The Newbury Board of Education Monday approved the resignation of five district educators and coaches, including the high school assistant principal. The board also reappointed supplemental positions for the 2019-2020 school year.

The resignations effective for the 2019-2020 school year included teachers Thomas Pokorny and Alexandria Kerman; Carla Richardson, the head girls basketball coach; Jack Tayek, the drama director for the fall and spring productions and Assistant Principal Anthony Forfia, who will continue as the district’s athletic director.

“These educators and coaches that are leaving, they mean a lot to us,” Board Member Martin Sanders said. He offered sentiments to the educators and coaches commending their dedication and positive spirits through their years of working in the school district.

The 2019-2020 academic year will likely be the last for the Newbury district which is in the midst of negotiating a territory transfer to the West Geauga Local School District.

Mr. Sanders told Mr. Forfia that it was a pleasure coaching under him as the district’s athletic director and said he appreciated his organization of the athletics program.

Other members of the board echoed his sentiments and agreed that the now former members of the school district will be missed.

The board also approved the hiring of several district employees as coaches and various other supplemental positions including coaches, tutors bus drivers and directors for the 2019-2020 school year.

Ryan Williams was hired as the head football coach at $5,601 and hired into the summer, winter and spring weight room program at $2,206 each. George O’Hamill was hired as the assistant football coach at $3,734. Lauren Kristo was hired as the cheerleading coach for the football season at $1,697.

Mr. Forfia, who will be continuing as the Newbury athletic director, was hired for $8,147 for the school year and $950 for the summer.

Michael Chaffee, Sam Miller, Carrie Hinkle and many others were hired in as supplementary coaches, directors, advisers and more.

Before the board approved the motions to accept the hiring of the supplemental positions, Board Member Kimya Matthews explained why the board moved forward with the hiring, mentioning the importance of their roles in students’ school career with the upcoming territory transfer with West Geauga.

“I think we could all agree the biggest benefit of extracurricular activities is teaching students how to work well with others, play in a role to support team goals and learn about making the best of situations and constantly adapt to change,” Mrs. Matthews said. “I fear as a district, we have missed a very important opportunity this year to steward some of our students positively through the changes taking place in our district.”

Mrs. Matthews acknowledged that the transition will be difficult for the upcoming juniors and sophomores with the changes happening close to the end of their high school careers. She added that reappointing the positions will help maintain continuity for the older students and not appointing the positions would risk putting the district in “unstable situations.”

She added that she supports Superintendent Dr. Jacqueline Hoynes’ judgment in making the recommendation to reappoint “as well as her ability to lead the heads of the supplemental positions to find positive ways of managing our students’ expectations and finding leadership roles through the transition that we have ahead.”

Sam Cottrill started reporting for the Times in February 2019 and covers Auburn, Bainbridge, Bentleyville and Chagrin, Kenston, Solon and West Geauga schools. She graduated from Kent State University in 2018 with a bachelor's degree in journalism.

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