A retired South Putnam bus driver has received a distinguished honor from the governor for her years of faithful service.
Transportation Director Chuck Shaffer informed the South Putnam School Board during its meeting Monday about two retired bus drivers from Clay County who had received Distinguished Hoosier awards from Governor Mitch Daniels for their 15 years of services.
Well, South Putnam had bus driver Doris Ratcliff, who had retired after 34 years of service, and they felt she deserved to receive the same award.
Shaffer read the nomination letter that was sent to the governor's office. Doris was an dedicated driver, "care for thousands of children" during her career. "She was invaluable mentor to many of those students and other school bus drivers as well," Shaffer said.
Ratcliff has also volunteered her time and supported many school activities. She received a certificate from the governor's office, appointing her to the status of Distinguished Hoosier. Ratcliff joins the list of other Hoosiers who have received this honor.
"You are very worthy of this award, and we appreciate all the efforts and the work you have done over the years," Supt. Bruce Bernhardt said.
"Congratulations Doris, and thank for your years of service," Vice President Mike Rissler said.
The board also held a public hearing for additional appropriations. Bernhardt said that last month the board asked to advertise for additional appropriations for $55,000 in special education fund and for $680,000 in the capital projects fund.
Bernhardt said, "We're not asking for additional money. It doesn't raise taxes or cost anyone anything."
According to Bernhardt, in 2006 the board sold bonds on the administration building due financial problems that were encountered during the previous school year.
The money from those bonds was immediately placed into those two funds, but the board did not have legal authority to spend that money. By approving the appropriations, the board will have that authority.
Bernhardt did confirm that selling these bonds did create more debt for the corporation, but the interest rate on the bonds was below 5 percent.
The board approved the additional appropriations for $55,000 in special education fund and $680,000 in capital projects fund.
In other business, the board:
* Approved the hiring of the following staff: elementary art teacher Rustin Swartzentruber for the second semester, high school tech ed. teacher Anthony Abrams for the second semester, high school computer lab aide Susanne Sullivan, high school assistant swim coach Christina Lund, high school assistant baseball coach James Hanlin and high school National Honor Society co-sponsors Tiffany Dickson and Andy Dorsett. The board also approved volunteers Jennifer Lund and Shanna Heim for high school swim assistant and Jill Hutcheson, Holly Booe and Jamie Foy for high school girls' basketball.
* Learned that students from each grade level at the high school received the status of student of the month. Those students are: 7th graders Dominic Fulk, 8th grader Jacob Gould, 9th grader Heath Schlatter, 10th grader Jessica Minor, 11th grader Kaleigh Vaughn and 12th grader Cory McCallie.
* Listened to a presentation from Morgan Cheatham on the Family, Career and Community Leaders of America's national cluster meeting in St. Louis. Cheatham was appointed to the state position of state FCCLA Vice President of Finances. The group listened to speakers about accepting people for who they are and staying connected to a person's dreams.
The group has also participated in a canned food drive and will be participating in making pillow cases for the shelter. Cheatham said they have also applied to ring the bells for the Salvation Army.
* Approved the FCCLA's field trip to St. Louis. Bernhardt said this request was not on the board's agenda last month, but the board did approve request.
* Learned that there would be a pre-legislative meeting at 8 a,m. Saturday, Dec. 16 at Farm Bureau before the representatives convene for a long session. This meeting is open to the public.
The next regularly scheduled board meeting is set for Monday, Dec. 18 at 7 p.m. in the music room at Central Elementary. This meeting is open to the public.