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Twinsburg -- Nearly 4,200 Twinsburg City School District students will say goodbye to summer vacation and hello to a new school year when classes begin Aug. 17.
While students have been enjoying the summer break, superintendent Kathryn Powers and other school officials spent their summers preparing for them to return.
"It's been a busy summer," Powers said.
Bus routes have been finalized and mailed to parents, who should have received them already.
Three intervention specialists and four instructional assistants have been hired for new special education units at Dodge Intermediate and Wilcox Primary schools.
Six new teachers and three new members of the administrative staff have also been hired, Powers said.
On the administration side, Timothy Sullen has been named the newest assistant principal at Twinsburg High School, replacing retired assistant principal Ray Warren and joining assistant principals Andrew Popovich and Mike Silverthorn, as well as principal Louise Teringo, in greeting students in the hallways.
Curriculum supervisor Norman Potter will replace Lori Slatterly, who retired following the 2015-16 school year, and Monica Price replaces Marvetta Morman as a special education consultant.
With the exception of the new hires for the special education units, all other hires were replacing someone who retired.
Toward the end of summer, parents were encouraged to use the new InfoSnap online program to fill out the mountain of forms needed each fall.
"InfoSnap is the first thing that has been launched, and we're getting a nice response from parents," Powers said.
The launch of another new program for high school students will happen this fall, she said.
"Naviance is an online program to use for life following high school," Powers said. "Students and parents can receive and send messages regarding going to college, career and tech schools."
A unique feature is that students can submit applications to certain colleges through the site.
"Students are busy, parents are busy, and this way students can track whether application and recommendations have been sent," Powers said. "It's a tool for parents and guidance counselors."
For more information, contact high school guidance counselor Tanie Brennen at 330-486-330, or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org
For grades four through eight, a new reading intervention program will be launched this year as well, Powers said.
"If students are strong in literacy, it will help in all areas," Powers said.
Some school buildings received much-needed capital improvements over the summer, to the tune of about $782,000.
R. B. Chamberlin Middle School got a partial roof replacement at a cost of $224,000, and $65,000 was spent to pave the parking lot behind the media center. New hot water heaters were installed at R.B.C. and Twinsburg High School at a cost of $102,000.
HVAC upgrades at Wilcox Primary, Bissell Elementary and Dodge Intermediate schools cost about $82,000, and THS students can look forward to $74,000 worth of technology upgrades in some of the computer labs and classrooms.
About $13,000 was spent to take care of drainage problems at Tiger Stadium.
The tennis court renovations are complete, as well, at a cost of $222,000, and the district welcomed the public with a ribbon-cutting for the courts Aug. 15.
"I'm excited to welcome back our Tigers for a new year of learning," Powers said. "We appreciate the support of our parents and of the community."