space. Bolender said the whole project is a huge improvement for McClain, and one that reaches beyond athletics.
While the additional locker-room space is beneficial on event nights, it also benefits the drama department for its rehearsals and performances, there is much-needed added storage, and the additional office space frees up other space for different pursuits like allowing computer technology teacher Nate Luke the room to expand technology opportunities for students.
In her report, superintendent Quincey Gray thanked Bolender and assistant athletic director Tracey Cokonougher for their patience in working around the construction and their work to help get everything put in order as the whole project comes to a close.
In another part of Bolender’s update, he recapped the accomplishments in winter sports of student athletes, who were recognized at last month’s school board meeting. The only ones physically missing from that meeting were district qualifying wrestlers Josh Breakfield, Ethan Hill, John Tomko and Rocky Jeffers, who all made it to Monday’s meeting and received their official recognition from the school board.
Bolender also briefly discussed spring sports and how things are officially getting kicked off with first games just around the corner for baseball and softball, and the first meet for track and field next week.
He said the sports calendar on the district’s website is constantly updated, so that’s the place to go to stay informed about any changes in the sports schedule.
Board members also heard from McClain robotics team, The Pink Ladies, the only all-female robotics team to compete in a 50-team field recently at the Harrison Competition. They competed there with their robot, Dot, which they designed, built and programmed themselves. They walked away from the competition with the Judge’s Award, which is bestowed on the team that demonstrates excellent interview skills, notebooking skills, teamwork, and robot design competency.
On Monday, The Pink Ladies – Emalee Montgomery, Emily Hester, Vivian Dennis and Diamond Justice – explained their different roles on the team and how they have grown through the year because of the experience. They told board members about being an all-girl robotics team and participating in something in which females are underrepresented. Because of this, they really wanted to play on their “girl power,” so Dot was pink and stylized in the way of all things feminine.
While the girls said their robot may not have always been the biggest or the best performer, she was always the prettiest.
In other matters, Gray mentioned the upcoming high school production of “Mama Mia!” with performances on April 23 and April 24. Also coming up is MHS Day on May 13, the day every year where high school students and staff perform services to the community across town. She said they are still looking for some projects for the day, so if anyone has an idea for a project that students could help with, call the high school office at 937-981-7731.
Board members also approved items on the consent agenda, which included the school calendar for the 2022-23 school year as well as next school year’s handbooks. The resignation of Troilee Lyle for the purposes of retirement was accepted, as well as the resignation of high school secretary Carrie Payton. The consent agenda also included the approval of mowing contracts for Buckskin Elementary and Rainsboro Elementary.
Recommendations for employment approved were: Brad Calhoun, cook; Taylor Smithson, aide/monitor; and Derrick Lyons, high school English teacher. Keith Penwell was approved as the new varsity football coach.
The Greenfield School Board will meet in regular session next on April 25 at 7 p.m. at Buckskin Elementary.
Angela Shepherd is a correspondent for the Greenfield Exempted Village School District.