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McCabe retiring from school district after 19 years

The Governor Wentworth Regional School District board honored retiring employees last Monday, June 1, at the Skylight Dining Room. Recognized for their service were (front row, l-r): Albert Rose, Philip Thornton, Fred Williams, Warren Tickle, Leonard Martin, Donna Snow, Patricia Allen, Susan Astle, Deb Richter, and Donna San Antonio. Standing behind them were board members (l-r) Don Meader, Chair Jim Rines, Charlene Seibel, Ernie Brown, Stacy Trites, Wendi Fenderson, Diane Drelick, Jack Widmer and Jim Manning. A complete story will follow next week. (Elissa Paquette photo) (click for larger version)
June 04, 2009
WOLFEBORO — After 19 years working for the Governor Wentworth Regional School District, Assistant Superintendent and Title IX Coordinator Dr. Kathleen McCabe is saying farewell. The June 1 school board meeting was McCabe's last, as she will be retiring at the end of the school year.

Board Chair James Rines noted that during her time with the district, McCabe has always had the "students' best interest at heart," fighting "vehemently" for them at all times. Member Ernie Brown added that McCabe's "presence will be missed" by the board. McCabe took the opportunity during closing comments to "thank the taxpayers for letting [her] have this privilege." She commented that it is a "rare occasion" to find a board which "balances fiscal responsibilities and educational values" as well as Governor Wentworth, adding that the "administration in Governor Wentworth care about their students" and believe in "what's best for the community." She urged the community to "be very proud of these people." McCabe has devoted more than 40 years to education and will continue to teach graduate classes at Plymouth State University on a part-time basis.

Business Administrator and School District Clerk Mary Patry announced that the administration is currently in the process of finalizing a five-year note with Northway Bank for $325,000 at an interest rate of 3.61 percent. Ernie Brown remarked that this "remarkable interest rate" only exemplifies the board's intentions to help save the taxpayers money. The bond loan is for the "replacement of the gym roof at the Ossipee Central School including construction, design fees, professional service fees, and any other items incidental to and/or necessary for said roof replacement project." The flat gymnasium roof, originally constructed in 1973, is leaking moisture and wet insulation is adding an extra burden onto the structure. The new TPO roof, while still low pitched, should last approximately 20 years.

Superintendent Jack Robertson announced that on Thursday, May 28, the N.H. Senate approved the final budget, restoring state building aid to Governor Lynch's proposed level of $88 million (94.5 percent). Unfortunately though, Robertson added, the Senate failed to identify a funding source for the budget. Thankfully, an announcement regarding such is anticipated by the week's end.

Brown, Chairman of the Building and Maintenance Committee, highlighted the current efforts of the group and spoke of options for the new multi-purpose building offered by CMK Architects Chip Krause and Al Corzilius. Reading from his own notes, Brown spoke of the deliberative process of choosing a suitable roof for the building. Provided with eight roof configurations, "the Committee thought the [barrel] main roof had the best appearance with the side roofs for the Music and Art areas being flat." He explained that the "change to flat side roofs was necessitated by the requirement to alleviate the water flow created by this large roof and the wet area near the building." In defending the roof selection, Brown stated, "the flat roof will have a 90 mil (1/4 inch) barrier going to roof drains. The water will go to 30,000 gallon holding tanks and will be used for toilets and athletic field irrigation." Chairman James Rines added that the roof comes with a non-prorated 30-year warranty for materials and labor as well as repairs.

Other changes to the building proposal included a ship's ladder to access the catwalk in the auditorium, an expansion of the catwalk itself, and the addition of a "small balcony outside the [sound control] booth for sound control adjustments." The brick structure, not including the geothermal system, has an estimated budget of $10.6 million. The Building and Maintenance Committee tentatively chose June 10 as its next meeting day, 4 p.m. at the SAU office.

Three members of the KRHS Alumni Association Executive Board, Kristie Smith, Erin Donnelly, and Deborah Skelley, updated the board on the association's accomplishments this past year. Smith, Vice President and acting President, read from a letter prepared by the group for the Superintendent. Along with "aiding Kingswood reunion committees, maintaining alumni treasury where most class funds can be located, and maintaining the KRHS Web site and database," the association is responsible for facilitating "successful Alumni Basketball and Hockey games this past November," adding Lester Bean's name to the memorial rock "for his maintenance of the KRHS playing fields in the early years," developing "an application process for such honors," and replacing "all the missing athletic state championship and runner-up plaques." In addition, the alumni were happy to announce that they would be awarding the first of many annual scholarships to a deserving student this year, something the Association has wanted to do for some time now but never before had the funds to do so. Another goal of the group is to "raise funds to help offset the cost of building and installing a new trophy case" for the newly recovered plaques. Robertson referred to the group as the "keepers of memories" who help to carry on traditions and member Charlene Seibel added that the alumni are "a huge service to the community."

Conner MacIver presented the board with his final report as student representative this past Monday evening. After fulfilling the two-year stint, acting as the eyes and ears to the high school for the board members, MacIver will attend the University of New Hampshire in the fall. Known for his thorough reports and quick wit, MacIver stated, "I couldn't have been on a better school board as a representative," adding that he truly enjoyed attending the meetings. His successor has yet to be determined, as the school will be holding elections for this contested position in the upcoming week. Board members agreed that the next student rep. would have a "tough act to follow."

Dr. Theodore Comstock, Executive Director of the New Hampshire School Board Association (NHSBA) presented MacIver with a $1,000 book award for his academic excellence, leadership qualities, and community service efforts. Another criteria of the scholarship is that the recipient be related to a New Hampshire school board member. MacIver's grandfather, Donald Meader, has dutifully served on the board for over 20 years. The NHSBA chooses one student in each of five regions within New Hampshire.

Rines read aloud a letter received by Kingswood High School Principal Paul MacMillan from the Department of Education announcing that both Christopher Mancuso and Caroline Merrell as recipients of the Robert C. Byrd Honors Scholarship in the amount of $1,500. Mancuso and Merrell are two of only 233 students chosen for the award statewide.

The Governor Wentworth Regional School Board will meet next on Monday, June 15, at the SAU office.

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