APPROVED: November 15, 2006
October 18, 2006
Hollis-Brookline Middle School
Jim Murphy, Chairperson
Richard Pike, Superintendent of Schools
Tim Kelley, Principal, Hollis-Brookline High School
Pat Goyette, Principal, Hollis-Brookline Middle School
Carol Mace, Director of Curriculum and Instruction
Bob Kelly, Director of Special Education
Mellinee Capasso, Business Administrator
Trevor Buteau, Student Representative, arrived at 6:40 p.m.
Betsy A. Packard, Recording Secretary
Others present included members of the Public.
Chairperson Jim Murphy called the meeting to order at 6:11 p.m.
Chair. Murphy informed the Board that Ms. Hall, Ms. Kirby, and Ms. Mosca would not be able to make the meeting. He added that he had received notification from Ms. Mosca stating that she was resigning her position on the Board for personal reasons. He stated that the Board will be advertising for a representative from Brookline to fill the position until March.
September 20, 2006
Chair. Murphy stated that on page 3, it reads “Policy JLCB” and it should read “Policy JLBC” both in the heading and in the motion.
Dan Peterson moved that the Board accept the minutes of September 20, 2006 as amended. Tom Enright seconded. Motion carried unanimously. 4 – 0 – 0.
Chair. Murphy stated that he had already informed the Board about Michelle Mosca’s letter of resignation.
Supt. Pike stated that he had received a letter from Anne Dumas, who was representing a group of parents that had a bus request regarding the corner of Westhill Road and Wallace Brook Road. Supt. Pike reported that a year ago, there were 8-9 students at the bus stop. This year there are 16, and it is projected that there will be 20-23 next year. Also, the bus must make a 3-point turn. Supt. Pike reported that he had been talking with Al Orde regarding the situation, and they are looking at making a change.
3. HOLLIS TRANSPORATION
Supt. Pike stated that a year ago while he was talking with Mr. Orde about transportation concerns, Mr. Orde had mentioned that he had not come to Board meetings in the past, and the he would like to on occasion so that he could touch base with the Board regarding any concerns. Supt. Pike stated that since each district had their own concerns, it made sense for Mr. Orde to meet with the individual Boards. He then introduced Al and Nancy Orde.
Mr. Orde informed the Board that for the first month of school, the buses covered 54,000 miles. He felt that a lot of it was attributed to Special Education, and added that it also included sports.
Chair. Murphy thanked Mr. Orde for his handling of the accident in Brookline involving an elementary bus and a pickup truck. Mr. Orde responded that they had not had a chargeable accident since the early 80’s.
Mr. Orde reported that as the routes get longer, the buses are having more problems getting back to the elementary schools in the afternoon. He informed the Board that it takes the buses 15 minutes to get from the High School down to the four corners because of all the students driving cars and leaving at the same time. Mr. Kelley stated that when it was time to release the buses, they hold back the student drivers to let the buses leave, but that was only the upper parking lot, not the lower ones. He added that last year they had a police officer on Rte. 122 to help when the buses were leaving. Mr. Enright stated that traffic is lined up from the light at the four corners, all the way to his house in the afternoons. He suggested that they might need to put a police officer at the light for about 15 minutes each day to help relieve the traffic congestion. Mr. Simons asked that Supt. Pike look into having a police officer at the light to help get the traffic through.
Chair. Murphy thanked Mr. and Mrs. Orde for coming in and meeting with the Board.
4. PRINCIPALS’ REPORTS
Mr. Kelley reported that the Math Team has done very well. He stated that there are 60 members on the team, and they recently went to the Worcester Poly Tech Institute Competition.
Mr. Kelley stated that the Granite State Challenge team is now in the semi-finals, and that they are 1 of 4 teams left. The first round has already aired. He added that he will get the dates of the other rounds out.
Mr. Kelley stated that in regards to field trips, he would like to request some flexibility. He pointed out that there are a lot of requests for field trips that come across his desk. Some athletic teams go away at Christmas time, FIRST has an overnight in Hartford, the Outing Club goes on camping trips once a month, just to name a few.
Mr. Enright responded that those types of trips haven’t come before the Board in the past. Mr. Kelley pointed out that the Policy stated that all overnight field trips must be approved by the Board.
Chair. Murphy questioned that they may need to change the policy.
Mr. Kelley stated that the Orlando Trip to Florida has been done for many years, and wondered if it was necessary to keep bringing it before the Board. He added that the music department is looking at going to New York City to tour museums and participate in some competitions.
Chair. Murphy asked what trips needed the Board’s action. Mr. Kelley responded that the NYC trip did.
Chair. Murphy asked that Mr. Kelley come back to the Board with a proposal as to how field trips should be handled.
Ms. Goyette stated that the Middle School has only one overnight trip, which is Washington, D.C. She added that she sold the trip many years ago, and since then has not requested approval from the Board, but rather just updates the Board each year.
Mr. Kelley stated that they would like to make a presentation to the parents next week regarding the NYC trip. He added that the Orlando trip, which has been approved in the past, needs to start looking into flights.
Tom Enright moved that the Board approve the NYC (music department) and the Orlando (science department) field trip requests subject to the principal’s oversight. Dan Peterson seconded. Motion carried unanimously. 4 – 0 – 0.
Mr. Kelley informed the Board that he would like to improve the lower parking lot (across from the ball field), as there were some safety concerns. He stated that he would like to put in a guardrail and a picket fence to define the lot area. This would allow only two defined exit areas. He added that the one at the ball field has defined exits, and that there is a $100 fine for driving over the sidewalk. Mr. Kelley added that he would also like to get some security cameras.
Mr. Enright asked how much money had been raised from the parking fees. Mr. Kelley responded that they had raised $11,000 this year. He added that he would like to keep $1,000 for the cost of passes next year, but may need to use it for the two projects mentioned. Mr. Kelley stated that the digital recorder costs approximately $4,000 and that each camera is approximately $500. The rear parking lot would be the primary spot for the cameras, then the sides of the building. Mr. Simons asked where the monitors would be located. Mr. Kelley responded that he would locate them somewhere where administration could monitor them.
Mr. Kelley stated that eventually, he would like to pave the lower parking lots, but for now, he wanted to define the area to prohibit creative exiting.
Tom Enright moved that the Board authorize Mr. Kelley to expend parking fee funds for safety improvements at the lower parking lot and for security cameras. Steve Simons seconded. Motion carried unanimously. 4 – 0 – 0.
Mr. Kelley informed the Board that Ryan Coulter, baseball coach, had applied to the Town of Hollis to construct baseball dugouts at the ball field. He added that permits had been obtained, and that he wanted to bring it to the Board’s attention.
Chair. Murphy asked where the funding was going to come from. Tim Bevins stated that the funds had been raised last spring. Mr. Kelley added that he did not anticipate coming to the Board and asking for funding, he was merely asking for approval.
Mr. Enright stated that he was ok with the project as long as they hadn’t circumvented the wetlands setback issue. He added that the person issuing the permit may not be aware the wetlands setback. Mr. Bevins responded that Mr. Coulter had said that he had talked with the Conservation Commission. He then asked what was needed from the Conservation Commission. Mr. Enright responded that the Commission needed to waive the setback requirement. Mr. Kelley stated that the Board was asking him to make sure that the Conservation Commission was aware of the wetlands setback, and that they waive it. He added that the permit was issued the day before and that it expired in two years.
Mr. Enright moved that the Board authorize the construction of dugouts at the ball field subject to confirmation that the Conservation Commission had approved the wetlands setback. Steve Simons seconded. Motion carried unanimously. 4 – 0 – 0.
Mr. Kelley announced that Coach Lou is going to be inducted into the NHIAA Hall of Fame. The induction ceremony will take place on Sunday, November 19th, noontime, at the Courtyard Marriott in Concord, NH. The cost is $35.00 per person. Coach Lou will be one of 7-8 people being inducted.
Mr. Kelley reported that last year, the cost of transportation for vocational education to Nashua North and South, Alvirne, and Milford was $110,000. During the budget process, it was felt that this figure could be reduced by allowing students to transport themselves, and combining runs. Therefore, the budget was reduced to $66,000.
Mr. Kelley stated that there were a few students who elected to transport themselves. He added that there were some issues with the receiving schools. Nashua North was ok with it, however, Nashua South, Milford, and Alvirne has space concerns.
Mr. Kelley reported that the cost to transport the vocational education students was currently $107,000. He pointed out that that was a problem. He added that he would like to make some proposals for the upcoming year.
Mr. Enright stated that last year, time was spent looking over the transportation schedule, and it was felt that it could be done more efficiently. He asked if Mr. Kelley had done a review of the schedule, like they had done last year. Mr. Kelley responded that there didn’t seem to be any way for efficiency of routes. He pointed out that the starting times for the schools were: Alvirne 7:25, Nashua 7:20, and Hollis/Brookline 7:15. Mr. Kelley stated that most of the buses are at the school by 7:05. The voc ed students hop off the bus and get on a van that takes them to the other schools. He felt that the issue was the number of students they were transporting, not the routes themselves. He questioned if they should bus students if there were 5 or less on the bus. Mr. Enright pointed out that the District is not required to transport secondary students.
Supt. Pike stated that there had been a discussion last year, and it was decided to reduce the budget by $30,000 because they had come up with some creative transportation. He pointed out that there are 6 students that go to Alvirne that are in a 2-year program. He felt that they could not tell the students that they couldn’t go and finish their second year. He also felt that a piece of this issue was philosophical. He pointed out that the District offers AP courses for the advanced student, thus he felt they needed to offer programs for the voc ed students.
Chair. Murphy stated that the budget jumped from $50,000 to $100,000 last year. The Board decided to pull it back to $66,000. He pointed out that this was the second year in a row that they had no ability to figure out the problem. He felt that they needed to work through the budget. He added that he was not in favor of running buses/vans to Alvirne for a handful of students. Mr. Enright stated that last year they saw lot of singletons. Mr. Kelley reported that there are 2 students in the a.m. and 4 students in the p.m. that go to Alvirne. He pointed out that the question was, as a District, do we cancel the voc ed courses such as they cancel AP courses if only 5 students sign up. He questioned if the Board wanted to decide not to run a program if they didn’t have a minimum number of students sign up.
Ms. Orde stated that on the original list from Voc Ed, they had 8 students going to Nashua North, but it went down to 4. Mr. Kelley responded that they still have 8 students attending, but 4 are driving themselves. He added that he had asked the students going to Alvirne if they wanted to drive themselves, and their response was “why, if they could be bussed.”
Mr. Enright felt that they needed more information. He felt that a Board member should sit down with Mr. Kelley and look at the programs. Chair. Murphy asked that Mr. Kelley look into this.
Room Usage Report
Mr. Kelley distributed a Room Usage Report and a Section Listing Report. Mr. Kelley reported that enrollment was going up, thus there were not many classrooms available. He informed the Board that on the Room Usage Report, “1.0” indicates the room is used 2 semesters, and “0.05” indicates that it is used only one semester, while “open” means it is free that period. Mr. Kelley stated that they are using half the Library for classroom space, and that the Room 310 – Computer Lab they were using 3 periods for classroom space. He added that the regular classrooms were running 100%. Room 248 was left open in anticipation of needing it for lunch. Mr. Kelley informed the Board that if they needed to add a teacher, there would be no place to put him/her four out of the seven periods. Mr. Kelley stated that English 9 Reading was combined with English 10 Reading. In regards to Honors Literature, there are 180 F (full year) and 183 H (half year) students.
Mr. Enright asked if there was anything that the Board needed to focus on. Mr. Kelley responded that in the Budget Overview, there are 10 points he highlighted. He added that he proposes that they shoot for class sizes of 25, but pointed out it may be a challenge. He stated that he had to set some classes at 28 to get everyone in. However, that cannot be done with science. There is a limit of 24 for science classes.
Student Representative Report
Mr. Buteau reported that the Granite Stated Challenge episodes that have already aired are available for viewing online at the NH Public TV website. One can simply Google “Granite State Challenge.” He stated that the team had advanced to the final four. Mr. Buteau added that one team member had talked with Ms. Smith about getting “Final Four” sweatshirts for the team members. She is considering it. Mr. Buteau stated that the next match for Hollis/Brookline will air in January.
Mr. Kelley reported that 8-9 seniors had spoken to him about setting the date for graduation. He advised them that they should wait until just before February vacation. At that time, they will know more about snow dates. Mr. Kelley informed the Board that the reason the seniors wanting to know their graduation date was so they could book a quality graduation speaker.
Mr. Simons pointed out that Manchester ties down the Verizon Center for their graduation, and he wondered how they know the date. Supt. Pike responded that they must put in a cushion. He added that he was more comfortable with June 16th as the graduation date.
Chair. Murphy stated that he didn’t know why they couldn’t set the date, adding that when he went to school, they used the spring break as a buffer. If they needed to make up a couple of snow days, they would do it during spring break. Chair. Murphy added that if it came down to a make or break deal with a speaker the seniors really wanted to get, then they should come back to the Board right away.
Copies of the reports are available.
5. 2007-2008 BUDGET OVERVIEW
Ms. Goyette reported that the Middle School was in great shape. She stated that the 8th grade classes were a little high, but felt they should be ok next year.
Ms. Goyette informed the Board that she was beginning her 10th year at the Middle School, and she now felt that for the first time they have the opportunity to look long-term. She stated that she would like to implement a textbook rotation plan that would take them out to 2012. Technology was the other significant piece in her budget.
Ms. Goyette stated that there were no new staffing requests and/or issues.
Ms. Goyette reported that she had sat with Rich Raymond, Joe Gruce, and Carolyn Cicciu to discuss what the school needed. The following is what was determined:
1. WinSchool Server – needed to replace the student management system. It needs to be upgraded to allow staff use of the current WinSchool Student Information System.
2. ICT (Information and Communication Technologies) Server – needed to ensure that the ICT Literary assessments will be retrievable in the event of a hard drive failure, which is not possible at this time.
NH DOE mandates ICT Standards for different technology formats. One such format is video, which the Middle School currently does not have. Would like 5 machines that would be “mounted” onto mobile platform carts to be easily moved from classroom to classroom, allowing greater flexibility in their use.
The Middle School currently is not in compliance. Would like to implement a 3-year plan to get them into compliance.
Teachers have been asking for Inspiration, a planning/organizing program. Currently have 5 licenses. Would like to implement a multi-year plan to install Inspiration in all three labs, the two PFSE laptop carts, and teachers’ workstations.
Would like to implement a 5-year plan to replace the existing 250 desktops. Warranties will expire beginning 2008-09 school year. This would be 50 boxes, keyboard, and mice a year. The last 3 years would also add LCD panels.
Math textbooks are the biggest need. The last time 7th grade math texts were purchased was 1999. They no longer support GLES (Grade Level Expectations). Will need 230 texts that are directly aligned with the GLES to meet State Standards.
Approximately 70% of the 7th grade class will be ready for Algebra. The remaining 30% will need more formal work in pre-algebra. Need approximately 80 texts to support these students.
1. Server – Currently using an old desktop with NT Server installed. Need to purchase a dedicated server to efficiently interact with SAU 41 domain and have reliable back-up.
2. Copier – Need a basic machine providing single copies for media specialist and teachers.
SAU 41 additional testing tool initiative. Will provide immediate results for the teachers. For the 2007-08 year will need funds for half the training and one grade level. For the 2008-09 year, will need funds for the additional grade.
Looking to implement a long-term plan.
1. Build concrete walkway, bus drop off.
2. Clean chimney – never been done.
3. Replace floor stripping machine – current machine 20 years old, beyond repair.
4. Replace locker partitions (girls) – bent doors, do not close, hardware been replaced
1. Replace locker partitions (boys)
2. Replace room 112 (original lab) floor tiles.
1. Clean chimney.
2. Flush/clean roof drains.
~ Water Line
Water line is always an issue. Some year it will be a problem.
Chair. Murphy questioned the 3-year plan to get into compliance with licenses, and wondered where the Middle School currently stood. Ms. Goyette responded that Mr. Mehlhorn had come up with a creative solution that kept them within the letter of the law.
Mr. Enright asked if there was a book budget last year that would help accommodate the current needs. Ms. Goyette responded that there wasn’t.
Mr. Enright felt that a couple of the items on Ms. Goyette’s list could have been in the recent building project, such as the walkway. He felt it might be an opportunity to handle it that way. Ms. Goyette stated that she would look into it.
Chair. Murphy questioned the ITC. Ms. Mace responded that the State passed this mandate in July 2005. Chair. Murphy asked if there was funding for it. Ms. Mace responded that there wasn’t. She added that the State understands the large expectation, and thus, would like to see schools develop a plan.
Enrollment is currently at 892.
Estimated enrollment increase of 31 next year based upon the 8th grade class minus the 12th grade class, with an estimated enrollment of 900 for the 2008-09 school year, and 897 for the 2009-2010 school year.
· Part-time position to address Math, English and Social Studies
It is estimated that there will be 30-50 move-ins, which is a concern as one looks at the numbers the years ahead.
Currently, the numbers for the following courses are:
Course # of Sections Average # of Students/Section
Cultural Geography 10 24
US History 7 25
English 9 and 9 Accelerated 10 24
Writing 12 23
US Literature 4 27
AP English 5 21
Honors Literature 2 26
Chemistry 9 97% capacity
Physical Science 9 93% capacity
Accelerated Biology 5 100% capacity
· School to Careers
Would like to increase the position above the current 28 hours/week. Sandy Demarest was hired over the summer. Feel it is a win-win position, as it could provide more educational opportunities without the need of a classroom.
· Athletic Director
Would like to increase to full-time position and address class size issue in science (1.0 FTE Science). The High School currently offers 28 varsity and 14 sub-varsity sports. The High School is the only Class I school in the State in which the AD is not full-time.
The current AD teaches 3 classes, which is 0.6 FTE.
· Part-time nurse – SAU wide
It is recommended that there be 1 nurse per 750 students. The High School currently has one nurse for 900 students. It is recommended to hire a part-time nurse to be housed at the High School and would be available for substituting for the nurse at other district-wide schools.
· 504 Coordinator
Currently, at 0.5 FTE. May need a part-time counselor, and the 504 Coordinator could pick this up.
Mr. Simons questioned how having a full-time AD would help with class sizes if he is pulled out of teaching science. Mr. Kelley responded that they would hire a full-time science teacher, so the science position would go from 0.6 FTE to 1.0 FTE, thus helping class size.
Mr. Enright questioned how they could hire more staff when there is no place to put them. He added that he wouldn’t support a full-time AD position. He didn’t believe that the other ADs in the State had full-time assistants. He then asked that Mr. Kelley prioritize between the AD, part-time nurse, and 504 Coordinator, as he did not feel that Mr. Kelley would get them all. Mr. Kelley responded that he did have more data regarding the AD position that he could present at a later date.
· Additional printers for classroom use throughout the building are the biggest priority.
· Smart boards (electronic white boards) – looking to add one each year
· Wireless technology
· 3 laptop carts (25 each) – have two in the building w/ 20 computers on it. Felt should go to 25. Felt this was a good way to have the program grow without taxing square footage in the building.
Would like to get onto a rotation schedule.
· Science: $17,000 – Accelerated Biology; Chemistry
Last year’s budget was trying to make up for two years of scrambling for texts.
~ New programs
· New courses: Estimate of $2500 each for textbooks and materials:
o Calculus 2
o Algebra 3
· Concerns regarding resources for the ICT mandate from the State.
In the past, meeting the requirements at the Middle School level was allowed, now, however, there is a high school requirement for graduation.
· Business Department
Wasn’t funded last year. Need to resurrect it. Like to see it grow. New courses – Intro to Business and Business Law.
· Freshman Team
Reduce class assignment from 5 to 4 (0.8 FTE)
Staff is putting in a lot of planning time to make this work. Have asked for class reduction to help make it work, however, class reduction costs money.
· Grade 9/10 Reading Class
Allow the Grade 9/10 Reading Class to become an additional class to the Grade 9 English class and have a reading specialist teach it.
· NEWA testing
Pilot at grade 9.
· Develop a transition program within Special Education
This program would help transition Special Education students into the work force. Have several special education students that will be with the school until they are 21.
~ Building Repairs and Construction
· Classroom and cafeteria addition. The issues presented last year are the same. Regular classrooms are scheduled at 97% capacity. If hire a new teacher, they would have classroom space for only 3 out of 7 periods.
· Shortage of office, storage and conference rooms.
Only have two conference rooms, which is problematic with Special Education, and meetings with parents throughout the day.
· Portables – will need if can’t move on the construction issue.
· Replace carpet with tile.
Long overdue. Need to attack the big classrooms and office space.
· Air conditioning in Library
Losing high-powered computers (20) due to lack of air conditioning.
· Finish 3rd floor renovation – Room 373 – needs cabinetry.
~ Equipment and Furniture
· Increased enrollment demand for desks, chairs, and cafeteria tables. (» $8000)
· Teacher lab desk in science room. (» $2200)
· New copier
Need something to address the building’s needs. (» $1200/yr. Lease)
Mr. Peterson asked if there was a complete inventory listing of assets and how old they are. Ms. Capasso responded that they did with copiers because they lease them from Conway.
Mr. Simons asked what a Riso was. Mr. Kelley responded that it was a copy machine that could make 100-1000 copies at a high quality and low price. The Riso on the campus doesn’t work well.
Mr. Enright asked about the teachers on the Freshman Team. Mr. Kelley responded that there are 4 teachers on a team – math, science, English, and social studies. Periods 1 – 4 they teach freshman classes. Period 5 is planning time. Period 6 or 7, they teach outside the freshman class.
Mr. Enright stated that he was not in favor of reducing their class assignment. He also felt that adding new courses was problematic when they need to deal with the core courses. Mr. Kelley stated that with Ecology, they wanted to take environmental science and split it up. British Literature, there is a scheduling issue. He added that before they would offer any new course, they would put it through the magnifying glass. He pointed out that last year courses were cut as it was felt they were not justified to run.
Forrest Milkowski, Chair. Coop Budget Committee, pointed out that there was an expected influx of students next year. In terms of space usage, the High School was at 97% capacity. Mr. Milkowski questioned, regardless of course offerings, where they would put the students and if they hire a new teacher, where they would put that person. Mr. Kelley responded that the new schedule helped with space usage this year. He pointed out that they currently are not using the cafeteria for study periods, as they have in the past. Increasing the School to Careers program would schedule students for internships, etc, which would not use classroom space. Algebra classes could be put into labs. The Library has a classroom, which could be used, but would reduce the Library space by 1/3.
Mr. Kelley stated that in regards to programs, he had been asked to come up with programs that would take the school from good to great.
Mr. Peterson complimented Mr. Kelley on his scheduling classroom space, especially with the new schedule. Mr. Peterson questioned when Mr. Kelley would evaluate whether the Freshman Team was successful or not, and wondered if there would be plans to do it across the whole class. Mr. Kelley responded that he would like to look at it the beginning of the second semester. Mr. Peterson asked what the benefits were to not having it across the whole class. Mr. Kelley responded that it allowed them to have a control group, something to measure against as to whether the plan and schedule were good or not. He added that they may need to run the pilot program for two years in order to get a really good assessment.
Greg d’Arbonne, Budget Committee member, stated that he was proud of the students’ education and complimented the staff. He then asked what the total cost was of everything Mr. Kelley had asked for. Mr. Kelley responded that he did not have the total cost at that point. He stated he knew he would have to prioritize. He added that he would look at each and get a dollar figure. Mr. d’Arbonne stated that the carpeting issue could be spread over several years. The classroom/cafeteria issue would be a separate warrant article. He felt that some of the requests had merit. He felt seniors going into the workforce, and the business courses were good. He saw the value of an initiative that prepares students for life.
Mr. Kelley stated that he wanted to make it clear that the space issues needed to be addressed. He wished that last year’s cafeteria proposal had been presented as a classroom proposal. He pointed out that they don’t have office space for teachers. When the school was built, each teacher had their own classroom. Now two teachers share a classroom, so while one teacher is teaching, the other is in the classroom doing prep work. He added that the new schedule did not create any new space issues, but actually helped the space issues.
Mr. Peterson asked if on the Space Usage Report, the figures were actual current classes. Mr. Kelley responded that they were, adding that he took out Special Education classrooms.
6. SPECIAL EDUCATION
Mr. Kelly reported that he had gone to the Hollis Brookline Cooperative Budget Committee meeting the previous night and shared the following:
· Special Education Process Review
· Projected Year Budget Development Process
· Special Education Revenue Estimates: 2006-2007
Mr. Kelly stated that developing a budget for Special Education does not go by percentages, but rather is very case specific. He stated that he also talked about paraprofessional needs and transitions; professional staffing; Out-of-District placements; projected costs known in October; and new student impact.
Mr. Kelly stated that there had been a number of transfers over the summer with significant needs, therefore requiring expenditures.
Mr. Kelly then presented his overview for the projected 2007-08 Budget.
~ Programs and Personnel
· Life Skills Program
o At the Middle School to help transition to 9th grade.
o Expand at the High School for post-secondary training and job coaching.
o Transition Middle School position (0.6 FTE) - add 0.2 FTE?
· Speech and Language Services
Service and hours needed are high at the younger ages. It is common to see more at the elementary school. For a number of years, have had 1.0 FTE for the Coop (Middle and High School), who was also used for evaluations, writing IEPs, as well as teaching. He stated that he anticipates an increase in service hours, and is looking at a speech assistant who could provide speech services, but wouldn’t be able to do evaluations.
Chair. Murphy questioned the student population growing and having an affect on Special Education. Mr. Kelly responded that the increase in Special Education was due to an increase in the number of service hours needed to give service to the population.
· Occupational Therapy Services
Currently at 0.4 FTE. Due to population transition, need 0.2 FTE additional hours for the current position.
· Remedial Reading
Currently, the Middle School has two remedial reading regular education teachers who conduct small classes. The High School has none. Looking to address this need at the High School again. 1.0 FTE
· Paraprofessional Support
There are no 1-on-1s at the 12th grade. There are 5 coming into 7th grade from the two elementary systems. Currently looking at all students who use 1-on-1s to see if some students may no longer need that support.
· Special Education District Coordination
With 148-150 Special Education students, currently assessing the need for a part-time coordinator to address the number of weekly meetings, grades 7-12.
· Alpha Smart keyboards with writing programs
Students can utilize written expressions, then they can be transferred to a computer. Cost is $3,000 for the Alpha Board and the writing program that goes with it.
There is an enormous amount of documentation with Special Education. Currently, getting rid of the triple-copy forms, but need multiple hard copies, therefore high photocopy demand.
Mr. Kelly stated that he and Ms. Mace are continuing discussions on evaluations and monitoring students’ progress.
Mr. Milkowski asked about directed study. Mr. Kelley responded that directed study is held in small rooms. Even if directed study was not being held there, they could not use the rooms for a classroom, as they are too small. He added that with the addition of the 504 program this year, it reduced the numbers in directed study.
Mr. Milkowski pointed out that there often is a surplus, and wondered when there is a surplus in the 1200 account, can that money be allocated to anything else, or is it constrained by RSAs? Can the funds be allocated at the end of the year? Ms. Capasso responded that the District is held to a bottom-line budget.
Mr. d’Arbonne asked that if there was a surplus in Special Education, could it be used to cover costs in other parts of the budget. Ms. Capasso responded that the funds could be used to pay for other line items in the budget.
Mr. Milkowski questioned line item 510 – Special Education Transportation and wondered if this included fuel. Ms. Capasso responded that the 2700 line items captured all fuel costs.
Mr. Milkowski stated that he would like to have a way to evaluate service hours in terms of cost; some way of understanding the amount of hours and cost. He felt this would help to understand how a department budgets, and would give an indication of efficiency.
Supt. Pike asked if the Budget Committee had taken an official position yet as to whether Special Education would fall inside or outside of the goal set by the Committee. Mr. Milkowski responded that they hadn’t taken a position yet, but added that he was thinking that it would be outside of the box. Mr. d’Arbonne agreed.
Chair. Murphy asked if the Committee knew when they would have a figure for the Board. Mr. Milkowski felt they would probably use the same formula as last year. Chair. Murphy pointed out that the Board usually has a sense of guidance by August. Mr. Milkowski responded that they still needed the student population figure as well as the cost of living figure. He stated that the Committee would be meeting November 6th. Chair. Murphy pointed out that budget binders with numbers will be distributed at the Board’s November meeting, therefore they needed that information.
Mr. Peterson pointed out that the number of students being served is not a good indicator of the number of service hours. He felt that the number of service hours per category (however they want to break the categories down) would help. He added that the Board needed to know what the drivers were.
Chair. Murphy asked where in the budget was the breakdown for Special Education legal fees. Mr. Kelly responded that they fell under “consultation.” Ms. Capasso added that they were in a district-wide legal category, but they may want to look at breaking them out. Chair. Murphy stated that when he looks at the Special Education costs, he would like to see what affects it – transportation and legal fees are big drivers.
Supt. Pike stated that they have a lot of legal consultations regarding out-of-district placements. He wondered if they were recoverable. Mr. Kelly responded that there wasn’t any advantage to put a legal line item into Special Education. In the past years, legal fees have been miniscule and not pertaining to students.
7. DIRECTOR OF CURRICULUM’S REPORT
Ms. Mace distributed her report, and informed the Board that they were investigating the adoption of Northwest Evaluation Association (NWEA) Measures of Academic Progress (MAP) to use district-wide. These tests are computerized, untimed, adaptive assessments. Ms. Mace explained that the tests are tailored to each individual student’s achievement level. As a student answers questions correctly, the following questions get more difficult. If a student answers a question incorrectly, then the following questions get easier. This continues until the student’s answers get to the 50-50 mark, that is, 50% right, 50% wrong. Ms. Mace stated that the results of the tests are immediate.
Subjects for the NWEAs include Reading, Language, and Math (standard), and Science (optional). Grades 2 – 10 may be tested, and can be phased in. It is suggested that a pilot program first be run. The test may be given up to 4 times a year, but typically are given twice a year, in the fall and in the spring.
The cost of the tests are based upon a percentage of student enrollment tested as follows:
Tier I 0 – 50% $13.50 per student
Tier II 50 – 65% $13.00 per student
Tier III 65%+ $12.50 per student
There is a first year mandatory one-day training, which costs $3,550 (includes travel), with follow-up training at a cost of $3,950 per session. The three follow-up sessions are recommended one each year.
Using these figures, the total cost would be:
2007-2008 Pilot program $10,030 (One grade level at the Middle School, and one grade level at the High School.)
2008-2009 »$20,000 (Different tier, so the cost of the tests goes down, but cost of training goes up.)
2009 - »$12,500 (Cost of training goes down.)
February 12th is an early release day, and a consultant for NWEA is scheduled for a meeting with the elementary staff, and selected Middle School and High School staff. In the evening, there will be a presentation to the Hollis School Board, to which Coop Board members and Brookline Board members are invited.
Mr. Peterson stated that data driven assessment is required, however, the most important issue is not how much the assessment costs, but rather, if the District has the where-with-all to do something with the data. Ms. Mace responded that that is where the training comes in. There is a limit of 100 participants in the training sessions, so the first year elementary staff will be trained, then the second year the Middle School and High School staff will be trained.
Mr. d’Arbonne asked if the NWEA testing was separate from the State testing, and in addition to. Ms. Mace responded that it was.
Mr. Enright felt this was a great tool for placement, but wondered what else they would be getting out of it. Ms. Goyette responded that it would support Special Education, and give direct information as to where the student is. It will also help with differentiated instruction. Teachers take a lot of time in assessment. This is done in 45 minutes, and the results are immediate.
Ms. Mace reminded the Board that the NWEAs were simply another tool for assessment, which would complement what the District already does.
Mr. Kelley stated that the NWEAs were a good investment of time. They can test at the beginning and at the end of the school year to see how much a student has grown over the year.
Chair. Murphy asked if the District had the computer equipment needed to administer the NWEAs. Ms. Mace responded that they did, but the logistics will be tricky, and that is why they want to start out with a pilot program.
Mr. Milkowski asked if the NWEAs were contractually based, or if they were self-subscribed. Ms. Mace responded that if they sign up for it, they can test 4 times a year. If they don’t like it, they don’t have to do it the next year. Mr. Milkowski asked if the District signs up for 230 students, but decided they only want to test 100 students, are they still paying for 230 students? Ms. Mace stated that she would have to find out.
Mr. Peterson asked if Ms. Goyette and/or Mr. Kelley talked with other principals whose schools have used the NWEAs. Ms. Goyette responded that she had, and they loved it. Mr. Kelley responded that he hadn’t, adding that he only saw the High School administering it to the Freshmen and the Sophomores. Ms. Goyette added that the presentation she went to was impressive.
8. BUSINESS ADMINISTRATOR’S REPORT
Mr. Enright stated that when they receive the budget next month, he would like to see placeholders for those items that they don’t have figures for yet. Ms. Capasso stated that she was with Mr. Enright on that issue, and will use placeholders.
Supt. Pike felt they should put placeholders on the items the Administrators were asking for, then they could prioritize. Mr. Enright stated that he would not do it that way. Chair. Murphy felt that that didn’t make sense as they don’t need a Board meeting to say the budget is at a 9% increase. Supt. Pike responded that the Administrators would then be cutting some items. Mr. d’Arbonne stated that the Administrators may cut some items that the Board members may not want cut. Chair. Murphy felt that the Administrators knew better what to cut than he did. Mr. Peterson agreed, adding that if they really wanted something, they could hold it out as a separate budget item.
Supt. Pike felt it only made sense for the Administrators to know what the bottom line budget number was. Mr. Milkowski responded that he needed the population figure for 2007-2008, and also needed the cost of living figure. He added that the Committee would get them a number soon.
Ms. Goyette pointed out that the High School and the Middle School do their budgets separately, so they don’t know what the final percentage is until the two budgets are put together.
Chair. Murphy stated that they needed the Administrators to come back with their first pass, and not at 9%. Ms. Goyette stated that this was the first time that she had come in with a long range plan. If she cut items out, then they won’t be able to maintain the building and programs, and the same will happen at the Middle School as happened at the High School.
Mr. Enright stated that he didn’t want to see the budgets come in at 4-5% because they still had the contract part of the budget, which is at 3%. Therefore, coming in with a budget of 4% is really 7%. Chair. Murphy stated that he was looking for 2 – 2.5%.
Mr. Kelley stated that if the student population goes up 3.5%, and he can only increase the budget by 2.5%, then his program is going to go down, and he will be working in a negative. Therefore, what is offered next year may be less than this year. Mr. Milkowski stated that the population increase was factored in last year, and will be again this year. Mr. Kelley felt that the CPI was less than the professional contracts, therefore they were already in a negative.
Mr. d’Arbonne stated that 11 years ago, the student population was 360 with a staff of 45. Today, the student population is 892 with a staff of 135. To keep the same ratio as 11 years ago, the staff should be at 110.
9. PRINCIPALS’ REPORTS - continued
Ms. Goyette reported that everything was in her written report. She did add that 217 students made it to the top of Mt. Monadnock.
10. SUPERINTENDENT’S REPORT
Supt. Pike stated that originally Christine Page had been hired for the 504 Coordinator’s position, but resigned effective September 29, 2006. Peter Taylor was hired to take Ms. Page’s place, but he resigned on September 29, 2006. Supt. Pike was now nominating Margaret Erskine for the 0.5 FTE 504 Coordinator’s position. Her salary will be $29,710, pro-rated to $25,419.
Mr. Kelley stated that Ms. Erskine had retired from Special Education, and was coming on-board as the 504 Coordinator. He added that he had worked with her in the past, and that she knows both Special Education law and 504 law. Mr. Kelley informed the Board that Christine Page had done a lot for the transition with Mr. Taylor, and has agreed to help with the transition of Ms. Erskine.
Steve Simons moved that the Board approve the nomination of Margaret Erskine for the 0.5 FTE 504 Coordinator position, with a salary of $29,710, pro-rated to $25,419. Tom Enright seconded. Motion carried unanimously. 4 – 0 – 0.
11. POLICY REVIEW
Policy GDQA – Reduction in Support Staff Work Force ~ Second Reading
Mr. Simons stated that this was the second reading for Policy GDQA. There were two minor corrections needed: the word “position” in the last and next to last paragraph needed to be changed to “positions.”
Steve Simons moved that the Board approve Policy GDQA – Reduction in Support Staff Work Force for second reading with the two minor changes of the word “position” in the last and next to last paragraph being changed to “positions. Dan Peterson seconded. Motion carried unanimously. 4 – 0 – 0.
12. COMMITTEE REPORTS
Chair. Murphy reported that the Apportionment Committee continues to meet. They meet twice a month. They will be holding a public information forum in November, and hope to get input from the voters. The Committee will meet the week before Thanksgiving, and then hold a workshop meeting the first week of December. The Committee will then move on to a final decision, and take it to the State Board of Education.
Mr. Enright asked Supt. Pike to check with NH School Boards Association for student population numbers.
13. HIGH SCHOOL CLASSROOM AND CAFETERIA EXPANSION PLAN
Chair. Murphy stated that the Board needed to put a proposal together to take to the District Meeting that will be well supported. He added that they needed to pull out what they had last year.
Mr. Peterson stated that the Board first needed to make a decision as to whether they want to put an expansion plan on the Warrant.
Mr. Enright felt that after the night’s presentation, the Board would be derelict if they didn’t. He pointed out that Mr. Kelley had no room to maneuver.
Chair. Murphy stated that he did not feel that enrollment would go down for a long time. Mr. Peterson responded that the Hollis Strategic Planning Committee shows no significant growth until the year 2011. He stated that the question of whether space was tight or not was “yes,” and does it handicap Mr. Kelley, “yes,” but he wasn’t sure they should do it when the issue of apportionment was also on the Warrant this year. Chair. Murphy felt that the Board needed to put it before the voters. Mr. Enright felt the same.
Mr. Peterson stated that if they didn’t get the bond passed, they will need portables. Chair. Murphy felt that they needed two warrant articles: one warrant article for construction, a second warrant article for portables.
Mr. Peterson stated that he was not convinced that they should put a bond article on the Warrant. He added that apportionment will be highly volatile, and he felt that it will speed the dissolution of the Coop. Mr. Enright stated that even if they go down the road of dissolution, it would be a 5 – 10 year process, and it would start at the Middle School.
Mr. Peterson felt that the combination of apportionment and the discussion of keeping the Coop would pre-empt any bond discussions.
Chair. Murphy felt that the only issue was “do we have a need for more classroom/cafeteria space.”
Mr. Enright stated that the last time apportionment came up, the Committee came in with an 80-20 formula, and the floor said “no” and settled on 75-25.
Mr. Simons felt that the Board would be derelict if they had a need for classrooms and didn’t bring it forward.
Supt. Pike stated that the Board needed to be proactive as to the value of the Coop. Mr. Peterson did not feel that it was the Coop Board’s duty to push the Coop.
Mr. Enright stated that the fact that they would be running flat for the next few years would not be good for either town to dissolve the Coop.
Chair. Murphy agreed that it was a difficult time to address the bond, but agreed with Mr. Enright that they must address the space issue.
Mr. Enright added that last year’s voting results were good, they just didn’t get the needed 2/3 vote, but it was a strong majority.
Chair. Murphy felt they should not let apportionment hold them back from presenting a bond article.
Supt. Pike stated that last year there was a need for more space, and next year the enrollment will be going up, so he wondered why that need wasn’t still there.
Mr. Peterson stated that the big enrollment increase was this year, and to Mr. Kelley’s credit, he made it work. Therefore, Mr. Peterson was not sure that it was “broken.”
Chair. Murphy asked how, as a Board, they should process this. Mr. Enright stated that they needed a separate time to work through this, then eventually, take a vote.
Mr. Peterson stated that they would need to get the cost of increase for the plans last year. Mr. Simons stated that he would talk to Hutter about it.
It was decided to hold a workshop meeting:
November 1, 2006 at 6:00 p.m. Location to be determined.
Issues to be covered are: the bond issue; appointing a candidate for the vacant Board seat.
Steve Simons moved that the Board adopt Policy GDQA – Reduction in Support Staff Work Force, as previously approved for second reading. Dan Peterson seconded. Motion carried unanimously. 4 – 0 – 0.
Tom Enright moved that the Board enter non-public session under the provisions of RSA 91-A:3 II (e) pending or threatened litigation. Dan Peterson seconded. A roll call vote was taken with all members present voting in the affirmative. 4 - 1 - 0.
The Board entered non-public at 10:55 p.m.
The Board entered public session at 11:10 p.m.
Dan Peterson moved that the Board adjourn. Steve Simons seconded. Motion carried unanimously. 4 – 0 – 0.
The meeting adjourned at 11:12 p.m.