Refinancing to yield extra savings

Published 7:59 pm Tuesday, February 14, 2006

By By ANDY HAMILTON / Niles Daily Star
NILES - Brandywine Community Schools is on track to save a large chunk of money in the next couple of decades, the board of education announced Monday night at the Bell Education Center. An update to the board read that by refinancing its bond, the district should save around $770,000 over the next 22 years. The board said it had originally estimated to save only $670,000 by refinancing.
In the superintendent's report, Gary Rider announced the schools were receiving a technology grant and a donation for a trip. The computers instructor at Brandywine Elementary, Char Everett, said the school accepted a sum of $2,500 from Best Buy. The money will go toward purchasing new equipment such as digital cameras. The fourth, fifth and sixth graders are working on research projects, power-point presentations and movies, Everett said.
Eight Brandywine students planning to head to England also received a donation. Federal-Mogul of South Bend, Ind. donated $500 to the group to spend as they please on their 10-day trip at the beginning of April.
Members of the Brandywine women's tennis team were acknowledged for their performance on the court as well for earning 3.25 grade point averages or higher in the classroom.
Rider also thanked the principals of the Brandywine school buildings in recognition of Principal's Week.
The board also approved the hiring of two new instructors for Brandywine's Alternative and Adult Education program. Linda Ditto, who said she has been a substitute teacher throughout the district and Phil King, a recent graduate of Western Michigan University, were both approved by the board.
Another plus for the district, Rider added, was the recent enrollment numbers that have increased since the beginning of the school year.
The board also considered a request from the softball team for an overnight trip in the spring. The team hopes to leave for the Clinton Invitational on Friday, May 19 and the board will make a final decision on the request once they receive an itinerary for the trip.
In a closed session, the board voted 7-0 to approve agreements with Service Employees International Union (SEIU) local 517M to increase salaries by 2.15 percent beginning Jan. 23, and extending through June 30, 2006. Within SEIU there are 12 paraprofessionals, three maintenance workers,15 bus drivers and 16 food service workers.