The Hancock-Henderson Quill, Inc.
At the Wednesday, October 18, 2006 regular meeting of the West Central Community Unit School District #235 Board of Education the following items took place:
President Lonnie Brent called the meeting to order at 6:02 p.m.
All board members, except Richard Clifton, were present at roll call. President Brent led the audience in the Pledge of Allegiance.
The following items were highlighted as "Good News" items:
Superintendent Grimm requested that the board add discussions items (J). TRS Penalty and (K). Skateboarding to the agenda. The board approved the additions.
During recognition of audience request for presentation, the board heard a briefing from Dr. Larry Benne, this month's Carl Sandburg Community College Envoy.
The board approved the consent agenda as presented including:
The board approved the bills as presented. It was noted that Curt Wilson, owner of Cessford Construction, gave the district a 50% discount on his charges for gravel for the north campus parking lot.
Superintendent Grimm asked the board for permission to add a bill from Wisslead Oil for $17,362.50 for a tanker load of fuel which is to be delivered on October 19, 2006.
The board approved the activity accounts and treasurer's report as presented.
The board heard a briefing of the district financial report from Superintendent Grimm.
The board approved the formation of a public relations sub-committee. Brent, Anderson and Clifton were appointed to this committee.
The public relation sub-committee will meet with Superintendent Grimm to select community members to serve on a district public relations committee, their work will begin in the next 3-4 weeks.
The board heard a briefing from the superintendent on the findings of the FY06 independent audit. Superintendent Grimm noted two minor issues. The board received a summary of the accounts comparing the last year of the two previous districts to FY06 as prepared by the auditors.
After brief discussion, the board approved the FY06 district audit report as presented.
The board reviewed a proposal from MediaCall group, a public relations and marketing firm from Macomb for the development of a district annual report. It calls for MediaCall to assist in the development of an annual report which will include a wide variety of summary statistics from the 2005-06 school year that will be mailed to all district postal patrons. The proposal calls for the printing of 5000 of these annual reports of which 3582 will be mailed to district postal patrons.
The board approved a request from the junior class officers and sponsors to hold the Jr./Sr. Prom off campus in Burlington in April of 2007.
The board heard a report from District Architect Bill Phillips concerning several projects that he is involved with. The board learned that several of the projects that were initiated under the health and life safety program have been completed and the completion paperwork will be submitted to the regional superintendent soon.
The board gave Bill Phillips permission to bring developing bid specs for several projects, most notably a ventilation project for approximately 12 classrooms in the high school, some door work, some tuck pointing and crack repair work in all of the district buildings, and the roof replacement project at the middle school in Stronghurst.
The board gave permission to Mr. Phillips to begin the development of a five to ten year capital projects plan. The primary purpose will be to facilitate the completion of preventive type maintenance for the items that typically cost significant dollars.
The plan would be to assist the board and superintendent in developing building fund budgets and planning work over the long term.
Mr. Phillips updated the board on an idea that he had on the development of a facility usage plan, some work that our district custodial and maintenance staff will be doing relative to the ten-year life safety survey and updated the board on a couple of proposals for additional work that are under consideration.
Mr. Phillips shared a list of security measures that he has seen in other districts. The board reviewed the list and decided to continue discussing these items at the November board meeting.
The board heard reports from Mr. Buss, Mr. Nichols and Mrs. Rima and the activities that have been occurring in their buildings since the September board meeting.
The board heard a brief report from Jeanne Serven, District Curriculum Director on the activities that she has undertaken in the last month.
The board head a brief report from Barb Elliott updating the board on the progress being made with the phone system and other technology issues.
Mrs. Adair reported to the board on our special education numbers. Mrs. Farniok was ill and unable to attend the meeting.
The board heard an update from WCHS Dean of Students, Jay Blender, on some of the things that he has been involved with in his role as Dean of Students.
The board heard a presentation from three members of the WCHS student council. The WCHS student council is working on several initiatives to develop a positive climate in the high school.
The board gave permission for the student council to proceed with the following three projects: 1) sign project for the front of West Central High School 2) a senior wall project and 3) a project to paint the boys and girls restrooms at the high school.
The board also heard a report from the student council representatives about the fund raising campaign for the marquee project.
The board briefly talked about the upcoming school board convention which will be held during the third week of November.
The board briefly reviewed a set of proposed criteria for the use of one-on-one aides. Mr. Grimm and Mrs. Adair answered a few questions relative to the proposed guidelines. The board directed Superintendent Grimm to bring the guidelines back to the board at their November meeting for their approval.
The board briefly discussed board policy 8:40 - Spectator conduct and sportsmanship for athletic and extracurricular events. The board affirmed the intent of policy 8:40 in that any spectator at a school sponsored event or extra curricular activity who chooses to display inappropriate behavior will be dealt with in a serious and harsh manner.
It was also decided that the board's policy sub-committee should meet to discuss policy 8:40 to see if it needs to be expanded to include conduct guidelines for coaches and students.
The board decided to conduct a community meeting in Oquawka on November 7 at 7:00 p.m. Superintendent Grimm will be working on the details to conduct such a meeting.
The board briefly discussed the April 2007 school board member election. Several items were talked about under this agenda item. It was decided that this topic should be brought back to the board to discuss again in November.
The superintendent reviewed with the board the new ISBE regulations regarding junk food that all school districts with grades K-8 must now adhere to. Superintendent Grimm informed the board that he had met with Karen Day and Donna Mudd and reviewed these new guidelines with them.
They will be checking their menus against these new guidelines and reporting back to him as soon as possible. The superintendent informed the board that he will inform them if any changes are needed in our menus in an upcoming Friday note.
The board discussed snow removal plans. It was the consensus of the board to contact those people who provided snow removal services to the district last year to see if they are willing to provide those services again this year.
The board reviewed the 2006 West Central High School ACT scores. The superintendent shared information with the board that had been shared with the staff earlier on Wednesday. Superintendent Grimm suggested to the board, that while these scores appear to be lower than perhaps we would like, there was much research that needed to be done to come up with possible explanations for the scores.
It was suggested that the board allow the administrative team and the high school staff the opportunity to review the scores and come back and discuss them again at the November board meeting.
The board heard from the superintendent a report on the developments of the TRS penalties that have been assessed to District #235 for the early retirements of two former staff members.
Superintendent Grimm informed the board that through a quirk in Senate Bill 49, it was the interpretation of the legal staff at TRS that we would have to pay the $18,500 penalty.
He also informed the board that Senator John Sullivan and Representative Rich Myers are willing to sponsor legislation to fix the quirk in the law that TRS is relying on to collect the money from us.
The board directed Superintendent Grimm not to pay the penalty until such time as we can determine whether or not the legislation that is going to be introduced will be passed and approved.
The board heard a request from Stronghurst village board member, Angela Myers, who was representing the village concerning skateboarding. Skateboarding has been banned from the park in Stronghurst. The Village of Stronghurst would like to provide a spot for our youth to skateboard in a safe manner and one that does not cause harm to property or people.
The city is exploring the idea of building a skateboarding park and was wondering if the district would consider having it placed on the middle school campus. The board directed the superintendent to check into this and report back to Mrs. Myers on his findings.
Under Future Agenda, the board suggested that building security be added to the November agenda as a discussion topic as well as the upcoming school board election.
The board entered closed session to discuss matters pertaining to personnel at 9:08 p.m. Upon exiting at 10:25 p.m. the board:
The board was reminded that their next meeting will be Wednesday, November 15, 2006. It was decided that the November board meeting will be held at the Early Childhood Center in Media in the cafeteria of that facility and begin at 6:00 p.m.
The meeting was adjourned at 10:30 p.m.