MINUTES OF REGULAR MEETING OF SCHOOL BOARD
OF BLOOMFIELD SCHOOL DISTRICT
October 30, 2008
The Board of School Trustees of the Bloomfield School District, of Greene County, Indiana, met in regular session on October 30, 2008, 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, Dwayne Hostetter and Sandra May. President Helms called the meeting to order at approximately 7:00 p.m. The following order of business was transacted with the President presiding:
- 1. Recognitions. Ms. Vandeventer recognized teachers that were awarded the Learn and Serve Grant. She announced that elementary teachers had conducted over 300 parent teacher conferences recently. Ms. Vandeventer shared information about acuity and wireless testing, and announced that at the next PTO meeting to be held on November 18th Dr. Jackson is scheduled to speak on students making positive choices. She also stated that again this year the elementary would be publishing Christmas cards and selling them. This project happens because of the efforts of at-risk counselor Susan Street. Miss Abernathy gave some highlights of the athletic department including athletes making all conference teams. Julie Riggins, Sarah Miller, Avery Frederick, and Paige Warren made the cross country all conference team for the girls. Andy Cochrane made cross country all SWIAC team for the boys. In volleyball Miss Abernathy recognized Shelby Gott and Leairra Thompson and making all conference SWIAC team for tennis were Willy Scott, Derek Corn, Holden Hamm, and Austin Schulte. Miss Abernathy shared that Derek Corn made the Herald Times all area team and Mitch Hobson made academic all state. Also, she announced that Julie Riggins qualified for the semi state in cross country. In Mrs. Royal’s absence, Superintendent Sichting recognized Kyle von Almen, Loren Hadley, and Nancy Hudson for spearheading a mock Presidential election for the student body and staff. Mrs. Royal also wanted to recognize Miss Abernathy for a successful hosting of the volleyball sectional. Mr. Sichting added that Miss Abernathy did a great job with the steak sandwich stand at the Apple Festival. Mrs. Royal’s recognitions also included Bloomfield staff and students on a recent dodge ball tournament and teachers who held parent conferences recently. Mr. Sichting recognized the current school board for being named an Outstanding Board at a recent regional meeting of the Indiana School Boards Association. Marvin Helms gave credit to Mr. Sichting for setting up the new parent alert system at school. He said he had received several phone calls and positive comments concerning the new system.
2. Approval of Minutes. The Board had been provided with minutes of the regular school board meeting held on September 25, 2008, which had been prepared by corporation recording secretary Kelli Vandeventer. Dwayne Hostetter moved to approve the minutes of the September 25, 2008 board meeting as provided beginning with the sentence: "The Board of School Trustees of the Bloomfield School District, of Greene County, Indiana, met in regular session on September 25, 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 6-0 vote.” John Combs seconded the motion, which passed by a 6-0-1 vote. Steve Dowden abstained from voting because he was not in attendance at the September 25, 2008 board meeting. Sandy May then made a motion to approve the minutes of the October 1, 2008 board meeting as provided beginning with the sentence: “The Board of School Trustees of the Bloomfield School District, of Greene County, Indiana, met in special session on October 1, 2008, at 7:00 p.m. in the jr/sr high school conference 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 vote, which passed by a 7-0 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 September 30, 2008 Appropriation Report, beginning with Fund 0100 Program 11100 and object 110 for Full Day Kindergarten Services through Fund 0600 Program 60100 and Object 910 for Special Education Preschool Fund Transfers. Mr. Dowden’s motion also included approving the October 2008 claim docket beginning with voucher number 917 to Bloomfield State Bank and ending with voucher number 1029 to Diane Wilson. Sandy May seconded the motion, which passed by a 7-0 vote.
4. Board Approves Cell Phone Stipend for Superintendent. Superintendent Sichting asked the Board to approve a cell phone stipend for the Superintendent in the amount of $400 per year. Keith Hanauer moved to approve the request. Sandy May seconded the motion. Mr. Sichting explained that the IRS ruled cell phones are taxable income and as a result, a technology fee allowing the Superintendent to monitor email while attending meetings is being given as a stipend. He told board members the cell phone stipend is taxable. The request was approved by a 7-0 vote.
5. DOE 54 Report for October 15, 2008. Superintendent Sichting provided the board with the DOE 54 Report for October 15, 2008. (See Attached) He said the DOE recently announced reductions in the monthly DPI 54 payments for 27 school corporations in the state of Indiana. He said the reduction was due to school district’s eclipsing the statutory limit for Assessed Valuation in the state of Indiana. Mr. Sichting continued that at this point Bloomfield School District’s monthly tuition support payment remains the same, but as more corporations report a 2008 Assessed Valuation the monthly tuition support payment will be reduced accordingly if and when the state’s statutory limit on Assessed Valuation is eclipsed.
6. Information on Title I Grant Funds Allocation. Superintendent Sichting told board members he had recently received notification of Title I Funds Allocation for the 2008-2009 school year. He said Bloomfield School District is projected to receive $272,966.86 of Title I funding, which equates to an approximate $2,000 funding increase from the previous year. (See Attached)
7. Maternity Leave Approved. Bloomfield Elementary Special Education teacher, Erica Pemberton, requested the Board grant her a maternity leave on or about November 13, 2008 until on or about January 5, 2009. Superintendent Sichting recommended approval. (See Attached) Steve Dowden made a motion to approve the maternity leave for Mrs. Pemberton. Keith Hanauer seconded the motion, which passed by a 7-0 vote.
8. NJROTC Lt. Ostergren Retires. Lt. Clayton Ostergren submitted his letter of retirement resignation effective June 30, 2009. Keith Hanauer moved to accept the retirement resignation. Sandy May seconded the motion, which passed by a 7-0 vote. The Board wished Lt. Ostergren success in his retirement.
9. 2008-2009 ECA Recommendations Approved. Board members were provided with ECA recommendations for the 2008-2009 school year from Mrs. Royal, Ms. Vandeventer and /or Miss Abernathy. (See Attached) Superintendent Sichting included his support of these recommendations. Recommended were Bill McIntosh, Dr. Owen Batterton, and Kevin McIntosh to be Volunteer coaches for Girl’s 5th & 6th Grade Basketball, Brad Secrest to work as High School Musical/Play Sets and Props, David Wade to do High School Musical/Play Choreography, Nancy Hudson as Business Professionals of America Sponsor, Sharon Sparks as Speech Team Sponsor, Connie Carmichael as Elementary Cheerleader Sponsor, and Teana Doane as a Volunteer Elementary Cheerleader Sponsor. Sandy May made a motion to approve the recommendations. Steve Dowden seconded the motion, which passed by a 7-0 vote.
10. Cafeteria II Worker Resigns. It was recommended the Board approve the resignation of Mrs. Sharon Warrick as a Cafeteria II employee effective October 17, 2008. (See Attached) Dwayne Hostetter made a motion to accept the resignation. Keith Hanauer seconded the motion, which passed by a 7-0 vote. Mr. Sichting wished her best of luck in the future.
11. Indiana Advocacy Movement Summit (Overnight) Field Trip Approved. It was recommended the Board approve an overnight field trip for four students to the Indiana Advocacy Movement Summit on November 8, 2008. (See Attached) Sandy May made a motion to approve the field trip. John Combs seconded the motion. Superintendent Sichting explained that Mrs. Joni Godsey would be chaperoning the students. Mrs. Godsey is a social worker funded by the Federal Alcohol Grant. He said that the summit is to be held at the Jameson Camp in Indianapolis.
12. Board Authorizes Superintendent to Pursue Tennis Courts & Elementary Playground Projects. It was recommended the Board approve allowing Superintendent Sichting to pursue a project to add tennis courts and a storage facility for Bloomfield School District. Sandy May moved to approve the recommendation. Keith Hanauer seconded the motion. Superintendent Sichting explained the Board had met in a work session earlier in the school year to explore possibilities of adding tennis courts and an additional storage facility for Bloomfield School District. He explained that adding tennis courts would cut down on the 3rd through 6th grade elementary student playground area and a storage building would have to be removed to accommodate the added courts. Bud Erny of Erny & Associates was in attendance and provided project information and also answered questions about the proposed tennis courts and room needed to add them. Elementary principal Mary Jane Vandeventer spoke as an advocate of elementary students and what would be needed for a new elementary playground. Ms. Vandeventer stressed that 300 – 350 elementary students use that playground area each day and that play is a vital part of child development. She also stated she felt Bloomfield needs a soccer field. Ms. Vandeventer provided information for board members listing her views and concerns. After much discussion, Sandy May amended her original motion to give authority to Mr. Sichting to pursue and investigate further the tennis courts project, elementary playground renovation, as well as a storage facility. Keith Hanauer seconded the amended motion, which passed by a 6-1 vote. Keith Hanauer cast the nay vote.
13. Board Policy By-Law Revisions, First Reading Held. First reading was held on revisions to seven (7) school board policies contained in the By-Law section. #0110 Official Description, #0120 Powers and Philosophy, #0130 Functions, #0140 Membership, #0150 Organization, #0160 Meetings, and #0170 Duties were presented to the Board for first reading. These policies will be brought back to a later meeting for approval.
14. Board Executes Guaranteed Energy Savings Contract Warranty Notification. It was recommended the board execute warranty notification concerning the Guaranteed Energy Savings Contract with Performance Services effective September 15, 2008. (See Attached) Sandy May moved to approve the recommendation. Steve Dowden seconded the motion, which passed by a 7-0 vote.
15. SchoolReach Parent Alert System Information. Superintendent Sichting said that a recent power outage caused the new parent alert system to be used sooner than expected. He said the system worked great. Mr. Sichting added there is still some fine tuning being done to the system including adding staff phone number and bus driver information, as well.
16. Final Report on Tornado Damage Repair. Mr. Sichting told board members the east boundary fence had been installed. He said this was the last repairs to be made from the February 2008 tornado damage.
17. Bloomfield Elementary Title I Eligibility Student Information. Elementary principal Mary Jane Vandeventer and Title I director Susie Goodman provided board members with information on how students are selected to participate in the Title I program and the number of students per grade level that are being served during this school year. (See Attached) The ladies asked to be allowed to come back with more data at the November board meeting.
18. Preliminary 2008 Graduation Rate Information. Superintendent Sichting told the board that the preliminary percentage is similar to that of last year. He provided the Board with graduation rate information obtained from the Indiana Department of Education website for Bloomfield Jr/Sr High School. Mr. Sichting stated that the percentage for Bloomfield is deflated and explained that was due to two students that were counted against the school which should not have been. He said one error was our mistake made in coding. One student moved out of state but was mistakenly coded at Bloomfield as being a drop out. The second student withdrew from Bloomfield and went to another school for two days, but that school did not officially enroll the student. That student then left that school to be home schooled. This error was made by the other school district, but after pleading with the department of education to not punish Bloomfield for a mistake on the other school district’s part, Mr. Sichting did not feel the state would be making a change in our favor. In essence the graduation rate for Bloomfield Jr/Sr High is not accurate.
19. Greene Academy To Open Soon. Superintendent Sichting told board members the portable classrooms that will house students attending Greene Academy should be operational by the end of November. He said an open house would be held in the near future.
20. Adjournment. There being no further business Steve Dowden moved to adjourn. Sandy May seconded the motion. The meeting was then adjourned by a 7-0 vote