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September 2018 School Board Watch Blog

In this edition of UnifiEd’s School Board Watch Blog, we will take a look at the agenda for the September 20th, 2018 regularly scheduled 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 and is set to begin at 5:30 p.m. The meeting will be livestreamed by HCDE through their Facebook page and the recording will be posted here on the UnifiEd blog afterwards.

View the full agenda and supporting documents >

Hot Topics:

  • Superintendent, Dr. Bryan Johnson, will be requesting the Board vote to formally adopt the Future Ready 2023 Plan to codify the work of the Board and district leadership as they’ve collaborated with the community to chart the desired course for students, teachers, leaders, and the community. The plan outlines five action areas: Accelerating Student Achievement, Future Ready Students, Great Teachers and Leaders, Effective and Efficient Operations and Engaged Community. Each of these areas have key performance indicators, strategies, and action steps that will be implemented over the plan’s five-year duration. In addition, Dr. Johnson will update the Board on the progress towards the goals within this plan on a monthly basis.

Recognitions and Presentations:

  • The Principal at East Brainerd Elementary will be recognized as the 2018 Tennessee Principal of the Year. This award is given annually to a school leader for outstanding service in education and exceptional leadership that drives overall improvements in his or her school. The East Brainerd Elementary principal has also been named one of the nine finalists for the 2018-2019 Tennessee Principal of the Year that will be announced on October 4th.
  • The Chief Schools Officer will recognize McConnell Elementary, East Ridge Middle, and Loftis Middle schools for earning a Level 5 in all content areas, the highest level of student growth, in the recent Tennessee Value-Added Assessment System (TVAAS) for the 2018 school year.
  • In order to provide the School Board with up-to-date information on strategies being implemented and progress towards the goals outlined with the Future Ready 2023 plan, district leadership will provide a monthly report describing the work being done. This month the board will hear updates on areas within Accelerating Student Achievement, Great Teachers and Leaders, and Effective and Efficient Operations.

Field Trips:

  • Battle Academy for Teaching and Learning and Spring Creek Elementary will send students to attend 4H Camps.
  • Chattanooga High Center for Creative Arts, Chattanooga School for the Arts and Sciences Upper, Red Bank High School, Central High School, Hixson High School, and Ooltewah Middle School will participate in music related field trips.
  • Chattanooga School for the Liberal Arts will send sixth grade students to Alabama to study at Nature’s Classroom.
  • East Hamilton School, Sale Creek Middle/High School, Soddy-Daisy Middle School, and Signal Mountain Middle/High will send eighth grade students to Washington, DC for learning opportunities and to explore the nation’s capital.
  • Signal Mountain Middle/High School, Chattanooga School for the Arts and Sciences Upper, Hixson High School, and Sale Creek Middle/High School will participate in sports related field trips.
  • Ooltewah High School, Sale Creek Middle/High School, and Soddy Daisy High School will participate in JROTC related field trips.
  • Sale Creek Middle/High School will send students to participate in the Advance Art College Trip and Workshop.
  • Soddy-Daisy High School will send students enrolled in Student Council to participate in the Southern Association of Student Councils Conference.
  • Hixson High School will send students to attend FFA Chapter in Indiana

Bids/Contracts and Conferences:

Board approval is sought for:

  • Renovations for the Lookout Valley Middle/High Tennis Court totalling $279,000.00 with funds to be provided from the 17/18 Capital Projects Fund.
  • The lease agreements and security charges for Graduation 2019 totalling $54,884.47.
  • The purchase of Edgenuity K-12 Courseware, Pathblazer Solutions, and Professional Development for Parkridge Valley Academy School. The total amount requested is $28,950.00 which will be funded by their school based Title I funds.
  • The purchase of Reading Plus Software Programs from Taylor Associates Communications, Inc. The program creates personalized learning experiences by combining advances in reading research with a user-centered design while providing real-time reporting and data analysis at the district, school, class, and student levels. This will total $25,000.00 for the 2018-2019 school year and funding will be provided through school based Title I Federal Programs budgets.
  • The addendum to the MOU with Blue Cross Blue Shield of Tennessee for the Project SEARCH Program. The MOU outlines the roles and responsibilities of the parties as they work in partnership to increase opportunities for students with disabilities. The addendum is needed to outline an access agreement regarding the liability insurance for interims and HCDE employees as requested by BCBST. No funds are needed or requested with this agreement.
  • The renewal of the multi-year contract with DecisionED: Software and Support, including IBM Cognos Enhanced Consumer Support. This will total $161,860.00 with funds to be provided by the General Budget.
  • The Central High School track modifications totalling $787,400.00 with funding to be provided from Capital Funds.

Additional approval is sought for:

  • Sending 18 individuals from the 13 different institute schools to attend The National Career Academy Coalition (NCAC) conference, a national model for best practices for career academies providing professional development, resources, technical assistance, and so forth. This will total $29,745.00 with funding to be provided by the NSFY Grant obtained by Future Ready Institutes.

Budget Amendments:

  • Board approval is needed to amend the FY19 General Purpose Operating Budget for the reclassifying of existing budget appropriations between various accounts for:
    • Contracts with the Exceptional Education- System Wide
  • Board approval is needed for Federal Grants and Self-Funded Programs for FY 2019 for the following budget amendments:
  • The Safe Schools Grant, with transfers between line items and a net increase of $1,028,103.00
  • The School Improvement Grant, with transfers between line items and a net increase of $107,608.00
  • The Work Based Learning Grant, totaling $3,918.00
  • Coordinated school health, with transfers between line items.
  • The Read To Be Ready Coaching Network Grant, totaling $10,000.00.
  • The Read To Be Ready Summer Grant, with a net decrease of $200.00.
  • The Carl Perkins Vocational Grant, with transfers between line items and a net increase of $40,145.00
  • The Therapy Services Self-Funded Program, with an increase of $406,612.00
  • JROTC Competitions Self-Funded Program, totaling $6,360.00
  • The Nursing Services Self-Funded Program, with an increase of $32,000.00
  • The Maintenance Recyclables Self-Funded Program, totaling $16,170.00
  • The FRI Externship Self-Funded Program, totaling $53,280.00
  • The Character Education Self-Funded Program, totaling $12,894.00
  • The Future Ready Institutes Self-Funded Program, totaling $6,400.00
  • The Character Education Donations Self-Funded Program, totaling $6,500.00
  • The FRI Tyner Academy Self-Funded Programs, totaling $62,500.00
  • The CO Flower Fund Self-Funded Program, totaling $8,360.00

Board Policies:

  • Second Readings – These revisions are presented for Board approval via a second and final reading:
    • Board Policy 4.601 Grading System- Second Reading: This updates the current grading policy to reflect percentage of TCAP in student grades for both 3-8 and high school at 15% of the student’s grade. If TCAP raw scores are not received before the last day of school, the results will not be included in student grades.
    • Board Policy 5.114 Personnel Records- Second Reading: This updates the current personnel records policy to include a clause stating that no administrator or supervisor may offer an employment reference or a letter of recommendation for any employee or former employee of HCDE unless he or she directly supervised the employee or former employee within the preceding 12 months.
    • Board Policy 6.309 Zero Tolerance Offenses- Second Reading: This updates the current zero tolerance offense policy adding in language that states any student who “commits aggravated assault or commits an assault that results in physical contact with any teacher, principal, administrator, any other employee of the school, or school resource officer, shall be expelled for a period of not less than one calendar year.” The director of schools can modify this expulsion requirement on a case-by-case basis.

Administrative and Board Matters:

  • Board approval is sought for:
    • An award granted to the HCDE Future Ready Institute at Tyner Academy funded by EPB for $250,000.00 ($62,500.00 x 4 years).
    • The MOU between EPB and HCDE Future Ready Institutes that provides guidelines for the donation from EPB made to the EPB Institute of Technology and Networking at Tyner Academy.
  • Legal Services: A total of $20,000.00 in legal fees was paid in the month of August to Bennett & DeCamp, PLLC.

Events:

 

  • October 6: Teacher Professional Development – no students
  • October 9-13: Fall Break
  • October 16- December 1: Schools choose one extended day (3.5 hours) for Parent-Teacher Conferences
  • October 18: Board Meeting

 

 

School Board Meeting Recording

Please watch the meeting by clicking the “play” button on the video below!

School Board Watch Blog: February 2017

In this edition of UnifiEd’s School Board Watch Blog, we will take a look at the agenda for the February 16th regularly scheduled 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 and is set to begin at 5:30 PM. We will live tweet @UnifiEdHC, follow along at #HCSchools.

To see the entire agenda with supporting documents click here.

Hot Topics:

  • Board Policy 5.1041 Americans with Disabilities-First Reading: Due to federal law, there will an adoption in board policy regarding the American Disabilities Act (ADA) so that all employees specifically understand the ADA requirements. It details how employees can request for ADA Assistance.
  • iZone and Strategic Plan Update: Interim Superintendent Kirk Kelly will give an iZone update at the start of the school board meeting. Beginning last year, HCDE created a Strategic Plan draft for the 2017 year and Dr. Kelly will also give an update on its progress. This plan had a detailed focus on better supporting iZone schools.
  • Vote on the Title transfer of East Ridge High School Athletics Complex: An Interlocal Agreement has been made and entered into between the Hamilton County Board of Education and the City of East Ridge, Tennessee. HCDE agrees to transfer the title of the East Ridge High School Athletics Complex to the City of East Ridge for such time as the Board of Education operates East Ridge High School and East Ridge Middle School at their present locations.

Recognitions and Presentations:

  • The Principal of Orchard Knob and the iZone Director are requesting to honor the Orchard Knob Middle School Spelling Bee winners. In the District 4 Spelling Bee, student from OKMS placed 1st, 2nd, and 3rd, and we are excited to honor their incredible work and achievement.
  • The Principal of Lookout Valley Middle High will give a recognition of a student who maintained perfect attendance for all 12 years of his schooling.

Field Trips

  • Hixson High School will send students to students to attend Future Business Leaders of America State competition.
  • Lakeside Academy will participate in a science field trip at the Nature’s Classroom in Mentone, Alabama.
  • Signal Mountain High School, Lookout Valley Middle High, East Hamilton School, East Ridge High School, and Sale Creek High will send students to participate in the Tennessee YMCA Youth in Government Capital Conference and Tri-Star Conference.
  • East Hamilton Middle High School and Ooltewah High School will participate in the Special Olympics Winter Games.
  • Central High School will send students to Hendersonville to compete in a tournament.
  • CSAS Upper will send students to present research at the Junior Science and Humanities Symposium.
  • East Hamilton School, Hixson High School, Ooltewah Middle School, and Signal Mountain Middle High will participate in sports related field trips
  • Hixson High School, Red Bank High School, and Sale Creek High School will send students enrolled in JROTC to participate in related field trips.
  • Sale Creek High School will participate in an Art related field trip.
  • Signal Mountain Middle High School will participate in the Science Bowl 2017.
  • Signal Mountain Middle High School will participate in arts and music related field trips.
  • Soddy Daisy High School will participate in the National Forensics Qualifier Tournament.
  • STEM School will send students to compete in a robotics competition.
  • Signal Mountain Middle High School will participate in the Model United Nations Conference.

Bids:

  • The Principal at Chattanooga Center for Creative Arts is requesting the purchase of 21 pianos for music classes and programming totalling $45,178.97 for cost of equipment and installation.
  • The Director of Exceptional Education is requesting that the board approve the amendment with Stellar Therapy, for the provision of speech and language services to Private and Home School students. This contract amendment is for the private school proportional services plan paid for from the IDEA, Part B Grant $ 291,341 and IDEA, Preschool Grant $7,804 not to exceed $299,145.00.
  • The Director of Exceptional Education is requesting that the board approve the amendment with Stellar Therapy for a staffing contract for the 2015-2016 SY. The amendment is needed to cover additional staffing needs to cover two leave of absences, and one full time unfilled SLP position that has been vacant all school year. The contract amendment is for an additional $76,000 for the 16-17 school year making the total contract not to exceed $2,065,972.00.
  • A request to the board is being made for the approval to utilize CARTA for transportation services and as an additional charter bus carrier for the remainder of school year 2016-17, and include the 2017-18 school year.
  • The Principal at Red Bank Elementary School is requesting the approval of the purchase of leveled reading books collections A through E with Pioneer Valley Press/Books for a total of $1,606.50 from their school based Federal Title I budget.
  • A request is being made for the contract purchase of Reading Plus for Hamilton County High Schools. This contract includes Reading Plus seat access for 18 district high schools and program access for 36 months. The total investment is $174,400. with an agreement between HCDE and McClellan Foundation both paying half the amount ($87,200), which will come out of their General Budget.

Business and Finance:

  • The Principal at Boyd-Buchanan High School is requesting the approval to attend the TAIS Global Education in the classroom and beyond to be held in Nashville TN totalling the amount of $701.25. Funding for this request will come from the school’s based Federal Title II budget.
  • Approval is being requested for up to 10 staff members from Signal Mountain Middle School to attend an upcoming International Baccalaureate workshop in Atlanta, Georgia. Because the school has implemented the Middle Years Program, teachers are required to receive continuous training in their subject area for certification. The Conference Attendance Request totals $18,314.20. This includes registration and travel expenses for the group. Funds are to be provided by the General Purpose Budget.
  • A+Educators will provide a Dive into Google Drive one day training workshop for all 25 teachers, 2 school administrators, and 3 paraprofessionals totalling $4,500.00.
  • Assistant Superintendent of Finance will present the monthly financial report comparing budget to actual through December, 2016.

Budget Amendments

The following budget amendments for Federal Grants and Self-Funded Programs for FY2017 are recommended for approval:

  • Title I, Improving Basic Programs, with transfers between line items and a net decrease of $46,093
  • Title II, Teacher & Principal Training & Recruitment, with transfers between line items and a net decrease of $7,268
  • 21st Century Community Learning Centers at Year 3 for East Lake Academy, with transfers between line items
  • Volkswagen Teacher Training & Development Self-Funded Program, totaling $1,717
  • Gigabit Community Fund Self-Funded Program, totaling $10,000
  • Supplemental Salaries Self-Funded Program, with a net increase of $27,798

Additionally, board approval is needed to amend the FY17 General Purpose Operating Budget for the transfers between accounts for staffing, human resources, and system-wide benefits.

Human Resources:

  • Approval sought for a one-year Sabbatical Leave request by current I-Zone Director, Sheryl Randolph. Approval would result in Ms. Randolph receiving 50% of her current  salary during this leave while working through her doctoral studies. Her position would need to be back-filled during this time.

Administrative and Business Matters

  • To combat issues with a dated phone system in HCDE, the board has approved the Metro Nashville Contract for internet services and voice services for ENA in April 2016. Education Network of America (ENA) provides a voice over IP (VoIP) solution for telephones and for paging. In the August 2016 board meeting, the HCDE board approved $2 million for these telecommunication improvements. Contract and funding is in place to cover this purchase and it is recommended to provide the ENA SmartVoice solution for the entire school district.
  • Lee McDade will provide the board with a transportation update.
  • For the month of January, HCDE paid $25,697.84 in legal fees to Leitner, Williams, Dooley & Napolitan PLLC.

Important Dates and Events

  • President’s Day-February 20, 2017 (non-paid Holiday for School Staff-12 month employees report-offices will be open)

 

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