Board Meeting Highlights - May 2016

Below are highlights from the District 39 Board of Education meeting on May 23, 2016.

Complete Packet

Board Committee Reports

  • Facility Development – Kimberly Alcantara reported – Received an update on water testing and all six schools tested 0% lead. The MEC test showed trace amounts at 2.8 parts per billion (ppb), likely attributable to a valve that is being replaced, and the MEC will be retested. Noted that the amount detected at the MEC is less than 5 ppb allowable in bottled water. Also updated on Learning Commons in preparation for the work beginning June 13th at Harper and WJHS. Expected completion on August 15. D39 is at the beginning of a new life safety cycle, which means we are reviewing what projects qualify for life safety work. This will likely take through Fiscal Year 17 when a new plan will be submitted to ISBE. Technology update included cabling and electrical work in the buildings. Next meeting is June 16 at 8:00 am.
  • Insurance Advisory – Mark Steen reported – Committee reviewed dental, life, and long-term disability polices as well as the renewal of third party administrator, and no plan changes were discussed. Reviewed Employee Assistance Plan and it's many uses; for example, it can be used to find range of services, such as elder care for employees' aging family members. Discussed continuing to improve delivery of wellness screening programs with more early morning times. Reviewed medical insurance premium renewal – the original quote was an increase of over 11%; discussed plans to reduce this premium increase. Open enrollment is at end of school year.
  • WCSEA – Tracy Kearney reported – The committee met May 24. The Fiscal17 tentative budget was adopted and a public hearing date was approved. Meeting dates for Fiscal 17 were also approved.
  • School Finance – John Flanagin reported – Performance contracting was discussed, which is a concept to identify system improvements that create sufficient energy savings to pay for the upgrades after a defined period of time. Discussed the Fiscal 17 tentative budget. Reviewed a resolution for transferring $1.5 million from the Operations and Maintenance Fund to Capital Projects; this is designed to segregate non-recurring capital costs from the Operations and Maintenance budget.

Legislative Update - Kimberly Alcantara

Still waiting for movement in Springfield. Some anticipate that a new K-12 education budget proposal may be soon emerging, which would acknowledge that the current school funding formula is not adequate and would suspend use of the formula. Replacement formulas are being discussed.


Written Communications

Announcements from the Superintendent

  • Student and Staff Recognition – Each year at this time is teacher appreciation week at our schools filled with generous PTO/A support for our staff. We are grateful for our excellent teachers and support staff, and for the generosity of the PTA/Os. Reflections, the annual gathering honoring retirees and the longevity of our staff, was on May 11th at Michigan Shores. We honored 22 five-year employees, 23 fifteen-year employees, 5 twenty-five year employees, and 27 retirees. Michigan Shores was a beautiful venue for this event. We had 217 staff members attend this celebration.
  • Science teacher Ms. Eakley presented some of the 25 JV and 15 Varsity students who competed in Science Olympiad. The Varsity team earned first place at regionals and finished 9th among 46 teams in state competition.
  • Mrs. Jackson recognized students who participated in Math Counts and Math League. The Math Counts team placed 1st at regionals – the first time in five years D39 placed first as a team. At the state level, our team placed 2nd and one student placed 2nd individually earning a trip to the National competition in Washington D.C.
  • Three newly appointed administrators were welcomed: Doug Wernet as the new 7th grade assistant principal at WJHS; Jon Valentino as the new assistant principal for Harper and Romona; and Meghann Young as the new assistant principal for Central and McKenzie.
  • We are almost ready to have our new website go live and you can expect to see it in June after school is out. It provides a fresh look, along with our new logo and tagline, and users will find improved menus and navigation. Tony DeMonte and Holly Goldin gave a quick demo.
  • We are proud to announce that Solid Waste Agency of Northern Cook County honored all 6 of our schools with its annual awards. They noted waste reduction practices such as waste free lunch days, water stations in cafeterias, composting, "Be Nice Use It Twice Boxes," reusable plates, cups, utensils, recycling and food organics composting, and textile collections for donation.

FOIA requests

Strategic Plan Updates

  • Mimi Rodman and Matthew Pietrafetta - Community Review Committee Report – This annual report is presented in May and the District's response comes in August. In addition, the District's goal update in June incorporates CRC information from the prior year. This year's CRC report was a self-reflection.
  • Mrs. Jackson and Mr. Dubnow - Fifth Grade Team Structure Pilot – This year HMS piloted several team options for 5th grade. Mrs. Jackson and her fifth grade team are recommending the fifth grade structure that involves a partially departmentalized schedule.
  • Dr.Lechner and Mrs. Schaff - Board Strategy Committee – The idea for this committee came out of the Board's self-evaluation retreat.

Annual Business

  • Ms. Buscemi – Fiscal Year 2017 District 39 Tentative Budget – As reviewed at School Finance Committee, the tentative Budget is ready for approval. This will allow ample time to display the budget and hold an August public hearing. Operating Funds budgeted revenues are $68,607,781 and budgeted expenditures are $68,683,375. The budgeted year-end fund balance reflects $32,223,932 or 46.9% of annual expenditures in fund reserve.
  • Ms. Buscemi – Resolution to Transfer Funds from the Operations and Maintenance Fund to the Capital Projects Fund - The transfers will occur after Board approval of payments each month. This will take out the expenditure spikes in the O & M fund due to one-time construction projects for a more accurate reflection of expenditures in this fund.

Board Action

The Consent Agenda was approved including the following:

  • Personnel Report dated May 23, 2016
  • Fiscal17 District 39 Tentative Budget and Approve a Public Hearing
  • Fiscal17 WCSEA Tentative Budget and Approve a Public Hearing
  • Resolution Authorizing Accounting Transfers from the Operations and Maintenance Fund to the Capital Projects Fund
  • 2106-2017 Administrators Contracts
  • First Reading Revised Board of Education Policies 2:20; 2:260; 2:300; Revised Students policy 7:10; Delete Policies 2:310; 2:500
  • Second and Final Reading Revised School District Policies 1:10; 1:20; Revised Personnel Policy 5:125; Revised Student Policy 7:200; Proposed New Board of Education Policies 2:240 and 2:250; Delete Board of Education Policies 2:251; 2:270; 2:275; 2:280; 2:285; 2:290; 2:400. andSecond Read and Deletion of Board of Education Policy 1:30.

The next meeting of the District 39 Board of Education will be on Monday,
June 27, 2016 at 7:00 PM at the Mikaelian Education Center.