School panel approves more hiring of teachers
The School Committee at its July 26 meeting approved the superintendent’s recommendations to hire four new teachers.
Chairwoman Cathy Kaiser, along with committee members Sav Rebecchi and B.J. Whitehouse, voted to approve the new hires. Committeewoman Sarah Baines arrived afterwards, while Julia Held was not present.
Glenn Scott has been hired as a part-time physical education teacher and will serve his time primarily at Lawn Avenue School, according to Superintendent Marcia Lukon. Scott had previously worked in North Kingstown at both the Hamilton and Stony Lane elementary schools.
Leslie Rounds has been hired as a new part-time English teacher. Originally the department decided on a .4 position, but that position was raised to a .8 level in order to meet the needs of students requiring services. Rounds has a master’s degree from Rhode Island College and a bachelor’s from the University of Rhode Island. She previously worked in the North Smithfield school system as an English-as-asecond language specialist and the English-language-learner coordinator, according to Dr. Lukon.
Amy Godek has been hired as the new preschool teacher. Godek has a master’s degree from Rhode Island College and a bachelor’s from Bridgewater State University. She previously worked as an early interventionist and specialeducation coordinator.
Beverly Rudman has been hired as a part-time primary reading teacher and will also do the reading recovery training. Rudman has already worked in the Jamestown school system, often serving as a long-term substitute. “We’re pleased to have her joining us on our staff for the coming year,” said Lukon.
Along with the new hirings, the School Committee voted unanimously to accept multiple bids for upgrades and maintenance on the school facilities recommended by the director of buildings and grounds, Lew Kitts.
Electronic Tech Security Company won the bid to install camera systems, which will cost $5,300 at Melrose Avenue School and $4,100 at Lawn Avenue School. The same company will handle the installation of card readers. Cost will be $6,300 at Melrose, $6,600 at Lawn.
Maintenance for the boiler will be handled by Lauder’s Energy Solutions, with a day rate of $75 per hour, plus tolls, with a onehour minimum. The night rate is $75 per hour, plus tolls, with a two-hour minimum.
Uncle’s Sound Systems will handle the installation of a Telecor clock system at Melrose Avenue for $13,575. It will cost $10,500 at Lawn Avenue. The bid was contingent on systems for both schools being purchased at the same time.
Lukon said that the bids had been reviewed and were all within budget.
Kitts said the bid process was frustrating and could be easier than it was. “Other than that,” he said, “it went the way it was supposed to. It was done the way it was supposed to be done.”
Rebecchi inquired about the reasons for the wide range in quotes on bids that were received.
“That sometimes does happen, and it happens quite often,” said Kitts, noting the difference be- tween costs can stem from the size of the company and which state it’s based out of. “It’s amazing, the spread you can get.”
“You’re confident we’re getting what we need to have?” asked Rebecchi.
“I’m very confident,” said Kitts. “The systems that we’re getting, I can add on if we decide we need more cameras or more card-swipe areas for doorways that need to be accessible by the staff. I can add on if I need to later on. I don’t have to buy a whole new system.”