In this edition of UnifiEd’s School Board Watch, we’ll take a look at the agenda for the August 20th regular session of the Hamilton County School Board Meeting. 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:

  • Second and Final 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 6 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.

To see the entire agenda with supporting documents click HERE.

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

Eduction and Leadership Support

  • Field Trips are scheduled for the following schools: Chattanooga School for the Arts and Sciences students are taking college tour trips; a Hamilton County Collegiate High School student is doing a leadership training; Signal Mountain Middle/High School, Ooltewah High School, and Red Bank High School are doing sports related trips.

Business and Finance

1. Bids

  • Contract between HCDE and STARS (Students Taking A Right Stand) – This contract totals $31,500 and will provide training and support in the following initiatives: bullying prevention support, peer mediation training, leadership training, alternative to full suspension, and kindness matters campaign.  This contract is contingent upon approval of the Safe Schools and Safe and Supportive Schools Grants as submitted to the Tennessee Department of Education (TDOE) for SY 2015-16.
  • Contract/Proposal with Agile Mind Educational Holding, Inc. – This contract will provide an Intensified Algebra program for Howard High School and East Ridge High School ESOL students. The $21,3000 of funding will be provided by the federally funded grant for immigrant students awarded to HCDE for the 2015-16 school year.
  • Contract with Reading Plus/Taylor Associates Communications – This contract will provide Bess T. Shepherd, East Side Elementary, and Sequoyah High School with Reading Plus technology totaling $15,375. This program creates personalized learning experiences by combining advances in reading research with a user-centered design to inspire and empower today’s learner (Funding Source: Federal Title I budget).
  • Purchase of Title I Compacts from Channing Bete Company – This contract will provide the following Title I compacts for a total of $23,332.85: Parents Rights in Education – A Guide to the No Child Left Behind Act, School Wide Title I Programs – How and Why They Work, and School Wide Parent Compacts.
  • Renewal of Support and Maintenance with Book Systems – This contract renewal will provide students and faculty with easy access to their school’s online library catalog and educationally appropriate websites totaling $35, 936 (Funding Source: Self-Funded Program).
  • Early Approval to expand the playground design at the East Brainerd Elementary School – The principal and PTA are requesting the early approval to expedite the material fabrication and expansion of the playground at East Brainerd Elementary School totaling $50,000 (Funding Source: County Commission & school donations).
  • Early Approval of the Tyson and Jennie-O/Food Sales East Commodity Processing Revisions – Due to issues with handling the dark meat of the Tyson commodity and Avian flue with the Jennie-O turkey product, the School Nutrition Program is requesting replacement food items for school lunches.
  • Contract Extension for Fencing – This contract will furnish and install fencing for the schools system through A-Affordable Fencing Co. for SY 2015-16 (Funding Source: Operating/Maintenance and Capital Projects Budgets).
  • Purchase of Steam Boiler for CSAS – HCDE will purchase a steam boiler from Hajoca Corporation for a total of $42,523.47 (Funding Source: Capital Projects Fund).

2. Conferences and Consultants

  • A Plus Educator’s, LLC – This will provide teachers from Notre Dame High School, St. Jude Catholic School, and Our Lady Perpetual Help with manageable guidance on aligning and selecting instructional resources based on Current TN State standards totaling $25,910 (Funding Source: Schoo; Based Federal Title II).
  • Mary Jenkins, Consultant – This contract will provide East Ridge Middle School teachers and administrators with a consultant to empower them to incorporate research-based instructional methods and best teaching practices totaling $14,000 (Funding Source: School Based Federal Title I).
  • Dr. Terry Stevenson – This consultant will identify Bible teachers, maintain and enhance the quality and effectiveness of Bible history educators, and improve the overall learning experience of students in these classes (Funding Source: Self-Funding Bible in the Schools Program).
  • Teachers Development Group – This program will empower Soddy Daisy Middle School teachers to incorporate research-based instructional methods and best teaching practices in Mathematics totaling $13,350 (Funding Source: School Based Federal Title I).

3. Financial Reports

  • Monthly financial report comparing proposed budget to actual expenditure through June 30, 2015

4. Budget Amendments

  • Federal and Self-funded: Line item transfers for School Improvement Grant iZone Schools, line item transfers and a net increase of $138,880 for Safe School Climate, ConnnectTN Internet totaling $200,000, IDEA Discretionary Supplemental Grant totaling $20,070, Safety Security Systems Self-Funded Program totaling $85,789, Community Donations-Schools Self- Funded Program totaling $23,565, CLASS (Coalition of Large School Systems) Self-Funded Program totaling $130,245, Benwood Foundation Self-Funded Program with an increase of $900.

Board Matters

  • Naming of a Portion of a School Facility: The school committee at East Hamilton School has voted to recommend the football stadium be named to honor former Hamilton County Commissioner Larry Henry.

Administrative/Business Matters 

1. Change to Classified TCRS Plan: The Hamilton County Commission adopted resolutions changing the retirement plan for County employees from the existing TCRS defined benefit plan to an alternate hybrid retirement plan for classified employees hired October 1, 2015 or later.

2. First Reading of the Following Board Policies:

  • Board Policy 6.600 Student Records –  Due to the new requirements for student records policies under the 2014 Data Accessibility, Transparent and Accountability Act, it is necessary to revise the current policy for student records to comply with the new requirements which limits access to student records for confidentiality reasons unless needed for ‘legitimate educational interest’.
  • Board Policy 6.601 Student Records Annual Notification of Rights – Due to the new requirements for student records policies under the 2014 Data Accessibility, Transparent and accountability Act, it is necessary to adopt a new board policy regarding student records annual notification of rights. This information will notify parents(s) of students and eligible students of each student’s privacy rights and will be given to the student’s parent(s) or the eligible student at the time of enrollment.
  • Board Policy 6.602 Student Records Inspection & Correction Procedure – Due to the new requirements for student records policies under the 2014 Data Accessibility, Transparent and Accountability Act, it is necessary to adopt a new board policy regarding student records inspection and correction procedures that will allow parent(s) of students to inspect, review and request corrections to the student’s education records upon written request.
  • Board Policy 6.604 Student Surveys, Analyses, and Evaluation – Due to the new requirements for student records policies under the 2014 Data Accessibility, Transparent and Accountability Act, it is necessary to adopt a new board policy regarding student surveys strictly prohibiting the collection of data regarding student political affiliation or voting history, religious practices, and firearm ownership.

**(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.