Warren BOE changes schools start times

VINCENT – The Warren Local Board of Education on Monday unanimously approved changes in the start times for the district’s elementary schools to accommodate the return of high school busing this fall.

When busing to the high school was eliminated two years ago in a series of cost-cutting moves, the start times for Warren and Little Hocking elementaries were pushed back and the opening time for Barlow-Vincent Elementary moved up to account for increased traffic at the high school, which shares a campus with B-V.

The board voted at last month’s meeting to reinstate the service because of changes in school funding and larger-than-anticipated losses of students.

Barlow-Vincent’s schedule will now be 7:50 a.m. to 2:20 p.m., while Little Hocking and Warren will become 9:05 a.m. to 3:35 p.m. The high school schedule will remain the same, 7:58 a.m. to 3:04 p.m.

Superintendent Tom Gibbs said leaving the elementary start times unchanged would have been problematic.

“We would have to have the high school start later, which means they would end later, which would cause some pretty significant concerns with after-school activities,” he said.

In other business:

* The board scheduled a trio of special meetings for the coming weeks.

The first, at 5 p.m. Wednesday, will consist primarily of a closed, executive session in which the board plans to continue discussion of its superintendent search.

The board posted the job prior to Gibbs’ resignation, effective July 31, being submitted and narrowed the field of 18 respondents to three, who met with community members and employees on June 8. With those groups and board members split on who they thought would be best, the board decided to reject all three candidates.

Board President Sidney Brackenridge said all options – including seeking more applicants, revisiting the field or enlisting an interim superintendent – remain on the table.

Meanwhile, the district is moving forward with the hiring of principals and assistant principals at Warren High School and Barlow-Vincent, and potentially an athletic director. Principal and athletic director interviews are planned for next week, with hirings expected to be voted on in a special meeting at 5 p.m. July 1.

Gibbs said the plan is then to have the principals participate in the assistant principal interviews, with hirings for those jobs to be approved in a 5 p.m. July 8 meeting.