Public Meeting Minutes: November 13, 2017 at 5:30 PM - Committee As A Whole


View Options:

Show Everything
Hide Everything

November 13, 2017 at 5:30 PM - Committee As A Whole Minutes

November 13, 2017 at 5:30 PM - Committee As A Whole
I. Committee As A Whole
I.A. Call to Order
I.B. Roll Call of Board
I.C. Pledge of Allegiance
I.D. Notice of Open Meeting Posted
I.D.1. President insures all can hear proceedings
I.E. Presentations
I.E.1. 2016-2017 Audit Report

Joe Held with Schumacher, Smejkal, Brockhaus and Herley, gave the CPS audit report a clean opinion with no findings. Held said the internal controls are very good at CPS. He did caution the board that they need to keep an eye on the debt payments. Held said the firm is required to do an individual audit of two sections that are over $750 and funded by federal funds. This year they looked at child nutrition through Lunchtime Solutions and also special education, and there were no issues in either of the areas. Executive Director of Business Operations and Human Relations Dave Melick said the administration is pleased to work with Held and the others at the firm.

I.E.2. Lost Creek Presentation

Quality Indicators - Lost Creek Principal Jeff Bartels said the theme for this year is Team (Together Everyone Achieves More). He begins every morning with words of wisdom to the students and staff. In 2017, the K-4 enrollment is 350 students with 70 percent white, 30 percent minority and 27 percent Hispanic. Forty-eight percent of the students qualify for free or reduced lunch. There are currently 57 employees, 30 certified and 27 classified.  Bartels said the NeSA reading scored declined to 73 percent.  He said the DIBELS scores are holding steady. Bartels said the math scores were more sporadic. There were three students in third grade, one in fourth grade and one in fifth grade with a perfect score in math, and one fifth grader with a perfect score in science. All the classrooms were painted over the summer and each room received new banners outside their doors. The inclusive playground is open, and kids of all abilities can play. The students sold 732 tubs of Eileen's Cookie Dough, and there were 161 school pride T-shirts ordered. The Army National Guard was at Lost Creek filming veteran Jenny Bos for a recruitment and retention video. The Student Council collected 1,619 items, which amounted to 1,593 pounds of food for the Food pantry.

Math Expressions - Second grade teachers wanted the parents to understand the new way of teaching math. They felt in the beginning this can be a difficult process. They posted videos on Class Dojo to show the parents what students were doing in class. Parents felt this was a good way to help explain the way their children were learning. 

I.E.3. CPS Foundation Presentation

CPS Foundation Executive Director Kim Kwapnioski said the Foundation has raised $2 million, but a majority of that money was due to Dr. Loeffelholz's hard work. To date, there has been $1.4 million put into the STEM Academy, and even though this was over the $1.3 million budget, there are still funds available for scholarships and equipment replacement.

Kwapnioski said they are writing grants to help offset those costs as well. It was an exciting year with $110,000 in new grant money being generated. A donor gave $30,000 for the STEM on the Go trailer, and CPS received matching funds from the community foundation. The trailer will go to the different school sites and will have all the activities inside. She said they are currently working with Central Community College on writing the curriculum. Kwapnioski is also working on the reVision Grant for automotive certifications with CHS Career Coordinator Heidi Elliott.

Kwapnioski said she is proud that 81 percent of staff gave to the Foundation last year, which was up 74 percent from the previous year. She said she did some creative things to market and promote the giving, which included winning jeans days for a week. Kwapnioski said for this year, she approached all of the administrators for ideas of projects they would like to see done in their buildings. She would like to take these projects and make them part of the Big Give.  Last year, there was $6,000 raised for the inclusive playground. 

Kwapnioski said she is working on the second phase of the anchor project. The anchor has been a highlight of this summer with many class reunions wanting pictures by it. There have been 5 links, 14 benches and 279 bricks sold so far, and she wants to continue working on that piece.

Kwapnioski said she is working with the Columbus Baseball Association to build baseball fields. She said they are in the process of getting conceptual bids. Dr. Loeffelholz said when planning for the fields, they are trying to think long term and plan more than just baseball fields but also softball fields, tennis courts, parking, etc.

This year there was an Anchor 5K Fun Run and a Discoverer Dash that was run before a football game. The little kids had the opportunity to run through the Discoverer tunnel before the race started. There was a total of over $3,600 raised and 87 participants between the two races. Several high school groups helped at the Anchor Fun Run. Kwapnioski said it was a neat event and she is excited to watch it grow. A committee will look at what improvements can be made for next year.

Cookies Anchoring Students for Success and Helping Business Retention (CASH) is where Kwapnioski and Elliott take cookies to businesses and talk about what the businesses need and try to maintain the partnerships. A result of this effort is B-D will be offering dual credit scholarships this year. She said they have met with several businesses including ADM, Superior Industries, Blazer Mfg., Duo-Lift, and Camaco, and they are working on getting appointments set up with Ernst, Behlen Mfg., and Lindsay Mfg.

The Omaha Symphony is going to be in Columbus on Feb. 8. The Friends of Music paid to bring them to Columbus for the CPS students. Kwapnioski said they are working on specifics to get students to see the performance. She will also be on a panel for the Nebraska Association of Public School Foundations about promoting public schools. She said this will give her an opportunity to share all the great things that are going on at CPS.

Kwapnioski said a lot of communities want to see what CHS and the STEM Academy are all about. Some of the people who have contacted her include: Dr. Rames from Wayne State College, Neligh consolidating schools, a regional economic development group and a Fremont group, which is coming next week. She said she has also had contact from Norfolk. Kwapnioski said she has been going to the LEAD times at CHS to inform students about the scholarships that are available through the Foundation. She has also sent a voice message to all senior parents about the scholarship money. There are a couple of new scholarships this year including the Ron Callan Scholarship, from an anonymous donor for a $1,000 scholarship . In addition to another scholarship, the class of 1967 purchased a bench and two bricks. There is currently $5,923 in dual scholarship money available plus the additional $1,200 from B-D.

Some of the future projects include: summer school programs with STEM; continue the Cash program by meeting with other businesses; and finding projects that are already in need for the district. Kwapnioski said she is interested in getting the list from each administrator. She said she would like to get a business mentoring program to create sustained relationships with students and industries. She said the goal is to connect students beyond CHS. Kwapnioski said B-D is not limiting what courses students can take with the scholarships. Dr. Loeffelholz said there is scholarship money available from funds raised for STEM. He said they raised $1.8 million and only $1.4 million has been spent. There is also some money that has not yet been collected. Dr. Loeffelholz said when he approached the businesses about donating to STEM he did not promise them any of the CHS students would go to their to business to work. He did promise them they would have access to the students. He said the LEAD-time at the high school is a good time for businesses to meet with students. Dr. Loeffelholz said this gives industry a good opportunity to recruit students. Kwapnioski said Elliott and she make a good team because they each bring different strengths.

I.F. Board Special Functions
I.G. Consent Agenda
I.G.1. Approval of Minutes

Dr. Loeffelholz said the minutes from the Committee as a Whole and Regular Board meeting will now both need to be approved at the meetings.

I.G.2. Financial Reports M2, M3, M4a

Melick said this was a big month for tax receipts. He pointed out several bills that were paid including $18,000 to Eakes Office Supply for new copiers; $20,457.25 for the annual fee for PowerSchool; and $20,000 for BIST consulting, which will include five visits to each building.

I.G.3. Financial Report M4b

Seipel Repair was paid $794.25 for regular service on a dozen vehicles and $562.18 for break repair on a vehicle.

I.G.4. Certified Personnel
I.G.5. Classified Personnel
I.G.6. Professional Travel

Dr. Loeffelholz said in Suzanne’s absence, a group of people was sent to the PowerSchool conference in Wisconsin.

I.H. Acceptance of Gifts/Donations

The Foundation and umbrella groups contributed $249,765.38 for the month of October. The Matt Moore Foundation is purchasing a Digital Trophy Case Kiosk with an electronic display for $12,545. This will display everything from yearbooks to past sports and theater pictures. Everything will be stored electronically. Dr. Loeffelholz said it is impressive that in two months the Foundation and umbrella groups have given $370,551.45 back to the district.

I.I. Business Operations and Human Relations
I.I.1. Policies
I.I.2. Administrative Functions
I.I.2.1. Surplus Property

Melick said the ELL office had outdated office chairs, and all staff got new ones. CMS Principal Amy Haynes also listed power tools, hand tools, furniture, shelves and other items as surplus.

I.I.3. Updates

Melick said he met with the Food Advisory Committees, which consists of students from each building. He said this is part of the agreement that CPS has with Lunchtime Solutions. Melick said the students did a nice job and provided a lot of feedback.

I.J. Buildings & Sites/Technology
I.J.1. Policies
I.J.2. Administrative Functions
I.J.2.1. Beard Warren Bid/Emerson Cooling Towers

The replacement low bid for the Emerson Cooling Towers by Beard Warren will cost $97,230. Executive Director of Building Operations and Technology Leonard Kwapnioski said the district will be switching from aluminum to fiberglass. He said Beard Warren will also give the district a longer warranty. Kwapnioski said fiberglass should last about 20 to 25 years and stainless about 20 years. He said when Mike Grutsch and he were looking at the bids they wanted something that would last a long time.

I.J.2.2. Surplus Property From Building Transitions

Kwapnioski said maintenance has been busy cleaning out the second and third floors of the old middle school. He said the goal is to get everything in one spot. Kwapnioski said the old lockers are in demand. He said the elliptical machines would be salvaged because they cannot be fixed. Kwapnioski said nothing has been organized yet. He also said not everything is going to be sold because some of it is junk. Kwapnioski said he plans to have an auction of the items. He said there has been a lot of contact from other schools about some of the items. He said he would like to let the schools come in and see what they want to purchase first. Kwapnioski said a price would need to be determined. He said there are a wide variety of things that need to be gotten rid of. Kwapnioski said once the weather gets colder, maintenance will focus on cleaning and organizing the items that will be for sale. He said he would like to have the auction in February but is not sure if this can be done by that time. He said when the auction is held, the old cabinets in classrooms will be sold but the buyer must come in and remove them. There will be 21 television sets that will need to be recycled. He said nothing that has been damaged will be sold.

I.J.2.3. FireGuard Contract

Fire alarm inspections - Kwapnioski said he will be asking the board to approve a three year contract with FireGuard for fire alarm inspections at a cost of $16,199.20 per year. There are currently three schools that have Fire Guard. He said the company will also offer a warranty for five years except for the panel. Kwapnioski said this will help the district to defray some cost. FireGuard will do inspections for all buildings. Centennial, Emerson, Lost Creek and North Park have Siemens systems, but FireGuard can do the inspections. Kwapnioski said the problem with Siemens is that only that company can do certain work. He said if the district moves to one manufacturer this will allow more people to work on things. Kwapnioski said this is an all-inclusive bid.

I.J.3. Updates

Kwapnioski said one vendor was brought to the old middle school today to look at the pipe that burst and another one will come in tomorrow. He said a pipe in the 1924 building is old and rusty and without it the steam heat won’t work. Kwapnioski said something must be done. He said the goal is to keep everything at 50 degrees, which isn’t impossible with no steam heat.

Kwapnioski said he went to a day and half conference on fiber network and found out CPS could do their own fiber project. He said Columbus has to do something and make some changes and pulling their own fiber is a good solution. He said there are several companies that are interested in doing fiber in Columbus. Kwapnioski said at one time, the city wanted to partner with CPS to do this, but now, the city feels there are too many unknowns such as where the library, fire department and other facilities will be located. He said that Platte County has expressed an interested in doing a fiber project with CPS.

Sports field - Dr. Loeffelholz, Kim Kwapnioski and he have met with two engineering firms in regard to the 24 acres being considered for a sports complex. He said the district wants to see what the entire area will look like down the road and not just the baseball fields. Kwapnioski said he will be meeting with another firm tomorrow. The firm will come up with a conceptual design that is two D and three D, so the Columbus Baseball Association can go out and raise money. He said some of the key pieces will be making sure the design has proper drainage, fits the neighborhood and benefits the kids. Dr. Loeffelholz said he is trying to think more than 25 years out. He reminded the board that they wanted green space between the high school and Lost Creek. Kwapnioski said some of the people in the group want 400-foot fences, so college exhibition games could be played on the fields. He said they must consider softball, tennis and other things as well. Kwapnioski said this should lead to good conversation. He said by December the engineers should have a conceptual design to present to the board.

The maintenance department recently hired Mike Moje. He has 20 years of carpenter/laborer work. Kwapnioski said he will bring in a lot of experience, and this will allow the district to do even more work itself. He said the goal it to continue to build that team of people with experience. He said there were five people who applied, but not all were not carpenters.

I.K. Curriculum and Instruction
I.K.1. Policies
I.K.2. Administrative Functions
I.K.3. Updates

AdvancEd Visitation - Executive Director of Curriculum and Instruction Amy Romshek said her department has spent most of last month preparing for the visitation. She thanked the board, directors, principals and Dr. Loeffelholz for all their help. She said they did make some recommendations for improvements but would not answer any questions. She said they will send a report in the next 45 days, and she will share the results with the board at that time.

Academic Strategic Plan - ASOT instructional Model tries to reach proficiency by applying the Super 7 elements. The Super 7 elements were chosen by teachers and administrators. Three were in the designed area, two are on delivery of instruction; and two on organize and content. The goals and skills are written for the teacher as well as the students. The idea is how students can take that information and expand it to other work.

I.L. Student Services
I.L.1. Policies
I.L.1.1. First Reading of Policy 501 Objectives for Equal Educational Opportunities for Students

This policy is about making sure there is equal access to all education programs. Executive Director of Student Services Jason Harris said the main change is if a compliance complaint is filed it must go to the superintendent or his or her designee.

I.L.1.2. First Reading of Policy 1005.12 Title 1 Parent and Family Member Engagement

This policy had to change because of No Child Left Behind being replaced by Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA). Harris said the district is already doing these things, but the policy needs to be changed because of ESSA. The main objective is to make sure parents and family are involved in child's educational planning.

I.L.2. Administrative Functions
I.L.3. Updates

Special Education Cost for Columbus Public Schools for the 2015-16 School year are:  B-5 $600,176; 5-21 $4,035,472; transportation $347,530.

The IDEA Grant expenditures were $910,0965. This is about what the district spends yearly in special education. Local tax dollars have increased over years for special ed. cost while state funds have decreased.  Of IDEA Federal grant most is spent birth to age 5. Preschool 4 grant classrooms will go their evaluation process through the Early Childhood environment rating scale.  The district must be at satisfactory to continue with grant funding.  On Nov. 29 NDE will be out to give report. The Sixpence program has two home visitors that serve 24 students and can serve up to 30.  Staff have been trying to get more family involvement and partnership but only getting 6 out of 24 to come to activities.  

I.M. Superintendent's Report

The State School Boards conference will begin this week. We are starting to play with school calendars for 2018-19.   Board election registrations for the three incumbents are due February 15th.  Each of the three should have applications.  Up for re-election is Tim Pospisil, Doug Molczyk and Theresa Seipel.  Ken Curry from morning Rotary asked if they could donate signs for the schools.  They would buy 35 signs.  Signs would say, Don't text and drive; always buckle up and drive safely. We will attach to stop signs in parking lots. Letter from the Association of Career and Technical Education thanking Steve Woodside for his involvement in career and technology and the administration for allowing him to be part of their board.  Football didn't have the ending we possibly wanted. Softball and volleyball had some big wins this year and experienced some success. Tennis and Cross country boys had successful years.  The girls golf team had one of their most successful years with two top ten finishers.  The musical was a good one. Top to bottom overall best group of singers I have heard in a long time.

I.N. Board Sharing

Mike Goos thanked Jeff Bartels for his presentation. He said he liked the videos the second grade teachers are doing to help parents. He congratulated Woodside on his service. Goos said the Foundation is doing some awesome things. Doug Willoughby said he thought the evaluation process with AdvancEd went well, and they were very pleasant and disarming. Willoughby said after the meeting, he felt it re-enforced the good expertise that the district has for leadership. Candy Becher said the two students who did the choreography for the musical did an amazing job. She said there were a lot of movements in some of the dances. Doug Molczyk said he enjoyed visiting Lost Creek, and the staff had positive comments about the principal. Tim Pospisil said he enjoyed the visit at Lost Creek as well. He said the staff said they used to be emailed the minutes every month and now they are not. They also said they have trouble finding the minutes from the meetings. Pospisil said he felt it was a positive that they wanted to know what was going on. He agreed with Molczyk that the staff was very complimentary of Bartels. Theresa Seipel apologized for being late. She said Kim Kwapnioski does a good job and has done a lot for the district. She said she enjoys being a grandma.

I.O. Adjourn

The board adjourned at 8:12 p.m.

<< Back to the Public Page for Columbus Public Schools