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PLCC BOE congratulates students for moving forward despite pandemic

Carolynn Mostyn
Suburbanite correspondent

GREEN Portage Lake Career Center Superintendent Kim Redmond congratulated students on their willingness and ability to adapt to learning in the COVID-19 environment during the school’s May Board of Education meeting.

Redmond reported that the PLCC staff has been busy designing different ways to acknowledge student successes and milestones. Through social media the staff has been able to recognize students who are enrolled in schools to continue their education, those who have enlisted in the military or those who are employed. They have also worked to welcome the incoming class of juniors. A Senior Send Off Parade was held on May 20 to celebrate the class of 2020.

Lisa Tripney, assistant superintendent, reported to the board that all the adult education programs will finish by June 30. Practical Nursing and all Cosmetology programs have been operating virtually and the HVAC and welding programs are back in the building and practicing safe social distancing. Practical nursing students graduated on June 3 and Tripney said most have jobs or job offers.

Tripney said junior students will be keeping their Chromebooks during the summer so that PLCC is prepared to go virtual for the fall if needed. She said PLCC has received a safety grant from the Bureau of Workers Compensation to assist with enhancing safety around the building and over the summer.

“You will notice some big changes,” Tripney said.

Redmond said that she and the superintendents from the PLCC districts – Coventry, Green, Manchester and Springfield – met during the week.

“Everyone is struggling with what are the scenarios for the fall,” Redmond said. “We are working together to be creative and we have some challenges because we work together but, I like to believe because we work together it is going to make it better for our students.”

The board approved the non-renewal of contracts for adult education. This is something that is done each year for adult education in anticipation of enrollment. The school hopes to increase adult education enrollment over the next few years. The non-renewals include Melissa Baumhoer, practical nursing instructor; Laura Campriani, practical nursing part-time clinical lab instructor; Benedict Chouinard, HVAC instructor; Felicia Coldsnow, spa technician instructor; Derrell Hollis, adult education evening receptionist; Rachel Householder, part-time adult education CPR; Mike Kapas, welding instructor; Kathryn Maj, part-time adult education CPR; Mary Ann Morena, practical nursing instructor; George Popa, part-time CPR adult education; Dawn Simpson, cosmetology instructor; Beth Tucker, practical nursing lab instructor; Fernando Wanton, adult education evening receptionist; and Linda Wardle, practical nursing instructor

The board approved the employment contract for Kimberly Robinson, Adult Education Program Manager, for July 1 to June 30, 2021.

Treasuerer Chris Wright said the 35-person NEXUS pipeline coalition met that day and were notified that their percentage of payment has been lowered. Wright said the PLCC was spared in the state budget cuts as career centers were not impacted.

“We were left alone for these two months,” he said.

The next regular meeting for the board will be held at 6 p.m., June 18.