COVENTRY TWP. Voters in the Coventry Local School District will decide on an earned income tax issuue during the November election.
During the June 19 meeting, the Board of Education approved to place the issue on the ballot, which would generate approximately $2.6 million annually.
Coventry Treasurer Sherry Tyson said the district has been deficit spending, something that needs to end before it can be removed from fiscal emergency. The proposed income tax levy would help raise enough revenue to prevent the district from deficit spending, she said.
Board member Josh Hostetler said the earned income tax issue is a topic the board has been discussing in workshops. He said the 1 percent income tax would only be on earned income.
Hostetler said the plan is to let an emergency levy from 2015 expire and the board will also not seek renewal of that property tax levy. The earned income tax levy would replace the property tax levy.
Board member Chris Davis stressed the importance of having community meetings about the levy as November approaches.
Support for coach
The Board of Education heard from several community members, coaches and football players about football offensive coordinator Devon McAfee.
Those in attendance said McAfee was asked not to return to the football program and told the board to rethink their decision.
Community member Tina Barrett said Coventry will never find a great dedicated coach like McAfee.
McAfee’s wife, Sarah, spoke in support of him and said his coaching career began six years ago. She said her husband is a staple for the football program and believes the program would take a step backward without him.
Recently, McAfee was named head basketball coach.
Rich Smith, who has been coaching 19 years, said the football team is a family.
“Dev is a part of our family,” Smith said. “I would hate to lose him. When you take away someone from your family it hurts.”
After the meeting Superintendent Lisa Blough said McAfee is one of the most dedicated, caring and hard-working members of the Coventry Schools team.
“Devon recently accepted the head boys basketball coaching position,” Blough said. “In doing so, he was presented with an option - be the head coach of the boys basketball program and step down from coaching football or not take the head coaching position and continue on with the football coaching position. He selected the head basketball position.”
She said recently parents and football players found out about the situation and were disappointed.
“At this point, we are considering all possible options in an effort to best meet the needs of both athletic teams, players and programs,” Blough said.
In other business June 19, the board:
- Approved a contract with Akron Children's Hospital for school health services.
- Approved a three-year contract with Alco Chemical to provide custodial supplies to the district.
- Approved a contract with Mark Bindus as the school's dietitian.
- Approved the student handbook for the 2019-20 school year.
- Approved two contracts with NeoNet for 190 Chromebooks. Some of the Chromebooks will be paid for using student fees.
- Approved for staggered start times as the freshman will have an orientation day Aug. 19 and Aug. 20 school will begin for the rest of the students.
- Approved start times for the 2019-20 school year. Coventry High School will be from 7:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Coventry Middle School will be 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Coventry Elementary School will be 8:45 a.m. to 3:20 p.m.
- Approved parking fines at Coventry High School if a vehicle is parked in the wrong spot on the third violation a $5 fine will be issued.
- Heard from Blough about the district joining a new athletic conference the Metro Athletic Conference. The district will still be a part of the Portage Trail Conference for the 2019-20 school year and won’t join the new league until the following year.
- Entered executive session for personnel with no action taken.
The next Coventry Local Schools board meeting will be 6 p.m. July 17 at Coventry Elementary School.