Board Meeting Agenda/Minutes 12-15-14

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December 15, 2014 Regular Board Meeting
7:00 pm – Board Room
131 W. Nittany Avenue
State College, PA 16801


      Student Government Report

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.)


A motion to approve the listing of Routine Approvals as presented.
A. Out-of-State/Overnight Student Travel (attachment IV-A)
B. November 24, 2014 Regular Meeting Minutes (attachment IV-B)
C. December 1, 2014 Reorganization Meeting and Regular Meeting Minutes (attachment IV-C)
D. Accept December 1, 2014 Culture, Climate, and Learning Subcommittee Meeting Notes (attachment IV-D)
E. December 8, 2014 Special Meeting Minutes (attachment IV-E)
F. Financial Reports for October 2014 (attachment IV-F)
G. District Bills for November 2014 (attachment IV-G)
H. Budget Transfers for General Fund November 2014 (attachment IV-H)
I. Approve Winter Sport Booster Organizations for 2014-2015 school year (attachment IV-I)
J. Recommended new CAC for Technology Member (attachment IV-J)
K. Human Resources Recommendations (attachment IV-K)

A. A motion to approve the four new secondary course proposals for the 2015-2016 school year as presented at the December 1, 2014 meeting. (attachment V-A)
B. A motion to approve the attached contract amendment for the Superintendent of Schools. (attachment V-B)
A. District Goal Category: Student Learning
      Proposed 2015-2016 School Year Calendar (attachment VI-A)
B. District Goal Category: Facilities/Grounds
   High School Project
      Calendar Update (attachment VI-B1)
   Delta Information
      Educational Model (attachment VI-B2)
      Delta 30% Review (attachment VI-B3)
      Middle Level Program Update (attachment VI-B4)    
C. Permission to Bid Panorama Village - Phase II (attachment VI-C)
D. District Goal Category: Fiscal Stewardship
      2015-2016 Budget Planning Discussion (attachment VI-D1) (PowerPoint)
      Property Tax Relief Discussion (attachment VI-D2)

A. Board Subcommittee Reports
      Facilities and Grounds Subcommittee (attachment)
B. Central Intermediate Unit (CIU) Report
C. PA School Boards Association (PSBA) Report
D. National School Boards Association (NSBA) Report
E. Centre Region Council of Governments (COG) Liaison Report
F. Legislative Report
G. Citizens Advisory Committee (CAC) Liaison Reports

January 12, 2015 - Regular Meeting

**Action Items
Approve Revised Policy 214 - Faculty Scholars/Graduation
Approve the Proposed 2015-2016 School Year Calendar
District Goal Category: Facilities/Grounds
      Delta Update: Educational Model and Specifications
Permission to bid High School asbestos removal and Summer 2015 projects
District Goal Category: Fiscal Stewardship
      Food Service Annual Report
      2015-2016 Budget Planning
      Results of Underwriter Request for Proposal
      High School Project Financing
School Drive: Transition to Patton Township

January 19, 2015 - Special Meeting (Tentative)
District Goal Category: Fiscal Stewardship
      High School Project Financing
      2015-2016 Budget Planning

January 26, 2015 - Regular Meeting
**Action Items
Permission to bid Summer 2015 projects
Permission to bid High School asbestos removal
Approve Delta Middle Level Expansion
District Goal Category: Facilities/Grounds
      High School Project Update
District Goal Category: Fiscal Stewardship
      2015-2016 Budget Planning
STS Bi-Annual Update
Community Education Annual Review and Financial Results for 2013-2014 and CEEL Proposed Expansion for 2015-2016

February 2, 2015 - Work Session
District Goal Category: Facilities/Grounds
      High School Project 60% Review

February 9, 2015 - Regular Meeting
**Action Items
Approve Preliminary Budget for 2015-2016 Fiscal Year
District Goal Category: Facilities/Grounds
      High School Project Update

Ms. Concepcion called the Regular Board Meeting of the State College Area School District Board of Directors to order at 7:00 p.m. She welcomed all attending and those viewing from home. She announced the Board held an executive session prior to the meeting on a legal matter and negotiations. With the agenda before them, Ms. Concepcion asked board members for any changes, there were no changes to the agenda. 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, Scott Fozard, David Hutchinson, Jim Leous, Ann McGlaughlin, Jim Pawelczyk, Dorothea Stahl
Board members absent: Laurel Zydney (In Building, but not at Board table)
Board Secretary: Mary Jenn Dorman
Solicitor: Scott Etter
Superintendent: Robert O’Donnell
District Personnel: Sara Brennen, Randy Brown, Maru Cross, Todd Dishong, Jon Downs, Michael Hardy, Cathy Klein, Laurie Korman, Steve Lachman, Andrew Lloyd, Jacque Martin, Bonnie McMiniment, Linda Pierce, Jason Perrin, Sharon Perry, Ed Poprik, Donna Reinhardt, Eugene Ruocchio, Roy Schaeffer, Colleen Sheehan, Shelbi Smeltzer, Trish Storch, Donna Watson
Guests: Kendall Alle, Shawn Annarelli, Tom Beckett, Will Benner, Jose Corichi, Reilly Ebbs, Richard Fitzgerald, Gregory Hopp, Emma Lee, Cuyler Luck, Sydney McNulty, Abby Stevensen, Mark Stevenson, Shyam Sundar, Gillian Warner, Kaitlyn Warner
Dr. O’Donnell offered congratulations to State High basketball player, Kyla Irwin, on scoring her 1,000th point Friday night against Central Dauphin.
Dr. O’Donnell acknowledged AFSCME (American Federation of State, County, and Municipal Employees) Local 259, for their recent donation of $1,500 to the State College Food Bank. He recognized Sarah Dwyer’s recent National Board Certification and noted that she is a fourth grade teacher at Mount Nittany Elementary School.
Dr. O'Donnell reported that since Thursday, there has been an effort to get a negative social media account suspended.He’s had conversation with Chief King and any information can be given to the High School Principal or Officer Stec at 235-4999-the anonymous tip line. The person/people have not been identified yet and if another would occur, it has been advised not to engage with it.
Student Government Report
Dr. O’Donnell welcomed Student Government officers for a report. The following students came to the table:
Reilly Ebbs-President, Will Benner-Treasurer, Sydney McNulty-Parliamentarian, Kaitlyn Warner-Recording Secretary, and Gillian Warner-Corresponding Secretary. Ms. Ebbs reported on the general student assembly held on Friday, there are usually three or four held per year, and the main topics were 1) Alumni Day, 2) Graduation Day Gowns, and 3) Representative on the Board.
A decision has been made on the graduation gowns and they will be maroon with white cuffs for everyone. Ms. Ebbs noted that a petition is going around regarding Alumni Day and currently has 450 signatures. Students do understand the security issues but would really like to have the day reinstated. It is understood there will not be Alumni Day this year and discussed the possibility of a delayed start or early dismissal schedule for next year.
Many alums return, discuss their college experiences, explain to Learning Enrichment students different opportunities, and even though they want to honor the security aspect, students are enriched by Alumni Day and would like to see it continue.
She explained that the student representative to the Board would start for the January 12 meeting, she would be the person at the table, and possibly two or three students would attend with her. She described that the position after this year would be an elected position within the leadership council and would take place in May prior to the next year or at the beginning of the year. There could be more than one student, due to the time commitment, and they would attend on a rotating basis. Board members commented: applauded efforts on the graduation gowns, the email that went out to parents and students was very articulate, it was a great process, having Alumni Day is not a student government decision, developing a resolution for Alumni Day, many students want it to continue, discussed a sign-in, and the original purpose of networking for students.
Ms. Concepcion announced public comment and asked for a show of hands of those individuals wanting to address the Board. She noted 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. The following audience members addressed the Board:
--Steve Lachman, coach of the State High Debate Club, spoke on the Debate Team, places they have been, the number of away tournaments each year, length of trips being 1.5 to 4-hours long, the budget used to be $5,500 and now it is $4,000 with 40 active members. Parents were driving students but now the District would not allow parents driving other students. With this ruling, the team can no longer afford to go to some tournaments due to the transportation cost of a van or bus. The season is only half over and they have no money. They have been told to do fundraising. As of January 2015, they may need to be a pay-to-play activity. He provided a sheet to each board member showing expenses for the winter of 2015 and projected estimated expenses for 2015-2016 school year. A copy will be part of the official minutes.
--Mark Stevensen spoke on being part of the December trip last year and the severity of the roads. He knows that rules change. They need $7,000 more this year and requested consideration for $14,000 to $15,000 budgeted for next year. He has a student on the Debate Team, these students are some of the brightest produced in State High and asked for the monies to be allocated.
--Shyam Sundar noted that the Debate Team is a very good investment for the District and is not sure why they need to request funds. This group does not involve facilities but does bring fame to the District and are very likely to be accepted to good schools.
--Cuyler Luck shared that he is a student on the Debate Team and also plays soccer. He expressed that it is very gratifying to work with the best of State High and it is something he loves to do. He would like to finish out the year.
--Greg Hopp, a sophomore on the team, noted they need to know important facts, use the power of speech and debate, debate being a valuable training for every stage of life, can inspire through word of mouth, and is very passionate about this issue. This is the most academic club and provides future success. They are not asking to take money from other budgets, just need to cover transportation and registrations to continue practicing their skill.
A motion to approve the listing of Routine Approvals as presented.
--Out-of-State/Overnight Student Travel
--November 24, 2014 Regular Meeting Minutes
--December 1, 2014 Reorganization Meeting and Regular Meeting Minutes
--Accept December 1, 2014 Culture, Climate, and Learning Subcommittee Meeting Notes
--December 8, 2014 Special Meeting Minutes
--Financial Reports for October 2014
--District Bills for November 2014
                                    2014-2015                    Total
--General Fund:          $8,262,539.22              $8,262,539.22
Checks 1013878 through 1014417 and V102850 through V102885
--Food Service Fund: $172,374.00                  $172,374.00
Checks 61466 through 61511
--Athletics Fund:       $ 29,047.60                     $ 29,047.60
Checks 48009 and 48199

--Activities Fund:     $ 80,240.45                     $ 80,240.45
Checks 90781 through 90809
--Purchasing Cards:  $ 63,755.42                   $ 63,755.42
(October) Checks 1
91, 426, 1754, 805
Total All Funds       $8,607,956.69                 $8,607,956.69
--Budget Transfers for General Fund November 2014
--Approve Winter Sport Booster Organizations for 2014-2015 school year:
             State College Area High School Swimming/Diving Booster Club
             State College Area High School Girl’s Basketball Booster Club
             State College Area High School Boy’s Basketball Booster Club
--Appointment of new CAC for Technology Member
--Human Resources Recommendations (refer to attachment IV-K)
Mr. Hutchinson moved and Ms. Fishbaine seconded to approve the Routine Approvals. Board member noted that one of the listed items was sport booster clubs and the need to look into whether the approval is for the season or for the entire year. Some clubs are in action in the off-season and we might need to change how we look at the start date and end date. We should discuss for framework. With the motion moved and seconded above, all board members voted aye on a roll call vote. (Ms. Zydney was out of the room.) The motion passed unanimously.
A motion to approve the four new secondary course proposals for the 2015-2016 school year as presented at the December 1, 2014 meeting. Ms. Stahl moved and Ms. Fishbaine seconded to approve the motion. There was no discussion. All board members present voted aye on a roll call vote. (Ms. Zydney was out of the room.) The motion passed unanimously.
Ms. Zydney entered the room at 7:34 p.m.
A motion to approve the attached contract amendment for the Superintendent of Schools. Ms. Stahl moved and Mr. Fozard seconded to approve the motion. There was no discussion. All board members present voted aye on a roll call vote. The motion passed unanimously. Ms. Zydney left the board room and meeting at 7:35 p.m. Dr. Etter left the meeting at 7:35 p.m.
Proposed 2015-2016 School Year Calendar
Mr. Hardy reviewed the primary goals of the district calendar: 1) Support the educational program, 2) Support professional development, and 3) Convenience for families with a predictable start date. He spoke on the adjustment made since the first presentation of the calendar, one of the two weeks in March that only had two days instruction now has three days of instruction, and explained the movement of days keeping two days for spring conferences. Board member requested more clarification for March 9
and contractual requirement. Mr. Hardy explained the records day for the ending of a marking period.
Ms. McGlaughlin moved and Dr. Pawelczyk seconded to move the 2015-2016 School Year Calendar to action. All board members present voted aye with a voice vote. (Ms. Zydney had left the meeting.) Ms. Stahl moved and Dr. Pawelczyk seconded to approve the calendar as presented. Board members discussed: This calendar meeting the compromise and supporting the calendar resolution better, the spring conference days back, and thanked Mr. Hardy for taking this back to the committee and coming back with changes. Mr. Hardy thanked the committee for their time and efforts to arrive at an acceptable calendar.
With the motion and second made above to approve the 2015-2016 School Year Calendar, all board members present voted aye on a roll call vote. (Ms. Zydney had left the meeting.) The motion passed unanimously.

High School Project-Calendar Update

Mr. Poprik reported the project calendar has slipped two weeks behind. The Board will now see the 60% Review on February 2-a work session, and the presentation to the CAC for Facilities on February 5, 2015. The staff, student, and public 60% review need scheduled, Board will review feedback March 16-work session, and approve the 60% review at the March 23 meeting. He noted they are looking at a bid date of June 30, 2015, will consider phase bidding, will explore an early bid package to address some of the site issues, and emphasized only exploring and more information will come.
Board members discussed: Some bids sooner than June 30, less time for the 60% and 90% reviews due to being behind, the Board cannot accelerate anything, estimating does not start until the 60% review, not comfortable condensing the four-week window, phased bid smart thing to do, land development drawings were submitted today, push this forward to meet original calendar, being behind jeopardizing PlanCon, all being confirmed with PDE due to passed referendum and having community go ahead for project, level of confidence in long-term schedule due to two-weeks behind now, and did hit the deadline for the land development today but still many things outstanding.
Delta Information-Educational Model
Dr. O’Donnell noted that the High School Educational Model was anchored in the beliefs of the Guiding Principles. The Delta Educational Model is in action and some board members have been there recently. Dr. Downs spoke on the operation and culture, principles and decision-making bodies, nothing is new and has been in existence since 1974. Board members discussed: appreciation of the time spent with teachers, all have their part and do it well, very thorough, the Feast for Thanksgiving was quite an event, how spaces will be used, and the Educational Model and how it works with the Educational Specifications. Dr. Downs noted they are still trying to find times to have the high school students and middle level students all together at the same time.
Delta 30% Review and Feedback
Mr. Poprik had an updated drawing used for the Delta 30% Review with Delta High School and Middle Level Students, teachers and the public. All feedback from the day was documented and five pages were attached to the memo. Nothing required board action. Mr. Poprik reviewed the updated version on Westerly Parkway for Delta showing the site and negotiated parking in front of the building, the enhanced crossing for Delta students to the high school and back, Delta parking and bus drop off, the part of the North building being saved, the Delta two-story addition, a balance for the entrance and being secure, showed the administrative area, art/music shared with high school and middle level students, the area “stepping” up to the second floor offers large group area for presentations and mini-auditorium for gatherings, and this design model in our Ferguson Township School. Board members discussed: bisecting the parking lot, having the walkway instead of walking through lot, entrances are narrow, adequate for Delta but what about other events, possible ability to broaden, safety feature with second set of doors, the Delta access to outside, a set of bathrooms taken away, the path for students to come in and large enough area, not having an auditorium now, and going from two SGIs to no SGIs and how to use them. Dr. Downs explained the original planning was done without being at Delta and the SGIs were in for larger spaces, but with this design, he showed breakout spaces to satisfy the needs.

Board members discussed: HVAC on first floor by classrooms and no noise problem, the IT server room, the art room being new to this design, how acoustics in stairwell will be managed with certain levels of acoustic controls, and natural light.
Middle Level Program Update
Dr. Downs explained that the memo shows the source of students / grade level / schools and the staffing trends. Dr. O’Donnell noted they were responding to questions of the Board for the right size of the program and where we see it. The middle level right size is being proposed for the 2016-2017 school year for 120 students and the size of 9-12 would be 160 students. This is the first year for the middle level program, would like to iron out a few things and the transitioning of students. Dr. Downs added that the discussion would be similar to last spring as enrollment demands the increase of staffing. Board members discussed: Having another year of time will help to have a more informed decision, appreciates detail and what has been decided, impressed with another year and will improve on expanding, another year could also help facilitate expansion, a placeholder for January 26 meeting to approve expansion of Middle Level Delta, that being a long lead time and would want to know staffing expansion and budget planning, planning so far out, will not know retirements, possible students coming from charters, need to look at as temporary with moving pieces for one year, teacher certification comes into play for staffing, doing the expansion now or work towards, think about priorities but have made one with this program, and having Board understand the desire for this in the project.
Ms. Stahl left the meeting at 8:44 p.m.
Mr. Poprik reviewed the current project at Panorama Village. He then reviewed the project being proposed for permission to bid that would accommodate current needs housed in College Heights, office or classroom space, and how it would fit in the proposed project. He could ask for approval for the base bid (Phase II-B) a little over $1 million, and discuss Phase III-C later, approximately $.6 million. Office space is needed due to confidential conversations and displaced people need a home base. Section A houses all but two people at College Heights. Section C would have a small conference room, three individual offices, an open office area-cubicle type function, and a large room that could house Computer Services. Board members discussed: summer projects, nothing is being put off and there is money available, would help Mr. Poprik to decide tonight or by January 12 meeting at the latest, ramifications if not decided, no plan for non-instruction that needs space, long-term spaces vs. making these up as we go along, the need to bring 1950 up to standard, trends are going toward more open spaces, look at it as a solution that we can come up with right now, the space can be flexible and will be long-term, spaces being rented for meetings, bid the base project and an alternate, the size of the curriculum department and being together in what space, preference to hold off for Section C, and a decision tonight would be helpful. Ms. Fishbaine moved and Mr. Fozard seconded to move this item to action. All board members present voted aye with a voice vote. (Ms. Zydney and Ms. Stahl had left the meeting.)
Ms. Fishbaine moved and Mr. Hutchinson seconded to approve the permission to bid the Panorama Village Project, Phase II-the entire project. Board members discussed: OK with B but lacking an overarching plan, Computer Services slated for North building and would need to move again, would be 2018 before they would get to the North building, the complete plan for Panorama Village, and there is no long-term plan for the downtown campus. With the motion and seconded above, and with seven board members present, four members voted aye, and three nay (Ms. Concepcion, Ms. McGlaughlin, Dr. Pawelczyk) on a roll call vote. (Ms. Zydney and Ms. Stahl had left the meeting.) The motion passed 4 to 3.
Board members took a break from 9:25 to 9:36 p.m.
Mr. Fozard left the meeting at 9:35 p.m.

2015-2016 Budget Planning Discussion

Dr. O’Donnell introduced Donna Reinhardt, a valuable member of our team as an accountant. He provided a brief overview of the preliminary budget proposal with an increase of $4.6 million and a 1.9% tax increase, second lowest since 1997-98. There are four things he spoke on: 1) Integrated Mental Health-the screening process and addition of a school psychologist, 2) K-12 language arts, the largest core and outlined resources proposed and professional development, 3) Gifted Education new regulations to evaluate 2% of students, and 4) Evaluating Strategic Plan.
Mr. Brown reviewed the budget timeline beginning January 12, 2015 and explained the happenings at each meeting through June 8, 2015-the final budget approval. Exceptions applied for would be electoral debt. He spoke on Act 1 Index of 1.9%, local / state / federal resources, PlanCon letters for all debt we had not received for back projects in excess of $600,000, expenses for 2014-2015, Capital Reserve transfer, being primarily funded locally, the state being consistent, and no federal change. He reviewed the assessed value chart change, new parcels added this year, earned income tax growth going to one unified collector, PSU paying quarterly instead of monthly for a difference in cash flow but not a decreased amount, and expenses exclude referendum borrowing. Mr. Brown reviewed PSERS rates and noted we have a fund balance to offset percentage increase, Fund Balance and transfers, the referendum tax, Board approved exception allocation, debt issued over time during construction, millage rate and increase, and provided clarity for the referendum exception. Dr. O’Donnell added that as they plan for January 12 meeting, board members could send any questions they may have to him and/or Mr. Brown.
Property Tax Relief Discussion
Mr. Brown reviewed the CAC discussion for the Property Tax Relief Program sharing the points from the board for further consideration. After reviewing findings from programs offered by other districts, the feedback from the CAC discussion was: Liabilities would out weigh an exchange program, need to understand the definition of volunteer, need to research the Public School Code and other laws which might affect the tax relief program, compare goals of the program with potential benefits, and the district should consider a limit on the program, whethera rebate or exchange. The committee recommended that if the budget has the ability to support a program, they should establish a rebate program. Board members discussed: need board direction to go forward, looking through the table, they are exclusively income based, income and age, there is a genuine need in our community, CAC saw more cost and risk on the district’s part, not opposed to tax relief but not sure about proposing the exchange / volunteer, consider age and income and come up with a number for a limit, first come-first serve basis, straight rebate makes a lot of sense and qualifications are already defined, fixed or on a slide, move the exchange off the table, a nearby district has a volunteer program but only a handful of people, can use factors already out there for rebate, do not want to abandon the idea of an exchange, would like to look into, and should look at rebate programs and come back to board.


--Board Sub Committee Reports -- Facilities/Grounds Subcommittee met last week. Ms. McGlaughlin is the chairof the subcommittee and that a few things were achieved. The members agreed on a subcommittee charge and reviewed the charge. She explained the subcommittee will have an agenda prior to every meeting, will look at both short-term and long-term items, provided clarification for #4 if a Policy Subcommittee is developed, and this subcommittee is not looking to supplant what the CAC’s are already doing.
Dr. Pawelczyk moved and Mr. Leous seconded to accept the charge of the Facilities/Grounds Subcommittee. All board members present agreed to accept the charge. (Ms. Zydney and Ms. Stahl had left the meeting.) Dr. O’Donnell added that with this committee, they could plan a little better, and have a process to attain an important goal. Ms. McGlaughlin noted that the meetings are open to the public, the agendas will be shared with all board members, and the next subcommittee meeting is scheduled for January 15, 2015, 5:30 p.m. in the board room.

--PA School Boards Association (PSBA) Report
-Mr. Hutchinson reported that PSBA, along with other state-wide groups, presented their recommendations for a new school funding formula. The groups agree that the goal of any school funding formula is to provide fair, predictable and adequate funding to all school districts. A key recommendation is that any new formula would only apply to new funding, that is, dollars increased over the current 2014-2015 fiscal year and reviewed the factors to be included.
Citizens Advisory Committee (CAC) Liaison Reports
● Facilities - Met last Thursday and reviewed what the Board has seen tonight.
● Technology - Meeting scheduled for Wednesday, December 17, 2014, 7:00 p.m.
Ms. Concepcion asked for any questions or additions. She noted the 2015-2016 School Calendar was approved so it can be removed from the January 12 meeting, NW will be here for January 12 meeting, and information will be shared as soon as possible about the January 19 tentative work session. Board member asked about a vote on the preliminary budget and if it is necessary and Dr. O’Donnell responded that solicitor could have something to share for the January 12 meeting. At this time, we will assume we do and if something changes, we can remove the item.
Ms. Fishbaine moved and Ms. McGlaughlin seconded to adjourn the meeting. All board members present voted aye with a voice vote. (Ms. Zydney and Ms. Stahl had left the meeting.) The motion passed unanimously. Ms. Concepcion adjourned the meeting at 10:55 p.m.
Submitted by,
Mary Jenn Dorman
Board Secretary