MINUTES REGULAR MEETING OF SCHOOL BOARD
OF BLOOMFIELD SCHOOL DISTRICT
January 29, 2015
The Board of School Trustees of the Bloomfield School District, of Greene County, Indiana, met in regular session on January 29, 2015, in the jr/sr high school conference room in Bloomfield Junior/Senior High School, 501 West Spring Street, Bloomfield, Indiana. The following school board members were present: John Combs, Steve Dowden, Dwayne Hostetter, Steve Jones, Keven McIntosh, Matt Miller and Sandy Parkes. President Hostetter called the regular board meeting to order at approximately 7:00 p.m. The following order of business was transacted with President Hostetter presiding:
1. President Sets Protocol for Board Meeting. President Hostetter told those present what the procedures for the meeting were to be.
2. Recognitions. Mary Jane Vandeventer began recognitions by saying that Family Literacy Night was a great success and announced that the second grade annual zoo trip was coming up soon. Ms. Vandeventer also shared that nine Bloomfield Elementary teachers along with herself attended an ISTEP conference in preparation for upcoming ISTEP testing. Mr. Dean congratulated NJROTC members on passing a recent inspection with flying colors and shared that the Bloomfield Varsity Boys Basketball team had brought home the "Keg" after a five overtime win over Eastern Greene. Mr. Dean also recognized Business Professionals of America (BPA) members for doing great at a recent District competition in Terre Haute. He also said the seventh and final day of curriculum consortium work through Southern Indiana Education Center with Math and Language Arts would be soon. Mr. Sichting sent kudos to the NJROTC group for their recent inspection and said Family Literacy Night was a huge success. Mr. Sichting also shared that the girls varsity basketball team had traveled to Hanover College recently to present college basketball player Lauren Hill who has terminal cancer with a check for over $850.00 raised from a "Shoot for a Cure" night held by the Bloomfield Girls Basketball team. He said Miss Hill was not feeling well enough to make the trip, but the team was able to present the money to her coach along with a "Shoot for a Cure" tee shirt. Mr. Dean added that he was very proud of Bloomfield students and families who had rallied around two senior students Mason Ellis and Chastain Jackson who were recently involved in a vehicle accident. He said students had collected a love offering and sold tee shirts with the proceeds going to the boy's families. President Hostetter welcomed Steve Jones and Keven McIntosh who are two new board members attending their first official regular meeting. President Hostetter told the new members that there was no instruction book for being a school board member. He said they would find out very quickly to do the best job they can on a day to day basis to make Bloomfield Schools the best they can be. Mr. Hostetter then read the Indiana School Boards Association Code of Ethics.
3. Comments on Agenda Items. Bloomfield student Samantha Clayton stated that she had asked that her prom date be approved to attend prom and was denied. Miss Clayton asked that the Board hear her appeal. Board members thanked Miss Clayton.
4. Approval of Minutes. The Board had been provided with minutes of an executive session and a regular school board meeting both held on December 30, 2014, along with an executive session, a special reorganization meeting and a special meeting of the Board of Finance all being held on January 8, 2015 which had been prepared by corporation recording secretary Kelli Usrey. John Combs made a motion to approve the minutes of the proposed meetings beginning with the sentence: "The Board of School Trustees of the Bloomfield School District, of Greene County, Indiana, met in executive session on December 30, 2014... " and ending with the sentence: "The (January 8th Board of Finance) meeting was adjourned by a 7-0 vote." Sandy Parkes seconded the motion, which passed by a 4-3 vote. Sandy Parkes, Dwayne Hostetter, Matt Miller and John Combs voted in favor of the motion. Steve Dowden, Steve Jones and Keven McIntosh abstained. Mr. Dowden abstained because he was not in attendance at the December meetings. New board members Steve Jones and Keven McIntosh abstained because they were not on the Board during the December meetings.
5. Treasurer's Report. The Board had been provided with the Treasurer's Report, prepared by corporation treasurer Stacey Robinette. Sandy Parkes made a motion to approve the January, 2015 claims listing beginning with voucher number 1092 to Bender Lumber Company and ending with voucher number 79 to Walmart Community, the December 31, 2014 appropriation report beginning with Fund 0100 through Fund 0420 and the December 31, 2014 Bank Statement. Steve Dowden seconded the motion, which passed by a 7-0 vote.
6. Transfer of Appropriations 2014 Budget. It was recommended the Board accept a report from the Bloomfield School District's Treasurer showing transfers within and among both minor and major categories in all funds in order to allow for expenditures to close out the 2014 budget. (See Attached) Steve Dowden made a motion to approve the recommendation. Keven McIntosh seconded the motion.
Mr. Sichting said the Board of School Trustees adopted a resolution at the November 20, 2014 meeting allowing and authorizing the Treasurer to make these transfers and was at that time advised a final report showing all transfer activity would be supplied at the January 29, 2015 regular school board meeting. The motion to transfer appropriations for the 2014 budget report passed by a 7-0 vote.
7. January 2015 Indiana Department of Education State Aid 545 Report. Superintendent Sichting provided board members with information from the IDOE concerning the State Aid 545 Report. Bloomfield School District received the January 545 Basic Grant payment from the Indiana Department of Education on January 15, 2015. Bloomfield School District received four hundred fifty seven thousand five hundred nine dollars and ninety eight cents ($457,509.98) from the Indiana Department of Education. The funds were deposited in the Bloomfield School District General Fund. The January 545 Basic Grant payment is calculated on an ADM of 877.73 students. On Tuesday, January 20, 2015, the Bloomfield Average Daily Membership was 864.40 students. A second Average Daily Membership count will be taken in February, 2015. The payments for May and June would be adjusted for increases or decreases in ADM which would impact funding.
The January 545 Basic Grant payment for Bloomfield School District was reduced by ten dollars and ten cents ($10.10) due to Medicaid reimbursement the district received in January. Bloomfield School District received Medicaid reimbursement of twenty eight dollars and forty six cents ($28.46) on December 29, 2014. Treasurer Stacey Robinette would be transferring ten dollars and ten cents ($10.10) from the Medicaid holding account to the General Fund.
In 2010, Bloomfield School District was receiving one million thirty eight thousand seven hundred thirty eight dollars ($1,038,738) more in calendar year funding. Bloomfield School District has lost 17% of funding. The loss of funding is due to a drop in student enrollment along with the loss of the Small Schools Grant and Rural Schools Grant. In comparison, Bloomfield School District has lost 19% of the student enrollment.
8. 1782 Notice for 2015 Bloomfield School District Budget. Superintendent Sichting provided information to board members on the 1782 Notice for 2015 budget. Bloomfield School District received the 1782 Notice from the Indiana Department of Government Finance on Friday, January 2, 2015. The Indiana Department of Local Government Finance issues the 1782 Notice to local government units establishing appropriation limits, tax rates, and tax levies for the governmental units. The 1782 Notice received on Friday, January 2, 2015 from the Indiana Department of Local Government Finance authorized the following spending or appropriation levels for Bloomfield School District funds for 2015:
• General Fund-$5,940,991
• Debt Service-$838,000
• School Pension Debt-$232,321
• School Capital Projects-$716,000
• School Bus Replacement-$205,000
A comparison of the 2014 fund levies with fund levies from previous budgets are listed below:
SIX YEAR HISTORY OF CERTIFIED LEVY
Fund Budget Yr. 2010 Budget
Yr. 2011 Budget
Yr. 2012 Budget
Yr. 2013 Budget Yr. 2014 Budget
General XXXX XXXX XXXX XXXX XXXX XXXX
Debt Service 712,876 $712,856 $729,888 $761,016 574,097 $503,596
Capital Projects 370,873 $371,387 $346,996 $535,089 $469,138 $611,466
Transportation 513,956 $517,878 $544,182 $559,254 $572,767 $435,520
Sch. Bus Replacement 55,679 $144,428 $111,608 $102,415 $104,985 $107,870
Special Ed. Preschool XXXXX XXXXX XXXX XXXX XXXX XXXX
Retirement/Pension Bond Debt Service 199,396 $206,498 $218,781 $226,310 $253,164 $203,418
Total 1,852,780 1,953,047 $1,950,555 $2,184,084 $1,974,951 $1,891,870
The table below compares the 2015 tax rate to the 2014 tax rate:
Fund 2014 2015
General XXXX XXXX
Debt Service $0.2968 $0.2493
Capital Projects $0.2422 $0.3027*
Transportation $0.2957 $0.2156**
School Bus Replacement $0.0542 $0.0534
Special Education Preschool XXXX XXXX
Retirement/Pension Bond Debt Service $0.1307 $0.1007
Total $1.0196 $0.9217
*-Neutralization of $199,000 worth of Retirement/Pension Debt occurred from the Capital Projects Fund in 2014. In 2015, no neutralization occurred from Capital Projects.
**-Neutralization of $199,000 worth of Retirement/Pension Debt occurred from Transportation in 2015. In 2014, no neutralization occurred from Transportation.
In 2014, the Assessed Valuation of Bloomfield School District was $193,698,523. In 2015, the Assessed Valuation of Bloomfield School District was $202,003,921.
9. 2012 Impact Aid Payment Received. Mr. Sichting gave board members information concerning the receipt of a 2012 Impact Aid payment. He said Bloomfield School District received a payment of two thousand six hundred seventy six dollars and twenty four cents ($2,676.24) from the U.S. Department of Education Office of Elementary and Secondary Education Impact Aid Program on December 30, 2014. The funds were deposited into Bloomfield School District bank account on January 2, 2015. The payment deposited on January 2, 2015 is for reimbursement from fiscal year 2012. He explained that Impact Aid is reimbursement for federal property located within the boundaries of the local school district declared tax exempt and receiving no reimbursement for property taxes. All Impact Aid payments are receipted into the General Fund.
10. Bloomfield Jr/Sr High School NJROTC Unit (Overnight) Field Trip. It was recommended the Board approve an overnight field trip for the Bloomfield Jr.-Sr. High School NJROTC Unit to Indianapolis, Indiana departing Bloomfield at 4:00 P.M. on Friday, February 20, 2015 and returning to Bloomfield on Saturday, February 21, 2015. Matt Miller moved to approve the recommendation. John Combs seconded the motion. Mr. Sichting said twenty (20) cadets from the Bloomfield Jr.-Sr. High School NJROTC Unit would travel to Indianapolis to participate in a Drill Competition at Pike High School. The cadets would depart from Bloomfield at 4:00 P.M. on Friday, February 20, 2015. The cadets would return to Bloomfield at approximately 8:00 P.M. on Saturday, February 21, 2015. The cadets would be staying overnight in a motel. The cost of lodging and some meals would be provided through NJROTC fundraising efforts. Mr. Sichting said Lt. Commander Michael Cluver and Chief Petty Officer David Hultberg would be the primary chaperones for the field trip along with Mrs. Paula Cluver. The cadets and chaperones would be transported to Indianapolis via two (2) Bloomfield School District white mini-buses. The cost of the fuel for the trip would be paid for through NJROTC fundraising efforts. The field trip was approved by a 7-0 vote.
11. Overnight Field Trip for Bloomfield Jr/Sr High School Business Professionals of America. It was recommended the Bloomfield School District Board of School Trustees approve an overnight field trip for the Bloomfield Jr.-Sr. High School Business Professionals of America to participate in the Business Professionals of America State Leadership Conference in Indianapolis, Indiana from March 15, 2015 through March 17, 2015. Steve Dowden moved to approve the recommendation. Sandy Parkes seconded the motion. Mr. Sichting said approximately eleven (11) members of the Bloomfield Jr.-Sr. High School Business Professionals of America chapter would be competing at the Business Professionals of America State Leadership Conference in Indianapolis from March 15, 2015 through March 17, 2015. The Bloomfield Jr.-Sr. High School BPA members earned the right to compete at the state competition due to their performance at the Regional BPA competition held at Ivy Tech in Terre Haute on Saturday, January 17, 2015. The Business Professionals of America members and chaperones would depart from Bloomfield on Sunday, March 15, 2015 and stay overnight in the Indianapolis Marriott Hotel on March 15, 2015 and March 16, 2015. The BPA members and chaperones would return to Bloomfield on March 17, 2015. The students would miss two (2) instructional days participating in the competition. The members and chaperones would be transported to Indianapolis by two (2) Bloomfield School District mini-buses. The cost of the fuel for the trip would be paid from Bloomfield Jr.-Sr. High School fundraising activities. The motel expenses and meals would be partially covered by Bloomfield Jr.-Sr. High School Business Professionals of America fundraising efforts. Students would be responsible for any costs not raised from fundraising efforts. The primary chaperones for the field trip would be Bloomfield Jr.-Sr. High School Business Professionals of America co-sponsors Mrs. Erika Bault and Ms. Nicole Fougerousse. The trip was approved by a 7-0 vote.
12. Twin Rivers Health Careers HOSA State Leadership Conference (Overnight). It was recommended the Bloomfield School District Board of School Trustees approve the request of one Bloomfield Jr.-Sr. High School student to participate in the overnight field trip of the Twin Rivers Health Careers class to the HOSA (Future Healthcare Professionals) State Leadership Conference in Indianapolis, Indiana from April 13, 2015 to April 15, 2015. (See Attached) Matt Miller moved to approve the recommendation. Sandy Parkes seconded the motion. Mr. Sichting explained that Junior and Senior students at Bloomfield Jr.-Sr. High School are provided an opportunity to participate in the Twin Rivers Health Careers Vocational Program. As part of the Twin Rivers Health Careers curriculum, the Twin Rivers Health Careers Vocational program competes in the state healthcare competitions through the HOSA organization. Miss Jocelyn Gadberry is a senior at Bloomfield Jr.-Sr. High School and attends the Twin Rivers Health Careers program housed on the east side of Linton. Miss Gadberry would be participating in the HOSA (Future Healthcare Professional) State Leadership Conference in Indianapolis from April 13, 2015 through April 15, 2015. Miss Gadberry and approximately six (6) other students would be participating in the event. The students would leave Linton at approximately 11:00 A.M. on Monday, April 13, 2015. The students would arrive back in Linton at approximately 4:00 P.M. on Wednesday, April 15, 2015. Miss Gadberry would miss approximately one-half of an instructional day at Bloomfield Jr.-Sr. High School on Tuesday, April 14, 2015 and Wednesday, April 15, 2015. The seven (7) students would be transported to Indianapolis via a Linton-Stockton mini-bus. The students and chaperone would be staying at the Indianapolis Sheraton Hotel for the competition. The primary chaperone for the field trip would be Carmen Cross, Twin Rivers Health Careers instructor. The trip was approved by a 7-0 vote. Superintendent Sichting wished Miss Gadberry the best of luck in this competition.
13. Bloomfield Jr/Sr High School NJROTC Unit Overnight and Out-of-State Field Trip Approved. It was recommended the Board approve an overnight and out-of-state field trip for the Bloomfield Jr.-Sr. NJROTC Unit to Columbus, Ohio from March 5, 2015 through March 7, 2015 for the Area #3 District Drill Competition. (See Attached) John Combs made a motion to approve the field trip as requested. Matt Miller seconded the motion. Mr. Sichting said approximately twenty (20) cadets from the Bloomfield Jr.-Sr. High School NJROTC Unit would participate in the Area #3 NJROTC Drill Competition in Columbus, Ohio from March 5, 2015 through March 7, 2015. The students would depart for the Area #3 Drill Competition at 4:00 P.M. on Thursday, March 5, 2015 and arrive back in Bloomfield from the Area #3 Drill Competition at approximately 6:00 P.M. on Saturday, March 7, 2015. The cadets would miss one (1) instructional day participating in the Area #3 Drill Competition. The cadets and chaperones would be transported from Bloomfield to Columbus, Ohio via two (2) Bloomfield School District mini-buses with the cost of fuel for the trip will be paid from Bloomfield NJROTC fundraising efforts. The motel accommodations and some meals for the cadets will be paid from the Bloomfield Jr.-Sr. High School NJROTC Unit fundraising efforts. Lt. Commander Michael Cluver and Chief Petty Officer David Hultberg would be the primary chaperones for the field trip along with Paula Cluver, Kim Wright, and Stephanie Gadberry. The trip was approved by a 7-0 vote.
14. Board Approves NJROTC Unit Overnight and Out-of-State Field Trip to Charleston, South Carolina. It was recommended the Bloomfield School District Board of School Trustees approve an overnight and out-of-state field trip for the Bloomfield Jr.-Sr. High School NJROTC Unit to Charleston, South Carolina from March 23, 2015 through March 28, 2015. (See Attached) Keven McIntosh moved to approve the recommendation. Steve Dowden seconded the motion. Superintendent Sichting said approximately twenty (20) cadets and four (4) chaperones would be participating in the trip. The cadets and chaperones would depart from Bloomfield at 5:00 A.M. on Monday, March 23, 2015 and return to Bloomfield at approximately 8:00 P.M. on Saturday, March 28, 2015. The cadets would not miss any instructional days during the field trip as the trip coincides with the Bloomfield School District Spring Break. The cadets and chaperones would be visiting Charleston, South Carolina during the Spring Break field trip and would be housed at an air base near Charleston in military accommodations. During the trip, cadets and chaperones would visit Ft. Sumter, Goose Creek Naval Base, and other military installations located near Charleston. The primary chaperones for the trip will be Lt. Commander Michael Cluver and Chief Petty Officer David Hultberg along with Mr. Jim Vaught and Mrs. Stephanie Gadberry, parents of cadets. The cadets and chaperones will be transported to Charleston, South Carolina via two Bloomfield School District mini-buses with the costs of the fuel for the trip to be shared among the participants of the trip. Students would pay for the cost of meals during the trip. This field trip was approved by a 7-0 vote.
15. Christian Service Club Receives Donation. It was recommended the Board approve an anonymous donation of three hundred dollars ($300) to the Bloomfield Jr.-Sr. High School Christian Service Club. (See Attached) Steve Dowden made motion to approve the donation. Mr. Sichting explained that Bloomfield School District Board of School Trustees has adopted policies for implementation for the school district which includes Policy #9510 requiring all gifts, bequests, or donations to be approved by the Board. Mr. Sichting said the donation would be deposited in the Bloomfield Jr.-Sr. High School Extra-Curricular Account. The Bloomfield School District Board of School Trustees, administration, and staff would like to thank the generosity of the anonymous donor. The funds will be used to assist the Christian Service Club in carrying out goal and mission. The donation was approved by a 7-0 vote.
16. Class Sizes Outside Limits of Board Policy #2705 Approved. It was recommended that the Board approve class size lists for the second semester of the 2014-2015 school year at Bloomfield Jr.-Sr. High School. (See Attached) Sandy Parkes moved to approve the lists as presented. Matt Miller seconded the motion. Superintendent Sichting reminded board members of a policy they adopted in May of 2000 establishing the class sizes for grades K through 6 and for Math, Science, Social Studies, and English at the secondary level. He said in March of 2002, the Board added a requirement that classes in the above areas outside the class size range required board approval before being allowed to continue. The list was approved by a 7-0 vote.
17. Bloomfield Jr/Sr High School Extra-Curricular Donations in Memory of Marcus "Red" Oliphant Highlighted. Mr. Dean provided information to board members on the total amount of donations that had been received in memory of Marcus "Red" Oliphant at the Jr/Sr High School.
Mr. Dean shared his appreciation to the Oliphant family and many donors for their generosity for the donations in memory of Colonel Marcus "Red" Oliphant.
18. Board Approves Financial and Payroll Consulting. It was recommended the Board approve up to a maximum of 80 hours of consulting at a rate of $25 per hour for Mrs. Sue Pritts during the 2015 and/or 2016. (See Attached) Matt Miller made a motion to approve the recommendation. Sandy Parkes seconded the motion, which passed by a 7-0 vote. Mr. Sichting explained the need for this consulting position. He said Bloomfield School District was scheduled for an audit with the Indiana Department of Local Government Finance in the spring of 2016. The audit period would consist of fiscal years 2014 and 2015. The last audit period consisted of fiscal years 2012 and 2013. Treasurer Stacey Robinette transitioned into her current position one month prior to the end of fiscal year 2013. Mrs. Robinette was treasurer when the last audit was conducted in the spring of 2014. However, most of the documents prepared for the audit for fiscal year 2012 and 2013 were prepared previously by Mrs. Sue Pritts prior to her retirement. He said the hours and pay rate approved would allow Mrs. Pritts to assist Mrs. Robinette in preparing the documents needed for the 2014 and 2015 audit of Bloomfield School District.
19. Board Denies Hearing Bloomfield Jr/Sr High School Student Prom Guest Appeal. Superintendent Sichting explained that Bloomfield School District had in place rules for who can and cannot attend prom. He said Miss Clayton had asked Mr. Dean to approve a young man who did not meet the criteria of being allowed to attend Bloomfield's Prom and Mr. Dean had denied her request. Miss Clayton then made an appeal to Mr. Sichting and he also denied her request. Mr. Sichting told board members that the question the board needed to vote on was whether they choose to hear Miss Clayton's appeal or not. Steve Dowden asked if the denial was based on a specific policy. He said the specific reasons that someone can be denied are listed in the student handbook which was approved by the Board. Mr. Sichting answered that his job was to keep all Bloomfield students safe and he had some concerns about allowing Miss Clayton's date to attend prom. Keven McIntosh asked what the specific reasons for denying the date from attending. Mr. Sichting said he couldn't give the reason at this time because he did not want to prejudice the board before they voted on whether to hear the appeal or not. Steve Dowden stated that he felt he did not have enough information to support or not support the decision to deny the young man attendance to the prom and made a motion to hear Miss Samantha Clayton's appeal in executive session. Keven McIntosh seconded the motion. The motion was defeated by a 3-4 vote. Steve Dowden, Keven McIntosh and Steve Jones voted in favor of the motion. Sandy Parkes, John Combs, Matt Miller and Dwayne Hostetter voted against the motion.
20. Audit of Outdoor Physical Education Project Budget. Mr. Sichting gave board members along with those community members present results of an audit of the Outdoor Physical Education facility expenses.
21. Progress Report on the Outdoor Athletic Facility Project. Superintendent Sichting updated board members on the progress at the Outdoor Athletic Facility Project.
22. Information on Indiana Department of Transportation Highway 231 South Project Requirements. Mr. Dan Sichting shared information on requirements of the Indiana Department of Transportation on Highway 231 South entrance to the new Outdoor Physical Education Project.
23. Information on School Funding Proposals for the Indiana General Assembly 2015 Legislative Session. Superintendent Sichting told board members that Governor Pence had come out with his education agenda in which he spoke about increasing funds to public schools by two hundred million dollars. Of that amount forty-one million would go to charter schools. Mr. Sichting stated that charter schools are also considered public schools. He said there is a large discrepancy between funds being provided to both schools. Mr. Sichting asked permission of the Board allowing him to write a letter to parents to explain to them the urgency of the funding situation and urge them to contact their legislators. No board member voiced their opposition to his sending out a letter to parents making them aware of school funding issues.
24. Bloomfield School District Bullying Panel Information. President Hostetter read the following statement to begin this agenda item on Bullying. President Hostetter read that Bloomfield School District takes reports of bullying very seriously and undertakes all efforts to investigate and respond to all allegations in accordance with the law to ensure all students are safe. Bloomfield School District has a bullying policy consistent with the law and procedures are in place to investigate all bullying allegations. Administrators and teachers must have detailed evidence to thoroughly investigate bullying allegations. Superintendent Sichting told board members and those present that he had secured a parent, a local lay minister and the Greene County juvenile probation officer to serve on the bullying panel. He said he was also looking for a mental health professional to serve on the panel as well. Mr. Sichting said Bloomfield Schools are moving forward with the bullying panel. Keven McIntosh asked what the panel would be expected to do. Mr. Sichting answered that first they would be asked to look at the law, the school policy, and the investigative procedures being used and to give feedback on what is being done well and what areas need improvement.
25. Comments and information from the public. Brian Walters of the American Legion Post #196 offered assistance from Legion members with the anti-bullying program at school. Mr. Walters also told board members that the flag on the east side of the school needed to be illuminated. Board members and Mr. Sichting thanked Mr. Walters for his comments. Former Bloomfield Elementary student Ashley Mitchell read a prepared statement put together by herself and her step father Mike Latimer concerning the culture at Bloomfield Schools and bullying. Ashley Mitchell's step grandfather Tim Latimer also spoke on the culture needing changed at Bloomfield Schools. Board members and Superintendent Sichting thanked them for their comments.
26. Adjournment. There being no further business John Combs moved to adjourn. Matt Miller seconded the motion. The meeting was then adjourned by a 7-0 vote.
BLOOMFIELD SCHOOL DISTRICT – BOARD OF SCHOOL TRUSTEES
Member Attest: Secretary Superintendent of Schools