"It's always a difficult decision to make," said Greg Gurka
In 2014, the North Royalton Schools
took calamity days on January 6, 7, 28 and 29, due to sub-zero temperatures.
This latest day called on February 18 was due to the volume of snow and the winds that created continual drifting.
"With the heavy snow, blowing and drifting, my guys just couldn't keep up," said Gurka
By 5:00 a.m. it was evident that the day needed to be called.
The district's school buses normally start at 6:30 a.m., so the decision needed to be made.
Although the city's snow removal were in full swing, the timing of the snow and the blowing and drifting made the focus to the main roads, said Gurka
"Our buses and students who drive don't just use the main roads, they also use the back roads and side streets," said Gurka
said that he
cannot remember when the district had to take all available calamity days.
If extra days are needed to be added to the school year, Gurka
said that there will be added cost to the district, but not in the form of personnel, as agreements with teachers and other staff members include the possibility of using those extra days.
The Ohio legislature has also considered the extraordinary winter, with several pieces of legislation being discussed that would allow for extra calamity days this year.
Some legislators thought that the extra days were excessive, so the legislation has now gone back to Committee, said Gurka
"When all the improvements from this bond issue are made, the district will ultimately save money in lower operating costs because the buildings will be more energy efficient as well," said School Superintendent, Greg Gurka.
The Board of Education voted 4-1 on both the Resolution of Necessity at a special meeting on January 15 and on a Resolution to Proceed at a second special meeting on January 22.
"Since the last time the district passed a bond issue in 1987, and then in 1994 to build a new middle school, the Board of Education and administration have made wise, fiscally-responsible decisions on prioritizing what facility issues need to be addressed with the monies available through the permanent improvement fund," said Gurka
"There is not enough money in the permanent improvement fund to make all the repairs necessary.
In fact, if we put every available penny we receive each year from the permanent improvement fund into what we want to accomplish in this bond issue, it would take 49 years to fix everything, assuming nothing else would break.
We also would not be able to purchase new buses, technology, or textbooks if we did that.
This is not possible with the aging of our buildings, and is the reason why the district has no choice but to go before voters once again to ask for this bond issue money."
said that tours of the buildings can be arranged for any resident that would like to view the condition of the buildings.
"If any resident has questions or doubts about the needs we are trying to address, I urge them to call me or any one of our principals to schedule a personal tour and meeting," said Gurka
The North Royalton Board of Education approved a new contract for Greg Gurka to serve as the district's School Superintendent, effective October 15, 2013 through July 31, 2017, at an initial salary of $120,000.
Gurka has been serving as interim Superintendent since July, replacing Ed Vittardi, who retired.
After failed attempts to secure the position, Gurka
offered to take the position on an interim basis, due to family obligations.
At that time, Zindroski cast an affirmative vote for Gurka
, saying that "consistency is a necessity" in the school community.
Anne Reinkober said that Gurka
"has made the transition wonderfully.
Heidi Dolezal noted that "it was Gurka
that had asked for the interim position.
explained that Gurka
, at that time, wasn't sure if he
could fulfill the position to its fullest, due to personal family responsibilities.
John Kelly stated that had Gurka
wanted the Superintendent position at that time, the Board would have accepted it.
noted that, "I think you will agree with me that Biagio's background and wealth of experience is quite impressive."
The existing science classrooms in North Royalton do not have the physical space/hood ventilation systems, or electrical capacity to support the labs," said North Royalton School Superintendent Greg Gurka.
The music wing will also get updated, allowing the entire high school band to practice together in the band room.
Rehearsal rooms and storage will also be included.
A new configuration and wider doors will provide easier access to the practice field.
Middle School: The plan shows the replacing the roof of the 17-year-old building and some general finishes, as well as an improved and secured entrance.
"We need to have more secure facilities with controlled access," said Gurka
"Broadview Heights city officials are in strong support for us to return students to their home schools," said Gurka
"In our community survey, overall 52% of voters said it would be better for the schools to add space onto each of the elementary schools so kindergarten students can go to school in their attendance area."
"The time is now for these improvements as well as moving the students at the ECC back to their home elementary schools.
Interest rates and construction costs are low.
If we continue to wait, it may end up costing all of us more money in the end.
When all the improvements are made, the district will ultimately save money in lower operating costs because the buildings will be more energy efficient," said Gurka
GREG GURKA NAMED SCHOOL INTERIM SUPERINTENDENT
The North Royalton Board of Education
unanimously approved the appointment of Greg Gurka
as the interim School Superintendent of the North Royalton School District
at a special Board meeting that took place on Wednesday, April 17.
The term of his
appointment will run from July 1, 2013 to June 30, 2014.
will take the place of Ed Vittardi, who will be retiring on June 30.
Gurka started with the North Royalton School District in 2002 as Principal of Albion Elementary and was then promoted to Director of Personnel in 2006.
He served as elementary Principal for Avon Lake Schools, as Assistant Middle School Principal for North Olmsted Schools and a Middle School Principal in Parma.
He was also an Administrative Associate for the Cleveland Heights-University Heights Schools, as well as a science and social studies teacher.
He has received his Master's degree in Education and Administration from Cleveland State University and his Superintendent's License from Ashland University.
With that in mind, the board reached out again to current Director of Personnel, Greg Gurka
, and he has accepted the position," said Vittardi.
Barbara Zindroski, who cast an affirmative vote for Gurka
, said that "consistency is a necessity" in the school community.
"We look forward to having Mr. Gurka
carry on the responsibilities and work as the district's interim superintendent.
"I accept the challenge and look forward to assisting the district in this new role," said Gurka
"I will remain dedicated to assuring a quality education for every child in our community and feel strongly in our Strategic Plan and direction our district is headed.
At the meeting, Gurka
stated, "thank you for your confidence.