MINUTES OF REGULAR MEETING OF SCHOOL BOARD
OF BLOOMFIELD SCHOOL DISTRICT
January 29, 2009
The Board of School Trustees of the Bloomfield School District, of Greene County, Indiana, met in regular session on January 29, 2009, 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, Doug Frye, Keith Hanauer, Marvin Helms, and Dwayne Hostetter, Sandy May was absent. President Helms called the meeting to order at approximately 7:10 p.m. The following order of business was transacted with the President presiding:
1. Recognitions. Elementary principal Mary Jane Vandeventer praised the elementary staff for their efforts on the mid year assessment, announced upcoming professional development activities for staff and shared that she would be continuing to look at the Full Day Kindergarten program. Jr/Sr High School principal David Dean's recognitions included teachers Lori Burch and Julie Evans for their presentation on Team Teaching to other staff members, stated that the Jr/Sr High School Improvement Committee had began meeting and working towards school accreditations, and announced that Homecoming would be held on Saturday night. Athletic director Ms. Abernathy thanked the Bigger Booster Club, teachers who participated and board members who helped with Donkey Basketball recently. Superintendent Sichting presented Mr. Ralph Raper with a plaque of thanks for his serving the district as jr/sr high school interim assistant principal from the Fall of 2008 until the first month of 2009. A suggestion was made to move agenda items 11. D and 11. E to be heard immediately following agenda item 5. A Treasurer's Report. The Board by consensus agreed to this modification of the agenda order.
2. Approval of Minutes, The Board had been provided with minutes of the regular school board meeting held on December 29, 2008, which had been prepared by corporation recording secretary Kelli Vandeventer. Dwayne Hostetter moved to approve the minutes of the December 29, 2008 regular board meeting beginning with the sentence: "The Board of School Trustees of the Bloomfield School District, of Greene County, Indiana, met in regular session on December 29, 2008, in the jr/sr high school conference room in Bloomfield Junior/Senior High School, 501 West Spring Street, Bloomfield, Indiana" and ending with the sentence: "The meeting was then adjourned by a 7-0 vote." Steve Dowden seconded the motion, which passed by a 6-0 vote.
3. Treasurer's Report. The Board had been provided with the Treasurer's Report, prepared by corporation treasurer Sue Pritts. Steve Dowden moved to approve the December 31, 2008 Appropriation Report, beginning with Fund 0100 Program 11050.00 and object 110.00 for Full Day Kindergarten Services through Fund 0600 Program 60100.00 and Object 910 for Special Education Preschool Fund Transfers and also the December 31, 2008 claims docket beginning with voucher number 1262 to Bloomfield State Bank and ending with voucher number 80 to Witham Toxicology Lab. Keith Hanauer seconded the motion, which passed by a 6-0 vote.
4. Greene County MAPP Presentation. Lauren Rapoki along with Bloomfield Elementary School teachers presented a power point presentation to the Board of School Trustees with information concerning the Math grant and efforts to improve classroom teaching of math principles at Bloomfield Elementary School and Bloomfield Jr/Sr High School,
5. Board Hears More Information on Outdoor Athletic Facilities. Bud Erny of Erny and Associates provided the board with information on school property located across highway 54 and its possibilities for use as athletic facilities. Mr. Erny also presented drawings for possible athletic facilities at that location.
6. Board Approves Transfer of Appropriations in 2008 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 2008 budget. (See Attached) Steve Dowden moved to approve the report. Keith Hanauer seconded the motion, which passed by a 6-0 vote.
7. DOE 54 Report for January 2009. Superintendent Sichting provided the board with the DOE 54 Report for January 15, 2009. (See Attached) He explained this report is the first one for Bloomfield School District with the state of Indiana assuming full funding of the General Fund. The January 54 DPI 54 Report does not have current data from Special Education counts for each school district taken in December, 2008. As a result of the December, 2008 count, Bloomfield School District will receive less money than reported on the January 2009 DPI 54 Report. The January DPI 54 Report indicates a January payment of $542,142. The report also indicates Bloomfield School District will receive $6,596,606 in tuition support payments during the calendar year of 2009. In 2008, Bloomfield School District received $6,322,688 in tuition support payments and local property tax receipts. The December 1st Special Education count will reduce the 2009 tuition support payment to $6,520,130. After the December 1 counts are accounted for the monthly DPI tuition support payment will reflect an adjustment and will lower proportionately. Additionally, state revenue receipts have fell below projections. It is possible the tuition support revenue will be cut during the last quarter of the 2009 calendar year.
8. Board Grants Authority to Advertise for 2009 Temporary Loan. It was recommended the Board authorize the Superintendent to advertise for a temporary loan if needed for the 2009 Bloomfield School District budget. (See Attached) The Superintendent explained that Counties within the state of Indiana are currently going through an annual adjustment process of increasing property values referred to as "trending". As of January 29, 2009, the assessed valuation for Bloomfield School District for the 2009 budget had yet to be certified by the Indiana Department of Local Government Finance. As a result, the chance of delayed tax bills and no property tax revenue to meet the July, 2009 debt obligations is very real Property tax levies fund the Bus Replacement Fund, Capital Projects Fund, Debt Service Fund, Retirement/Pension Debt Service Fund, and Transportation Fund. Bloomfield School District will once again attempt to meet the July Service Obligations through temporary intrafund transfers. However, if the current financial crisis worsens within the United States it might become necessary for Bloomfield School District to pursue a temporary operating loan. Dwayne Hostetter moved to approve the recommendation. John Combs seconded the motion, which passed by a 6-0 vote.
9. Board Adopts Expenditure Goals Consistent with I.C. 21-10-3-4 for 2009 Budget.
It was recommended the Board adopt expenditure goals as mandated by I.C. 21-10-3-4. Superintendent Sichting said that the Indiana General Assembly passed legislation in HEA 1006 establishing I.C. 21-10-3-4 mandating the establishment of these expenditure goals unique to every school corporation. Superintendent Sichting explained that P.L. 191-2006 (HEA 1006) states the following: "Beginning with the 2007-2008 school year, each governing body establish goals for each category of expenditures set forth in section 4 of this chapter that will increase the school corporation's allocation of taxpayer resources directly to student instruction and learning, in light of the unique circumstances present in the school corporation." The expenditure goals for the Bloomfield School District will be as follows:
1. Encouraging non-certified staff and certified staff to utilize direct deposit for payrolls.
2. Reducing long-term debt and debt service levies in the future.
3. Utilize cooperative purchasing agreements and consortiums to reduce costs.
There are several reasons why the percentages between expenditures for student instruction and expenditures for other categories cannot change to a great degree including:
1. Increases in the student instructional expenditure categories are not possible due to the unique circumstances of a large percentage of teaching staff being veteran teachers. (52% of certified
teaching staff are at the top of the scale) As veteran teachers retire, the openings are filled by younger people with less experience with lower teaching salaries.
2. Increases in the student instructional expenditure categories are not possible due to the unique circumstances of Bloomfield School District decreasing in enrollment from 2006-2007 to 20082009 and the state no longer provides a minimum guaranteed increase in funding,
- Increases in the student instructional expenditure categories are not possible due to the unique circumstance of Bloomfield School District having an older building requiring large capital outlays for maintenance and utilities and the need for repairing and renovating school facilities will increase the other expenditure categories (Debt Service Fund and Capital Projects Fund) at a faster rate that the student instructional expenditure (General Fund) categories.
4. Increases in the student instructional expenditure categories are not possible due to the long term debt obligations of Bloomfield School District.
5. Increases in the student instructional expenditure categories are not possible due to the long term transportation contracts negotiated with contracted school bus drivers in 2006. The long term transportation contracts will not expire until 2013.
6. Increases in the student instructional expenditure categories are not possible due to increasing costs of overhead costs due to utilities payment obligations.
10. Board Approves 2009 ISTEP+ Remediation Program. It was recommended the Board approve the 2009 ISTEP+ Remediation Program. Mr. Sichting explained that ISTEP+ Remediation previously was scheduled during the summer. However, the change in the ISTEP testing schedule from fall to spring makes it necessary to change the ISTEP Remediation Program schedule from summer to spring. Mr. Sichting said that as a result, Bloomfield School District will hold a remediation program for grades 3-8 beginning on Tuesday, February 3, 2009 and ending on Wednesday, April 15, 2009. He said remediation sessions would occur twice weekly on Tuesday and Wednesday nights from 3:10 P.M. to 4:30P.M. Transportation would be provided at the conclusion of the remediation session to students who don't walk to school. The cost of the remediation program would be paid out of the Remediation grant proceeds. Dwayne Hostetter made a motion to approve the ISTEP+ Remediation Program per the recommendation. Steve Dowden seconded the motion, which passed by a 6-0 vote.
11. 2008-2009 ECA Recommendation Approved. Board members were provided with an ECA recommendation for the 2008-2009 school year from Miss Abernathy. (See Attached) Superintendent Sichting included his support of the recommendation. Recommended was Tyler Evans to be a Volunteer Assistant Baseball coach, Keith Hanauer made a motion to approve the recommendation. John Combs seconded the motion, which passed by a 6-0 vote.
12. Authority Granted for Hiring of 2009 Remediation Staff. It was recommended the Board authorize Superintendent Dan Sichting to hire employees to fill positions to conduct the 2009 ISTEP+ Spring Remediation Program. Superintendent Sichting explained that the 2009 ISTEP+ Testing Schedule has a spring testing window in March and April. He said that as a result, it was necessary for Bloomfield School District to reschedule student remediation from summer to spring. Earlier, the Bloomfield School District Board of School Trustees approved the 2009 Spring ISTEP+ Remediation Program. The Remediation Program will run from Tuesday, February 10, 2009 through Wednesday, April 22, 2009. Remediation instructional costs will be paid out of the Remediation grant proceeds. Mr. Sichting explained that in approving this request the Board would be granting the authority for him to fill the ISTEP+ Remediation positions. A formal recommendation will be made for the board to approve the employees at the February board meeting. Steve Dowden moved to approve the recommendation, Keith Hanauer seconded the motion, which passed by a 6-0 vote.
13. NJROTC Overnight Field Trip Approved. It was recommended the Board approve an overnight field trip for the Bloomfield Jr/Sr High School NJROTC Unit to Pike High School in Indianapolis, Indiana on Friday, February 13, 2009. (See Attached) The recommendation also asked for approval to cover any rescheduled date due to weather related cancellations. Dwayne Hostetter moved to approve the recommendation. Keith Hanauer seconded the motion, which passed by a 6-0 vote.
14. Board Approves NJROTC Overnight and Out-of-State Field Trip. It was recommended the Board approve an overnight and out-of-state field trip for the Bloomfield Jr/Sr High School NJROTC Unit to Grove City, Ohio on Friday, March 13, 2009 and Saturday, March 14, 2009. (See Attached) The request also included approving covering any rescheduled date due to weather related cancellations. Keith Hanauer made a motion to approve the recommendation. Steve Dowden seconded the motion, which passed by a 6-0 vote.
15. 2008 ISTEP+ Test Results for Bloomfield Elementary and Bloomfield Jr/Sr
High School. Elementary principal Mary Jane Vandeventer and jr/sr high school principal David Dean gave ISTEP+ test results for their buildings along with their plans to improve those scores. (See Attached)
16. Board Policy Revisions Second Readings and Adoptions. Second reading was held on
fourteen (14) school board policies. #1231 Nondiscrimination and Access to Educational Opportunity, #2221 Graduation Requirements, #2260 Equal Educational Opportunity, #2262,1 School Age Child Care Program - Reasonable Care Standards, #2262.2 Regulations for School Age Child Care Program, #2330 Homework, #2340 Field and Other District - Sponsored Trips, #2411 Guidance and Counseling, #2412 Homebound Instruction, #2432 Complimentary Tickets, #2460.1 Educational Surrogate Parent, #2510 Adoption of Textbooks, #2610.1 Right to Inspect Certain Instructional Materials, and #2705 Class Size were presented to the Board for second reading and adoption. (See Attached) Steve Dowden moved to approve the revisions as presented. Dwayne Hostetter seconded the motion, which passed by a 6-0 vote.
17. Memorandum of Understanding for the Out-Of-School Suspension Program at Greene Academy Approved. Superintendent Sichting explained the Bloomfield School District's participation in the Greene County Out-Of-School Suspension program began on Tuesday, January 20, 2009. He said students and parents are required to participate in the Program and if they fail to do so they will be required to appear before the Honorable Erik C. Allen, Judge in Greene Circuit Court. Mr. Sichting recommended approval of the Memorandum of Understanding for the Out-Of-School Suspension Program at Greene Academy as provided. (See Attached) Steve Dowden made a motion to approve the . recommendation. Dwayne Hostetter seconded the motion, which passed by a 6-0 vote.
18. NJROTC Annual Inspection Announced. It was announced the Bloomfield JrlSr High School NJROTC Unit will hold the annual inspection in the Glover Gym from 9:00 a.m. until 11:00 a.m. on Wednesday, February 4, 2009.
19. Information on Special Education Non-Compliance Issues. Superintendent Sichting
told the Board that on December 12, 2008, he had received notification from the Indiana Department of Education that Bloomfield School District was in Non-Compliance on compliance indicators 9, 10, 11, 12 & 13. (See Attached) Superintendent Sichting explained that these indicators pertained to special education data. He said that some of the problems have to do with meeting deadlines that involve conferences with parents who do not cooperate within the timeline the Department of Education set. Mr. Sichting assured the Board that good progress is being made on all non-compliance issues.
20. Information on Legislative Bills Involving School Consolidation. Superintendent
Sichting provided board members with information on proposed legislative bills SB 502 and SB 521 concerning school consolidation in Indiana. (See Attached) He said John Waterman had notified him that SB 502 that stated all Indiana schools under 2000 enrollment had to consolidate had died in committee hearing. He explained that SB 521 states that any Indiana school with an enrollment of 500 or less must consolidate and any between 501-1000 have to meet certain criteria or they too must consolidate. Mr. Sichting stated Bloomfield School District enrollment is currently 1045.
21. Board Hears Impact of Circuit Breaker on Bloomfield School District Budget.
Mr. Sichting said that Circuit Breaker Credits is a new budget issue that came into effect this year. He provided members with the latest financial impact that had been prepared by Legislative Services Agency. (See Attached) Mr. Sichting shared that he felt the loss of revenue in 2009 will be greater for Bloomfield
School District than had been estimated. He continued that the loss of revenue should be less in the future due to the high school building being paid for. He said other taxing districts could do some things that could impact our district negatively in terms of circuit breaker.
22. Emergency School Closing Procedures for 2008-2009 Announced. Board members
and members of the media were provided with Emergency School Closing Procedures for the 2008-2009 school year. (See Attached.)
23. Public Comments. John Mensch shared information about businesses coming to West Gate near Crane. He commented he was glad to see good ISTEP+ scores which is one thing parents moving into Greene County look at. Mr. Mensch said he is promoting housing within Bloomfield which would be a plus for the community and our district.
24. Adjournment. There being no further business Dwayne Hostetter moved to adjourn. Doug Frye seconded the motion. The meeting was then adjourned by a 6-0 vote.