Public Meeting Minutes: February 20, 2017 at 5:00 PM - Work Session Regular Meeting


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February 20, 2017 at 5:00 PM - Work Session Regular Meeting Minutes

February 20, 2017 at 5:00 PM - Work Session Regular Meeting
I. Work Session
I.A. Call to Order
I.B. Roll Call of Board
I.C. Pledge of Allegiance
I.D. Presentations
I.D.1. North Park Presentation

North Park Principal Bob Hausmann said the theme for this year is “Sailing to Success.” He said everyone votes on the theme for the year, and it must be centered around a way to recognize positive behavior. There are sailing to success tickets, and if students follow school rules, they can get a ticket. Each month the classrooms have their own sails, and as kids are given tickets, they put it on their sail. At the end of the month an assembly is held. There is a ship that has a bar graph showing how many tickets the whole school earned for the month. Hausmann said the major focus is on positive behavior. He said the staff tries to do four times more positive praises versus corrective comments. Another thing they focus on is how consequences should be related, reasonable and respectful. He said teachers are trying to connect reteaching with the skill. They try to identify what skill is missing and practice that skill. Hausmann said it is very encouraging to watch the positive behavior enforcement happening.

Mr. Hausmann said the demographics have changed at North Park. When he came in 2003, there were 271 students and 37 percent were living in poverty, and now there are 375 students and 68 percent are living in poverty. There are 224 ELL students but only 97 still qualify for ELL support. Hausmann said the students are showing high numbers in Dibels testing when they are in the younger grades, but as they get older, there is a steady decline in proficiency. He said the goal is to figure out how to keep the numbers that are high in lower grades higher in the upper grades. The students are doing well on NeSA testing in the third grade. They scored 97 percent proficient in reading and 97 percent in math in 2015-16. In the fourth grade, the students scored 85 percent in reading; 66 percent in math and 65 percent in writing. Hausmann said math and writing dip a little from last year. In the fifth grade, they were 83 percent proficient in reading, 61 percent in math, and 68 percent in science.

Hausmann said staff has been focused on the Super 7 in Marzano's Framework for Instruction. He said this framework is based on the art and science of teaching that correlates instructional strategies to student achievement and grounded on experimental/control studies to establish a direct causal link between elements of the model and student results. Hausmann said there are 42 elements, but the staff decided to focus on 7.

1. Establishing classroom routines – Helps create a comfortable environment for students. Teachers need to identify what activities need routines. It helps if staff can give a definition as to why it is important and why it is used. Some examples include: getting and collecting materials, responding together, and attention getters.

2. Demonstrating Withitness – Students know what to expect, and they are prepared for what is to come. The idea is to catch students doing good things. In the past, teachers used a clip when students did negative behavior, and now it is for positive behavior. When students do something positive, they put their clip on the sign that shows what they did.

3. Identifying Critical Content – The idea is for teachers to prepare students to know when something important is coming up. If done correctly, this will benefit both the teachers and students. In some cases, the teachers identify critical content by selecting vocabulary terms that are essential for students and connected to the learning goals. They use explicit instruction to teach those words.

4. Chunking Content into Digestible Bites – When doing this, it helps to give students time to digest or understand the lesson by having a discussion and doing other things.

5. Providing Clear Learning Goals and Performance Scales – These are things that teachers should continually bring up, so students know what it is and how it works. There is a performance scale that is used and it runs from 0 to 4. These things help keep the kids focused.

6.  Practicing Skills, Strategies and Process – In these situations instead of just explaining it to the students, the teacher walks around and makes sure they understand, and if they are not doing it correctly to show them how to do it right, so they learn the correct way. There are often a variety of practices where things are added on. There is fluency practice and by doing it on their own, they feel confident.  The teacher will often show the students how to work through the problem and tell them what they are thinking as they do the problem.

7. Managing Response Rates – This framework will help maintain students’ engagement. There are ways to do this by using signals, random names, and wait time to give students time to think about answer, and paired responses. This framework tries to stay away from one kid answering a question and being called on because his or her hand is up. This is a way of trying to get all kids engaged all the time. The idea is to try to get more kids to respond.  


I.E. Regular Board Meeting Information

Surplus equipment – Executive Director of Business Operations Dave Melick said it is time to purge some materials. These items are being declared surplus, so the district can get rid of them.

Negotiated agreement – The meeting with CEA went well. Melick said there was good conversation with teachers and some very reasonable requests. They settled with a good package on both sides of the issues. The total package will increase by 3.77 percent. Insurance will be $665 a month for a $900 deductible, and the health insurance cost is about $608. Melick said they will receive about $350 dollars additional dollars for the lower deductible and a little more for the higher deductible. There will also be a health savings account where money can be placed tax-free. With a health savings account, a person can carry over money, and if the person dies, the money will go to his or her beneficiaries. There can be up to $6,750 a year placed in a health savings account and if a person is over 55 an additional $1,000 can be put in. Melick said there would be someone to come to talk to staff about this new benefit.

Surplus property – Executive Director of Building Operations and Technology Leonard Kwapnioski said on March 4 the district will hold a garage sale/silent auction. He said the silent auction will be for the larger items like the automotive lifts, garage doors and some of the manufacturing equipment. Kwapnioski said there is a person who is looking at the manufacturing equipment to set a base price. When a person comes in he or she will be given a sheet to make a silent auction bid. The bids will close at 10:30 a.m. and the person with the highest bid will get the item. Kwapnioski said the items must be paid for when a person leaves, and everything that is bought must be removed by March 10 at 5 p.m. He said this is a short timeline because the contractor wants to get started on the construction right away. He said some items will be given to the middle school if they need them. There are 350 items on the list. Kwapnioski said it will be a busy day for the garage sale. He said he plans to advertise it on the Website, Facebook, Twitter, Chamber and any other free online posting. He said he is also going to be talking to the radio station for putting it on as a community service announcement for a nonprofit.  Kwapnioski said the equipment has done very well for the high school. He said if anyone is interested in coming out to help, they are welcome.

Roof – There is about 18,000 square feet of the north gym roof that must be redone. Kwapnioski said the district wants to switch to a fully adhered roof, but there will need to be an engineer involved. This new roof should be longer lasting than the old one. The project also includes a redesign of the roof drains. He said this roof has never been fixed. Kwapnioski said to fix the roof as it is now will cost around $150,000 if the rock is kept. Money has been budgeted for this in the strategic plan.

CMS will needs to hire five positions – two in language arts, two in math and one in music. One of the physical education teachers will move from the elementary level. The process to fill these positions will be internal at first.

Alternates 1, 2 and 5 for the conversion of the high school to a middle school. Alternative 1 is in the south gym. It will include replacing the floor and putting in a new floor. Some of the other work includes removing the basketball hoops, painting, and adding new lighting. Superintendent Dr. Troy Loeffelholz said it will be interesting when the floor is removed because it is the original one from 1958, and there is a four-foot crawl space underneath it. Alternative 2 is in the north gym. This floor is from 1974 and has never been sanded down. Some of the flooring will be replaced, and the bleachers will be moved from the north side to the south side. There will also be curtains added, so there can be four classes going on at once. Alternative 5 is the conversion of west bleachers in the south gym to a weight room. The bleachers will be taken out, two stairwells put in and a handicap lift. Dr. Loeffelholz said the lower level bleachers would stay. He said the district is trying to reuse cabinets as much as possible. He said they would also use a lot of the stock from the new high school for the remodeled areas of the old high school. There is also some paint that can be used. He said an inventory is being completed to see what is left over from the high school project.  He said the contractor would see what can be used for the conversion of the high school to middle school. 

II. Executive Session
Discussion:  The board did not go into executive session. 
III. Adjourn

The board adjourned at 6:15 p.m.

IV. Board Meeting
IV.A. Call to Order
IV.B. Roll Call of Board
IV.C. Pledge of Allegiance
IV.D. Notice of Open Meeting Posted
IV.D.1. President insures all can hear proceedings
IV.E. Mission Statement
Discussion:  Doug Willoughby read the mission statement. 
IV.F. Opportunity for Public to be Heard
Discussion:  No one spoke to the board.
IV.G. Board Special Functions
IV.G.1. Administer Oath of Office to Tim Pospisil
IV.G.2. Option Enrollment Resolution, 2017-2018 / Student-Within-Transfers, 2017-2018

Dr. Loeffelholz said all grades levels are open to option enrollment unless the district sets a cutoff number.  The cutoff number for grades K-4 will be 275 students. This means that second, third and fourth grades are already closed, and at the secondary level, seventh and twelfth grades areclo sed.

The maximum number for grades 5-12 will be 290 students. Dr. Loeffelholz said once the student is accepted, he or she can remain at CPS until he or she graduates.  He said the same is true if a student transfers to a different school. Even if that grade is over capacity, the student will remain.  The guideline for in district transfers is a 19:1 student to teacher ratio in grades K-2 and 23:1 in all others. Dr. Loeffelholz said if the school is at the ratio, it is up to the building principal if they want to take the additional student. If a sibling already attends CPS, any younger brothers and sisters will automatically be accepted. Dr. Loeffelholz said if all the students moved back to their home school, there would be no room at some buildings. If an option is approved, the student may not be put at the school requested, but they will be allowed in CPS.

IV.G.3. Middle School Construction Alternates
IV.H. Recognitions


IV.H.1. Board Correspondence

Dr. Loeffelholz shared with the board some thank you notes. 

IV.I. Presentations
IV.I.1. Educational Service Unit 7 Presentation

Every other year ESU 7 goes out and makes a presentation to the schools in their area. ESUs were created by state statue 50 years ago. An ESU has three functions: professional development, technology and media. The board was invited to attend ESU 7’s open house in August. The production department at ESU 7 has made 7 million copies for CPS. The copies are picked up two times a day and taken to CPS buildings. A print order can be sent to ESU in the morning and will usually be back at end of the day. Most of media services are now online. There are 12 members on the ESU 7 board. 

IV.J. Items to be removed from the Consent Agenda
Discussion:  There were no items removed from the consent agenda. 
IV.K. Consent Agenda

Dr. Loeffelholz said he and Mr. Melick did meet with staff about the Temporary Early Retirement Incentive Plan, and they have until March 13 to decide if they want to retire or not. Brittany Madden is the new speech and language pathologist that was hired. Executive Director of Student Services/Special Education Jason Harris said he posted the job in September, but had no one apply. He asked the board to grant this new person 7 years of experience instead of the usual five that is recommended because it is a hard to fill position. Harris said Madden and her husband are living in Arizona and want to move back Columbus. He said there are districts across the state that can't find anyone. Dr. Loeffelholz said there has been a lot of movement in classified positions.

IV.K.1. Approval of Minutes
IV.K.2. Certified Personnel
IV.K.3. Classified Personnel
IV.K.4. Professional Travel
IV.L. Acceptance of Gifts/Donations

The total contributions from the Foundation, Band Boosters, Sports Boosters, Lost Creek PTO, Centennial PAC, Alumni, Emerson PTO, North Park PTO, West Park PTO and CMS PAC was $172,732.48. The Anchor has been moved to the new high school. The next step will be selling benches and bricks. There have been three links sold, six benches and 80 bricks. 

IV.M. Business Operations and Human Relations
IV.M.1. Financial Reports M2, M3, M4a
IV.M.2. Financial Report M4b

Seipel Repair Inc. was paid $524.24 for a variety of repair services on vehicles.

IV.M.3. Financial Report M5

Melick said the $42,500 expense to Gene Steffy Ford was for the new pickup truck. The truck includes a toolbox and snow blade. He said the $22,000 paid to Ozanam was for BIST training. This is the behavior strategy used by the district, and this company is helping to train staff. Melick said each building gets a day a month with the consultants.  

IV.M.4. Administrative Functions
IV.M.4.1. Surplus Property Requests

Melick said these items are being cleaned out of the high school since the staff is moving. He said there is a lot of athletic equipment and books on this list. He said he will try to get some money for the outdated instructional materials, and if there isn’t any value, these books will be disposed of.

IV.M.4.2. Approval of 5 FTE Certified Positions at Columbus Middle School

Hiring two language art teachers and two math teachers, allows for smaller class sizes in the seventh and eighth grades. Getting schedules of elementary music teachers teach the fifth graders music has been a challenge, so an additional person must be hired. CMS Principal Amy Haynes said she has been short handed in the seventh and eighth grades in language arts and math for numerous years. 

IV.M.4.3. Approval of the Master Agreement and Salary/Benefit Package between the Columbus Education Association and the CPS Board of Education for the 2017-18 school year.

The base salary increased from $35,880 to $36,480. The benefits also reflect a dual option plan for a health savings account, and $10 a month more for the insurance stipend. Melick said there were also several addition positions added to the extra duties assignments such as elementary student council sponsors, robotics coaches at both CHS and CMS, FCCLA sponsor and HOSA sponsor. The amount of salaries and benefits if all the teachers stay and move on the pay scale would be $802,855.  Melick said with 10 of the schools in the CPS array that have contracts settled, CPS is in the top four with salary and benefits. Seipel said the negotiations were very cordial. She said the package increase was as generous as the board could be.

IV.M.5. Updates

Melick said he would like to set up a time to talk to board members Pospisil and Willoughby about the business management part of the district. There were 20 staff eligible for the early retirement offer and Melick has received four applications to date. He said all of the early retirement applications will be approved at the March meeting. Melick said Lunchtime Solutions established a goal for the year. He said they have exceeded the goal and served 2,805 lunches per day, and last year 2,470 lunches per day were served. Melick said even with juniors being added this year, they are still serving more kids than last year. Breakfast has met the goal in all months but the increase is not as high as lunch. Melick said CPS administration as well as Lunchtime Solutions are both pleased with the numbers. He said Lunchtime Solutions staff are thrilled that the kids are eating well-rounded meals. A lunch survey was done in all of the buildings. There were 10 questions asked. The survey was given to fourth and fifth graders at the elementary level, and all students at the high school and middle school were eligible to take it. On all charts, the food service staff are nice scored the highest. The lowest rated questions at all levels were that students don’t have enough time to eat lunch. Melick said an advisory committee will review the results to find out more information. He said the investments and partnership with Lunchtime Solutions so far has paid off. The scores for the quality of food were also generally high. 

IV.N. Buildings & Sites/Technology
IV.N.1. Administrative Functions
IV.N.1.1. Approval of Engineering Contract for High School North Gym Roof

Kwapnioski said the total cost of the contract is $20,850. He said the district is trying to change the roof. Dr. Loeffelholz said the district is lucky to have Dan Keiter and RVW to work with on projects because they look out for the district. 

IV.N.2. Updates
Discussion:  All the requirements by the state fire marshal have been met at Duncan School. He said the tech staff has been spending a lot of time at the new high school getting the basic network up and running. Teachers have been out moving items into the new building four times. The athletic area and administrative offices still have not been signed off on. Teachers will also have March 10, 13 and 14 to work in their rooms. Kwapnioski said the teachers and some students have been loading U-Hauls and the maintenance department has been unloading the truck. The video on the scoreboard is up and running but the sound still needs to be done. Kwapnioski said the high school wants to involve more kids in helping with video production. He said one of the nice things about the new video system is you can pre-schedule events and have them only showing for a certain periods of time. Another advantage is that 95 percent of the video work can be done remotely 
IV.O. Curriculum and Instruction
IV.O.1. Administrative Functions
IV.O.1.1. CPS 2017-18 School Calendar

Executive Director of Curriculum and Instruction Amy Romshek said this is an interesting year with the calendar because of the construction. There needs to be at least 188 teacher contract days, 174 student attendance days and a balanced four quarters. The later start date is needed because the conversion of the high school to the middle school needs at least six months. Romshek said the committee had to work around the spring testing, so the days off are limited. The committee met two or three times and narrowed it down to two calendars. The group looked at trying to remove days off from the school year since people were going back two weeks later than usual. However, after receiving feedback from staff, the opinion was to go longer at the end of the year and keep some days off. The high school has eliminated academic intervention because of the move to a different schedule. The high school and middle school will also be on the same parent/teacher conference schedule. The first day for all staff will be August 25, and the start date for students will be September 1 with either a half-day or partial day. If the two snow days are needed, the final student day will be June 5 and final teacher day June 6. Next year winter break is 10 days, which includes the weekend. Students and staff will return January 2. Romshek said she knows getting out in June is really not popular but it is only for one year. 

IV.O.2. Updates

Romshek said her department has been working on math, music, art, keyboarding and computer applications curriculum. She said they also have been training people on NeSA testing. 

IV.P. Student Services
IV.P.1. Policies
IV.P.2. Administrative Functions
IV.P.2.1. Central Nebraska Rehabilitation Services Contract

Harris said the district pays Central Nebraska Rehabilitation Services $48 per hour for occupational and physical therapy. He said the hourly state rate is $63 per hour, so this company is significantly less. Harris said they do charge 45 cents per mile as compared to the state rate of 54 cents. Harris said he has looked for someone to provide this service locally, but there isn’t any one. He said the person who does the occupational therapy services is local but the physical therapy person is not.

IV.P.2.2. Special Education 2017-2018 Projections

Special education enrollment for 2016-17 is 636 students, which is birth to 21, and it is projected to be 640 for 2017-18. He said the numbers are increasing because verification guidelines for birth to three changed due to the Child Abuse Prevention and Treatment Act that says any child in DHHS custody must be given services due to trauma and potential delays. Harris said research shows infants pulled out of the home will show delays when they get to age three and four. CPS has 30 more birth to 3 year olds as compared to last year. He said the district is serving 118 students birth through 5 years old. Harris said the district has not accepted any contracted students since the beginning of the year. One of the reasons for the waiting list for sixpence is because even if a student is finished with special education, he or she is not dropped off until June, and since they are coming younger, they are not dropping off as soon. 

IV.P.3. Updates

The SixPence program is up for their continuous quality improvement review.  SixPence serves children from birth to three years old who are not verified as special education but are at risk. The grant is for $150,000, which provides for three home visits a month. Each of the two SixPence workers is serving 15 families, and if a family is being served, all children in the family will receive assistance. The review will look to see if the district is meeting the criteria. Harris said a lot of the visits happen in the evening, and the staff are required to do one social a month for the families. 

IV.Q. Superintendent's Report
Discussion:  Dr. Loeffelholz thanked Romshek and the committee for their work on putting together the calendar. He said for two years the calendar will be crazy. He also welcomed Pospisil back. Dr. Loeffelholz said a couple of big companies have contacted him about helping to move things. He said the anchor at the new high school has generated a lot of interest and has become a centerpiece for people to look at. Dr. Loeffelholz said the youth basketball program brought more than 90 teams to Columbus with students in grades third through eighth. He said the interest is growing and thinks more teams will come next year. Dr. Loeffelholz said the district is finishing one construction project and now already had their first meeting for the second project. He said the plan is to alternate construction meetings between the middle and high schools. The March 20 regular board meeting will be at noon and the listen session will take place at Centennial from 4:30-5 and the work session starting at 5 p.m. The meeting will adjourn and the board will go to the open house. Dr. Loeffelholz said the final home game in the gym was pretty special. He said he is watching LB 540, which is a controversial piece of legislation because it will reduce every district state aid by 1.5 percent and preserve non-equalization and TEEOSA. He said he plans to oppose LB 409 because it will destroy equalization aid. Dr. Loeffelholz said state aid will probably never be fully funded based on the calculations. He said every district receives state aid dollars but not everyone receives equalization aid
IV.R. Board Sharing

Pospisil said he appreciates the opportunity to be back on the board and is looking forward to seeing these big projects finished. Becher thanked Hausmann and the North Park teachers for showing the seven Marzano points. She also said the calendar looks good and welcomed Pospisil back.  Molczyk also thanked Hausmann for the presentation and said he loved the Marzano presentation. He said it enlightened him. He said Romshek and the committee did a good job on the calendar. Willoughby also thanked Romshek and the committee for work on the calendar and the negotiating team for all their work in getting a settlement. Willoughby said it is great to see Pospisil on the board again. Willoughby said it was interesting seeing one of his former students now teaching him about what goes on in the classrooms at North Park. Goos said he loves the energy of teachers and staff at North Park. He also said he appreciated all the hard work that went into the calendar. Goos said the final basketball game was special because of Kyle Anderson getting the last shot of the game. Seipel said she used to work at North Park, and there have been a lot of changes. She said the poverty level and ELL students have grown tremendously. Seipel said she liked Marzano training. She welcomed Pospisil back and thought the calendar was good. She said people need to be patient and wait for the open house to see the new high school. Dr. Loeffelholz said there will be a private showing of the new building to high school staff and their families. Dr. Loeffelholz thanked Kwapnioski for being up at the high school and making sure everything gets done at the site. Becher said the board needs to be actively supporting public schools because they are under attack. Dr. Loeffelholz said any time the board members want to go testify to contact him, and he will take them down to Lincoln. The ribbon cutting for the new high school will be on March 20 at 8 a.m. 

V. Executive Session
Discussion:  The board did not go into executive session. 
VI. Adjourn

The board adjourned at 9:13 p.m.

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