REGION 9 BOARD OF EDUCATION
Joel Barlow High School –Library Learning Commons
Thursday, March 1, 2018 –7:30 p.m.
Region 9 Board of Education Members: D’Agostino, Coppinger, Johnston, Hocker, Denny, Graziano, Hancock, Williams
Administration: McMorran, Pin, Reiss
Others: 15 members of staff and public and videographer
CALL TO ORDER
Mr. D’Agostino called the meeting to order at 7:33 p.m.
APPROVAL OF MINUTES
MOTION: move to approve minutes from the February 20, 2018 regular Meeting of the Region 9 Board of Education. Coppinger, Williams. Approved. Unanimous.
MOTION: move to change the agenda for this meeting by moving Item B. under Discussion and Possible Action, to item III. Consideration of a School Resource Officer (SRO) at JBHS. Leave Public Comment to follow as item IV. Remaining agenda, renumbered, continues in the same order. Johnston, Coppinger. Approved. Unanimous.
CONSIDERATION OF A SCHOOL RESOURCE OFFICER (SRO) AT JBHS
Mr. D’Agostino spoke about the Public Forum regarding employing a SRO and funding sources possibly coming from the education or town budget. He encouraged board member comment. Mr. Hancock suggested that the SRO be added as a separate line item independent of the proposed budget. Mr. D’Agostino, Mrs. Denny and Mrs. Williams agreed with Mr. Hancock. Mr. Coppinger pointed out that an addition of an SRO to the budget would likely become a permanent item for the future. Mr. D’Agostino reported that Redding First Selectman, Julia Pemberton, will provide a Redding police officer to be at JBHS for the remainder of the school year. Mr. Hocker spoke about the potential curriculum enhancement by having a SRO at JBHS. Dr. Pin agreed that a SRO can be a resource for health and wellness, criminal justice courses, etc.
MOTION: move that the Region 9 Board of Education approve implementation of a School Resource Officer (SRO) beginning in the 2018-19 fiscal year, pending further discussion regarding funding options with town officials of Easton and Redding. Johnston, Coppinger. Approved. Unanimous.
Eva Ortiz, Cricklewood Road, Redding spoke about how an SRO could be more than a police officer and offer emotional support to students, if needed. She also spoke of possibility of grant funding to assist in paying for SRO.
Jeff Fligelman, Pocahontas Road, Redding spoke about importance of SRO.
Todd Drury, Pocahontas Road, Redding spoke about making SRO a line item on budget for clarification. He also was concerned about number of entrances to JBHS and need for better school security.
BOARD MEMBER COMMENT
Mr. Johnston spoke about positive impact SRO could have for student. Mrs. Graziano suggested consideration of the logistics of security as many groups use the building both before and after school hours.
DISCUSSION AND POSSIBLE ACTION: PROPOSED 2018-2019 OPERATING BUDGET
Dr. Pin reviewed changes from 2013-14 to present in student enrollment and how staffing needs have changed as a result. Dr. Pin spoke about the Teacher/Professional Staff Analysis Draft and methods of class size determination. Dr. Pin about the presented potential budget reductions Tier 1 through Tier 4. Mr. Coppinger expressed disappointment that areas to be eliminated were sports and acting. He suggested further review of budget items by administration. Mr. Hocker spoke about potential detrimental effect of eliminating freshman sports or theatre classes for incoming students. Mr. D’Agostino said the board needs to review for areas to reduce costs. Dr. McMorran advised further cuts could result in reduction of personnel. Ms. Williams observed that the budget decisions facing the board were difficult. Mrs. Graziano spoke about the possibility of increasing class size and agreed that the board is facing difficult decisions. Mr. D’Agostino asked Ms. Roszko about any potential savings in the Special Education budget. Ms. Roszko agreed to look into cost of contractual services for potential savings. Mr. Hocker spoke about the importance of understanding expenditures to help explain the budget to the public before referendum. Mr. D’Agostino noted since there will be fewer students next year, costs should be reduced. The next budget workshop is scheduled for Thursday, March 8, 2018.
Christine Calvert, North Street, Easton, spoke about the importance of AP classes at JBHS and that they be available to all students who wish to be enrolled.
Jeff Fligelman, Pocahontas Road, Redding, spoke about how reducing teachers may adversely affect education.
Eva Ortiz, Cricklewood Road, Redding, suggested researching expenditures for private school tuition (outsourcing) and potential for reductions of students who are attending. Ms. Ortiz spoke about importance of sports at JBHS.
BOARD MEMBER COMMENT
Mr. D’Agostino, Mr. Coppinger, Mr. Johnston and members of the Board of Education thanked the administration and staff for their hard work on the budget. They all agreed that some hard decisions will have to be made to ensure agreement.
MOTION: move that the meeting be adjourned. Coppinger, Hancock. Approved. Unanimous.
The meeting of the Region 9 Budget Workshop was adjourned at 10:36 p.m.
Submitted by Chris Hocker, Region 9 Board of Education Secretary
Recorded by Deborah DeLorenzo