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, September 12, 2006. Chairperson Stroebe called the meeting to order at 7:05 p.m. and led those present in the Pledge of Allegiance.
The following trustees and officers were present: Trustees: Teresa Stroebe, Sue Vinton, Thomas Jones, Becky Malenowsky, Greg Bochy and Tim Trafford, Superintendent Eileen Johnson and District Clerk Diane Brook. Barbara Forrester Frank was absent.
Staff members present were: Art Anderson, Mike Bowman, Mike Sullivan, Dave DeBoer, Pam Richau, Johanna Freivalds, Barb Asleson, Sharon Harris, Judy Guenther, Andrea Hofmann, Rexene Tilley, and Don Christman.
Registered guests present were: Merrideth Von Holdt, Robert Guenther, Alex Allen, Evelyn Pyburn, Stacy Benner, 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. Thomas Jones moved to approve the minutes of the August 16, 2006 Facilities Committee Meeting, the August 8, 2006, Regular Board Meeting, and the Special Board Meeting held on August 1, 2006 and the bills as presented.
Becky Malenowsky seconded the motion. Teresa Stroebe, Tim Trafford, Greg Bochy, Thomas Jones, Sue Vinton, and Becky Malenowsky voted yes; the motion passed six to zero.
A. Letter of Resignation from Bill Miller
Supt. Johnson advised that Bill Miller retired after 41 years with the district as a teacher and a maintenance worker. Board Chair Stroebe read the letter aloud. Tim Trafford moved to accept Bill Miller’s resignation/retirement. Greg Bochy seconded the motion. Teresa wished him well and expressed gratitude for his many, many years of service here. Teresa Stroebe, Tim Trafford, Greg Bochy, Thomas Jones, Sue Vinton, and Becky Malenowsky voted yes; the motion passed six to zero. Eileen advised that he had been given a reception on his last day of work.
B. Letter of Resignation from Brenda Senne
Teresa read aloud the letter. Eileen advised that this was a release of contract. Sue Vinton moved to release Brenda Senne from contract. Thomas Jones seconded the motion. Teresa Stroebe, Tim Trafford, Greg Bochy, Thomas Jones, Sue Vinton, and Becky Malenowsky voted aye; the motion passed six to zero.
C. Notification of Resignation from Kendra Yasenak
Eileen advised that Kendra had gotten a teaching job in Alaska right after she had been hired as a paraprofessional for Lockwood; she had to leave immediately. Kendra had not yet signed her contract since she would have been on 90-day probation. Sue Vinton moved to accept Kendra Yasenak’s resignation. Becky Malenowsky seconded the motion. Teresa Stroebe, Tim Trafford, Greg Bochy, Thomas Jones, Sue Vinton, and Becky Malenowsky voted yes; the motion passed six to zero.
Trustee Tim Trafford read aloud the letter of thanks received from the American Red Cross. Trustee Sue Vinton said the residents of High Trail Road sincerely appreciated everything that Art Anderson and Eileen Johnson did during the fire. They helped provide food, ice and did many other things.
EDUCATION AND BUSINESS
A. Report from Teachers who Attended the ExxonMobil Conference in Virginia
Barb Asleson, Judy Guenther, and Sharon Harris were present to give a report on the math conference they attended in Virginia. The conference was paid for through the generosity of ExxonMobil. The teachers said they were treated extremely well; they were even greeted by the Vice President and Chairman of the Board of ExxonMobil. They said the workshops were spectacular and they are preparing information from the workshops to share at Open House and with ExxonMobil.
Barb Asleson said she was thrilled to get to meet Phil Mikelson and his wife. They were wonderful and so appreciative of the teachers. She advised that the workshops were about inquiry based learning.
Judy Guenther said she really enjoyed meeting Dr. Harris, the first black astronaut to walk in space. She talked about how he believed in himself, and his mother’s belief in him. Dr. Harris was an intercity kid, and he has now completed 26 years of school. He is a testimony to what teachers can do for kids by inspiring them to believe they can achieve.
Sharon Harris noted that it carries across all the curriculum areas and it is all interrelated. They learned some amazing questioning strategies. In all her years of teaching, it is the best experience she has ever had.
The teachers and the board thanked Pam Malek, who represents ExxonMobil, for the wonderful opportunity they had provided.
Intermediate Principal Dave DeBoer asked if the new staff members could be introduced at this point in the meeting, so they could leave if they so chose.
Board Chair Stroebe agreed to have the introductions.
Merredith Von Holdt, new School Resource Officer, was introduced to those present. She advised that she has been a patrol deputy for eight years, and that she will be serving Huntley School also. Ms. Von Holdt offered to assist by teaching safety to students and in other areas if needed.
Dave introduced Rexene Tilley, who is a paraprofessional in Mrs. Shanks’ Resource Room. He advised that Rexene started the day after Labor Day.
Andrea Hofmann introduced Alex Alan, who is her student teacher.
After the introductions Merredith Von Holdt, Rexene Tilley, Andrea Hofmann, Alex Alan, Sharon Harris, and Barb Asleson left the meeting.
B. Home School Request to Attend Part-Time
Supt. Johnson advised: We have a request from a home school family for their child to attend a middle school music class for one period a day. This amount of time would not qualify the district to receive ANB funding from the state. I would like to hear your discussion before making a final decision. If the student were to take a minimum of two classes, there would be one-quarter time enrollment and funding from the state pro-rated. ANB is calculated on aggregate hours of instruction. When our ANB is gathered in October and February, the amount of ANB (Annual Number Belonging) will generate the funding level for the 2007-2008 school year. Partial attendance in Grades K-5 would not be recommended at all. We need to have this discussion, and then a policy can be written to cover this for the future. The student is waiting for a decision to attend classes.
Eileen said discussion is important, so a policy can be developed for the future. It is totally a local issue. MTSBA has some guidelines for policies. The question that needs to be addressed is: What portion of a day should a home-schooled student be allowed to attend? Mrs. Johnson re-iterated the funding issue mentioned above. A student needs to be in attendance for at least two classes in order for the district to receive any funding from the state for them.
Eileen provided a sample policy from MTSBA. She advised that the action for tonight is to respond to the request for this particular student. Then the board can move forward with developing a policy, which will take three readings. Supt. Johnson advised the trustees about the fiscal impact that could happen if several students requested to attend just one class.
The policy issue is whether to allow homeschoolers to attend classes for less than one-hour per day.
This particular student wants to attend one band class at this point.
Sue Vinton asked about the impact. Eileen said it wouldn’t cause a problem in this particular large class.
Mrs. Johnson said it is important to establish criteria for accepting a home school student. If the Board of Trustees wants to do it on a case by case basis, they will need to have some criteria set up and a policy in place.
Teresa Stroebe said it would be important to let the parents know about the funding issue.
Thomas Jones commented that he had called some other schools about this issue, and none that he spoke to had a policy.
Becky Malenowsky said she thinks it is about the education of the kids, and it is important for Lockwood Schools to provide it.
Tim Trafford said he thinks this student should be allowed to attend. Trustee Trafford moved to accept this student and honor the parental request. Becky Malenowsky seconded the motion.
Middle School Principal Mike Sullivan advised that he has talked with the mother and he encouraged them to sign up for another class. They are considering it. He agreed that this student should be accepted.
Teresa said it is good public relations. It keeps communication open and lets them know that what we have to offer is important.
Supt. Johnson advised that this issue has been tried in court, and local school districts can make the policy of how they will accept home school students. This is very important because school funding comes from the ANB (Average Number Belonging) counts.
It was also noted that they may need to address how much participation a partially enrolled student can have in extracurricular activities, etc. These issues are usually more problematic at the high school level.
Greg Bochy called for the question. Teresa Stroebe, Tim Trafford, Greg Bochy, Thomas Jones, Sue Vinton, and Becky Malenowsky voted yes; the motion passed six to zero.
A draft policy for attendance of home schooled students will be on the agenda of the next regular meeting.
C. Extracurricular Account Changes
The recommended changes are:
1. Move Young Authors and Ink Cartridge into Extended Studies. These came
about through the Gifted and Talented Program.
2. Move Recycling into Student Council. This gets moved around with no
organization to own it.
Trustee Trafford asked if the funds would be eliminated or their balances would just be zeroed. Eileen said the funds would be eliminated, but they must be kept open with a zero balance through the end of this school year for auditing purposes.
Eileen advised that Young Authors has not been active for quite awhile. The money has been just sitting in that account.
Tim Trafford moved to move the funds per the above-mentioned request. Thomas Jones seconded the motion. Thomas Jones, Tim Trafford, Teresa Stroebe, Greg Bochy, Sue Vinton, and Becky Malenowsky voted aye; the motion passed six to zero.
The trustees decided to complete all hiring with one motion.
A. Hiring of Paraprofessionals
Superintendent Johnson recommended hiring the following people as paraprofessionals:
Jennifer Howe, Rochelle Martin, Heather Mencel, Joann Walsh, Winnette Rak, Thomas Ramlow, Rexene Tilley
Supt. Johnson recommended hiring Vern Dilulo as a maintenance worker for four hours per day, to fill the position vacated by Bill Miller. Vern will continue his work as custodian for the other four hours per day.
She also recommended that Wilhelm (Bill) Ruff be hired as a custodian for four hours per day, to fulfill the four hours vacated by Vern Dilulo.
Greg Bochy asked about pay for the maintenance/custodial position.
Eileen said she planned to average the pay for both positions and pay that amount for eight hours. She advised that we had no starting salary in the matrix for maintenance, but $12.00 per hour was determined to be a fair starting wage. The current custodial salary for Vern is $9.50 per hour. Averaging the two would result in $10.75 per hour.
Greg Bochy said he wanted to discuss the salary for this position further.
Chairman Stroebe advised that they would not discuss salary because it wasn’t on the agenda, but they can complete the hiring. If Greg wants to discuss salary for this position further, it should be put on the agenda for next month.
C. Hiring of Extracurricular Coaches/Sponsor
Supt. Johnson recommended hiring Vicki Balgua as dance sponsor, Mary Kay Rottrup and Vicki Balgua as 7th grade volleyball coaches, and Andrea Hofmann as 8th grade volleyball coach.
D. Hiring of Substitutes
The list of recommended substitutes was attached to the agenda for board perusal and approval.
Thomas Jones moved to hire paraprofessionals, coaches, maintenance and custodial workers and substitutes per the above or as listed. Sue Vinton seconded the motion. Teresa asked if there was any further discussion. Chair Stroebe asked if a fingerprint background check had been completed for everyone. Eileen said yes. Teresa Stroebe, Tim Trafford, Greg Bochy, Thomas Jones, Sue Vinton, and Becky Malenowsky voted yes; the motion passed six to zero.
None at this time.
REPORTS AND MISCELLANEOUS
Don said he had nothing to add to his written report. This is one of the lightest reports for the year. He advised that the state had no specific reason for the delay in reporting other than the state is moving to a data warehousing program.
Pam said she feels we are keeping up with technology and she is grateful for the Technology Levy. She provided a brief overview of how to use First Class Client for the trustees. She advised that Lockwood postings and professional development committee minutes are also housed in First Class. She offered support and instruction for anyone who wanted it.
There were no additions to the Athletic Director’s report.
Art said the summer crew worked very hard and they got a lot of things done. He just wanted to provide the list for the Board’s information. There was some discussion of the fire camp and the contract with Lockwood School. Eileen advised that Art was very helpful in providing information for the contract.
Primary Principal Mike Bowman reported that Grade K-2 student numbers are greater than last year. Kindergarten and first grade enrollments are really strong.
He also advised that our K-2 science program is exemplary as far as Montana is concerned; we may be the only one in the state. The Governor and the First Lady are very interested in science education. The First Lady and Pam Lambardi, education advisor, came and visited the K-2 Science classroom.
Mike distributed a sheet containing his thoughts as to why we started a K-2 science program.
Teresa said the visit by the First Lady was a very proud moment.
Eileen said the staff and students responded so well and it was a wonderful feeling.
Intermediate Principal Dave DeBoer said he had nothing extra to add to report. He thanked Pam Malek and ExxonMobil again for the opportunity they had provided the Intermediate School teachers. He also said he feels very fortunate to have his new staff members.
Middle School Principal Mike Sullivan had one thing to add to his written report. He advised that Health and P.E. are a little different this year. He decided to do an AB schedule instead of a 1,2,3 schedule. He paired up 7th and 8th graders on “B” days. They are now getting equal amounts of health and physical education. This is more physical education than students had last year. Vicki Balgua and Randall Rice share a room. He thinks it is going to work just fine; he got ideas for this schedule change by calling other schools. He thinks it is the best for kids; they may still need to tweak it a little.
Mike also said he plans to provide more MBI information in the future. MBI lessons are taught during base class.
Eileen advised that she had re-capped the Title budgets and uses in her report. She reviewed with the trustees that all food service “extras” must have a line of revenue.
Mrs. Johnson also distributed a document written by Lance Melton entitled the Recent History of School Finance in Montana. She also disseminated the Team Meeting schedule for the year.
OLD BUSINESS OR FOLLOW UP INFORMATION
A. Trustee Committee Assignments
Supt. Johnson had attached committee assignments for the trustees to review. She advised the following: If you want to trade, change, or take another assignment, let me know at the meeting, and I’ll make the adjustment. Some of these curriculum areas that have a committee are not up for review this year. As the year progresses you will be notified of meetings that take place in this curriculum area. See the curriculum rotation sheet for that schedule, which is also attached. This is a carry over from the June meeting.
Becky Malenowsky took the remaining two committees that had not yet been assigned. She will be on the Social Studies and Guidance Committees.
Teresa asked if anyone wanted to make any changes or had questions. No one requested a change. Trustees were advised that they would be notified when meetings are held.
Don Christman advised that a Computer Applications Committee should be added. Greg Bochy said he would serve on that committee.
B. Correction of Previously Reported Adult Breakfast Price
There was a mistake in previous reports about adult breakfast price. The cost is $2.00 per breakfast for an adult, not $1.25 as previously reported.
Tim asked about the easement from the state. Eileen said she still had no new information.
There was a brief discussion about providing bond information at the Open House. Eileen said JGA is going to run the booth. Sue Vinton suggested that all of them encourage everyone to stop and check out the presentation by JGA. She noted the signs that say “Preserve the Magic” are opening a lot of discussions and they are also peaking people’s interest.
Tim said he would like this on a future agenda: Form a school board sponsored committee that will solicit people to run for a school board trustee. He has read articles in the American School Board Journal about this, and it is a problem everywhere. Forming this committee has helped others with the situation. Trustees decided to call it the Trustee Development Committee.
Thomas Jones said he had researched how Wyoming provides school funding. 1.69 billion dollars for school funding comes from their minerals and natural resources. He believes during the next Legislative session trustees need to discuss this with the legislators. He distributed an article with this information for trustees to review.
The trustees reminded everyone of MCEL coming up in October.
Tim advised that there were 12 approved lane changes for teachers at the meeting he attended earlier today.
The next regular board meeting will be on Tuesday, October 10, 2006, at 7:00 p.m.
Thomas Jones moved to adjourn the meeting at 8:45 p.m. Greg Bochy seconded the motion. Teresa Stroebe, Sue Vinton, Thomas Jones, Greg Bochy, Tim Trafford, Becky Malenowsky voted yes; the motion passed six to zero.
Teresa Stroebe, Chairperson Diane M. Brook, District Clerk