MINUTES

 

POINTE COUPEE PARISH SCHOOL BOARD

337 Napoleon Street

New Roads, LA  70760

 

REGULAR MEETING

Thursday, May 28, 2015

 

 

The Pointe Coupee Parish School Board met for their regular monthly meeting on Thursday, May 28, 2015, at 337 Napoleon Street in New Roads, Louisiana 70760. President Frank R. Aguillard, Jr., called the meeting to order at 5:30 p.m. 

 

Superintendent Linda D’Amico was requested to lead everyone in the Pledge of Allegiance to the Flag of the United States of America.

 

Mrs. Karen Shaw was requested to offer the invocation.

 

Board members present for roll call were: Chad Aguillard, Frank Aguillard, Brandon Bergeron, Bobby Jarreau, Leslie Ann Grezaffi, Anita LeJeune and Thomas Nelson.

 

School Personnel in attendance were:  Linda D’Amico, Superintendent; Bridget Berry, Supervisor of 21st Century Community Learning; Lacey Bueche, Supervisor of Technology; Lisa D’Aquila, Supervisor of Personnel; Donald Fuselier, Director of Maintenance and Support Services; Kate Guillory, Supervisor of Child Nutrition; Karla Jack, Supervisor of Federal Programs & Secondary Education; Kristy LaCoste, Supervisor of Early Childhood Education; Stephen Langlois, Chief Financial Officer; Karen Shaw, LaShonda Victorian, Supervisor of Child Welfare & Attendance; Supervisor of Head Start; Mary Wells, Supervisor of Special Education; Natalie Aguillard, Principal of Rosenwald Elementary; Myron Brown, Principal of Upper Pointe Coupee Elementary; Kim Canezaro, Principal of Valverda Elementary; Marcie Cazayoux, Principal of Rougon Elementary; and Stacy Gueho, Principal of Livonia High School.

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Expression of Sympathy.  On a motion by the entire Board and seconded by the entire Board, condolences were offered to the family of: 

 

Ms. Shirley Jones, mother of Ms. Yolanda Jones, pre-k teacher at Upper Pointe Coupee Elementary School.

 

Ms. Willie Lee Stirgus, sister of Mrs. Katherine Corner, second grade teacher at Upper Pointe Coupee Elementary.

 

Mr. Lynell Richard, brother of Jearl (J.C.) Richard, van driver/custodian, Central Office.

 

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President Frank Aguillard announced an item was left off of the consent agenda regarding minutes from the special meeting held on Thursday, April 23, 2015, and asked the wishes of the Board.

 

Added Item:  On a motion by Mr. Thomas Nelson, seconded by Mrs. Leslie Grezaffi, consider approval of the minutes from the special School Board meeting of Thursday, April 23, 2015, was added to the consent agenda as item C.5

 

Consent Agenda.  On a motion by Mr. Thomas Nelson, seconded by Mr. Brandon Bergeron, the following consent agenda items were adopted.

 

Consider approval of the minutes from the regular School Board meeting of Thursday, April 23, 2015.

 

Consider approval of the minutes from the special School Board meeting of Monday, May 11, 2015.

 

Consider approval of the minutes from the Executive Committee meeting of Thursday, May 21, 2015.

 

Approval of the Pointe Coupee Banner as the selection of the Official School Board Journal, as required by R.S. 43:150 and R.S. 43:174.

 

Consider approval of the minutes from the special School Board meeting of Thursday, April 23, 2015.

 

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Recognition of Teachers for Receiving Career Development Facilitator Certification. 

Mrs. Karla Jack, Supervisor of Secondary Education, announced five teachers from the Pointe Coupee Parish School District successfully completed the 120-hour National Career Development Facilitator training through the North Capitol Region Jump Start Grant.  She mentioned teachers in the North Capitol Region (Pointe Coupee, West Feliciana, and Zachary) are some of the 1st in the State of Louisiana to receive the NCDA Career Development Facilitator Certification and can serve as counselors in grades 8-12.  Aiman Bayoumi, Kristie Langlois, Lisa F. Jarreau, Kimberly Martin, and LaTosha Nelson were recognized with a Certificate of Achievement from the Pointe Coupee Parish School Board for their accomplishment.

 

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Head Start Supervisor’s Monthly Report.    On a motion by Mr. Chad Aguillard, seconded by Mrs. Leslie Grezaffi, the Board unanimously approved the Head Start monthly report, including the 2015 self-assessment, as presented by Supervisor Karen Shaw.

 

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End-of-Year Update Regarding the Child Nutrition Program.  Ms. Kate Guillory, Supervisor of Child Nutrition, prepared a PowerPoint presentation providing a quick update from the past school year.  Ms. Guillory stated participation in the Community Eligibility Program went well.  More students ate breakfast and lunch in the school cafeterias and the increase in USDA reimbursements helped to maintain not only a balanced budget, but a surplus that will allow her to purchase a few items for the cafeterias.  Mr. Thomas Nelson commended Ms. Guillory for the many good things she is doing with the child nutrition program.  Mr. Frank Aguillard stated that he concurs with Mr. Nelson and is excited to have a balanced school food service budget.

 

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Update Regarding ACT III Early Childhood Legislation.  Mrs. Kristy LaCoste, Supervisor of Early Childhood Education, and Mrs. Jeanette Vosburg, Childwise Consulting, Inc. presented information regarding Pointe Coupee’s Early Childhood Care & Education Community Network, a pilot project funded by a competitive grant awarded through the Louisiana Department of Education.  The Early Childhood Act calls for a definition of Kindergarten readiness, performance targets aligned to the state’s K-12 standards and a uniform assessment and accountability system for publicly funded programs, including a performance profile to provide clear actionable information for parents. The law also requires coordination between the Department of Children and Family Services, the Department of Health and Hospitals and the Louisiana Department of Education to streamline and align with the new system licensing standards for child day care centers, as well as a revamp of the current tiered rating system and associated School Readiness Tax Credits to be aligned with the new system.  Act 3, from the 2012 regular session of the Louisiana State Legislature, requires this new system be created by July 1, 2013 and implemented by 2015-16.  They were happy to report there are seven (7) licensed day care centers (Abundantly Blessed, Happy Hearts, Willie Mae’s, Kid-D- Land, Riverside East & West and Creative Steps) working on these initiatives.   It was announced that Pointe Coupee is the only parish in the state that had 100% childcare owners and directors participating during the initial first year, which speaks volumes regarding Early Childhood in our school district.

 

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Board Member James Cline arrived at 5:57 p.m.

 

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Monthly Financial Information.    Mr. Chad Aguillard made a motion to accept the monthly financial information that was prepared by Chief Financial Officer Stephen Langlois.  The motion was seconded by Mr. Thomas Nelson.  The motion carried.

 

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Approval of Budget Revision for Child Nutrition Program.    Ms. Kate Guillory announced there is a higher surplus than before in the school food service account and is asking the Board to consider approval of a budget revision.  Mr. Brandon Bergeron, Chairperson of the Finance Committee, stated the Finance Committee recommends approval of the revision.

 

On a motion by Mr. Brandon Bergeron, seconded by Mr. Thomas Nelson, the Board voted to approve the budget revision for the Child Nutrition Program.  The motion carried.

 

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Approval of Budget Revision for General Fund, One-Cent Sales Tax, and at Risk Funds.  Chief Financial Officer Langlois stated although the school system has not reached the 5% threshold difference required by the state for a budget revision, he would like to make the budget cleaner for audit purposes.  Mr. Brandon Bergeron stated the Finance Committee recommends the revision.

 

On a motion by Mr. Brandon Bergeron, seconded by Mr. Thomas Nelson, the Board voted to approve the budget revision for the General Fund, One-Cent Sales Tax and at Risk Funds.  The motion carried.

 

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Adopt Resolution to set Millage Rates for the 2015 Tax Year.  Chief Financial Officer Langlois stated millage rates are set annually and announced the rates.  Mr. Brandon Bergeron stated this agenda item is routine in nature and the Finance Committee recommends approval of the Resolution.

 

On a motion by Mr. Brandon Bergeron, seconded by Mrs. Leslie Grezaffi, the Board voted to adopt the following resolution:

 

RESOLUTION

            BE IT RESOLVED, that the following millage(s) are hereby levied on the 2015 tax roll on all property subject to taxation by Pointe Coupee Parish School Board:

MILLAGE

 

            Constitutional                                                                                  4.54 mills

            Special Parishwide Schools                                                            11.96 mills

            Bond and Interest District 10                                                             5.18mills

                                               

            BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the proper administrative officials of the Parish of Pointe Coupee, State of Louisiana, be and they are hereby empowered, authorized, and directed to spread said taxes, as hereinabove set forth, upon the assessment roll of said Parish for the year 2015, and to make the collection of the taxes imposed for and on behalf of the taxing authority, according to law, and that the taxes herein levied shall become a permanent lien and privilege on all property subject to taxation as herein set forth, and collection thereof shall be enforceable in the manner provided by law.

 

            The foregoing resolution was read in full, the roll was called on the adoption thereof, and the resolution was adopted by the following votes:

 

            YEAS: Chad Aguillard, Frank R. Aguillard, Jr., Brandon Bergeron, James M. Cline, Leslie Grezaffi, Bobby Jarreau, Anita LeJeune, and Thomas Nelson

            NAYS: None

            ABSTAINED:  None

            ABSENT:  None

 

CERTIFICATE

            I hereby certify that the foregoing is a true and exact copy of the resolution adopted at the board meeting held on May 28, 2015, at which meeting a quorum was present and voting.

 

            New Roads, Louisiana, this 28th day of May, 2015.

                        ________________________________________

 

Discussion and/or Action Concerning Request for Annual Leave.    On a motion by Mr. Chad Aguillard, seconded by Mr. Thomas Nelson, the Board voted to specifically authorize all accumulated annual leave for a twelve-month employee of the Pointe Coupee Parish School Board according to policy GBRK.  The motion carried

 

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Approval of Funds from the Construction Bond Account to Pay for Chiller/Boiler at Pointe Coupee Central Facility.   Mr. Stephen Langlois explained when the School Board approved the project for the chiller and boiler at the Pointe Coupee Central facility, the Board voted to pay with funds generated from timber sales from the 16th Section Property; unfortunately, the high water on the Mississippi River prevented harvesting.  Therefore, an item was placed on this month’s agenda to consider approval to use funds from the construction bond money at Guaranty Bank to pay for the project that has already started with regard to the replacement of the chiller/boiler.  Mr. Langlois stated the $246,000 can be repaid when the timer is sold and also reported there is a possibility the school system will receive $80,000 more in timber revenue than originally expected.  Mr. Brandon Bergeron stated it is the recommendation of the Finance Committee to use the construction bond account fund for this project.

 

Mr. Thomas Nelson made a motion to approve the use of funds from the construction bond account at Guaranty Bank to pay for the chiller/boiler at the Pointe Coupee Central Facility.  Mr. Chad Aguillard seconded the motion.  Mr. James Cline requested a roll call.

 

            YEAS:  Chad Aguillard, Frank R. Aguillard, Jr., Brandon Bergeron, Leslie Grezaffi, Bobby Jarreau, Anita LeJeune and Thomas Nelson

            NAYS:  James M. Cline

            ABSTENTIONS:  None

 

The motion carried by a 7-1 vote of the Board

 

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Discussion and/or Action Regarding the Appraisal Received for the Surplus Property Formerly Used as LaBarre Elementary.  Mr. Donald Fuselier announced that an appraisal was received on the property formally used as LaBarre Elementary School.  Mr. Stephen Langlois explained this item was placed on the agenda not to sell but to strictly to declare it as surplus property.  Mr. Frank Aguillard mentioned the School Board will have to do something with the building; the roof is caving in and it is an eye sore.

 

Mr. Brandon Bergeron made a motion to declare the former LaBarre Elementary School Board property owned by the School Board as surplus property.  The motion was seconded by Mr. Thomas Nelson.  The motion carried.

 

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Ratification Regarding the Appraisal Received for the Surplus Property Formerly Used as the School Board Office.  Mr. Stephen Langlois explained the School Board had received an appraisal for the property formerly used as the School Board Office (1662 Morganza Highway) last month; however, this month he is requesting the Board to strictly declare it as surplus property.

 

Mr. Brandon Bergeron made a motion to declare the property formerly used as the School Board office surplus property.  Mr. Thomas Nelson seconded the motion. The motion carried.

 

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Approval to Advertise Bids for Surplus School System Equipment.  Mr. Donald Fuselier stated the list of items no longer being used in the school system was placed on BoardDocs and is requesting approval from the Board to advertise for sealed bids to get rid of the surplus equipment.  He stated the advertisement will be published for three weeks and the bid opening will be in July.

 

On a motion by Mr. Thomas Nelson, seconded by Mrs. Leslie Grezaffi, the Board approved advertising bids for surplus equipment as presented by Mr. Donald Fuselier.  The motion carried.

 

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Revisions to the Pupil Progression Plan Regarding EOC and Transitional Ninth Grade Program.  Mrs. Lisa D’Aquila, Testing Coordinator for the Pointe Coupee Parish School system, placed information regarding proposed revisions to the Pupil Progression Plan on BoardDocs.

 

On a motion by Mrs. Anita LeJeune, seconded by Mrs. Leslie Grezaffi, the Board accepted the revisions to the Pupil Progression Plan to cap the EOC at 15% and to define the transitional 9th grade program offered by the district without summer retesting as proposed and presented by Mrs. Lisa D’Aquila.  The motion carried.

 

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Discussion and/or Action Concerning Visitors on School Campuses.    Mr. Cline stated it was his request to place an item on the agenda regarding visitors on campuses (policy KM) as he thought the policy may need to be revised because he does not want individuals coming on campuses invoking fear and intimidation.  It was mentioned that every school has a resource officer on the campus and the current policy allows principals the authority to have individuals that interrupt the educational process escorted off the campus and file charges.  Mr. Cline stated that he would like to remove this item from the agenda.

 

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Discussion and/or Action Regarding Accepting or Denying the Type I Charter Application submitted by Educo, Inc.   Superintendent D’Amico announced Pam Wall, evaluator, reviewed the application, submitted by Reginald Browhow, CEO, Educo Learning, Inc., to establish a Type I Charter School in Pointe Coupee Parish.

 
Mrs. D’Amico read excerpts from the report received at 4:28 p.m. this afternoon.

 

The charter school application demonstrates high expectations for both teachers and students in a literacy-rich, “college prep” environment.

 

The strongest sections of the application are the framework for financial management through the use of a service provider; the programming components and options for special populations (students with disabilities, Section 504 and ESL students).  Both a social worker and a guidance counselor are slated for hire in year one for 161 K-2 students, which demonstrates an understanding of the social supports Pointe Coupee public school families may need.  Goals for students and staff are admirable.

 

However, the applicant has important and specific decisions remaining that make it difficult to evaluate the quality of the instructional program and the chances for success.  The application may be too ambitious in some regards and is too general.  Instructional materials and models are not identified in the context of research that would indicate success with rural schools with a large percentage of high poverty, minority students, many of whom are performing below grade level.  There are weaknesses in what the LA Department of Education (LDOE)  refers to as the “Theory of Change” – a clear connection between the root causes of the problems that the school seeks to address, i.e., poverty as stated by the applicant, and “the underlying theory that supports the use of the selected model.”

 

Although the curricula will be LDOE approved and Common Core aligned, the instructional framework lacks specificity in regard to an integrated scope and sequence.  There are a plethora of assessments, tests, and diagnostic tools listed in the application for assessing K-2 students that may leave too little time for enriched teaching and learning.  There is an unusually large administrator to teacher ratio and little evidence of strong early childhood expertise to ensure success in the first year with K-2 students.  The five full time classroom teachers (part of a staff of 20 in year 1) would need to be in team meetings and staff development almost daily to comply with the strategic design for instructions.  There are some disconnects between the staffing chart and position titles in other sections.

 

More information is needed regarding the relationship between the charter school and Advance Innovative Education, as both the CEO and a Board member are listed online as Board members of that organization.  While the support of organizations with strong educational expertise is an asset for charter schools, what are current plans for contracts between PCCPA and AIE?

 

Thus far, each Board member and identified staff member are working and/or living outside of Pointe Coupee parish.  Because of the application’s emphasis on relationships between students, their families, and the school, what is the plan for incorporating more staff from the parish?  Both the Code of Conduct and the personnel policy have yet to be developed.

 

In spite of presenting strong guiding principles for the establishment of PCCPA, the applicant needs to incorporate more specifics to allow a fair determination of the quality of the education to be provided.

 

There was no mention of partnerships with existing early childhood programs to help ensure students are ready for kindergarten.

 

Some of the budgetary concerns regarding salaries for administrators in year 1, with only 161 students and five full-time classroom teachers; $15,000 a month for rent does not include security or custodial, which are both notable additional expenses.

 

Superintendent D’Amico stated the report is thorough.  A discussion among School Board members transpired.  It was mentioned we are dealing with the same thing as when Pointe Coupee Central High School was taken over in 2008 by Advanced Baton Rouge (ABR) and adamantly opposed to granting a Type I Charter.  Mr. Chad Aguillard stated he didn’t hear whether or not the charter applicant has a track record and obviously didn’t list their record in review. One major reason for opposition is the lofty goals without presenting evidence of what was done before.  It will be a financial strain on the school system and besides the organization can’t demonstrate their past educational experiences.

 

Mrs. Leslie Grezaffi mentioned there was no need for an outside company to come in; our teachers and principals are doing a good job and we don’t have enough children to share.

 

Mr. Frank Aguillard stated he can recall a hostile takeover a few years ago that cost this school system millions of dollars. The reviewer noted the cost of this Type I Charter would be 1.8 million the 1st year and Mr. Aguillard stated he had spoken to our legislative delegation and they will testify in front of the BESE Committee to help stop approval of this charter.

 

Mrs. Anita LeJeune stated she will piggy back on the statement that BESE should be held accountable; ABR was not successful in our parish or in any other charter school it took over in the state and there should be a track record of success before approving a charter.

 

Mr. James Cline stated the previous charter school operated in our parish from 2008 to 2013 using local funds and state MFP dollars for a program that didn’t work.  Also questioned was who is going to pay for the $15,000 building rental fee for the Type I Charter School site.

 

Mr. Thomas Nelson made a motion to deny the application for a Type I Charter School in Pointe Coupee submitted by Educo, Inc.  The motion was seconded by Mrs. Leslie Grezaffi.  A roll call was requested.

 

            YEAS:  Chad Aguillard, Frank R. Aguillard, Jr., Brandon Bergeron, James Cline, Leslie Grezaffi, Bobby Jarreau, Anita LeJeune and Thomas Nelson

            NAYS:  None

            ABSTENTIONS:  None

 

The motion carried, by an 8-0 vote of the Board

 

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Remarks from Superintendent D’Amico. Superintendent D’Amico welcomed Superintendent-Elect Kevin Lemoine.  She announced Bridget Berry, the 21st CCLC Supervisor, has been recognized by the State for an excellent 21st CCLC program and creative ideas.  As requested, Mrs. Berry presented some of her ideas to colleagues across the Southeast Region (TX, LA, Ark, OK, and NM) last Thursday in a statewide webinar where Louisiana was in the spotlight.  Mrs. D’Amico mentioned the 21st CCLC’s summer program began this week at all school campuses and will continue until the end of June and encouraged everyone to join the fun learning environment offered by this program.  Supt. D’Amico reminded everyone of the summer work hours.  The Central Office will be open from 7:30 a.m. – 4:45 Monday-Thursday (closed on Fridays) beginning Monday, June 1, 2015 and ending Friday, July 17, 2015, with the exception of the week of Monday, June 29, 2015 – Thursday, July 2, 2015, when the hours will be 8:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. and closed on Friday, July 3, 2015.  She announced Superintendents and Teacher Leaders from our district and school districts across Louisiana will attend the State Collaboration meeting in New Orleans June 3-6, 2015; she also mentioned several employees will be on vacation and out of the office next week.

 

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Discussion and/or Action Concerning Contract with Superintendent-Elect.   President Frank Aguillard announced that he, Vice-President Leslie Grezaffi and Attorney Robert “Bob” Hammonds met with Superintendent-Elect Kevin Lemoine on Thursday, May 21, 2015, to negotiate the terms of Mr. Lemoine’ s contract.  Mr. Frank Aguillard mentioned School Board members had a week to review the proposed three-year contract as well as the objectives/targets submitted by Mr. Lemoine and he received no telephone calls from School Board members requesting to revise the proposed contract.

     

Mr. Thomas Nelson made a motion to accept the negotiated employment contract as written and to appoint Mr. Kevin Lemoine as Superintendent of Schools for the Pointe Coupee Parish School Board effective July 1, 2015 through June 30, 2018.  The motion was seconded by Mrs. Anita LeJeune.  The motion carried by a unanimous vote of the Board.

 

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Adjournment.  On a motion by Mrs. Anita LeJeune, seconded by Mr. Chad Aguillard, the meeting adjourned at 6:55 p.m.

 

 

POINTE COUPEE PARISH SCHOOL BOARD

_________________________

Frank R. Aguillard, Jr.

President

_________________________

Linda D. D’Amico

Superintendent