School Board Notes

October 2019

Meetings in Review


During the October 22, 2019 Board of School Directors meeting, Superintendent Dr. David Zerbe provided a presentation on full day kindergarten. Establishing the value proposition for students, parents, teachers and the district, Dr. Zerbe sought and had the board approve a resolution directing him and the administration to produce a implementation plan for the Board to consider full day kindergarten by August 2022.

The presentation gave focus to the common challenges associated with implementing full day kindergarten and the research behind the advocacy for the program. Dr. Zerbe and members of the Board gave credence to the fact that our efforts forward must have focus on the social, emotional, and behavioral advantages for students. School Directors suggested that, aside from knowing what the projection of costs are with such implementation, they want Dr. Zerbe to provide the options for implementing the program and the means to accomplish that task.

Summarily, Dr. Zerbe indicated that there remains a number of matters to address in terms of information prior to committing to an implementation, but was able to confirm with an 8 to 1 vote that the Board is highly interested in continuing the conversation towards FDK.


As part of the Arrowhead Forward project that targets the construction of a new Arrowhead Elementary School for opening in August of 2022, the Board approved the firm of Bursich Associates of Pottstown, Pa., to provide civil engineering services for the planning, design, and development phase of new construction at Arrowhead Elementary School in the amount of $142,000. This firm was selected from more than 9 applicants to work alongside the district and architectural firm of KCBA towards the development of this project. KCBA has been meeting with the administration, teachers, and support staff over the last 2 months in an information gathering phase to ensure that the school design meets the instructional and operation needs of the students and staff.


The Board voted to eliminate the per capita taxes previously collected under the Public School Code and the Local Tax Enabling Act, effective July 1, 2020. This flat local tax is currently required to be paid by all adult (18 years and older) residents. Municipalities and school districts are given the right to collect a $10.00 per capita tax under ACT 511; and school districts an additional $5.00 under ACT 679. The elimination of this tax by the school district, commonly referred to as a "nuisance tax", will reduce Lower Providence residents by $10 per person and $14 for Worcester residents beginning next tax cycle. Board of School Director Brian Earnshaw outlined a number of reasons he proposed the elimination including removing the exorbitant amount of costs associated with the mere collection of the tax, currently at 10% of the total revenue collected. This collection inefficiency along with uncertainty of inclusivity of all headcounts was enough for this matter to receive a unanimous 9-0 vote.


The Board of School Directors approved several new courses to be implemented at the High School beginning in the 2020-2021 school year. A full year Statistics course will be offered as an option to help students round out their K-12 math experience and prepare them for an increasingly analytical and data-oriented world. An AP German course was also approved, aligning German offerings with those in French and Spanish. Additionally, the social studies courses for grade 9 and 10 students will be Global History I and Global History II. These courses replace the current European History and World Cultures courses, and will give our students a broader view of the many developments that have shaped our world and provide knowledge and skills to understand the complexities of the world.

All other items listed in the October 22, 2019 agenda were approved.

Methacton Award of Excellence

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Six members of the Methacton School District staff were presented Awards of Excellence by School Board President Kim Aubrey-Larcinese, Dr. Zerbe, and Arcola’s Assistant Principal, Mr. Jerry Thompson. This month’s honorees are Colleen Heidel-Butler, 8th Grade Instructional Assistant; Eddie McCaffrey, General Music Teacher (not pictured); Mary Williamson, 8th Grade Social Studies Teacher and Department Coordinator; Nicholle Starson, 7th Grade Special Education Teacher and Department Coordinator; Sophie Noblit, Head Secretary; and, Mary Jo "Jojo" Golden, Head Custodian. All of these outstanding staff members provide support for students, staff, and our community. They are valuable team members and we are pleased to share with everyone how much we appreciate their commitment to the students of the Methacton School District.

"M" Awards

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The Board of School Directors presented more than 170 students with "M" Awards for academic achievement at Arcola. These students have earned a 93% or greater GPA for the 18-19 school year in Grade 7 and Grade 8. We are proud of all our students for their hard work and dedication to achieving academic excellence.

Junior Board Members

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Special thank you to Erik Scribner and Erika Sincere for representing Arcola Intermediate School as Junior Board Representatives for October 2019.

10-22-19 Methacton School District School Board Meeting

October 15, 2019 Work Session Board Meeting

10-15-19 Methacton School District Work Session School Board Meeting

October 7, 2019 Special Meeting of the Board

10-7-19 Methacton School District Special Meeting of the Board

Board Notes

The Methacton School District's Board of School Directors meets each month. School board work session meetings are generally held on the third Tuesday of the month, followed by the regular meeting on the fourth Tuesday (except during the month of December). Regular Board and work session meetings typically take place in the MHS LGI, and all residents are invited to attend. Committee meetings may take place in the Board Room at the Farina Center, or the MHS LGI. Meeting agendas are posted to agenda manager, and start times and locations are posted on the District's website. Please confirm meeting time and location before attending. Download the meeting calendar here. Watch the meeting video online.