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Minutes of Region 9 Board of Education, 04/24/2018

AGENDA: Region 9 Board of Education

RECEIVED 04/30/2018 10:19am
Michele R. Grande – Redding Town Clerk

REGION 9 BOARD OF EDUCATION
Regular Meeting
Joel Barlow High School – Library Learning Commons
Tuesday, April 24, 2018 – 7:30 p.m.

Minutes

ATTENDANCE
Region 9 Board of Education members: D’Agostino, Coppinger, Hocker, Graziano, Denny, Johnston, Hancock, Williams
Administration: McMorran, Pin, Reiss, McTague
Others: 5 members of public, videographer

CALL TO ORDER
Mr. D’Agostino called the meeting to order at 7:31 pm.

APPROVAL OF MINUTES
Motion: move to approve minutes of the March 20, 2018 Region 9 Board of Education Regular Meeting. Hocker, Hancock. Approved. Unanimous.

Motion: move to approve minutes of the April 2, 2018 Region 9 Board of Education District Hearing. Hancock, Williams. Approved. Unanimous.

STUDENT COMMENT
No comments as the Student Representative was not present.

PUBLIC COMMENT
None.

BOARD MEMBER COMMENT
Ms. Denny congratulated Barlow student athletes recently recognized at an event.

Motion: move to add to the agenda as Item VI-D, policy regarding qualifications of those from outside the school making presentations to students. Denny, Graziano. Approved. Unanimous.

DISCUSSION AND POSSIBLE ACTION: PENSION FUND UPDATE
Mr. Hocker, as chair of the Pension Committee, reviewed the status of the District’s Defined Benefit and Defined Contribution Plans for non-certified staff. The District had recently received an IRS determination that amendments to the Defined Benefit Plan as of July 1, 2015 were in compliance with IRS guidelines. The District is required to certify its adoption of the amended Plan. Mr. Hocker read the “Certificate of Resolution” to be executed by the board chair.

Motion: move to approve the Certificate of Resolution as read by Mr. Hocker. Hocker, Coppinger. Approved. Unanimous.

Mr. Hocker reported that the Pension Committee had recommended that the District move forward on making necessary changes for the oversight of the Defined Contribution Plan, including the engagement of USI Advisors to oversee the Plan, and that Mr. Reiss was working to implement this. Mr. Hocker then presented a draft of a revised Pension Committee charge that reflected the fact that the District was responsible for two separate plans, as had been recommended to the board by the Pension Committee (see attached).

Motion: move to approve revisions to the Pension Committee charge as presented. Coppinger, Graziano. Approved. Unanimous.

DISCUSSION AND POSSIBLE ACTION: PLANS FOR GRADUATION
Dr. Pin reviewed plans for the graduation ceremony scheduled for June 17 and school days following graduation until the last official day of school, June 21. In response to a question, Dr. Pin reported on the status of students whose academic records might jeopardize their ability to graduate on June 17.

DISCUSSION AND POSSIBLE ACTION: CLASS OF 2018 COLLEGE PLACEMENTS
Dr. Pin presented a preliminary report on the college placements of members of the Class of 2018, noting that to date, acceptances have been received from 229 different colleges and universities and 32 percent of the class have committed to a specific college. A formal report will be presented at the May board meeting. Mr. D’Agostino requested that data be presented in a way that helped track college placement performance from year to year.

DISCUSSION AND POSSIBLE ACTION: POLICY ON QUALIFICATIONS OF THOSE FROM OUTSIDE THE SCHOOL MAKING PRESENTATIONS TO STUDENTS
Ms. Denny stated that members of the public had expressed concern about the qualifications of individuals from outside of Barlow’s qualified staff who had been invited to make presentations to students during school hours, and guidelines for appropriate qualifications should be developed. After considerable discussion among board members, Dr. McMorran, and Dr. Pin, it was generally agreed that the board’s Policy Committee could consider developing such guidelines as a policy going forward.

ADMINISTRATIVE REPORTS
In addition to her written report, Dr. Pin spoke about the upcoming “safety seminar” for those students intending to drive to and park at school. She noted that feedback is typically solicited and received after such presentations, and that comments are taken seriously and can result in future changes.

Mr. Reiss reported on the status of the current year budget, health insurance reserves, and budget transfers, and responded to board member questions.

Mr. D’Agostino requested information on the disposition of facilities fees for a future meeting.

BOARD OR EDUCATION COMMITTEE REPORTS
Food Service (tri-district committee) – Mr. Johnston reported that the contract with the current food service provider will be extended for one year.

Transportation (tri-district committee) – Mr. Coppinger reported that the committee will be evaluating bids to provide bus service to the districts with a recommendation expected in time for the upcoming Tri-Board meeting.

Facilities and Fields Committee – Mr. Coppinger reported that the Committee will be meeting in May to discuss potential major capital projects and invited any input regarding such projects.

PUBLIC COMMENT
Susanne Krivit, Redding, noted that as a longtime immediate neighbor of Barlow, she had observed that most instances of unsafe student driving occurred outside of regular school hours.
Dana Gray, Redding, asked for communication about the specifics of the post-Graduation school schedule, and noted her belief that financial considerations have a significant role in determining college decisions.
Alyssa Mocco, Easton, stated that she supported having a policy on outside speakers; that she disagrees with the movement away from teaching facts in place of opinions; that she disagrees with the move toward having computer learning in place of teachers; that final examinations for AP courses should be optional, not mandatory; that she questioned the Writing Portfolio requirement; and questioned why the science program is changing.

BOARD MEMBER COMMENT
Ms. Graziano noted that there would be a Curriculum Committee in the near future. Mr. Coppinger spoke in favor of the Writing Portfolio requirement and mandatory AP testing.

RECESS TO EXECUTIVE SESSION
Motion: move to recess to Executive Session to discuss Attorney-Client Privileged Communication Regarding Budgetary Matters and invite Dr. McMorran to attend. Coppinger, Graziano. Approved. Unanimous.

Executive Session commenced at 9:45 pm.

RETURN TO PUBLIC SESSION TO REVIEW ITEM DISCUSSED IN EXECUTIVE SESSION
The board returned from Executive Session at 10:53 pm. No action was taken on the matter discussed.

ADJOURNMENT

Motion: move to adjourn the meeting. Hancock, Coppinger. Approved. Unanimous.

The meeting was adjourned at 10:54 p.m.

Recorded and Submitted by
Chris Hocker, Region 9 Board of Education Secretary