9-18-2017 Regular Meeting Minutes

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MINUTES

REGULAR MEETING OF THE ALLEGHANY COUNTY SCHOOL BOARD
September 18, 2017

 

The Alleghany County School Board held its regular meeting on September 18, 2017, at 6:00 p.m. at Sharon Elementary School in Clifton Forge, Virginia.

PRESENT: Gerald E. Franson; Danielle I. Morgan; Norman L. Persinger, Jr.; Jennifer S. Seckner; Randall S. Tucker, and Jacob L. Wright.  Also present: Eugene P. Kotulka, Superintendent; and Lorie C. Bess, Clerk.

ABSENT:  R. Craig Lane


Chairman Tucker announced the following additions to the agenda:

1.  Under the Consent Agenda, a field trip request will be included as item #18-74-E.

2.  Agenda item #18-98, “Presentation of Timeline for Revisions of the Comprehensive and Capital Improvement Plans”.  This is an action item and will be inserted after agenda item #18-95.

3.  Agenda item #18-101, “Consider approval of revision to academic calendar”.  This is an action item and will be inserted after agenda item #18-98. 

4.  Agenda item #18-102, “Designate board member for New Tech Committee”.  This will be inserted after agenda item #18-101.


COMMUNITY PARTICIPATION

(18-69) OPENING REMARKS AND WELCOME BY SHERMAN CALLAHAN, PRINCIPAL, SHARON ELEMENTARY SCHOOL

Mr. Callaghan welcomed everyone to Sharon Elementary School and thanked the Board for its continued support.  He gave special thanks for the new roof on the school.   He thanked his staff for their dedication to the students. 

 

(18-70) REMARKS BY PTO REPRESENTATIVE

Schuyler Fury read the following statement:  “Good evening Superintendent Kotulka, Chairman of the board, and guests.  As a member of the Sharon Elementary School PTO, I would like to welcome you to our very special school. It is a pleasure to serve as the PTO secretary this year and our year is off to a great start.  I would be remiss not to mention our PTO President, Misti McGuffey. Misti is very dedicated to the PTO organization and works hard day in and day out to ensure that all of our PTO needs are met.  However, our success would not be possible without the support we have received from you. The staff, students and PTO of Sharon would like to take the time to personally thank you for investing in our school by ensuring our building received a new roof over the summer and by agreeing to have a portion of our back playground fenced in to protect our children. While we understand that these are both costly investments, we cannot thank you enough for committing to the completion of both projects.  As I stated the year is off to a great start and the PTO recently sponsored our first fundraiser of the year by hosting a candle sale in which our JK- 2nd grade students participated. We would like to personally congratulate and thank Cloetta Harris in the JK class for being our top seller and selling 98 candles. We would also like to thank all of the students and parents that participated in the fundraiser. Grades 3 through 5 will be participating in their fundraiser later this fall and we are excited to get that up and going. We are conducting two separate fundraisers for the upper grades and lower grades to help parents who have children in multiple grades to prevent them from having their children compete.  We also started the PAW Points system this year which encourages participation by all students, staff, parents and families to participate in school sponsored and PTO sponsored events. At the end of the school year, the grade with the most PAW points will have the opportunity to go on a special field trip or have a unique and fun class room party.  Again, this program was established to help foster an all-inclusive learning environment for our students in which families feel welcomed and encouraged to participate in their child’s education.  Our SCA students have been very involved with multiple activities this year some of which include helping out with open house and sponsoring a tye-dye day this Friday.   Mrs. Puckett does an outstanding job with those students and it is always a joy to see them so invested in the well-being of the school and their fellow students.  Some of our upcoming events include the first ever educational bazaar on October 5 as well as the Halloween Carnival on October 27. We invite you to attend and see what our students and teachers have been up to over the last couple of months.  Lastly, I would like to take a moment to commend the teachers and staff here at Sharon School for always going above and beyond to make sure our students and their families feel right at home while in an education environment. I can personally attest that each and every teacher and staff member from the custodians to the nurse to the teachers all the way to Mr. Callaghan and everyone in between are truly exceptional individuals dedicated to the mission of serving children and are what makes Sharon School so special. Each morning students are greeted by a smiling staff member and that goes a long way each and every day. While on vacation at the beach last week, my daughter repeatedly stated she missed school and her teacher. If a child playing on the beach states she misses school and that does not show you how special Sharon Elementary School is…..I don’t know what will. We are blessed to be able to send our children to this school and again I thank you for making that possible with your continued support of Sharon Elementary School and its future growth.  Thank you!”


(18-71) SCHOOL BOARD COMMENDATION: 

Sharon Elementary student who earned a top score on Spring 2017 SOL assessment – Carter Nicely
ABCD Award – Crystal Vess

 

(18-72) PUBLIC COMMENT

There were no citizens wishing to address the Board.


(18-73) SCHOOL BOARD MEMBER AND SUPERINTENDENT COMMENTS

Mr. Franson thanked everyone for attending the meeting and Mr. Callahan and staff for hosting.  He thanked the teachers and encouraged them to let the Board know if they need anything.

Mrs. Seckner stated Sharon school is near and dear to her heart because all of her children attended there.  She thanked the SCA representatives for leading the pledge.  She thanked the PTO for what they do for the school.  She praised Crystal Vess for her many years of helping kids learn to read and making it a priority.  

Mrs. Morgan thanked Mr. Callahan and staff for hosting the meeting.  She stated her children also attended this school and it well prepared them for high school.  She congratulated the student on his perfect SOL score.  She stated there were no words to articulate how special Ms. Vess was to her children and this school.  She reported she and Mrs. Seckner recently spent a day at the middle school visiting classes and they were impressed by the use of the Chromebooks. 

Mr. Persinger echoed comments made by other Board members.  He thanked Ms. Vess and all the teachers at Sharon school for what they do.  He congratulated the student on his perfect SOL score and thanked everyone for attending the meeting.

Mr. Wright thanked the school staff for hosting the meeting.  He congratulated the student on his perfect SOL score.  He stated it is nice the Sharon community has a school in their neighborhood and have such great community involvement.  He stated he is hopeful to one day have a joint school system.  He stated the Cougars and Mounties need to be put on a shelf and do this for the next generation so we can provide a better education for our students. 

Mr. Tucker thanked the PTO and stated they do a lot of good things for the schools.  He stated Ms. Vess has been a staple of the building for many years and provided so much to the students.  He stated teachers and teacher assistants really can make a difference in someone’s life.  He thanked Mr. Callahan for hosting the meeting. 

Mr. Kotulka thanked the school staff for hosting the meeting and stated he could see the family love in the building.  He thanked everyone for attending the meeting. 

(18-74) CONSENT AGENDA

The following items were included for approval.   

A.  Approval of Minutes of August 21, 2017 Regular Meeting
B. 
Approval of payment of bills
C.  Cafeteria report – August 2017
D.  Communications/Monthly Reports

       1. JRTC monthly report
E.   Field Trip request
       1.     CMS 7th grade students to Washington, D.C., Nov. 2-3, 2017
       2.     AHS band/choir students to Orlando, FL, April 11-15, 2018

MOTION: That the items listed on the consent agenda be approved as presented.

MOTION:  Mrs. Morgan    
SECOND: Mr. Franson   
ROLL CALL VOTE:  Unanimous           


BUDGET AND FINANCE

(18-75) BUDGET REPORT

 

School Operating Fund

$2,487,448.05

School Textbook Fund

$1,187,146.10

Alleghany Foundation Nursing Grant

$75,090.66

Governor’s School

$152,974.04

Scholarship

$76,742.01

Alleghany Foundation Mental Health Initiative

$16,481.45

School Capital

$1,274,672.77

Medicaid Reimbursement

$486,869.88

Technology

$29,999.57

New Tech Program

$385,348.49

Grand Total

$6,172,773.02

 

 

(18-76) TEN-DAY STUDENT MEMBERSHIP REPORT

The report of our enrollment for the first ten days of school and for the Tuesday after Labor Day was presented.  The enrollment for JK-12 as of September 5, 2017 was 2083.  Our budget is based on 2080 students.


(18-77) APPROVAL OF BUDGET DEVELOPMENT CALENDAR AND DESIGNATION OF 6:00 P.M., JANUARY 24, 2018 AS DATE FOR PUBLIC HEARING ON 2018-2019 BUDGET

Annually the School Board approves the budget calendar and establishes the date for the public hearing on the budget. The proposed budget calendar designates January 24, 2018 for the public hearing on the budget.

MOTION: That the Board approve the budget development calendar and public hearing date, as presented.

MOTION:   Mr. Franson     
SECOND:  Mrs. Seckner  
ROLL CALL VOTE: Unanimous            


(18-78) DESIGNATION OF SCHOOL BOARD LIAISON(S) TO ADMINISTRATIVE BUDGET COMMITTEE

Chairman Tucker asked for volunteers to serve on the committee.  Mr. Wright suggested Mr. Lane serve on the committee.  Mr. Lane was absent but Mr. Wright stated he would serve on the committee if Mr. Lane declined.  Board members were provided meeting dates.

MOTION: That the Board designate Mr. Franson and Mr. Lane to serve on the Administrative Budget Committee, with Mr. Wright as the alternate if Mr. Lane declines.

MOTION:   Mrs. Morgan      
SECOND:  Mrs. Seckner  
ROLL CALL VOTE:  Unanimous           


(18-79) SCHOOL ACTIVITY FUND AUDIT

On an annual basis a certified public accounting firm is engaged to audit the financial records of each of our schools’ activity fund and the division’s cafeteria fund. Robinson, Farmer, Cox Associates recently completed an audit of the aforementioned entities for the 2016-2017 fiscal year and have submitted the final results of their audit. In the opinion of the auditors, the financial statements present fairly, in all material respects, the cash receipts, disbursements, and balances for the school activity and cafeteria funds. Three of the five schools plus the division cafeteria operation received no recommendations or comments. Two schools received minor recommendations, and each school has provided written plans to address these recommendations.  The results of the 2016-2017 school activity and division cafeteria funds audit reaffirm our long-standing practice of sound financial management in these areas. Our staff is to be commended for their consistent success in managing these funds.


SUPERINTENDENT REPORTS AND RECOMMENDATIONS

(18-80) CALENDAR INFORMATION

Mr. Kotulka reminded the Board of the following meetings:

- September 27 – No school for students.
- September 28 – VSBA Legislative Advocacy Conference in Charlottesville
- September 29, 9:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m. – School Board Retreat/Professional Development at  Merry Go Round Farm
- October 9 – No school for students.
- October 10, 12:00 p.m.  – JRTC Joint Board at JRTC
- October 16 – Regular monthly meeting at Callaghan Elementary School
- October 22-24 – VASS Fall Conference in Charlottesville       
- October monthly calendar- November 15-17 – VSBA Annual Conference in Williamsburg

 

(18-81) REPORT FROM SPECIAL COMMITTEE ON BOARD GOVERNANCE AND APPROVAL OF MINUTES OF AUGUST 30, 2017 MEETING

Mr. Lane, Mrs. Seckner, and Mr. Wright held a special committee meeting on August 30.  Two topics were discussed:  (1) selection of members to the JRTC Board, and (2) reviewing of all applications before approving positions

MOTION: That the August 30, 2017 minutes be approved as presented.

MOTION:  Mr. Wright     
SECOND: Mrs. Morgan   
ROLL CALL VOTE: Unanimous            

 

(18-82) REPORT ON SWIM LESSONS

Alleghany County Public Schools has partnered with the YMCA to provide swimming lessons for all 2nd graders.  There is no cost for the program as the program is being funded by a YMCA grant.   The goals of the program are as follows:

  • To develop water confidence and safety skills;
  • To master basic swimming stroke techniques;
  • To participate in an enjoyable activity; and
  • To participate in activities which can help improve health and fitness

The swim lessons will begin on September 29, 2017.  There will be 6 lessons; 5 lessons in the pool and 1 lesson of pool safety prior to the 5 swimming lessons.  Each lesson will last approximately 45 minutes.  An information letter, schedule, and permission form will be sent home to parents of all 2nd graders. 

 

(18-83) UPDATE ON ONE-TO-ONE INITIATIVE

An update was given on the One-to-One initiative regarding:

            1.  Staff Training
            2.  Chromebook Distribution- AHS
            3.  Chromebook Distribution- CMS
            4.  Network Performance


(18-84) TELECOMMUNICATIONS CONTRACTS – INVITATION FOR BID AND E-RATE 470 APPLICATIONS

The division’s telecommunications contracts will expire on June 30, 2018.   Under the current contracts, Lumos Networks has provided the division’s telephone service, long distance service, and wide-area network/Internet services since July 1, 2015.  To maintain the division’s eligibility for E-rate funding consideration and in order to collect bids in advance of the 2018-2019 budget cycle, the Supervisor of Technology will prepare an Invitation for Bid for Telecommunications Services that will be presented for action during the school board meeting on October 16, 2017. 


(18-85) APPROVAL OF APEX TOWER PROPOSAL

Apex Tower has offered a lease agreement proposing the construction of a cell tower on the Clifton Middle School/Mountain View Elementary School property. The proposed pad site (100’ x 100’) is to be located near the river on the Mountain View Elementary side of the property. Per the proposal, Apex Tower will construct an access road that will extend from Gleason Drive to the pad site.

MOTION: That the Board approve the lease agreement with Apex Tower, as presented.

MOTION:  Mr. Franson      
SECOND: Mrs. Seckner   
ROLL CALL VOTE:  Unanimous           


(18-86) UPDATE ON NEW TECH PROGRAM

Mr. Kotulka gave a PowerPoint presentation.  He explained we will implement a whole school approach.  He stated he believes this is an opportunity for students to become engaged, and when students are engaged, they will learn better. Mrs. Mutispaugh added she believes this is an excellent education model. 


(18-87) APPROVAL OF 2017-2018 COMMITTEES

The following committees were presented for approval:  Calendar Committee, CTE Advisory Committee, Gifted Advisory Committee, Greater Alleghany School Health Consortium Committee, Math Textbook Adoption Committee, Safe School Committee, School Health Advisory Board (SHAB), and Title I District Advisory Committee.

MOTION: That the committees be approved as presented.

MOTION:   Mr. Wright     
SECOND:  Mrs. Morgan  
ROLL CALL VOTE:  Unanimous

           

(18-88) RESOLUTION DESIGNATING OCTOBER AS BULLYING PREVENTION MONTH

Mrs. Morgan read the resolution. 

MOTION: That the Board approve the resolution designating October as Bullying Prevention Month, presented.

MOTION:   Mrs. Morgan     
SECOND:  Mrs. Seckner  
ROLL CALL VOTE:  Unanimous           


(18-89) ATTENDANCE REPORT

Excessive absenteeism is when a student misses 10% of the school year regardless of the reason.  Truancy is when a student has seven or more unverified absences.  Data was collected differently this year to be aligned with state reporting.   The Division also implemented attendance hearings with parents and students who were excessively absent or truant. 


(18-90) NON-RESIDENT AND NON-DISTRICT INFORMATION BY LOCALITY

At the August School Board meeting a request was made to provide information on non-district and non-resident applications separated by locality.  This information was presented for each school separated by grade level and locality. 

 

(18-91) SCHOOL BUS MILEAGE REIMBURSEMENT

It was recommended that the mileage reimbursement remain at $1.25/mile for use of Alleghany County School buses, effective for the 2017-2018 school year. The current total per-mile operating cost for a bus is $0.93.  This rate does fluctuate with the cost of fuel, parts, and labor.


(18-92) REPORT ON LEAD TESTING

The 2017 General Assembly enacted Bill 1359 to amend the Code of Virginia section 22.1-135.1 requiring Potable Lead Testing per EPA Lead Testing Standards at water fountains, bathroom and kitchen sinks.  Test results of 75 samples showed Alleghany County Public Schools well within compliance with EPA standards of less than 0.015 mg/L. 


(18-93) APPROVAL OF REVISED COST TO RESURFACE TENNIS COURTS AT CLIFTON MIDDLE SCHOOL

The original estimate requires revision to include the following: 

            Surface crack repair    $4,250*
            Resurface and paint    $22,500
            Total:                           $26,750 

*The crack repair cost ($4,250) was not included in the original estimated cost.  The total revised cost is $26,750.  

MOTION: That the revised cost of $26,750 to resurface the tennis courts at Clifton Middle School be approved as presented.

MOTION:  Mr. Wright     
SECOND: Mrs. Seckner  
ROLL CALL VOTE:  Unanimous           


(18-94) CAPITAL IMPROVEMENT AND OPERATIONAL MAINTENANCE UPDATE

Board members were provided the work orders in their agenda packet.     


(18-95) CDL TRAINING THROUGH DSLCC

Bus drivers are an important part of the educational process.  A challenge in the hiring process has been the length of training and certifications required to be a school bus driver.  The MOU shortens the process, reduces costs, and targets increasing trainee retention.  The cost will be $80 per student.


(18-98) Presentation of Timeline for Revisions of the Comprehensive and Capital Improvement Plans

The timeline presents the administration’s plan to review and revise the school division’s six-year comprehensive and capital improvement plans.

MOTION: That the timeline for revisions to the Comprehensive and Capital Improvement Plans be approved as presented.

MOTION:  Mr. Wright     
SECOND: Mr. Franson   
ROLL CALL VOTE:  Unanimous           


(18-101) CONSIDER APPROVAL OF REVISION TO ACADEMIC CALENDAR*

Alleghany High School staff has the opportunity to visit the New Tech programs at Magna Vista High School and Bassett High School on September 27, 2017.  This would require switching the Parent Teacher Conference Day with the Professional Development Day.  The revised calendar would have the Professional Development Day on September 27, 2017 and the Parent Conference Day on October 9, 2017.  This is Columbus Day and some parents have a holiday for this day.  In addition, parent conferences will be held from 12:00 p.m.-7:00 p.m. at each of the schools.

MOTION: That the revision to the 2017-2018 academic calendar be approved as presented.

MOTION:  Mr. Wright      
SECOND: Mrs. Morgan   
ROLL CALL VOTE:  Unanimous 

 

(18-102) APPOINT BOARD MEMBER TO NEW TECH COMMITTEE

Jennifer Seckner was appointed to serve on the New Tech Committee


POLICY REVISIONS

(18-96) POLICY GCBD-RE, “ANNUAL LEAVE: TWELVE MONTH EMPLOYEES”

Revisions clarify annual leave credit and years of service.  This item was presented for review at the August meeting.

MOTION: That the Board approve Policy GCBD-RE, as presented.

MOTION: Mrs. Morgan      
SECOND:  Mrs. Seckner  
ROLL CALL VOTE:  Unanimous           

 

(18-97) POLICY BCE, “SCHOOL BOARD COMMITTEES” AND BCE-R, “APPOINTMENTS TO JACKSON RIVER TECHNICAL CENTER BOARD AND JACKSON RIVER GOVERNOR SCHOOL BOARD”

Based on recommendations from the Special Committee on Board Governance, these policies were presented for review in an effort to clarify how appointments will be made to the Jackson River Technical Center Board and Jackson River Governor School Board in the future. 

    

OTHER BUSINESS

(18-98) ADDITION TO THE AGENDA

Agenda items added at the beginning of meeting:  18-74-E, 18-98, 18-95, 18-101, and 18-102

 

CLOSED SESSION

(18-99) CODE OF VIRGINIA: PERSONNEL MATTERS 2.2-3711.A.1., STUDENT MATTERS 2.2-3711.A.2, AND SCHOOL SAFETY REPORTS

MOTION: That the School Board enter closed session to discuss Personnel Matters, Student Matters, and School Safety Reports as authorized by the Code of Virginia Sections 2.2-3711.A.1, 2.2-3711.A.2, and 2.2-3711.A.19.

MOTION:   Mr. Wright
SECOND:  Mrs. Seckner
ROLL CALL VOTE: Unanimous
TIME:  7:54 p.m.

 

MOTION: That the School Board return to open session from closed session.

MOTION:  Mr. Franson  
SECOND: Mrs. Seckner
ROLL CALL VOTE:  Unanimous
TIME: 8:26 p.m.

 

CERTIFICATION OF EXECUTIVE SESSION

The Chairman requests a motion to certify that to the best of each member’s knowledge:

  1. Only public business matters lawfully exempted from opening meeting requirements by Virginia law were discussed in the closed meeting to which this certification applies; and
  2. Only such public business matters as were identified in the motion convening the closed meeting were heard, discussed or considered by the School Board.

                                    MOTION:   Mr. Wright 
                                    SECOND:  Mrs. Morgan 
​                                    ROLL CALL VOTE:     Mr. Franson – YES
                                                                        Mr. Lane - ABSENT
                                                                        Mrs. Morgan - YES
                                                                        Mr. Persinger - YES
                                                                        Mrs. Seckner - YES
                                                                        Mr. Tucker - YES
                                                                        Mr. Wright - YES                                 

                                                                        6 -YES           1 – ABSENT              0 -NO   

                                   TIME: 8:26 p.m.                       

        Randall Tucker_School Board Chairman_Signature
                       Lorie Bess_School Board Clerk_ Signature 
Chairman, Alleghany County School Board                          Clerk

 

PERSONNEL

(18-100) PERSONNEL ACTIONS

MOTION: That the Board approve all personnel actions as discussed in closed session and recommended by the Superintendent. 

MOTION:  Mrs. Seckner      
SECOND: Mrs. Morgan   
ROLL CALL VOTE:  Unanimous           

 

BOARD MEETING EVALUATION SURVEY

Board members were provided an evaluation summary from the August meeting. 

 

ADJOURNMENT

MOTION:  That the September 18, 2017 meeting of the Alleghany County School Board be adjourned.

MOTION:  Mr. Franson 
TIME: 8:28 p.m.

        Randall Tucker_School Board Chairman_Signature
                       Lorie Bess_School Board Clerk_ Signature 
Chairman, Alleghany County School Board                     Clerk