Call to Order
The regular meeting of the Board of Trustees of School District No. 26, Lockwood Schools, Yellowstone County, was duly held in the Board Room, 1932 U.S. Highway 87, Billings, Montana, on Tuesday, October 11, 2005. Chairperson Stroebe called the meeting to order at approximately 7:00 p.m. and led those present in the Pledge of Allegiance.
The following trustees and officers were present: Trustees: Teresa Stroebe, Greg Bochy, Gayle Walker, Barbara Forrester Frank, Tim Trafford, Thomas Jones and Susanne Vinton, Superintendent Eileen Johnson and District Clerk Diane Brook. Thomas Jones arrived at 7:22 p.m.
Staff members present were: Mike Bowman, Dave DeBoer, Mike Sullivan, Art Anderson, Pam Richau, Nikki Alt, Diane Slagsvold, Crystal Arneson, and Harold Hagen.
Registered guests present were Evelyn Pyburn of Yellowstone County News and Pam Malek.
Mrs. Stroebe welcomed visitors and advised the following:
If you wish to speak to the Board of Trustees at this meeting about agenda
items, please complete a form and give it to the Board Chair or the clerk.
Any person present, who wishes to do so at this point in the agenda,
may address the board or raise any question about public school district
matters or governing policies. No discussion of personnel or individual
students is permitted at this time. A limit of three minutes is placed
on each speaker. Persons who want more time may make arrangements
to be placed on a future agenda.
PUBLIC WRITTEN REQUEST TO BE PLACED ON THIS AGENDA
APPROVAL OF MINUTES AND PAYMENT OF BILLS AND WAGES
The Board received a copy of the summary of paid bills by account. The summary included a detailed statement of all expenditures of money with the name of the person or business to which payment is made, showing the service rendered or goods furnished.
Greg Bochy moved to approve the September 13, 2005 regular board meeting minutes as presented and the payment of all bills and wages and extracurricular bills. Sue Vinton seconded the motion. Sue Vinton, Teresa Stroebe, Gayle Walker, Greg Bochy, Tim Trafford, and Barbara Forrester Frank voted yes; the motion passed six to zero.
EDUCATION AND BUSINESS
A. Requests for Four Students to Attend Yellowstone Academy District #58
Supt. Johnson recommended approval of four requests for students to attend Yellowstone Academy District No. 58 (Yellowstone Boys and Girls Ranch) for H.O., M.D., M.E., and S.B. Trustees were advised that funding for these placements will be from the Tuition Fund, which is a non-voted levy. Mrs. Johnson advised that one of these students has already returned to our campus, so there will be only a partial payment of nine days.
Eileen said this is the same process that we have done before. Tuition is paid by the tuition fund and all four students have been there previously.
Tim Trafford voted to approve the out-of-district placements at Yellowstone Academy District No. 58 for all four students. Greg Bochy seconded the motion. Sue Vinton, Teresa Stroebe, Gayle Walker, Greg Bochy, Tim Trafford, and Barbara Forrester Frank voted yes; the motion passed six to zero.
A. Hire Paraprofessionals
Supt. Johnson advised in the agenda packet that there may be additional recommendations for paraprofessionals, if the hiring process is complete prior to the meeting.
Mrs. Johnson recommended hiring Kristi Lynn Handlos as a Title I Paraprofessional. Eileen added her recommendation of Joly Boheman as a Special Education Paraprofessional, noting that interviews had finished earlier in the day.
Trustees asked if both individuals had fingerprint background checks. Eileen answered affirmatively.
Tim Trafford moved to hire Kristi Lynn Handlos and Joly Boheman for the above-mentioned paraprofessional positions. Gayle Walker seconded the motion. Sue Vinton, Teresa Stroebe, Gayle Walker, Greg Bochy, Tim Trafford, and Barbara Forrester Frank voted aye; the motion passed six to zero.
Primary Principal Mike Bowman introduced Chris Arneson to the Board. She is a certified paraprofessional in the pre-school and primary special education classrooms.
B. Updated List of Substitutes
The updated list of substitutes was attached to the agenda for Board perusal and approval. Eileen advised all had finished the application process. Barbara moved to accept the list as presented. Sue Vinton seconded the motion. Trustee Frank asked if all substitutes had been fingerprint background checked. Eileen said yes.
Chairperson Stroebe read aloud the names of the substitutes to be hired: Nancy Walker, Judith Lacy, Marie Jaumotte, Katherine Heitzenrater, and Stacie Fread.
Sue Vinton, Teresa Stroebe, Gayle Walker, Greg Bochy, Tim Trafford, and Barbara Forrester Frank voted yes; the motion passed six to zero.
C. Basketball Coach Hiring
The trustees were advised by Supt. Johnson that the position of seventh grade girls’ basketball coach has not yet been filled. Mr. Osborne will take this job with board approval. The position has been posted, and no one else applied for the position.
Tim Trafford said last year when the extracurricular coaching list came out, Rob was listed as a coach. At that time, there was some board discussion as to whether it was a good idea for the Athletic Director to also coach. There is no district policy concerning this situation. Trustee Trafford advised that last year Rob ended up taking one of the coaching positions.
Greg Bochy moved to hire Rob Osborne as seventh grade girls’ basketball coach. Tim Trafford seconded the motion.
It was noted that they try to loop seventh and eighth grades coaches if possible. This allows for some coaching continuity for the athletes. Trustee Gayle Walker asked who coaches eighth grade girls’ basketball.
Mrs. Johnson responded that Randall Rice is the eighth grade girls’ basketball coach.
Extracurricular pay was briefly discussed. Eileen said she thought finding coaches was more about someone having the time rather than the pay. She advised that Lockwood’s coaching pay is comparable to that of other schools in our area.
Sue Vinton, Teresa Stroebe, Gayle Walker, Greg Bochy, Tim Trafford, and Barbara Forrester Frank voted yes; the motion passed six to zero.
Eileen advised that the Montana School Board’s Association had affirmed Policy No. 3236, Video/Audio Taping on School Buses, including the paragraph with notification wording.
REPORTS AND MISCELLANEOUS
Pam Richau, Technology Coordinator, provided her report at the meeting. She said teachers have been asking for more classroom computers. She advised that her report shows the number of active computers in the district; OPI had asked for this information with the fall report. Currently Lockwood Schools has 495 active computers; with 1,200 students we are getting a pretty good ratio.
Pam advised that they have a Compass Learning Trainer on campus for three days, October 11-13. She reported that the teachers are asking many questions, and the trainer has had some very good answers and help. Teachers are asking if it would be possible to see the trainer again in January or February.
Tim asked if Compass is starting to develop some patterns of information about students. Pam said right now it is developing more questions than patterns; but they have made a lot of progress. Mrs. Richau advised that they still have a lot to learn on how to manage it. Today they used the Odyssey Writer and this is new.
Tim asked how the implementation of Compass went. Pam said it went as planned and was pretty smooth. She said the two lab managers have been essential supporters, and they are assisting the teachers very well. Teachers and lab managers are both monitoring the students.
The Compass server did not go down even during the storms and power outages. It is a workhorse.
Pam said they learned today how to go around and click on the child’s folder and give one on one conferences talking about their progress.
Intermediate Principal Dave DeBoer said he thinks the Compass labs are phenomenal. He asked the lab manager to track the teachers coming into the lab. It is without question the busiest room in the intermediate. Recently they had 16 students in at 7:30-8:00 just because they wanted to work.
Mr. DeBoer advised that they are able to use Compass reading and math tests for baseline information for placement of incoming students.
Dave re-capped his report including the five positive changes for 2005-06.
Middle School Principal Mike Sullivan said he had nothing to add to his report. He noted that two middle school math teachers, Carrie Schmidt and Jennifer Riehl, are participating with School District 2 in a grant. Both of our teachers grew tremendously through their participation; this was documented by a pre-test and post-test administered to grant participants. Mr. Sullivan also said that Lockwood students scored the highest (percentage-wise) of the groups that participated in the grant.
Primary Principal Mike Bowman pointed out the pictures of the science room in his report. He advised that the Billings Gazette is doing an article about it. Mr. Bowman said offering science in this manner at the primary level is cutting edge and novel. He doesn’t think any other schools in Montana have this. Mike commented that Mrs. Rottrup is a very enthusiastic and talented teacher.
Tim Trafford said that the board is pleased with how she is handling the Primary Science Room.
It was also reported that the Billings Symphony is doing an outreach program for Lockwood School students in Grades K-5. They will perform Cartoon Capers here on January 27, 2006. Mrs. Johnson said Director Anne Harrigan had visited the campus today. We have two staff members who play in the symphony, Brent Lipp and Lynette Larson.
A report showing Building Reserve expenditures during this past year and the five-year plan was briefly reviewed. It was noted that the costs for the storage building were not showing on the report.
Art Anderson, Facilities Director, advised that construction on the storage building will start next week. He said the contract work with the attorney concluded last Friday, and he has called the contractor to come in and sign the contract.
Trustee Sue Vinton asked if the contractor is concerned about starting construction this late in the year. Art said no.
Mr. Anderson said there had been some tree problems from the storm. They are working on getting it cleaned up. They are also firing up the boilers to get ready for winter.
Chairperson Stroebe asked for re-iteration of the cost of the storage building. Art said the bid was for $42,250. She also asked about the cost of the science room. Supt. Johnson said the costs for the room were included with the plumbing, electrical, carpeting, and other expenditures identified in the Building Reserve Fund report.
Trustee Trafford said his interest in requesting the Building Reserve Funds report was to determine the longevity for this fund. This plan illustrates that we have money for long term. Tim said if we are asking for money either for Building Reserve or Bond Debt Funds, we need to show that we are conservative and use the money well.
Tim said the facility has never looked better than it does now, and the courtyard is really nice.
Supt. Johnson said the curriculum item was inadvertently omitted from the agenda. Don Christman, Curriculum Director, had submitted a report with the agenda. Mr. Christman was not at the board meeting because he was at a meeting in Helena.
All trustees said they had reviewed the Curriculum and Activities reports on their own.
Eileen mentioned that Exxon had made a donation to help with purchasing graphing calculators for students. She said she had nothing else to add to her report.
OLD BUSINESS OR FOLLOW UP INFORMATION
A. Access Naming Process
Mrs. Johnson advised the following: The name recommended by the students is Prickly Pear Lane with Stonehaven Trail and Skyline Trail as second and third choices. This will go through various departments of Yellowstone County government before approval. I will keep you informed of the process.
Eileen informed those present that the first two names chosen were rejected, so the students are working on it again. Yellowstone County advised that they do not want anything even similar to an existing street name. The students will e-mail Janelle at Yellowstone County with more suggestions. They are looking through the existing lists of names. Eileen explained that having the entire eighth grade involved with the street naming process would not work, so the Gifted and Talented students are working on this.
B. October 17 Facilities Meeting Information
The superintendent showed her Power Point presentation for board review; she had developed the presentation for the October 17, 2005, Facilities Meeting. Eileen handed out the hard copy of her presentation.
Mrs. Johnson advised that Harold Hagen has volunteered to be a facilitator for the October 17th meeting. The meeting will be a special board meeting and must be conducted as such. Eileen said that after the meeting is opened the trustees can turn it over to Harold if they so choose.
Supt. Johnson distributed information that D.A. Davidson had provided regarding bonding.
Eileen advised that these are scenarios and possible costs. Bonding capacity for the Lockwood School District is 13 million dollars.
The trustees discussed preparation for the meeting, anticipating questions patrons may have, and the role of the facilitator.
Harold Hagen explained the process he used to facilitate meetings in the past. He said normally the decision-making body identifies the problem or challenge to be discussed. He advised that the role of the facilitator is to focus the people on the identified problem and provide the opportunity for a brainstorming session. The decision-making body may then choose workable alternative solutions for further study. They do not generally arrive at a decision at one session.
Trustees suggested these additions to Eileen’s presentation: providing a map of the Lockwood School campus; including the information that the fire chief had said that he would allow no more additions to the existing buildings, due to safety concerns; asking this questions: How can we as a community effectively prepare for future growth in our school?
Teresa suggested all trustees be aware of their obligations and limitations, and that the board do more listening than talking at the October 17th meeting.
Tim Trafford suggested providing a link on our website with results of the meeting. Eileen said she would get a link on the Lockwood School website entitled: Future Growth Plans.
C. Discussion of Changing Regular Meeting Day
At the September meeting the Trustees started a discussion of changing meeting nights at the request of Trustee Thomas Jones. The Trustees asked that it be placed on this agenda for further discussion. Attached to the agenda was a copy of the policy that would be amended if a change was made.
Thomas said that his job constraints make it difficult for him to get to the meetings by 7:00 p.m. on Tuesdays. He also advised that the second Tuesday of the month is PTA skate night also. Mr. Jones said he doesn’t want his work schedule problems to cause imposition to the board.
Eileen offered the opinion that trustees have changed many times; every two or three years. She believes it is important to leave the meetings the same for the public.
Thomas said he would like to keep it open for discussion. There was no motion at this time.
Chairperson Stroebe said she could work with Thomas and try to re-arrange the agenda if needed.
A. Lockwood Community Steering Committee Meeting
Teresa attended the last Steering Committee meeting. She said the October 17 special board meeting was announced there. She suggested other board members attend those meetings if possible. Wyeth Friday of Yellowstone City-County Planning is working on a plan document.
MQEC had a meeting at the Depot with Legislators. The invitation was extended to all present and former trustees. The Legislators provided information and received input.
Superintendent Johnson advised that the MQEC group had developed an educationally relevant plan. She said it was interesting to sit in a room with all of these people and they all have the same vision and focus. Eileen said if legislators could work with the MQEC plan it would be a big help.
B. Set Day for Christmas Luncheon
After discussion, the staff Christmas luncheon provided by the Board of Trustees was set for Wednesday, December 7, 2005.
There will be a special meeting on October 17, 2005, at 6:30 p.m. in the Blue Room, and the next regular meeting will be at 7:00 p.m. on November 8, 2005, in the Board Room.
Thomas Jones moved to adjourn the meeting at 9:15 p.m. Greg Bochy seconded the motion. Teresa Stroebe, Greg Bochy, Gayle Walker, Thomas Jones, Tim Trafford, Barbara Forrester Frank, and Susanne Vinton voted aye. The motion passed seven to zero.
Teresa Stroebe, Chairperson Diane M. Brook, District Clerk