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Palos District 118 could scrap referendum on bond issue

Palos School District 118 will reconsider its $6.5 million working cash fund borrowing at the next school board meeting in August.

The school board traditionally skips a board meeting in July.

Palos Park resident John T. Donovan last December filed 2,100 signatures of district residents to force Palos Park’s plan to sell bonds to raise $6.5 million onto the November presidential election ballot as a referendum question.

The school board has until that meeting scheduled for Tuesday, Aug. 9, to move forward with placing the question on that ballot or nullify the bond issue. Technically, the school board can legally vote to cancel its planned bond issue at that meeting and later vote again, after a 60 day waiting period, to pursue the issuance of working cash bonds through the process of legal notice and a public hearing.

Also at the board’s meeting last week, Scarsella reported that although the enrollment numbers are steady in the district with an anticipated 106 students in the first grade and 100 in the second, it is possible that “one second grade teacher at Palos East Elementary may be moved to first grade to reduce class size in the coming 2016-2017 school year.”

That decision will be explored further at the next school board meeting on August 9.

Justin Veihman, Chief School Board Official for School District 118, was also named school treasurer for the fiscal year 2016-17, an appointment which the school board is required to re-install every year.

First on a long list of approvals from the board was an intergovernmental agreement with Chicago Ridge School District 127.5 Superintendent Dr. Kevin Russell to participate in a cost saving agreement for bilingual coordination services for the coming school year.

Also approved was a bid to provide diesel fuel for the 2016-17 fiscal year of 13 cents plus taxes to Avalon Petroleum Company and an approval of a bid by Veritiv to supply paper to the district for $27,875 for the same fiscal year.

Additionally, the board approved a contract for lighting and energy conservation with Trane Building Advantage in the amount of $205,371.

Aramark Food Services also received a one year extension of their 2015-16 contract with the district.

Certified staff being called back into employment within the district include: Mary Green, East; Brittany Kawa, East; Holly Nighosian, West; Nahaheel Shehadeh, East, for the 2016-17 school year.

Recommended for employment by the School Board include: Yusra (Sarah) Said, Bilingual Coordinator for the District and Paula Lynch, Instructional Resource Staff, West, effective for the 2016-17 school year.

Support staff being called back for employment include: Kathy Eichenlaub, OT Assistant, Joanna Nebel, Paraprofessional, West; Joan Vaisman, Paraprofessional, West; Amy Paladin, Paraprofessional, South; and Aneta Bednarz, Paraprofessional, South, all effective August 17, 2016.

Noted resignations include Caitlin Nugent, Operations, West, effective June 3, 2016 and the retirement of Gayle Worthington, playground aide at East, effective August 1, 2016.

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