Administrative Reports



Southern Fulton School District Work Session


Tuesday, October 17, 2006



    District Report


School Safety


The recent tragic events at schools has heightened safety awareness in schools across the country. In addition to the requests for additional cameras and locks, the administration is surveying staff members and asking for their input regarding school safety. In the next coming months the administration may ask for Board approval and support for additional safety measures; e.g., identification badges.


Act 1 Conferences/Meetings


Mrs. LuAnne Keebaugh, Mrs. Lori Bard, Mr. Gilliland, and Mr. Scott attended a PSBA evening conference in which a representative from PSBA reviewed the budgeting process implications of Act 1. Mr. Scott also attended a PASBO (Pennsylvania Association of School Business Officials) sponsored seminar about budgeting under Act 1.


The Tax Study Commission met on October 3 in the high school library at 7:00 p.m. Mr. Robert Swadley was elected chairperson. Mr. Walker Thompson was elected to the commission due to a resignation. He had previously been approved by the board as an alternate. The commission’s next meeting is October 26 at 7:00 in the Central Fulton Middle/High School cafeteria.




Once each building has established its own committee, the district’s committee will be drawn from those members. Relatedly, Mrs. Fischer will be on each committee.


In-Service Day


Two elementary and nine high school teachers will participate in Blackboard training on October 20. The remainder of our faculty participated in other alternative activities approved by the administration as per the Collective Bargaining Agreement.




The required plans were submitted to PDE on time, thanks to Mr. Leisher and Mr. Hoffner. The Induction Plan has already been approved.  Proper formatting of any hard copies of the electronically filed document is extremely labor intensive and not worth the time to edit them at this point. Thus, any hard copies will have spacing, margin errors, etc. in the texts. Conference


A strong message from the conference was that in many instances the students are ahead of the adults in using technology in schools. The administration will be planning Act 80 days with a focus upon technology. In addition, we will ask students to participate in some of the training.


Veterans’ Day


The principals are currently coordinating activities for Veterans’ Day. It is this administration’s intent to salute in a more formal way those who have served our country.


Fulton County Planning Commission Meeting


Mrs. LuAnne Keebaugh and Mr. Scott will attend the next Fulton County planning commission meeting at McConnellsburg at 7:00 p.m. on October 25.


PSBA Conference


As approved by the Board in August, the superintendent attended the recent PSBA Leadership Conference in Hershey from October 10-13. Some of the conference topics were health care, legal updates, school climate, and mathematics instruction. While others were winning iPods, digital cameras, DVD players and the like, this superintendent won a Sunshine Law Handbook from PSBA.


Ministerium Meeting


Members of the local ministerium met with the administration on October 10. Mrs. Dickerhoff also presented the results from the most recent drug and alcohol student survey. School safety is an example of  the items discussed.


PSBA Fall Legislative Meeting


The fall PSBA legislative meeting will be held in Mt. Union on November 1, 2006 at 7:00 p.m.





High School Report


Student of the Month


The junior high student selected is Caleb Myers.  The senior high student is Kevin Truax.  Each will be presented a plaque and certificate at the October 17 meeting.




The play was a success.  The 35 member cast received standing ovations both nights.  The auditorium was packed both nights.  There are 526 seats in the house and all but 20 were sold on Saturday and less on Friday.  I thanked the cast, crew and any person involved.  Mrs. Mottern and Mr. Sholes should be proud.  They did a great job.


Teacher of the Year Forum


Dan Meredith attended the Teacher of the Year forum on Monday, October 9 and Tuesday, October 10, at the Harrisburg Hilton. The conference theme, "Bridge to Excellence: Business and Education," was designed to celebrate and encourage innovative partnerships between public education and the business community.


I thought you would like to know that Southern Fulton figured prominently in this year's event. HB Mellott CEO and Chairman Paul Mellott was the keynote speaker. Business people, teachers, administrators, school board members, college professors and college students from across the state heard Mr. Mellott describe the various programs he has sponsored here at SF.  Mr. Mellott's efforts in our district will inspire similar partnerships to form across the state.




PSAT will be given on Wednesday, October 18. We will have 50 students taking the test.


Parent/Teacher Conferences


The High School is currently working on preparations for the Parent/Teacher Conference Day on Thursday, November 9.  Information on how to schedule the conferences will be sent home to parents next week.


PSSA Practice


We have begun the “word and math problem of the week” at the high school.  Each Monday the teachers are given a PSSA word and math problem.  The teachers can use that as extra-credit on a homework, quiz or test.  The students are also working on a Study Island computer program to assist in raising scores.


12th Grade PSSA Retakes


The retakes for math, reading and writing for 12th graders will be on October 26, 30 and 31.


One on One club


As of today, there are two student volunteers, four faculty members, and five community members tutoring twenty-one of our students.  The faculty/staff members are Miss Angela Adams, Mrs. Cindy Layton, Mrs. Patty Keefer and Mrs. Kay Meredith.  The community members are Ms. Carol Richards, Mrs. Ellie Merrica, Mr. David Horst, Ms. Shelia Keebaugh, and Mr. Aaron Meredith. 


October 20th In-Service Day


The staff will receive training in blackboard, an online tool that will aid in lesson planning and communication in the school.


End of 1st Marking Period


The 45th day is November 1.  Report cards will go out on November 7.


Use of Buildings and Grounds


The votech will use the facilities for the Occupational Advisory dinner/meeting on November 2, 2006.  The times of usage will be from 6-8:00 p.m. for 50 people.  


The SATs will be given here on Saturday, November 4.


The SF Athletic Association will use the cafeteria on November 11, 2006 for the annual sportsman dinner raffle.


The geography club used the facilities for a basket bingo on October 8, 2006.




Student Forum has begun and Mr. Sholes will be taking a group of 10-12 grade students to the IU once a month for training on i-Safe the internet safety program. The students will then train the elementary and other high school students on internet safety.  They will also be part of a group going to Harrisburg to talk to legislators about the need for internet safety.


NJHS went to Niagra Falls on Oct 6-8.  Yes in the blizzard, but they had no problem nor trouble.  The report from the newspaper will read:


The Southern Fulton National Junior Honor Society visited Niagara Falls and Toronto.  Expecting a beautiful, scenic drive, the members relaxed and settled back into their bus seats.  However, “Mother Nature” had different plans for the trek.  As the members entered the Buffalo, New York area they were greeted with about two feet of wet snow and two closed interstates.  Arriving in Niagara Falls 10 hours later, the group was able to later enjoy a boat ride on the “Maiden of the Mist,” and an IMAX movie on the history of Niagara Falls.  On Saturday, the group traveled to Toronto and enjoyed a trip up the CN Tower and  a wonderful performance of the show “Wicked.”  Participants included:  Daniel Wolfe, Chelsey Hollenshead, Jenna Ritz, Dakota Ritz, Lacey Beatty, Mariah Hill, Bailey Elbin, Derek Younker, Lucas Mellott, Ashley Mellott, Kelsi Swope, Morgan Mills, Chelsie Eader, Kristin Miller, Alexandra Barnhart. 


The Lifeskills class went to the Clear Spring Pumpkin Patch on October 13, 2006.  The kids had a great time and appreciated the chance at going.  Miss Miller, the aides and the students wanted me to thank the board for this opportunity.




The High School Band will be participating in several parades over the next couple of weeks.  They are as follows:


October 15-4F Parade

October 21 – McConnellsburg 

October 24-Everett Parade-cancelled due to conflict with Volleyball game

October 25-Hancock Parade

October 28-Hagerstown Parade

October 30-Mercersburg Parade


National FFA Convention


Miss. Bickel will be taking nine students to Indianapolis from October 23 through October 27.  All busing and housing arrangements were made by Miss. Bickel,


Other Trips


FFA is also requesting to go to Chambersburg, Forrester Equipment on October 18, 2006.  There will be 2 chaperones and 35 kids.  This was budgeted and approved.


Mrs. Keebaugh has requested to take students to the Hiram G. Andrews Center in Johnstown, Pa., on October 19, 2006.  The votech is providing transportation.


Volleyball team is requesting to go to a clinic on November 4, 2006.  Mrs. Dickerhoff will take 4 chaperones and 30 students.  This has been approved and budgeted by the volleyball club.


Mrs. Solomon and the votech is requesting to take students in grades 11 and 12 to Allegany College of Maryland on November 16, 2006.  This trip will be paid for by the votech.




Elementary Report


PANA (Pennsylvania Advocates for Nutrition and

Activity) Committee


The elementary PANA Committee is ready to go, except that I need a board member to be a part of this committee as well.  Please call me as soon as possible, if you are interested. (294-3400)


Walk to/or at School Day was held on October 4, 2006.  Everyone at the elementary school participated in this.  Many classrooms took this opportunity to walk the nature trail.


Nature Trail


Herbert Brambley, Mike Shade, Lory Baker, Mr. Scott, Kendra Trail and Greg Reineke (Fulton County Conservation District) will be visiting Bedford Elementary School on Wednesday, Oct. 18, 2006, to view their nature trail.  We want to get ideas on how to expand the educational activities on our trail.


Lory Baker and Greg Reineke are currently writing a grant for $3,000.00.  Also, the above team will be writing a grant for $15,000.00 in hopes of working on a curriculum for the trail as well as possibly getting some materials.


PTA News


The first PTA fundraiser finished today, Oct. 17.  Also, Chuck E. Cheese will be visiting the elementary school at dismissal on November 2.  The PTA will make 10% profit from Southern Fulton Patrons that take their students to Chuck E. Cheese in Hagerstown on Nov. 2, from 3:00 – 9:00 p.m.


The next PTA meeting is scheduled for November 13.


Leadership Training


I will be attending four sessions through the Pennsylvania Inspired Leadership Initiative.  The first 2-day session takes place on November 7 and 8 in Altoona.  This is the first major initiative by the state to provide support in leadership for development for school administrators.  There is no fee to be involved in the program except for travel.  Legislation has been written to make the training mandatory, but nothing has been approved yet.


Fulton County Center for Families


I will be attending monthly meetings for the Fulton County Center for Families.  I am now a part of their board. 


Parent Luncheon


In honor of American Education Week, parents are invited to eat lunch with their child(ren) on Friday, November 17, 2006.  To cut down on instructional disruptions in the classroom, parents are invited to eat lunch on this day instead of visiting their child’s classroom.




Dorothy Brambley, Marjory Leese, and Kristi Whiteside will be attending a conference entitled, “Four Squares Writing” on October 26, 2006, in Hagerstown, MD.


Suzy Elbin will be attending a conference entitled, “Pattan Assistive Technology Expo 2006” on November 2, 2006, at the IU.


Kathy Cutchall will be attending a conference entitled, “What’s New in Children’s Literature and How to Use it in Your Program 2007” in Harrisburg, PA.


Diane Younker will be attending an IDEA Workshop on November 4, 2006, at the IU.


Lisa Truax and Michael Johnson will be attending a conference entitled, “Practical Strategies for Working with Students with Aspergers Syndrome and High Functioning Autism” on November 6, 2006, in Harrisburg, PA.


Michael Johnson will be attending a conference entitled, “27 Costly Mistakes that IEP and Section 504 Teams Continue to Make and What to do Instead” on November 13, 2006, in Harrisburg, PA.




Kudos to Carolyn Mottern for arranging the trip to the high school to see the play!!  The staff and students thoroughly enjoyed it.


Upcoming Events




23-27               Red Ribbon Week

 24                   Native American Day – 3rd grade

 27                   9:45 Robin Cole Assembly; Fall Party




1                                            End of first marking period

6                                            1:30 Veteran’s Assembly

9                                            12:00 – 8:00 Parent Teacher Conferences

10                                        Act 80 Day

17                                        Parent Luncheon

20                                        7:00 p.m. K-6 Math Night



Federal Programs Report


Nothing to report.




Facilities Manager Report




Concrete for the district office sidewalk was poured.


Two condenser fans and motors were replaced on the high school chiller system.


A walk through with the principals was done in the past few weeks addressing maintenance and cleaning issues for the high school and elementary.


A security camera was installed at the entrance of the district office.


Heidler Roofing is scheduled to replace the damaged insulation in the high school roof on Wednesday, October 18, weather permitting.


Several violations were found by the new boiler inspector during the last inspection for the high school. The inspections take place every two years and apparently the previous inspector “missed” the problem areas. These include an undersized relief valve that was installed on one of the boilers 3 to 4 years ago, a relief valve required on an expansion tank, and two valves that did not shut down upon testing.  These are to be replaced. Also,  the hot water tank/heat exchanger has gaskets that have to be replaced. These are not small repairs. I will have an HVAC company do the required repairs. 


A reminder:  Our maximum set price for heating oil is $2.39/gallon, which was budgeted.  We pay less if the cost is less.



Business Manager Report


Township Supervisor Convention


I attended the township supervisor convention. At the meeting a representative from the PSATS gave a presentation on new acts that are currently in Congress, and one is for the increase in minimum wage which will increase from $5.15 per hour to $6.25 per hour on January 1, 2007, and to $7.15 per hour on July 1, 2007. This affects all businesses with 10 or more employees and will impact our substitute rate, which currently is $6.70 for aides and cooks and $6.75 for custodians.


I also met with a representative from F & M Trust on how to maximize our earnings on any money currently in our accounts. She has come up with a proposal that I have given you. We would maximize any balances in our general fund account over $40,000.00 and it would be swept into a REPO sweep account (cash sweep) every day with the interest rate currently at 4.34%. This would offset any fees that the bank charges. We looked at all of our accounts and estimated the fees that we would have been charged last month, the actual interest that we earned for September, and the amount that we would have earned if we would have been in the cash sweep arrangement. As you can see, it would have been beneficial to have been enrolled in this program last month. We can have this started and review it in 3 months. All monies that the school district has invested at F&M Trust are collateralized with securities by the bank. We can get a list of those securities at any time.




Technology Specialist Report


eRate Status


Our form 471 for this year’s eRate reimbursement is still in the “Certified-in window” state.  This indicates it has not yet been assigned a reviewer.  My guesses for the delay is that 1) they have many requests to sift through and 2) they are waiting for the new technology plan to be approved.


Strategic Plan Status


Our Student Services Plan (Chapter 12) has been approved by PDE.


Computer / Network Security Seminar


On October 11, 2006 I attended a computer/network security seminar.  This session was very informative as to what hackers are currently doing.  I did some testing of our anti-virus/anti-spyware/anti-malware software and found that it blocked certain programs hackers are using.  However, that doesn’t mean it will block everything.  I sent an email to all district employees reminding them of the importance of not opening any email that is not legitimate and to only visit web sites that are school-related.


PATI Inventory


Every year, I’ve filled out a technology inventory for PDE.  This year they included a survey for all teachers to take.  I have provided the teachers with the necessary information to participate in this survey.  The results of the survey will help us and PDE target funding and training for the use of technology in our district.