As construction moves along on the Veterans Memorial Elementary School in Upper Macungie, Parkland School District officials are ordering equipment for the building which is expected to open in September 2020.
At the Oct. 15 meeting, the board approved purchase of classroom, office and cafeteria furniture for the school at a cost of $353,554 from Tanner Furniture, Harrisburg.
Audiovisual equipment for the gym, cafeteria and main conference room areas will be bought from Comm-Tech AV, Macungie, at a cost of $107,729.
St. John’s United Church of Christ, 1415 Rising Sun Road, Laurys Station, will host a walk-in basket social between 5-8 p.m. Nov. 1, and 9 a.m.-3 p.m. Nov. 2.
The drawing starts at 3:30 p.m. Saturday. Winners will be notified.
Plenty of food and refreshments will be available for purchase to eat in or take out. There will also be a bake sale.
For information, call 610-262-8061.
Union Lutheran Church, Schnecksville, invites the public to purchase baked goods beginning 7 a.m. Election Day, Nov. 5.
An ensemble of string players performed lovely music in the Parkland School District Administration Building as a large crowd of parents and educators viewed a display of art work created by students.
Following the art and music reception at the school board’s Oct. 22 meeting, Director of Visual and Performing Arts Mark Stutz announced the district has been recognized by the Pennsylvania Art Education Association as an Outstanding Visual Arts Community for 2019.
Parkland’s administration and school board are engaged in an ongoing challenge to provide sufficient classroom space for the hundreds of new children moving into the district.
Although the school population has remained stable in the northern portion of Parkland, new housing developments in the southern section continue to crop up on what had been farmland in the southern areas.
Four years ago the district conducted a major redistricting project which involved moving some students northward to provide space for new arrivals in the south.
Parkland School Board directors welcomed new teachers during a festive reception filled with great enthusiasm and optimism for the 2019-20 term.
Director of Human Resources Pam Kelly offered opening remarks.
“This evening is a very special tradition Parkland has,” Kelly said. “It doesn’t happen everywhere.”
She noted the hiring process seems to start earlier, and run later each year.
Kelly reported administrators started seeking new teachers at job fairs in February and hired the first one in April.
As Parkland School District administrators prepare for the opening of Veterans Memorial Elementary School in September 2020, they are drafting a redistricting plan for students in the southern portion of the district.
Changes will be made in boundaries for Jaindl, Fogelsville, Cetronia and Parkway Manor elementary schools.
At a recent meeting, Superintendent Richard Sniscak discussed the redistricting project.
“We have 600 to 650 each at Jaindl, Cetronia, Fogelsville and Parkway Manor — our top four enrollment schools,” Sniscak said. “All have portables (classrooms).
South Whitehall Township Manager Renee Bickel has reported Chris Kiskeravage was selected for a full-time position as fire commissioner.
At a recent meeting, Bickel said Kiskeravage will be paid from the fire tax which took effect on Jan. 1, 2018.
“He will be a liaison between the township and the fire companies,” Bickel said. “He will provide consistency and oversight.”
Kiskeravage, who will join the staff in November, will work out of the township building, and will report to Chief of Police Glen Dorney, Bickel explained.
Over the past two decades, developers in South Whitehall occasionally asked for sidewalk deferrals in areas which did not have them in the vicinity at that time.
The understanding was that when the township was ready for sidewalk connections, property owners would be asked to provide them.
The late Steve Seyer, who served on the board of commissioners and the planning commission, often questioned the idea of deferrals and predicted the matter might cause problems later on.
South Whitehall will be launching a capital campaign this fall to collect donations for updating the playground and restrooms at Covered Bridge Park.
Parks and Recreation Manager Mike Kukitz explained the need for the new equipment during the Sept. 18 township commissioners’ meeting.
“What we have is from the 1990s,” Kukitz said. “It is not up to snuff with what playgrounds can be nowadays.
“We need more challenging play equipment.”
He noted all kinds of new attractions such as zip lines, electronic items and balance apparatus are available.
After several hours of comments from Ridge Farm development representatives and the public, the South Whitehall planning commission voted to table the request from Kay Builders for conditional approval.
“We haven’t seen data about rush hour and other things we usually see in a traffic impact study,” Planner Bob Bielecki stated. “Conditional approval will have to wait until that’s done.”
Diane Kelly concurred.
“I’m not comfortable moving forward with this plan,” Kelly said. “We haven’t seen this before with the northern section separated.”