DIXFIELD — Barbara Chow of Dixfield was reelected chairwoman of the Regional School Unit 56 board of directors and Carl Lueders of Canton was elected vice chairman at Tuesday’s meeting at Dirigo High School.

Chow has held the position since the district was formed July 1, 2017. Lueders was elected to the board in June 2018.

In other action, the board approved a $132,750 bond from Androscoggin Bank to buy a school bus. Interest on the three-year loan is 5.74%.

“We had approval to purchase a new bus from the state, and then in May at the budget meeting we received approval from the voters to do a three-year note for up to $132,750 for the school bus,” Business Manager Mary Dailey said.

She acknowledged that state government subsidies will cover about two-thirds of the cost.

She said she received four bids with annual interest rates ranging from 4.75% to 6.35%.


In another matter, the board approved changing an after-school community service club for students at the T.W. Kelly Dirigo Middle School in Dixfield to a craft club. Principal Jason Long requested the change, saying that after three years of holding the Early Act Club, not enough students were involved to satisfy its goals.

“The original goal was to have 15 students participate in at least 10 hours of community service through this Early Act Club that was directly valuable to our community. It never lived up to that,” Long said. The number of students involved “fell way short,” he said.

Long noticed that a volunteer craft club held after school last year received a lot of interest from students, especially those wanting to express their creative and artistic ideas.

“My philosophy with after-school activities is that it’s really important that everyone in middle school finds a place they feel like they fit in,” he said.

The craft club will run on a trial basis this year and use money earmarked for the prior club’s adviser for the new club’s  adviser, Long said.

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