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Minutes from BOE Meeting December 13, 2016 Tuesday, 13 December 2016 13:33

Pender County Board of Education

Tuesday, December 13, 2016

Board Room

Pender Resource Center

798 U.S. Hwy. 117 South

Burgaw, N.C. 28425

6:00 p.m.

Board Members Present

Leadership Team Members Present

Katherine Herring, Chair

Dr. Terri Cobb, Superintendent

Kenneth Lanier, Vice Chair

Betsy Chestnutt, Director

Don Hall

Allen Vann, Director

Rochelle Whiteside

Alfredia Moore, Director

 

Joyce Keith, Director

 

Mary Mortensen, Director

Richard Schwartz, Attorney

Dr. Todd Blumenreich, Director

 

Miranda Roberts, Communications


Call to Order

At 6:02 p.m., Chair Katherine Herring welcomed all and called the meeting to order after determining a quorum was present.

Approval of the Agenda

Following the Pledge of Allegiance and a prayer, at 6:05 p.m., Kenneth Lanier motioned to approve the agenda with the addition of item 4a Retirement Recognition. Rochelle Whiteside seconded it, and the motion carried.

Recognitions

At6:10 p.m., the Board recognized the following individuals and programs:

-          Superintendent’s Holiday Card Winners Riley Tew, 12th Grade Pender Early College High School, and Zach DiCostanzo, 5th grade, Topsail Elementary School;

-          Renewals of National Board Certification for Christy Bishop, of Rocky Point Elementary School, and Hollie Humphreys and Wendy Strickland, of South Topsail Elementary School;

-          Coach Rodney Orr, of Heide Trask High School, who recorded his 300th victory as a basketball coach;

-          The Camp Invention program, which has received recognition from the National Inventors Hall of Fame;

-          Robert Justice, retiring from the Maintenance Department after more than 20 years of service.

Public Comment

At 6:28 p.m., Board Chair Katherine Herring opened the floor for public comment.

Celia Langston, Doug Schaefer, Jennifer Malpass, and Joy Harman addressed the Board with various concerns. Ms. Langston stated she was a parent representative from West Pender Middle School and expressed concern regarding the number of teachers leaving the school. Mr. Schaefer requested that the Board very carefully consider the potential impact on the education program if a request for the use of the Kenneth Lanier Auditorium at Topsail High School is approved. He believes such use would put a strain on the facility, which is used extensively by the school, for the primary function of serving the needs of the students. Ms. Malpass expressed concern about teacher turnover at West Pender Middle School. Ms. Harmon expressed concerns regarding Burgaw Elementary School and indicated she would be writing a letter addressing her concerns.

Vice Chair Kenneth Lanier thanked them for speaking and ensured the Superintendent received their contact information for response.

Pender County Schools and Communities is Schools Partnership Activities

At 6:39 p.m., Communities in Schools Director Louise Hicks provided an overview of how the organization partners with Pender County Schools to provide extra support to students. Ms. Hicks said that Communities in Schools spends approximately $400,000 a year in donation and grant funds providing services in Pender County Schools.

2017-2018 High School Course Catalog

At 6:48 p.m., Secondary Education Director Mary Mortensen presented the 2017-2018 High School Course Catalog. Minor revisions have been made from the 2016-2017 High School Course Catalog.

Budget Reports

Next, at 6:53 p.m., Chief Finance Officer Betsy Chestnutt presented budget reports.

Support for Students in Foster Care

At 6:54 p.m., Dr. Beth Metcalf, Director of Elementary Education, and Director of Accountability and Testing Sheryl Kimbro presented an overview of the current federal and state guidance on the new requirements for foster care students included in the Every Student Succeeds Act. She noted that the new Foster Care Stability Regulations just went into effect on December 10, 2016.

Consent Agenda

At 7:06 p.m., Rochelle Whiteside motioned to remove the Board minutes for meetings held on November 4, 2016 and November 15, 2016 from the consent agenda. Kenneth Lanier seconded, and the motion carried.

At 7:07 p.m., Don Hall motioned to approve the consent agenda with the deletion, Kenneth Lanier seconded, and the consent agenda was approved. The consent agenda included the following items:

-          Budget amendments;

-          Head Start Director’s Report, Budget and In-Kind.

Pender High School and Topsail High School Field Trips

At 7:07 p.m., Ms. Mortensen requested approval for Pender High School’s AP Academy to take an overnight, out-of-state field trip to Washington, D.C. April 8-10, 2017. During the trip students will explore the nation’s capital and learn more about the country’s history. The cost of the trip is $418 per student.

At 7:09 p.m., Rochelle Whiteside motioned to approve the field trip request. Don Hall seconded, and the motion carried.

Next, Ms. Mortensen requested approval for Topsail High School’s AP Literature and Composition students to take an overnight, out-of-state field trip to Washington, D.C. February 17-19/20, 2017. Students will visit the Folger Shakespeare Library and see two theatrical performances. The cost of the trip is $360 per student.

At 7:10 p.m., Rochelle Whiteside motioned to approve the field trip request. Don Hall seconded, and the motion carried.

Pender County Schools Low Performing Schools Plan

Ms. Mortensen, Dr. Metcalf and Middle School Director Parrish Griffin presented the Pender County Schools Low Performing Schools Plan. The PCS local school plan includes how the Superintendent and central office staff will work with the school to improve the school performance grade and growth score and monitor the process. The plan has been made public on each school’s website, as well as the district’s website. The public was given the opportnity to submit written comments, and parental notification was made by School Report Card letter and parent meetings at each school.

At 7:19 p.m., Don Hall motioned to approve the Pender County Schools Low Performing Schools Plan. Kenneth Lanier seconded, and the motion carried.

Mr. Griffin introduced Caroline Godwin, Burgaw Middle School principal; Dr. Leslie Newman, Cape Fear Middle School principal, and Bernita Jordan, West Pender Middle School assistant principal, to present individual low performing school plans.

Purchase of Two New School Buses

Next, Mr. Vann requested approval for the purchase of two new yellow school buses approved in the 2016-17 budget. He said the buses will take approximately eight months to deliver and funds will come from the 2017-18 budget. The cost for each bus is $90,000, for a total of $180,000.

At 7:53 p.m., Don Hall motioned to approve the purchase of two new yellow buses. Rochelle Whiteside seconded, and the motion carried.

Gifts and Donations

At 7:54 p.m., Ms. Chestnutt presented the following gifts and donations for approval:

-          Burgaw Middle School received a $200 donation from Black River Logging for the seventh grade account;

-          West Pender Middle School received six grants from the Assistance League of Greater Wilmington:

o   Sixth Grade - $1,000

o   Seventh Grade - $666

o   Eighth Grade - $1,000

o   EC - $453.47

o   Band - $1,000

o   Art - $1,000;

-          Pender County Schools received a $300 donation from a 2002 Pender High School Alumni to assist with Hurricane Matthew;

-          Pender County Schools received a donation of $1,050 to assist intellectually disabled students. This donation was presented by Tom Haley, Operation LAMB Director for the Knights of Columbus, Harry J. Hansen III Council 12281;

-          Penderlea School has been awarded a $6,000 grant from James Patterson and the Scholastic Reading Club to replenish the library and bring an author/speaker to the school;

-          Topsail Elementary School has received the following donations since the start of the 2016-17 school year:

o   Lowe’s Foods - $492.80

o   PTA for seven iPad minis - $2,234.28

o   Renovation Church - $200

o   Hampstead Women’s Club to Art - $500

o   Hampstead Women’s Club to Music - $500

o   Harris Teeter - $262.92

o   Pender Education Partnership to Ms. Payne - $315

o   Pender Education Partnership to Ms. Parrish - $267.85

o   PTA to guidance - $500

o   SPOT Festival - $378.43

At 7:55 p.m., Don Hall motioned to accept the gifts and donations. Kenneth Lanier seconded, and the motion carried.

Hours of Employment for Teacher Assistants

Next, Dr. Cobb and Ms. Chestnutt recommended changes to the hours of employment for Teacher Assistances, as allowed by General Statute; and clarification to local policy regarding Teacher Assistants working as bus drivers.

At 8:07 p.m., Rochelle Whiteside motioned to approve the recommended changed to the hours of employment for Teacher Assistants. Don Hall seconded, and the motion carried.

Pender County Schools Non-Educator Merit-Based Bonus Plan Revision

Dr. Cobb next presented revisions to the non-educator merit-based bonus plan. The revised plan includes all employees not paid on the teacher salary schedule, including maintenance staff, teacher assistants, bus drivers, clerical staff, and  now adds school-based administrators. Eligible employees must meet the plan’s specified requirements in order to receive the merit-based bonus, which will be paid in February 2017.

At 8:12 p.m., Rochelle Whiteside motioned to approve the revisions to the Merit-Based Bonus Plan. Kenneth Lanier seconded, and the motion carried.

Chiller Replacement for Cape Fear Elementary

At 8:20 p.m., upon advice from legal counsel that this item should have been advertised for bids, Kenneth Lanier motioned to remove the purchase of a new chiller for Cape Fear Elementary School from the agenda. Don Hall seconded, and the motion carried.

Street Name for Public Access Road off of Shepards Road for Address and Permit Purposes

Next, Dr. Cobb requested the Board move forward with naming the access roads for the Surf City project. This is necessary in order to obtain a building permit from the Town of Surf City for the schools and will allow an address for delivery and 911 purposes as well.

At 8:22 p.m., Kenneth Lanier motioned to move forward with the name recommendations of Literacy Lane for the main access road for the Surf City projects and Education Drive as the side access road. Rochelle Whiteside seconded, and the motion carried.

Second Amendment to Construction Managers at Risk Contract for New Additions and Renovations

Mr. Vann presented the second amendment to the CMAR contract between Pender County Schools and Barnhill Contracting for the additions and renovations at the Burgaw Middle, Cape Fear Elementary and Middle, Pender High, and West Pender Middle projects. The amendments address the substantial completion date, final completion date, and liquidated damages for substantial and final completion.

At 8:28 p.m., Don Hall motioned to approve the amendments to the CMAR contract as presented. Kenneth Lanier seconded, and the motion carried.

Report from the Board Chair

Board Chair Katherine Herring asked if Board Members had any comments.

Report from Board Members

Vice-Chair Lanier wished everyone a happy holiday season.

Rochelle Whiteside shared that Pender High School will hold its theater production Thursday, Dec. 15 at ArtBeat in Burgaw.

Report from the Superintendent

Dr. Terri Cobb shared information regarding the Groundbreaking ceremonies for the Penderlea and Surf City projects, which will take place Thursday, Dec. 15, and Friday, Dec. 16, respectively. Dr. Cobb shared that no taxpayer dollars have been used to put on the groundbreaking ceremonies.

Mr. Schwartz provided an update to the Board on the progress of the improper equipment lawsuit against the state. The trial court judgment on the pleadings in favor of the board of education will be appealed by the State, to the North Carolina Court of Appeals. The potential amount of funding that could be recovered by the board of education is: $560,275.27.

Closed Session

At 8:50 p.m., a motion was made by Kenneth Lanier, seconded by Rochelle Whiteside, and the Board voted to move into closed session, subject to advice from the attorney, pursuant to N.C. General Statute 143-318.11(a)(3), and (a)(6), to consider matters related to the employment of individuals, to prevent the disclosure of confidential personnel information under G.S. 115C-319 and -321, and to prevent the disclosure of confidential student information under G.S. 115C-402 and 20USC 1232g, and to consult with the Board’s attorney in order to preserve the attorney-client privilege.

At 9:43 p.m., the Board resumed its meeting in Open Session.

Human Resource Report

Upon a motion made by Rochelle Whiteside, seconded by Don Hall, the Board unanimously approved the Human Resource Report, as presented.

Ms. Whiteside expressed concern about the performance of the contractor for the janitorial services contract, GCA. Dr. Cobb advised that this contract is up for renewal this year and that Mr. Vann has been asked to issue an RFP for janitorial services.

Ms. Whiteside then expressed concern about the request for use of the stage and Kenneth Lanier Auditorium at Topsail High School, given the extensive use of that facility by the school. Dr. Cobb respectfully requested that the Board follow the policy and let the principal decide whether it will interfere with the instructional program. She advised that the principal had offered other areas of the school for use, consistent with the community use policy.

Adjournment
Upon a motion by Don Hall, seconded by Rochelle Whiteside, the Board voted 4-0 to adjourn the meeting.

Board Chair

Katherine Herring

Superintendent                                                                                

Terri R. Cobb, Ed.D.