KINGSTON — Wyoming Valley West School Board took heat Wednesday night over changes in the library program at the middle school.
Librarian Joann Prushinski has been transferred from the middle school and is now covering the libraries at three elementary schools. At present, there is no certified librarian at the middle school.
A grievance has been filed by the teachers union over the transfer.
Mike Harper of Kingston presented the board with a petition bearing over 800 names asking the board to reinstate a certified librarian at the middle school. The petition stated WVW middle school students are first exposed to an online catalog and databases at the middle school level and that the absence of a librarian would deprive them of needed skills.
“The love of books, the love of reading and the inspiration of research depends on this,” Harper said. “Kids need every resource they can get,” he said.
Another resident got angry over the situation and said that the lack of a librarian at the middle school was “obscene.”
“Our kids can’t even get a book!” he said.
A third resident asked the board what could be done about the situation.
Board President Gordon Dussinger said nothing could be done as long as the grievance process was ongoing.
After the meeting, Dussinger said the new plan was for the middle school teachers to bring their students to the library. “We call it a resource center,” he said.
Dussinger admitted the board might have to rethink the plan.
“It might not work out,” he said. “If it doesn’t, it doesn’t.”
The board heard a presentation on the proposed 501 (c) (3) foundation for the district. The Spartan Foundation will allow the district to solicit tax-deductible donations from private individuals and from corporations.
The board hired Glenda Hammersley as an occupational therapist at a salary of $47,500 plus a $1,040 2013 stipend.