ESCAMBIA COUNTY, FLORIDA
MINUTES, AUGUST 16, 2002
The School Board of Escambia County, Florida, convened in Workshop Meeting at 9:00 a.m., in the Board Room, at the Dr. Vernon McDaniel (Administration) Building, 215 West Garden Street, Pensacola, Florida, with the following present:
Chairman: Dr. John DeWitt Vice Chairman: Ms. Linda Finkelstein
Board Members: Mr. Gary L. Bergosh
Mrs. Cary Stidham
Dr. Elmer Jenkins
School Board Attorney: Mr. Francisco M. Negron, Jr.
Superintendent of Schools: Mr. Jim Paul
I. CALL TO ORDER
Dr. DeWitt called the workshop to order at 9:02 a.m.
A. Open Discussion
1. Recommendations for Agenda Deadlines
Dr. DeWitt made the following recommendations in an effort to ensure that adequate time was available for complete review of all agenda materials:
When Board Workshops are on Friday (before a Regular Meeting on Tuesday), no materials will be accepted after noon on the following Monday.
When Board Workshops are on Monday (before a Regular Meeting on Tuesday), no materials will be accepted after noon on Tuesday, the day of the Regular Board Meeting.
For Special Meetings, no materials will be accepted after noon the day before the scheduled Special Meeting.
Failure to adhere to the above described deadline schedule will result in items being pulled from the agenda.*
(*If special/emergency circumstances arise that will not allow for timely distribution of materials, a memorandum of explanation should accompany late materials for Board consideration.)
Mr. Negron stated that if the Board intended for staff to follow specific guidelines (as outlined in the recommendations), then those guidelines would constitute a rule and the Board would need to follow the proper rule-making process (i.e., advertisement, public hearing, adoption). Dr. Jenkins suggested that the recommendations be informally followed for a few months to see how it comes out, before making it a rule. The Superintendent stated that these recommendations were something that both the administration and the Board could agree on, however, he was not sure that a rule would be necessary. Mrs. Stidham and Dr. DeWitt agreed that the recommendations should also apply to Board Members. The Board and Superintendent collectively agreed that these recommendations be followed, beginning with the current month.
(NOTE: The following discussion refers to the Petree facility, which previously housed the Petree Pre-K program. As a result of prior Board action (from the March 4, 2002 Special Meeting) to move the Petree Pre-K program to an existing K-5 site, the facility was currently vacant.) Ms. Finkelstein noted that the Board had received a request (by way of letter to the Superintendent) from ARC Gateway regarding use of the Petree facility to provide direct early childhood services for children with disabilities. She stated that ARC Gateway would like to lease the facility on a long-term basis (minimum of five years), at a token amount, in exchange for their agreement to provide maintenance, upkeep, occupancy and operational expenses. Upon inquiry by Ms. Finkelstein, Dr. DeWitt stated that he had previously requested an appraisal of the facility, yet had not received that information. The Superintendent stated that while he liked the idea of leasing the facility to ARC Gateway, he would need to take a closer look at the issue. He noted that he would provide the Board with an appraisal of the Petree facility.
Dr. DeWitt noted that by law, the Superintendent and the Board are each entitled to appoint a representative to the Pre-K Coalition. He noted that Mr. Wayne Odom, Director of Title I, currently represented the Board, but works for the Superintendent, and Mrs. Barbara Linker, Assistant Superintendent for Finance and Business Affairs, currently represented the Superintendent. He suggested that the Board consider appointing him (Dr. DeWitt) as their representative and the Superintendent consider appointing Mr. Odom as his (the Superintendents) representative, in an effort to remove Mr. Odom from any conflict. Dr. DeWitt noted that he would add an item to the August 20, 2002 Regular Meeting agenda, regarding this issue.
Personnel Planning Document
Dr. DeWitt stated that he had requested a copy of the Personnel Planning Document (PPD) that was approved at the April 26, 2002 Special Meeting. He explained that it was necessary that the Board and the Recording Secretary receive a copy of the approved PPD, as it would need to be filed as the official record. The Superintendent stated that he would provide the requested document to the Board and Recording Secretary.
One-Half Cent Sales Tax Extension
(NOTE: The following discussion refers to a special referendum election, which will be held on September 10, 2002 regarding the One-Half Cent Sales Tax Extension.) The Superintendent gave a brief update on the fund raising and promotion campaign for the extension of the One-Half Cent Sales Tax. He stated that enough money was collected to run the campaign, and noted several promotion efforts such as mail-outs, billboards, and television and radio spots.
Beggs Alternative Education Center (former A.A. Dixon Elementary School facility)
(NOTE: The following discussion refers to prior Board action (from the July 16, 2002 Regular Meeting), to relocate the Beggs Programs to the A.A. Dixon Elementary School facility for the 2002-2003 school year.) Mr. Paul Fetsko, Assistant Superintendent for Curriculum and Instruction, advised that a committee would consider a name for the Beggs Alternative Education Center (former A.A. Dixon Elementary School facility), that would respect the history of the program and the surrounding community. He stated that the committee would consult with those individuals associated with the Beggs and Dixon families, to ensure that their interests and desires were a part of the naming of that facility.
II. COMMENTS FROM SUPERINTENDENT
The Superintendent listed the additions, deletions, amendments and corrections to the agenda.
III. APPROVAL OF MINUTES
Minutes for all July meetings will be presented for Board approval.
IV. COMMITTEE/DEPARTMENTAL REPORTS
1. Report from Mike Burns, Legislative Consultant to the School Board
Due to the absence of Mr. Burns, no report on legislative issues was given.
2. Update on eAgenda Request for Information (RFI)
(NOTE: This issue was previously discussed at the June 18, 2002 Regular Meeting.) Mr. John Dombroskie, Senior Purchasing Agent, reviewed information provided to the Board regarding several solutions that were offered in response to the eAgenda Request for Information (RFI). He noted that a team [members from Purchasing, Instructional Technology and Management Information Systems (MIS)] had reviewed those solutions regarding cost effectiveness; training needed to implement the solution; and the impact on technical staff. He advised that the team had evaluated software only, noting that hardware requirements were rather static. After review by the team, the list of solutions was narrowed down to four software options, which varied in price from about $4,000 to over $150,000. He noted that all of the solutions offered electronic assembly and visibility of the agenda; protection of the document from unauthorized changes; the ability to attach notes to the document; and all were web-based. He explained that the team could not justify eAgenda as a cost savings, but rather as a management tool that enhances the productivity of staff. He stated that other school districts that had implemented eAgenda, did so because they thought it was an efficient way to keep the public abreast of the agenda and to keep them technologically advanced. He noted however, that none of those school districts had implemented eAgenda as a cost savings. The team suggested that the Superintendent form a group [that should include a Board Member and several members of staff that prepare the agenda in addition to the current members from Purchasing, Instructional Technology and Management Information Systems (MIS)] to further evaluate the options. Mrs. Stidham and Ms. Finkelstein stated that they were not ready to make a decision at this point. They believed that there was more information that could be provided regarding this issue. Dr. DeWitt stated that he would add this item to the August 20, 2002 Regular Meeting agenda under Items from the Board.
Due to time constraints, the following items were moved forward on the agenda:
Unauthorized Purchase of Books (Item V.D.16)
A representative of Wedgewood Middle School, stated that this item was to request authorization to issue purchase order and pay for the unauthorized purchase of Combo Dictionaries.
Unauthorized Purchase of Books (Item V.D.17)
Mr. Jeff Garthwaite, Principal of Warrington Middle School, stated that this item was to request authorization to issue purchase order and pay for the unauthorized purchase of School Agendas.
Unauthorized Purchase of Books (Item V.D.18)
Mr. Jeff Pomeroy, Principal of Workman Middle School, stated that this item was to request authorization to issue purchase order and pay for the unauthorized purchase of School Agendas.
V. CONSENT AGENDA
A. Curriculum and Instruction
1. Cooperative Agreement between the Escambia Westgate School/School Board of Escambia County, Florida, and United Cerebral Palsy of Northwest Florida, Inc.
Ms. Finkelstein noted that a statement included in the agreement read the Contracting Agency agrees to operate the program (no less than 220 days per year) from dismissal of school up to 6:00 p.m. or until the last student leaves during the school year; and from 7:00 a.m. up to 6:00 p.m. or until the last student leaves during the summer. She noted that the agreement would end on June 30, 2003 and questioned whether that particular statement should state the date certain (June 30, 2003), rather than until the last student leaves during the summer. Mr. Paul Fetsko, Assistant Superintendent for Curriculum and Instruction, stated that 220 days covers it through the summer - would have to have a new contract that begins July 1, 2003.
3. Facility Availability Agreement between Experior Assessment, LLC, and the School Board of Escambia County, Florida, and the George Stone Area Vocational Technical Center
Although not questioning this particular item, Ms. Finkelstein asked if there was a difference between the terms, contract and agreement. Mr. Negron advised that both terms were inter-changeable.
4. Contract between the School Board of Escambia County, Florida and the Community Drug and Alcohol Council
Ms. Finkelstein noted that the executive summary stated 1175 hours of technical assistance for Too Good For Drugs II Program, however, page 1 of 8 in the actual agreement only stated 1600 hours. Mr. Charles Thomas, Director of Alternative Education, explained that further portions of the agreement include additional hours which total to 1775 (hours). Ms. Finkelstein referred to page 4 of 8 which included the statement provide peer mediation at one charter school, but did not distinguish between a charter middle school or charter high school. Mr. Thomas stated that page 3 of 8 referred to one charter school, and noted that he did not believe it was necessary for that to be stated on page 4 of 8. Upon inquiry by Dr. DeWitt, Mr. Thomas, stated that the District was required to provide charter schools the opportunity to participate in these services. Mr. Thomas noted that these services were already being provided in some schools and that this item was simply a request to include additional schools.
5. Professional Agreement between the School Board of Escambia County, Florida and Mary Elizabeth Morton
Dr. DeWitt noted that the executive summary indicated a funding request of $30,000 but noted that the figures within the agreement totaled to $32,000. Mr. Thomas explained that $30,000 is the contract that we are establishing with this person and $2,000 will be provided in materials and supplies for her to do the program. Upon inquiry by Dr. DeWitt, Mr. Thomas explained that an evaluation of the program would be done through pre/post surveys, attendance and internet-site hits.
6. 2002-2003 School Improvement Plans and 2001-2002 End of Year Reports
(NOTE: The following discussion refers to the 2002-2003 School Improvement Plan for Byrneville Elementary School.) Ms. Finkelstein referred to a letter from Byrneville Elementary School (included in the supporting documentation for this item), which stated that the Board of Directors and the principal would approve Byrnevilles School Improvement Plan on its completion and would make a copy available to the Superintendent and Board. She questioned wouldnt we (the Board) be the ones approving that School Improvement Plan. Mrs. Sheree Cagle, Director of Comprehensive Planning, stated the principal and Board of Directors of Byrneville Elementary School felt like it was entirely up to them to approve their School Improvement Plan. However, after a conversation between the principal and Mr. Charles Thomas, Director of Alternative Education, the principal had agreed that the Plan would come before the Board for approval. Mr. Thomas reminded the Board that one of the provisions of charter schools is freedom from regulation and policy - they are exempt from, and do not have to comply with School Board policy if they choose not to do so.
(NOTE: The following discussion refers to the 2001-2002 End of Year Report for Blue Angel Elementary School.) Ms. Finkelstein referred to a letter from Blue Angels Elementary School (included in the supporting documentation for this item) which stated Goal 2 is not complete due to circumstances beyond our control. We have not yet received our survey results from Evaluation Services and will complete the report as soon as those survey results are available. Mrs. Cagle stated that no school had received that information (survey results) and explained that until the information was received from the State, Blue Angels Elementary School could not determine whether they had adequately met their Goal 2. She noted that they had however, met enough of their goals already, to make adequate progress but they just want to be perfect.
9. Mentoring Program
Ms. Finkelstein noted that the budget narrative within the supporting documentation referred to a subcontract to the University of West Florida College of Professional Studies. In answer to Ms. Finkelsteins question, Mrs. Sheree Cagle, Director of Comprehensive Planning, stated that there would be a contract, once the grant was approved. Ms. Finkelstein noted that page 4 referred to an Appendix A and Appendix B, however, neither was included in the supporting documentation. Mrs. Sheree Cagle, Director of Comprehensive Planning, stated that she would provide that information prior to the August 20, 2002 Regular Meeting.
11. 2002/2003 Full Service School Funding Mutual Cooperative Agreement between the Florida Department of Health Escambia County Health Department and the School District of Escambia County, Florida
Ms. Finkelstein noted that the term of the agreement was July 1, 2002 through June 30, 2003 and questioned why this item was being presented on the August (Regular Meeting) agenda, for approval. Ms. Karen Thoennes, Coordinator of Health Services, explained that in the past, the Superintendent had just signed off on this item, however, Mr. Negron had advised that this item should be presented for Board approval.
16. Comprehensive School Reform Grant for Jacqueline Harris Pyramid School of Learning
Upon inquiry by Ms. Finkelstein, Mr. Wayne Odom, Director of Title I, stated that O.J. Semmes was the only school to be awarded this grant initially. He explained that because additional funding had become available, Jacqueline Harris Pyramid School of Learning (JHPSL) would be added.
Although not an agenda item, the following issue was discussed:
Comprehensive School Reform (CSR) Grant for Brentwood Elementary
Upon inquiry by Dr. DeWitt, Mr. Wayne Odom, Director of Title I, confirmed that Brentwood Elementary School had in fact, turned down a Comprehensive School Reform (CSR) Grant to implement MicroSociety. He explained that the CSR grant (which was written by the previous administration at that school) would have been integrated with the schools magnet grant, which he stated was a fairly ambitious and complicated thing to do. He stated that with the grant coming not when they first proposed it, but rather at the beginning of a second year, the new administration and the faculty believed that they could not effectively integrate the demands of the two (CSR and magnet grants). In response to concerns expressed, Mr. Odom noted that the administration and faculty (of Brentwood Elementary School) believed that good stewardship of public funds would impel them to not accept it (the CSR grant).
19. Medicaid Direct Service Claiming
(NOTE: The following statements refer to an item approved at the July 16, 2002 Regular Meeting regarding Medicaid Administrative Claiming Services.) Dr. DeWitt questioned how this item related to the Medicaid Administrative Claiming Services that was previously approved by the Board. Ms. Sandra Ward explained that the contract approved at the July 16, 2002 Regular Meeting, was for administrative claiming and this particular item was for direct service claiming. She noted that funds generated by administrative claiming would be placed in the district general revenue fund and those generated by direct service claiming, would be returned back to the school from which they were processed.
20. Contract between the School Board of Escambia County, Florida, and Hurricane Island Outward Bound School
Ms. Finkelstein noted page 2 of 7 refers to an Attachment A however, whatever what was attached was not marked as such. She also noted that on page 4 of 7 the signature block stated School District and questioned whether that should be changed to School Board. Mr. Negron believed that it was clear who the parties are, just an issue of form over function.
Due to time constraints the following item was moved forward on the agenda:
Policy for Acceptable Materials for Use in School Public Performances (Draft Proposal) [Item VII.B.5]
(NOTE: This issue was previously discussed at the May 21, 2002 Regular Meeting.) Ms. Sandra Durr, Fine Arts Specialist, stated that a committee representing District and school administrators, theatre instructors and students, had developed a draft proposal of a Policy for Acceptable Materials for Use in School Public Performances. She noted that after information was received from the Board regarding any recommendations, revisions or corrections to the draft proposal, the committee would review the document once more before submitting a final proposal to the Superintendent.
Although not an agenda item, the following issues were discussed:
Secretarial Assistance for the Coordinator EEOC
In response to concerns expressed by Dr. Jenkins, the Superintendent stated that whatever secretarial support was needed to carry out the duties of that position (Coordinator EEOC), would be provided.
Upon inquiry by Dr. DeWitt, Dr. Alan Scott, Director of Secondary Education and Dr. Deborah Malishan, Director of Elementary Education, reviewed the most current information regarding student enrollment figures. Mr. Paul Fetsko, Assistant Superintendent for Curriculum and Instruction, stated that he would provide the Board with updated information regarding this issue, as it became available.
6. Budget Amendments:
c) Resolution 11: Capital Projects Fund
In response to concerns expressed by Mrs. Stidham, Mr. Ron Peacock, Director of Facilities Planning, stated that he would provide the Board with a list of projects intended to be completed by Facilities Plannings in-house construction crews, during the 2002-2003 fiscal year.
Although not an agenda item, the following issue was discussed:
Mr. Negron stated that the Attorney General basically concurred with my opinion, which was that One-Half Cent Sales Tax revenues cannot flow to property that is not owned by the district. He advised that Pensacola Beach Charter School would be entitled to the regular capital outlay dollars that charter schools are entitled to, but they would not be entitled to the One-Half Cent Sales Tax dollars. Dr. DeWitt questioned how the Attorney Generals opinion would relate to the law that states that you are supposed to spend it (One-Half Cent Sales Tax funds) on what you advertised it for. Mr. Negron explained that basically you promised that you would use this (One-Half Cent Sales Tax funds) to fund school projects on property that you own and that is not the case any longer. He also noted for the record, that he had forwarded copies of the letter from the Attorney General to the attorneys representing Pensacola Beach Elementary School.
Due to time constraints, the following item was moved forward on the agenda:
Inventory Adjustment Reports (Item V.G.2)
Mr. Steve Marcanio, Principal of Brown-Barge Middle School, addressed the Board regarding the schools Disposition of Missing (Capitalized) Inventory Assets.
C. Human Resources Services
FROM TO DATE
Forrester, Ruth Ernest Ward Visiting Teacher 07/26/02
Dr. DeWitt noted that this administrative transfer by the Superintendent was a reassignment of a principal to a visiting teacher position. Upon inquiry by Dr. DeWitt, the Superintendent stated that this individual would continue on as a principal as soon as there was an opportunity to do so.
19. Change Notice #2 to Purchase Order #226248 (GE Capital Solutions)
Dr. DeWitt noted that this was a request to authorize a change notice to increase the original contract amount, as the current volume of repairs had exceeded original estimates. He stated that he would contact Mr. Keith Lech, Director of Systems Support, regarding his question as to whether these administrative computers were worth that amount of money ($9,059.00) to repair.
43. Annual Agreement: EduTest On-Line Student Testing
Dr. DeWitt noted that there was no contract included in the supporting documentation for this item. Mr. John Dombroskie, Senior Purchasing Agent, stated that the contract had been received, however there were many things that needed to be changed. He explained that in an effort to speed up delivery of the EduTest On-Line Testing, the vendor had agreed that the purchase order would suffice as a contract until the legalities of the contract were worked out. Dr. DeWitt questioned whether a performance evaluation component would be included in this particular contract, as it had been with other software. Mr. Dombroskie believed that it would be difficult to require a performance criteria in the contract, when basically the onus is on our teachers to take that information and actually do something with it. Dr. DeWitt stated that he would not support approval of this item with the absence of the contract.
No discussion was held.
F. Student Transfers
No items were submitted.
G. Internal Auditing
No discussion was held.
VI. UNFINISHED BUSINESS
No items were submitted.
VII. NEW BUSINESS
A. Proposed Additions of Revisions to School District Rules
a. Permission to Advertise
2. Notice of Intent to Advertise Amendment to School District Rule 6Gx17-7.09 Pupil Progression Plan
(NOTE: The following discussion refers to a section in the Pupil Progression Plan regarding Grade Placement and Transfer of Credits.) Mrs. Stidham noted that several parents had expressed concerns regarding the Pupil Progression Plan, specifically the issue of transfer of credits from a private high school. She referred to page 17 of the Plan, which stated high school programs which are not regionally accredited transfer credits shall be accepted subject to a validation process conducted by the Director of Secondary Education and the school principal. She noted that the statement was not clear as to exactly how we are going to handle the transfer of credits and believed that the validation process should be spelled out. Dr. Scott explained that the validation process consisted of validation of credits or final examinations. He stated that he would amend that item to address Mrs. Stidhams concern.
(NOTE: The following discussion refers to a section in the Pupil Progression Plan regarding Dual Enrollment.) Upon inquiry by Dr. DeWitt, Dr. Scott stated that the Districts current articulation agreement with Pensacola Junior College would expire in October 2002. He noted that due to many changes in the Florida School Code with regard to dual enrollment, a new articulation agreement was being developed and would be presented to the Board for approval in October 2002. In answer to Dr. DeWitts question, Dr. Scott stated that to his knowledge, the District had never had an articulation agreement with the University of West Florida. He noted however, that he would meet with representatives of UWF to develop an articulation agreement similar to the one with Pensacola Junior College. At the request of several Board Members, Dr. Scott stated that he would provide the Board with a draft of the articulation agreement.
B. Items from the Board
1. Discussion of Pre-K Issues John DeWitt
This item was discussed earlier in the meeting.
2. Discussion of Use of the Petree Facility Linda Finkelstein
This item was discussed earlier in the meeting.
C. Items from the Superintendent
5. Policy for Acceptable Materials for Use in School Public Performances (Draft Proposal)
This item was discussed earlier in the meeting.
D. Items from the General Counsel
No items were submitted.
There being no further business, the Regular Workshop adjourned at 3:55 p.m.