Tipp BOE approves grant funds, new graduation date

TIPP CITY — The Tipp City School Board accepted grant funding from the Tipp City Foundation at Monday’s regular meeting.

“We’re excited by the amount, and we’re also excited by the variety of programs that they’ve agreed to fund,” Superintendent Mark Stefanik said.

The grant, which totals $9,887.61, will go toward various programs and resources in the district, such as:

• ADA accessible swings for playgrounds in the district totaling $2,571.85;

• Ohio Caverns programs for Broadway Elementary totaling $1,365;

• A garden learning space benefiting Broadway Elementary and totaling $1,931.76;

• The Tippecanoe Middle School Powering the Pen competition totaling $1,000;

• A sensory garden space at Tippecanoe High School totaling $230;

• An indoor percussion ensemble tarp for the Tippecanoe High School Music Program totaling $800;

• The Tippecanoe High School program Unite in Red, totaling $689; and

• Landscaping tools for creating an outdoor learning environment at Tippecanoe High School, totaling $1,300.

The school board also approved moving the Tippecanoe High School graduation date to Saturday, May 21, 2022. Graduation had originally been slated for Saturday, May 28, 2022, but the district had Hobart Arena reserved for the May 21 date.

Tippecanoe High School Principal Daniel Barnes sent a survey to parents of current seniors and gave three options: Keep the May 28 graduation date but lose the ability to have Hobart Arena, move graduation to the 21st and have the ability to keep Hobart Arena, or move it to the 29th and hope to reserve Hobart Arena. According to Barnes, parents overwhelmingly voted for moving graduation to the 21st and keeping Hobart Arena.

“A lot of them were very appreciative that I asked their opinion, and they understood that there are going to be choices that have to be made and we’re never going to get a 100% yay on them,” Barnes said.

According to Barnes, comments from parents consistently said that keeping Hobart Arena was the big push toward choosing the option to move graduation to the 21st. While limitations for attendance will be in place, they won’t be as strict as if the ceremony were to be held at the high school. Barnes added that with more parking available around Hobart’s facility, it should run more smoothly.

The board also approved the following at Monday’s meeting:

• A new budget and expenditure account for Business Professionals of America;

• The job description for the athletic coordinator position;

• The resignations of classified staff member Jennifer James and supplemental staff members Casey Beck, Cassie Johnson and Carmella Lammers;

• The hiring of substitutes Dean Childs, Melanie Woodworth, Alexa Vagedes, Mark Specht, Stephanie Johnson, Jason Carroll, Jessica Miano, Charles Sharpe, Brandon Staley and Kaitlyn Schwaiger;

• The hiring of supplemental staff members Sarah Ashburn, Danielle McDonagh and Kaitlyn Gustavson;

• The hiring of game workers Kaitlyn Gustavson, Amy Treon, Don Wildermuth and Jason Watercutter;

• An unpaid leave of absence for third grade teacher Katy Stout; and

• Changing resident mentor educator from Brenda Mahaney to Annette Malott.

The next regular board meeting will take place at 6 p.m. on Monday, Nov. 15.