District visioning committee taking shape

By Scott Halasz - [email protected]

XENIA — With a mix of community members, parents, students, local business owners and more, the Xenia schools visioning committee is taking shape.

The first meeting takes place 4:30-6:30 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 23 at the central office, but there is still time to join the group.

The visioning committee will be tasked with creating a plan for what education in Xenia should look like in the future and how facilities would support learning. The committee will meet once a month throughout the school year.

“Three times the community was asked to approve a levy to pay for building improvements, and three times that request was denied,” said Dr. Gabe Lofton, Superintendent. “We’re committed to involving the community in this effort to gather input before the next levy request goes before voters. The visioning committee will drive plans that move Xenia forward.”

Six years ago the district completed construction of five new elementary school buildings. The district was planning on new middle and high school buildings to follow.

“The need for building improvements has not gone away,” Lofton said. “We’re creating this committee to give Xenia residents the chance to have their voice heard.”

Residents interested in serving on the committee should contact Wendy Planicka, coordinator of communications, at [email protected] or 937-562-9005. The deadline to RSVP is Monday, Aug.20, as members will be asked to complete a survey and to read through information prior to the first meeting.

Future meeting dates are Sept. 27, Oct. 25, Nov. 15, Dec. 13, Jan. 24, Feb. 28, March 21, April 25, and May 23.

Members are expected to commit to attend each monthly meeting, according to district officials, as each meeting builds upon information shared the previous meeting.

Current members include Garilyn Calhoun, Shawnee Elementary PTO president; Emily Graham, McKinley Elementary PTO president; Stephanie and Brian Stephan, parents and local business owner; Leah Pham, Tecumseh Elementary teacher and PTO co-president; Steve Bogenshutz, local attorney; Denise Davis, community volunteer; Nodie Washington, former school board member; Jared Holloway, assistant city manager; and Dale Louderback, Xenia City Council member.

By Scott Halasz

[email protected]

Contact Scott Halasz at 937-502-4507.

Contact Scott Halasz at 937-502-4507.