Somers Public Schools
February 26, 2018 7:00 PM
Board of Education Meeting
1. CALL TO ORDER
Discussion

The regular meeting of the Board of Education was called to order at 7:03 p.m. by Chairman Devlin in the Mabelle B. Avery Middle School Board of Education Meeting Room. 


2. PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE
3. AWARDS AND RECOGNITIONS
3.1. Recognition for Halle Raina of SHS
Discussion

The Board of Education recognized Halle Raina, Freshman at SHS, for her innovative graphic design for the proposed SPS Budget.  Superintendent Czapla challenged students to produce a graphic design, and Halle demonstrated a great understanding of the project expectations.  The BOE presented her with a gift.

4. STUDENT REPRESENTATIVES' REPORT
Discussion

Student representatives were absent due to illness.

5. APPROVAL OF MINUTES
Attachments
6. AUDIENCE TO CITIZENS/STAFF/STUDENTS
7. CORRESPONDENCE
8. OPPORTUNITY TO ADD/DELETE AGENDA ITEMS
9. CONSENT AGENDA
9.1. Warrant of 2-12-18
Rationale

The Board is to review the warrant of bills for 2-12-18.

Attachments
9.2. Warrant of 2/26/18
Rationale

The Board is to review the warrant of bills for 2-26-18.

Attachments
9.3. Resignation of SHS Nurse
Rationale

Ms. Katherine Burchard resignation letter as of 2-21-18.

Attachments
9.4. Resignation of IT Specialist
Rationale

Brian Silliber resignation as of 2/22/2018 is attached.

Attachments
10. NEW BUSINESS
10.1. 1st Warning - Somers DBS Policy 4118.11 - PERSONNEL - CERTIFICATED/NON-CERTIFICATED
Rationale

The Policy Committee recommends that the Board review 1st Warning - Somers DBS Policy 4118.11 for passage at the next meeting.

Attachments
Discussion

Any questions should be directed to the Policy Committee.

10.2. 1st Warning Somers DBS Policy 0521 - Nondiscrimination
Rationale

The Policy Committee recommends that the Board review Somers Policy DBS 0521 on Nondiscrimination for passage at the next meeting,

Attachments
Discussion

Any questions should be directed to the Policy Committee.

10.3. 1st Warning - Somers DBS Policy 5118.11 - Resident Students
Rationale

The Policy Committee recommends that the Board review DBS Policy 5118.11 on Resident Students for passage at the next meeting.

Attachments
Discussion

Any questions should be directed to the Policy Committee.

10.4. 1st Warning Somers DBS Policy 5141.3 - Students Health
Rationale

The Policy Committee recommends the Board review Policy 5141.3 Students - Health for passage at the next meeting.

Attachments
Discussion

Any questions should be directed to the Policy Committee.

10.5. 1st Warning - Somers DBS Policy 5145.5111 -Students - Sexual Harassment
Rationale

The Policy Committee recommends the Board review Somers Policy DBS 5145.5111 -Students - Sexual Harassment for passage at the next meeting. 

Attachments
Discussion

Any questions should be directed to the Policy Committee.

10.6. 1st Warning - Somers DBS Policy 6172.5 - Title I Parent Involvement
Rationale

The Policy Committee recommends that the Board review Somers BDS Policy 6172.5 - Title I Parent Involvement for passage at the next meeting.

Attachments
Discussion

Any questions should be directed to the Policy Committee.

11. OLD BUSINESS
11.1. SPS 2018-2019 Calendar
Rationale

The Board to review and approve the 2018-2019 School Calendar.  There was a change in the June 2019 dates.

Attachments
11.2. 2nd Warning DBS Policy 6146 - Graduation Requirements
Rationale

The Policy Committee recommends that the Board of Education accept the changes in the  DBS Policy 6146 - Graduation Requirements

Attachments
11.3. The 2018-2019 Somers Public Schools Budget
Rationale

The Board will vote on the 2018-2019 Budget

Attachments
12. ADMINISTRATIVE REPORTS
12.1. MBA Staff Member give a Technology Update
Rationale

MBA Teacher Mrs. Jackie Rivard will give a presentation on Technology at MBA.

Discussion

Mr. C. Krevolin, MBA Principal, introduced Mrs. J. Rivard, MBA Language Arts Teacher, to discuss how the use of technology has been integrated to purposely support the curriculum and Common Core Standards.  Students and staff utilize the Chromebook.  Google Classroom is a program students use to receive assignments, send out materials, as well as organizing students in classes.  Teachers and students may also communicate with each other.  Students are held accountable for submitting their work which marks it as complete.  Students receive a weekly document whereby they either journal, practice SBAC, or Twitterature.  Spelling quizzes are still on paper; however, vocabulary quizzes are performed on a Google Doc where the information is compiled to a spreadsheet, automatically graded, and updates the teacher on anyone receiving a 70% or lower.  Weekly spelling is introduced through the Kahoot program.  C. Albano, seventh-grade student, described how she used Google Drawings to create blackout poetry whereby certain words are highlighted in text and the rest of the words are "blacked out."  The highlighted words are then cropped and displayed on images/background pertaining to the poem.  B. Rogers, seventh-grade student, described how he created a slideshow during Genius Hour on a specific topic (i.e. Greek Mythology) containing notes, citations, and images.  The slideshow was then presented to a small group. 







12.2. Review of SESA Pension Report
Rationale

The Salary and Negotiating Committee will present the Board the SESA Pension Report.

Discussion

Chairman Devlin introduced T. Forma and K. Nichols of Morgan Stanley to the BOE to review the SESA Pension.  The BOE members were provided a packet by Morgan Stanley.  They work extensively with public institutions and help to invest in a conservative manner.  They currently are working with the employee pension plan in the Town of Somers.  They stated they would work with the BOE and the BOE policies as an independent institution, developing and/or modifying investment policies.  Superintendent Czapla recommended the Board vote on accepting Morgan Stanley to represent the SESA Pension at the next Board meeting.

12.3. Curriculum Report on World Language and Math
Rationale

Dr. Irene Zytka will update the Board of Curriculum for World Language and Math.

Attachments
Discussion

Superintendent Czapla introduced Dr. I. Zytka, Director of Curriculum, to update the BOE on World Language and Mathematics in SPS.  In World Language, SES students are exposed to the Spanish culture through Comprehensive Input strategies.  There have been no major changes in the SES curriculum.  At MBA, sixth graders are practicing their executive functioning and implementing it in their organizational skills (i.e. taking notes off of the whiteboard in the target language, including dates on each class, etc.)  Sixth-graders have also incorporated more culture-based projects.  Spanish students were assigned a Spanish-speaking country, researched the country, and prepared a presentation.  French students will be assigned a French-speaking country and will work in pairs as "travel agents" and prepare a brochure.  Seventh and eighth graders are piloting the use of IXL Spanish in their Chromebooks.  At SHS, C. Gustafson, French Teacher, was recognized as a semi-finalist for CT Teacher of the Year.  Level 5 Honors Spanish students are doing peer presentations.  SHS will add a new French I course and will complete the implementation of a new book series.  In the future, the World Language Department would like to explore a more technology-based curriculum to enhance listening and speaking skills as well as improve upon a more vertical alignment among all three schools.  In Mathematics, there has been significant progress with inputting the curriculum into Atlas.  At SES, useful information has been obtained from the NWEA Growth testing.  The Growth Mindset initiative has helped students stay positive.  In the math workshop, students are instructed in a lesson and then work in small stations.  Technology is incorporated as a station activity.  MAP Screeners are used for practice and as a teaching tool.  There may be a possible need for additional tutors in the future.  At MBA, students are assigned two "mappers" per week which will generate NWEA MAP test scores to personalize study recommendations per student.  The sixth grade math curriculum differed this year by teaching fractions and decimals, integers and equations prior to teaching ratios.  M. Luginbuhl, Sixth Grade Math Teacher, is working with UCONN to test math problem solving software, "MathBrainius," and will report on the quality of the product and the feasibility of using it in the classroom.  There continues to be a need for a Math Interventionist at MBA.  At SHS, Honors Calculus enrollment doubled.  Students in an AP course had to sign a contract committing to take the AP exam and implementing a grade minimum in order to be exempt from their final exam.  Teachers are minimizing student reliance on calculator use.  This year, Elementary Functions and Trigonometry courses were streamlined into a Precalculus course.  There is a course proposal for Pre-Algebra.  Data analysis will continue to be conducted in order to decide on curriculum and instruction as a district.  IXL and NWEA screeners will continue to be analyzed.   

12.4. Superintendent Update
Rationale

Our Superintendent will update the Board on School issues.

Discussion

Superintendent Czapla distributed a draft of the Campus Review to BOE members.  He decided to consolidate information and distribute it to every resident three times a year.  He will also be working with consultants to analyze possible utility cost savings.  He is awaiting responses from vendors regarding a new phone system.  Based on the success of the After School Program, Superintendent Czapla has had conversations with the Parks and Rec. Dept. and will be looking into a Before School Program based on the needs from parents which would have no impact on the budget.  In light of the tragedy in Florida, he will be looking into the security of SPS.  A task force has been convened.  Evacuation protocols, access control, communications, and potential staffing needs will be analyzed.  Two vulnerability studies will be conducted by local and State police as well as an independent contractor who is Chief of Security in a school system.  He will relay the results to the BOE members.  Communications will also be sent out to parents regarding the budget as well as security plans.  

13. COMMITTEE REPORTS
13.1. BUDGET
Discussion

No report.

13.2. CURRICULUM
Discussion

No report.

13.3. POLICY
Discussion

A. Kirkpatrick reported that the committee is catching up and working on Board bylaws.  There will be five bylaws in March.  The next meeting will be held in April.

13.4. SALARY & NEGOTIATION
Discussion

No report.

13.5. PLANNING
Discussion

No report.

13.6. OTHER COMMITTEES
Discussion

None.

14. OTHER
15. ADJOURNMENT