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Relay For Life raises $65,000
to aid cancer research

Photos by Leon Chuck,

The second annual Relay For Life event went off without a hitch on Friday evening and raised over $65,000 for cancer research. “We still have three weeks to take donations,” said co-chair Ted O’Connor. He added that anyone who wishes to contribute can go to the website 26 separate teams of companies, families and friends totaling over 1,000 participants began a relay walk around the track at Mack Hummon Field on Friday evening. Kids were kept happy with an inflatable maze and jump house. A lumineria display in honor of those who have passed away from cancer was also present. A large number of participants camped out on the field and the event ended a little early with a 10:30 a.m. cloudburst on Saturday. Also co-chairing the event was founding member Michael Vanderburgh.

4 teachers hired for new school year 

Four new teachers were officially hired at last night’s Oakwood Board of Education meeting, adding them to the district’s faculty for the 2008-09 school year.

Among grade-level teachers is Katherine Herms who is assigned to third grade at Smith Elementary School. Herms is a graduate of Northern Kentucky University and the University of Louisville, and has previously taught both second and third grade.

Also new is Melissa Brinn, who will teach fifth grade at Smith Elementary. She is a graduate of Wright State University, and has previously taught junior high math and science.

Cara Leedy joins the faculty as an intervention specialist at the senior high school. She is a graduate of Xavier University and the University of Dayton, and has eight years experience in special education.

Denise Gordon is employed as a Title I reading teacher at Smith Elementary. She is a graduate of Abilene Christian University, Sierra Nevada College and Walden University, and has nine years experience as a reading specialist and first grade teacher.

Teaching art at the junior high school will be retiree/rehiree Thomas Griffith, who has been teaching art at Oakwood for 37 years.

Also new to the staff is Rande Chapman as alumni director, effective July 1.
In commendations, the school board recognized all the Oakwood High School students who participated in the school’s annual film festival. Those who received awards were: Patricia Young in community film for “The Best Pet of All; Brian Stewart, Jack McIntyre and Rachel Eviston, first place in high school film for “Put You on Game”; Josh Johnson, Jacob Allex and Courtney Hutton, second place in high school film for “Sleeping With the Telephone”; Dan Edwards, Jacob Allex, Andrew Chapman, Louis Connelly and Marcus Viereckl, third place in high school film for “The Hall Monitor”; Noah and Isaac Faust, first place in middle school film for “Souper Man and Average Boy”; Carly Sobol, Maddie Snyder, Anne Whalen and Leslie Rasmussen, second place in middle school film for “Lost and Found Attack”; Noah and Isaac Faust, third place in middle school film for “Whiteboard Animation”; and Henry Fulford, Andrew Hensley, Nick Hensley and Jacob Rice in elementary film for “Sacred Donuts: The Death of a Sith.”

Also commended was Mark Hughes, district director of athletics and student activities, for being named president of the Southwest District Athletic Board.
Finally, the board commended the math curriculum review team for their many hours of hard work reviewing Oakwood data, discussing best practices and research on math, and analyzing textbooks and programmatic options. Team members included: Amanda Ammer, Bryan Ellis, Fred Schmitz, Jay Lane, John Loomis, Karin Lauterbach, Kelly Colson, Kristin Bull, Laura Connor, Paul, Stone, Rachel Keyes, Randy Neff, Rosanna Jivens, Amy Malone, Angie Seitzer, Anne Malone, Carolyn Reveal, Chip Mumford, Christopher Morris, Lauren Thie, Michael Di Flora, Michael Hayes, Rana Peake, Ricardo Davila, Tom Jackson, Dr. Janet Herrelko, Daniel Weckstein, Joe Boyle and Kim Kappler.

Among legislation, the school board approved the following:

*A contract with White-Allen Chevrolet for three 2008 Chevy Suburbans at the lowest bid price of $33,200 each.

*The revised job description of technology coordinator.

*Support of the DARE Program for this coming school year.

*Participation in the federal programs that are applicable to the district and for which the district is eligible this coming school year.

*Donations of $1,000 from the Charles R. Neihaus Fund and of $50 from Joan E. Thiele, both toward the John Martin Fund; and also donations to the American Dream Essay Fund.

The school board will hold its next regular meeting Aug. 11, 7:30 p.m. at the central office.

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