BY CAROL HICKS
Hoopeston Area High School senior government students presented two problem areas to the school board Thursday as part of Project Citizenship. They plan to aid in solving the problems.
The issue of bullying was the first item. Statistics show, according to the students, that Illinois ranks third in the nation for bullying. Of the students surveyed, 98 percent believe bullying is a problem in the district and influences 90 percent of its victims for their entire lifetime.
The students thought higher consequences and more awareness in the school system with staff members trained to handle the situations of bullying would help. Policies and consequences regarding bullying should be in the high school handbook was another suggestion. It was noted that a bullying policy is in the high school handbook.
The second presentation was on drug use and abuse. These students also did a survey and 86 percent said there was a problem in the district regarding drug with methamphetamines being the biggest problem. The ease with which people can obtain ingredients to make meth also was a huge factor in the problem.
The solution, according to the students, was to make over-the-counter drugs such as sudafamines a prescription based item, add more DARE programs to the whole school system from kindergarten through high school and harsher prosecution penalties.
In other school board business:
School board members voted unanimously to approve the revised school district calendar, the employment of Russell Leign & Associates for the 2013 audit at a cost not to exceed $6,000 and to set a special board meeting for 6:30 p.m. May 2 at the district office conference room to canvass the election results, reorganize the board and to convene a collective bargaining study session.
Board members also approved the resignations of Kevin Root as the freshman boys’ basketball coach and Dulsey Young as the fifth-grade girls’ basketball coach; accepted the intent to retire from Honeywell principal Linda Sheppard at the end of the 2014-2015 school year; and the employment of Janet Elliott as personal aide at Maple for the remainder of the 2012-2013 school year.
Learned the high school summer school program was being looked into to see what the needs were and would be presented in May.
Learned Michelle Seat was one of two Illinois students chosen by the Illinois State Board of Education to attend a month-long science summer camp in West Virginia and that she was accepted into the chemical engineering program at the University of Illinois.
Learned the Fine Arts Program would begin at 6 p.m. May 9.
Learned 60 kindergarten students were screened at Maple Grade School to begin the 2013-2014 school year.
Learned on-going talks were being conducted with Milford for a possible athletic co-op.
Learned Grandparents Day for Honeywell and Maple Grade Schools will be Tuesday.
Hoopeston Area School Board members school board meeting will begin at 6:30 p.m. May 16, 6:30 p.m. in the Hoopeston Area High library.