Julie Miller and Susan Tenhundfeld were honored for 27 years to the Lincolnview district on Monday. Both retired at this end of the 2019-2020 school year. (DHI Media/Kirsten Barnhart)
Julie Miller and Susan Tenhundfeld were honored for 27 years to the Lincolnview district on Monday. Both retired at this end of the 2019-2020 school year. (DHI Media/Kirsten Barnhart)

MIDDLE POINT – During Lincolnview’s Board of Education meeting on Monday, high school principal Brad Mendenhall and elementary principal Nita Meyer discussed the results of a recent community survey with the Board.

The Summer 2020 Parent Survey aimed to see which students had access to things like internet, computers, and reliable transportation. It also aimed to gauge how parents are feeling toward COVID-19, especially in regard to sending their children back to school in the fall.

The survey received 386 parent responses. With 607 students, the response rate was around 72 percent of the district, which Meyer said was a pretty good representation of the school.

Assuming there is no COVID-19 vaccine and Lincolnview reopens, 82 percent of parents said they would send their children to school in the traditional school setting. 2 percent said they wouldn’t, while 16 percent were undecided. When asked if students are able to attend in-person school if parents would choose a remote-only option, 76 percent said no, while 5 percent responded yes, and 19 percent were undecided.

When asked if wearing a face mask was optional while in school, would the parent require their student to wear one, 87 percent said no while 13 percent said yes.

"We would have about 100 students who would be asked by their parents to wear a face mask," said Meyer who said that enforcing the use of face masks would be a challenge for the district. "We'd be willing to work with that; I don't know how successful it will be throughout the day."

43 percent of parents said they had no factors that influence concern for return to school, while 40 percent said that building cleanliness would play a factor. Other factors included the number of local COVID-19 cases, class size, COVID-19 testing and vaccination, and social distancing and group gathering restrictions.

Over 90 percent of parents reported that they had some sort of internet access available for their children during the school day, but 28 percent of district students rely on devices provided by Lincolnview Local Schools.

Another factor that many schools are looking at for reopening in the fall is how to safely bring students to school, especially if they are expected to practice social distancing on school buses. 1/4 of Lincolnview respondents said that their student does not have reliable transportation to school, which Mendenhall said would be an issue if buses had limited space.

"To put those students in the best position of success, that's a big concern of mine – getting the kids here to school," said Mendenhall.

The survey also asked what parents thought about Lincolnview's response to the COVID-19 shutdown in the spring. Parents said that the district was good at communicating and being flexible but wished that classes had consistency through what platforms they use to have students turn in assignments.

Mendenhall said he has been in touch with different agencies to find a platform that best works for students and teachers.

Superintendent Jeff Snyder said that Ohio schools are expecting guidance from the state by the end of the week. He said it will take a lot of flexibility and patience to get students back into the classroom.

"It could be daily or weekly that we are going to be asked to do things we haven't done," said Snyder. "Our goal is to have students here every day."

In addition to the parent survey, a staff survey was given and will be used to help develop a plan for the fall.

Also during the meeting, the Lincolnview Board honored two employees that retired this school year. Bus driver and student aide Julie Miller and junior high science teacher Susan Tenhundfeld both retired after 27 years with the district.

Snyder presented each with a plaque recognizing them for their years of service.

In other business, the Board made the following motions:

- Approved of Jeffrey T. Snyder, District Superintendent, as the representative of the Lincolnview Local Board of Education on the Van Wert Area School Insurance Group for the 2020-2021 school year.

- Recommended approval of granting advancement to the "Masters" pay scale for Matthew Evans effective with the beginning of the 2020-2021 school year.

- Approved a list of supplemental and personal service contracts.

- Recommended approval to employ Lucy Rice as the "Bus Runner" to and from Rodoc on an as needed basis for the 2020-2021 school year.

- Recommended approval to employ Craig Staley as our hourly bus maintenance employee at the approved hourly rate to perform limited miscellaneous work under the direction of Rodoc for the 2020-2021 school year.

- Recommended approval of a list of employees for the Lincolnview Community Center front desk; the Community Center is now open.

With no further business, the Board motioned to go into Executive Session for personnel matters concerning the employment and compensation of a public employee and then adjourned. The next meeting is set for July 23 at 6 p.m.