Somers Public Schools
November 26, 2018 7:00 PM
BOE MEETING
1. CALL TO ORDER
Discussion

The regular meeting of the Board of Education was called to order at 7:00 p.m. by Rick Lees, Secretary of the Board, in the Mabelle B. Avery Board of Education meeting room.

2. PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE
3. STUDENT REPRESENTATIVES' REPORT
Discussion

Somers High School representatives, Emma Felix and Fiona Cheyney, updated the BOE on SHS events.  Winter sports have begun.  The football team is undefeated and plays in the quarter final on 11/27/18 in Enfield.  NCCC concert was a success.  The concert was held in Ellington on 11/16/18.  The band, chorus, and drama annual NYC field trip sign-up began last week.  They will see a play on Broadway.  The drama production, "Almost Maine," will occur on Friday, 11/30/18, and Saturday, 12/1/18.  Tech week is off to a good start.  The Semiformal will occur on 12/6/18 and is hosted by the Senior class.  They continue collecting string lights from the community.  The Unity Team is now led by Mrs. Dzurenda.  The GSA Club will hold a LGBTQ seminar.  There will be a seminar on Thursday, 11/29/18, to educate parents and students on vaping dangers.  The Student Advisory Council fundraised for Loaves and Fishes.  Teachers and a student have participated in No Shave November.  Students may vote during lunch, and donations will go to Hartford Hospital.  The first quarter has finished at SHS.  

4. APPROVAL OF MINUTES
4.1. Draft of November 12, 2018 Minutes
Rationale

The Board is to review and approve the minutes of November 12, 2018.

Attachments
5. AUDIENCE TO CITIZENS/STAFF/STUDENTS
6. CORRESPONDENCE
7. OPPORTUNITY TO ADD/DELETE AGENDA ITEMS
8. CONSENT AGENDA
8.1. Warrant of November 26, 2018
Rationale

Board will review and consent to the November 26, 2018 warrant of bills in the amount of $203,718.66.

Attachments
8.2. Resignation of Somers High Science Teacher, Mr. James Folger
Rationale

Mr. James Folger, Somers High School Science teacher, handed in his letter of resignation on November 15, 2018.

8.3. 2nd Warning Somers Policy DBS 4148 4248 Cert/NonCert Employee Protections
Rationale

2nd Warning Somers Policy DBS 4148 4248 Cert/NonCert Employee Protections

Attachments
Discussion

Questions may be directed to Anne Kirkpatrick or any member of the Policy Committee.

8.4. 2nd Warning Somers Policy DBS 4148.1 -to Delete
Rationale

2nd Warning Somers Policy DBS 4148.1 -to Delete

Attachments
Discussion

Questions may be directed to Anne Kirkpatrick or any member of the Policy Committee.

8.5. 2nd Warning Somers Policy DBS 5144.1 Student - Restraint
Rationale

2nd Warning Somers Policy DBS 5144.1 Student - Restraint

Attachments
Discussion

Questions may be directed to Anne Kirkpatrick or any member of the Policy Committee.

9. NEW BUSINESS
10. OLD BUSINESS
11. ADMINISTRATIVE REPORTS
11.1. SBAC Cohort Report
Rationale

Dr. Irene Zytka will go over the SBAC Cohort Report and answer questions from the Board.

Attachments
Discussion

Dr. Irene Zytka, Director of Curriculum, updated the BOE on the SBAC Cohort Report.  Superintendent Czapla stated that he wanted Dr. Zytka to do a deep-dive analysis to better understand scores, what they mean, and what we need to do.  SBAC testing is currently done in grades 3-8 in Math and English Language Arts.  Dr. Zytka analyzed the data in a variety of ways.  The State recently presented a growth model analysis of SBAC.  For the most part, Somers is above State average; however, there are areas in need of improvement.  Dr. Zytka met with the principals in order to better understand the problem areas.  Individually, students have shown very good growth. 

Dr. Zytka stated that Somers has not been utilizing optional SBAC interim assessments where students are tested after finishing certain content areas.  The MBA Math and Language Arts departments are going to examine the interim SBAC assessments during PD on 12/7/18.  The Math department will then map out when to administer these assessments for the remainder of the year.  SES will examine their SBAC assessment calendar for grades 3-5 this summer for the 2019-20 school year.  SES will also determine which Math textbooks to purchase for 2019-20 that will align with Common Core.  Dr. Zytka also stated that they will be re-evaluating the calendar so that SBAC and NWEA testing is more spread out.  Currently, students have NWEA testing within two weeks of SBAC testing.  The format, structure, and language are different between the two tests.  Also, students may be burnt out by all of the testing at once.  Another finding includes the amount of content and decreased amount of time to teach certain topics in the fourth and fifth grades.  Grade 5 may explore reorganizing in 2019-20 to have teachers teach subject-specific content.  Professional Development in December of 2018 will offer learning how to utilize the new IXL diagnostic to be used in conjunction with SBAC interim assessment results.  Also, equity issues at MBA will be examined in Language Arts and Math (i.e. number of teachers, blocks of instruction, and specialist/tutors).  


11.2. Quarterly Budget Update
Rationale

Mr. William Boutwell will review the quarterly budget report with the Board and answer any questions they may have.

Attachments
Discussion

Mr. Bill Boutwell, Director of Business Services, updated the BOE on the 2018-19 budget.  The budget report is a guide; however, the budget is fluid due to unforeseen variables.  There will be savings in some salary categories.  Legal fees are the predominant expenses.  Special education plays a major role in managing the budget.  A 50% spending cap has been instituted this year as in years past.  Any further questions may be directed to Mr. Boutwell.    

11.3. District Grant Updates
Rationale

Mr. William Boutwell will review the District Grant Updates with the Board and answer any questions they may have.

Attachments
Discussion

Mr. Bill Boutwell, Director of Business Services, updated the BOE on district grants.  He included attachments for current grants as well as a ten-year history of grants.  The current grants include two-year grants and one-year grants. Most of the funds in the 2017-19 grants were utilized in 2018.  Funds from the 2018-20 grants are being used this year.  There hasn't been any significant change in the one-year grants.  The Town of Somers Education Grants were also discussed.  The ECS (Education Cost Sharing) Grant increased in 2018-19 after decreasing in 2017-18.

11.4. Superintendent's Update
Rationale

Our Superintendent will update the Board on current events.

Discussion

Superintendent Czapla stated that a budget is being assembled.  The strategic planning is proceeding well.  The data phase is complete and will be analyzed and prioritized at the next full-group meeting on 12/13/18.  He reported that the strategic planning participation has been enthusiastic.  He's excited for the end product which will drive the district to newer heights.  The Vaping Seminar will be held on Thursday, 11/29/18.  He will send a reminder through school messenger.

12. COMMITTEE REPORTS
12.1. CURRICULUM
Discussion

No report.

12.2. POLICY
Discussion

Anne Kirkpatrick reported that the committee met prior to the BOE meeting on 11/26/18.  There will be six new policies to warn for the next BOE meeting.  The next Policy Committee meeting is TBD.

12.3. SALARY & NEGOTIATION
Discussion

Superintendent Czapla reported that the next Salary and Negotiations meeting will be held on 12/10/18 at 6:30 p.m.  The former group who managed the pension will update the BOE.

12.4. PLANNING
Discussion

Superintendent Czapla reported that SPS is in the process of receiving requests for qualifications on the track and putting together bid specifications for other projects.  Most projects are targeted for 2019.  Sarah Bollinger will email Superintendent Czapla questions on line items to report back at the next BOE meeting.  

13. OTHER
Discussion

Anne Kirkpatrick updated the BOE on the CABE Convention that she attended on 11/16/18.  She distributed a summary handout to members. There was an update on task forces and workgroups.  There was discussion at the convention regarding social and emotional learning in pre-K through 3rd grade and evaluating emotional intelligence.  There was a speaker from Milford Public Schools who discussed changes they have made in their K-2 curriculum by supporting the whole child with the idea of growth mindset versus fixed mindset.  

14. ADJOURNMENT