RSU 73 accepts retirements of two longtime teachers

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LIVERMORE FALLS — The Regional School Unit 73 board of directors accepted the retirements of two Spruce Mountain High School teachers with a combined 78 years of experience.

William Biliouris has taught science for 42 years, beginning his career at Jay High School and continuing at Spruce Mountain High School when RSU 36 and the Jay School Department combined to form RSU 73.

Raymond Chase Jr., a science teacher at Spruce Mountain High School, has taught at different positions within Jay schools for 36 years.

The retirements take effect at the end of this school year. School board members and Superintendent Kenneth Healey said both teachers will be greatly missed.

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Chairwoman Denise Rodzen asked Transportation Director Ken Vining if there had been problems with people passing school buses as they stopped to drop off or pick up children.

Vining said that it was more of a problem in other parts of Maine, but that RSU 73 bus drivers were taking down license plate numbers and reporting vehicles passing illegally to the police.

Vining said there hadn’t been any bids received for snow removal. They are due by May 5.

Spruce Mountain Adult Education Director Robyn Raymond said the Maine Department of Education approved the adult education program’s Career Pathways plan.

“That allows us to apply for federal funding,” she said.

The Department of Education noted that the Spruce Mountain Adult Education program has strong partnerships with local employers and good testimonials from students who had taken its courses.

One of the students who took courses recently, Alan Chretien, traveled with Raymond to Washington, D.C. this week and shared his experiences with members of Congress. After being laid off from Verso’s Androscoggin Mill in Jay during a series of job cuts, Chretien took courses at Spruce Mountain Adult Education, Raymond said.

He is now taking courses at Kennebec Valley Community College in the electrical lineworker program and is set to graduate in May.

Raymond said the adult education program has started a heating, ventilation and air conditioning class, with 10 people enrolled. She mentioned that people laid off from Verso had an opportunity to take it with the help of federal funding.

Some of the people who are taking it did job shadowing at local employers beforehand to make sure the class would be a good fit for them, Raymond said. She thanked the businesses who showed those signed up for the class what heating, ventilation and air conditioning work was like.

In other business, the board:

• Set May 11 for the next board meeting at 6 p.m. at the Superintendent’s Office on Cedar Street in Livermore Falls;

• Signed a notice for a public hearing on the 2017-18 school budget for 6 p.m. May 18 at Spruce Mountain Middle School in Jay; and

• Signed a warrant and notice for the budget referendum in Jay, Livermore and Livermore Falls for June 13.

bmatulaitis@sunmediagroup.net

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