The Hancock-Henderson Quill, Inc.
At the Wednesday, April 15, 2009 regular meeting of the West Central CUSD #235 Board of Education the following items took place.
The meeting was called to order at 6:57 p.m. by Board President Brent. All board members were present at roll call.
President Brent then led the members of the audience in the Pledge of Allegiance.
Following the Pledge of Allegiance to the Flag, the board conducted a public hearing regarding a school holiday modification request. President Brent called the public hearing to order.
Superintendent Grimm made some remarks about the need for the holiday modification indicating that the modification was being requested so that the district could conduct a teacher's institute day on Lincoln's Birthday. It was noted that the district has a waiver to be in attendance on Lincoln's Birthday but that in order to hold a teacher's institute on that day, the district must obtain approval for a school calendar modification request.
Following those remarks, President Brent opened the floor to members of the audience for comment. Mrs. Alta Mae Brokaw asked a question of Supt. Grimm regarding the purpose for the modification. There were no other comments or questions from the audience. President then declared the public hearing adjourned at 7:05 p.m.
Under good news items, the following items were highlighted by those in attendance:
Six other students received 1st place honors, seven students received 2nd place honors and six students received 3rd place honors. She also recognized the WCHS students who participated in the Lincoln Trail Art Show.
The board approved the agenda with the addition of the following Personnel Action items: Resignation of Dan Morrison as WCHS teacher and coach, Resignation of Lisa Miller as WCMS science fair sponsor, Hiring of Lindsay Williams as WCMS Science Fair Sponsor, and Resignation of Shelley Morrison as WCHS Assistant Girls Basketball Coach. The Elementary and Middle School Handbook approval was removed from the consent agenda.
Under the recognition of audience request for presentation the board heard from CSC envoy, Sam Sudaker.
The board approved the consent agenda where following items were approved:
The board approved payment of all bills, the March activity accounts and the March 2009 treasurer's reports as presented. The board also heard a brief report from Supt. Grimm concerning the district's financial report. The board was also updated on the status of payments from the State of Illinois to the district. Supt Grimm also informed the board that he would be bringing to them in May an amended FY09 budget. This is brought about due the State of Illinois not making the allotted reimbursement payments in the transportation fund.
The board approved the 2009-2010 Elementary and Middle School parent/student handbooks. Prior to the approval of these two handbooks, the board discussed adding a statement regarding a "sleeper hold" as a punishable offense if this move is used by a student on another student. The board also discussed the topic of sexting as it relates to cell phone technology. The board asked the administrative team to come up with verbage regarding this topic and to include that verbage in all three building parent/student handbooks.
After a brief discussion of the 2009-2010 School Improvement Plans, the board approved these documents for the elementary, middle school and high school.
The board approved a series of revisions to current board policies on second reading and adoption. Those policies changed as a result of this action include:
The board took no action on the revision to Policy 2:140-Communication To and From the Board and Policy 5:185-Family and Medical Leave.
The board directed Supt. Grimm and the policy committee to continue working on the revisions of these two policies and to bring them back for second reading and adoption at the May board meeting.
The board established that their reorganization meeting will be held on April 23, 2009.
This meeting will begin at 8 p.m. and be held in the elementary cafeteria.
The board was also polled as to their preference for meeting dates, times and places for the new board. It appeared to be the consensus of the board members who will remain on the board and the newly elected board member Mrs. Renee Goff that the board meetings will continue to be held on the third Wednesday of each month with a starting time that roughly follows day light savings time in terms of either being a 6 p.m. or 7 p.m. start and that the meetings will continue to be held in the elementary cafeteria. Supt. Grimm indicated that he would have a tentative listing of these dates, times and places available for the new board to approve at the reorganization meeting on April 23rd.
The board heard reports from building principals Buss, Nichols and Geiser, a curriculum director's report from Mrs. Serven, a special education report from Mrs. Farniok, and a technology report from Mrs. Frakes' as district technology coordinator. Included in Mrs. Serven's report, was an update to the board on the FY10 Federal and State Grants.
Supt. Grimm then reported to the board on the Federal Stimulus Funds.
Mrs. Serven provided a report to the board regarding the work that has been done on the recommendations contained in the curriculum audits since the March board meeting. As part of this report, the board was informed that a meeting had been held with Math Consultant Fern Tribbey and the district's math teachers concerning possible revisions to the district's math curriculum including the possible implementation of a requirement that would require all 8th grade students to take Algebra. It was noted that no decisions have been made regarding this possible curricular change and that the issue will be studied quite possibly until October or November before any recommendations are forthcoming to the board.
The board continued discussing a proposed policy regarding drug and alcohol testing of students who participate in extracurricular activities. This proposed policy had been discussed by the board's policy committee. The board directed several questions back to Mr. Blender for further study. It was also suggested that Mr. Geiser, Mr. Blender, Mr. Grimm and the board policy committee met to continue discussing and developing this proposed policy.
The board discussed again the district's athletic program as a follow up to the February 21, 2009 board retreat.
As a result of the discussion, it was decided to form an ad-hoc committee to continue the discussion of our athletic programs.
The members of this committee will be appointed after the new board is seated.
Mr. Geiser briefly reviewed with the board a few changes to the High School's parent/student handbook.
These proposed changes included a change in the demerit policy, the attendance incentive regarding semester exams, a request to review the counseling requirement for those students who violate the district's athletic code.
Following a brief question and answer period regarding these proposed changes, the board indicated their agreement with the proposed changes and complimented Mr. Blender and Mr. Geiser for the work that they had done relative to making these changes.
The board briefly discussed the possibility of weighted grades for certain high school courses. It was the consensus of the board to leave the current policy and practice in place as it is.
Under future agenda items, Supt. Grimm informed the board that he has done some work regarding the Illinois Virtual High School. It was also noted that the high school handbook revisions for the 2009-2010 parent/student handbook will be brought back to the board in May for approval as well as final recommendations on the revisions to Board policies 2:140 and 5:185.
Board member Sams recognized Paul Anderson, Brad Arnold, Lonnie Brent, and Richard Clifton for their last four years on the board.
The board entered closed session at 10:02 p.m. to discuss matters pertaining to personnel.
The board exited closed session at approximately 12:17 a.m. Upon exiting closed session, the following action took place:
The board was reminded that the next board meeting will be on Thursday, April 23, 2009, at 7:00 p.m. and be held in the elementary cafeteria.
This meeting will be the reorganization meeting to seat new board members.
The board was also reminded that the regular May meeting will be held on Wednesday, May 21, 2009 and that meeting will begin at 7 p.m. and also be held in the elementary cafeteria.
There being no other business to come before the board, the meeting was adjourned at approximate 12:25 a.m.