SCHOOL BOARD MEETINGS 2016-17
NOTE: An attorney has been hired to sit right beside the school superintendent at all meetings, apparently to “coach” district leadership and Board, or perhaps to shield them from unwanted public comment? This is a recent development and explanations haven’t been given for this use of our taxpayer dollars!
Newly elected Board members, Lilia Rizo and Lupe Chavez were seated; Enrique Jimenez was chosen as President, Claudia Cazares as Clerk. Committee representation has been reduced to three: KCSBA, C&I, and LCAP Advisory/Budget. Outgoing Board members were recognized: Ricardo Verdugo (12 years) and Leticia Lopez (4 years).
Community member requested that the “new” Board turn over a new leaf for 2017 and resolve to be more honestly transparent and inclusive of stakeholders in decision-making, as required by LCAP/ESSA.
Board members made brief comments regarding recent CSBA annual conference they attended in San Francisco. Superintendent wants to hold a Board “training” session here in near future also.
Reports and News: Upcoming Winter programs at schools, AHS science room ribbon-cutting soon, student activities (with video)
Action Items: Board approved financial “Interim” report, updated facility “Master Plan”, contract with School Services of CA, agreement with enVision Consulting for preparation of SARCs, review of College & Career Readiness Plan, and adoption of new/revised Board Policies (CSBA).
Discussion: The unusual expenditure of $45,000.00 for gift cards was discussed. An actual “Report” documenting distribution of cards to date was not forthcoming, nor were plans made to “adopt rules and regulations” regarding their use, as required by Ed Code and local Policy. Ms. Monohon distributed information documenting correspondence she had with the district personnel concerning this matter while she was serving on the Board.
A Public Hearing was held regarding CSEA and WKCTA Openers for 2016-17. Mr. Silva expressed concerns regarding handling of LCFF funds by district, and Mr. Brewer commented on discrepancies in teacher salaries.
Community member provided a handout on civic engagement and expressed concern about the lack of transparency due to not identifying expenditures with short descriptions on district warrants reports.
Reports and Presentations: Student reports, Prevention Interventions Services report by Perla Maldonado and Erica Mendez, warrant process report by attorney Edwards and CBO Cutillo, WKCTA request for the district to be transparent with LCFF and bond funds.
Staff/Board Communicatons: Board members commented on the RSMS Career Day, KCES carnival, Safe Route to School work, AHS construction, and use of soccer fields by RAP. Ms. Cutillo commented on food program changes at KC, Mr.Horn reported Nov-Dec conferences and professional development.
Supt. East commented on election results and Measure S, and mentioned AES gallery night, AHS culinary program, RSMS family literacy night and Career Day. He would like to start a Spanish dual immersion program for kindergarten classes, but did not report any parent input. He announced and congratulated RSUSD Excellence in Education winners: Ana Rosas (teacher), Angie Bueno (school employee), and Fred Guerrero (administrator). East and a few other people attended the CCEE/LCAP training in Fresno.
Action Items: Board approved an agreement with Self-Help Enterprises to install water bottle filling stations at school sites. (A concern was expressed about maintaining sanitation at outdoor facilities.) The Board approved using Teach For America teacher candidates (2016-2020) in our schools. The Board approved first reading of proposed new/revised policies from CSBA.
Discussion Items: Mr. Ruiz reported on Student Equity regarding college classes offered at AHS. Different students have different options, opportunities, and services. Question: Is this “equity?” Dr. East spoke about health insurance company options being explored
Newly elected Student Board Member, Yesenia Solis, was given the Oath of Office and seated.
Public Comment: Community member provided samples of meeting agendas and warrant registers from other school districts, and asked the RSUSD board to be more transparent with information provided to stakeholders.
Presentations: Students from AHS and RSMS gave reports of student activities. Ken Reynolds and Michael Cannon gave a power point presentation on the RSUSD Facility Master Plan update.
Staff/Board Communications were by written report only due to “time constraints” (?) C&I report listed conferences and professional development for October. Superintendent report commented on staff travel and conference expenditures, KC track possibilities, LCAP info meetings provided through CCEE, and parent tech classes (in cooperation with City of Avenal).
Action Items: Board adopted a College & Career Access partnership agreement with West Hills College. They also approved an agreement with Caves & Associates (attorney) for employer-employee relations. Also approved was a $12,000 contract with Susan Elizabeth (Capacity Builders Inc) to help revise the district’s Wellness policy BP 5030. A Special Reserve Fund ($500,000.00) was opened for “Postemployment Benefits.” A bid was approved and contract awarded to Revolution Foods for the Child and Adult Care Food Program. Receipt of CSEA bargaining openers was approved. July 2016 new/revised Board Policies (CSBA) were adopted.
All discussion items were tabled due to two board members being absent from this meeting.
Meeting was held in the Kettleman City Elementary School library. Public Comment by parent/teacher concerning AHS student equity and district warrant expenses. Hanford Warrant Report sample was shared.
Students gave reports on their activities. Tina Jimenez (nurse) presented an overview of all district health services provided, and mentioned new CA law regarding required sex ed in grades 7-12.
Board/Staff Communications: Board members commented on Back to School Nights, Safe Routes to School, new Buccaneer painted on AHS auditorium, and upcoming Avenal Day of the Family. Ms. Lopez responded to public comment and said she would like the district to provide an overview of teacher trainings and warrant expenditures as an attempt to be more transparent.
Business office reported on food services, and high school plumbing problems. Curriculum department reported on teacher training for new materials adoption, and said that SES will be provided after school with individual plans for students (October-May). Mr. Horn reviewed SBAC scores. Supt East reported on clean water issues, and talked about Measure S.
Action Items: Resolutions concerning sufficiency of instructional materials, Bridge Financing for State Building Funds application, Gann Limit, and Voluntary Retirement Saving Plans were passed. Unaudited Actuals Financial Report was approved, as was the 1st reading of the College & Career Access Partnership Agreement with West Hills College. Board approved LEA 2015-16 End-of-Year Evidence of Progress report, and the 1st reading of July 2016 Board Policies (CSBA).
Discussion items: Kettleman City Elementary desire for all-weather track and for gym air conditioning; changing District logo design; community engagement activities; and KCOE approval of district LCAP.
Board President and Clerk were both absent, so Member Jimenez chaired meeting.
Public Comment: Pastor Ted Woelk expressed concerns regarding transgender law and stated that he would like RSUSD schools to include the transgender policy in student handbooks.
Presentations: Suzanne Speck from School Services of CA gave a report on her RSUSD study of employee compensation, employee selection and hiring procedures, and the LCAP engagement process. She briefly discussed her findings and recommendations. She emphasized that she was not reporting on “quality.”
Board/Staff Communications: Board members welcomed everyone back to school and recognized the hard work of beginning a new school year. Business office reported on new Gmail and AT&T systems, and plans for a supper food program. Curriculum department reported on summer school programs. Superintendent East said we have three teachers from Teach for America; and talked about clean water issues. He mentioned Quay Valley proposals, Measure S bond election, Open House dates, and invited people to go see the RSMS gym renovations.
Single Plans for Student Achievement (SPSAs) were removed from the agenda – were not revised for approval.
Action Items: Board approved the JSO agreement, the Kings View Counseling Services agreement, and Certification of Kings Co Special Ed Local Planning Agency Plan. They passed a Resolution appointing Estela Jimenez as representative to AB 86/AB 104 Adult Ed Consortium, and adopted the May/June CSBA recommended new/revised Board Policies.
Discussion: Ms. Cutillo said she is contacting various health insurance companies to meet with CSES/CTA representatives and discuss benefits options.