State money, local tax hike may bring new school to Monroe

Published: Tuesday, October 17, 2017 @ 12:40 PM
Updated: Tuesday, October 17, 2017 @ 1:54 PM

            Students change classes in the junior high section of Monroe Junior/Senior High School Tuesday, Oct. 17. Monroe’s school board could decide to move on a new school tax hike and building plan next year as a way to go to handle the district’s growing enrollment. NICK GRAHAM/STAFF
Students change classes in the junior high section of Monroe Junior/Senior High School Tuesday, Oct. 17. Monroe’s school board could decide to move on a new school tax hike and building plan next year as a way to go to handle the district’s growing enrollment. NICK GRAHAM/STAFF

Monroe’s newest school may rise from the site of its just-demolished, oldest school.

But residents will first have to reach into their wallets in 2018 to make it happen.

Monroe’s school board could decide to move on a new school tax hike and building plan next year as a way to go to handle the district’s growing enrollment.

MORE: Growing Monroe Schools needs more classrooms, officials say

The community heard some of the building options Monday during a special public presentation by school officials at the Butler County district’s grades two through 12 school building, which has been suffering overcrowding in recent years.

Adding to the squeeze is Monroe’s aging primary school, which was built in 1954.

The primary school, which is adjacent to the now empty 29 acres that used to be the former Lemon-Monroe school campus, may also be demolished to make way for a new elementary or middle school under one of the scenarios being considered by school officials.

MORE: Monroe’s oldest school demolished

“We are packed to the gills,” Monroe Board of Education Vice President David Grant told more than 80 residents who attended the public forum designed to answer their questions and layout the possible timeline for a school tax hike and new building.

District officials said the decision to put a school building bond issue on November 2018 ballot will require gathering more information from state education officials. Specifically those at the Ohio Facilities Construction Commission (OFCC) — which will soon be providing decade-ahead enrollment projections and funding options that could mean the state will pay for about 50 percent of the costs for a new school.

The amount of the tax bond issue to cover school construction costs, its mileage and cost per property owner will be determined by OFCC and other calculations by spring of 2018, according to school district officials.

When the Monroe school system split from Middletown Schools in 2001, it enrolled 1,300 students. Enrollment now is more than 2,800.

RELATED: 5 things to know about Monroe Schools

Monroe Junior High Principal Joe Ward told the audience that classrooms are overflowing and often students are forced to study in the hallways.

“We’ve grown too much. We’ve turned offices into classrooms and our media center is no longer a media center but now holds classes and our school resource officer works in a converted closet,” said Ward.

Monroe Superintendent Phil Cagwin said OFCC officials have already told district officials they will not pay for any renovation of Monroe Primary School because it’s too old.

MORE: Monroe school leader announces retirement

That school — at 225 Macready Ave. — houses student in pre-kindergarten through first grade.

District officials said they estimate that if the school board green lights the new school project — and if voters in November 2018 approve a school bond issue — a new school, which would have students from three to four various grade levels, could open in 2021.

Residents wanting to give their opinion about the facility options can participate in an online survey or call the Monroe Board of Education office at 513-539-2536.

Woman jumps on hood as carjackers take car with baby brother inside

Published: Monday, November 20, 2017 @ 11:55 PM


A 24-year-old woman was thrown from a car on Sunday after trying to save her baby brother from carjackers in DeKalb County, Georgia, police said.

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Two men, one of whom had a gun, forced the woman from her car and took off with the eight-month-old baby still in the back seat, according to WSB-TV.

The woman, who asked not to be named, said she was strapping her brother into his car seat when two men approached them at an apartment complex. 

"This is very terrifying to watch a gun getting pointed in your face and watching your baby brother getting taken away and you can't do nothing," she said.

The woman risked her life to try and stop the suspects.

"She jumped on the vehicle and was holding on to vehicle,” DeKalb County police spokeswoman Officer Shiera Campbell said. 

When she couldn’t hold on any longer, the woman fell to the ground.

"All I could think about was my brother,” she said. “My brother is in that car. I don't care what they do with the car, just give me my brother."

An assistant store manager later found the child on the sidewalk of a Quik Trip convenience store off Wesley Chapel Road just before 10 p.m. 

The men ditched the baby a half-mile away at the convenience store, assistant store manager Alex Robles said. 

"He drops off the baby on the sidewalk, runs back into his car and just speeds off,” Robles said. “He hits a right on Rainbow and we don't see him again.”

Police are still searching for the stolen car and the armed suspects. 

Robles watched the store's surveillance video; he said they found the baby just before 10 p.m. Sunday.

"No parents, no nobody. I was in shock," Robles said. 

Minutes later, the baby was reunited with his family.

The woman said she or anybody in the area, including her baby brother, could have been shot. 

Police have not released a description of the stolen car, but said one of the men was wearing a red hoodie. 

The store clerk said the other man was wearing a white athletic jacket, but other than that, there was nothing identifiable about the suspects.

Scary dashcam video of suspected drunk driver who nearly kills five people

Published: Monday, November 20, 2017 @ 11:25 PM

(Getty file photo)
Jill Waterman/Getty Images
(Getty file photo)(Jill Waterman/Getty Images)

Five people, including three police officers, are lucky to be alive after a suspected drunk driver plowed into their stopped vehicles on the side of the road in Forest Hill, Texas.

Police officers had stopped to tend to a disabled car along Southeast Loop 820, according to the Star-Telegram. They were waiting for a tow truck, with full lights on, when the unthinkable happened. A car headed straight for them, and every terrifying second was caught on dashcam video.

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One officer is clearly the first to notice the speeding vehicle. He shoves everyone out of the way after drawing his gun. The out-of-control car barreled into one patrol car, sideswiped a second police car and narrowly missed the disabled car and everyone on the roadside. It then veered into traffic and swerved back onto the side of the road. Sparks flew as the car ground to a stop.

The driver of the speeding car, 26-year-old Cedric Keith Henson Jr., was detained at the scene and cited for driving while intoxicated. Police rushed to remove him from the car as soon as it stopped.

One patrol car was heavily damaged in the crash. Miraculously, no one was hurt and no other motorists were injured.

Police are using the footage to remind people about the dangers of drunk and impaired driving, according to WILX.

It’s a massive national problem. Someone dies in one of these crashes, on average, once every 51 minutes, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Alcohol-impaired driving deaths alone account for nearly one-third of all driving deaths nationwide, and kill over 10,000 people every year.

Driver accused of OVI in Mad River Twp. crash that snaps power pole

Published: Monday, November 20, 2017 @ 11:08 PM

A 59-year-old Fairborn man has been cited into court on suspicion of OVI after he snapped a power pole before slamming into a tree in the 4200 block of Dayton Springfield Road in Mad River Twp.

Trooper Haley Shreck, Ohio Highway Patrol Springfield Post, said the man was taken to Springfield Regional Medical Center from the accident that occurred just after 6:30 p.m. Monday. 

OTHER LOCAL NEWS: Local teacher arrested in fatal ped strike

The man said he wasn't hurt, Trooper Shreck said, and troopers suspect the drug involved was heroin. Troopers wrote him up on a charge of failure to control as well as OVI. 

According to the preliminary investigation, the man was headed east on Dayton Springfield Road when he drove off the left side of the road, snapped the power pole, continued over a driveway on the left side off the road until striking a tree in the front yard of a home, Shreck said. 

OTHER LOCAL NEWS: 2 injured in head-on crash on St. Paris Pike

The man was alone in a Mercury sedan and no one else was injured in the accident, which occurred between Sundance and Ashbrook drives, the trooper said. 

According to the Ohio Edison online outage page, fewer than five people reported losing power. Company officials estimate that service will be restored sometime late tonight into early Tuesday morning, according to the website.

Got a tip? Call our monitored 24-hour line, 937-259-2237, or send it to

Little American flags dot Miamisburg yard where Navy vet’s big flag was stolen

Published: Monday, November 20, 2017 @ 10:05 PM

An anonymous donor has planted four small American flags in the yard of a Navy veteran living in Miamisburg who had his large flag and pole stolen a week ago.

There has been no update about the theft of the 5-foot-by-7-foot flag and pole that stood in David Schechter's yard for more than a year. 

RELATED: Navy vet from Miamisburg wants stolen American flag back

But a person wishing to remain anonymous decided to install the four flags in a show of support for Schechter. This past weekend, he took to social media to thank the "the unknown lady in the red van" and everyone else who has shown him support. 

Schechter and his girlfriend checked the recording from a neighbor's surveillance camera, but were not able to get anything off of it. His girlfriend filed a theft report with Miamisburg police last week. 

Got a tip? Call our monitored 24-hour line, 937-259-2237, or send it to