REDDING BOARD OF EDUCATION
Regular Meeting Minutes
John Read Middle School Community Room
June 25, 2019
ATTENDANCE: Board of Education: Irwin, Hoffman, Parkin, Pilato, Reilly, Whaley Absent: Hoeing
Administration: McMorran, Reiss
Members of the Public: 3
CALL TO ORDER:
Dr. Irwin called the meeting to order at 7:32 p.m.
APPROVAL OF MINUTES:
Motion: move that the Redding Board of Education approve the minutes of the May 7, 2019 Regular Board of Education Meeting. Reilly, Whaley. 6-0.
Motion: move that the Redding Board of Education approve the minutes of the May 28, 2019 ER9 Joint Boards Meeting. Reilly, Hoffman. 5-0-1 (Irwin abstained).
Darrell Bradford, Cross Highway, made comments regarding the gifted and talented program. He expressed concern regarding lack of accelerated program offerings for rising fifth graders and disappointment that placement evaluations would not take place over the summer.
Amy Arnold, Werf Drive, suggested the Board consider contracting with Camp Playland to house buses, suggested senior tax credit reform, and questioned how much of special education rise was related to behavioral issues. She also noted that a number of students were being withdrawn from JRMS to pursue more challenging courses of study elsewhere and noted that the New York Times had twice recently mentioned Redding in the real estate section without any discussion of the schools.
Linda Meyer Mitchell, Huckleberry Road, noted that the website has information on courses of study and academic paths through JRMS but omits reference to the potential of skipping grades to pursue math courses at Barlow early. She suggested that better communication of these opportunities may allay some concern regarding gifted education.
BOARD MEMBER COMMENT:
Dr. Irwin noted that the curriculum committee had a thorough discussion of math curriculum in May.
H. Whaley suggested a video with Dr. Pierson Ugol regarding math curriculum may be helpful.
C. Pilato noted that the gifted and talented working group does not do placement and also noted that she is working with V. Cram regarding a posting for a new recording secretary.
BUILDING ADMINISTRATIVE REPORTS:
DISCUSSION AND POSSIBLE ACTION – DONATIONS
Dr. McMorran noted that they expected a donation to be ready for discussion and possible acceptance but that it was not yet. No action to take.
DISCUSSION AND POSSIBLE ACTION – FISCAL END OF YEAR
S. Reiss led the board on a review of year end finances and the state of the health insurance reserve for Redding and central office. He projected the year to close with unspent funds of approximately $275,000 and recommended that money be transferred to the health insurance reserve fund in accord with recommendations from Brown and Brown to maintain 2-3 months of claims in reserve.
Motion: Move that the Board direct the Director of Finance and Operations to return $137,500 to the town and transfer the remaining $137,500 to the health insurance reserve. Hoffman, Pilato.
Discussion followed and the motion was withdrawn.
Motion: Move that the Board direct the Director of Finance and Operations to return $100,000 to the town and transfer the remaining balance to the health insurance reserve. Hoffman, Reilly.
Further discussion followed regarding the health insurance reserve.
The question was called and the motion failed 3-3 (Whaley, Parkin, Reilly opposed)
Motion: Move that the Board direct the Director of Finance and Operations to transfer all unspent funds to the health insurance reserve. Whaley, Pilato.
After further discussion, the motion was withdrawn.
Motion: Move that the Board direct the Director of Finance and Operations to transfer unspent funds from the 2018-19 operating budget to the health insurance reserve provided said transfer does not result in a minimum monthly case reserve of greater than $500,000. If said transfer would result in a reserve balance greater than $500,000, any difference between the balance of unspent funds and the amount required to reach a $500,000 health insurance reserve balance shall be returned to the Town of Redding. Whaley, Reilly. 4-2 (Pilato, Hoffman opposed)
DISCUSSION AND POSSIBLE ACTION – RESCHEDULE OCTOBER
The Board discussed that the October 8 meeting conflicts with Yom Kippur. The meeting had been proposed to be held jointly. There was a consensus that the meeting be moved to October 1. No formal action taken or required.
DISTRICT ADMINISTRATIVE REPORTS:
Mike D’Agostino, Glenn Hill Road, noted that the health reserve is not a slush fund and thinks the Board is doing the right thing by building it back to a healthy level with unspent funds.
Amy Arnold, Werf Drive, lamented what could have been with $275,000 in unspent funds, suggested exit interviews for departing students, and asked that the curriculum paths be made more clear.
Kristen Ansett, Whortleberry Drive, asked that schools be more transparent about gifted offerings and suggested Mr. Farina be made available to fifth graders.
Mike D’Agostino, Glenn Hill Road, commented that the Board should not go down the path a capital reserve fund as it will cause more problems than it solves.
BOARD MEMBER COMMENT:
H. Whaley thanked S. Reiss for “landing the plane” safely with respect to finances this year. She also suggested the board consider formally adopting the Wait Until 8thprogram regarding cell phones.
J. Reilly thanked Dr. McMorran for his remarks at the fourth grade stepping up ceremony regarding cell phone use and social media for young children.
C. Pilato thanked the administration for their hard work throughout the year.
Motion to adjourn. Hoffman, Whaley. 6-0.
The meeting was adjourned at 9:21 p.m.
Recorded and Submitted by
Chris Parkin, Redding Board of Education Secretary