MINUTES

 

POINTE COUPEE PARISH SCHOOL BOARD

337 Napoleon Street

New Roads, LA 70760

 

SPECIAL SCHOOL BOARD MEETING

Thursday, December 9, 2010

 

The Pointe Coupee Parish School Board met in a special session on Thursday, December 9, 2010, at 337 Napoleon Street, New Roads, LA.  Mr. Chad Aguillard, President, called the meeting to order at 5:55 p.m.

 

Board members present were Chad Aguillard, Frank R. Aguillard, Jr., Brandon Bergeron, James Cline, Debbie Collins, Kevin Hotard, Anita LeJeune, and Thomas Nelson.

 

Mr. James Cline lead the Pledge of Allegiance to the Flag of the United States of America.

 

Mrs. Debbie Collins offered the invocation.

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Consider Authorizing Administration to Reroute Buses, Rebid Routes by December 17, 2010, and Begin New Routes on January 10, 2011.  The Pointe Coupee Parish School Board adopted a budget months ago and requested that the Superintendent address different ways to reduce budgetary spending for a proactive approach in light of current and future decreases in revenue from the State and Federal government.  Reiterated was the fact that Board will not be receiving EduJob funding, monies that school systems throughout the state were promised and relying on to help them balance their already adjusted budgets due to state funding cuts!  Superintendent D'Amico presented twenty cost savings recommendations to the Finance Committee on Thursday, December 2, 2010.  Therefore, would like to recommend that the Board consider the following transportation adjustments: Combining or possibly eliminating bus routes, due to the fact that special needs' students can now be transported along with general student population; all buses can now be filled to capacity.   She mentioned that one route in the UPCE area can be eliminated; two routes at Livonia High School can be combined (these two buses travel in the same area and neither is filled to capacity); routes at the parochial and private school are being rerouted to be more efficient; one route at Rosenwald Elementary can be eliminated.  These actions will reduce four bus routes.  If the Board votes for rebidding, all routes, including First Student routes, will be available for the drivers to bid on and all remaining routes will go to First Student.  Mrs. D'Amico stated that years ago, the federal government paid for special education buses through IDEA; however, the general fund now pays for bus transportation for all students.  The federal government states that you have to accommodate students rather than segregate them.  Superintendent D'Amico stated that she anticipates a money savings of $100,000.00 minimum for 2010-2011, and a minimum savings of $200,000 for 2011-2012.  If four routes are reduced, this would be a proactive approach to prepare for future expected budget cuts from the state. A discussion followed regarding lifts on buses for special needs students, incidents on buses, zero funding for non-public transportation, bus sizes, etc. 

 

Mr. James Cline made a motion to adopt Superintendent D'Amico's recommendation regarding rerouting and rebidding school bus routes by December 17, 2010, with the new routes beginning on January 10, 2011.  Mr. Frank Aguillard seconded the motion.  Board member Debbie Collins requested a roll call vote.

 

YEAS:              Chad Aguillard, Frank Aguillard, Brandon Bergeron, James Cline, Kevin Hotard, and Thomas Nelson

 

NAYS:              Debbie Collins and Anita LeJeune

 

ABSTENTIONS: None

 

The motion passed by a 6-2 vote of the Board.

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Consider Discontinuation of a Contract with the City of New Roads for a Resource Officer at Rosenwald Elementary, and to allow Administration to Accept Quotes for an Automatic Remote Entry Gate System.  Superintendent D'Amico mentioned that the previous Administration had authorized a contract with the City of New Roads for a Resource Officer at Rosenwald Elementary because of the "foot" traffic on the inner city school campus.  Also mentioned was that Rosenwald Elementary is the only elementary school in the parish that has a Resource Officer.   For budgetary reasons, Mrs. D'Amico would like to have automatic gates installed, similar to the ones that Catholic Elementary uses, and discontinue the contract with the City of New Roads for a Resource Officer.  She mentioned that a gate has a one time cost rather than a reoccurring cost of a contract person.  She mentioned that  $22,000 can be saved by eliminating the contract payment of a Resource Office at Rosenwald in year one, and then an annual savings of $44,000 thereafter, thus requested that the Board consider allowing  Administration to consider her recommendation to accept quotes for an automatic remote entry gate system.  She further mentioned that the Resource Office will not lose his job, but will return to his job with the City of New Roads after the gates are installed.  A discussion ensued regarding a smooth transition with regard to keeping the students' best interest at heart, cameras at the gate, and concerns about a piecemeal budget "cutting" approach, rather than confronting the cost saving expenditure plan as a whole.

 

After a lengthily discussion regarding the discontinuation of a contract with the City of New Roads for a Resource Officer at Rosenwald Elementary, and to allow Administration to accept quotes for an automatic remote entry gate system, Mr. Thomas Nelson made a motion, seconded by Mrs. Debbie Collins, to table the agenda item until a subsequent meeting.  The motion carried.

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Prior to adjournment, Superintendent D'Amico stated that she had received a letter dated November 29, 2010 from Supt. Pastorek notifying the school system of the approval of our balance budget. She announced that the Pointe Coupee Parish school system will be hosting the Cohort 3 -Day 2 Trailblazers Meeting on Thursday, December 16, 2010 at the Julien Poydras Building from 9:00 a.m. - 3:30 p.m.  The Cohort includes Avoyelles, City of Baker, Iberville, West Feliciana and Pointe Coupee.  Strategies to achieve the nine state Goals and Planning for Success are the topics. The Livonia High School Choir will perform from 5:00 p.m. - 5:30 p.m. prior to the December 16, 2010 regular meeting.  Oaths of Office will be administered after the meeting.  Kelly Major will be taking pictures after the meeting. Superintendent D=Amico stated that she and her husband would like to invite the Board members and their spouse/guest to an informal Christmas social in her office/Board room after the School Board meeting next Thursday night.

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Adjournment.  On a motion by Mr. Thomas Nelson, seconded by Mrs. Debbie Collins, the meeting adjourned at 7:18 p.m.

 

POINTE COUPEE PARISH SCHOOL BOARD

                                                                                               

___________________________________
Chad Aguillard, President

 

___________________________________
Linda D'Amico, Superintendent/Secretary-Treasurer