In this edition of UnifiEd School Board Watch, we’ll take a look at the agenda for the May 21st regular session of the Hamilton County Schools Board of Education. The meeting will be held in the Hamilton County School Board Meeting Room at 3074 Hickory Valley Road. The Board Meeting is set to begin at 5:30 PM. We will be there live tweeting, follow along on Twitter: @UnifiEdHC, #HCSchools.

Items of Interest:

  • First Reading of Board Policy 1.404: Appearances Before the Board:In December, UnifiEd launched a campaign for greater public participation and transparency in Hamilton County public schools. After campaigning for 4 months and building a strong community coalition, Hamilton County School Board voted to revise their Public Comment Policy. The revised policy will allow the public to address the Board by signing up to speak at least 30 minutes prior to the start of the meeting. The first three individuals who have signed in to address the Board will be allowed to speak for up to five minutes unless time is extended by the Board. The second, and final reading of the policy will be in June.

To see the entire agenda with supporting documents click HERE.

On the consent agenda* for Thursday’s Meeting the board is scheduled to approve:

Education and Leadership Support

1. Field Trips are scheduled for the following schools: East Hamilton Middle/High, Hixson High, Sequoyah High, Signal Mountain Middle/High, Central High, Chattanooga School for the Arts and Sciences, East Ridge High, Hunter Middle, Ooltewah High, and Soddy Daisy High School

2. Approval of Special Courses for SY 2015-16 at Hixson High School (World Language-American Sign Language) and Sale Creek High School (Etymology)

Business and Finance

1. Bids

  • Recommended approval for various contracts for school maintenance projects, athletic equipment & supplies, teaching materials & supplies, medical/first aid equipment & supplies, and for medical reinsurance renewal
  • Recommended renewal of various software maintenance and support subscriptions including: Environmental Systems Research Institute (ESRI), IMB SPSS Statistical Software, Pearson Software for PowerSchool, and Harland Technology for ScanTools Scanner
  • Recommended approval of contracts with: Stellar Therapy Services, City of Chattanooga Dept. of Youth & Family Development Head Start/Early Head Start Program, Parkridge Medical Centers, Signal Centers, and Mose and Garrison Siskin Memorial Foundation

2. Conferences and Consultants

  • 2015 Institute for CTE Teacher Training worth $33,449 for sixty-one CTE teachers from various schools (Funding Source: Perkins Grant)
  • IBM Support for Installation and Migration SPSS Modeler worth $37,620 (Funding Source: General Purpose Fund – $28,500 and Race to the Top Fund – $9,120)
  • NCS Pearson PowerSchool On-Site Training Services worth $18,600 (Funding Source: General Purpose Fund)
  • Teachers Development Group Summer Consultant for iZone Cluster (Funding Source: iZone/School Improvement Grant)

3. Financial Reports

  • Monthly financial report comparing proposed budget to actual expenditure through March 31, 2015

4. Budget Amendments

  • Federal and Self-Funded Programs: Title I Improving Basic Programs (decrease of $289), Safe School Climate (decrease of $93,040), Title III Discretionary Immigrant Grant (worth $24,884), IDEA Preschool (increase of $44,707), Bible History Teachers Self-Funded Program (increase of $62,158), Carl Perkins IV Reserve Vocational Self-Funded Program (increase of $16,148), School Paid Positions Self-Funded Program (increase of $27,501), Supplemental Salaries Self-Funded Program (decrease of $4,052), Ochs-Oakes Award Self-Funded Program (worth $2,125)
  • General Operating: Transfer between account codes for System Wide Vocational Ed (no additional funds requested)
  • Appropriation of Funds for Textbooks: Math Textbook Adoption approved by the Board at the April 16 meeting worth $1,466,063 (Legal Settlement Revenue – $1,174,087 and Unassigned Fund Balance – $291,976)
  • School Nutrition Budget Transfers Transfer between account codes for the School Nutrition Department (no additional funds requested)

5. Approval of School Fees

  • Approval is needed to allow schools to charge fees to students (fees vary between schools and grades)

Auxiliary Services

1. Renewal of Contract for Environmental Consulting Services from July 1, 2015-June 30, 2016 (annual cost of $89,292)

Administrative/Business Matters

1. Community Eligibility Provision (CEP) Renewal 2015-16: Recommendation from the School Nutrition program to continue CEP for the upcoming year with the same forty-seven schools receiving assistance as first calculated

2. Ivy Academy Grade Levels – Recommendation for Ivy Academy to add sixth grade beginning in the 2015-16 school year and adding a new middle school grade each subsequent year

3. Board Policies

  • First Reading of Board Policy 5.114: Personnel Records: Revisions restricting the public from obtaining an employee’s person information including home or personal cell phone numbers, personal accounts, residential information or driver’s license information; the previous information is also restricted for the employee’s immediate family or household members
  • First Reading of Board Policy 5.301: Religious, Emergency and Legal Leave : Recommended revision that includes religious leave to employees for a maximum of two days annually. Emergency Leave revised allowing the employee a maximum of three hours to be taken for sudden, unexpected occurrences; leave beyond three hours shall be taken as personal leave, sick leave or leave without pay.
  • First Reading of Board Policy 5.501 Employee Grievances: Recommended revisions to grievance policy including revisions made to the submission process, fees and expenses, and hearing protocols
  • First Reading of New Board Policy 5.504: Evaluation Appeals: The Board has created a new Evaluation Appeals Policy to comply with the Tenn. Code Ann. 49-1-302 which requires the development of a local-level evaluation grievance procedure to provide teachers and principals to challenge the accuracy and adherence of the evaluation policies adopted by the State Board of Education

**(Consent Agenda) These items are considered to be routine and non-controversial by the Board and will be approved by one motion. If any Board member objects to including an item on the consent agenda then that item shall become a separate action item for discussion.