3-19-2018 Regular Meeting Minutes

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MINUTES

REGULAR MEETING OF THE ALLEGHANY COUNTY SCHOOL BOARD

March 19, 2018

 

The Alleghany County School Board held its regular meeting on March 19, 2018, at 6:00 p.m. at Alleghany High School in Covington, Virginia.

PRESENT: Gerald E. Franson, Vice Chairman; R. Craig Lane; Danielle I. Morgan; Norman L. Persinger, Jr.; Jennifer S. Seckner; Randall S. Tucker, Chairman; and Jacob L. Wright.  Also present: Eugene P. Kotulka, Superintendent; and Lorie C. Bess, Clerk.

ABSENT: 

Chairman Tucker announced the following additions to the agenda:

1.   Agenda item #18-252, “Consider revision to 2017-2018 academic calendar”.  This will be an  information item, not an action item.

2.   During Closed Session, the Board will discuss Real Property associated with potential land acquisition or disposal, pursuant to the Code of Virginia Section 2.2-3711.A.3.

 

COMMUNITY PARTICIPATION

(18-234) OPENING REMARKS AND WELCOME BY DWAYNE ROSS, PRINCIPAL, ALLEGHANY HIGH SCHOOL

Mr. Ross welcomed everyone to Alleghany High School and thanked them for attending the meeting.  He stated it is his expectation to strive for greatness in all things and one of his goals is full accreditation.  He noted his students are always doing excellent things in academics, athletics, and the community and commended them for their efforts.  He thanked the School Board for the new parking lot, Chromebooks, professional development opportunities, for supporting the New Tech program, and for allowing him to be a part of this family.  He thanked his staff for all they do.

(18-235) REMARKS BY PTO REPRESENTATIVE

Robert Tucker, PTO president, read the following statement:  “On behalf of the PTO I welcome you to Alleghany High School to witness the last days of education as most have always known it to be. We are about to embark on a journey that will take us to new realms, and as we know change can be both exciting and terrifying. I am sure you have heard many times the question of why are we doing this when most of the state is not joining us on this journey. I would like to answer that question. In this area we have a long history of always doing what is best for our children in Alleghany County regardless of what others in the state are doing or think of our actions. It is appropriate that we are doing this in 2018 for it is the 150th anniversary of a radical idea in education implemented in parts of Alleghany County in 1868. The state told localities who could and could not be educated and how to do it. A group of residents from the area of whom I am a descendant, as well as are several members of this school board, decided that they knew what was best for their children and despite what others may think or say about their actions, they intended to do it. Thanks to them, Mary Margaret Persinger learned to read and write and her writings continue to inspire people around the world. I have a copy of the cover of a textbook on Virginia history and it illustrates the value of breaking new ground when it comes to the accepted norms of education better than I could. Look and you will see the picture of Mary Margaret’s grandniece Vicky Persinger, cultural historian at the Monacan Village at Natural Bridge who speaks to tens of thousands of people each year. She often quotes the journals written by Mary Margaret Persinger in her talks. Those who taught as the generation before them taught because that was the way things had always been done are now long forgotten, but a decision made by a group of people in little ol’ Alleghany County to do what was best for their children lives on. The grandniece of a person that Virginia thought was not worthy of an education, now is on the cover of a textbook on Virginia history. We are trailblazers because those who came before us were. It is in our blood. Are there risks? Yes there are, but the possible gains make it worth the risks we face. Let us continue on this journey we have begun to honor those who came before us.”

(18-236) REMARKS BY SCA REPRESENTATIVE

Sidney Hepler welcomed everyone to Alleghany High School.  She discussed upcoming events for Senior Week, a tailgate party with a band, and a trip in May to Kings Dominion.  She thanked Mrs. Rumfelt and Mr. Ross for their support. 

(18-237) SCHOOL BOARD COMMENDATIONS

  • AHS and CMS students who earned a perfect score on their spring 2017 SOLs
  • State Wrestling Tournament:2nd place in the Region and 6th place state finish:Justin Hall
  • Forensics Regional Champion in Poetry:Morgan Linsin
  • Forensics Regional Champion in Prose:Kerstyn Ford
  • Forensics Regional Champion in Extemporary Speaking: Aysha Wright
  • “ABCD” staff awards:Stacy Gibson, Stephen Hodges, Sonya Howell, and Dwayne Ross

(18-238) PUBLIC COMMENT

There were no citizens wishing to address the Board.

(18-239) SCHOOL BOARD MEMBERS AND SUPERINTENDENT COMMENTS

Mr. Franson thanked Mr. Ross and staff for hosting the meeting.  He thanked Mr. Ross for his opening comments and noted it is clear that his building is like a family, having love, compassion, and togetherness for each other.  He congratulated everyone who received a commendation. 

Mrs. Seckner thanked everyone for attending the meeting during these busy times.  She thanked Robert Tucker for his comments and recalled a statement he wrote in her yearbook at graduation.  She stated she has never forgotten what he wrote and she appreciates that he is continuously teaching everyone.  She thanked Sidney Hepler for her comments.  She congratulated all who received a commendation and noted the wrestling team was regional champions for the first time in 27 years.  She commended those who received an ABCD Award and thanked them for all they do. 

Mrs. Morgan echoed Mrs. Seckner’s comments.  She congratulated the 2018 graduates.  She stated we are all blessed to have the staff, students, and community that we have. 

Mr. Lane thanked Mr. Ross and staff for hosting the meeting.  He thanked Robert Tucker for his comments and stated they were very inspiring.  He offered well wishes to the graduates of 2018.  He commended everyone on their awards and stated it is good to see such a well-rounded group of students.  He stated he is looking forward to moving forward with New Tech.   

Mr. Persinger congratulated students on their perfect SOL scores and noted the rigors have become tougher so it is a major accomplishment to receive a perfect score.  He thanked Mr. Ross and staff for hosting the meeting.  He congratulated the Spelling Bee winners. 

Mr. Wright congratulated Justin Hall on his wrestling award.  He thanked everyone for attending the meeting and Mr. Ross for hosting.  He congratulated the Spelling Bee winners and ABCD award winners.

Mr. Tucker commended the high school staff and asked them to stand and be recognized.  He stated every staff member does the right things to make our students successful. 

Mr. Kotulka thanked Mr. Ross and staff for hosting the meeting.  He congratulated all award winners.  He thanked Robert Tucker for his inspiring comments and stated he always learns something new when he talks to him.  He commended the high school staff for being brave, and their willingness to work hard for their students.  He offered an invitation, on behalf of the division cafeteria manager, to all Board members to eat lunch at one of the schools and noted the cafeteria consultant report will be presented at the April meeting.

(18-240) CONSENT AGENDA

The following items were included for approval.   

        A.  Approval of Minutes of February 5, 2018 Called Meeting and Work Session, February 19, 2018 Regular Meeting and February 22, 2018 Called Meeting 
        B. 
Approval of payment of bills
        C.  Cafeteria report
        D.  Communications/Monthly Reports

              1.  JRTC monthly report
              2. 
Classified Advisory Committee
              3.  Parent Advisory Committee

              4.  Teacher Advisory Committee
        E.   Field Trip – AHS/FCCLA students to Virginia Beach, April 12-15, 2018

MOTION: That the items listed on the consent agenda be approved as presented.

MOTION:  Mr. Franson
SECOND: Mr. Lane       
ROLL CALL VOTE: Unanimous                                     

BUDGET AND FINANCE

(18-241) BUDGET REPORT

School Operating Fund

$2,877,900.55

School Textbook Fund

$1,136,532.30

Alleghany Foundation Nursing Grant

$40,000.42

Governor’s School

$154,304.01

Scholarship

$76,793.17

Alleghany Foundation Mental Health Initiative

$0

School Capital

$1,135,411.24

Medicaid Reimbursement

$447,203.70

Technology

$0

New Tech Program

$425,630.93

Grand Total

$6,293,776.32

(18-242) ANNUAL SCHOOL DIVISION AUDIT

The fiscal year 2017 financial audit was once again performed by Robinson, Farmer, Cox Associates. The audit concluded that the School Board ended the year “in accordance with accounting principles generally accepted in the United States of America,” and offered no recommendations.

(18-243) APPROVAL OF 2018-2019 SCHOOL DIVISION OPERATING BUDGET

Mr. Kotulka presented the budget.  He recommended approval of the budget and reminded Board members the budget would be presented to the Board of Supervisors on March 28. 

MOTION:  That the Board approve the 2018-2019 Division Operating Budget, as presented by the Superintendent. 

MOTION:   Mr. Franson
SECOND:  Mr. Lane
ROLL CALL VOTE:     Mr. Franson - YES
                                    Mr. Lane - YES
                                    Mrs. Morgan - YES
                                    Mr. Persinger - NO
                                    Mrs. Seckner - YES
                                    Mr. Tucker - YES
                                    Mr. Wright - YES

(18-244) APPROVAL OF 2018-2019 CONTRACT FOR HEALTH INSURANCE SERVICES

The Commonwealth of Virginia Local Choice health benefits program provides medical, dental, vision, and wellness coverage to local governments and school divisions. Alleghany County Public Schools has been a participant in this program since 2010. Application to continue in the program for fiscal year 2019 must be received by the Virginia Department of Human Resource Management no later than April 1, 2018. The administration recommends that the school division continue to participate in The Local Choice and to continue to offer the Key Advantage 250 plan, the Key Advantage 1000 plan, and the High Deductible Health Plan/Health Savings Account plan.  The additional FY2019 costs are $98,628.

MOTION:  That the Board approve The Local Choice for health insurance services, as presented.

MOTION:  Mrs. Morgan
SECOND:  Mrs. Seckner
ROLL CALL VOTE:  Unanimous

SUPERINTENDENT REPORTS AND RECOMMENDATIONS

(18-245) CALENDAR INFORMATION

Mr. Kotulka reminded the Board of the following meetings:

- March 15, 6:00 p.m. – Called School Board meeting at the Central Office Complex
- March 22, 7:00 p.m. – Community Forum on School Safety at Gleason Forum Hall
- March 24 – Celebration of the Arts - 1:00 p.m.- 2:30 p.m. Art Show, 3:00 p.m. Concert at Bath County High School
- March 28, 6:00 p.m. – Present budget to Board of Supervisors at ACGC
- April 9-12 – New Tech visit to Arkansas
- April 10, *6:00 p.m. - Joint Board of Control at JRTC (*dinner meeting)
- April 16, 6:00 p.m. – Regular meeting at Clifton Middle School
- April monthly calendar

(18-246) NEW TECH LEADERSHIP RESIDENCY – JACKIE ALMARODE AND JOSH HAGY

Josh Hagy and Jackie Almarode, teachers at Alleghany High School, commented on their recent trip to a New Tech school in El Paso, Texas.  Some of their comments included:

  • The New Tech Leadership Residency clearly showed how far ahead Alleghany High School is in the implementation process.
  • The program provided clarity with the implementation process, which is being shared with staff.
  • We realize that the instructional strategies employed by partnering with the New Tech Network strengthens our current strategies.
  • Moving forward, Alleghany High School is examining the “why” of the New Tech Network as well as the “why we became teachers.”
  • This is our opportunity to implement the New Tech Network model the Alleghany way.

(18-247) DR. BENJAMIN WORTH – CURRICULUM FOR STUDENTS WITH DISABILITIES AT DSLCC

Dr. Benjamin Worth, Vice President of Academic Affairs at Dabney S. Lancaster Community College, presented information regarding plans to incorporate a career certification program for students with significant cognitive disabilities in the college’s curriculum.

(18-248) SPECIAL EDUCATION ANNUAL PLAN

Alleghany County Schools will continue extension of services to both elementary and secondary special education students by retaining 7 teachers, a behavior specialist, and one teaching assistant with Federal funds. The division will review future employment status of teachers currently employed, engage in performance evaluation, ensure return of current staff or actively recruit qualified personnel, and ensure student IEP annual review for goal accomplishment and necessary program revision. The division will continue to provide aides and related personnel and evaluate performance, and ensure intent to return or recruit qualified personnel.  Alleghany County Public schools will continue to fund assessment and other contracted services to students with disabilities. The division will also continue provision of appropriate therapies and psychological services including a full time psychologist. The division will retain a transition employment specialist to provide instruction and job coaching to students.  The division will continue the elementary Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) classroom. The division will continue to facilitate participation in conferences, seminars and professional development for personnel. Alleghany County Public Schools will maintain two reverse inclusion classes. This includes therapies when appropriate. Goods and services purchased will enhance and extend existing options. Transition Services including Home-visits and liaison for students transitioning from Part C to B will be provided. Tuition assistance will be provided for students in licensed settings outside the division as needed. Appropriate therapies will be provided for students as needed. Conferences will be made available to maintain and enhance teacher skills. Materials, supplies, and equipment to enrich and stabilize the existing programs will be purchased.

This plan was presented to the local Special Education Advisory Committee February 20, 2018 for their review and approval. The advisory committee approved it unanimously.  The Plan will be considered for approval at the April School Board meeting.

(18-249) SPECIAL EDUCATION REGIONAL PROGRAM APPLICATION PLANS

Dr. Heath explained she is currently working with Paul Raskopf of the Virginia Department of Education to formulate a plan for Alleghany County Public Schools (ACPS) to host a Regional Tuition Program for special education students with low incidence disabilities beginning in the 2018-2019 school year.   Since school divisions must work cooperatively in a Regional Tuition Program, tentative plans are being made for the division to work with other divisions that may include Covington City Schools and/or Bath County Schools.   Based on our current special education population, I anticipate that this program would make approximately $150,000 in additional funding available to the division for the students we have in this program. Tuition charged for students from other divisions participating would add to this number.

(18-250) SPECIAL EDUCATION LOCAL ADVISORY COMMITTEE MEMBERSHIP

Each locality is required to have a special education advisory committee. Our advisory committee meets on a quarterly basis. This committee provides required parent approval of the local special education plan for the upcoming school year each year. The committee meetings serve as a venue for discussion of existing programs and to provide parents information on special education issues.   Principals were asked to submit names of parents from each school who are willing to serve on this committee for the 2018-2019 school year. The following names were submitted:

AHS – Tracey Brogan-Black
CMS – Cassandra Brookman, Jeremy Brookman
CES – Amber Hepler
MVES – Amanda Marshall, Paula Cottrell
SES – Amanda Crawford
The Board will consider approval of this committee at the April meeting.

(18-251) REVIEW OF 2018 STAFFING PLAN FOR K-12 SUMMER SCHOOL PROGRAM

Summer school for K-8 students will be held at Mountain View Elementary School and Clifton Middle School from May 29-June 21, 2018. Summer School for students in grades 9-12 will be held at Alleghany High School May 29 through July 19, 2018.  Breakfast and lunch will be available for all students at no charge.  If new courses are offered at Alleghany High School, the cost for the course will be $200.

At this point, we anticipate the maximum number of positions as outlined below.  Recommendations for summer school employee appointments will be included among those that will be considered under the personnel section of the agenda at the next meeting.  As always, all positions are contingent upon student enrollment in the program. 

Mountain View Elementary       Shared
7 teachers                                    5 bus drivers

4 aides                                         4 bus aides
                                                    1 nurse

Clifton Middle School
                   1 speech teacher
7 teachers                                    1 Occupational Therapist

2 aides                                         1 Physical Therapist

Alleghany High School
5 teachers (each session)


(18-252) REVISION TO 2017-2018 ACADEMIC CALENDAR

The calendar revisions were reviewed.  The change from the January 25 calendar is the addition of 3 days at the end of the school year.  The make-up days are May 18, 21, and 22, 2018.  Graduation will remain on May 18. 

(18-253) REPORT ON PROXIMITY LEARNING AT CLIFTON MIDDLE SCHOOL

Sarah Rowe, principal of Clifton Middle School, explained that the class is a “distance” learning experience setup for the second semester. She stated students are captivated with the one-on-one attention with the teacher.  She noted she is seeing positive results from the program. 

Some of the advantages she noted: 

  • individualized learning
  • students don’t have to raise their hand to ask a question
  • the teacher can target specific questions
  • teacher can monitor students face-to-face
  • content is more personalized,
  • 1:1 feedback
  • fully licensed and endorsed teacher
  • there is an actual teacher, not a virtual teacher
  • teacher is focused on only our students during that class.

Some of the disadvantages she noted:

  • internet can freeze up for a few seconds
  • independent work for a 6th grader can be difficult at times, depending on the student

Mrs. Rowe noted students will be surveyed at the end of the course. 

(18-254) RESOLUTION FOR VSBA BUSINESS HONOR ROLL

The VSBA Business Honor Roll shows appreciation to a company’s ongoing support of the community’s public schools.  CVS of Covington, Blue Ridge Lumber Company, and Northwest True Value were recommended as nominees for the VSBA Business Honor Roll. 

MOTION:  That the Board nominate CVS of Covington, Blue Ridge Lumber Company, and Northwest True Value to the VSBA Business Honor Roll.

MOTION:   Mr. Wright
SECOND:  Mrs. Seckner
ROLL CALL VOTE:  Unanimous

(18-255) RESOLUTION IN SUPPORT OF LOCAL GOVERNMENT EDUCATION WEEK

The resolution supports April 1-7, 2018 as Local Government Education Week. 

MOTION:  That the Board recognize April 1-7, 2018 as Local Government Education Week.

MOTION:   Mr. Franson
SECOND:  Mrs. Morgan
ROLL CALL VOTE:  Unanimous 

(18-256) CAREER AND TECHNICAL EDUCATION LOCAL PLAN

The Perkins Grant provides funding for the Career and Technical   Education programs.  In Alleghany County Public Schools the funds received from this federal grant are used to support programs in Technology Education, Business Education, Family and Consumer Sciences, Health Sciences, and Agricultural Education.  A draft version of the plan was provided.  Once the Spring Student Record Collection Report is completed, the plan will be updated.  The final CTE plan will be presented at the April School Board meeting for approval. 

(18-257) RFP – DIGITAL COPIERS LEASE AND SERVICE

The division’s three-year contract with Ricoh USA will expire on July 31, 2018.  An RFP for Digital Copiers Lease and Service has been submitted for advertisement.  A non-mandatory, pre-proposal conference will be held on March 27, 2018.  A contract recommendation will be offered during the May 21, 2018 board meeting.

(18-258) ONE-TO-ONE INITIATIVE UPDATE

An update on the One-to-One initiative as it pertains to:

  1. Parent Meetings; Grades 1-4
  2. Staff Training Update
  3. Kajeet Usage Update

(18-259) CHROMEBOOK PURCHASE FOR GRADES 1-4

Per Phase III of the Vision 2020 plan, devices will be purchased for grades one through four during the 17-18 school year.  Devices will purchased from Sterling Computers using contract number NCPA 01-42.

Students in grades one and two will use touchscreen models. (265 units)  Students in grades three and four will use non-touchscreen models. (296 units)  Asset tagging will be completed by the vendor and devices will arrive pre-configured for use on the division’s Google domain.  The total estimated cost is $191,476.

MOTION:  That the Board approve the purchase of Chromebooks for Grades 1-4 at each elementary school.

MOTION:   Mr. Wright
SECOND:  Mr. Lane
ROLL CALL VOTE:  Unanimous

(18-260) CAPITAL IMPROVEMENT AND OPERATIONAL MAINTENANCE UPDATE

The reports were reviewed.     

(18-261) SPRING/SUMMER CAPITAL IMPROVEMENT PROJECTS

Ben Truett reviewed the spring and summer capital projects. 

(18-262) OVERVIEW OF SCHOOL RESOURCE OFFICER PROGRAM

Alleghany County Public Schools funds two school resource officers through the Alleghany County Sherriff’s Department.  Chris Fisher provides oversight of the SRO program on behalf of the Sheriff’s Department.   He also serves as the DARE officer.  Clinton Phillips is assigned at Alleghany High School and began with the division in August 2015.  Laura Rogers is assigned to Clifton Middle School and began with the division in February 2016.  Officers Fisher and Rogers thanked the Board for their continued support and discussed their services. 

(18-263) APPROVAL OF REVISED JOB DESCRIPTIONS FOR TESTING AND TECHNOLOGY RESOURCE TEACHER, BUS DRIVER AND FULL-TIME UNASSIGNED BUS DRIVER

  • Revision of TTRT reflecting a 210 day contract
  • Revision of Bus Driver amending outdated language
  • New Unassigned Bus Driver

MOTION:  That the Board approve the revisions to the job descriptions, as presented. 

MOTION:   Mr. Wright
SECOND:  Mr. Lane
ROLL CALL VOTE:  Unanimous

 

(18-264) POLICY REVISIONS

a.  Policy DL-R, Payroll Compensation Schedule

Revisions are recommended to Policy DL-R – Payroll Compensation Schedule to update for changes recommended to take effect July 1, 2018. The changes to take effect center around eliminating paper payroll checks for any employee hired on or after January 1, 2010, as permitted under legal statutes.

b.  Policy JHCF, Student Wellness

When the Division Wellness Policy was reviewed by the VDOE Programs Specialist for School Nutrition Programs in the fall, a policy revision was recommended. The policy proposed was drafted by the Division Cafeteria Manager, the Director of Special Education, the Director of Instruction, the Director of Assessment and Accountability, the School Nurse Coordinator, and a health and physical education teacher based on the template recommended to the Division by the Program Specialist for the Office of School Nutrition Programs from VDOE. This policy was considered and approved by the School Health Advisory Board on Thursday, January 25, 2018 and provided as information to the Board at the February meeting.

MOTION: That the Board approve revisions to Policy JHCF, Student Wellness, as presented.

MOTION:   Mr. Franson
SECOND:
  Mrs. Seckner
ROLL CALL VOTE:  Unanimous  

OTHER BUSINESS

(18-265) ADDITION TO AGENDA

CLOSED SESSION

(18-266) CODE OF VIRGINIA: PERSONNEL MATTERS 2.2-3711.A.1., STUDENT MATTERS 2.2-3711.A.2, REAL PROPERTY 2.23711.A.3, AND SCHOOL SAFETY REPORTS

MOTION: That the School Board enter closed session to discuss Personnel Matters, Student Matters, Real Property, and School Safety Reports as authorized by the Code of Virginia Sections 2.2-3711.A.1, 2.2-3711.A.2, 2.2-3711.A.3, and 2.2-3711.A.19.

MOTION:   Mr. Wright
SECOND:  Mrs. Morgan
ROLL CALL VOTE:  Unanimous
TIME: 8:14 p.m.

 

MOTION: That the School Board return to open session from closed session.

MOTION:   Mr. Wright     
SECOND:  Mrs. Morgan
ROLL CALL VOTE:  Unanimous
TIME: 8:44 p.m.

CERTIFICATION OF EXECUTIVE SESSION

The Chairman requests a motion to certify that to the best of each member’s knowledge:

  1. Only public business matters lawfully exempted from opening meeting requirements by Virginia law were discussed in the closed meeting to which this certification applies; and
  2. Only such public business matters as were identified in the motion convening the closed meeting were heard, discussed or considered by the School Board.

                                    MOTION:   Mrs. Seckner  
                                    SECOND:  Mr. Franson
​                                    ROLL CALL VOTE:    Mr. Franson – YES
                                                                        Mr. Lane - YES
                                                                        Mrs. Morgan - YES
                                                                        Mr. Persinger - YES
                                                                        Mrs. Seckner - YES
                                                                        Mr. Tucker - YES
                                                                        Mr. Wright - YES                                 

                                                                        7 -YES          0 - ABSENT          0 -NO  
                                   TIME: 8:45 p.m.           

          Randall Tucker_School Board Chairman           Lorie Bess_School Board Clerk
 Chairman, Alleghany County School Board    
                    Clerk

PERSONNEL

(18-267) PERSONNEL ACTIONS

MOTION: That the Board approve all personnel actions as discussed in closed session and recommended by the Superintendent. 

MOTION:   Mr. Franson      
SECOND:  Mr. Lane  
ROLL CALL VOTE:     Mr. Franson - YES
                                    Mr. Lane - YES
                                    Mrs. Morgan - YES
                                    Mr. Persinger - NO
                                    Mrs. Seckner - YES
                                    Mr. Tucker - YES
                                    Mr. Wright - YES

 

ADJOURNMENT

MOTION:  That the March 19, 2018 meeting of the Alleghany County School Board be adjourned.

MOTION:  Mrs. Morgan 
TIME: 8:46 p.m.

         Randall Tucker_School Board Chairman            Lorie Bess_School Board Clerk
Chairman, Alleghany County School Board  
                             Clerk