Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Notes from Board Meeting, 11/13/07

The televised Board Meeting will be replayed on Channel 96 on Wednesdays at 9:00 am and Sundays at 2:00 pm for your viewing enjoyment :)

The below notes are my personal notes and are not intended to be all-inclusive or official minutes for the Board of Education meetings and are provided as a request from my supporters and the general public in a personal effort to be more transparent. Although I have diligently tried to make these notes as unbiased and accurate as possible, I am only human and do make mistakes. Please follow-up for official minutes upon approval. For copies of printed reports presented visit Board Docs.

Public Forum
  • Female - spoke with Mr. Cunningham prior to public forum. Will hold off on commenting at this time because Cunningham offered to work on issues relayed in an email to the Board.
  • Male - Over testing. Teaching to the test takes away valuable instruction time. Statistics artificially depict actual education. Look outside the norm. Kids only learning "inside the box". No creative thinking skills being taught.
  • Male - Rethink high school schedules for better economy. Pilot program for Stone, Westlake, and North Point on a student volunteer basis. Have one school start at 7:30 and then have the same school start another session of high school courses at 2:30 or 3:00. Allow one school to offer year round school. The third school would have a traditional schedule.

Action - Approval of Minutes

*Vote to approve 9/24/07 and 10/9/07 minutes

New High School 2011 - SHW Design group
  • View Report HERE
  • View presentation HERE
  • "Green" elements discussed
  • large parking lot put on north end to keep heat from entering the building
  • Carrington - Faculty space and bathrooms seems larger than necessary
  • SHW - not all teachers will have a dedicated classroom. Lounge used as office space
  • Carrington - Fire alarm system flows are there but tampers are not
  • SHW - That's a narrative and will be addressed later
  • Bailey - Flat roof?
  • SHW - it is slanted per state regulation 1/4 inch per foot
  • Bailey - Showers...modest?
  • SHW - yes
Correspondence/Board Member Updates
  • Abell - invited by the National School Board Association to present a session on blogging and engaging the community at the National Conference in March. She accepted
  • Carrington - Vice Principal Jones at Lackey being inducted into the Hall of Fame
  • Pedersen - Thank you to Wise for presenting at the legislative session. Senate & House are working diligently to save education funding.

Report – Superintendent – Jim Richmond

  • View Report HERE
  • Loss of 4 students at LaPlata; crisis plan worked well
  • Report cards issued, conferences
  • Parents @ School web-site still working on glitches
  • American Freedom Week activities. JROTC participated in Veterans Day Parade
  • 11/19 Student Recognition
  • 12/1 All County Chorus Concerts
  • Audit report clean. No findings
  • Cognitive Abilities Test conducted this week
  • Communications Department won award for presentation on Digital Classroom
Report – EACC – Bill Fisher
  • View Report HERE
  • Thanks to Wise for presenting to legislation
  • currently campaigning to lobby our legislators in Annapolis to fund Governors Budget with no freezes and no caps to school systems
  • invites BOE members to Annapolis with him
  • American Education Week
  • 12/12 Annual legislative reception @ CSM

Report - Student Board Member - Ashin Shah

  • NO CCASC Meeting this month
  • 10/27 MS attended leadership conference
  • 2 students will go to legislative conference @ Chopticon
  • Kids Helping Hopkins is adopted charity and fundraising
  • SGA coordinates all homecomings. Successful
  • Annual Senior Citizens Prom held in February

Report - Deputy Superintendent - Ron Cunningham, Keith Grier - Student Services - School Psychologists

  • View Power Point Presentation HERE
  • 38,000 national, 750 state, 30 county
  • ratio recommended 1:1000 students; we are 1:1404 and steadily improving
  • Training and credentials
  • Safe Schools
  • Suicide Prevention - 45 risk assessments performed already this school year. Assessments tracked from school to schools in event of transfer or promotion
  • Risk assessments have increases dramatically. Not shocking. Means system is working and students are talking instead of acting
  • Violent Risk assessments
  • Wise - Student Support Team - still operating?
  • Grier - Yes
  • Cook - School Counselor credentials
  • Grier - Varies but at least a masters
  • Carrington - Who can make a referral and is it confidential
  • Anyone and depends on case. Students can report confidentially
  • Abell - actual # of suicides or attempted over last few years
  • Grier - Actual confirmed and reported approx. 1 per year x 6 years. steady
  • Pedersen - how long is crisis team at incidents?
  • Grier - until school returns to normalcy. Day after event full team is dispatched and then weaned
  • Grier - Report next month on homeless students

Report – Gifted Education - Judy Estep

  • View Power Point Presentation HERE
  • CogAT Test per COMAR Guidelines requiring identification of Gifted Education students
  • Parent notification; parents will receive scores
  • Staff development ongoing
  • Multiple criteria
  • not to identify and label students. Identify students with additional needs
  • Additional duties to gifted resource teachers. Need to be full-time at all schools.
  • Procedure = broad based screening, in depth assessment, students needs matched to services, parent information
  • Services available at all schools
  • Wise - CogAT doesn't show creative side. Teacher recommendation comes in? What if a child is good at Art...what is the plan?
  • Estep - Yes...teacher or parent referral and as for a plan, we are not at that stage yet.
  • Cook - worried about pressure with tagging students
  • Pedersen - Middle school students picked up by parents and transported to high school math class...Do you this trend increasing or offering more at home school. Some students aren't mature enough to be in the high school environment
  • Estep - more at home school
  • Cook - Leadership aspect
  • Estep - Teachers or parent recommendation
  • Wise - television used for courses
  • Yes...all technologies

Report – Addition of Courses - Judy Estep, Wanda Sellers

  • View Report HERE
  • Marketing Practices & Principles (Business Education)
  • Web Design and Development (Computer Technology)
  • Pedersen - different levels available
  • Sellers - instructor can provide individualized instruction for advanced students
  • Bailey - Pilot program criteria? Cost? Materials? Financial literacy
  • Sellers - Pilot phase. Teacher interest, need, student interest. Staff availability, materials supplied by CCPS and a lot of free materials used. Committee approves. Investment and Financial Management already offered
  • Carrington - wants more info on that course and possibly make it a mandatory class

Report – Supporting Services (CIP)- Steve Hagis, Jerry Barrett

  • See report HERE
  • Presented CIP to IAC. Well received
  • Neal - 55% complete
  • Somers - Phase one almost complete. Transition to Phase two over holidays
  • Craik - all work remaining is on interior and being completed after school hours. Completed by end of the year
  • Wise - Craik flat roof?
  • Hagis - No it is sloped

Report – Budget (Audit) – Paul Balides

  • View Report HERE
  • View Audit Letter HERE
  • Clean audit
  • financial statements are in accordance with regulations
  • internal control - no material weaknesses
  • no instances of non-compliance with laws and regulations
  • nothing negative or out of the ordinary
  • performed our audits for two years. Also audits Charles County Government

Report - Bridge to Excellence - Paul Balides

  • See Report HERE
  • funds sunsets Fall 2008. Additional funds 04-08
  • funding $46.2M over 5 years
  • Expenditures = highly qualified teachers, materials, class size reduction, technology, full-day kindergarten, NCLB initiatives, transfer state grants, North Point
  • Revenues = $46,152,411
  • Expenses = $61,184,789
  • Wise - Extremely thorough report
  • Pedersen - thank you, very thorough

Action - Personnel

*Vote to approve Personnel

Unfinished Business

  • None

New Business/Future Agenda Items

  • View 2008 Legislative Positions DRAFT HERE presented by Attorney Eric Schwartz
  • Pedersen - input staff based?
  • Schwartz - Yes
  • Abell - Reason for change in presentation from previous years? In prior years the past Legislative Positions were given to the Board...board and staff worked on revising. View 2007 Legislative Positions HERE. Requested reason for omitted legislative positions.
  • Schwartz - Staff recommendation. Not trying to tell the Board its position. Sex Education - directly in conflict with legislative position on curriculum mandates. Student Attendance - didn't reflect any interest in Annapolis. Board may want to consider other options. Litigation Matters - Ditto. Recall Charles County Elected Officials - not an issue any more.
  • Pedersen - Attendance issues. 11 unexcused absences = no driving permit. State legislation
  • Schwartz - If topic not addressed in this paper, it can be addressed when it becomes an issue and Board can take a position at that time.
  • Shah - Pupil transportation and seat belts
  • Schwartz - school buses designed differently. Seat belts have NOT shown increased safety on school buses
  • Bailey - proposes legislation for retire/rehire
  • Schwartz - already in the package
  • Bailey - proposes restructure of school construction formula for funds. Change to 70% enrollment growth; 20% renovation; 10% enrollment
  • Schwartz - enrollment decreased in most counties. Legislation won't have support because of that. Current formula intent was to remove the politics.
  • Pedersen - Aging School Program
  • Barrett - funds for aging schools - fields, carpets, floors, etc

*Motion by Bailey, seconded by Cook to request staff propose legislative recommendations on school construction

  • Pedersen - future growth indicates need for change in formula
  • Bailey - proposes NCLB certification requirement needs a broader range
  • Hettel - State Board already has a Task committee looking into this. Not a legislative matter
  • Abell - requests the board review the Communication Goal passed in May 05 to ensure we are on target
  • Abell - requests the board review the Board Benchmarks passed in October 05 to ensure progress or changes the new board would like to implement
  • Abell - Policy 8000 is outdated and needs to be revised


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