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Regular Meeting of the West Central CUSD #235 Board of Education

Wednesday, August 17, the West Central CUSD #235 Board of Education conducted their regular meeting with Board President Lonnie Brent calling the meeting to order at 7 p.m. All board members were present and President Brent led the audience in the Pledge and he following were highlighted:

The board approved the consent agenda including June 15 Minutes and August 2, Special Meeting and payment of all bills including some additional bills that were presented.

The board approved the activity accounts, treasurer's report as presented. Supt. Grimm reviewed with the board the district's financial report and reported that as of August 17, the State of Illinois owes the district $236,258 in money that ISBE has vouchered to the Comptroller's Office but the district has not yet received.

The board approved a gift of $5000 from the Twomey Foundation. The board publicly thanked the Twomey Foundation and the Twomey Company for the variety of ways that they support the district in addition to the monetary donation from the Twomey Foundation.

The board approved a loan in the amount of $250,000 from the working cash fund to the transportation fund. It was pointed out that of the $236,000 that the state owes district 235, approximately $112,000 of that total is for transportation reimbursement. Supt Grimm pointed out that this is the third year in a row that the board has been asked to approve the loan from working cash to transportation fund and given the fact that the state has eliminated the fourth quarterly reimbursement payment from FY11, it looks like this trend of lending money from working cash to transportation will continue.

The board approved an agreement with McDonough District Hospital to continue providing the random drug testing that has been in place in the district for the last two years. It was noted that the testing will take place during the months school is in session and that 10 students will be tested each month at a cost of $35.00 per student per test.

The board approved a request from Supt Grimm to approve a life safety amendment in an amount not to exceed $25,000 for the replacement of a boiler in the elementary building.

The board heard reports from Principals Mr. Buss, Mr. Nichols and Mr. Bradburn. In addition, Elementary Assistant Principal Mrs. Hanson highlighted some of the things in her report.

Supt. Grimm provided the board with an overview of the district's plan to transition to the new common core standards, the certified teachers' evaluation plan and principal evaluation plan. Supt Grimm shared with the board a power point presentation on these topics. It was noted that this power point will be placed on the district's webpage under the heading of "Common Core". The board briefly discussed several components of the power point and the three-year plan to implement the requirements of Senate Bill 7 which is the education reform legislation that was passed earlier in the Spring of 2011.

Mrs. Tara Hanson WCES Asst Principal, presented an overview of the PBIS program that we are implementing at West Central Elementary. We will also begin to implement this program at West Central Middle School.

The board heard a report from District Technology Coordinator Melinda Frakes of projects that were completed over the summer.

Mrs. Farniok, District Special Education Coordinator presented her report.

Highlighted in her report was the fact that the special education teachers had done a very good job writing their goals for their students to be included in their IEPs and this year the special education teachers would be working on writing goals to deal more specifically with student behavior as well as academic issues.

The board heard a report from Supt. Grimm on the building projects that were completed over the summer. The board was reminded that there were approximately 15 major projects that were identified during the Spring of 2011 and Supt Grimm reported that all but 3 of these projects have been completed.

The work of the district's custodial and maintenance staff was highlighted again during this portion of the meeting and several comments were made about how clean and nice the buildings look at this time.

Supt Grimm briefly talked about the activities that have taken place at the beginning of the 2011-12 opening of school.

The board reviewed two documents pertaining to our students 2011-12 ISAT, PSAE and ACT scores. It was noted that our math scores on ISAT continue to be exceptionally strong and across the district and that we held our high scores in reading. It was also pointed out that the middle school made adequate yearly progress for 2011. The high school ACT scores were reviewed and it was noted that the composite ACT scores for the juniors who took that test during the Spring of 2011 was approximately point below the State average. It was also pointed out that we have seen improvement in our students scores in all areas tested on the ACT. Supt Grimm reminded the board that these test scores will be used by the building school improvement plan teams and that we were looking for continued improvement from one year to the next.

The board reviewed briefly a district's hiring practice document that Supt. Grimm had put together. After a brief discussion, it was suggested that perhaps this document could be posted in the teacher's lounge of each building. Supt Grimm indicated that this would be done.

The board heard the administration's plan to move Mrs. Frakes to a full time technology coordinator position. The board was informed that five students who had originally signed up to take an accounting class will now need to take that class from the Illinois Virtual High School and this plan would require Mrs. Keever to spend one more period on the north campus per day before heading to the south campus. Supt Grimm told the board that having Mrs. Frakes make this move was originally her idea and hopefully it would solve some of our problems with having technology related issues taken care of in a timely fashion. The board was supportive of this move and asked to be kept informed of how it is working.

There were no future agenda items identified by the board.

The board entered closed session at 9:15 to discuss matters pertaining to personnel and to review closed session minutes.

The board exited closed session at 9:54 p.m. and took the following action:

The board was reminded that the September meeting will be held on Wednesday, September 21, 2011. This meeting will be held in the elementary cafeteria. The board was also reminded that there will be a budget hearing for the FY12 budget in the elementary cafeteria on that date beginning at 6:30 p.m. The new teachers to the district will be in attendance on this evening to meet and visit with the board. It was also decided that the board would like to recognize our students on their performance on the 2011 ISAT and PSAE tests on this evening as well.

There being no other business to come before the board, the board adjourned their meeting at 10:06 p.m.