Frankfort Community Consolidated School District 157C Board of Education met November 15
Frankfort Community Consolidated School District 157C Board of Education met November 15.
Here is the minutes as provided by the board:
The regular Frankfort School District 157-C Board of Education meeting of November 15, 2017 was called to order by Board President Gina Briese at 7:00 p.m. The roll call was taken and a quorum was present. The Board recited the Pledge of Allegiance.
There was no correspondence.
The Board approved the Open and Closed Session minutes of the regular meeting of October 18, 2017.
No one signed up to speak during the Public Forum portion of the meeting.
In honor of School Board Members’ Day, Superintendent Dr. Maura Zinni recognized the Board of Education members for all the hard work and dedication they show to Frankfort School District 157-C. She stated, “I have a team who present themselves as regular folks representing the students, parents and our community but they do so much behind the scenes to prepare. This is a volunteer position, not an easy position, but their representation as Board members has shown that when we have an opening for Board members we get a very good response. I’m honored to be part of this team of support, leadership and guidance.”
Chelsea Intermediate School Principal Dr. Sharon Paver-Nepote reported on the technology utilization with the 1:1 technology model (one computer for each student) at the fifth grade level. She reported that teachers in all grade levels are increasing the integration of technology throughout the academic day. Students are using their devices to create PowerPoints, collaborate and share ideas, record information, develop rubrics, word process, access work at home, practice math skills, read informational and fictional literature, develop newsletters, and create collaborative spaces such as Padlet, Blogs and online exchanges with classmates. The third and fourth grade teachers are using OneNote and Microsoft 365 to plan together and create curricular documents. She also reported that the Technology Coaches, Julie Cholly and Liz Hlotke, have been a tremendous support to the staff and students during this first year of implementation.
Hickory Creek Middle School Principal Will Seidelmann reported that Hickory Creek Middle School will be a featured school at the 2017 Raising Student Achievement Conference on December 4. Mr. Seidelmann will be sharing a presentation entitled, “Formula to Impact Student Achievement”. The presentation recognizes work of staff to enhance academic growth by students. Mr. Seidelmann stated, “We made growth by instructional delivery and maximizing time using the standards. Professional development allowed us to improve. Teachers always stayed above the mark and it is a team effort. They come to school ready to work and collaborate as a team. They understand the standards and build on them.”
Grand Prairie Elementary School Principal Eileen Nelson and Assistant Principal Kirsten Frankovich presented the school’s new video newsletter. Several staff members were the actors in the video, highlighting various teaching methods and terms used in the classroom. Mrs. Nelson stated, “The videos will be sent out to parents each month as a new way to communicate with them along with our regular monthly newsletters.” After viewing the video, Board President Gina Briese said, “What a great idea! Thank you.”
Director of Technology Jake Nelson reported that his team held the kick-off meeting to begin setting up registration for the 2018-2019 school year. He reported that feedback about past registration has been collected to improve the process.
Director of Special Services Jen Bajda reported on the special education survey for parents and guardians. The survey was implemented because the special education team wanted to make sure the district is doing a good job of helping parents understand the Individualized Education Program (IEP) process. She said that everything looks good and the survey information will continue to be monitored regularly.
Director of Curriculum & Instruction Janet McClarence discussed the encore offering for Chelsea Intermediate School grades 3-5 Spanish. She stated, “Last year we found the perfect teacher and met with Peg Bobber at Lincoln-Way High School to create a good curriculum. This program will dovetail as the students move to Hickory Creek Middle School and high school.” She also provided information on the successful STEM Fusion program at Hickory Creek and reported that the district is now looking to implement a similar program as a pilot at Chelsea for grades 3-5.
Director of Building & Grounds Rodney Davis reported that changes in his department over the past year have greatly improved efficiency. He also reported that a preventative maintenance program on HVAC equipment is working well. He stated, “We are in a better place than last year and pushing to do even better.”
Director of Human Resources Craig Schoppe reported that open enrollment began this month. During this time employees will be able to make changes to their insurance plan. The insurance committee and district office have provided the employees numerous insurance informational meetings to become better informed insurance consumers. Mr. Schoppe also reported that the annual health screenings for employees and spouses will be held this month and that 220 participants have already signed up.
The Board heard a report from Superintendent Dr. Maura Zinni on the Lincoln-Way Area Special Education District 843 Advisory Committee meeting of October 16, 2017 and the Governing Board meeting of October 24, 2017.
Band & Orchestra Booster President Cori Chojnacki presented an update to the Board. The organization has provided numerous opportunities for the 350 students participating in Band and Orchestra. These include $2,700 in scholarships this year, $5,700 of equipment for the schools, murals at Chelsea Intermediate, a pizza party at the end of summer band, a memorial donation, Illinois Music Education Association (IMEA) plaques, medals for veterans and refreshments for the Veterans Day concert, sponsoring a quartet for the December 5 Orchestra concert, a holiday breakfast and T-shirt contest. Dr. Zinni stated, “Thank you for all that you do and please pass that along to your booster group.”
In the Superintendent’s report, Dr. Maura Zinni provided information on the Illinois State Report Card results. She reported that as a district, achievement results improved. Last year 62.9 percent of district students met or exceeded the state standards. This year, 69.1 percent reached this benchmark. Last year the district ranked 28th in the state for English Language Arts (ELA) and moved up two notches to 26th this year. Math results showed significant gains over all, ranking 34th last year and this year moving up to 16th in the state. Students in grades 6- 8 made remarkable progress this year, increasing from 68 percent to 73.5 percent of students meeting or exceeding standards for math and ELA combined. Dr. Zinni stated, “We are very proud to be compared to high achieving districts. Overall these are awesome results and we should all be proud of the work teachers do every day.” Board President Gina Briese stated, “This is an overall fantastic job. Congratulations to all of you and thank you for your work.” A full report on the test results can be found on the district website, www.fsd157c.org. Dr. Zinni also provided the Board with an enrollment report and asked them to save the date for the Education Foundation Casino Night to be held on March 2, 2018 at Odyssey Country Club.
Director of Business and Operational Services Kate Ambrosini provided the Board with the November 2017 Treasurer's Report and Graphs. The total fund balance reserves increased by $3,216,157 (from $49,447,031 to $52,663,507) primarily due to Will County tax receipts in excess of $4 million. Monthly revenue receipts totaled $5,443,400 and monthly expense disbursements totaled $2,227,243 primarily due to payroll of $1,523,820 and accounts payable of $703,423.
There were four Freedom of Information requests and they were responded to in a timely manner.
In discussion, Director of Business and Operational Services, Kate Ambrosini provided the Board with an update on the tax appeals and the Frankfort Area Taxing Body Coalition.
The Board tabled the action to approve the purchase of PMA's financial reporting software package until its December meeting. The Board requested that Director of Business and Operational Services Kate Ambrosini provide a presentation on the software features and samples of charts and graphs it can produce.
The Board took action to approve the employment of Candace Juricek as a full-time Long-Term Substitute Early Childhood Teacher at Grand Prairie Elementary School at the daily long-term substitute rate of $100 for the first 10 consecutive days and $262.04 for the remaining days with a start date of December 4, 2017 and will tentatively end March 12, 2018 or until the assignment ends, contingent upon the receipt and evaluation of employment documentation required by District 157-C and the Illinois State Board of Education.
The Board took action to approve the employment of Angela Vander Kooi as a full-time Long-Term Substitute Second Grade Teacher at Grand Prairie Elementary School at the daily long-term substitute rate of $100 for the first 10 consecutive days and $262.04 for the remaining days with a start date of December 15, 2017 and will tentatively end April 5, 2018 or until the assignment ends, contingent upon the receipt and evaluation of employment documentation required by District 157-C and the Illinois State Board of Education.
The Board took action to approve the employment of Megan Stark as a full-time Eighth Grade Paraprofessional at Hickory Creek Middle School (BA) at an hourly rate of $12.95, contingent upon the receipt and evaluation of employment documentation required by District 157-C and the Illinois State Board of Education.
The Board took action to approve the employment of Rachel Ray as a full-time Long-Term Substitute Sixth Grade Teacher at Hickory Creek Middle School at a daily rate of $100 for the first 10 consecutive days and $262.04 for the remaining days with a start date of November 21, 2017 and will tentatively end March 5, 2018 or until the assignment ends, contingent upon the receipt and evaluation of employment documentation required by District 157-C and the Illinois State Board of Education.
The Board took action to approve the employment of Brandon Egan as a Stipend Assistant Wrestling Coach at Hickory Creek Middle School for a stipend of $2,391.00, contingent upon the receipt and evaluation of employment documentation required by District 157-C and the Illinois State Board of Education.
The Board took action to approve the Spanish Club for fourth and fifth grade students at Chelsea Intermediate School. There will be two sessions, one meeting on Tuesdays and one meeting on Thursdays. The students will meet for 55 minutes. The sessions would begin the week of January 16, 2018 and conclude the week of May 17, 2018. The stipend for the Spanish Club would be $880.00 with minimum participation of 10 students and a maximum of 20. Estimated cost of supplies to run the activity is $51.00 for a total amount of $931.00.
The Board took action to approve the payment of bills for October as presented.
The Board went into Closed Session at 8:18 p.m. to discuss appointment, employment compensation, discipline, performance and/or dismissal of specific employees; student discipline; student residency; student issue; reclassification of employees; and pending litigation.
The Board returned to Open Session at 9:03 p.m.
In discussion, Director of Business and Operational Services, Kate Ambrosini presented the Tentative Property Tax Levy for 2017 and outlined potential abatement scenarios. It is the recommendation of the Administration that the Board approve the Tentative Certificate of Tax Levy, Truth in Taxation Resolution and the Certification for the 2017 tentative tax levy, reflecting total anticipated levy needs of $28,735,810 levy for operating/capped funds and a $4,145,292 levy for non-operating/non-capped (debt service) funds. It is also recommended that the Board consider and approve incorporating a debt service abatement from existing fund balance reserves (recommended at $750,000 to $1,100,000, and to be reviewed, finalized and approved in December) that would allow the overall levy to grow between 3.96% and 2.82% based on current estimates. Furthermore, that the Board call/order a Public Hearing on the Tax Levy to be held on December 20, 2017, at approximately 7:05 p.m. in the Administrative Office Board Room and direct the Administration to publish notice of said public hearing and take any other actions as required by the Truth in Taxation Act and relevant State laws, acknowledge that we are not technically required to comply with said Act this year, due to the fact that the District’s tax capped levy request for 2017 will not be increasing over last year's 2016 capped levy extension by more than 5%. During the discussion, the Board requested increased abatement scenarios of $1.25M and $1.5M for consideration at the December meeting.
The Board took action to approve the resolution as presented for the tentative 2017 tax levy and set the date, time and place for the levy hearing as December 20, 2017, 7:05 p.m. in the Board Room and directed the
Administration to post a notice for this public hearing.
The Board adjourned the Regular meeting at 9:35 p.m.
The next regular District 157-C Board of Education meeting will be held on December 20, 2017 at 7:00 p.m. at Grand Prairie Elementary School, 10480 West Nebraska Street, in Frankfort, Illinois.