Orpneck re-elected president of Oxford School Board
● By Steven Hoffman
The Oxford School Board held its reorganization meeting on Tuesday, Dec. 6, and Richard Orpneck was selected to serve as president for 2017.
Orpneck, a retired chemist who lives in Elk Township, is entering his fourth year on the school board. This will be the second year that he has served as board president.
Board member Joseph Tighe nominated Orpneck for the leadership position. It was the only nomination for the position.
Next, board member Mark Patterson was selected to serve as the vice president of the board for 2017.
The school board members for 2017 are Lorraine Bell, Stephen Gaspar, Orpneck, Robert Tenga, Patterson, Rebecca Fetterolf, Gary Olson, Howard Robinson, and Tighe.
Orpneck talked about a number of tasks that the school board will be tackling in 2017.
“We’re starting early-bird negotiations with the custodial staff, and we hope to get that done [soon],” Orpneck explained.
He added that the school district is working on the budget for the 2017-18 school year, and the school board is committed to delivering the best possible education while being mindful of expenses.
“The budget will always be a challenge for us,” Orpneck said.
He added that the school district is also continuing the curriculum review cycle, focusing currently on social studies. Orpneck lauded the work of superintendent David Woods and assistant superintendent Dr. Margaret Billings-Jones.
“We have a good administrative team,” Orpneck said. “The school board works well with the administration. We have a great school board, and I think we all work very well together.”
Also at the reorganization meeting, the board set the schedule for public meetings for the next twelve months. The work sessions will take place on the second Tuesday of each month, while the regular meetings will take place on the third Tuesday of each month. The meetings take place at 7 p.m. at the Administration Building at 125 Bell Tower Lane in Oxford.
Patterson raised the possibility of moving the meetings to a different night because of conflicts with other municipal meetings in the area, but there were conflicts and scheduling issues with the other nights so the school board ultimately decided to continue holding meetings on Tuesdays.
In another piece of business addressed at the reorganization meeting, Bell, Olson, and Patterson were all appointed to the district's Policy Review Committee.
The Oxford School Board will meet next on Tuesday, Jan. 10, 2017.