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State College Area School District

Our Mission: To prepare students for lifelong success through excellence in education

10/23/06 Board Meeting

October 23, 2006
3rd FLOOR, ROOM 304

Susan Werner, board president, called the regular meeting to order at 7:30 pm. Ms. Werner announced that the Board held an executive session prior to the meeting on litigation and personnel issues.

Board members present: Elizabeth Dutton, Lou Ann Evans, Robert Hendrickson, David Hutchinson, Janet McCracken, Donna Queeney, Gowen Roper, Susan Werner
Board members absent: Robert Ascah
Board secretary: Mary Jenn Dorman
Solicitor: Scott Etter
Superintendent: Patricia Best
District Personnel: Cameron Bausch, Randy Brown, Craig Butler, Julia Gold, Dennis Guth, Debra Latta, Tim Linden, Kenneth Mawritz, Ed Poprik, Greg Somers, Wilda Stanfield, Holli Jo Warner, Dennis Younkin
Guests: Cindy Carpenter, Tony Ciccarelli, Kathy DiMuccio, Alex Donohue, Carolyn Dubois, Bonna Elfant, Joe Fedeli, Penni Fishbaine, Steve Hackman, Wilber Hantel, Cindy Harding, W.B. Ingram, Larry Kerry, Tom King, Patty Kleban, Rick Madore, Mary Marino, Ann McGlaughlin, Ron McGlaughlin, Daren Narber, Rich O'Donald, Chris O'Reilly, David Paterno, Dena Pauling, Catherine Rudy, Stephanie Schmidt, Toby Short, Chris Small, Marybeth Snell, Ignacio Sofo, Paul Suhey, Laura Swinyer, Eric Topp, Patricia Wild


Student Government Officers, Alex Donohue, Ignacio Sofo, Dan and Maria had provided a Revised Constitution for board members prior to the meeting. The officers reviewed the changes made. They changed the format for productivity, now more organized and functional, equal for all classes 9-12, and moved voting power to underclassmen for all voices to be heard.
For students interested in serving on Student Government, the rules are more clear for those running for a position. Currently, Student Government Representatives report to students in Social Studies class, but a new system going into place using a committee base will reach the entire student body. A copy of the New Constitution is part of the official minutes and will be
brought back in a month or so for approval.

The Student Government will hold Renovation 06 Forums to give students the opportunity to ask real questions and have real answers given. Representatives of CCP (Citizens for Constructive Progress), SHV (State High Vision), David Paterno Group, and SCASD Board of Directors will have an opportunity to share viewpoints.

With safety and violence issues being discussed and reported in the news, Patricia Best gave an update to the Board of district approaches to situations and processes in place. The Administration has very active communication with the police department and Chief King. We have developed activities for students on prevention and intervention, risk reduction, and crisis response. The district has a detailed document of responses that is reviewed yearly, and there is a traumatic events team in each building.
Ed Poprik reported further on the emergency plans. The district emergency operations plan is coordinated and updated yearly. The emergency plan is reviewed with administrators yearly prior to the beginning of the school year. Security audits are done on all buildings to secure safety and security.

Police Chief Tom King spoke about the collaborative work between the department and the district buildings. The district now has 3 SROs and the department works with the district in life skills, the DARE Program, and on CAC for School Safety. This school district and police department have a strong working relationship and a very proactive approach.

Susan Werner asked if there were audience members wanting to address the board on an item not on the agenda. Each person would have a 3 minute limit. The board was addressed by:
Patty Kleban on School Safety and School Security, training and instruction the students have had, bus safety, and parents/adults aware - what about students? Craig Butler, High School Principal, and Patricia Best responded to concerns.
Toby Short reported that the PTO has an e-mail emergency alert system.
Rick Madore had asked about measuring success of the high school program but did not receive a response from all of the board members. Ms. Werner responded that not all board members respond to every question and that her response does not always represent the opinion of all.
Holli Jo Warner, State College Area Education Association President, reported that she found no language in the School Code referring to teachers making public comments.

Board members were presented with a listing of travel requests, with an addendum, for staff members to attend meetings or conferences for approval.
The Report on Investments as of September 30, 2006, the Treasurer's Cash Report as of September 30, 2006, the Budget Status Report, the Revenue Report, and the Student Activities Fund Report were presented to the board for approval. A copy of the reports is part of the official minutes.
Recommended the 2005-2006 budget be amended as a result of a reconciliation of the grant revenue awards in the amount of -$34,553.62. A copy of the Budget Amendment is part of the official minutes.

Detailed budget transfers for Fund 10 were presented to the board for approval. A copy of the listing is part of the official minutes.
Approval of Booster Organization status for the 2006-2007 school year for the State College Girls' Volleyball Booster Club.
Minutes from September 13, 2006 Special Board Meeting and October 9, 2006 Board Meeting were presented for approval.
Dr. Hendrickson moved, Ms. Evans seconded to approve the travel requests with addendum, the Financial Reports ending September 30, 2006, the budget amendment, the budget transfers, Athletic Booster Club status, and the Meeting Minutes for
September 13 and October 9, 2006. All board members present voted aye on a roll call vote. (Mr. Ascah was absent.)

Dennis Guth presented the Personnel Report for approval. A copy of the Personnel Report is part of the official minutes.
Jennifer Lusch, Elementary Teacher in the Radio Park School, resigns November 28, 2006.

Mary California recommended to position as 1.0 Predictable Term Substitute Elementary Teacher in the Park Forest Elementary School from October 2, 2006 through January 15, 2007 only at a salary of $49,047 prorated to $17,295.38.
Matthew Ammerman recommended to position as 1.0 Predictable Term Substitute 6th Grade Teacher in the Park Forest Middle School from October 19, 2006 through the 1st semester of the 2006-07 school year only at a salary of $38,192 prorated to $11,658.58.

Extra Duty/Extra Pay
Dianne McMurtry resigned as Math Club Advisor effective October 16, 2006.
Recommended Thomas Jeffries III as 9th Grade Maroon Boys' Basketball Head Coach at a salary of $3,543.65.
Recommended Ronald Pifer as Wrestling Assistant Coach at a salary of $3,865.80.

Support Personnel (Non-Certificated)
Secretarial/Clerical - Hired
Lisa Mensinger at $10.42/hour
Secretarial/Clerical - Terminated
Susan Sheridan (retired 10/06)
Paraprofessional - Hired
Alaina Impellitteri, Susan Gong, Heike Rudnik at $8.83/hour
Deborah Baier at $8.17/hour
Pamela Scott at $10.01/hour and $9.26/hour
Paraprofessional - Terminated
Michele Smoyer
Bus Drivers - Terminated
C. John Krebs (retirement 12/06)

Ms. Dutton moved, Dr. McCracken seconded to approve the personnel report as presented. All board members present voted aye on a roll call vote. (Mr. Ascah was absent.)

Patricia Best spent time at the high school for the Phase 1 - Advisory Concept for the Small Schools Initiative and was very pleaseed to share this report given by Craig Butler, Ignacio Sofo, Julia Gold, Deb Latta and Catherine Rudy.
Craig Butler reviewed the power point presentation which included the mission statement for the Small Schools Initiative, the goals for the advisory program, decisions that have been made, and advisors. A copy of the power point is part of the official minutes. Student Ignacio Sofo is a representative for student government and also on the advisory council. The advisory council and student government meet once/week. All faculty are involved and this has been a total school effort. At this time, no nurses or technology faculty have been assigned groups.

Teacher Julia Gold explained her excitement in being part of this committee and explained that all faculty do this every day, just has not been called advisory. Catherine Rudy, consultant, was introduced. Ms. Rudy was highly recommended. She was
a business/industry consultant and is now in education. Catherine spoke on creating schools where teachers want to teach and students want to learn. The advisory format goes beyond the learning, and offers social/emotional support with one adult. This district has looked at the work that needs done and has allowed time for people to feel comfortable in this roll. Ms. Rudy
supplied a handout which is part of the official minutes.

The board and panel of presenters were addressed by: Patty Kleban, Ann McGlaughlin, and Marybeth Snell. Topics of concern: The word advisor and definition, topics and value system at home, more guidance counselors (2/class), what motivated the district to do this, the elaborate structure, age grouping, teachers not counselors, amount of money investing in this, implementing at the time of construction, and choose a building plan to facilitate goals. Mr. Butler and Ms. Rudy did respond to many of the concerns.

Randy Brown reviewed the summary of changes to be included in the 2007 Rules and Regulations for the Earned Income Tax. In cooperation with the Centre Region Tax Collectors, Mr. Brown reviewed the proposed amendments to the 2005 and 2006 Earned Income Tax Rules and Regulations. The district solicitor has reviewed the information. This item will be on the agenda for the second meeting in November for action. A copy of the 2007 EIT Rules and Regulations and the 2005/2006 EIT Amendments is part of the official minutes.

Carolyn Dubois, Daren Narber and Rich O'Donald joined Ed Poprik for the presentation on Memorial Field. Mr. Narber gave a history of Memorial Field and the upgrades done through the years. A team approach, with various groups, was used to look at the existing field. Mr. Narber reviewed a total of six (6) options; 1-4 addressing increased seating capacity to 6,000, restrooms, concession stand, design, phasing process and timelines. Options 5 and 6 were temporary renovation alternatives for the home side that could be completed for the start of the 2007 season. The CAC for Facilities is also reviewing the options report for presenting a recommendation.

Board members discussed the options, the time frame and how soon a decision needs made, the phasing steps for the options, and Option 3 Design - process with the Borough for using part of the street. No members of the audience addressed the board on this item.

Ed Poprik reviewed information regarding cost, cost estimates and the new targeted project cost for the High School North only of $97.6 million. He reviewed the number for the 60% cost estimate and spoke on potential changes and cost reduction measures to bring cost in line.

Scope refinement issues will not require board action but 4 issues that will require board action are:
M-01 and M-02 removing air conditioning from 2 tertiary gyms
B-34 convert one team room to storage
B-27 reduce the auditorium size to 900 seats
Steve Hackman reported on the CAC recommendation for the auditorium. It is the largest issue and the committee had a split vote of 4-3 for the reduction. However, the administration at the high school has recommended that the size of the auditorium remain the same. After further discussion, board members thought the auditorium should remain the same size. This issue will appear as an action item on the next meeting agenda.

Sue Werner thanked Steve Hackman for all the time the CAC has spent with Kimball architects and the terrific job all have done. A copy of the cost update, the issues that specifically require board action, a listing of total possible changes for cost reduction, and the High School Administrative Team recommendation for the auditorium are part of the official minutes.

Susan Werner announced that 30 minutes would be allotted for public comment with each person having a 3-minute limit. The board was addressed by: David Paterno, Marybeth Snell, Penny Fishbaine, Chris Small, Cindy Carpenter, Wilbur Hantel, and Eric Topp. Topics and concerns were: cost savings, reducing size of hallways, CAC concerns for going on with the plan, plans for South building, bleachers at Memorial Field, work needs done on other fields, need to reevaluate the whole picture, needs not wants, air conditioning in the gyms for the summer programs, explanation of the team room, another open house, show what is actually being offered for all areas and costs, teacher support, support of one school, expansion to 545,000 sq. ft., value engineering or buying cheap, bid timeline getting close, public comments and presentations, and scheduling the open house after the 90%.

Dennis Younkin reported that the Tax Study Commission would be holding a Public Hearing on Tuesday, November 14, 7:00 pm, in the Board Room. There will be between 6,000 and 7,000 Homestead/Farmstead applications mailed once the application update is complete. It will cost the district approximately $6,000 for the mailing. There is a task force formed to look at current
costs, all mandates, and the best practices. Quarterly reports will go to the Governor's office. No questions or public comment.

Dr. Hendrickson moved, Dr. McCracken seconded to adjourn the meeting at 11:05 pm. The motion passed. Ms. Werner announced the Board would adjourn to an Executive Session on Litigation.

Submitted by,
Mary Jenn Dorman
Board Secretary