West Branch BOE approves rental space | News, Sports, Jobs

BELOIT — The West Branch School Board has secured a commitment from at least one child care provider to use the Knox Elementary School building starting this fall.

The board this week approved an agreement with Small Wonders Daycare & Learning Center LLC to lease space and operate a daycare in the building from September 2022 through July 31, 2023. The daycare is currently accepting applications.

The district will also move its preschool into the building and expand it by one classroom for the fall.

The district closed the building in the fall of 2020 due to a drop in student enrollment as part of a district restructuring resulting in the Damascus Early Learning Center for preschool through second, middle school in the old Beloit middle school for third years through seventh and in high school from eighth through 12th years. The Knox Elementary building had since been used for storage.

In previous meetings, Egli noted that the building, which was built for nearly $6.8 million, with $1.35 million covered locally, has not received a full appraisal because it can never receive for sale the amount it is worth since no one will need it in the same way as a school district.

In April, Egli announced that Mac Trailer, owned by Knox Township resident Mike Conny, was helping with the operating expenses of the Knox Elementary building while the West Branch administration developed plans for the building.

Egli also said the district is considering a community center in the building, with the use of the gym and the creation of cardio and weight rooms, as well as pickleball and shuffleboard courts.

In other matters, the board approved a two-year contract with Aultman Hospital for athletic trainer coverage from August 1, 2022 through July 31, 2024. Aultman will provide a maximum of 500 hours; any overtime must be agreed between Aultman and the school board and be paid at $40 per hour, not to exceed 800 hours for the 2022-2023 school year. The cost will be paid from the Student Success and Wellness Fund.

The board also approved agreements for the 2022-2023 school year with the Center for Autism Intervention and Advocacy Spectrum Education Center; Jill Klettlinger, teacher for the visually impaired; Education Alternatives to provide services to special education students; and VAZA Consulting for financial advocacy and consulting, as well as renewing its contract with Board Docs (online service) through the Ohio Schools Council for fiscal year 2023 at a cost of $9,600.

Additionally, the board accepted donations of $2,604.69 from MAC Trailer for Knox Elementary operations, $3,182.62 anonymously for Knox Elementary operations, $1,000 from BOC Water Hydraulics for Project Lead the Way and $250 from Fairway Independent Mortgage Corp. for Project Lead the Way. .

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