Board of Education

Board of Education
40 South Second Street
Oakland, MD 21550
Phone 301.334.8931
Fax 301.334.7621

Minutes April 13, 1999

 

MINUTES

 

MEETING OF THE GARRETT COUNTY BOARD OF EDUCATION

Oakland, Maryland 21550

 

Tuesday, April 13, 1999

 

___________

 

 

        Part I - Call to Order

    Mr. James M. Raley, President of the Garrett County Board of Education, called the meeting to order at approximately 2:40 p.m. Members in attendance included Mr. Rodney L. Durst, Vice-President, Mrs. Madeleine Collins, Mrs. Camilla Rawe and Mrs. Charlotte Sebold, associate members, and Dr. Wendell Teets, Superintendent of Schools.

        Part II -Annual Student Council Presentation

    Mr. Raley explained that he had a call from Mr. Bill Carlson, principal, who said the Northern Middle student council was unable to be present at the meeting due to unforeseen circumstances. However, Mr. Carlson told Mr. Raley the student council=s concerns were criteria for students who may or may not be allowed to participate in curricular and co-curricular activities based on behavior-related problems, citing the reluctance of teachers and chaperones to take trips with Abehavior-problem@ students for whom they must be responsible. The students wanted the Board to be aware that the Northern Middle Handbook addresses this and asked for the Board=s support in this matter.

    Northern High School advisor, Michelle Harman, introduced Allison Martinez and Daniel Rounds. Miss Martinez noted that students at Northern High were concerned about the use of agenda books, noting that if they must be used, they should be used county-wide. Dr. Teets explained that use of agenda books is a school-based decision and that the uniqueness of each school predisposes how or if a school uses an agenda book. Similar discussion ensued relating to backpack usage. The Board suggested that students work with their school administration regarding these issues. Mr. Rounds thanked the Board for their support in regard to Northern High=s need for an auxiliary gym, noting the need for better practice situations for competitive teams. He also inquired as to the feasibility of the county sponsoring an activity bus for the pick-up and delivery of students who are interested in after school sports and other activities. Dr. Teets and the Board told Mr. Rounds this was an excellent suggestion and would be considered further. In response to a question from Miss Martinez regarding allowing the student Board member to vote on student issues, Board members noted that, in their capacity as elected officials, Board members vote on issues as they feel the electorate would want them to vote. It was explained that the student member=s input during discussion is welcomed and carefully considered. Other discussion centered on the need for more Advanced Placement classes.

    Dawn Panther, Southern Middle School advisor, introduced Shawn Shifflet, Allison Richter and Brian Crabtree. Mrs. Panther noted that the newly-formed Southern Middle Student Council is comprised of a representative from each homeroom and has been active in promoting drug and alcohol awareness and building pride within their school. Through the use of a suggestion box, the students found that items of concerns among their peers were the need for a wider food selection in the cafeteria, the high price of a la carte items, having another pull-out day to assist students who are failing, temperature fluctuations in some classrooms, conditions of boys= bathrooms, wearing hats in school, more walk-around time, and bookbag usage. The Board suggested that these matters be directed to the appropriate administrator for further review.

    Lowell Leitzel, Southern High School advisor, introduced Andi Bender, Emily Nemith, Laura Hollingsworth, Stephanie Forman, and Amanda Pagenhardt. Miss Bender addressed a concern regarding the inadequate ventilation in the math and science departments. Dr. Teets noted that an engineering problem was found and corrected and that timers have been reprogrammed. He will continue to look into this matter. Miss Nemith asked about the plan of action for the gym renovation project. In response to Miss Hollingsworth=s question regarding the timeline for the wiring projects at Southern, Mr. Chuck Trautwein, Computer Resource Teacher, and Dr. Teets noted that work is proceeding and wiring is being done in the evenings. System testing is scheduled to begin in May. Miss Forman stated the need for consistency in the weighting of honors and AP classes, and asked that inconsistencies in weighting of math and English classes be reviewed, as well. Dr. McCartney noted that this issue will be further addressed at staff development sessions this summer where insight from teachers will help to resolve any discrepancies. Miss Pagenhardt commented on the students= appreciation for the funds available which allow student council representatives to attend conventions.

    Mr. David Mayfield, County Council advisor, thanked Dr. Teets, the Board and the student Board member for their support and the opportunity to allow student representatives to present their concerns. He also expressed his appreciation to the four advisors and student councils for their efforts, noting it has been a pleasure working with them. Dr. Teets and the Board thanked the students for their thoughtful presentations and commended the advisors and representatives for their excellent work.

        Part III - Public Comment

    After a brief break, the Board reconvened at 4:20 p.m. There was no public comment at this time.

        Part IV - Executive Session

    Upon a motion by Mr. Durst, seconded by Mrs. Sebold, the Board of Education unanimously agreed to move to executive session at 3:35 p.m. in accordance with Public School Law 4-106 and Section 10-508 of the State Government Title for the purpose of discussing personnel matters that affect one or more individuals. All members were in attendance for the executive session. Dr. Teets; Dr. Brenda McCartney, Assistant Superintendent of Curriculum and Instruction; and Mr. Ervin Fink, Director of Finance and Human Resources were present during all or part of the executive session. During executive session, the Board reviewed a resignation, retirements and the retirement incentive program, an appointment, personal leave without pay, professional and sabbatical leaves, volunteer coaches, tenure recommendations, and consideration of student Board member candidates.

        Part V - Reopening of Public Session

    At 5:45 p.m. the Board reconvened in public session. Miss Lisa Beeman, student Board member, joined the meeting at this time. Mr. Raley asked the assembly to observe a moment of silence, after which he led the group in the Pledge of Allegiance to the Flag of the United States of America.

        Part VI - Acceptance of Agenda

    Upon a motion by Mrs. Rawe, seconded by Mrs. Collins, the Board unanimously approved the agenda as drafted.

        Part VII - Announcements

    In addition to events listed on the school activity calendar, the following events were noted:

• Northern High School was very successful at the Regional Science Expo, winning 34 of 69 awards presented.

• The Board will sponsor a ARelay for Life@ team which is a community celebration dedicated to present and former cancer patients, their families and friends on June 11-12, 1999. The team will raise funds for the American Cancer Society.

• PIVOT Breakfast on April 20, 1999, will be attended by Mrs. Sebold, Mrs. Collins, Mrs. Rawe, and Dr. Teets.

• Success Nights are May 19th for high schools and June 2nd for middle schools.

• Mr. Raley plans to attend the MABE Conference on June 24-25, 1999.

• Mr. Durst will attend MABE Task Force meeting April 15th and the executive meeting on April 21st.

• Dr. Teets noted that a local aerobics team has won a national title - another example of our students succeeding.

    Miss Beeman distributed copies of The Viking, Northern High School=s newspaper, to the Board members.

        Part VIII - Approval of Minutes of March 1, 1999 and March 10, 1999

    Upon a motion by Mrs. Collins, seconded by Mrs. Rawe, the Minutes of March 1, 1999, were unanimously accepted as presented. Upon a motion by Mrs. Sebold, seconded by Mrs. Collins, the Minutes of March 10, 1999, were unanimously accepted as presented.

        Part IX - Administration

    Mr. Michael Sines, Director of Facilities, Maintenance and Operations, presented the Swan Meadow School project bid proposals, noting there are two components to the bidBmechanical and renovating/replacing the existing water system. Dr. Teets explained that bidders were made aware that the project award is contingent upon state funding, and recommended that the mechanical upgrade bid be awarded to the Excel-Merit Mechanical Contractor (EMMCO) in the amount of $72,977. Upon a motion from Mr. Durst, seconded by Mrs. Rawe, the Board unanimously approved awarding the mechanical bid to EMMCO, pending funding. Mr. Sines also noted that Wayne=s Water >N= Wells would be awarded the bid in the amount of $7,800 to complete the construction of the new water system for Swan Meadow School.

    Mr. Art Refosco, Director of Transportation, reviewed the revisions to Administrative Procedure 855.2201 Off Highway Loading and Unloading Zones for School Sponsored Extra-Curricular Activities, noting the deletion of stops at Fox=s Pizza Den, Finzel Amoco, Grantsville School and Red House School, and the additions of stops at BP Station in McHenry, Edwards Exxon in Grantsville, Route 40 Elementary School, and the Otterbein Church in Swanton. The Board relayed to Mr. Refosco that the Northern High School Student Council discussed the need for an activity bus.

    Mr. Refosco shared with the Board a revision to Attachment #2 (Bus Pass) of Administrative Procedure 855.41 Issuing Student Bus Passes and Permission Slips. He noted that the sentence AThis signature indicates that the applicant is the legal guardian of the named student@ was added to address a concern when a parent may not be the legal guardian of a student. Discussion followed regarding the procedure for issuing bus passes. Mr. Refosco noted the transportation department issues 700-900 bus passes at the beginning of each school year.

    Mr. Refosco explained the revisions to Administrative Procedure 856.41 Spare Buses, noting the revisions would allow contractors to purchase spare buses, but that the buses would remain under the authority guidelines of the Board of Education=s transportation department who would continue to monitor the use and scheduling of the buses. Mr. Refosco said the revisions were discussed with six representatives of the Bus Contractor=s Association and that five members were in favor of the changes. Discussion continued as to the cost effectiveness of the changes, county geographical considerations, and how spare bus contracts will be awarded. Mr. Refosco also noted that the Board will retain a couple of spare buses for evacuation and emergency purposes.

        Part X - Instruction

    Mr. Chuck Trautwein, Computer Resource Teacher, shared with the Board the Technology Literacy Challenge Fund (TLCF) Proposal Summary for FY 2000, explaining that this is the third year of the grant. Mr. Trautwein noted plans for expenditure of the Title III funds administered by MSDE are to advance the four goals proposed by the federal government:

• All teachers will have the training and support they need to help all students learn through computers and through the information superhighway;

• All teachers will have modern computers in their classrooms;

• Every classroom and library media center will be connected to the information superhighway; and

• Effective and engaging software and on-line resources will be an integral part of every curriculum.

and the local program goal:

• Students will use technology to work collaboratively with other students in and out of their classroom to complete a project or product that meets some curricular end.

    Mr. Trautwein explained that funds would be used to continue the Technology Resource program, provide staff development, and to provide an additional computer per classroom at Broad Ford and Grantsville Elementary Schools.

    Mr. Trautwein introduced Mr. Michael Pula, computer teacher at Northern Middle School, who has been nominated by Garrett County as an exceptional computer teacher and was recognized by Maryland Instructional Computer Coordinators Association (MICCA) as the Garrett County Public School Computer Educator of the Year at their recent conference. Dr. Teets presented Mr. Pula with a plaque and stated it was an honor to recognize another outstanding teacher. The Board thanked Mr. Pula for attending the meeting and offered their congratulations.

    Mrs. Pam Neal, Coordinator of the Professional Development Center and Supervisor of Staff Development, relayed to the Board that three teachers, Mrs. Michelle Harman of Northern High School, Mr. Bruce Taliaferro of Southern High School, and Ms. Gayle Farrar of Southern Middle School are candidates for National Board Teacher Certification. Mrs. Neal explained that the rigorous process to become nationally certified, which includes compiling a portfolio, takes a one-year cycle, and is sponsored by the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards. Dr. McCartney noted that the fee to apply of $2,000 per candidate will be funded two-thirds by the state, and one-third with local monies.

        Part XI - Public Comment

    There was no public comment at 7:00 p.m.

        Part XII - Personnel

    Dr. Teets made the following personnel recommendations:

Resignation: Margaret Brock, bus assistant, effective 4/6/99

             Retirements:     Wilda W. Massi, Director of Pupil Services, effective 3/15/99

                                         Harold Hudnall, Music Teacher, Dennett Road, effective 7/1/99

                                        Henrietta M. Lease, Director of Curriculum and Instruction 9-12, effective 7/1/99

                                        Sheila J. Russell, SEP Teacher, Broad Ford, effective 7/1/99

                                        Jeanne S. Whitehair, DP/E Child Resource Teacher, Dennett Road, effective 7/1/99

Appointment: Dale Opel, Custodian IV, Grantsville, effective 4/19/99

Sabbatical Leave: Chloe Ann Watson, School Psychologist, in place of Sharon Platter, who declined

Tenure Granted to the following teachers:    Bonnie Frederick, Art, Dennett Road

                                                                              Susan Friend, Classroom, Kitzmiller

                                                                             Cynthia Glass, Guidance Counselor, Southern High

                                                                             Janet Gregory, Math Resource, Dennett Road

                                                                             Mary Ann Hare, Title I, Broad Ford

                                                                             Susan Hillen, Classroom, Yough Glades

                                                                            Christopher Jones, Music, Grantsville

                                                                            Melinda Lewis, English, Northern High

                                                                            W. Sue Liller, Classroom, Crellin

                                                                            Lizabeth McDowell, Science, Northern High

                                                                            Paul Miller, Science, Northern High

                                                                            Helen Stephens, Language Arts/Math, Northern Middle

                                                                            Linda Stephens, Classroom, Crellin

                                                                            Carla Swearman, Classroom, Crellin

    Additionally, Dr. Teets recommended that the Board approve the Voluntary Retirement Incentive Program (VRIP) with a revised number, i. e., a minimum of thirteen certificated employees retiring. Upon a motion by Mrs. Collins, seconded by Mr. Durst, the Board unanimously approved the personnel recommendations as presented.

        Part XIII - Board Concerns

    Dr. Teets recommended the approval of The Grant of Easement and Road Maintenance Agreement Between the Board of Education and the Trustees of the Bethel United Methodist Church which has been reviewed by the Board Attorney who finds the agreement legally sufficient. Upon a motion by Mr. Durst, seconded by Mrs. Rawe, the Board unanimously approved the agreement. Rev. Mark Hickman, pastor of the Bethel United Methodist Church was in attendance and thanked the Board for its time and approval.

        PART XIV - Instruction, continued

    Mrs. Jo Ann Vent, Supervisor of CTE/CE, noted that there were several winners from both high schools in the Maryland VICA competition, and that six finalists would be traveling to Kansas City this June for the national competition.

    Mrs. Vent presented the AGear Up@ grant proposal which is due for submission by April 30, 1999. She explained the purpose of the grant is to give students the skills, encouragement and preparation needed to pursue post-secondary education. The funding request will be $500 per seventh grade student which allows an entire grade level to be served over a five-year period. Planned activities include career development activities, college visitations, cultural enrichment activities, parental involvement activities, remediation and academic enrichment activities, and having college students act as mentors. The Board offered its support of the grant proposal.

    Dr. McCartney presented Board Policy 431.1 Enrollment Requirements and Administrative Procedure 431.10 Enrollment Requirements which were first presented at the March meeting. She noted the change in Board Policy 431.1, #5, from Aparents may refuse@ to Ais not required@ and the addition of ANo child will be enrolled in a Garrett County school without evidence of residency. If evidence of residency indicates that a child resides in a county other than Garrett county, Procedure 431.31 Non Resident Students will apply@ on the Administrative Procedure 431.10, C. Dr. Teets recommended the approval of the Board Policy 431.1. Upon a motion by Mrs. Sebold, seconded by Mrs. Collins, the Board unanimously approved the revision as presented.

        Part XV - Board Concerns, continued

    Mrs. Sebold asked for input from Board members regarding the proposed LSA dues increase, noting that she or Mr. Fink would be attending the next meeting at which time the issue of LSA needing additional funds would be on the table. By consensus, the Board moved to support using additional funds from the litigation fund, but to vote non-support of raising dues.

    Mrs. Sebold referred to the Minutes of February 11, 1997, wherein reference is made to Board Policy 175 Ethics Provisions, #2., regarding the composition of the Garrett County School System Ethics Panel. The Board at that time agreed to a revision suggested by Dr. Ryscavage. Since it had previously been approved, the Board advised the administration to prepare the policy in corrected version to be placed in the Policy and Procedure Manual.

    The Board suggested April 20, 1999, at 6:00 p.m. as a possible meeting date with the County Commissioners at the Courthouse, if they so desire.

    Mr. Fink presented the 1999-2000 School Calendar which was developed by the Calendar Committee. Dr. Teets recommended the approval of the calendar. Upon a motion by Mrs. Rawe, seconded by Mrs. Collins, the Board unanimously approved the 1999-2000 School Calendar.

    Miss Beeman shared the plaque and calculator she was awarded at the Regional Science Expo. Dr. Teets and the Board congratulated her for her first place win in the Environmental Science category.

        Part XVI - Information Items

a. MSDE Bulletin, Vol. 10, No. 4 (2/26/99)

b. MSDE Bulletin, Vol. 10, No. 5 (3/31/99)

c. Fine Arts Grant Award Information Update (4/13/99)

d. Success Night Schedule (May 19 and June 2, 1999)

e. Letter re: Schoolyard Habitat at Grantsville Elementary (3/19/99)

f. February 1999 Attendance Bulletin

g. Home & School Connection, April 1999

        Part XVII - Adjournment

    By consensus, the Board agreed to adjourn at 7:55 p.m.

________________________________________ _______________________________________
James M. Raley Wendell D. Teets
President Secretary/Treasurer
Approved:  May 11, 1999