August 15, 2016 board meeting

16 Aug
Nurses.jpg

Three school nurses provided a health services update to the board on August 15, 2016. Pictured are, from left, Franklin Nurse Carol Barlow, Woodbury Nurse Elly Mack and MHS and lead district Nurse Stacey Tool-Crawford.

Health Services Report
Marshalltown High School and lead district Nurse Stacey Tool-Crawford, Woodbury Nurse Elly Mack and Franklin Nurse Carol Barlow gave an update on health services provided in the district.
Tool-Crawford said the three primary duties of the nursing staff are student health, well-being and academic success.
“The need for school nurses has never been stronger,” Barlow said.
The student population in the district is 5,320 and nurse office visits totaled 50,626 from August 2015 to June 2016.
Mack said one of the most important things to do is build a trust relationship with the child so they feel comfortable coming the nurse. She said it’s also important to build trust with parents as well.

New administrator introduction

Stevenson,Lisa

Dr. Lisa Stevenson

Dr. Lisa Stevenson, the new director of instruction, introduced herself. She has been in education for 21 years including 10 years as an ESL teacher. She has been a curriculum director and principal for the past 11 years and comes from Bettendorf.
“I’m real excited to be here,” Stevenson said. “It’s been a whirlwind the last six weeks.”

Personnel items
For the initial list of personnel items, click here.
Director of Human Resources Anthony Spurgetis also provided another list of additional personnel items at the meeting, which included:

Appointments:

Joshua Wesley, Director of Technology, Salary $97,000

Reji Kurian, Resource Specialist at Marshalltown Learning Academy- Salary $37,000

Pamela McDonnell, ESL Teacher at Senior High, Salary- MA/Step 10

Matt Tullis, Special Ed II teacher at Lenihan Intermediate, Salary MA + 30/Step 15

Tiffany White, Paraeducator at Rogers Elementary School, Salary $9.77/hour

Change of Contract:

Stephanie Collins, Special Ed II Teacher at Rogers Elementary (from Woodbury Elementary),

Spurgetis said Wesley has been a supervisor of network services at a school district in North St. Paul, Minnesota. He is scheduled to begin on Sept. 1.

Bus Transfer Discussion
With the advent of the new police and fire station to be built on the site of the current bus transfer lot, the district is looking into other locations for this transfer site in the future.
Superintendent Dr. Theron Schutte said informal discussions have taken place as they search for a centralized and safe location for the new transfer site.
Board President Bea Niblock stressed the bus transfer site will be in the same location to begin the school year and the near future and encouraged others to spread the word.

Board Vacancy
Director of Business Operations Brian Bartz talked about the board vacancy, with an application deadline of August 31. For more information on this vacancy, click here.

From Board President Bea Niblock
“This most recent meeting of the school board marks the beginning of a very busy week. At the meeting we heard from Dr. Stevenson, Director of Instruction, about her past professional life and her goals for the coming year. That is the last report of 7 new administrators in the district.
And Tuesday, August 16th marks the Open House for the new administrators to meet and greet the public. The Open House will be held at the Roundhouse (team room) from 4:30-6:30 p.m. and is open to staff and community. We hope that many people will come to meet the new administrators who will be providing new direction to the district this year.
Thursday, August 18th is the date for all MCSD staff to meet together in the Auditorium. Various individuals will speak to welcome back or welcome aboard the tenured and new staff of the district. This is the beginning of the beginning with the first day of school on Tuesday, August 23rd. Welcome back to staff and students!” -Bea Niblock

August 11, 2016 Special Meeting

12 Aug

The school board met in a special session on August 11, 2016 to approve personnel hires. The meeting was held to approve the hiring of several of the new teachers who will be reporting for new teacher orientation on August 15, said Superintendent Dr. Theron Schutte.

To view the personnel items approved, click here.

Note: Director of Human Resources Anthony Spurgetis pulled Joseph Doyen (Miller art) off the list of hires to be approved.

The next regular meeting of the school board will be at 5 p.m. on Monday, August 15 in district offices.

The board also invites everyone to an open house to meet new school administrators from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. on Tuesday, August 16 in the team room of the Marshalltown High School Roundhouse. For more information on the open house, click here.

August 1, 2016 Board Meeting

2 Aug

Open House
There will be an open house to meet the several new administrators in the Marshalltown Community School District from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. on August 16 in the team room of the Marshalltown High School Roundhouse. For more information on this event, click here.

newdirectors.jpg

New MHS Activities/Athletics Director Rollie Ackerman talks to the board during the August 1 meeting. Also pictured at the table, from left, is new Miller Associate Principal David Glenn, new Miller Principal Pat Rial and new Buildings and Grounds Director Brett Purvis.

New Administrator/Director Introductions
Several new administrators and directors introduced themselves at the board meeting on August 1 including Rollie Ackerman, David Glenn, Pat Rial, Brett Purvis, Anthony Spurgetis and Dr. Theron Schutte.
Activities/Athletics Director Ackerman said he is planning a fall sports kickoff with team scrimmages on August 19.
Glenn, the new associate principal at Miller Middle School, said his immediate goal will be to continue the work which has been started, especially with standards based grading and supporting PBIS.
Purvis comes from the Iowa Valley Community College District and is the new director of buildings and grounds. “I look forward to serving you,” Purvis said.
Pat Rial, new principal at Miller Middle School, comes from the associate principal post at Miller. He said project based learning and standards based grading will continue to be a focus.
“I’m excited to build on the positive relationships I’ve had at Miller,” Rial said.
Anthony Spurgetis, new director of human resources, arrived from Des Moines Schools.
“Very excited to be here, very excited about our new admin team,” Spurgetis said.
New Superintendent Dr. Theron Schutte said his welcome has been “unbelievable” in the community.
Dr. Schutte said he is excited to move forward this fall with crafting a renewed strategic plan for the district.

Personnel
For personnel items approved by the board, click here. Spurgetis said one hire on this list, John Pelzer, has decided not to take the assistant football coach position.

Committee.jpg

Woodbury Teacher Librarian Sue Cahill, left, reports on the findings of the continuous learning calendar committee to the board. Also pictured giving the report at the table, from left, is Arlene McAtee, Karina Hernandez and Jenny Fisher.

Continuous Learning Calendar Committee Recommendation
Arlene McAtee and other members of the continuous learning calendar committee presented to the board including Sue Cahill, Jenny Fisher and Karina Hernandez.
Several other committee members were also in attendance.
The 18-member committee spent more than 14 months looking at the possibility of a continuous learning calendar or a balanced calendar in Marshalltown.
The majority of the committee (80 percent) recommended MCSD should move from a 12 week summer break to an 8 week summer break to help cut summer learning loss.
The committee also recommended the following: that the change be made gradually, to commit to the alternative calendar for no less than three years, intersessions created through an additional break time and some of the summer break be used in whole or in part for remediation and enrichment, have baseline data and measure changes over time.
McAtee said the committee members were all in agreement that the district consider having a broader community dialogue to get community input on this potential change.
The board had several questions for members of the committee regarding their research, which was extensive with school districts that have implemented a balanced calendar out of state. No current Iowa school district is on a balanced calendar though some have certain buildings on a type of calendar like this.
Dr. Schutte gave some background on a school that used a balanced calendar in Bettendorf.
“It most helps a challenged demographic population,” Schutte said.
Dr. Schutte asked about whether this calendar is feasible at the state level, according to Iowa Code.
McAtee said they talked with legislative advisors and weren’t told exactly that they couldn’t do this.
“We were given the impression that it was possible to do this,” McAtee said.
The board thanked the calendar committee for their many months of work and meetings.

Next step
Board President Bea Niblock said the next step is for the board to take this information and work with the central office cabinet to provide for focus groups at the community level. President Niblock said there is a need to investigate together and move out in the community for a broader community perspective on this issue before making any decision to pursue this type of calendar.

To view the report from the committee, click here.

Operations/Maintenance Report
New Buildings and Grounds Director Brett Purvis gave a brief update on his department as we are three weeks away from the start of school on August 23.
“We look very capable of hitting all of our goals,” Purvis said as they get ready for the start of school.
Purvis said he is working to get the grounds of the schools looking better.
“We kind of like to pick up the curb appeal,” Purvis said of the appearance around schools.

Board Policies
204.6 – Notice of Board Meetings – Marked at reviewed, check on legal reference
204.7 – Quorum for Meetings – Marked as reviewed
204.8 – Rules of Order – Marked as reviewed
204.9 – Agenda and Order of Regular Business Meetings – Marked as reviewed
204.10 – Community Participation in Board Meetings – Marked as reviewed

From Board President Bea Niblock
“The board had the opportunity to hear from the continuous learning calendar committee at Monday’s board meeting. The committee, made up of educators and community people, had worked for 14 months to interview school districts which used the continuous calendar model and to do the necessary research on summer learning loss and other pertinent topics.
The recommendation, from the majority of the committee, was to encourage MCSD to move from a 12 week summer break to an 8 week summer break. This would create short intersessions during the school year to be used for remediation and enrichment. It was recommended that the change be made gradually and methodically.
The board accepted the committee’s research and data and agreed to work with the Central Office cabinet to further investigate the possibility for such a move in the district. This would include community focus groups to gather the impressions and opinions of a broader segment of the community. Watch for further information on this process from the MCSD Board of Education.” – Bea Niblock

July 18, 2016 board meeting

19 Jul
Hernandez.jpg

Rogers Elementary Principal Dr. Mick Jurgensen, left, recognizes Karina Hernandez from Mid-Iowa Community Action during the July 18 board meeting. Jurgensen said Hernandez is very dedicated to work in the schools in several different programs.

Recognitions
Karina Hernandez from Mid-Iowa Community Action was recognized by the school board and district. Hernandez is very active in several of the schools year-round and this summer leads Rogers University and the Munch and More programs. She also is involved in the Marshalltown High School 4-H Club, Spread the Words- Read by Third initiative and more.
“She is just everywhere in the school district and deserved this recognition,” said Rogers Elementary School Principal Dr. Mick Jurgensen. “We are much stronger with her support.”
Hernandez said being around youth is her passion.
“I’m thankful for being around what I like to do,” Hernandez said.

Personnel
For personnel items approved by the board, click here.
Of the hires approved by the board was Dave Glenn, the new associate principal at Miller Middle School, who was in attendance at the meeting.
“We are very excited to have him come on our administrative team,” said Superintendent Dr. Theron Schutte.

XLP.jpg

Director of Special Services Matt Cretsinger talks to the board about the Extended Learning Program (XLP) alongside XLP teachers Deb Christenson, center, and Nicole Holman

Extended Learning Program (XLP)
Director of Special Services Matt Cretsinger led this presentation and was assisted by district elementary XLP teachers Nicole Holman and Deb Christenson.
Cretsinger said the Extended Learning Program will now go by the acronym XLP to not be confused with English Language Proficiency.
The XLP Program works to support accelerated students in a variety of ways and serves 5 percent of the students in the district for a total of 300. Cretsinger said the district will look to recruit a more diverse student population into the XLP program to better reflect the district’s demographics after a memo from the Office of Civil Rights and the Department of Justice.
Conversation was held around the board wanting to grow the XLP program and ways to look at funding to allow for more participation.
To view the presentation document, click here.

Review Board Calendar
Board President Bea Niblock gave the board a printed copy of the board calendar as it relates to a board policy. This calendar lists proposed annual agenda items and is the policy 204.9 R-1. The board approved minor changes to the policy.

Food Service Report
Director of Food Service Lynn Large gave a report on the summer meals program and a look ahead to new menu items for the fall. The summer meals program served on average 656 kids a day in June and 491 students a day in July

LARGE

Lynn Large

“We’ve had a great summer,” Large said.

New additions for the menu for the fall include: tamales (due to Miller and MHS student request), extended salad offerings for students in the cafeteria and for staff to order and a new cookie.

Large said partnerships with a local farm and Iowa Choice Harvest will bring more fresh food to the district.

Large has a goal of increasing participation in the lunch program for MHS students this school year. She said they are trying new ideas such as a “grab and go” lunch option with deli wraps, sandwiches and new salads in a box. A tailgate style lunch with a grill at the front of  the building is also being considered.

Food Service Contracts for 2016-17
Large presented five contracts up for renewal by the board.

  1. Renewal of Contract with Loffredo Fresh Produce Inc.
  1. Renewal of Contract with Martin Brothers Distributing
  1. Pizza Bid:  Contract award to NPC International (dba Pizza Hut) and to Iowa Pizza Co. (dba Domino’s)
  1.  Milk Contract renewed year two (2016-2017 and summer program) with Hiland Dairy
  1.  Agreement between MCSD and Nurtrislice, Inc. for Nutrislice Software Services.

The board approved the foodservice contracts for 2016-17.

Roundhouse Resolution for Final Acceptance and Closing Final Project Costs
Director of Business Operations Brian Bartz proposed this resolution on the final acceptance and closing final project costs with Dean Snyder Construction for Phase 1 of the Roundhouse. The board approved the resolution.

Board Policies
201.8 – Board Vacancies – Approved policy as presented, waived second reading.
203.5 – Comprehensive School Improvement Advisory Committee – Marked as reviewed
203.6 – Legal Counsel – One word added to policy, marked as reviewed
203.7 – Administration in Absence of Policy – Change typo at top, marked as reviewed
203.9 – Gifts to Board of Directors – Marked as reviewed
203.10 – Board Self-Evaluation – Marked as reviewed.

Board members report
Board Vice President Janelle Carter would like to plan an open house for the public and staff to have a meet and greet with the several new administrators in the district. The board members were receptive to this and one will be planned, possibly in mid-August. Look for more information on this open house in the coming weeks.

From Board President Bea Niblock
“We’ve heard of Christmas in July, but we don’t usually hear “Happy New Year!”
But, July is truly a month of beginnings for a school district. It is the beginning of the contract year and the fiscal year. And with that beginning, we had the opportunity to welcome new people to the district at last night’s board meeting.
Dr. Theron Schutte, Dr. Lisa Stevenson, Anthony Spurgetis, Pat Rial, David Glenn, Brett Purvis, and Rollie Ackerman all join the administrative team. And many certified and classified staff members join the MCSD family, as well.
As Joyce Meyer, author and speaker, says “Don’t be afraid of change. Because it is leading you to a new beginning.”
And so, we begin the 2016-2017 school year. Welcome aboard to many new faces, and welcome back to our old and trusted friends.” – Bea Niblock

 

June 23, 2016 special board meeting

23 Jun

The MCSD Board of Education held a special meeting on June 23, 2016. After an exempt session, the board approved the following items in open session:

Secretarial staff compensation – The board approved a 3.22 percent salary package increase. Of this increase, 1.9 percent is salary alone.

Administrative staff compensation – The board approved a salary package increase of 3.4 percent, of which 2.38 percent is salary alone.

Stipend – The board approved a $2,500 stipend for Director of Business Operations Brian Bartz for additional duties he took on during the superintendent transition process.

June 20, 2016 Board Meeting

21 Jun
board.jpg

Lisa Koester and John Veldey present the agreement on the salary settlement for teachers to the school board at the June 20 meeting.

Personnel

Stevenson,Lisa copy

Dr. Lisa Stevenson

Dr. Lisa Stevenson was approved as the new director of instruction for the Marshalltown Community School District. Stevenson is currently an elementary principal in the Bettendorf Community School District. For more information on Dr. Stevenson, click here.

Director of Information Technology Jeff Weinberg has announced his resignation effective July 31, 2016 as he has taken a position with Heartland AEA in the Des Moines area.
Brett Purvis has been hired as the new director of buildings and grounds for MCSD. Brett arrives at MCSD
from Iowa Valley Community College District where he has served as director of
plant services since

Purvis, Brett

Brett Purvis

2011. He has more than 30 years of construction or buildings
management experience. For all the personnel actions approved by the board, click here.

Chromebook bids   
Director of Information Technology Jeff Weinberg and Instructional Design Specialist Dave Stanfield presented bids for Chromebooks, which support the Digital Conversion in the district. These devices will go to replace devices for all students at Miller Middle School and to mostly freshmen at Marshalltown High School.

The board approved the purchase of 1,235 new Dell Chromebooks of $253,965.40 from GovConnection Inc. of Merrimack, NH.

Ratification of salary settlement for teachers for 2016-17
District Attorney John Veldey and Director of Human Resources Lisa Koester presented this settlement. The teachers will receive a 3.4 percent overall salary package increase, which is a 2.54 percent increase in salary alone and the rest of the increase is insurance. The board approved the tentative agreement and it now goes to the Marshalltown Education Association for approval. For more information on the agreement, click here.

Ratification of salary settlement for food service employees for 2016-17
Koester presented some changes on this settlement, which can be accessed by clicking here. The settlement included a total package increase of 3.13 percent, which includes a 2 percent increase in the wage. The board approved the settlement.

Ratification of salary settlement for transportation for 2016-17
Koester presented changes agreed upon on this settlement. For drivers and monitors, there is a total salary package increase is 2.96 percent. It was approved by the board.

Ratification of salary settlement for buildings and grounds and transportation mechanics for 2016-17
Click here for the agreement changes. The salary package increase will be 2.99 percent, which includes a wage increase of 0.38 percent and the rest of the increase is due to increased insurance costs. It was approved by the board.

Ratification of salary settlement for paraeducators for 2016-17.
For the agreement, click here. This includes a salary package increase of 3 percent, which includes a salary increase 1.99 percent. The agreement was approved by the board.

Interfund borrowing
This item was presented by Director of Business Operations Brian Bartz. He recommended borrowing up to $1 million for the SAVE/SILO fund from the general fund to cover construction overages and completion of construction projects. This money will be paid back to the general fund prior to June 30, 2017. This item was approved by the board.

Board Policies
101.1 – Long Range Needs Assessment – Rewrite approved, waived second reading
711.2 – Student Conduct on School Transportation – Changes made to comply with PBIS and transportation handbook, Approved and waived second reading.
312.3-E1- Fringe Benefits – Administrators/Supervisors – Additions and deletions made. Approved and waived second reading.
201.8 – Board Vacancies – Changes made last fall were not reflected in current policy, will come back for first reading.
202.1- Code of Ethics – Marked as reviewed
202.2 – President-Vice President – Marked as reviewed
202.3- Secretary- Treasurer – Marked as reviewed
703.3R – Financial Planning Calendar – Marked as reviewed
804.2E – Video Surveillance and Electronic Monitoring Exhibit – Marked as reviewed

Closed Session
The board came out of a closed session and approved an agreement on the Roundhouse renovation.

The next regular school board meeting will be at 5 p.m. on July 18. It is the only regular meeting planned for July. The board will meet at noon on Thursday, June 23 in a special session to talk about administrator salaries for 2016-17.

 

From Board President Bea Niblock
“At the end of June, board meetings are usually not very long and have pretty uncomplicated agendas. However, this board meeting was one of the most important board meetings to present itself.

The board approved negotiated salary and benefit packages for teachers, food service employees, transportation, buildings and grounds, transportation mechanics, and paraeducators. These complete packages will give the district the opportunity to hire highly qualified staff members to enhance the educational lives of the students in the district.   That was evidenced by the list of personnel hired to fill vacant positions at this meeting, as well.

Highly qualified, energetic and compassionate employees are the cornerstone to a sound educational system and the start of becoming the ‘district of choice.’”  – Bea Niblock

June 6, 2016 board meeting

7 Jun
Abbe.jpg

Marshalltown High School history teacher Alex Abbe talked to the board on June 6 about his selection for the James Madison Memorial Fellowship.

Recognition
Marshalltown High School history teacher Alex Abbe talked about his selection for the James Madison Memorial Fellowship.
As part of his selection as a fellow, Abbe will receive $24,000 to pay for his master’s degree studies at Ashland University and participate in a four-week summer institute in 2017 at Georgetown University in Washington DC to deepen his content knowledge in history.
He said at the core of his studies is to help “make history matter as it should.”

Personnel items
For personnel items, click here.

Among the personnel items was the appointment of Pat Rial as the next principal of Miller Middle School.  Rollie Ackerman has been hired as the new Activities Director at Marshalltown High School. He has served in the AD role at Grundy Center for the past 13 years.

Paraprofessional Educators
Jon Thomas of Teamsters Local 238 spoke on behalf of the paraprofessional educators of MCSD. Many district paraeducators attended the meeting as well.
Thomas advised the district to work to reduce the 30 percent attrition rate among paraeducators.
“We are constantly trying to hire 30 percent of the workforce,” Thomas said.
He said they would rather see fewer paras who are better compensated which could result in a lower turnover rate. Thomas said he believes there is a need revamp the process by which paraeducators are assigned to schools.
This was a non-action item.

Open Enrollment Out
Director of Human Resources Lisa Koester gave an update on students open enrolling out of the district. Currently 567 students open enroll out of the district out of 5,321 students.
Discussion was held on the idea of contacting parents of open enrollment out students as part of a survey.
Koester said the number of open enrollment out students is an issue and the strategic plan has a goal to make Marshalltown the “district of choice.”
The board members were adamant about finding ways to lower the number.
To view the presentation document, click here.

Summer Camp Insurance Coverage
This item was presented by Director of Business Operations Brian Bartz and Activities Director Craig Huegel after guidance was released by the Iowa Department of Education on how camps are to be handled. This action item will extend liability coverage for camps for 2016, but not in the future.
Discussion was held on camps being held and who sponsors camps. The motion was approved.

Copier Bid
Bartz and Director of Information Technology Jeff Weinberg presented a recommendation that Advanced Systems of Waterloo be awarded the copier contract in the district starting July 1. The rate per copy will be $.0088 for the life of the contract. The motion was approved.

Board Policies
100.2 – Equal Educational Opportunity – Marked as reviewed
101.1 – Long Range Needs Assessment – Policy rewrote, will be brought back for first reading
101.1 R-1 – Long Range Needs Assessment Process – Marked as reviewed
101.1-R-2 – Early Childhood Process – Parental Notification – Marked as reviewed
200 – Statement of Guiding Principles – Marked as reviewed.
711.1- Student School Transportation – Marked as reviewed
711.1R – Student Eligibility for Bus Service – Marked as reviewed
711.2- Student Conduct on School Transportation – Delete “After three warnings…” sentence so it corresponds with new transportation handbook discipline as it relates to PBIS. Will come back as first reading
711.8 – Transportation in Inclement Weather – Marked as reviewed
312.3-E1 – Fringe Benefits – Administrators/Supervisors – Prescription drug listing changed to “scheduled benefits” instead of $5/$10. Also minor changes to professional dues sentence. To come back for first reading.

The board then went into an exempt session to conduct a negotiations strategy meeting.

The next regular meeting of the board is at 5 p.m. June 20 in district offices.

From Board President Bea Niblock
“A presentation was made to the board regarding the numbers of students open enrolling out of the district each year. Board members began a discussion surrounding the trends of that data. It was asked that such a presentation be made on a regular basis at subsequent board meetings.
It is the intent of the board to look at trends in the data regarding the open enrollment by grade, year and cohort groups. A goal to decreasing those figures is part of the board’s work in the development of a revised strategic plan with the new superintendent, Dr. Schutte.
Decreasing open enrollment out of the district is a high priority for this board.” – Bea Niblock

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.