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Minutes of ER9 Joint Boards of Education, 01/22/2019

AGENDA: ER9 Joint Boards of Education

RECEIVED 01/29/2019 3:40pm
Michele R. Grande – Redding Town Clerk

EASTON, REDDING, REGION 9 JOINT BOARDS OF EDUCATION REGULAR MEETING
Joel Barlow High School – Library Learning Commons
Tuesday, January 22, 2019 – 7:30 p.m.
Minutes

ATTENDANCE
Region 9 Board of Education: D’Agostino, Hocker, Denny, Graziano, Hancock, Williams, Johnston
Redding Board of Education: Hoffman, Parkin, Pilato, Reilly, Whaley, Hoeing,
Easton Board of Education: Parker, Chieda, Reed, Hicks
Absent: Bindelglass (E), Shortt (E), Coppinger (R9)
Administration: McMorran, Reiss, Pierson Ugol
Other: Gina Pin, Jennifer Dewitt
Members of the Public: 12

CALL TO ORDER
Mr. Parker called the Easton, Redding, and Region 9 Joint Boards of Education Regular Meeting to order at 7:31 p.m.

Easton Board of Education – Mr. Parker called the meeting to order at 7:32 p.m.
Redding Board of Education – Dr. Irwin called the meeting to order at 7:32 p.m.
Region 9 Board of Education – Mr. D’Agostino called the meeting to order at 7:32 p.m.
(Each it’s respective “Board” and collectively, “the Boards”)

PUBLIC COMMENT
Jeff Fligelman, 72 Pocahontas Road, Redding
Spoke on behalf of himself and several other families who would like to see the Latin program continue at JRMS and JBHS. Mr. Fligelman spoke about the benefits of Latin in language development and understanding other civilizations. He cited that other DRG-A schools and most DRG-B schools teach Latin. Mr. Fligelman expressed the importance of allowing current Latin students to complete their program of studies as JBHS and colleges and universities require three to four years of a language.

Joanne Gray, 15 Lonetown Road, Redding
Ms. Gray spoke about student commitment to a program of studies in Latin. Ms. Gray expressed concern that cutting the Latin program would leave students short of the required years of proficiency in a language required by most colleges and universities.

Carol Murray, 60 Sport Hill Road, Redding
Ms. Murray expressed concern about the lack of continuity in the Latin program. Ms. Murray spoke of her frustration with repeated discussions about the status of the Latin program and how that may influence enrollment.
Adam Schwartz, 57 Giles Hill Road, Redding
Mr. Schwartz expressed his concern about the increase in special education budgets relative to other programs. Mr. Schwartz said he would like to learn more about the reasons for the increase in students requiring services and what the boards are doing in response.

Kathy Katts, 260 Silver Hill Road, Easton
Ms. Katts requested that the boards change the Health and Behaviors Survey from an “opt in” to an “opt out.” She spoke about the need for data improve to the response to student needs.

Justin Hixson, 61 Hill Road, Redding
Mr. Hixson spoke in support of studying Latin as a foundation for broader success in academics. Mr. Hixson encouraged the boards to address Latin as a core subject.

Claudia DeMelis, 74 George Hull Hill Road, Redding
Ms. DeMelis spoke about the benefits of participation in smaller classes such as Latin.

BOARD MEMBER COMMENT
Mr. Hancock thanked the members of the public who came out to speak in support of the Latin program and expressed that he disagrees with the idea of having to “sell” the Latin program. Ms. Reed shared support for the study of Latin as the study of a culture and its influences. Ms. Reed spoke about Latin as the core of the humanities. Mr. Hoffman recommended that members of the public interested in special education could view the special education presentation given January 10th at the Redding BOE meeting. The presentation starts at 9:05 PM of the Redding BOE meeting and relevant Q&A follows the presentation. Mr. Parkin alerted the boards about the current legislative session open in Hartford, CT. Mr. Parkin spoke about being informed about the potential influence of state legislation on the budget process. Mr. Parkin encouraged the public and the boards to pay particular attention to proposals surrounding forced regionalization of school districts in small towns and efforts to lower the threshold for excess cost sharing for special education. Mr. Parkin offered to provide links and resources to anyone interested in learning more.

Motion: move that agenda item VII B will become IV B.
Easton: (Hicks, Chieda). Approved, 4-0.
Redding: (Parkin, Reilly). Approved, 7-0.
Region 9: (Hocker, Williams). Approved, 7-0.

DISCUSSION AND POSSIBLE ACTION: SEARCH SURVEY
Dr. Pin, introduced Jennifer Dewitt, Housatonic Valley Coalition Against Substance Abuse. Ms. Dewitt spoke about the Search Institutes Attitudes and Behaviors Survey instrument. The survey instrument can be used for students in grades six through twelve. Ms. Dewitt spoke about increased data collection with the “opt out” option. The survey is funded in ER9 by the ERCCC. Dr. McMorran shared the relevant policy (6162.51). Region 9 recently amended this policy to allow for “opt out”. It takes two meeting cycles to amend a policy. The Redding and Easton boards will discuss this policy and the “opt out” option for the Search Survey at their next respective board meetings.

DISCUSSION AND POSSIBLE ACTION: THE FUTURE OF LATIN AT JRMS AND JBHS
Dr. McMorran presented data regarding enrollment and class sizes for the Latin program in Redding and Region 9.

RECESS TO EXECUTIVE SESSION TO DISCUSS: CENTRAL OFFICE ADMINISTRATORS PERFORMANCE REVIEWS
The Boards entered executive session at 9:29 p.m.

RETURN TO PUBLIC SESSION FOR POSSIBLE ACTION ON DISCUSSED ITEM IN EXECUTIVE SESSION
The Boards exited executive session at 10:33 p.m.

DISCUSSION AND POSSIBLE ACTION: CENTRAL OFFICE BUDGET
Dr. McMorran presented the Central Office Budget for 2019-2020.

Motion: move to approve the Central Office Budget for 2019-2020 as presented.
Easton: (Hicks, Chieda). Approved, 4-0.
Redding: (Pilato, Hoeing). Failed, 3-4. (Hoeing, Hoffman, Parkin, Whaley opposed.)
Region 9: (Hocker, Hancock). Failed 1-6. (D’Agostino, Johnston, Denny, Graziano, Hancock, Williams opposed.)

Motion: move to reduce the proposed Central Office Budget for 2019-2020 by $20,000.
Easton: (Reed, Hicks). Failed, 0-4.
Redding: (Pilato, Hoffman). Failed, 0-7.
Region 9: (Graziano, Johnston). Approved, 5-2. (D’Agostino, Denny opposed.)

Motion: move to reduce the proposed Central Office Budget for 2019-2020 by $7,000.
Easton: (Hicks, Chieda). Approved, 3-1. (Reed opposed.)
Redding: (Hoffman, Hoeing). Approved, 6-1. (Pilato opposed.)
Region 9: (Denny, Hocker). Approved, 4-3. (D’Agostino, Graziano, Johnston opposed.)

DISCUSSION AND POSSIBLE ACTION: DRG A & B SPECIAL EDUCATION BUDGET COMPARISONS
Dr. McMorran will present this information at future individual board meetings.

DISCUSSION AND POSSIBLE ACTION: APPROVAL OF 2019-2020, 2020-2021, 2021-2022 SCHOOL CALENDARS
Ms. Hoeing thanked Vicki Cram for her efforts in supporting the Calendar Committee.

Motion: move to accept the proposed Easton School District, Redding School District, and Region 9 School District calendars for the 2019-2020, 2020-2021, and 2021-2020 as presented.
Easton: (Hicks, Reed). Approved, 4-0.
Redding: (Hoffman, Pilato). Approved, 7-0.
Region 9: (Denny, Hocker). Approved, 7-0.

ADMINISTRATIVE REPORTS
None.

BOARD OF EDUCATION COMMITTEE REPORTS
Mr. D’Agostino reported that Mr. Reiss has been working with the town of Easton on the terms of the Central Office lease that expires in January. There is an option to lease the Central Office space from Easton on a month-to-month basis until new terms are agreed upon.

PUBLIC COMMENT
Jeff Fligelman, Pocahontas Road, Redding
Mr. Fligelman asked the boards to provide assurance regarding the Latin program as soon as possible.

Christine Young, Easton
Ms. Young spoke about the applications of Latin across all disciplines and questions of humanity.

Tim Brady, Center Road, Easton
Mr. Brady encouraged the boards to consider new and creative thinking in planning for our education budgets. Mr. Brady expressed concern about high mill rates in Easton and Redding.

Christine Calvert, 10 North Street, Easton
Ms. Calvert thanked the members of the boards for their time and effort and diplomatic deliberations.

BOARD MEMBER COMMENT
Members of the boards thanked the public for their attendance and comments.

ADJOURNMENT
Motion: move that the meeting be adjourned.
Easton: (Chieda, Hicks). Approved, 4-0.
Redding: (Hoeing, Reilly). Approved, 7-0.
Region 9: (Johnston, Graziano). Approved, 7-0.

The meeting was adjourned at 11:43 p.m.

Submitted by,
Jenny Chieda, Easton Board of Education Secretary

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