Board Meeting Agenda/Minutes 10-14-13

The approved minutes are posted below the agenda. All attachments are PDFs.
 
State College Area School District
OUR MISSION: To prepare students for lifelong success through excellence in education.

October 14, 2013 Regular Board Meeting
7:00 pm – Board Room
131 W. Nittany Avenue
State College, PA 16801

I.  CALL TO ORDER AND PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE

II. COMMUNICATIONS

III. PUBLIC COMMENT
(Each individual will be limited to comments of five (5) minutes as time permits for items on this agenda or related to Board business.)

IV. ROUTINE APPROVALS
A motion to approve the listing of Routine Approvals as presented.
A. September 16, 2013 Work Session and September 23, 2013 Meeting Minutes (attachment IV-A1) (attachment VI-A2)
B. Budget Amendment for 2013-2014 School Year (attachment IV-B)
C. District Bills for September 2013 (attachment IV-C)
D. Non-Resident Student Request with Tuition Waived per Policy (attachment IV-D)
E. Second Reading and Approval of Revised/New Policies: (attachment IV-E)
         Revised Policy 819.1 - Suicide and Self Harming Prevention Policy
         Policy 218.2 - Threat Assessment (New)
F. Change Orders #5 and #6 for Memorial Field Project in amounts not to exceed $15,000 and $7,000 respectively to Mid-State Construction, Inc. (attachment IV-F)
G. Board Members attending PASA/PSBA Conference and/or serving as a Voting Delegate (attachment IV-G)
H. Human Resource Recommendations (attachment IV-H)

V. ACTION ITEMS
A. A motion to approve the Agreement with Advanced Disposal Services (our current service) as presented. (attachment V-A)
B. A motion to approve the continuation of half-day kindergarten in Ferguson Township, Easterly Parkway, and Radio Park Elementary Schools per a PDE request as presented. (attachment V-B)
C. A motion to approve the recommended High School Project Estimating Service (pre-referendum) as presented. (attachment V-C)
D. A motion to approve the Administration and Solicitor’s recommendation for Board consent to the termination of the Houts' Trust and distribution of the pro rata share to District (25%). (no attachment)

VI. INFORMATION / DISCUSSION
A. District Goal Category: Strategic Planning (attachment VI-A)
         Strategic Planning: Proposed Subcommittee Plans (PDE required)
B. Student Enrollment Report for 2013-2014 School Year (attachment VI-B)
C. Student Achievement: PA School Performance Profile (attachment VI-C)
D. District Goal Category: Facilities - High School Project
         Refined Project Calendar to Referendum (attachment VI-D1)
         Update on High School Project Financing (attachment VI-D2)  Addendum  (PowerPoint)
         Option Development
               High School South Building (attachment VI-D3)
               High School North Building (attachment VI-D4)
               Program Proposal: Parking (attachment VI-D5)
               Program Proposal: Athletic Fields (attachment VI-D6)
         Draft Educational Specifications
               Comparison with Current Program (attachment VI-D7)
E. District Goal Category: Fiscal Stewardship
         Proposed Substitute Teacher Service (attachment VI-E1)
         Budget FY2014-2015 Act 1 Index (attachment VI-E2)

VII. FUTURE AGENDA PLANNING

October 21 - Work Session
High School Project
         Option Development
Draft Educational Specifications
         Review of Process
         Educational Model Document
         Comparison with Current Program

October 28 - Regular Meeting

**Action Items
Approve Draft High School Educational Specifications as presented
Approve Proposed Parking and Athletic Fields for Site
Second Reading and Approval of Revised/New Policies:
         Revised Policy 246 - Wellness Policy for Physical Education, Physical Activity and Nutrition. Changed name and content to Coordinated School Health Policy
         Policy 822 - Automated External Defibrillator (AED) Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) New
         Revised Policy 114 - Gifted Education
**Information/Discussion
Strategic Planning: Proposed Subcommittee Plans (non-PDE)
Revised/New Policies for consideration:
         First Reading: Policy 217 - Graduation Requirements
         Remove Policy 819 - Management of Traumatic Events
         Policy 805 - All Hazards Planning (New)
Budget Development FY2014-2015
Student Achievement Report

November 11 - Regular Meeting

**Action Items
**Information/Discussion
Policy 702.1 - Memorials (New)

November 25 - Regular Meeting
**Action Items
Approval of Proposed Strategic Plan (including PDE required Comprehensive Plan)
Second Reading and Approval of Revised/New Policies:
        First Reading: Policy 217 - Graduation Requirements
        Remove Policy 819 - Management of Traumatic Events
        Policy 805 - All Hazards Planning (New)
**Information/Discussion
 
VIII. ADJOURNMENT
MINUTES

October 14, 2013 Regular Board Meeting
7:00 pm – Board Room
131 W. Nittany Avenue
State College, PA 16801
 
I. CALL TO ORDER AND PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE
Penni Fishbaine, board president, called the board meeting to order at 7:08 p.m. She welcomed and thanked all in attendance and those viewing from home and announced the board held an executive session September 23 on property and held an executive session prior to this meeting on a legal matter and property. Ms. Fishbaine announced that Item IV-E (Policies) under Routine Approvals is pulled and will be brought back to the October 28 meeting for approval. With the agenda before them, she asked board members for any changes; there were no other changes.
A copy of all materials distributed to board members for discussion and/or action is included with the official minutes, unless otherwise indicated.
Board members present: Amber Concepcion, Penni Fishbaine, David Hutchinson, Jim Leous, Ann McGlaughlin, Jim Pawelczyk, Gowen Roper, Dorothea Stahl (arrived at 7:31 p.m.), Laurel Zydney
Board members absent:
Board Secretary: Mary Jenn Dorman
Solicitor: Scott Etter
Superintendent: Robert O’Donnell
District Personnel: Michele Allen, Linda Andrews, Randy Brown, Scott DeShong, Sandy Emerich, Linda Eggebeen, Gretchen Fetterolf, Mardi Frye, Michael Hardy, Jeanne Knouse, Melanie Komlenie, Rebecca Lorantas, Julie Miller, Jason Perrin, Ed Poprik, Shannon Stallings
Guests: John Beddia, Scott Fozard, Matt Harlow, Mark Higgins, Matt Morgan, Jeff Straub, Scott Thomas, Pat Vernon, Michael Vind, Kelly Wilkins
 
II. COMMUNICATIONS
Dr. O’Donnell announced that Centre County League of Women Voters Candidates' Night would be held Tuesday, October 15, 7:00 p.m. in the Council Chamber of the State College Municipal Building, 243 South Allen Street. The State College Area School Board race will be one of the featured races, and candidates night will also be broadcast live on C-NET, Cable Channel 7.
 
He also shared that Pave It Forward, the district’s brick-naming campaign, kicked off recently and was announced at the Memorial Field Dedication ceremony on Friday. Donation forms are located here in central office and also at all district schools. Ms. Fishbaine added that access for information is located on the SCASD website home page under Buy A Brick.
 
III. PUBLIC COMMENT
Ms. Fishbaine asked for public comment and reminded audience members that each individual would be limited to comments of five (5) minutes as time permits for items on this agenda or related to Board business. She also noted that the board would listen to comments but not engage in conversation. The following audience member addressed the Board:
--Becky Misangyi spoke on the Literacy Program at the middle schools and the possibility of expansion for the coming year and she is not convinced that it is going well. She requested that the process go differently if this is to happen and that time is given to the public to comment. Her fear is that art and music will be cut and explained the situation with area being less time due to students getting chrome books back to homeroom.
 
IV. ROUTINE APPROVALS
A motion to approve the listing of Routine Approvals as presented.
-September 16, 2013 Work Session Minutes and September 23, 2013 Meeting Minutes
-Budget Amendment for 2013-2014 School Year as follows:
● The Division of Federal Programs has approved our Consolidated Application for Title I, II and III for the 2013-14 school year.
● The Career and Technical Center at the High School - North has received approval for their Title III-C Perkins Grant for the 2013-14 school year.
-District Bills for September 2013:
                           2013-14        Grand Total
General Fund: $7,377,472.83   $7,377,472.83
Checks 1007482 through 1007943 and V102470 through V102502
Food Service Fund: 133,834.12  133,834.12
Checks 60844 through 60949
Athletics Fund: 94,260.40   94,260.40
Checks 46576 and 46698
Activities Fund: 3,409.62   3,409.62
Checks 90396 through 90420
Purchasing Cards: 34,481.04   34,481.04
(Sept. 2013) Checks 177, 414, 6977, 780
Total All Funds: $7,643,458.01 $7,643,458.01
-Non-Resident Student Request with Tuition Waived per Policy
-Change Orders #5 and #6 for Memorial Field Project in amounts not to exceed $15,000 and $7,000 respectively to Mid-State Construction, Inc.
-Board Members attending PASA/PSBA Conference and/or serving as a Voting Delegate
-Human Resource Recommendations (please refer to attachment IV-H)
 
Dr. Pawelczyk moved and Dr. Roper seconded to approve the Routine Approvals minus Item E. All board members present voted aye on a roll call vote. (Ms. Stahl was absent.) The motion passed.
 
V. AGREEMENT with ADVANCED DISPOSAL SERVICES
A motion to approve the Agreement with Advanced Disposal Services (our current service) as presented. Dr. Pawelczyk moved and Ms. McGlaughlin seconded to approve the motion. There was no discussion. All board members present voted aye on a roll call vote. (Ms. Stahl was absent.) The motion passed.
 
VI. PDE REQUEST for HALF-DAY KINDERGARTEN APPROVAL
A motion to approve the continuation of half-day kindergarten in Ferguson Township, Easterly Parkway, and Radio Park Elementary Schools per a PDE request as presented. Ms. Zydney moved and Dr. Pawelczyk seconded to approve the motion. There was no discussion. All board members present voted aye on a roll call vote. (Ms. Stahl was absent.) The motion passed.
 
VII. HIGH SCHOOL PROJECT ESTIMATING SERVICES
A motion to approve the recommended High School Project Estimating Services (pre-referendum) as presented.

Dr. Pawelczyk moved and Ms. Concepcion seconded to approve the motion. A board member requested a review for this item by Mr. Poprik.
Mr. Poprik explained the function of the estimating firm, recognition of the Referendum question, and locked into a dollar figure. Crabtree Rohrbaugh will be getting estimates and also having a local firm getting estimates provides two sets of eyes looking over plans and making sure the dollar figures are in line. Mr. Leous added that there is no preconception that this firm would go forward beyond the referendum. Mr. Poprik responded that it could be possible, but would discuss the Construction Manager when the time comes.
 
With the motion moved and seconded above, all board members present voted aye on a roll call vote. (Ms. Stahl was absent.) The motion passed.
 
VIII. CONSENT to the TERMINATION of TRUST
A motion to approve the Administration and Solicitor’s recommendation for Board consent to the termination of the Houts’ Trust and distribution of the pro rata share to District (25%). Dr. Pawelczyk moved and Ms. Concepcion seconded to approve the motion. There was no discussion. All board members present voted aye on a roll call vote. (Ms. Stahl was absent.) The motion passed.
 
IX. DISTRICT GOAL CATEGORY: STRATEGIC PLANNING
Strategic Planning: Proposed Subcommittee Plans (PDE required)

Dr. O’Donnell highlighted that the most important components were being shared. He noted that information on two additional components would be brought to the board and explained that they are not required by PDE.
 
The process included 146 people across the district and community to take a strong district and make it better, shared how it all fits together, and the components of our plan are well above the state requirements. Dr. O’Donnell pointed out the Goals - meant for every student, Benchmarks, and Vital Signs. The Instructional Focus piece shows Four Pillars that focus on our jobs as adults and what we are doing to support the classroom.
 
He explained that he and Mr. Perrin are working with two individuals from Penn State and generating a relationship to help us measure and survey our community. This will be brought to the board as a research proposal and looks at this as a win/win opportunity. Mr. Perrin added that most of this is driven by the Instructional Focus and Four Pillar Areas.
 
Ms. Stahl arrived at 7:31 p.m.
 
Board members commented: a great amount of engagement, especially the students and was very impressed by them, speaks well to take advantage of the resources we have in this community, can create an organizational structure that compliments all the discussion, many talented people involved, regardless of the group we were working with at the time - the content was always very similar, really appreciate the follow
through with this, and Ms. Misangyi participated as a parent on the Steering Committee. Dr. O’Donnell noted that this would be posted on the Strategic Plan website.
 
X. STUDENT ENROLLMENT REPORT for 2013-2014 SCHOOL YEAR
Mr. Hardy and Mr. Perrin noted that the trends align with where we expect enrollment to be. Shelby Stewman is working on an update for us. Student numbers will be staying in the high 6,000 for some years and there is more migration in the district than growth and increases.
Board members questioned the numbers at the high school with the private school and if there were any “hot spots” - schools at capacity. Mr. Perrin responded that there is no significant jump at this time but may see a difference in a few years, and we have not seen the growth at Gray’s Woods and Radio Park as projected. Park Forest Elementary is still the largest school and Gray’s Woods and Radio Park are still below projections.
 
XI. STUDENT ACHIEVEMENT: PA SCHOOL PERFORMANCE PROFILE
Ms. Martin and Ms. Bauer joined Mr. Hardy and Mr. Perrin at the table to review the following information: The State released a new rating system different from AYP (Adequate Yearly Progress) of No Child Left Behind. The scores will be used to rate the professional staff, however, the secondary schools do not have scores at this time from Keystone Exams. Ms. Martin explained that information regarding a box being checked was not provided therefore, much of the data is missing. She also explained that we would be focused on practices that make sense for kids and that key, for our district, is different assessments.
 
Board members discussed: Keystone Exams for high school and both middle schools, this does not measure arts program, we are strong in the arts and more than this number, a single number stating that you are/are not a good school, 15% goes into teacher evaluation score, even guidance counselors and nurses that do not work with student education.
 
XII. DISTRICT GOAL CATEGORY: FACILITIES - HIGH SCHOOL PROJECT
A) Refined Project Calendar to Referendum
Mr. Poprik noted that the calendar would be updated and presented at every meeting. At the October 21st meeting, there will be no new information, just dig in and tear apart the information already given, provide suggestions, have the Community Forum on October 23, and at the October 28 meeting, action will be taken on some of the items. The Board will vote on the final option in December, estimator can take option and design estimates, Crabtree Rohrbaugh can refine their estimate, and by the end of January we should be comfortable with the number.
 
Board members commented and discussed: Thanked Mr. Poprik for the calendar, December 2 is coming quickly and planning needs to be done carefully, very aggressive goal, possibly trade off for communications, looking at North/South separately, need to make a decision on how we are going to approach, separate the two projects formally, we have a site plan that develops both sites, what can we do to separate or chunk out, separating this would impact the whole project, want to continue prioritizing the South side of the street and protect chances of not doing the South building, happy there are some gaps in there for more information, accelerating final option, adopting integrated designs in LEED, have not established any LEED goals, need to do this - possibly October 21, this cuts into communication time, approving the final option December 2, need to have time for people to comment, hear the comments, then discuss and vote what to do, communication can go along with it, look at the two calendars, one more generic, and thinking this calendar should go along with it on the high school project website.
 
B) Update on High School Project Financing
Mr. Brown provided a review with variables from a financing perspective include interest rate, the principal repayment schedule, the amount of current district tax revenue contributed to repayment of debt service, updated and expanded the five-year budget projections to ten-year projections, and referred to the projections as multi-year.
 
The high school financing projections prepared included two different repayment terms, level payment and a wrapped scenario. Wrapped debt service schedules are used to maintain a consistent repayment schedule for debt service to avoid peaks and valleys. He spoke on the Capital Reserve Fund throughout the years and, two types of Fund Balance - assigned and unassigned explaining the uses and the percentage that can remain in them, financing update on total project costs of $109, $112, and $115 million, the annual use of current tax millage, interest rate of 4.75% and 5.3%, and the tax increase and referendum debt.
 
Mr. Vind noted that 5.3% is where the interest rate has been the last years and being on the lower side of the historical norm, 4.75% was chosen that would result in several hundred thousand dollars difference. He spoke on the wrapped process and paying more in interest but then it is lessened, and the debt portfolio does have a good structure for a wrap. Mr. Brown then reviewed the three scenarios of the $109, $112, and $115 million cost and variations of funding.
 
Board members discussed: The next time the district can get re-rated, happens at next bond issue, wrap provides a shorter call and provides flexibility, $9 million Capital Reserve/Debt Service can be maintained for how long, can only guess what interest rates are going to be and there are things out of everyone’s control, right now we need to be constantly reevaluating, go as you can project, one third of the people will say yes, should we scope the project in a different way, the referendum question is an amount, by May 20 it could be totally different, 91% of those surveyed want the high school updated, 93% of referendums have failed in PA and we want success, what community is going to get for their money, not everyone in our community can stretch their budget, amount that we only need on referendum would be better to pass than higher number, high school desperately needs updated, need to be looking at all things, 70% do not have children in schools, not confident that we can reach all people to provide a level of understanding, good information and good effort from Mr. Brown and Ms. Watson, originally spoke on assumptions and now debt numbers are more clear, and what are you, the finance people, seeking from us? Mr. Brown responded that he brought inclusive information forward and if there was anything else the board wanted to see, they should let him know.
 
More discussion on accepting all that has been done but not sure it will pass referendum, not locking ourselves into an amount at this time, add to communication challenges, public will see this information very few times, we need to get it out there, but how do we keep doing that.
 
Board members took a break from 9:27 to 9:35 p.m.
 
C) Option Development
High School South Building
Mr. Beddia and Mr. Straub, Crabtree Rohrbaugh Association, and Mr. Harlow (ELA Group), joined Mr. Poprik at the table. Mr. Beddia explained that Concept D had been chosen. They took the program and have developed two possible solutions: 1) a design solution to the left, and 2) a design solution totally in front of the South building and have all the floor plans developed at this level.
 
Mr. Beddia reviewed the following for Option 1: The access in and out of buildings, the North side with Delta and keeping kitchen, pool, gymnasium and locker room. He noted the amount of daylight, explained the size of the Learning Communities, six pods, three floors high, and the agora being a commons areas, and not ready to identify what goes on each level until relationships are known. Mr. Harlow reviewed scenarios of where parking may/may not be, focus is on the building program, and focus on the building and where it needs to go.
 
Mr. Beddia reviewed the following for Option 2: This option has a compressed footprint, maintaining some of the existing structure, construction is in front that takes up most of the parking and shifts it to the North side, spoke on site instead of building layout, three stories in front of existing building, phasing could be a little more difficult, courtyards are more meaningful, student traffic measurement is about two thirds distance of Option 1, and easy pathways from one “zone” to another.
 
Board members discussed: stairwells being a combination of in and out, the out are fully enclosed, the main level of the building is at the mid-point, a gray roof, both meet the baseline of what we asked for, the second option is closer to Westerly Parkway and using space effectively, much to think about and felt like others we have seen, really need to look at different things, use LEED to evaluate design, address security concerns, cafeteria being more student friendly and becoming more open, top floor and some possibilities for green roofing, incorporating exhibition space, and feels like we are moving forward and getting somewhere now.
 
Athletic Fields
Ed Poprik spoke on athletic fields and had questioned how many are needed, especially for spring and fall. In the spring, four diamonds, a running track, and field for rugby are needed; in the fall, no diamonds but seven rectangle fields needed. Currently we are moving people around, sharing space, and experiencing overlap. Board members added: We are tight on fields, need more use for evening, this plan does not give us a reasonable remedy, fields are overused and are natural surface fields, our track supports four tracks in spring/summer, and very good points made.
 
Parking
Mr. Poprik had provided a chart that showed the current parking allocations and recommendations for Option 1 (High School only) and Option 2 (North re-use). The staff and handicapped parking recommendations reflected requirements and ADA standards, and additional student parking is also recommended. Currently, there is a total of 720 parking spaces, Option 1 (HS use only) offers 825 spaces, and Option 2 (with North re-use) offers 907 spaces using both sides of the street.
 
Board members discussed: Not needing as many visitor spots, the break down for North and South, they function together as a campus; parking is difficult to define due to many pieces missing, there is car pooling and mass transit, student numbers declining at the high school so why add parking, reduction of zoning requirement, and provide ELA some parameters to start. Mr. Harlow noted that in 2007 the Borough granted a reduction for 200+ spaces. Zoning requirements are based on square feet and the more sq. ft. you have inflates the number of parking spaces. 750-895 was recommended with a larger student body.
 
Discussion continued: Numbers are less than required and would be comfortable with using those numbers, difficulties with this, using a conceptual site, do not want a parking plan to drive the building plan, we have a site with constraints, there is less space with more building, what about the Driver’s Ed course, this is a large space available, and most were comfortable with the numbers for parking spaces provided by Mr. Harlow.
 
Draft Educational Specifications
Comparison with Current Program
Mr. DeShong reported that the current high school campus contains 302,000 sq. ft. of program space and the proposed Educational Specifications suggests 336,000 sq. ft., which is 34,000 sq. ft. more. He explained the number of classrooms in the current building verses the proposed program and noted the difficulties and complications in the comparison due to the current standard size of the classrooms and the proposed Educational Specifications being comprised of standard, small, large, and large group sized rooms. Each Learning Community has a student commons, which is not in the current high school, a collegiate lecture hall associated with the library, and the dining areas have been increased.

Board members discussed: The increased size, providing more efficiencies, better areas for the students, also wondered how educationally this is going to be better, lecture hall in library rather than using the auditorium, and spaces in the library can be used for different activities.
 
XIII. DISTRICT GOAL CATEGORY: FISCAL STEWARDSHIP
Proposed Substitute Teacher Service
Ms. Emerich had provided information to board members prior to the meeting and asked if anyone had any questions with the Substitute Teacher Service (STS) proposal.

Board members questioned:
● Have you received any feedback from teachers and/or Substitutes?
Response: There is nothing being taken away by this service. Retirees are excited to see this happen in the district. This will help with having difficulty getting substitutes.
● Is there a controlled number of hours or any restrictions on us?
Response: There is no restriction on the number of hours by STS
● Asked about paperwork for HR staff and there is no extra paperwork.
● How is mark up determined?
Response: There is a year-to-year contract - a standard quote contract. Other districts in the area may also use this, have checked in with other systems, and there will be a savings.
 
Budget FY2014-2015 Act 1 Index
 
Mr. Brown reported that the Act 1 Index of 2.1% was published in September. This is the maximum tax increase without requesting use of exceptions. He reviewed the timeline from January 2014 through June 2014 with the Budget Development Deadlines for 2014-2015 Fiscal Year. There was no further discussion.
 
XIV. FUTURE AGENDA PLANNING
Ms. Fishbaine noted that there would be a Work Session October 21, 2013, 7:00 p.m., Board Room and reviewed items coming up on the agenda. Items that were added to the agenda are:
● November 18, 2013 Work Session on the High School Project
● In the near future - Update on the Literacy Program
● Add STS and pulled Policies 819.1 and 218.2 for Action October 28
 
XV. ADJOURNMENT
Ms. Stahl moved and Ms. Concepcion seconded to adjourn the meeting. All board members present voted aye with a voice vote. The motion passed. Ms. Fishbaine adjourned the meeting at 12:00 a.m.
 
Submitted by,
Mary Jenn Dorman
Board Secretary