Commercial Arts students help Agent Orange Veterans Project

Apr. 22—Commercial arts students from the Lawrence County Career and Technical Center partnered with a school alumnus to help promote a veterans event.

Students made a banner and signs to promote the Veteran Weekend Getaway on May 3 to 5 at Pine Valley Camp at 504 Chapel Drive in Marion Township, Beaver County.

The getaway is organized by the Veteran & Agent Orange Veterans Project and Hugh Coryea, a school maintenance worker, former student and member of the school's hall of fame.

"It was great. The kids were excellent. They did an excellent job," Coryea said.

Coryea said the students listened to all instructions and each was given the chance to come up with the final design.

Robin Nye came up with the design for the banner, while Ryan Banks came up with the design for the signs.

Coryea said the students will be treated to a pizza party May 3 by the organization as a thank you for their hard work and dedication.

The weekend getaway for 75 county veterans was made possible by community donations. It runs from 6 p.m. May 3 to noon May 5.

It is in memory of veteran Kenneth Shiderly Sr., the co-founder of Ken Shiderly Construction, who died in September.

The event will feature a cornhole tournament, a catered meal by Maria Laurenza, a chapel service from the organization's chaplain the Rev. John Fraser and performances from American Idol contestant Morgan Gruber, Elvis Presley impersonator Walt Sanders, The Dorals and Savannah Kelshaw.

There are a few openings remaining. To RSVP, call (724) 651-6747.

In other school news, during its meeting Thursday, the joint operating committee did a first reading of the proposed 2024-25 school budget. It proposes expenses of $7,484,155, with the eight other Lawrence County school districts responsible for $5,695,000 total, of which $5,070,000 is for regular tuition and $625,000 for special education tuition.

The proposed budget needs to be approved by the eight school boards first before it is presented to the JOC for final review and adoption.

The school will apply for a $917,000 state Commonwealth Financing Authority grant to cover the costs of its pending HVAC project.

The project, which costs $825,000, is to replace three air handlers that are original to the building from when it opened in 1969.

Health insurance rates were approved for the next school year, which was an increase of 11.68 percent.

Dental rates for the next school year, a program for flexible instructional days, a comprehensive guidance program and a five-year school internet service agreement with Comcast were approved.

A memorandum of understanding was approved for the I Love U Guys Foundation to help with the school's levels of response and safety protocols. The national nonprofit organization works to protect children in school by using standard reunification methods created through research-backed practices.

The monthly Pride and Promise Award was given to Robert Bird II, an Ellwood City Police Department officer and LCCTC alumnus. He was recognized for saving a man from a burning truck in January in the borough.

"We're proud of his services. We are proud of his bravery," said school Director Leonard Rich. "His high school remembers him."

The school's annual signing day will be held at 1:15 p.m. May 3. It will be held in person at the school and live-streamed on the school's Facebook page.

It is a day to recognize students who have either signed on to a job or co-op program, for a college or technical school or to join the military upon graduation.