Carlynton School District

 

Agenda Setting/Committee/Voting Meeting

February 7, 2008

Carlynton Jr.-Sr. High School Library – 7:30 p.m.

 

MINUTES

The Carlynton School District Board of Education conducted its Agenda Setting/Committee/Voting Meeting Thursday, February 7, 2008 in the library of the junior-senior high school. Attendance included President David Roussos, Vice President Thomas Brown and School Directors Thomas DiPietro, Ronald McCartney, Patricia Schirripa, Betsy Tassaro, Raymond Walkowiak and Sharon Wilson (via phone). Also present was Superintendent Michael Panza, Solicitor Ira Weiss, Business Manager Kirby Christy, Pupil Services Director Lee Myford and Principals Amy Burch, Valerie Keys and Robert Susini. The audience was comprised of four individuals and two members of the press.

 

 

Call to Order - The meeting was called to order by President Roussos at 7:36  pm.

 

Roll callCarnegie Elementary students Jordan Fritchman, Brittany Halpern, Jeffrey Henke and Sara Mokricky were introduced by Principal Amy Burch. With musical instruments, they played “My Country ‘Tis of Thee” and then led the Pledge of Allegiance in unison. The roll was called by Recording Secretary Michale Herrmann. Director Hughan was excused from the meeting and Director Wilson joined the meeting via phone. All other members of the board were present.

 

public comment on business before the board: None

approval of minutes:

Director Tassaro moved, seconded by Director McCartney, to approve the minutes of the January 17, 2008 Meeting as presented.

Dr. Panza noted that Director Hughan had called to request that the minutes be amended to include her comments regarding the discussion with members of the swim club, particularly relevant to the dialogue of issuing a 1099 Form. 

Director McCartney moved, seconded by Director Walkowiak, to amend the minutes as suggested.  On a voice vote, the motion carried 8-0.

Approving the minutes as amended, the motion carried 8-0 by voice vote.

 

 

REPORTS:

  • Executive Session – President Roussos acknowledged that directors met in executive session prior to the board meeting to discuss personnel and contractual issues.

Ø      Principals’ Reports - High school principal Dr. Robert Susini provided a summary of the many happenings in the junior-senior high school as well as individual achievements of students. The report has been entered into record.

Ø      Superintendent’s Report – Dr. Panza opened discussion about class sizes for core academic courses in reference to Policy No. 107, where it states: “Before a course is included into the master schedule, it will be essential that a least fifteen (15) eligible students must be enrolled in the course…”

Director Schirripa stated she would ideally like to see core class sizes at 15 students and electives at 30 (whereas, in the past, it has often been the opposite). Dr. Panza agreed, noting the demand-tally of the master schedule should be available as of March 1 and then class sizes for next year can be better determined.

Director DiPietro suggested a study take place over the next five years to eliminate classes with low enrollment.

President Roussos admitted that the class size policy was violated, and it should be modified, recommending the 15 student limit be removed.  He promised to make a motion, to that effect, later in the meeting, adding that all resources must be invested in core classes.

Director Wilson suggested the administration should recommend which classes will be held and which should be eliminated.

Director Brown stated he is not comfortable changing policy until the numbers are in (from student scheduling) and an analysis is conducted.

 

Ø       Dr. Panza proceeded with his report, noting several upcoming calendar events and activities and remarked on the following:

ü      The SAT Prep Course information was distributed to students /parents and a sign-up sheet has been placed in the office

ü      The report cards were issued with a minor error at the secondary level; that concern has been corrected

ü      Provided information about a program called ‘Global Connect’ – a system to notify parents by phone when early dismissals or cancellations occur

ü      Brought forth a letter from a “Mr. Smith,” and asked publicly for “Mr. Smith” to contact him in an attempt to resolve the issues

ü      Informed the board that Eric Thompson, a basketball coach, would be completing a field study with the technology staff

ü      Acknowledged a petition signed by parents requesting the arts be kept alive in the district

ü      With the rising fuel costs, First Student (formerly Laidlaw) has asked the district to pay an additional fee for diesel; a fuel consortium through the AIU will be placed on the next agenda

ü      Governor Rendell’s budget illustrates that 40% will be focused on education

ü      Recommendations of the Education Committee hope to resolve a computer shortage at the elementary level by adding two more carts with laptops; by purchasing with the current technology, it will save money [Director DiPietro asked if power sources were replaced in computers (from a former discussion); Network Facilitator Frank Sacco said they were, except for a few at Crafton, which would be replaced soon]

ü      Dr. Panza then asked Lee Myford, Director of Pupil Services, to offer a report. She provided information about special education funding and current state mandates. In closing, she noted a meeting will be held February 26, in the library, for parents of gifted students.

ü      In conclusion, Dr. Panza asked the solicitor to recognize Al Lubelski, a new attorney to Ira Weiss’ office.

 

BUSINESS BEFORE THE BOARD:

 

·         Miscellaneous

 

Director McCartney moved, seconded by Director Walkowiak, to approve the list of Conference and Field Trip Requests as presented:  

§         C…Amy Burch… Sheraton SS/Reading Workshop…1/28-30

§         C…Erin Cummings…Sheraton SS/Reading Workshop…1/28-30

§         C…Meredith Kladakis… Sheraton SS/Reading Wrksp…1/28-30

§         C…Kara Trant…Sheraton SS/Reading Workshop…1/28-30

§         C…Heather Casserly…PATTAN Pgh/PSSA Workshop…2/4

§         C…Brian Harewicz…PATTAN Pgh/PSSA Workshop…2/4

§         C…Bethany Martys… PATTAN Pgh/PSSA Workshop…2/4

§         FT…M. Tierney…Neville Island/Pgh Engineers-GATE…2/20

§         FT…Kevin Lucey…Belle Vernon HS/Region Band Fest…2/20-22

§         C…Teresa Coburn…RMU/Autism Workshop…2/21

§         C…Amy Shaddick…RMU/Autism Workshop…2/21

§         C…Jen Wood…RMU/Autism Workshop…2/21

§         FT…Stefanie Barnes…Convention Ctr/College Fair…2/28

§         C…Ryan Gevaudan & staff…Radisson/FB Clinic…2/29-3/2

§         C…Kelly Papst…PATTAN Pgh/Speech & Lang. Workshop…3/28

§         FT…Kevin Lucey…Upper St. Clair HS/Dist. Orchestra…4/5, 4/11

(Miscellaneous Item #0208-1 REVISED)  On a voice vote, the motion carried 8-0.

 

 

·         Finance

 

Recommend approval of the Treasurer’s Report for the month of December 2007 as submitted. PLACE ON AGENDA

 

Recommend approval of the December 2007 bills in the amount of $1,895,706.51 as presented.  PLACE ON AGENDA

 

Recommend acceptance of the 2006-2007 school year Local Audit Report as presented by Hosack, Specht, Muetzel and Wood.  (Finance Item #0208-1)  PLACE ON AGENDA

 

Recommend approval of the Treasurer’s Report for the month of January 2008 as submitted.  PLACE ON AGENDA

 

Recommend approval of the January 2008 bills in the amount of $___________ as presented.  PLACE ON AGENDA

 

Recommend approval of the Crafton Real Estate Tax Refunds as presented. (Finance Item #0208-2)  PLACE ON AGENDA

 

Recommend approval of the Rosslyn Farms Real Estate Tax Refunds as presented (Finance Item #0208-3)  PLACE ON AGENDA

 

Recommend approval of the Carnegie Real Estate Tax Refunds as presented. (Finance Item #0208-4)  PLACE ON AGENDA

 

 

Recommend approval of the December 2007 and January 2008 Cafeteria Report as submitted by Aramark Educational Services.  (Finance Item #0208-5)  PLACE ON AGENDA

 

Director McCartney moved, seconded by Director Tassaro, to acquire the services of Mark Shonberg, as recommended by the solicitor, to represent the district in a tax appeal case at a base cost of $4,500.  (Finance Item #0208-6)

Director Brown explained the spending of tax dollars is necessary to appeal an unreasonable assessment on the Towers in Carnegie. By doing so, the board is striving to be fiscally responsible.

 

And to approve the service agreement with Strategic Energy L.L.C., which hereby enters the Carlynton School District into a power supply coordination agreement for the purchase and supply of the District’s electricity requirements.  This represents the District’s intent to extend the agreement that was originally approved on December 8, 2005 for an additional two (2) year period.  (Finance Item #0208-7) On a voice vote, the motion carried 8-0.



·         Personnel

 

The following three items were approve in one motion:

Director Tassaro moved, seconded by Director Wilson, to approve the additions to the Day-to-Day Substitute List as approved by the administrative staff as presented:

§         Mary Lou Martin – English 9-12

§         Stacy Grego – Mathematics 7-12

§         Tonilyn Longo – English 7-12

§         Bridget Natale – English 7-12

§         Jill Atallah – Lunchroom/Playground Aide

                   (Personnel Item #0208-1 REVISED)

 

To approve the additions to the 2007-08 Athletic Supplemental Contracts as presented and approved by the administrative staff:

§         Nate Milsom – Varsity Head Boys’/Girls’ Track

§         Emily Wheeler -  Seventh/Eighth Grade Volleyball

                                       (Personnel Item #0208-2 REVISED)

 

And to approve the additions to the 2007-08 Activities Supplemental Contracts as presented and approved by the administrative staff:

§         Erin Cummings – Carnegie Peer Helper Sponsor

             (Personnel Item #0208-3)

              On a voice vote, the motion carried 8-0.

 

Recommend approval of the additions to the 2008-09 Athletic Supplemental Contracts as presented and approved by the administrative staff:

§         Ryan Gevaudan –Football, Varsity Head

§         Steve Macellaro – Football, First Assistant Varsity

§         John Tortorea – Football, Assistant Varsity

§         Nate Milson – Football, Assistant Varsity

§         Joshua Ficorilli – Football, Junior High Head

§         Michael Donovan – Football, Junior High Assistant

§         James Bassano – Golf

§         Lawrence Fingers – Soccer, Varsity Head Boys’

§         Meghan Dettling – Soccer, Varsity Head Girls’

§         James Glaser – Tennis, Varsity Head Girls’

§         Emily Tupi – Volleyball, Varsity Head

      (Personnel Item #0208-4)  PLACE ON AGENDA

 

Recommend approval to award a Professional Employee Contract to Mercedes Tierney for completing three years of satisfactory services  as of February 2008 as submitted by the administrative staff and consistent with the provisions of Section 1108 of the Pennsylvania School Code.  PLACE ON AGENDA

 

The following four items were approved in one motion:

Director Tassaro moved, seconded by Director McCartney, to approve Donna McDonough for the temporary position as High School Administrative Assistant, effective January 22, 2008. This position is per the terms and conditions of the SCA Collective Bargaining Unit Agreement;  (Personnel Item #0208-5)

 

To approve a Family Medical Leave of Absence as requested by elementary guidance counselor Sheree Lee, effective January 2-23, 2008;  (Personnel Item #0208-6)

 

To approve an unpaid leave of absence for lunchroom/playground aide Ruth Charles, effective January 24, 2008, and not to extend beyond 90 work days;  (Personnel Item #0208-7)

 

And to accept the resignation of Russ Pedersen from the supplemental activities contract position of Auditorium Manager, effective February 28, 2008. (Personnel Item #0208-8)  On a voice vote, the motion carried 8-0.

Dr. Panza thanked Mr. Pedersen for his fine work while serving in this capacity; the board concurred.

 

UNFINISHED BUSINESS:

President Roussos moved, seconded by Director Tassaro, to modify Policy No. 107 by striking the last paragraph in the policy which reads: “Before a course is included into the master schedule, it will be essential that at least fifteen (15) eligible students, as certified by the building principal, must be enrolled in the course being offered during any school year unless the course offered can be combined with another appropriate course so that at least fifteen (15) students are included for instruction during each period that the class meets.” 

President Roussos added he believes this paragraph hampers the administration.

Director Schirripa conveyed that by abandoning the paragraph, the same problem could occur in the upcoming year.

Director McCartney suggested the following phrase be added: “Core classes would be given top priority,” or “consideration would be granted on a case by case basis.”

Director Tassaro asked for Solicitor Weiss’ opinion, to which he provided several suggestions, concluding that policy is written as a guideline and guidelines are necessary for a reason.

Director Brown reiterated that he was not prepared to make a decision at the present time.

President Roussos suggested the motion be laid on the table, citing it could be discussed at another time.  All board members agreed.

President Roussos moved, seconded by Director McCartney, to lay the motion on the table. On a voice vote, the motion carried 8-0.

 

NEW BUSINESS:

Director Tassaro reminded the board that the swim team would honor its seniors at Senior Night the following Monday.

OPEN FORUM:

Director Wilson congratulated all involved with the “Tied to the Arts” night.

   

ADJOURNMENT: With no further business to discuss, Director McCartney moved to adjourn the meeting at 8:45 pm, seconded by Director Walkowiak. On a voice vote, the motion carried 8-0.