Proceedings of the Board of Trustees
Lockwood School District No. 26
Yellowstone County, Billings, MT
Regular Meeting of March 14, 2006
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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, March 14, 2006. Chairperson Stroebe called the meeting to order at 7:01 p.m. and led those present in the Pledge of Allegiance.

The following trustees and officers were present: Trustees: Teresa Stroebe, Thomas Jones, Sue Vinton, Gayle Walker, Barbara Forrester Frank and Tim Trafford, Superintendent Eileen Johnson and District Clerk Diane Brook. Greg Bochy was absent.

Staff members present were: Mike Bowman, Dave DeBoer, Mike Sullivan, Art Anderson, Pam Richau, Don Christman, Johanna Freivalds, Teresa Marchant, and Diane Slagsvold.

Registered guests present were Evelyn Pyburn, Chris Malenowsky, Becky Malenowsky, Becky Shay, Stacy Benner, Valerie Egan, Greg Contreraz, Pam Malek, and Holly Sather.

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 COMMENT

None

PUBLIC WRITTEN REQUEST TO BE PLACED ON THIS AGENDA

A letter was received from parents requesting to be part of the library material selection. Chairperson Stroebe asked those present at what point they wanted to discuss this issue. They responded that they would wait to speak until the consideration of the Agenda Item 3D, Library Curriculum.

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.

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Tim Trafford moved to approve the February 14, 2006 regular board meeting minutes, the March 6, 2006, and the March 7, 2006 special board meeting minutes as presented and the payment of all bills and wages and extracurricular bills. Thomas Jones seconded the motion. Teresa Stroebe, Thomas Jones, Sue Vinton, Tim Trafford, Barbara Forrester Frank and Gayle Walker voted yes; the motion passed six to zero.

CORRESPONDENCE

Tim Trafford read aloud the thank-you note received from the family of Travis Klapmeier.

A. Letter from Parents Requesting to be Part of Library Material Selection

A letter from Mr. and Mrs. Malenowsky was attached to the agenda. Teresa read aloud the letter from Chris and Becky Malenowsky. They will address this issue when trustees consider Item 3D.

Mrs. Johnson had advised that the recommendations from the committee have her approval.

EDUCATION AND BUSINESS

A. Resolution for Technology Levy

The superintendent recommended that the Board put a Technology Levy before the voters at the election to be held May 2, 2006. The resolution for the election was prepared by Diane Brook and a copy was attached to the agenda.

Eileen explained instead of making it a “forever” levy, a five-year levy, at $75,000 per year was her recommendation.

Trustee Tim Trafford said the Technology Department does a good job, and he feels it is important to have a vehicle to continue updating technology.

Eileen advised that she was told the reason the Technology Levy request had failed previously was due to it being a forever levy. That is the rationale for her recommendation of five years.

Gayle noted that if the levy fails, purchasing technology equipment or technology wages would have to come from general fund.

Eileen said that is true, however she advised only a small amount of wages would be paid from the levy. She thought no more than ten percent of it would be spent for salaries.

Trustee Thomas Jones said he is impressed with our school’s cutting edge technology including compass. Technology is our future. If our kids excel at it, and they have a good basis; they will excel in the business world.

Eileen said Pam Richau, Technology Coordinator, has done a really nice job with connectivity. She also mentioned that the board took a bold step last year with purchasing and implementing compass.

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After the discussion, Tim Trafford moved to adopt the attached resolution to call for a Technology Levy for $75,000 each year for five years. Thomas Jones seconded the motion. Tim Trafford, Sue Vinton, Barbara Forrester Frank, Teresa Stroebe, Gayle Walker, and Thomas Jones voted aye; the motion passed six to zero.

Pam Richau advised of plans to conduct a Technology Night for students and parents this spring.

B. Resolution for School Election

Diane Brook gave a brief explanation about the election. She advised if the election is not required due to their being an equal or lesser number of candidates to the open trustee positions, then the election would be cancelled and the trustee(s) who had filed would be elected by acclamation.

After a brief discussion, Tim Trafford moved to adopt the attached resolution to call for a Trustee Election for two trustee positions. Gayle Walker seconded the motion. Tim Trafford, Sue Vinton, Barbara Forrester Frank, Teresa Stroebe, Gayle Walker, and Thomas Jones voted aye; the motion passed six to zero.

C. Future Growth of Lockwood Schools – Choosing an Architectural Firm

Four architects made presentations to the Trustees on March 6 and 7. A decision to choose one of the firms to work with the Board on reviewing and making recommendations for future space for Lockwood Schools is now before the Board of Trustees. The firms are Schutz Foss, JGA, Bauer Group, and CTA.

The trustees briefly reviewed a report prepared by Art Anderson. These issues were noted: The need for referendum support and engineering support is very important to architect selection. Phasing will have to be included in any future planning; all of this would be part of a master plan as we move forward.

Teresa noted that Art had done a good job with his report that itemizes six points. (Copy attached).

Tim said the thing that stuck out in his mind was: We may need to back up, and we shouldn’t be surprised if we don’t end up where we thought we were going to be. He felt having professional assistance would be very helpful. Mr. Trafford also said, “Every day that goes on; we just knocked off more square footage due to costs going up.”

Teresa asked if there was any more discussion about Art’s six points; then she read them aloud.

Eileen said all four firms are very competent. The trustees need to feel comfortable with the firm they choose and feel it is a firm with which they can negotiate.

Mrs. Johnson advised about the cost of temporary classrooms. She said that a used (1991)12-classroom modular unit would cost about $1,000,000.

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Sue Vinton thought all four firms did a good job. She wanted to know how much it would cost to contract with one of these firms.

Art said two of the four submitted costs in the neighborhood of $40,000 for information and referendum support. He feels that number is negotiable. Art also advised that we would then have a master plan, drawings, schematics, etc. from having an architectural firm. Quite a bit is developed during this stage that is valuable and can be taken forward.

Sue asked what would happen to that investment if the bond does not pass.

Art responded that it would be up to the board as to how they move forward. There would probably be some additional costs in trying to run a second bond election.

Gayle asked Art if he would be comfortable working with any of these firms, and did he feel they would value his input. Art said he could work with any of them.

Teresa said we have been actively working with the community; will they build on what we have done or start over. Art said the information and data we have at this point would be used.

Eileen advised she thought there was a consensus that the board was not going to go forward with a bond election in June. Architects’ timelines indicated that June was too soon.

Since Thomas Jones had only seen the presentations by Schutz Foss and JGA, he asked about the presentations by Bauer Group and CTA. The other trustees summarized the presentations for Thomas.

Teresa noted that Bauer Group had done Orchard School. They partnered with an out-of-state firm for some of the work. Tim said they had some great ideas.

CTA did have some ideas about putting the middle school up closer, and they showed different configurations ideas that hadn’t been shown before.

Eileen said Art had sent them tremendous details. It is important to consider who you want to work with the public.

Tim felt that JGA had really done their homework.

Sue said she felt JGA was the strongest in the referendum support.

Teresa like the calendars CTA had presented.

Gayle said JGA was very personable.

Tom said Laurel is very happy with JGA so far.

Sue said she has been going back and forth between two firms all week.

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Sue moved to direct Eileen to contact JGA and request a firmer figure to lead us through the process. Thomas Jones seconded.

Tim said he would prefer a motion to engage the services with the idea that Eileen and Art will negotiate with them.

Eileen said it would all be brought back to the board with contracts drawn up by our lawyer.

Art said he had spoken with each group since the presentations. In subsequent conversations they felt their fee could be reduced. He and Eileen would present them with the scope of duty.

Sue said she is a little commitment phobic about spending the money.

Barbara asked about an agreement to reduce costs. Art said a bargaining point could be that they would be hired for a second attempt should one be necessary, and the only costs to the district would be for printing, supplies, etc.

Trustee Sue Vinton amended her motion as follows: I move to direct the superintendent to engage the services of JGA to take us through the bond process.

Teresa asked if there were any objections to the amendment. Seeing none, she asked for a second. Thomas Jones seconded the motion.

Gayle asked if Eileen and Art are comfortable with JGA. Eileen and Art said yes.

Thomas Jones, Tim Trafford, Teresa Stroebe, Barbara Forrester Frank, Gayle Walker, and Sue Vinton voted yes. The motion passed six to zero.

Thomas Jones had to leave at 8:01 p.m.

D. Library Curriculum

Superintendent Johnson recommended approval of the Library Curriculum proposals submitted. She noted that there is also a Library policy as part of the Library proposal, and it is included under policy development. Eileen said the policy and curriculum both weave together.

Mr. Don Christman presented the latest work from his committees on curriculum development. He explained the process they used for development of the library curriculum document. Don said they had brought the curriculum up to the expectations and standards of the state of Montana. There will be a final professional edit. The librarians did a wonderful job and really did their homework.

Eileen reviewed the recommended policy and advised that it is first reading. She advised that Item 5 differs from what they had previously. The change now has a committee that will review the challenge. They will not be from the building involved in the challenge. It gives a broader spectrum to a challenge with more people involved.

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Mrs. Johnson commented after the regular May board meeting the policy would be in effect as the three readings would have been completed.

Trustee Trafford moved to accept the library curriculum as presented. Gayle Walker seconded the motion. Tim Trafford was on the committee; he said it was magic. Don thanked Tim and other board members for their work with the curriculum committees.

Librarian Diane Slagsvold added that there is data showing strong correlation between a strong library curriculum and test scores.

Trustee Barbara Forrester Frank said, as a teacher, it is easy to see that this curriculum is well-done.

Sue said it is complete; it is also very easy to understand, and it makes sense.

Barbara Forrester Frank, Tim Trafford, Sue Vinton, Gayle Walker, and Teresa Stroebe voted yes; the motion passed five to zero.

In order to facilitate input from guests, the next item considered was Item 5C, Policy No 2308, School Library Collection Development.

C. First reading on School Library Collection Development Policy No. 2308

Supt. Johnson noted that this policy came out of the curricular development process. It puts recommendations in the hands of more people, if a re-consideration is requested. She recommended approval of this policy.

Gayle Walker moved to adopt Policy No. 2308 on first reading. Tim Trafford seconded the motion.

Chair Stroebe asked if there was discussion concerning this item.

Becky Malenowsky asked to speak. She said she had two questions; she advised that they had a community meeting at Dairy Queen regarding the library issue.

She asked if Paragraph No. 2, General Collection Management and Development Policies, meant that parents cannot check out books. Middle School Librarian Johanna Freivalds responded that the librarians’ primary responsibility is to students and staff. However, parents are allowed to check out books. It was noted that this was also in previous policy.

Mrs. Malenowsky questioned Paragraph 5. They had concerns about how the members, especially parents, of the Reconsideration Review Committee would be chosen. If they are handpicked, how would that be a fair unbiased committee?

Tim said they would still have the opportunity to go to the board.

Becky asked, “How will the committee members be picked? Eileen responded members would be chosen from volunteer employees from the buildings; these committees are set up at the beginning of the year. They want unbiased and not hand-picked.

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Eileen said maybe they could go to the PTA and ask them for parent volunteers and they could be randomly chosen by drawing straws. Eileen said she could talk to PTA and ask them. The Policy can be amended to include the way the volunteers would be selected. It was also suggested that volunteers could be recruited from the Family Resource Center and Project Love. Eileen said maybe they could put several choices in policy.

Barbara suggested that the board ask for people to sign up at the beginning of the year. Eileen said maybe the FRC could handle this, and that would take it out of her hands.

Mrs. Malenowsky asked if the committee could have three parents instead of one, because there are three school employees. Eileen advised that the library is in place for students and school personnel are aware of the curriculum and policies. She said they could add one more parent. It was noted that the committee makes a recommendation to the superintendent; they do not make the final decision.

Sue said she doesn’t want an adversarial situation. She feels every voice would be heard in terms of a review of material. She has faith in our staff, and that every voice would be heard.

Tim said two parents might not be a bad idea because it would make the committee have an odd number of members. That would be a better way for a consensus to be reached.

Barb suggested that the policy state that the committee does not make the final decision; their recommendation is brought forward.

Tim suggested these changes: 1) Two parents would be selected from a sign-up list managed by the Family Resource Center. 2) Wording in policy that the job of the committee is to make a recommendation. (It was determined that there is already wording in the draft policy that states the committee makes a recommendation to the superintendent; it is on Page 3 of Policy No.2308, Section 5, Paragraph 4.)

Teresa Stroebe asked Supt. Johnson to note the above-mentioned changes in red with strikethrough text where needed. Eileen said she would present them that way with the second reading of the policy at the next meeting.

Gayle Walker amended her motion. She moved to adopt Policy No. 2308 as presented with this change to Page 3, Section 5, Paragraph 2: two parents will be selected from a volunteer list managed by the Family Resource Center.

Lloyd Gerber spoke from the audience. He asked for a definition of “affected person” on Page 4, Paragraph 1. Eileen said it is the person that made the challenge.

There was no other public comment on first reading.

Chair Stroebe asked if there was any objection to Gayle Walker’s amendment to her motion. No one objected. She called for the vote. Barbara Forrester Frank, Tim Trafford, Sue Vinton, Gayle Walker, and Teresa Stroebe voted yes; the motion passed five to zero.

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Becky Malenowsky read a prepared statement; a copy of which is attached. They would like to have a committee formed to review books as they come in. They would be particularly looking for sexuality explicit materials.

Tim said he is not against looking at the idea, but there could be problems.

Eileen said they had an agreement that Mrs. Malenowsky was getting a packing list.

Valerie Egan said the policy is great, but it doesn’t address the issue of a parent not knowing what books are coming into the library.

Tim said you are asking to establish a committee from now and forever; that is asking a lot.

Eileen asked, “What would this committee do? Would you contact all parents in the community?”

Greg Contreraz said they want to see materials as they come in..

Pam Malek suggested that the list of newly purchased books could be put out in the newsletter, and then it would be up to parent to look for the books. Then they can take it to the committee, if they have a problem.

Tim doesn’t agree that a permanently established committee is needed.

Sue wanted to know the purpose of the new books committee; is it to review the books or to do something about it the books.

Lloyd Gerber asked, “How are you going to let us know when new books come in?”

Eileen asked the librarians about how they could provide a list. They advised that publishing the list would be pages long. They said putting the list at Family Resource Center would be doable.

Kelly Gerber said she wants to try to reiterate where their group is coming from. We are concerned that these few books get into the library. How do we protect our children from checking out that book and reading it before we even know it is here? She fears that they will be discouraged subtly from going to the library.

Tim wants to know if having the list at FRC would work. Kelly said it might be a start.

Teresa said we are trying to work through this with policy. We can come to a consensus through policy. We will need to address your concerns via policy.

Barbara said we appreciate that you are concerned, and we don’t want you to be discouraged. We will do our best. She advised the logistics of waiting to shelve books until they were reviewed would be extremely difficult. She also commented that when sections are created in the library, it can cause problems.

Holly Sather asked how many times a year the school gets shipments of books.

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The librarians and superintendent responded that it is ongoing all year.

Chair Stroebe advised that this policy item will be on the agenda for the next two months.

E. P.E./Health Enhancement Curriculum

This item was considered at 9:15 p.m. Don Christman reviewed the process of the committee with the board. He said they had simplified and streamlined the curriculum. It is aligned at state level for Grades 4 and 8. It is a living document; it relates to the wellness policy and tying physical activity into everyday routine. Mr. Christman said teachers are already doing this.

Barbara Forrester Frank moved to accept the P.E./Health Enhancement Curriculum as presented. Tim Trafford seconded the motion. Barbara Forrester Frank, Tim Trafford, Sue Vinton, Gayle Walker, and Teresa Stroebe voted yes; the motion passed five to zero.

F. Review of Membership in MQEC

Attached to the board packet was information from MQEC stating reasons they feel the terms set down by the Court’s orders have not been met. Superintendent Johnson recommended that the Board of Trustees remain members of MQEC and the group action. The assessments for continued membership are $2,000 for this year and $3,000 for the upcoming year.

Teresa informed those present that MQEC is the group that has gone to courts to get adequate funding for Montana schools. It was noted that Lockwood joined MQEC four years ago. The summary on Page 8 was briefly reviewed; it says all of the points in the lawsuit have not been met.

Tim Trafford moved to pay the dues and continue membership. Gayle Walker seconded the motion.

Eileen commented that there is a very diverse membership including: MEA, MTSBA, Rural School Districts, individuals, and large districts.

Barbara Forrester Frank, Tim Trafford, Sue Vinton, Gayle Walker, and Teresa Stroebe voted yes; the motion passed five to zero.

PERSONNEL

A. Updated Substitute List

Barbara Forrester Frank moved to hire substitute teachers listed: Pamela Barrett, Stacia Courtney, Nicole Kocab, Kelly Nemetz, Christy Wells, and Sharron Zulevich. Sue Vinton seconded the motion.

Barbara asked if they had all been fingerprint background checked. Eileen responded yes.

Teresa Stroebe, Sue Vinton, Tim Trafford, Barbara Forrester Frank and Gayle Walker voted yes; the motion passed five to zero.

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POLICY

A. Third Reading on Policy No. 8450 – Automatic External Defibrillators

Third and final reading of this new policy proposal from MTSBA is for districts to have in place when defibrillators are made available. Eileen advised that they have been discussing this with Carol Blank, RN our school nurse. She will work on securing assistance for training. The placement of AED’s for public use has become quite common in the past few years.

Trustee Trafford moved to adopt Policy No. 8450 on third reading. Trustee Frank seconded the motion.

Teresa hopes we can get a defibrillator in the future.

Teresa Stroebe, Sue Vinton, Tim Trafford, Barbara Forrester Frank and Gayle Walker voted yes; the motion passed five to zero.

B. First Reading on Wellness Policy No. 2510

This will be first reading on Wellness Policy #2510. Eileen advised that this is a required policy for all schools that participate in the Federal Breakfast and Lunch Program. Montana School Board Policy personnel developed most of the language. Supt. Johnson recommended approval.

Eileen said we have already eliminated pop and we are having recess before lunch. We have a full time nurse, and we do a health screening for staff. Don Christman also worked through this issue with the Health Enhancement Curriculum Committee.

Barbara Forrester Frank moved to adopt Policy No. 2510 on first reading. Gayle Walker seconded the motion. Tim asked if it is still acceptable for a student to bring cupcakes to school for a special treat. Eileen said it was suggested that parties and cupcakes be eliminated, but we still want a warm caring environment.

Don said they are asking that food not be used as a reward; they suggest cutting back from once a week to once a month. They are trying to have more nutritional snacks.

Teresa Stroebe, Sue Vinton, Tim Trafford, Barbara Forrester Frank and Gayle Walker voted yes; the motion passed five to zero.

REPORTS AND MISCELLANEOUS

A. Curriculum

Don said we have 751 students starting tests on Monday and everyone is ready to go. He noted that next month there will be four more curriculum rewrites.

Sharon Harris was congratulated on receiving the “One Class at a Time” award.

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B. Technology

Pam Richau said installing the spam filter has been problematic, but they are working through it. When it was running, it showed that over sixty percent of e-mail coming into the district is spam. She is still working on getting it up and running. She wants to show the board how to control their own spam and do white-listing at an upcoming meeting.

C. Facilities

Art Anderson gave his report earlier and had nothing to add.

Tim asked if they are using the new storage shed. Art said yes, as a matter of fact, they are building the St. Patrick’s Day Float in the shed.

D. Activities

The activities report was distributed at the meeting.

E. Principals

Primary Principal Mike Bowman reported that he and Don Christman had attended the Title 1 conference.

He distributed a draft copy Student Handbook for next year. He advised that they had made two additions one on Page 17 because parents had asked if they would delineate the policy on latex, and one on Page 9 about field trips.

He is hopeful that it can be adopted at the April meeting. The directories will be updated over the summer when staffing changes have been completed.

Mike also reported that first and second graders went on field trips to Alberta Bair, and they really enjoyed them.

Intermediate Principal Dave DeBoer reported that each year Exxon Mobil pays for 200 teachers to attend a week-long science/math workshop in Fairfax Virginia. This year three Lockwood teachers will be going. Dave also reported that the PTA had donated $500 for snacks for testing week.

Don Christman and the Board of Trustees thanked the PTA for the help.

Middle School Principal Mike Sullivan reported about Math Pi Day. Shane from IGA donated 100 pies for the students. He is always very supportive of the school. Mike also commented that Lockwood will have its first marching band in the St. Patrick’s Day Parade.

Mike Bowman advised that the Primary School had been awarded the Best Teacher-Para Team in the state. The team consists of: Stephanie Miller, Burlene Metz, Cathy Bakker and Shari Widdicombe. The Office of Public Instruction gives the award, and the team traveled to Missoula to receive the award.

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F. Superintendent

Eileen had no written report. She informed the board that last year the district provided summer classes with Title 1 money. Because the district had made AYP, we are not eligible to receive the Title 1 grant for summer school this year, so there will be no summer school this summer. Mrs. Johnson also advised that our Title 1 funds have gone from about $300,000 about six years ago to $140,000 this year.

She also informed the trustees that Congressman Rehberg had come and talked to the students about Uganda. Mr. Rehberg had seen the article about some Lockwood classes that had made books for students in Uganda, and he wanted to visit them.

OLD BUSINESS OR FOLLOW UP INFORMATION

None

TRUSTEE REPORTS

None

NEXT MEETING

The next regular meeting will be Tuesday, April 11, 2006 at 7:00 p.m.

ADJOURN

Tim Trafford moved to adjourn the meeting at 10:00 p.m. Gayle Walker seconded the motion. Teresa Stroebe, Sue Vinton, Tim Trafford, Barbara Forrester Frank and Gayle Walker voted yes; the motion passed five to zero.

 

Teresa

Respectively Submitted,

___________________________      _____________________________
Teresa Stroebe, Chairperson             Diane M. Brook, District Clerk

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