Regular Meeting

                                                                                                            June 17, 2009

                                                                                                            Hollis-Brookline Middle School

 

 

Janice Tremblay, Chairperson

Tom Enright

Fred Hubert

James O’Shea, MD, arrived at 6:15 p.m.

Dan Peterson

Steve Simons

Tom Solon

 

 

Susan Hodgdon, Superintendent of Schools

Tim Kelley, Principal, Hollis-Brookline High School

Pat Goyette, Principal, Hollis-Brookline Middle School

Dawna Duhamel, Business Administrator

Carol Mace, Director of Curriculum

Robert Kelly, Director of Special Education

Betsy A. Packard, Recording Secretary 

 

Others present included members of the Public.

 

Chairperson Janice Tremblay called the meeting to order at 6:10 p.m.

 

1.         AGENDA ADDITIONS/DELETIONS

 

Supt. Hodgdon informed the Board that they had the following additions to the agenda:

 

§         Transportation Issues

§         PowerPoint presentation by Project Progress

§         Correspondence

 

2.         PUBLIC FORUM

 

Janet Merrithew, Hollis, addressed the Board, stating that her son was being promoted to the Middle School, and thus, she would be attending the Coop Board meetings in the future.

 

3.         MINUTES

 

Tom Enright moved that the Board accept the minutes of May 20, 2009 as written.  Steve Simons seconded.  Motion carried.  4 – 0 –1  (Tremblay abstained.)

 

Tom Enright moved that the Board accept the minutes of June 1, 2009 (special meeting) as written.  Steve Simons seconded.  Motion carried.  4 – 0 – 1.  (Hubert abstained.)

 

4.         POLICIES

 

Steve Simons moved that the Board amend Policy IIA – Instructional Library and Media Materials as follows:

 

            Page 11 – Section ‘Library/Media Use of AV Software’

 

            The following typos to be corrected:

            Page 2 IV.F.:  . . . brought n for . . . to read . . . brought in for . . .

            Page 6 . . . responsibilit . . . to read  . . . responsibility . . .

            Page 8 . . . andn . . . to read . . . and

 

Tom Enright seconded.

 

Mr. Kelley stated that there had been concerns raised by the Board and the public at the last meeting.  He reported that Chair. Tremblay, Mr. Simons, Ms. Goyette, and he met and came up with the following:

 

Page 13 – Section ‘Library/Media use of AV Media:  Guidelines for Classroom Use’

 

Use of the term “AV Media” within these guidelines refers to video and audiotapes, DVD’s, CD’s, software, streaming video, and any other type of audio or video broadcast.  These guidelines refer to the addition of AV Media into the library collection as well as one time usage within a course.

 

1.       At the beginning of the term, teachers should distribute a list of all materials they anticipate using within their course, including AV Media from the library collection.

 

2.       The AV Media must have a logical connection to the unit of instruction and be appropriate to the curriculum objective; a written lesson plan should be available.  The use should not involve recreation, entertainment, or reward and should be limited to pupils enrolled in the course.

 

3.       Any teacher using AV Media will be responsible for knowing its content and suitability in terms of age/grade of the students.

 

4.       If additional AV Media is used in the course, the teacher will be responsible for filing out a film/video user card to be filed with the department at least 10 school days prior to use.

 

5.       Any AV Media to be added to the collection or to be shown only once will be previewed by a minimum of two staff members, and approved by the librarian, a department chair, or administrator.

 

6.       With respect to age and subject appropriateness, unrated AV Media will undergo an additional approval process by the librarian, a department chair, or administrator.  This may result in requiring a parent permission form.  Any media rated “R” required approval by the department chair or an administrator and a parental permission form.

 

7.       All AV Media should be a lawfully made copy and use of Guidelines for Off-Air recording of Broadcast Programming for Educational Purposes must be followed when taping shows or films.

 

8.       If community members wish to view AV Media that is part of the library collection, they should contact the librarian to make an appointment for viewing on campus during school hours.

 

9.       As with all instructional materials, those in disagreement with the appropriateness of AV Media selected for use in a course, its inclusion in the library collection or conditions placed on its use, and who wish to reevaluate instructional materials, should follow the Reevaluation Procedures found in Section VIII of this policy.

 

Mr. Peterson stated that he had reviewed the revisions, and had the following suggestions:

 

§         In the definition of AV Media, they should adjust “video broadcast” to “video transmission.”

§         In Section 4, the teacher must submit a user card 10 days prior to use, but it does not say when the teacher will get notification to the request.  Suggested that a response of 5 days prior to use be used.

§         Any piece of media in the school’s collection should be listed on the website so parents can review the list.

§         Add a re-evaluation procedure.

 

Mr. Kelley stated that the staff would be going through all pieces of the media this summer.  He was concerned that if it was added into the policy that night, then they would be out of compliance.  He felt that teachers should list what is to be shown in the course.  He added that what Mr. Peterson was suggesting was not course related, but rather library related.

 

Mr. Simons pointed out that there could be a current event and the teacher wanted to show something the next day, if it was unrated, it would need to be reviewed.

 

Mr. Peterson felt they should put someone on the task of reviewing and creating a list, then afterward, if anything new was added to the library, it could simply be added to the list.

 

Mr. Simons pointed out that the policy states “10 days prior,” but #5 modifies it to “if used only once” it must be previewed by a minimum of two staff members and approved by the librarian, department chair, or administration.

 

Mr. Peterson felt the wording was giving different directions and needed to be worked on.  He felt the wording was confusing.  He did not want to limit anything that could be pertinent.

 

Fred Hubert moved that the Board table discussion on Policy IIA – Instructional Library and Media Materials.  Dan Peterson seconded.

 

Chair. Tremblay asked that Mr. Kelley read Mr. Peterson’s additions, which he did.  She then pointed out that the intent of tabling the discussion was so the policy could go back to the committee for wordsmithing. 

 

Dr. O’Shea stated that he felt the policy was restricting teachers and education, and thus he would vote “no.”

 

Mr. Peterson stated that there were two important points:

 

1)       Make the policy clear so everyone understands it.

2)       Have a conceptual discussion as to whether it is the Board’s viewpoint that they should publish a list of the media in the library.

 

The motion to table discussion on Policy IIA – Instructional Library and Media Materials carried unanimously.  6 – 0 – 0.

 

Steve Simons moved that the Board accept Policy GBEB – Staff Conduct for final reading.  Tom Enright seconded.  Motion carried unanimously.  6 – 0 – 0.

 

Steve Simons moved that the Board amend Policy IIB – Class Size by removing typing “30” in the chart and change the last sentence to read:  “Class sizes shall be reviewed and evaluated annually.”  Tom Enright seconded.  Motion carried unanimously.  6 – 0 – 0.

 

Steve Simons moved that the Board remove Policy JLCCA –  HIV/Aids as a policy.   Tom Enright seconded. 

 

Mr. Simons explained that IHAMC – HIV/Aids-Health Education is already in place, and is simpler and sufficient.

 

Motion carried unanimously.  6 – 0 – 0.

 

5.         SAU 41 WEB SITE UPDATE

 

Mr. Peterson presented a PowerPoint presentation on the on the status of the SAU web site.  He discussed the following points:

 

§         Multiple web site developer “experts” for each school building.

§         Updates made mostly through Front Page, which is no longer supported.

§         No consistency across the districts.

§         Simple changes must be made by going through an “expert.”

§         Businesses are moving to Content Management Systems (CMS).

§         Ektron is the leader in Web Content Management.

o        Founded by a Hollis resident.

o        Serves education, small businesses, and charitable foundations.

o        Headquartered in Nashua.

o        Has excellent reputation.

o        Souhegan uses Ektron.

 

CMS has two components:

 

§         Makes it easy to building a framework.  Anyone with permission can update the web site, such as cafeteria staff updating menus.

 

§         User ability to use the web site.

 

Ektron proposal:

 

Highly discounted package includes:

 

      Professional Edition                                                  $15,000

      Training of 7 people – 4 days each                               $7,200

                                                Subtotal                         $22,000

 

      Special Discount for SAU 41 -$8,940

      Total for June 09 Commitment                                   $13,260           

 

Each district to pay for training of their own personnel.  Timing of training is flexible and local.

 

Recommendation:

 

§         Coop to fund software and training of Rich Raymond and 2 additional Coop experts ≈ $10,000 using unreserved funds. 

 

§         If other districts want to use the program, they can pay for their people to be trained.

 

§         The cost of the software is $7,500.  It is recommended that the Coop pay the cost, thus the cost would be split between the two towns.  Must act soon if want to use the unreserved fund balance.

 

§         It is felt that costs could be recouped within a year.

 

Mr. Hubert asked if they have talked to the other districts.  Mr. Peterson responded that he had only spoken to Bill Beauregard

 

Dr. O’Shea asked if the SAU could use it.  Mr. Peterson responded that they could, and that Rich Raymond handles the SAU web site.  Mr. Raymond added that he would like to register the domain.

 

Supt. Hodgdon stated that this was the first time she had seen the presentation.  She reported that the Hollis School District uses Power School, along with a math and data management system.  She felt they will have a full plate for the next year.

 

Mr. Peterson explained that if the Board goes forward with this, then they could review with the SAU the next night.  If there are no conflicts, they could go forward.  He added that there was nothing that requires any district to implement right away, or get training right away.

 

Chair. Tremblay asked what other packages the committee looked at.  Mr. Raymond responded that they had looked at three others.  One from Chicago was $44,000.  Chair. Tremblay was concerned that they did not really talk with other companies.  She felt that they had not done due diligence.

 

Mr. Simons asked what the bottom line was for software and training.  Mr. Peterson responded that it was $10,000.

 

Steve Simons moved that the Board allocate $10,000 from unreserved funds, if available, for the purchase of the Content Management System.  James O’Shea seconded.

 

Fred Hubert moved that the Board amend the motion to be contingent upon discussion at the SAU meeting the next night, and review and approval of the Superintendent.  Tom Enright seconded.  Motion carried unanimously.  6 – 0 – 0.

 

Mr. Hubert stated that he would like to hear from Ms. Duhamel in regards to available funds.  Ms. Duhamel responded that she felt confident that there would be $10,000 available.

 

Steve Simons moved that the Board amend the motion to read “allocate up to $10,000 from the unreserved funds for CMS proposal contingent upon the Superintendent’s approval by June 30th.”  Fred Hubert seconded.  Motion carried.  5 – 1 – 0.  (Tremblay opposed.)

 

6.         PROJECT PROGRESS

 

Mr. Peterson informed the Board that he would be filling in for Venu Rao in giving the PowerPoint presentation on Project Progress. 

 

Mr. Peterson stated that the big picture for this project was to find a way to minimize the use of fossil fuels district-wide.  He then reported on the following:

 

Project Progress to be implemented in two phases:

 

§         Energy Conservation Phase

§         Sustainable Energy Generation Phase

 

The current status of the total energy consumption within the SAU was presented.

 

Mr. Peterson stated that members of the Advisory Team have talked to State, district, and town officials, receiving an uniform response of the need for a consultant.  The potential SAU benefit is $80,000 - $160,000 per year in savings.

 

The Town of Hollis has provided $5,000.  The Coop is asked to fund $25,000 representing SAU 41.  The start-up fees will be refunded from savings, and sooner if a grant is obtained. 

 

Issues are:

 

§         How long will it take?

§         Will it mean missing the budget cycle and the March meeting?

 

Things to consider:

 

§         Coop BudCom is not in favor of consultant expense at this time.

§         Grants and other funding being sought but will take time.

§         Timeliness may reap significant benefits.

 

The request of the Advisory Team is for the Coop Board to allocate up to $25,000.  Mr. Peterson suggested that a discussion regarding this issue be held with the SAU Board the next night.

 

Steve Simons moved that the Board spend up to $25,000 for a consultant for Project Progress on consideration of the Superintendent’s approval by June 30th.  James O’Shea seconded.

 

Mr. Enright asked if Mr. Peterson was going to vote for the motion.  Mr. Peterson responded that he understood the Budget Committee’s point of view, that we should save on our own first.  However, he is also a member of the Project Progress Team and understands the need for a consultant.  He questioned if they wanted to take staff time to drive the plan, or get a consultant instead.   He concluded that he would support the motion.

 

Steve Pucci, Chair of the Budget Committee, brought forth the following points:

 

§         May need a consultant, but pointed out that the premise of the project was not to spend taxpayer’s money.  That is what was said up front, now the Team is asking for taxpayer money.

 

§         Good things have been started in the Coop.  It is felt that they should conserve and get their energy consumption down before hiring a consultant.

 

§         If they are basing the project on savings, then they should understand the terms of the agreement, such as:

 

o        What the starting point is.

o        Acts of God.

o        What happens if there is a cold spell and they use more energy than in the past.

 

Mr. Peterson clarified that the premise of Project Progress was not to “not use taxpayer’s money,” but rather there be no tax impact.  Therefore, if taxpayer’s money is used, they will get it back.  He added that the Team did not want to go into this endeavor without someone understanding it, therefore it is felt that a consultant is needed from the start.

 

Dr. O’Shea asked Ms. Duhamel  if they had the ability to fund the request.  Ms. Duhamel felt that they would have the ability to fund the request.

 

Motion carried.  5 – 1- 0.  (Tremblay opposed.)

 

7.         ADMINISTRATOR REPORTS

 

Technology – Content Management System; Data Management System

 

Mr. Raymond reported that they had looked at a data management system module done by Pearson.  It takes testing data from Power School in puts it into the module.  He added that he had seen a demonstration and it was easy and straightforward, and has built in graphics.

 

Chair. Tremblay stated that if the Coop becomes a user, then they can track a student’s progress and progression from K – 12.

 

Mr. Hubert asked what the cost was.  Chair. Tremblay responded that the total package is $32,000.

 

Supt. Hodgdon stated that she and Ms. Mace have seen four demonstrations, adding that the pricing is for the whole SAU per/student.  Hollis School District will make a decision tomorrow night.  The module will allow districts to house data and track students from K – 12.  It would also allow the primary schools to track their students after they have left K – 6.

 

Mr. Hubert asked what Brookline’s feelings were.  Chair. Hodgdon responded that it had not been presented to Brookline yet.

 

Chair. Tremblay informed the Board that this initiative could be eligible for Technology Stimulus funding.  There is money available.  If Hollis votes to go with it, then the plan is to start the application process for the funding.  There is a $1.75/student annual maintenance fee.  The upfront cost for software and training is $15.00 /student in the Hollis and Coop districts.  If Hollis just goes with it on their own, then it will cost them $26.00/student.

 

Supt. Hodgdon explained that they are looking at whether they want to buy or build a system.  She felt the price was better to purchase, rather than to build.  She added that the system did have some limitations, but Pearson was trying to work that out.  She stated that she approved it and will recommend it to the Hollis School Board the next night.

 

Mr. Hubert stated that it sounded like a nice package; however, he was concerned about spending another large sum of unreserved funds.

 

Supt. Hodgdon stated that initially, the discussion was just for the Hollis School District.  Hollis is taking this on as a pilot.

 

Mr. Peterson asked if Power School was in all the districts.  Mr. Raymond responded that it will be.  Mr. Peterson asked how the data and information was stored and tracked currently.  Ms. Mace responded that it is scattered.   Some is done by paper, while other electronically.  This would get everything in one format.  She added that they had been discussing this as a need SAU-wide for several years.

 

Ms. Mace stated that some of the types of information that could be stored in the system are:  State tests; NWEAs; grades; common assessments; formative-type screening; analysis of the “big picture,” all of which will allow the following of student progress.

 

Mr. Peterson questioned whether the program did analysis or if it just stored data.  Supt. Hodgdon felt that it did both.  They would have the ability to just look at the data, but they would also have the ability to run reports, from district level to classroom level.

 

Ms. Mace explained that the administration would be trained first, then the classroom teachers.  She felt that the assessment form was generic.  She felt this product fits the bill, and thus felt it should be brought to each board.

 

Mr. Hubert was concerned that it was a SAU decision, yet not all of the SAU is ready to go.  He felt the Coop should wait a year.  He asked if Mr. Kelly had had a chance to assess the program.  Mr. Kelly responded that he had not looked at it a great deal, but had talked with people in the field that have used it, and it was felt it was useful.  He added that he had talked with Ms. Mace as to what data he would need stored.  Supt. Hodgdon stated that the Assistant Director of Special Education had looked at the program.  She liked some parts, yet had some concerns.

 

Mr. Simons questioned that the urgency was due to the use of unreserved funds.  Supt. Hodgdon stated that the Hollis School District wanted the Coop to know what they were doing.  It will take time to implement – a good 6-12 months.  Also, there is a volume discount if the Coop joins in.

 

Mr. Enright stated that he shared Mr. Hubert’s concerns.  He questioned how Ms. Goyette would use the program.  Ms. Goyette responded that she had not yet seen the Pearson piece.  She stated she had concerns with who would input the data.  Some schools hire a full-time person to input the data.

 

Chair. Tremblay stated that there was time for the Coop to sit and look at the merits of the product and let the Hollis School District pilot it.

 

Mr. Peterson felt that data warehousing would be beneficial at some point, but felt it should be phased in.  He felt that they should let someone else take the lead.

 

 

Business Administrator’s Report

 

Ms. Duhamel distributed her report.  She stated that the budget was about the same as last month.  The reason for this is the application of $144,000 IDEA grant.  Ms. Duhamel presented and discussed 21 different line items that were either over or under budget by $5,000.  She felt that there would be $125,000 more available to spend by the end of the fiscal year.

 

Mr. Simons asked if the items that are traditionally under budgeted are being looked at and adjustments made.  Ms. Duhamel stated that they were.

 

Mr. Enright stated that in regards to employee benefits, they traditionally have a lot of employees that take the buy-out.  He questioned when they would have an idea of what next year’s costs will be.   Ms. Duhamel responded that they will know better by September, after the new hires have chosen their health plan.

 

Chair. Tremblay stated that she would like the Board to entertain taking some of the unreserved funds and setting up a contingency fund.  Mr. Peterson responded that he did not feel they had the mechanism to do it.  Mr. Hubert didn’t feel they could legally do it.  He added that he liked the idea of a contingency fund, but he did not think they could use the unreserved funds.

 

Mr. Peterson felt that it was important to see how the figures presented ripple into next year’s budget, and how to use this information when developing next year’s budget.

 

Mr. Enright stated that there were two things going on and the rest was pretty much balanced:

 

            ~  Special Education – approximately $300,000 – never been able to predict

            ~  Benefits – like to talk about it in September

 

Mr. Hubert pointed out that employees’ spouses could be laid off, so employees who previously took the buy-out may now take advantage of the District’s health benefits.

 

Mr. Peterson felt that the District had been most diligent.

 

Principals’ Reports

 

High School

 

Mr. Kelley informed the Board that there was a mistake on his report he sent out.  It states that the baseball team lost in the semi-finals.  Mr. Kelley explained that that was last year.  The baseball team did not make the playoffs this year.

 

Mr. Kelley stated that it has been tradition for the senior class to take a class trip at the end of the year, which brings the class together for their final week.  It was felt that it would be beneficial to create that bonding experience earlier in the year.  Therefore, a committee of staff members have proposed an initiative to start next year called Seniors as Leaders Together (SALT).   It will be a one-day experience with a cost of $11,000 - $12,000.  It will be funded from outside of the budget.  There are funds from previous classes that must be used.  Therefore, Mr. Kelley proposed that these funds be used as follows:

 

            1/3 as class gifts

            1/3 to scholarships

            1/3 to SALT

 

Going forward, they will ask each senior class to donate to the junior class.  It is also hoped to pick up some private funding in the future.

 

Mr. Kelley reported that he was not happy about the NEASC Report.  He stated that he was concerned about the school’s accreditation, due to facility needs.  He stated that Oyster River has high NECAP scores, but just got off probation due to facility needs.

 

Mr. Kelley informed the Board that he had the following donations:

 

§         $1,498.00 from the American Chemical Society for the ACS-Hach High School Chemistry Grant  awarded to Gina Bergskaug.

 

Steve Simons moved that the Board accept $1,498.00 from the American Chemical Society for the ACS-Hach High School Chemistry Grant.  Fred Hubert seconded.  Motion carried unanimously.  6 – 0 – 0.

 

§         $7,500.00 from the United Way of Greater Nashua for the Hollis Brookline Alcohol Prevention Coalition.

 

Steve Simons moved that the Board accept $7,500 from the United Way of Greater Nashua for the Hollis Brookline Alcohol Prevention Coalition.  Tom Enright seconded.  Motion carried unanimously.  6 – 0 – 0.

 

§         $3,500.00 from the Gate City Striders for the Hollis Brookline Dollars for Scholars.

 

Steve Simons moved that the Board accept $3,500.00 from the Gate City Striders for the Hollis Brookline Dollars for Scholars.  Tom Enright seconded.  Motion carried unanimously.  6 – 0 – 0.

 

 

Mr. Kelley stated that the Board held a meeting on June 1, 2009 to review hiring.  He was asked to verify with Ms. Duhamel that the numbers were accurate placeholders.  Remaining to be hired are:  Special Education, Guidance Counselor, School to Careers and a part-time Guidance Counselor.  Mr. Kelley proposed that the part-time Guidance Counselor position be combined with the School to Careers position.  This would add benefits, but the S.A.P. position went from 1 FTE to 0.75 FTE.  Mr. Kelley also proposed that some of the High School’s funds be used for support staff at the Middle School.  He stated that the workload was there.

 

Ms. Goyette stated that she and Mr. Kelley had had a conversation with Jeannie Hayes.  She does not know what her needs are, but will let them know when she does

 

Mr. Kelley stated that he proposed the use of FY 09 funds to complete the room 373 science lab and convert a portion of 374 as an additional science classroom.  This would free up room 248 for a badly needed English classroom.  Currently, physical science is taught in 248 and those classes relocate onto the third floor for lab activities.  Mr. Kelley stated that the cost has come in higher than he thought.  The cost is $30,000 for equipment.  The school custodians will provide the labor.  The figures for the plumbing portion have not come in yet. Mr. Kelley felt that the school needed this, as they are short science space.  He explained that they have 11 teachers using 7 spaces.  The mini-café and the library are used most of the day.  They do not have a classroom for wellness. He felt it would cost approximately $40,000 - $50,000 to take care of the science rooms and to relocate F.I.R.S.T., which currently uses room the tech room.  Mr. Kelley stated that the change would not give the High School more room, but would, however, give them more adequate space.

 

Dr. O’Shea asked if completing the rooms would get any staff members off carts.  Mr. Kelley responded that he had gone to the staff and advised them that the day of having their own room is over.  If a staff member has 4 classes in a room, then they should consider it their own.  He added that he had staff members down to two rooms.  Being divided among 3 rooms is unacceptable.

 

Sue Hay, Tech teacher, addressed the Board.  She explained that the Tech Center was intended for teaching engineering technology.  They teach engineering and robotics.  There are two rooms:  one clean room; one dirty room.  Room 374 is the dirty room used by F.I.R.S.T. six days a week during the building season, and 1 day a week for the rest of the year.  Engineering also uses this room, as well as the robotic challenges.  There are lots of materials and tools in the room.

 

Mr. Kelley stated that he was aware of Ms. Hay’s concerns.  If they do decide to make they changes, then they will need funds for relocating F.I.R.S.T.  He added that he wanted to explore options.

 

Mr. Kelley stated that he had come up with three proposals:

 

§         ½ F.I.R.S.T. and 2/3 science

§         Divide room 50-50 with moveable walls

§         Look at off-site storage and utilize other classrooms.

 

Ms. Hay stated that there were three factions asking for the space.

 

Steve Simons moved that the Board expend funds from the unreserved funds to equip Room 373 and to expend up to $20,000 to find a solution for F.I.R.S.T.

 

Mr. Hubert asked if the school had metal or woodworking shops.  Ms. Hay responded that they had none.   Mr. Kelley added that when the High School was at the current Middle School building, they had a wood shop.

 

Mr. Hubert wondered if it made sense to outfit the “dirty room” into a science lab.  Mr. Kelley responded that room 373 was supposed to be a general science lab , but it isn’t.  He added that Ms. Hay’s programs are taught in two rooms – one room for the teaching and use of computers (clean room), and one room for the building and workshop (dirty room).  Mr. Kelley explained that his proposal would make both the clean room and the dirty room into science labs, then room 248 would become a regular classroom.

 

Dr. O’Shea questioned if the dirty room was partitioned in half, what would be the size of the rooms?  Mr. Kelley felt they would be approximately 80 square feet for instructional space, but was not sure that would meet standards.  He added that Ms. Hay has some heavy-duty machines.

 

Mr. Peterson stated that he had been involved in the F.I.R.S.T. program for seven years, and he applauded Ms. Hay’s efforts to find a solution.  He did not feel that cutting the space in half was a viable solution.  He explained that there was not enough room during “build” season as the room currently was.  He felt that if the room was needed for science lab, then they should take it over completely and find another space for F.I.R.S.T.

 

Mr. Kelley asked the Board for the ability to make a decision on the conversion of the rooms in the next few weeks.  He added that if it meant moving F.I.R.S.T., then he would abandon the idea of having physical science there and changing the space.

 

Mr. Enright did not understand why F.I.R.S.T. could not move off-site, and rent space some place.  Ms. Hay responded that students come in during free time to work on the F.I.R.S.T. project.  They use the 20 computers for the CAD designs, and the business end of F.I.R.S.T. and they use the dirty room for the mechanical and electrical portions.  When they need to brainstorm, they go across the hall to the classroom.  She added that some teams do go off-site, but a sponsoring company provides space.

 

Mr. Peterson pointed out that if the equipment in room 374 was moved, then it would not be available for the other classes that are taught.

 

Tom Enright moved that the Board reserve up to $40,000 to bring Room 373 up to science lab quality.  Steve Simons seconded.  Motion carried.  5 – 1 – 0.  (Hubert opposed.)

 

Steve Simons moved that the Board reserve $17,500 to convert Room 374 to a physical science classroom, if feasible.  James O’Shea seconded.  Motion tied.  3 – 3 – 0.  (Hubert, Tremblay, Enright against.)

 

Mr. Kelley stated that room 374 is not used all day long.  Ms. Hay explained that room 373 had one sink, while room 374 had two small sinks against the wall, an eyewash, and a hood.

 

Steve Pucci stated that if it was March, he felt there would be a different solution.  He felt it made sense for a couple of people to go look at the spaces and try to come up with a solution.  He added that they needed data gathering for all the classrooms, and it should be an open action item to see how best to utilize rooms.

 

Mr. Kelley responded that he provided the Board with data on every classroom as to how it is used during the day.  It was distributed in November.  It showed every period for each classroom and the number of students in the classroom.

 

Mr. Peterson stated that in terms of room 374, he was concerned with expenditure of money in the area.  He felt that turning it into a functional science lab would not allow it to co-exist with F.I.R.S.T. and Ms. Hay’s other programs.  He was not interested in a half-baked science lab.  If the room was needed as a science lab, then he felt it should be turned into a full lab and then find a way to accommodate F.I.R.S.T.

 

Dr. O’Shea concluded that if room 373 was turned into a full lab, and room 374 was turned into a full lab, then they would have the new task of finding space for F.I.R.S.T. and Ms. Hay’s programs.

 

Mr. Kelley stated that he had heard all the discussion and was not in disagreement with any.  He felt that at the end of the day, the spaces would probably remain the same.

 

Middle School

 

Ms. Goyette stated that her report was in two parts:  the report, and recommendations.

 

Mr. Goyette reported  that Kim Rizzo-Saunders had been appointed Assistant Superintendent at Con-Val.  Bill Nagel music, has been reaching out to both communities with concerts.

 

Enrollment for next year (actual students) is at 474, with no registrations over the summer.

 

Ms. Goyette stated that she had asked for a 0.2 algebra position last year.  She thanked the Board for providing that, and explained that the 0.2 position was not needed for the coming year.  Intervention Math classes will be taught by core teachers.  These changes create the need for additional textbooks as follows: 

 

                                 Book                                          Amt                        Cost

            Glencoe Pre-Algebra textbooks                       80                     $6,539 (new)

            (What the High School uses)                                                      $2,461 (used and 50 borrowed)

 

            McDougal/Littell Algebra textbooks                 40                     $3,174 (new)

            (What is currently used, increase in

             enrollment and additional classes)

 

 

James O’Shea moved that the Board authorize up to $10,000 for the purchase of 80 Pre-Algebra textbooks and 40 Algebra textbooks at the Middle School.  Steve Simons seconded.

 

Mr. Hubert questioned when one purchases used books, the quality has been checked, but he wondered who checks the quality when borrowed from the High School.  Ms. Goyette responded that she did not have that knowledge.

 

Dan Peterson moved to amend the motion as not to restrict the purchase of used textbooks at the principal’s discretion.  Fred Hubert seconded. 

 

Dr. O’Shea asked if Ms. Goyette felt that new textbooks would be more effective for her teachers.  Ms. Goyette responded that she did, adding that they hadn’t purchased new textbooks in the past six years, and they try to rotate replacement.

 

Mr. Peterson felt that they needed to figure out how to educate students without the use of textbooks.

 

Motion on the amendment carried.  4 – 2 – 0.  (Simons, O’Shea opposed.)

 

Motion as amended carried unanimously.  6 – 0 – 0.

 

Mr. Peterson stated that with the current state of the economy, he felt that they could expect an influx of students from private school.  He asked how long parents have to register students.  Ms. Goyette explained that they have up to the first day of school.  They do not register students on the first day, but will take registrations on the second day of school.  She stated that last year they had about 12 new students.  Mr. Kelley added that the official numbers are taken on October 1.  Ms. Goyette stated that she gets more students from home schooled than private schools.  Mr. Kelley stated that the High School gets a few from private schools.

 

Mr. Peterson stated that part of the cost-savings initiative was to look at transportation.  He felt the following issues needed to be looked at:

 

1)       Number of buses

2)       Routes

3)       The level that the district obligates to transport students

 

Mr. Peterson questioned if the Coop would assume the responsibility to transport all students at the High School level.  He pointed out that the District is obligated to transport students through 8th grade.  He suggested also transporting grades 9 and 10, and if students in grades 11 and 12 want to ride the bus, they should be charged a fee.  He added that it costs about $18,000 to run each bus.

 

Mr. Hubert informed the Board that there was a meeting scheduled for Monday with Supt. Hodgdon, Ms. Duhamel, and the Ordes.  He will not be able to make the meeting.

 

Mr. Peterson stated that the only way to define the number of students they need to transport is to get a commitment from students from the optional grades.  He suggested that :

 

            ~  Grades 9 & 10 get transported.

            ~  Grades 11 & 12 can opt into/out of bus transportation on a semester basis.

 

Mr. Peterson felt that it needed to be done now.

 

Mr. Kelley felt that the fee structure needed to be less than the parking fee to encourage bus use.

 

Mr. Peterson wondered about incentives for the bus company to optimize bus routes.  Ms. Goyette stated that they had just collected data for the Safe Routes.  She added that it was amazing how many Middle School students get dropped off by High School students. 

 

Mr. Kelley stated that parking fees are $20 per semester, or $40 per year.

 

Mr. Enright stated that it probably costs approximately $400 per student to bus them.  He felt the purpose of a fee was to get an accurate number of students using the bus, not to re-coup costs.  He felt $75 - $100 would be suitable.

 

Mr. Hubert felt if the fee was too low, then students would get a pass to ride the bus occasionally.

 

Mr. Kelley stated that when sports seasons are over, buses are packed for the way home until the next season starts.  A significant number of junior and seniors use the bus.

 

Mr. Simons asked if it was ethical and legal to bus some students and not others.  Mr. Enright responded that the District was only required to bus students through the 8th grade.

 

Mr. Kelley felt it could be problematic for bus drivers to check passes.

 

Mr. Enright asked how quickly Mr. Kelley would need it in place to be effective for September 1st.  Mr. Kelley stated that they would need students purchasing bus passes the week before school starts.  He pointed out that they would need picture IDs and there is the communication logistics.

 

Tom Enright moved that the District offer bus transportation to freshmen and sophomore students at no charge and to junior and seniors at a cost not to exceed $50 per semester.  Dan Peterson seconded.

 

Mr. Simons felt that there was a need for a committee to put the specifics together.  Mr. Enright stated that they had administrators that could do that.

 

Mr. Peterson asked if Mr. Kelley needed anything from the Board.  Mr. Kelley felt that they should just make a motion that they will charge junior and seniors and the administrators will work out the specifics.  He added that he needed to see which students ride in the morning.  He added that he would like to talk with the students.

 

Mr. Hubert stated that if Mr. Kelley came back to the Board after talking with the students and reported that ¾ of the juniors ride the bus, then he would not want to charge them. 

 

Dr. O’Shea did not feel that the data from the Ordes was accurate.

 

Mr. Pucci addressed the Board stating that the initial intent of the Budget Committee was not to generate fees, but rather to see how many students ride the bus, then define the routes and how many buses are needed.

 

Motion carried unanimously.   6 – 0 – 0.

 

Dr. O’Shea stated that they had talked about hiring an attorney for negotiations.  He questioned if the Board needed to encumber funds.  Ms. Duhamel felt they had the money and did not need to encumber funds.

 

Director of Curriculum

 

Ms. Mace reported that the SAU 41 Professional Growth Model (PGM) was successfully implemented 3 years ago.  Each year, members of the PGM Committee collect feedback, then meet in May  to review the plan.  This was a good year.  The PGM Committee identified three common themes and priority areas to address:

 

1)       Tweak the goal-setting guidelines and include easier to follow summary flow-charts.

2)       Provide additional professional development and support.

3)       Streamline paperwork.

 

Ms. Mace stated that she would work with Ms. Duhamel to set up an in-house electronic system.

 

Ms. Mace reported that the SAU 41 Curriculum Task Force is charged with the task of completing curriculum guidelines with common format.  They have made big strides.  Janet Allison, NEASC Deputy Director, acknowledged the work done in her March 2009 letter to Tim Kelley.

 

 

 

 

Completed this year and posted to SAU website:

 

            Language Arts (9-12)

            Mathematics (K-8)

            Physical Education (K-12)

            Technology (9-12)

 

Completed this year and in editing phase:

 

            Visual Arts (K-8)

 

Areas to be completed by September 2009:

 

            Science (9-12)

            Social Studies (K-12)

 

Areas to be completed by September 2010:

 

            Mathematics (9-12)

            Performing Arts (K-12)

            Visual Arts (9-12)

 

Ms. Mace informed the Board that there is a common curriculum standard due to be completed December 2009 and which includes 45 states, New Hampshire being one of the 46.    After completion, each state will decide if they want to adopt the standards.    Ms. Mace stated that she would be watching this.

 

Dr. O’Shea asked if there was anyway that a local district could use the standards if the state did not adopt them.  Ms. Mace stated that the second part of the initiative was for groups.

 

Director of Special Education

 

Mr. Kelly stated that he did not have a report.  What he needed to discuss was for non-public.

 

9.         STAFFING

 

Supt. Hodgdon presented the following staffing requests:

 

Jeanne Saunders – Letter of resignation to accept the position of Assistant Director of Special Education at SAU 41.  Ms. Saunders will not be returning to the Middle School position.

 

James O’Shea moved that the Board accept Jeanne Saunders’ letter of resignation, with congratulations.  Fred Hubert seconded.  Motion carried unanimously.  6 – 0 – 0.

 

Susan Doyle – 1.0 FTE Special Education (previously 0.5 FTE position).  Ms. Doyle has Bachelors of Science in Special Education from Green Mountain and a MEd from Rivier.  12 years experience. 

Salary:  M Step 12 at $58,627.

 

Mr. Hubert asked why the position had been changed from 0.5 FTE to 1.0 FTE.  Ms. Goyette stated that she is taking two 0.5 FTE positions and making one 1.0 FTE position.

 

James O’Shea moved that the Board approve Susan Doyle for the position of Special Education at M Step 12 and a salary of $58,627.

 

Susan Smith – 0.5 FTE Special Education Coordinator.  Ms. Smith has been the Director of Special Education in a couple of districts in New Hampshire.  She has a MEd and a Certificate of Advance Graduate Studies.  There are no benefits with this position.  Salary would be up to $35,000.

 

Ms. Goyette stated that she has interviewed candidates and felt they were fortunate to find a candidate for the 0.5 FTE position.

 

Mr. Enright asked if the 0.5 FTE position was attractive to Ms. Smith.  Ms. Goyette responded that it was.

 

James O’Shea moved that the Board approve Susan Smith for the position of 0.5 FTE Special Education Coordinator.  Tom Enright seconded.  Motion carried unanimously.  6 – 0 – 0.

 

Supt. Hodgdon stated that she had received a copy of a letter from Penny Arsensault requesting to bargain an agreement for the coming school year.   She suggested September.

 

James O’Shea moved that the Board enter non-public session under the provisions of RSA 91-A:3 II (c) reputation.  Fred Hubert seconded.  A roll call vote was taken with all members present voting in the affirmative.   6 - 0 - 0.

 

The Board entered non-public at 10:15 p.m.