January is School Board Appreciation Month. The board room at Pleasant Valley School District's administration office was filled with posters and banners from various classes throughout the district that expressed the students' and staff's appreciation for all the board of directors do for them.

Dr. Douglas Arnold, PVSD superintendent, addressed the board and those in attendance, saying that the board gets paid nothing for a not so easy a task of setting a budget, policies and procedures but fortunate that the district has nine dedicated folks to do just that.

"Their actions directly affect our children, are advocates of our schools and give of their time," said.

He thanked them on behalf of the administration and staff. He asked for the School Director Recognition Month, January 2010 resolution be approved. It was unanimously.

"We're fortunate to have the board we have" he said.

PVE principal, Ms. Penny Derr, introduced a Podcast from the PVE students of a Special Report on "What is a School Board?" Students with microphones stopped PVE students to ask them what was a school board and answers ranged from "something you saw" to "I don't know."

The teachers throughout the district spent classroom time going over what a school board is, what it does and how it affects them as students, their parents and their schools.

PVE fourth grade teacher, Mrs. Judy Hartzler's class then used a handprint labeling each finger with tasks the school board does and wrote letters of thanks to the board members listing things like thankful for the white board, lap tops, hiring of great teachers and principals to the "awesome" science programs. Ms. Derr presented these to the board.

Mr. Joseph Kondisko, principal of Chestnuthill and Eldred elementary schools also delivered thank you cards from his students.

Ms. Amy Braxmeier pointed out the posters Polk Elementary students and staff made, already hanging in the room and told the board to enjoy the cookies made for them.

Mr. James Storm, principal of PVI thanked the board for their support of Denim Days, where staff and students pay for the privilege of wearing denim on specific days. Money and items collected were given to the local organization of Operation: Touch of Home, which sends care packages to local service men and women serving over seas.

A Power Point presentation was given of letters and pictures the school received thanking them for the packages and how much they meant to them.

"So thank you, Pleasant Valley School Board, for your continued commitment in support of PVI and our troops overseas and the community," said Mr. Storm.

He then introduced Dean Green, co-founder with his wife, Debbie, of Operation: Touch of Home. Green said that to date, they have shipped out 90,000 pounds of items of toiletries, snacks, books, etc. to 525 local men and women serving overseas. In addition to those every day items, they have sent Christmas trees and decorations, phone cards and coffee cards and supplied transportation home for 35 local military men and women.

"We even worked with a commandant of a new dining facility in Bagdad, purchasing state flags from all 50 states to be displayed in the facility," said Green.

Mr. Howard Drake of PVMS thanked the board for all they do and their support and presented each member with a snowglobe candle the student council members made for them.

Mr. John Gress from PVHS presented each member of the board with cards of thanks and appreciation from the students and staff.

Board president, Susan Kresge, thanked everyone for the presentation and asked the administrators to go back and thank the students and staff for their show of appreciation.

Board director Tom Murphy said that the board can do what it does "because of you," indicating the PV staff. "You guys implement it. It's a symbiotic relationship. You deserve an equal amount of thanks. You do a great job."

Kresge also thanked Chris Fisher, assistant to the superintendent for professional and support services, and all the volunteers for their help in making the H1N1 vaccine clinic held at the school a success.

The board approved the hiring of support staff: Peter Soroka from casual to part-time security officer; Debra Munoz, monitor at hourly rate of $8.40 at PVMS; Kurt Anderson, substitute custodian; Kelly Lynch, substitute secretary; Maddalena Schipani, substitute PPA.

The board approved tenure for teacher Denise Lenox.

The board approved the hiring of the following professional staff: Brittany Ardary, substitute Special Education teacher; Matthew Frable, substitute social studies teacher; Sara Shepherd, substitute elementary teacher.

The board granted leaves of absence to: Angela Chandler, PVI teacher for Child Bearing/Child Rearing Leave; Angela Janaro, teacher, Family and Medical Leave; Judy Kresge, Eldred custodian, Family/Medical Leave; Denise Linkhorst, PVE teacher, Family/Medical Leave; Ross Partington, PVHS teacher, Family/Medical Leave extension.

The board approved the resignation from Elizabeth Balser, a Polk PAA, effective Jan. 19, 2010 and wishes to remain on the substitute PPA list.

The board accepted a letter of retirement from Kenneth Kresge, maintenance worker, effective April 2, 2010.

Approval was granted for the Seed of Faith Ministries to use district facilities for ministry services from March 1, 2010 through Feb. 28, 2011.

The board accepted the resignation of Ms. Nicole Anderson as Assistant Girls' Varsity Soccer Coach effective immediately.

Mr. Michael Borger was accepted as 2009-2010 athletic volunteer position/baseball.

Mr. Gress, PVHS principal, was proud to announce that Angela Goldberg won the Poetry Out Loud competition and will go on to compete at the regional level and that Mr. Young and members of the Scholastic Scrimmage Team won the MVC championship and student Jordan Toledo beat the school record of 110 wrestling wins.