MINUTES

 

POINTE COUPEE PARISH SCHOOL BOARD

337 Napoleon Street

New Roads, LA 70760

 

REGULAR MEETING

Thursday, February 24, 2011

 

The Pointe Coupee Parish School Board met in a regular session on Thursday, February 24, 2011, at 337 Napoleon Street, New Roads, LA.  Mr. Chad Aguillard, President, called the meeting to order at 5:30 p.m.    

 

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

 

Mrs. Leslie Grezaffi led the Pledge of Allegiance to the Flag of the United States of America.

 

Attorney Larry Bossier offered the invocation.

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Expressions of Sympathy.  On motion by the entire Board and seconded by the entire Board, an expression of sympathy was offered to the families of:

 

Mrs. Loraine Robillard, a retired teacher, and the mother of Paul Robillard, a teacher at Livonia High School. 

 

Mr. Randy Pourciau, the brother of Stacie Myers, a bus driver for Rougon Elementary School.

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Recognition of Students of the Year.  Superintendent D'Amico presented plaques and certificates to the Elementary, Middle/Junior High, and High School Students of the Year.  The following students were recognized for their accomplishment:

 

Kathryn Langland, a fifth grade student at Valverda Elementary was recognized for being selected as the Elementary Student of the Year.  Kathryn is the daughter of Karen and Aren Langland of Maringouin, La.  Mr. Kenny Ramagos of People's Bank presented Kathryn with a savings bond.  Family members in attendance were introduced; pictures were taken.

 

Katelyn Wren, an eighth grade student at Rougon Elementary, was recognized for being selected as the Middle/Junior High School Student of the Year.  Katelyn is the daughter of Elise Ruth and Charles Wren of New Roads, LA.Mr. Wade O'Neal of Guaranty Bank presented Katelyn with a savings bond.  Family members in attendance were introduced; pictures were taken.

 

Rebekah Gueho, a twelfth grade student at Livonia High School, was recognized for being selected as the High School Student of the Year. Rebekah is the daughter of Kevin and Stacy Gueho of Livonia, Louisiana.  Mr. Keith Miller of Cottonport Bank presented Rebekah with a savings bond. Family members in attendance were introduced; pictures were taken.

 

Superintendent D'Amico thanked the local banks for their support of the Student-of-the Year program.

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                                                                  Consent Agenda

 

The following items are considered to be routine and are enacted with one motion. 

 

Mr. Thomas Nelson made a motion, seconded by Mr. Frank Aguillard, to approve the following consent agenda items.  Unanimously carried.

 

 

 

 

                                                             End of Consent Agenda

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Committee Meeting Reports.  Mrs. Anita LeJeune, Chairperson of the Consent Committee, scheduled a meeting for Tuesday, February 15, 2011.  It was reported that since the contract with First Student will expire on July 1, 2011, School Board members had requested that Superintendent D'Amcio contact several transportation vendors to submit proposals.  Mr. Tony Vidrene, a representative from First Student, was in attendance and presented an overview of the services the company plans to offer the school system with regard to contracted services.  Mrs. D'Amico requested that Mr. Vidrene not disclose contract proposal quotes due to fairness purposes regarding First Student. Superintendent D'Amico mentioned that the representative from Durham Bus Services was unable to present proposals due to a family illness. Therefore, an item will be included on the March 24, 2011 agenda regarding discussion/action regarding contracted transportation services effective July 1, 2011 through June 30, 2016. The Committee received copies of proposed polices that had been drafted by Forethought Consulting to be considered for revision due to the 2010 Acts of the Legislature.  Superintendent D'Amico also presented draft copies of proposed policy changes regarding bus drivers; extended sick leave; as well as reduction in force.  A discussion followed regarding the proposed changes to be considered.  Superintendent D'Amcio told the Consent Committee that due to the recent bus accidents, additional bus driver training will be held at each school.  Mrs. D'Amico stated that she plans to accompany Mr. Donald Fuselier, Supervisor of Transportation, and Mrs. Debra Jarreau, Transportation Clerk, when they go to each training session to stress the importance of safely transporting our students to and from school each day.  Mrs. Debra Jarreau, Transportation Department Clerk, prepared a draft copy of the Pointe Coupee Parish School Board Bus Drivers' Accident Procedures and Preventability Document.

 

Mr. Kevin Hotard, Chairperson of the Finance Committee, scheduled a meeting for Monday, February 21, 2011.  The Committee discussed the revised budget regarding  the one-cent sales tax and proposed revisions to the 2010-2011 general fund budget.  A short discussion ensued regarding money received from FEMA and MFP funding.  Chief Financial Officer Gibbs presented the Education Jobs Fund Grant Budget for Fiscal Year 2010-2011.  It was explained that the Education Jobs Grant is the money the Louisiana Department of Education is giving local school districts to help them fill their budget shortfalls from a no growth formula factored into the State of Louisiana's MFP formula. Mrs. D'Amico stated that the projected budget for fiscal year 2011-2012 will be presented with and without the cuts that could be approved through Phase II of Superintendent D'Amcio's Cost Reduction Plan.

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Approval of Revision to Policies.  The Board was presented with polices that were revised due to Acts of the 2010 Legislature as proposed by Forethought Consulting and reviewed by Attorney Hammonds.  Mr. Hammonds' letter dated February 11, 2011, stated that as a general rule, the policy changes that were proposed by Forethought Consulting track the language of 2010 Acts of the Legislature and are acceptable as presented.  He, however, mentioned that there are a few proposed policies that warrant discussion and possible changes and outlined his comments in the letter regarding those policy changes.

 

On a motion by Mr. Thomas Nelson, seconded by Mr. Kevin Hotard, the Board voted to approve the revision of polices ABD, BBBC, CEB, CED, DFE, DFL, DJED, EBC, GBD, GBM, IDBB, JBCC, JCDAC, and JGFHA, reflective of suggested comments that were offered by Attorney Hammonds in his letter dated February 11, 2011.  Unanimously carried.

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Discussion/Action Regarding Revisions to Policies. Superintendent D'Amico reviewed the changes to the following policies regarding transportation: StudentTransportation Management (ED); Contracted Bus Services (EDAC); Student Transportation Management Emergency Guidelines and Procedures (ED-P); and School Bus Scheduling and Routing (EDD), and ED-R.  She referenced the Pointe Coupee Parish School Bus Drivers' Accident Procedures and Preventability Procedure Guide prepared by Debra Jarreau, Transportation Clerk.

 

A short discussion ensued regarding First Student Contract wording, tenured drivers, policy and procedures. 

 

Mr. Thomas Nelson made a motion to adopt the proposed revisions to the transportation policies as presented by Superintendent D'Amico: ED with the elimination of the word proximity, keeping the word seniority; EDAC, ED-P, EDD and ED-R.  Mr. Kevin Hotard seconded the motion. Unanimously approved

 

Superintendent D'Amico explained that revisions to the proposed sick leave policy include the exhaustion of sick leave, vacation, or annual time prior to being eligible for extended sick leave. 

 

Mr. Frank Aguillard made a motion, seconded by Mr. Brandon Bergeron, to accept revisions to the extended sick leave policy as presented by Superintendent D'Amico.   Unanimously carried.

 

Superintendent D'Amico stated that the proposed RIF policy strengthens the current policy that was used during the financial exigency plan by defining procedural steps that are to be taken.   

 

Mr. Frank Aguillard made a motion, seconded by Mrs. Leslie Grezaffi, to adopt revisions to the reduction in force policy as presented and recommended by Superintendent D'Amico.  Mr. Bergeron requested a roll call vote.

 

YEAS:                          Chad Aguillard, Frank Aguillard, James Cline, Leslie Grezaffi, Kevin Hotard, and Thomas Nelson
 

NAYS:                          Brandon Bergeron and Anita LeJeune
 

ABSTENTIONS:             None

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Discussion/Action Regarding the School Improvement Grant (SIG) for the District and for Rosenwald Elementary School.   School Board members had an opportunity to learn about the School Improvement Grant (SIG) and to ask questions, when they were presented with specific information at  the School Board Member Retreat held on Saturday, February 19, 2011.  Mrs. Karla Jack, Supervisor of Title I, made a short presentation. The School Improvement Grant (SIG) 1003(g) was created in 2001 under the No child Left Behind (NCLB) Act. School Improvement Grants are used to improve student achievement in Title I schools identified for improvement, corrective action, or restructuring to enable those schools to make adequate yearly progress (AYP) and exit improvement status.  To receive SIG funding, eligible districts must create a plan for intensive interventions in its lowest-performing schools in order to improve school culture and climate, strengthen quality of school staff and instruction, increase student achievement, and ensure availability of social services and community support for students.  Rosenwald Elementary and Upper Pointe Coupee Elementary are both eligible schools in Pointe Coupee due to academic watch status.  Rosenwald has a 62.7 and UPCE has a 69.7 School Performance Score, not 75.  Superintendent D'Amico mentioned that there are two proposals; one specific for the district and one for the schools.  Rosenwald is being targeted because it is an eligible Tier III-Title I school.  Participation in the grant would allow the school three years to implement the School Improvement Grant and move the school forward without penalties.  Mrs. D'Amico mentioned that the district selection of the Transformation Model consists of replacing the principal (if not replaced within the last two years); implementation of a new evaluation system The System for Teacher and Student Advancement (TAP) with student growth as a significant factor; identify and reward the teachers who are increasing student outcomes as determined by four evaluations and data desegregated by an eternally contracted company mandated by the TAP grant (CODE); observe, intervene, support, and follow-up with teachers shown as not making adequate student progress through the year that is derived from CODE data and student level reports; begin steps through due process for dismissal of teachers that show no growth after interventions have been implemented, implement strategies to recruit, lace and retain effective teachers, select and implement an instructional model based on student needs; provide job embedded professional development; use data to inform instruction. Budgeted amounts will be based on student enrollment.  The School Improvement Grant is not a program.  It is a funding source that will enable reforms like TAP and ELFA/Reading First to continue.

 

Board member Brandon Bergeron expressed his concerns regarding performance based pay and the measures that will be taken if a teacher is found to have cheated.  It was explained that there will be strong repercussions (i.e., all test scores could be voided by the state, etc.) Superintendent D'Amico explained that a special day is set aside to train teachers regarding testing procedures.

 

Board member Anita LeJeune questioned what the Superintendent's recommendation was at this time.  Mrs. D'Amico stated that her recommendation is to continue to write the grant with input for Rosenwald and the district and to continue looking to possibly include Upper Pointe Coupee Elementary prior to the grant deadline of March 11, 2011.  Mrs. LeJeune expressed her concerns regarding the grant that the Board is being requested to approve with fidelity.

 

Mrs. Jack stated that this is simply a draft and stated that the U.S. Department of Education provided guidelines regarding Teacher Incentive Fund (TIF) and mentioned the value added incentive proposal using TAP funding for Rosenwald and not general funds at this time.

 

Mr. Thomas Nelson offered the motion to adopt the Superintendent's recommendation to include the district and Rosenwald Elementary School in the School Improvement Grant, and to continue to study the feasibility of including  Upper Pointe Coupee Elementary. The motion was seconded by Mr. Chad Aguillard.

 

Mr. Brandon Bergeron stated that there are thirteen grants, and that Administration has to hold people accountable and improve their work ethic. The Administration should not need grants to hold people accountable.

 

Mr. Frank Aguillard stated that he expects to see test scores improve as he has confidence that Superintendent D'Amico will make sure that the programs are working.

 

Mrs. Anita LeJeune mentioned that ineffective teachers are to be removed according to the grant and the Board needs to be prepared to correctly implement.

 

Superintendent D'Amcio stated that the TAP method will improve the evaluation process, thus improving the overall instruction for children.  The district will benefit from the changes of professional development and the evaluation process and the program will be implemented with fidelity as it is the goal of the State to have effective teachers in each class.

 

Mr. Chad Aguillard stated that he wanted the record to reflect that he is in 100% support of the grant that will be administered by Superintendent D'Amcio to transform our schools. 

 

Mr. Brandon Bergeron stated that he would like to offer a substitute motion to receive further clarification "spelled out" regarding the procedural plan for Rosenwald and the rest of the district, prior to the March 11, 2011 deadline.  Mr. Kevin Hotard seconded Mr. Bergeron's substitute motion. A roll call vote resulted in the following:

 

YEAS:                          Brandon Bergeron, Kevin Hotard, and Anita Lejeune
 

NAYS:                          Chad Aguillard, Frank Aguillard, James Cline, Leslie Grezaffi, and Thomas Nelson
 

ABSTENTIONS:             None

 

The motion failed by a 5-3 vote. 

 

The original motion offered by Mr. Thomas Nelson, seconded by Mr. Chad Aguillard, to adopt the Superintendent's recommendation to include the district and Rosenwald Elementary School in the School Improvement Grant, and to continue to study the feasibility of including Upper Pointe Coupee Elementary resulted in the following roll call vote:

 

YEAS:                          Chad Aguillard, Frank Aguillard, James Cline, Leslie Grezaffi, Kevin Hotard, and Thomas Nelson
 

NAYS:                          Brandon Bergeron and Anita LeJeune 
           

ABSTENTIONS:             None

 

The motion passed by a 6-2 vote. 

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Discussion/Action Regarding School Time Lost Due to Inclement Winter Weather.  Superintendent D'Amico provided School Board members with a report to review of the actual total minutes adjusted for weather dismissal for all schools.  She included a copy of a memo from the Louisiana State Department of Education regarding instructional time requirements pertaining to length of the school day and year according to R.S. 17:154 and BESE Bulletin 741, Section 333.  

 

Mr. Kevin Hotard made a motion, seconded by Mr. Frank Aguillard, to allow Superintendent D=Amico to make an administrative decision regarding the employee time lost due to inclement winter weather.  Unanimously carried.

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Discussion/Action Regarding Monthly Financial Information.  Chief Financial Officer Gibbs presented the monthly financial information for January 2011.

 

Mr. Frank Aguillard made a motion, seconded by Mr. Brandon Bergeron, to accept the monthly financial information as reviewed by the Finance Committee and presented by Mr. Gibbs.  Unanimously carried.

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Personnel Actions. Ms. Lisa Huffaker, Supervisor of Personnel, presented personnel actions to be considered. 

 

Mr. Kevin Hotard made a motion, seconded by Mrs. Leslie Grezaffi to approve the following personnel actions:

 

A.  Retirement:

 

Joyce Turner, school food service technician, Upper Pointe Coupee Elementary School, effective 09.14.10

 

B.  Extended Sick Leave:

 

Rhonda Anderson, school nurse, Rosenwald Elementary, effective 02.12.11 - 02.27.11;

JoAnna Caesar, certified teacher, Livonia High, effective 02.08.11-03.04.11;

Patricia Christopher, school food service technician, Valverda Elementary, effective 02.10.11 (.18%);

Dawn David, certified teacher, Livonia High, effective 02.01.11 (.81%) - 02.02.11;

Karen Dunn, paraprofessional, Rosenwald Elementary, effective 01.25.11 0- 01.28.11;

Mary Fowler, certified teacher, Valverda Elementary, effective 01.26.11 (.99) - 03.18.11;

Sandra Herbert, certified teacher, Rosenwald Elementary, effective 02.02.11 - 02.04.11;

Linda Jarreau, certified teacher, Rosenwald Elementary, effective 01.03.11 - 03.17.11;

Vanesta Johnson, bookkeeper, central office, effective 02.03.11-02.23.11;

Shalanda Judge, Social Skills Strategists, Valverda Elementary, effective 02.10.11-02.13.11;

Martha LaCour, certified teacher, itinerant, effective 02.14.11 & 03.01.11;

Creasy Martin, paraprofessional, Livonia High, effective 01.27.11 & 01.28.11;

Donyella McVay, certified teacher, Rosenwald Elementary, effective 01.27.11-01.28.11;

Ingrid Nelson, certified teacher, Rosenwald Elementary, effective 03.11.11;

Tracy Norris, school food service technician, Valverda Elementary, effective 01.26.11, 02.01.11-02.02.11;

Gothalin Rayford, paraprofessional, Rosenwald Elementary, effective 01.26.11-01.31.11;

Terri Saizan, bus driver, Rougon Elementary, effective 03.04.11-05.27.11;

Demetrice St. Cyr, school food service technician, Rougon Elementary, effective 02.03.11 (.14)-03.04.11 and

Tamala Wilkerson, certified teacher, Rosenwald Elementary, effeictve 02.09.11-02.11.11

 

C.       Leave Without Pay

 

Vanesta Johnson, bookkeeper, central office, 02.24.11 - 06.30.11

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Approval of Revisions to the General Fund Budget for FY 2010-2011.   Mr. Thomas Nelson made a motion, seconded by Mr. Kevin Hotard, to approve the revisions to the general fund budget for FY 2010-2011 as presented and reviewed by the Finance Committee.  Unanimously carried.

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Ratification of State/Federal and Other Grant programs for FY 2010-2011.  Mr. Jared Gibbs prepared a binder of information for review regarding State and Federal Grants for Fiscal Year July 1, 2010-June 30, 2011.

 

On a motion by Mr. Thomas Nelson, seconded by Mr. James Cline, the Board voted to ratify the state/federal and other grant programs for FY 2010-2011.  Unanimously carried.

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Consider Awarding Baseball Facility Project Quotes as Part of Phase IV Projects.  Mr. David Mougeot, Architect, attended the Executive Committee meeting and provided a sketch of the baseball facility that is being proposed for Livonia High School as part of Phase IV QSCB projects.  As requested at the January meeting, proposals are being sought.  Superintendent D'Amico stated that the Second Innings Booster Club has officially received their non-profit status; however, the construction projects must be filtered through the school system, and quotes must be obtained.  She stated that the baseball facility project cannot be completed before the baseball season begins.  Games cannot be held when construction is in progress.   It was the recommendation of the Superintendent to table this item.  Due to the timing, Superintendent D'Amico recommended waiting until the bids for the air conditioning/heating units, and Educational Athletic Facility are secured to award the contract for building the Baseball Facility at Livonia High School.

 

Mr. Frank Aguillard made a motion to table awarding the baseball facility project quotes as part of Phase IV projects as recommended by Superintendent D'Amico.  The motion was seconded by Mr. Chad Aguillard. 

 

Mr. Kevin Hotard made a substitute motion, seconded by Mrs. Anita LeJuene to commit $30,000 to the baseball facility.  A roll call vote resulted in the following:

 

YEAS:                          Kevin Hotard and Anita LeJeune
 

NAYS:                          Chad Aguillard, Frank Aguillard, Brandon Bergeron, James Cline, Leslie Grezaffi, and Thomas Nelson 
                 

ABSTENTIONS:             None

 

The motion failed by a 2-6 vote 

 

The original motion offered by Mr. Frank Aguillard, and seconded by Mr. Chad Aguillard, to table awarding the baseball facility project quotes as part of Phase IV projects as recommended by Superintendent D'Amico resulted in the following roll call vote.

 

YEAS:                          Chad Aguillard, Frank Aguillard, Brandon Bergeron, James Cline, Leslie Grezaffi and Thomas Nelson
 

NAYS:                          Kevin Hotard and Anita LeJeune

 

ABSTENTIONS:             None

 

The motion to table passed by a 6-2 vote. 

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Head Start Supervisor's Monthly Report.  President Aguillard questioned why the Head Start Supervisor's agenda item was addressed toward the end of the meeting agenda.  It was mentioned that Mrs. Karen Holmes Shaw had requested to appear at the end of the Principals' meeting agenda whenever it was her time to present information regarding her program. The agenda item regarding the Head Start Supervisor's monthly report has also been addressed toward the end of each regular School Board meeting agenda, but if the Board would like it addressed earlier during the meeting, it will not be a problem to move the item up on the agenda.  Mrs. Shaw presented the February 2011 Supervisor's Monthly Report. 

 

Mr. James Cline made a motion to accept the Head Start Supervisor's Monthly Report as presented by Mrs. Karen Holmes Shaw.  The motion was seconded by Mr. Thomas Nelson.  Unanimously carried.

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Remarks from the Superintendent.   Superintendent D'Amico stated that all Central Office Supervisors have been assigned to schools where they are to visit grade level, cluster or study group meetings periodically and to complete weekly classroom walk throughs.  Mrs. D'Amico announced that a workshop, The Guide to State Assessment Training for Teachers, will be Saturday, February 26, 2011 from 8:30 a.m. - 11:30 a.m. at the School Board Office.  She also announced that she,  members of the Pointe Coupee Parish School Board, and Mrs. Oubre will be attending the 74th Annual Louisiana School Boards' Association Convention in Baton Rouge, LA  from Wednesday, March 2, 2011 through Friday, March 4, 2011.  She stated that she will leave an Administrator in Charge while away from the office, but can be reached by cell phone.

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Adjournment.  On a motion by Mr. Thomas Nelson, seconded by Mr. Frank Aguillard, the meeting adjourned at 7:55 p.m.

 

POINTE COUPEE PARISH SCHOOL BOARD
 

_________________________________

Chad Aguillard,

President

 

________________________________

Linda D. D'Amico, Superintendent

Secretary-Treasurer