Thursday, January 31, 2008

School Chiefs Get Average of $351,730 After Perks

Total Compensation Far Exceeds Superintendents' Salaries
By Daniel de Vise
Washington Post Staff Writer
Thursday, January 31, 2008; Page PG04

School superintendents in the Washington area will collect salaries ranging from $157,200 to $279,340 in the fiscal year that ends June 30. Factor in benefits and perks, however, and the average annual compensation package swells to $351,730.

Compensation for the school chiefs goes well beyond the salaries reported to the public, according to a review of contracts for 12 superintendents in the District and its suburbs. Contracts routinely allow superintendents to collect tens of thousands in deferred compensation and to cash in weeks of unused leave annually. Superintendents enjoy supplemental insurance policies and retirement plans on top of the benefits available to all public school administrators.

In Montgomery County, the $242,686 salary paid this year to School Superintendent Jerry D. Weast represents not quite half of a total compensation package valued at $489,763. John E. Deasy in Prince George's County will receive $424,080 in total compensation, with less than two-thirds coming from salary, according to figures provided by the school system.

Read more HERE.

Md. Bill To Target Tenure of Grasmick

In the Washington Post...

O'Malley, Schools Superintendent In Power Struggle
By John Wagner
Washington Post Staff Writer
Thursday, January 31, 2008; Page B01
Democratic leaders of the Maryland General Assembly are preparing to push a bill that would effectively rescind the recent four-year reappointment of embattled State Schools Superintendent Nancy S. Grasmick and allow new school board appointees of Gov. Martin O'Malley (D) to decide whether to extend her tenure beyond this year.

The bill, which lawmakers said will be introduced in the Senate by early next week, is the latest move in a bitter power struggle between O'Malley, who has feuded with Grasmick and wants her replaced, and a long-serving superintendent who is close to former governors Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. (R) and William Donald Schaefer (D).

Read more HERE.

Meat From 'Sick' Cows Could Have Been Sent to Schools

A nationwide animal abuse investigation and it all ends up in your child's school cafeteria.

The investigation showed a fork-lift being used to shove a “sick” cow into a slaughterhouse.

That video is now the focus of a USDA investigation into a meat company accused of supplying 'bad' meat to schools in 35 states— including Maryland.

Fox 5's Sherri Ly is following the school lunch scare.

Just a short time ago, the agriculture department released a letter saying it has indefinitely suspended the meat company involved from providing beef to its school lunch and federal food programs.

All this came after the Humane Society of the U.S. released disturbing video from a six week investigation.

Read more HERE.

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Light Shed on Schools' Dirty Secret

In a story by the assoicated press...

Heeding a steady drumbeat of sexual misconduct cases involving teachers, at least 15 states are now considering stronger oversight and tougher punishment for educators who take advantage of their students.

Lawmakers say they are concerned about an increasingly well-documented phenomenon: While the vast majority of America's teachers are committed professionals, there also is a persistent problem with sexual misconduct in U.S. schools. When abuse happens, administrators too often fail to let others know about it, and too many legal loopholes let offenders stay in the classroom.

Read more HERE.

In eight states, legislators are pursuing changes to close those gaps, including California, Colorado, Florida, Minnesota, Missouri, Virginia, Washington state and West Virginia.

Bush Calls for NCLB Renewal, ‘Pell Grants for Kids’

At Education Week...

President Bush used his final State of the Union address to once again call on Congress to reauthorize the No Child Left Behind Act. But the one concrete idea he proposed in the speech—$300 million for public and private school choice—won't generate much enthusiasm in Congress, particularly from Democrats.

The president proposed a program dubbed “Pell Grants for Kids” that would provide grants on a competitive basis to states, school districts, cities, and non-profit organizations to create scholarship programs for low-income students in schools that have missed their achievement targets under the NCLB law, and in high schools in which graduation rates are lower than 60 percent.

Read more HERE

More students passing tests after Thornton funding kicked in

In the Baltimore Sun...

A record $3.3 billion in new local and state school spending during the past five years largely has gone toward the hiring of new teachers, raising salaries and lowering the ratio of students to teachers, according to a new report to the Maryland General Assembly.

At the same time, the number of students passing state reading and math tests has increased in every county.

Read more HERE.

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Notes from Board Work Session, 1/28/08

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:
  • None

Adequate Public Facilities Sub Committee Update (report not online)

  • originally adopted 1999

  • APF districts match high school zones

  • in order to receive an allocation you can wait your turn on a long list or DRRA allows you to come before the commissioners and pay for your allocations

  • 600 per year for the waiting list; 900 for DRRA = 1,500 total allocations yearly

  • All board members in support

Action Item - Change of Board Meeting Time

  • Abell - recommends an alternate proposal based on the CAC and PAC recommendations. 12 - Executive session/lunch; 1:00 Public session; 4:30 Recognition; 6:30 Public Forums; Action items following public forum; Begin in March

*Motion by Abell, seconded by Wise to approve Abell's proposal

Executive Session

Monday, January 28, 2008

Educating Our Children

Two great articles at

A Matter Of Scale: Expanding Educational Opportunities
Bill Gates
Today, more children attend school than at any other point in human history.
Around the world, literacy rates continue to climb. ... But while we have made
progress, we are far from reaching the goal of universal education. For
individuals, education is the prerequisite for opportunity and success. For
communities and nations, educated citizens provide the foundation for
sustainable social and economic progress.

Technology's Greater Role In Education
John Chambers

Educators, governments and businesses understand technology's role in preparing
our next-generation workforce and the importance of competing in a borderless
digital world. We cannot underestimate the impact that a level playing field has
in education, the local economy, job creation and a country’s competitiveness. I
believe that many don't fully understand the impact or the extent of the role
technology will play in the future. I also believe that the real question is
whether we will be prepared when it becomes clear.

Read more HERE...

Saturday, January 26, 2008

REMINDER: Board Work Session, 1/28/08

Just wanted to remind everyone there is a Board Work Session Monday, January 28th.
Can't can watch it live on Channel 96. It will also be re-broadcast on Wednesday at 9:00 am and Sunday at 2:00 pm.

To view the full agenda and the various reports, please visit Board Docs.

6:00 - Public Forum (Must sign-up prior to 6:00)

Work Session:

Action Items:

Executive Session

The Beginning of the End

Md.'s 'No Child Left Behind' in trouble
Jan 26, 2008 3:00 AM (13 hrs ago) by Leah Fabel, The Examiner

WASHINGTON (Map, News) - Maryland students will soon be able to dodge failing marks on state proficiency tests required for graduation. The schools they leave behind, though, will still suffer the consequences.

Administrators fear a Maryland State Board of Education effort to help low-performing high schoolers graduate ends up putting schools at risk of failing to meet the demands of No Child Left Behind.

Read more HERE

It's silly to leave Grasmick behind

And the battle rages on as O'Malley takes another swing a Grasmick...

Nancy S. Grasmick, Maryland's state superintendent of schools, said she's proud of the fact that four different Democrats who've run for governor asked her to be their lieutenant governor.

A fifth Democrat might ask her one day; you'd make some easy money by betting that it won't be Gov. Martin O'Malley. The guv's made it clear: He wants Grasmick out.

Grasmick's a "poster child for No Child Left Behind," O'Malley has groused on public airwaves. What's more, she's "a pawn of the Republican Party."

The guv made those comments on Marc Steiner's radio show. He said them like supporting NCLB and being a pawn of the Republican Party are bad things.

Read more HERE

Friday, January 25, 2008

Snow Day Fiasco

By now I'm sure you have heard about this, but if directly below. If you already know the story, skip to the bottom for the update. Let me know what you think...

Va. Student's Snow-Day Plea Triggers an Online Storm
Washington Post Staff Writer
Wednesday, January 23, 2008; Page A01

Snow days, kids and school officials have always been a delicate mix.

Audio on YouTube

But a phone call to a Fairfax County public school administrator's home last week about a snow day — or lack of one — has taken on a life of its own. Through the ubiquity of Facebook and YouTube, the call has become a rallying cry for students' First Amendment rights, and it shows that the generation gap has become a technological chasm.

More here.
Now for the update...
Remorse, Detention for Snow-Day Caller
Michael Alison Chandler
Washington Post Staff Writer
Saturday, January 26, 2008; Page B01

High school senior Devraj "Dave" S. Kori, who may be remembered someday as the Fairfax County champion of the snow day, will spend a Saturday in detention at Lake Braddock Secondary School for the phone call that started it all.

Superintendent & Board Chairman Resign


In Oklahoma...

The Oklahoma County District Attorney and police are looking into the 21 allegations against Oklahoma City Superintendent John Q.Porter. School board members called a special meeting on Wednesday and voted 6-1 to accept Porter's resignation.

The criminal investigation centers on allegations that Porter misused school district funds.

The board agreed to pay Porter more than $325,000. Officials said Porter will be paid more than $71,000 for his time through June 2008 as well as more than $255,000 from an Oklahoma City Public Schools foundation account.

School board Chairman Cliff Hudson also resigned on Wednesday. Hudson had offered a couple of weeks ago to step down if Porter would do the same. Officials confirmed that Hudson resigned as part of the district's settlement with Porter.

Read more HERE.

Assessment to Rate Principal Leadership to Be Field-Tested

This sounded intriguing...


Starting next month, 300 schools nationwide will take part in a field test of a new way to gauge principals’ effectiveness.
Known as VAL-ED, for the Vanderbilt Assessment of Leadership in Education, the tool has been developed by a team of leadership and testing experts at Vanderbilt University and the University of Pennsylvania to measure leadership behaviors that research has found are associated with student achievement.
“Once principals are on the job, evaluation probably is the key leverage point that you need to get your hands on if you really want to move instructional leadership,” said Joseph F. Murphy, one of the developers of the new measure and a professor of education at Vanderbilt in Nashville, Tenn.

Read more HERE

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Study casts doubt on No Child’s effectiveness

In the Examiner...


In an era of high-stakes testing brought on by the No Child Left Behind Act, new
research finds the overall quality of reading and math instruction to be in
decline, and the students most in need of high-quality teaching as the least
likely to receive it.

Linda Valli, the University of Maryland education
professor who collected the data, said her findings cast doubt on the
effectiveness of NCLB, the federal legislation signed in 2001 aimed at raising
standards and closing the “achievement gap” between high-performing and
low-performing students.

Read more HERE.

Monday, January 21, 2008

New York Measuring Teachers by Test Scores

Today in the New York Times...what do you think?


New York City has embarked on an ambitious experiment, yet to be announced, in which some 2,500 teachers are being measured on how much their students improve on annual standardized tests.

The move is so contentious that principals in some of the 140 schools participating have not told their teachers that they are being scrutinized based on student performance and improvement.

While officials say it is too early to determine how they will use the data, which is already being collected, they say it could eventually be used to help make decisions on teacher tenure or as a significant element in performance evaluations and bonuses. And they hold out the possibility that the ratings for individual teachers could be made public.

Read more HERE

Saturday, January 19, 2008

School Allocation Meeting & More

If you have been following the APFO discussion...CCPS staff and the Board of Education will be meeting with the commissioners on Tuesday, January 22 at 2:30 for their agenda item "School Allocations Cycle."

In addition, the Board of Education members have been asked to join Mr. Richmond at the Starkey building at noon, the same day, to discuss administrative matters.

I have no further detail at this time but I have requested an agenda from the Chairman as well as, minutes for the meeting because I have prior March of Dimes obligations out of town. In the past, when the Board has meet for administrative matters, minutes have not been taken, however I have made the request due to my absence.

Tying Cash Awards to AP-Exam Scores Seen as Paying Off

I must say when I noticed the title of this article, I was shocked. The idea seems a little "out-there", but I try to pride myself in being open-minded. Please provide your feedback and thoughts.


Is there anything wrong with receiving $500 for a test score? What if that inducement seems to help pull up SAT scores and college-enrollment rates among disadvantaged students?

A recent study by C. Kirabo Jackson, a professor of labor economics at Cornell University in Ithaca, N.Y., answers neither of those questions. But as money-for-achievement programs grow in New York City and elsewhere, the research pours new fuel on the debate over whether remuneration works in education and what the trade-offs are.

Published last month on the Cornell Higher Education Research Institute’s Web site, the study found that when students and teachers in disadvantaged Texas public schools were offered up to $500 for each passing Advanced Placement score, AP participation and scores rose.

Read more HERE.

Friday, January 18, 2008

Court Ruling in NCLB Suit Fuels Fight Over Costs

At Education Week...

The National Education Association suggested this week that school districts need not use their own money to pay for obligations under the No Child Left Behind Act, in the wake of a federal appeals court ruling that revived the union’s lawsuit challenging the law as an unfunded federal mandate.
The Jan. 7 ruling means that “as a condition of participation in the No Child Left Behind Act, a school district or state cannot be compelled to use its own resources to carry out that mandate,” Robert H. Chanin, the general counsel of the NEA and the architect of the lawsuit, argued in an interview.
But other supporters of the lawsuit were more cautious, and the defendant in the case—U.S. Secretary of Education Margaret Spellings—suggested that the decision was far from the last word on the subject.

Read more HERE

Thursday, January 17, 2008

O'Malley's crusade against Grasmick, Inc.

Found this post on the Baltimore Sun's blog site.

O'Governor's timing isn't exactly impeccable, is it? He decided to publicly slam Nancy Grasmick again and call for her ouster just as Education Week was ranking Maryland's schools No. 3 nationwide. A longtime state schools superintendent gets to take credit for that - not a first-term governor with only a limited track record of interest in public education.

But, look, children, it's not just bitter, personal partisan politics that motivates O'Governor to go after Nancy Grasmick, one of the most successful public school superintendents in the United States, but a crusade against "unfettered corporatism." Here's Sue Allison, Director of something called Marylanders Against High Stakes Testing, to explain:

"Dr. Grasmick is not only isolated from politics - she has completely isolated herself from the views and concerns of parents. The legislature recently compelled her to do regional public hearings on the High School Assessment program, which she did. But when one of the new O'Malley BOE appointees made the suggestion that they should not vote on the confirming the HSA requirement until all parent concerns raised at those hearings were addressed -this BOE member was quickly shut down by the old Ehrlich appointees. So basically - parents WASTED their time when they traveled far distances to tell the BOE what was actually happening with their silver bullet HSA program.

"BOE members don't even share their email addresses with the public. This set-up makes parents feel completely helpless in this policy making process. We can't vote for anyone who has anything to do with education policy. On the other hand - the Maryland Business Roundtable has complete and unfettered access to Dr. Grasmick and the Board. In fact - the BOE often meets at the offices of the Maryland Business Roundtable. It is the MBRT's views on high stakes testing that always carry the day - despite overwhelming opposition by other education advocacy organizations.

Read more and the comments HERE.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Adequate Public Facilities Ordinance Subcommittee

As you may recall, a joint subcommittee with Board of Education members and County Commissioners as well as respective staff was formed in early 2007. The Board of Education is due to hear the committee's recommendations at it's work session on January 28th. Upon invitation from the Southern Maryland Realtors group, I along with two other board members attended their meeting yesterday morning. It was at this meeting I learned that the committee's recommendations had already been presented to the commissioners and placed on the county web-site. In addition, Jason Groth had developed a number of possible scenarios. The meeting was quite enlightening. The links to the documents are below. Let me know your thoughts.

APFO Subcommittee Recommendations
APFO Scenarios

The Invisible Class

During a recent board meeting, Mr. Bailey raised the question about CCPS' role and guidelines in teaching "undocumented" students. The response from staff was "we teach all children." Then I came across the below article in the American School Board Journal.

Twenty-five years after a landmark Supreme Court case, questions still abound about the role of schools in educating undocumented students.

Read more HERE

UPDATE - I have just learned that ASBJ site is no longer free access. I'm sorry, I am working on a resolution.

Monday, January 14, 2008

'Dashboards' Provide Data On Schools

According to the Washington Post...

U.S. Education Secretary Margaret Spellings has unveiled a new tool to show the public a snapshot of how schools fare in reading and math achievement, graduation rates and participation in challenging Advanced Placement exams.

The so-called dashboards, one for each state and the District, aim to distill the overwhelming amount of data on student achievement into a simple format that illustrates troubles and bright spots for schools. The two-page reports, filled with graphics, include pass rates on national and state reading and math exams for fourth- and eighth-graders, national and state graduation rates and the number of schools meeting or falling short of No Child Left Behind goals.

Read more HERE

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Loudon County Passes Rule Requiring Seat Belts on Buses

Just heard a blurb on the news, I know they were considering it in December and it was an action item for January. Must of passed :) Can't find anything in print yet but when I do it will be added here.


Read more from the Washington Post HERE

School Bus Safety

Found this great article in the American School Board Journal. As always, give me your feedback.

As any school board member can attest, it is difficult to overestimate the importance of transporting students safely. Every single school day, tens of thousands of buses drive millions of miles -- down interstate highways, city streets, and back country roads. Every year, more than 25 million American students ride at least once on a school bus.
Given these demands, bus manufacturers constantly strive to produce safer and more comfortable student transportation. But school boards and district administrators also play key roles in providing safe school buses. Districts across the country are finding ways -- some cutting edge, others tried-and-true—to improve bus safety.
School leaders also must provide the most important element for safety -- a conscientious bus driver. But as is the case with many school-level positions, finding and retaining quality drivers has been a struggle for many districts, leading some to take innovative steps to keep the seats filled.

Read more HERE.

Wednesday, January 09, 2008

Notes from Board Meeting, 1/8/08

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.

Recognition - Summary
Election of Chair
  • Nominations - Wade 6; Wise 1

*Motion by Wise, seconded by Bailey to approve Wade as Chair

Election of Vice-Chair
  • Nominations - Wise 7

*Motion by Bailey, seconded by Cook to approve Wise as Vice-Chair

Public Forum
  • Female - Parent Visitation Policy; concerned with only being able to observe classroom twice in a 9-week period. Progress's too late to help. Trying to help son succeed in school.
  • Female - Parent Visitation Policy. Not parent friendly. Wants a chance to observe more often. Success of North Point...will there be another similar school

Action - Approval of Minutes

*Motion by Wise, seconded by Carrington to accept the Minutes from 12/11/07

Report – Superintendent – Jim Richmond (Given by Ron Cunningham)

  • View Report
  • First semester almost over
  • Started annual school visits
  • Richmond keynote speaker at Public Services Summit held in Stockholm Sweden
  • It's Academic competition - Stone winner
  • First JROTC Military Ball a success
  • 1/30 appeal for school construction funding
  • HS portfolio interviews
Correspondence/Board Member Updates
  • Carrington - MABE Federal Relations Network Committee Meeting
  • Wade - New MABE committee with Governor
  • Wise - Legislation committee meeting with delegate and legislation
  • Abell - Updates from board subcommittees
  • Wade - Will get date for "What Counts" MABE availability
  • Wise - Task Staff Committee will meet this month
Report – EACC – Meg McDonald; McMahon
  • View Update
  • Testing and time consumption. Asks board take a long hard look at testing especially the non-mandated ones. Need more time teaching.
  • Contact legislatures and speaking points
  • Drug/alcohol Policy - confidentiality of medical data is a concern
  • Abell - possible rewording of policy to address issue
  • McDonald - have results delivered to employee not employer; employee responsible for producing a negative result
  • Pedersen - employee can present RX drugs.
  • Pedersen - Testing reduction was part of her campaign and is interested in reaching a compromise
  • Cook - RX abuse. Have an opportunity to list RX before being tested.
  • Cook - Committed to reducing testing

Report - Student Board Member - Ashin Shah

  • Met with Cunningham, Middleton, Coffey, State Farm re: teen driving
  • Other passengers; cell phones; music
  • Bring back Drivers Ed to school day; tougher driving laws
  • Feb 4 students meet w/ Middleton to draft legislation on teen driving
  • Legislative Session at Chopticon
  • Wise 2/2 Shah will be filming It's Academic in DC
  • Wise - impressed with CCASC meeting
  • Richmond - CSM partnership to set up a drivers ed program at every high school on school grounds after school
  • Pedersen - Thank you for invite. Impressed also. CSM program good. Requires parents participation a plus.
  • Abell - private sector concerns about being cut-out of drivers ed partnership
  • Richmond - College program not ours. Private sector will be considered. Nothing finalized
  • Carrington - Same concerns
  • Cunningham - Meeting with CSM and principals & staff. CSM offered their program at our facilities. Students to ride activity buses home. Process of drafting an agreement. Drivers Ed private sector is a for profit and our policy would not permit their participation. CSM is non-profit.

Report - Deputy Superintendent - Ron Cunningham, Keith Grier - Student Services - PBIS

  • View Student Service PBIS; Bill in Congress
  • For all students; attendance on the rise; teacher retention rising; reduction in office referrals
  • State no longer provides training; CCPS trains Calvert & St. Mary's as well.
  • Wise - State stop training and we are doing? Are we getting any funds?
  • Grier - $1,500 and national speakers
  • Cook - local sponsors - prizes? High School - awards? Concerned about quality of training if not nationally done? price per school to implement.
  • Grier - Never broke down by school. Quite expensive to go to training. Better if we do it here and get the speakers to come to us.
  • Dr. Valez - Partnerships like John Hopkins. Make HS part of the team. Reduced process to events or concessions.
  • Carrington - Time involved per school or teacher for training
  • Grier - Several days over the summer and then on location occasionally throughout the year
  • Wise - How do you get other schools on board
  • Grier - They come to us; need another person to help Dr. Valez
  • Pedersen - Other programs working at other schools
  • Dr. Valez - Other programs are incorporated with PBIS

Report – Instruction - Judy Estep - Freshman Seminar

  • View Freshman Seminar Report
  • 9th grade help socially and academically
  • includes financial literacy; visual and media literacy; research and communication skills; abstinence workshop; stress management; Cornell note taking; work expectations; school culture
  • "7 Habits of Highly Effective Teens"
  • Cook - Financial literacy - tie in with college funding? and writing skills
  • Estep - Yes. Journal is incorporated
  • Abell - concern with "mandatory". Do parents know they can opt-out
  • Estep - We do not advertise that you can opt-out because we want all to take it
  • Abell - Other semester courses if opt out
  • Estep - Health
  • AS - Quality of course across all HS; way to measure
  • Estep - Same curriculum; teachers are required to follow; students asked for input; no way to measure
  • Carrington - Some things shouldn't be optional; is that the only financial literacy
  • Estep - No
  • Cook - How is the information presented
  • Estep - Every day is different and every lesson is different
  • Wise - Grade course
  • Estep - Yes

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

  • See report CIP Update
  • Neal is 65% complete
  • Somers pPhase I complete; Phase II begins on 1st floor
  • Craik still needs work on controls and balancing. Complete by 1/31
  • Mt Hope Health Dept requested percolation test for waste water system replacement
  • Diggs portable classroom modular facility almost complete
  • Will have appt time for annual "beg-a-thon" by end of week
  • Cook - portables with restrooms and water?
  • Hagis - need sanitary lines and they are not where we need the relocateables. Very cost prohibitive
  • Wise - Bulging brick at Craik? Carpet?
  • Wineland - Due to leaky roof. New carpet to come.
  • Pedersen - North Point usage fees email
  • Wineland - Numerous out-of-county requests; Parks & Rec and government teams are still exempt

Report - Budget - Paul Balides

  • View Report Budget Update
  • On target
  • Pedersen - What would budget cut from state do to our budget with the addition of another school. Where would we take it?
  • Balides - State has not finalized cut

Action - Personnel

*Motion by Wise, seconded by Pedersen to approve Personnel

Action - Drug Alcohol Testing Program Policy

  • Specifically a drug/alcohol test
  • Cook - Training specifics
  • Hettel - DOT training. Already implemented with bus drivers
  • Carrington - enough personnel available to implement
  • Hettel - Definitely. Only foresee possibily 2-3 per year
  • Carrington - Almost every industry has a testing program in effect
  • Wise - Why do we even accpet .04
  • Hettel - State standard
  • Pedersen - Concerned we haven't received public input, whats the rush
  • Abell - Clarification...two meetings are standard if no major changes have been made. It was a report item last month and an action item this month. Same test already performed for bus drivers
  • Bailey - Rules...Alford Plea and no lo contender (sp) are they the same
  • Schwartz - Alford Plea means enough evidence to convict. Treated as a guilty.

*Motion by Abell, seconded by Wise to approve Drug/Alcohol Testing Program Policy
Yes = Abell, Bailey, Carrington, Pedersen, Wade, Wise; No = Cook

Unfinished Business

  • Abell - Policy 8000 - advised Board we need to revise at the November meeting
  • Wade - March work session

New Business - Board Meeting Time

  • Wise - Recommends Executive session at 11; lunch at 12; meeting begins at 1; recognition at 4:30; Public forum at 5:30
  • Cook - 6:30 time great for commuters
  • Abell - Need public forum before action items
  • Cook - Accept emails and letter correspondance
  • Abell - recommend postponing and receive feed back from communication advisory committee
  • Pedersen - concerned with staff staying late and with changing times too quickly
  • Wise - agress with Abell to get recommendations
  • Carrington - Doesn't think we need to ask the community for every decision we make
  • Cook - postpone
  • Postponed for input from committee

New Business - Usage Fees at North Point Fields

  • out of county organizations; numerous requests
  • change does nothing to community service or government teams/organizations
  • county budget discussion
  • Carrington - Are they asking to use NP specifically; YES
  • Wineland - Nothing changes for in county
  • Carrington - What happens to funds collected? Life expectancy of field?
  • Richmond - funds stay at NP for maintenance of field
  • Wineland - Frequency of use and type of use
  • Richmond - Told it would be maintenance free for 10 years and then major renovations
  • Cook - How did staff come up with the fee schedule
  • Wineland - Same as convocation center at NP
  • Abell - Specifically...LPBK & Westlake Bulldogs are exempt from fee?
  • Wineland - When they are playing in county teams under the umbrella of community services. If they hold fundraisers, they are no longer under the umbrella of community services. If they invite out-of-county teams they are no longer under the umbrella.
  • Abell - Urgency of tonight over next month
  • Wineland - Numerous requests from agencies
  • Pedersen - Staff time charged
  • Wineland - $40 per hour event supervisor
  • Bailey - Cost to renovate field in 10 years
  • Wineland - approx. $700,000
  • Bailey - approx anticipated revenue
  • Wineland - too many unknowns
  • Bailey - Private schools??
  • Abell - Still concerned with our in-county youth teams and their vitality. No problem charging out-of-county organizations youth and adults but concerned how this will adversely affect our youth organizations.
  • Abell - If pay $1,000 fee can the agency sell concessions. Currently Boosters are required
  • Wineland - No. Health department rules
  • Pedersen - Other facilities they can use such as local parks.

*Motion by Bailey, seconded by Wise to accept the Superintendent's Recommendation
Yes = Bailey, Carrington, Cook, Pedersen, Wade, Wise; No = Abell

Future Agenda Items

  • Cook - Testing and teacher work load
  • Abell - Clarification...lists of test, when given, work load on teachers not how or what. Possibly slim down
  • Pedersen - agrees


Saturday, January 05, 2008

Drivers Edge

This is a great driving experience for all teenagers and young adults. I highy recommend it and best of all it is absolutely FREE!

Driver's Edge is a non-profit organization and public charity solely funded by donations, public grants and corporate sponsorships.

Taught behind the wheel and in the classroom with an "MTV" flavor, Driver's Edge was originally developed to help combat the staggering number of automobile collisions and fatalities that involve our young drivers.

The course is taught by professional race car drivers and performance driving instructors and empowers young drivers through a unique combination of classroom discussions and behind the wheel defensive driving exercises designed to help erase the "Fast and the Furious" and video game mentalities that many youth possess.

Participants receive expert instruction on skid control, evasive lane change manuevers, anti-lock braking skills, panic braking techniques and much more. What does the car feel like when it is skidding seemingly out of control, they will get to feel it and you (the parents) will too!

Check it out HERE.

REMINDER: Board Meeting, 1/8/08

Just wanted to remind everyone there is a Board Meeting Tuesday, January 8th.
Can't can watch it live on Channel 96. It will also be re-broadcast on Wednesday at 9:00 am and Sunday at 2:00 pm.

3:30 - Executive Session
4:30 - Recognition
5:30 - Board Meeting begins
6:30 - Public Forum (Must sign-up prior to 6:30)

The remainder of the meeting immediately follows Public Forum

To view the full agenda and the various reports, please visit Board Docs.

Election of Chair and Vice-Chair

Reports include:

  • Superintendent - Report
  • Board Members - (report not available yet)
  • EACC - Update
  • Student Board Member - (report not available yet)
  • Deputy Superintendent - Student Service PBIS; Bill in Congress
  • Instruction Report - Freshman Seminar (report not available yet)
  • Supporting Services Report - CIP Update
  • Finance Report - Budget Update (report not available yet)
  • Human Resources Report - (report not available yet)

Action Items:

New Business:

  • Board Meeting times
  • North Point stadium usage fees