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The Frankenmuth School District Board of Education reorganized last month for the 2018 year.
The board organization kept the members in their same positions. Brandon Muller remains the board president, Kevin Maurer is the vice-president, Dan Wortman is the secretary and Karen Uebler is the treasurer. Penny Malicoat remains charged with posting notices for all meetings.
The FSD depositories for the coming year include PNC Bank, Frankenmuth Credit Union, Horizon, Chemical Bank & Trust, JP Morgan, Chase Bank, Huntington National Bank and Michigan Liquid Asset Fund.
At the last board meeting February 12, the board took time to celebrate 50 years of the Frankenmuth Teachers Professional Organization.
“We noticed that it turned 50 when it was in the ‘Looking Back’ section of the Frankenmuth News,” FSD Superintendent Adele Martin. “I discussed it with FTPO President Tom Keller and being there isn’t a FTPO historian, we decided to mark the occasion.”
The FTPO is the teacher’s union for the district.
“The relationship between the school board and FTPO is very unique and there is none other like this in the state of Michigan,” Martin stated.
The resolution reads “The FTPO maintains principles that demonstrate a dedication to students, professionalism in the classroom, and willingness to work collaboratively with the Frankenmuth Board of Education. Our teachers create a positive learning and work environment, maintaining high standards and building relationships that support our district vision of 𠆊 Place for All’ and ‘High Academic Achievement for Every Learner.’ Our excellent educational programs are the result of your visionary leadership and willingness to collaborate for the betterment of the entire district and its stakeholders.”
The board also discusses the sinking fund summer projects for 2018. The board is still going over its building and site funds, but plans to upgrade and repair various parking lots. They are also looking to pave the gravel road that leads back to the baseball and softball fields on the far east end of the district’s property.
Parking lot work would begin when school ends in June and be complete in August.
Enrollment in the district has remained steady, thanks to Schools of Choice options. A total of 77 have been recently accepted, however, most may choose to locate elsewhere.
Martin said many of the parents of children who want to attend school here would love to move into the district, instead of opting for Schools of Choice. However, finding a home in-district has been a struggle.
The final Count Day for the 2017-18 school year is today (February 14). Currently, the unofficial enrollment in the FSD is 547 in the high school, 383 in List Elementary School and 340 at E.F. Rittmueller Middle School to an overall number of 1,270 students.
“Schools of Choice has been good, keeping us steady, helping with the budget and maintaining the programs as we know them. It’s a big deal; it’s good for the community, knowing that people want to be here,” Martin pointed out.
Turning the athletics, the Tri-Valley Conference league meeting was held recently and discussion was how to better work together in terms of future scheduling.
The TVC East has taken a hit lately. The East has lost Vassar a few years ago, Otisville-LakeVille last year and is set to lose Caro and North Branch at the end of this school year.
Carrollton is shifting to the East next year, joining ‘Muth, Birch Run, Bridgeport, Essexville Garber and Millington.
The TVC Central is also down to six schools. Ovid-Elsie and Chesaning are leaving the league, and Merrill and Breckenridge have been gone longer. The Central next year will have Alma, Bullock Creek, Freeland, Shepherd, Standish-Sterling and Swan Valley.
FHS Athletic Director Kevin Schwedler said the East and Central are looking to play each other in more crossover games.
“It’s a way to fill the schedule. We are all under the TVC umbrella and its best to utilize each other,” Schwedler said.
With six schools, that forces ADs to look schools sometimes far away, making it geographically tough.
The TVC West has a full, eight-school roster. Nouvel Catholic Central is joining the West and will compete with Hemlock, Ithaca, Michigan Lutheran Seminary, Pinconning, St. Charles, St. Louis and Valley Lutheran.
If approved, the crossover games would not necessarily pit the top team in each league against each other, as they do now.
“The superintendents want us to unify,” Schwedler said.
The TVC is also considering playing the girls’ and boys’ varsity games on Friday evenings. Currently, they are split, with freshmen, junior varsity and varsity all playing on one night.
Frankenmuth is a founding member of the TVC, leaving the Thumb B Association in 1978 and joining the new league in 1979. Carrollton, Garber, Hemlock, Swan Valley, Bullock Creek, Birch Run and Millington were the charter members. In 1989, the TVC East was formed, with Garber, Swan Valley, Birch Run and Hemlock joining Frankenmuth.