The Pleasant Valley School District received some very good news from Scott Shearer, financial adviser to the district from Public Financial Management, Inc. in regards to one of the district's bond issues at the Aug. 26 PVSD's school board meeting.

The 2006 General Obligation Bonds of $24,605,000 were refinanced and the district will save approximately one million dollars in debt services payments over a two-year period of time, said Susan Famularo, PVSD's business manager.

The bond was for the purpose of Pleasant Valley Middle School's renovation and addition and other smaller districtwide projects.

"We're very happy about this," said Dr. Douglas Arnold, PVSD's superintendent.

Ms. Carole Geary, assistant superintendent/curriculum, announced the PV teachers and administrators were honored by the Institute for Literacy and Learning with the 2010 Center of Influence Award, for successfully demonstrating positive outcomes for students in the elementary division. PV was commended for attaining remarkable literacy advancement for their students by planning, implementing and sustaining their literacy efforts. Geary accepted the award of $10,000 on behalf of the district at the Institute for Literacy and Learning Conference in Harrisburg this past June. She then presented the check to Susan Kresge, PVSD school board president.

"I'd like to thank all the staff and administrators involved in this on behalf of the school board," Kresge said.

Kresge, as a liaison for the Pennsylvania School Boards Association (PSBA) presented a video of PSBA Executive Director Thomas J. Gentzel discussing the 2010-11 state budget, and the governor's and legislature's efforts to close the funding hole caused by the lower-than-expected federal funding and about the Public School's Employees' Retirement System and how it affects the state budget. He concluded with "Next year's state budget will be even more difficult than this year."

Penny Derr, PVE principal and Director of Elementary Education, demonstrated how the new iPads are making elementary walk-through observations much more efficient and easier thanks to the Teachscape application.

"We can give more positive feedback to our teachers and I think we all agree that these iPads help us be more efficient," said Geary.

Dora Tartar, PVSD's reading supervisor and Jamie Schuler, fifth to seventh grade literacy coach, gave a presentation on the summer school reading/technology project.

Kelly Pauling IU20 curriculum director worked with PV this summer. She said reports show that reading drops off as students grow older, especially in boys. She wanted to see if technology would change that. In July, the summer school students read "Diary of a Wimpy Kid," picked especially with boys in mind.

Fifth and sixth grade students used tools like Kid blog, Glogster, Voicethread, Wordle in instruction. After the book was read, the students retold the story through the use of props they made, a green screen and camera, and made it into an 18-minute movie to show how they comprehended the book. The movie was played for the directors.

"We showed the movie to the other summer school students, serving them popcorn, and they loved it. It was a huge success," said Tartar.

She thanked Sue Geiger, classroom teacher, Michele Herrmann, paraprofessional associate, Monica Ohland, teacher, Danielle Kresge, teacher and Dr. Lee Lesisko, technology services coordinator for all their help on the project.

The Pleasant Valley Intermediate School received two back packs from Weichert Realtors, one for a boy and one for a girl, filled with school supplies. Mr. Storm, principal of PVI, said the school was very appreciative of this gift and the back packs will be given out at some future date as prizes.

Mr. Robert Hines, PVHS assistant principal and cyber school coordinator, said that 25 students graduated from Cyber School in June and there were 25 new students enrolled for the 2010-11 year.

The district has hired for the 2010-11 school year's Professional Staff:

*Administration: Erica Walters, Chestnuthill Elementary School Assistant Principal/grant writer, prorated annual salary adjustment to $64,663, effective Aug. 27, 2010.

*Loretta Bretzger, part-time level II, long-term substitute English teacher for Patricia McLain at $39,200; Maria Centini, first semester, long-term English teacher for Falona Walker at $39,200.

*Substitutes: Caitlin Gialouris, elementary.

The district has hired for 2010-11 school year's Support Staff:

*Part-time paraprofessional associates: Suzanne Bongiovanni, PVE (replacement position for Michele Herrmann; Gregory Duff, PVI, replacement for Vanessa Cole; Billye Kubiak, PVE, replacement for Barbara Hill; Jennifer Leiner, PVE, replacement for Paolina Lindner; Ethel Acevedo, PVE, replacement position; Andrea Yozwiak, PVI, replacement position.

*Substitute paraprofessional associates: Lynette Frantz, Billye Kubiak, Jennifer Leiner; Ashley Grennan; Andrea Yozwiak.

*Substitute custodian: Anna Hill.

*Transfers: Robert Krock, custodian from PVE to PVHS; Robert Siglin, custodian from PVHS to PVE; Catherine Giannakis from PVI to PVE.

The board accepted resignations effective Aug. 23, 2010:

David Biever, Polk part-time paraprofessional associate; Matthew Gould, PVE paraprofessional associate; Justin Micklos as monitor at PVMS but remain on substitute list for paraprofessional associate and monitor; Elizabeth Valentine, PVHS paraprofessional associate; Carla Howell, Polk part-time paraprofessional associate; Lynn Vento, PVHS temporary paraprofessional associate.

Letters of retirement were approved for: Robert Krock as high school custodian, effective Nov. 30, 2010; Richard Price, maintenance worker, effective Aug. 24, 2010.

Fall sports volunteer coaching positions were approved for: Keith Smith, freshman football; Robert Pini, junior high football; Eric Saldibar, junior high football; Nicole Gesiskie, volleyball.

The board approved:

*ASSET Incorporated, Writing to Learn Strategies for 35 participants, Aug. 25, 2010 at a cost of $4,900, paid for through a PA-Pact Grant

*Wausau Tile for four custom signs at 68" long by 26" tall by 4" thick precast concrete signs with wording to say "Pleasant Valley Intermediate" and PVSD will install them on Polk Twp. Road at a cost of $2,520.

There are 332 students enrolled in kindergarten this year, up by 45 from last year.

Chestnuthill Elementary will hold an Open House on Wednesday, Sept. 15 from 6-8 p.m.

All the district's building principals gave glowing thanks to the maintenance and building, secretarial staffs and Mr. Drake included Rocco Seiler as technology systems coordinator, for getting the district ready for the new school year.

School Board Director Tom Murphy welcomed Erica Walters as the new elementary assistant principal/early childhood coordinator and grant writer. He attended several of the schools' opening sessions and complimented everyone from administration, staff and maintenance departments for the great jobs they have done over the summer to prepare the district for the new school year.

"Thanks to Dr. Arnold for telling you what we want done and it gets done. Excellent job. I appreciate all you do and I thank you. Have a great year."

Director James Spinola also thanked everyone for a great job and said he had a chance to meet with Carole Geary, PVSD assistant superintendent/curriculum. "We're in good hands with her."

Susan Kresge, PVSD president agreed with both gentlemen's comments and added that "there seems like there's no loose ends" and Dr. Arnold said "We're ready to go."