LINCOLN PARISH SCHOOL BOARD Ruston, Louisiana
LINCOLN PARISH SCHOOL BOARD
Tuesday, August 7, 2012 6:00 p.m.
The Lincoln Parish School Board met in Regular Session on Tuesday, August 7, 2012, at 6:00 p.m. at the Lincoln Parish School Board Office, 410 South Farmerville Street, Ruston, Louisiana. Members present were Ms. Debbie Abrahm, Mr. Otha Anders, Mr. Michael Barmore, Ms. Lisa Best, Mr. Curtis Dowling, Mr. Danny Hancock, Ms. Lynda Henderson, Mr. Trott Hunt, Mr. Eddie Jones, Mr. George Mack, Jr., and Mr. Joe Mitcham.
Ms. Mattie Harrison was absent. President Anders called the meeting to order, and Mr. Barmore gave the invocation. Ms. Best led in the Pledge of Allegiance to the American flag, and Mr. Anders welcomed guests to the meeting. Upon a motion by Ms. Best, seconded by Mr. Hunt, the Board unanimously voted by roll call to adopt the agenda as amended adding an item of New Business: Change order #3 for the ag shop and New Tech at RHS. Upon a motion by Ms. Henderson, seconded by Mr. Mitcham, the Board unanimously voted to approve the minutes of the Regular Session held on July 2, 2012, as submitted. As the parish's policy for promotion and retention of students, the Pupil Progression Plan (PPP), is based on Bulletin 1566, Bulletin 741, and Act 750 of the Louisiana State Legislature. Paula Pardue, Secondary Academic Coordinator, asked that revisions to the 2012-13 PPP be approved in order to be in full compliance with all state regulations. She indicated that an entire copy of the PPP was placed in board packets. Upon a motion by Mr. Barmore, seconded by Mr. Hancock, the Board unanimously voted to approve the revised Lincoln Parish Pupil Progression Plan. George Murphy, Business Manager, reminded Board members that each fall schools are allocated monies from the 1979 sales tax fund for library supplement ($2.50), classroom supplies ($3.75), office supplies and equipment repair/ purchase ($4.00), student services ($3.75), and debate and speech ($2.00). These funds are distributed on a per pupil basis and sent directly to the schools to be disbursed by the principal. He recommended sending the per pupil allotments shown above which are the same amounts as last year. Also to be included in the checks are the annual $120 per kindergarten teacher and monies for those schools that have a band program. If approved the total amount to be disbursed to the schools could be approximately $116,050. Due to the change in the configuration of the elementary schools in the Ruston District, it is likely that the numbers at some of the schools will change significantly. He asked permission to use enrollment numbers a short time after school begins instead of October 1, 2011. Upon a motion by Mr. Barmore, seconded by Mr. Jones, the Board unanimously voted to approve the fall allocations for school instructional supply money as outlined on the spreadsheet disseminated by Mr. Murphy. Pictures of construction on the ag shop and New Tech projects at Ruston High were narrated by Charles Owens, Director of Auxiliary Services, and Mike Walpole, architect. Mr. Owens said the parking lot at Choudrant High has not been completed but will be before the start of school. The faulty paint at Choudrant Elementary has been redone. He will monitor the new paint closely to make sure there are no problems with it. Cathi Boniol, Lincoln ACHIEVE Coordinator, showed board members the logo that had been created: 1-4-ALL, 4 schools…1 vision of excellence for all students. It had been used all summer to inform and communicate with the public about the revisioning of the four elementary schools in Ruston. A walk through tour of all four schools has been scheduled for parents, students and the public on Thursday, August 9, from 5:00 - 7:00 p.m. She invited everyone to attend. Moving forward with accountability in the school district and looking for ways to bump student performance to a higher level, Superintendent Danny Bell is making some changes. One of those includes getting some of the very best school leaders to serve as Principal Leaders. Using School Performance Score results, he is selecting leaders who have shown great success by having “B” schools or better for at least two years. They will help the other principals explore ways that they might take on leadership, ideas with working with faculties, and looking at data to hopefully gain greater success. Principal Leaders and their schools are:
Hillcrest Elem. Shavonne Price
Ruston Elementary Lisa Mangum
Glen View Elementary
Cypress Springs Elem.
Ruston Jr. High Sonja Fuller
I. A. Lewis
In preliminary calculations by the Accountability Coordinator, he said it appears that two of the districts' schools will be moving from a “B” to an “A”. Although the schools face challenges, Mr. Bell has high expectations and wants all schools to score at least a “B” if not an “A”. He is committed to moving the district forward. It was time for the sales tax collection report for the period ending July 31, 2012. George Murphy indicated that the report had been condensed from three pages to two. Sales tax collections for the first month of the 12-13 fiscal year were $1,184,439 which was down 4.22% compared to the same month last year. Recoveries through audits were $12,903 which was down 73% from last year. Collections in the '67 and '79 fund were $538,382, and $646,057 was collected in the '93 and '00 sales tax fund. The primary reason for the decrease for the month was a drop in oil and gas extractions. One faculty retirement, 13 faculty resignations, 4 points of reference, 1 sabbatical request, 8 faculty recommendations, 1 bus driver retirement, 1 bus driver resignation and 7 bus driver recommendations were reported by Mary Null, Director of Curriculum, Instruction, and Special Programs. They were:
1. Retirement of Sharon St. Andre, agriculture at Ruston High, effective July 9, 2012.
2. Resignation of the following faculty: William Fields, special education teacher at Dubach High, effective July 20, 2012; Matthew Willis, social studies/P. E. teacher at Dubach High, effective July 24, 2012; Rachel Rowe, teacher at Hillcrest Elementary, effective July 11, 2012; Dave Anderson, P. E. teacher at I. A. Lewis, effective July 23, 2012; Allison Brister, teacher at Ruston Elementary, effective July 23, 2012; Wilma Outley, paraprofessional at Ruston High, effective June 28, 2012; Danny Roberts, P. E. teacher at Ruston High, effective July 30, 2012; Edward Smith, in-school-suspension teacher at Ruston High, effective July 30, 2012; Rachel Simmons, Louisiana studies teacher at Ruston Junior High, effective July 19, 2012; Lodie Brewer, secretary at Ruston Junior High, effective July 10, 2012; David Richard, math teacher at Simsboro High, effective July 10, 2012; Rhea-Claire Richard, English teacher at Simsboro High, effective July 10, 2012; and Mildred Smith, truancy through the District Attorney's office, effective July 30, 2012.
3. Points of Reference/ Transfers of the following: Jay Seal, from Ruston Junior High to P.E. at I. A. Lewis replacing Dave Anderson, effective August 13, 2012; Polly Durrett, from Cypress Springs to ELA at I. A. Lewis replacing Amy Pilgreen, effective August 13, 2012; Thomas Freeman, from Ruston Junior High to agriculture at Ruston High replacing James Sandifer who was on sick leave, effective July 9, 2012; and Faye Dade, from the Central Office to secretary at Ruston Junior High replacing Lodie Brewer, effective August 2, 2012.
4. Professional sabbatical request for the second semester of 12-13 effective August 13, 2012, from Courtney Martin, math teacher at Ruston High.
5. Employment of the following effective August 13, 2012, unless otherwise noted: Lori Kelly, math teacher at Choudrant High, replacing Amy McGuire who promoted; Terri Belknap, speech teacher at Ruston Elementary, replacing Shaundra Winbush who resigned; Lane White, English teacher at Ruston High, replacing Lindsay Bolton who resigned; Landon Wade, agriculture teacher at Ruston High effective August 9, 2012, replacing Sharon St. Andre who retired; Angel Meyers, special education teacher at Simsboro High, replacing Lisa Trussell who resigned; Cassie Maxwell, math teacher at Simsboro High, replacing David Richard who resigned; Amber McGee, English/language arts teacher at Simsboro High, replacing Rhea-Claire Richard who resigned; and Aleta Overby, science teacher at Simsboro High, replacing Sherry Ferrell who is deceased.
6. Retirement of Robert Griffin, bus driver in the Ruston area, effective September 1, 2012.
7. Resignation of bus driver in the Ruston area, Donnie Watson, effective August 1, 2012.
8. Employment of the following bus drivers effective August 17, 2012:
Ron Black, in the Ruston area, replacing Artie Runyon who retired; Ricky Bryant, in the Ruston area, replacing Joe Gaido who retired; Lucy Foster, in the Choudrant area, replacing Tammy Russell who resigned; Sherwood Payne, in the Ruston area, replacing Ron Flurry who resigned; Steve Theodos, in the Ruston area, replacing Donnie Watson who resigned; Tonique Torbor, in the Ruston area, replacing Steve Rhone who resigned; and Roger Moore, in the Choudrant area, replacing Ronald Baker who retired. Following a month of study, Mary Null asked members to approve twelve policy revisions, two policy additions and one deletion.
Upon a motion by Mr. Hancock, seconded by Mr. Jones, the Board unanimously voted to approve revisions to: School Superintendent Legal Status (ABD), School Board Ethics (BH), Employment of Superintendent (CED), Contracts and Compensation (GBA), Recruitment (GBC), Employment of Personnel (GBD), Assignment (GBE), Probation (GBG), Tenure (GBL), Dismissal of Employees (GBN), Reduction of Personnel (GBNA), and Student Transfer and Withdrawal (JBCD); the addition of Public Conduct on School Property (KGA); the addition of Evaluation of the Superintendent (CEI) and Foreign Exchange Students (JQK); and the deletion of Superintendent Powers and Responsibilities (CEB). As there were no accurate as-built plans for Ruston High, Charles Owens voiced that an existing catch basin drain line and the main gas supply line were located in the ag shop construction area. In order for the additions to be constructed as drawn, it will be necessary to modify the existing catch basin and relocate the gas supply line. Those items would cost $7,825.53 and would extend the contract time by two days. Mr. Owens presented change order #2 on the project detailing the cost and the time extension.
Upon a motion by Ms. Harrison, seconded by Mr. Jones, the Board unanimously voted to approve the change order for the work discussed above for the RHS ag shop and New Tech project in the amount of $7,825.53 and extending the contract time by two days. It became evident after talking with the ag teacher and the principal at Ruston High that a covered storage area was greatly needed. Mr. Owens asked the Board to consider adding an extension to the work/storage area for Building “A” of the new ag facility which would cost $122,455.01 and extend the contract time by thirty days. The ag teacher, Mark Milstead, was in attendance and stressed the need for the additional work and storage area. Upon a motion by Mr. Mitcham, seconded by Mr. Jones, the Board unanimously voted to approve change order #3 for the RHS ag shop and New Tech project adding a covered storage area to Building “A” at a cost of $122,266.01 and extending the contract time by thirty days. The State Legislative Auditor's Office requires all Louisiana governmental units to complete a System's Survey & Compliance Questionnaire and provide it to the independent auditors at the beginning of the financial and compliance audit, George Murphy reported to the Board. He requested approval of the questionnaire. Upon a motion by Ms. Best, seconded by Mr. Hunt, the Board unanimously voted to approve the System's Survey & Compliance Questionnaire for the fiscal year ending June 30, 2012, as presented. Mr. Murphy called attention to the revised budget for 11-12 in order to adjust the original budget to the actual amounts. Last year a loss of $787,355 was anticipated; however, the final figure turned out to be $922,586. Fund balances at the current time total $33,859,511. That figure will be used for the beginning budget next month. Upon a motion by Ms. Henderson, seconded by Mr. Hunt, the Board unanimously voted to accept the revised budget for the 11-12 fiscal year. The time had arrived to adopt millages for 2012. Mr. Murphy said all property in Lincoln Parish was reassessed in 2012 by the Tax Assessor. The Parishwide and Ruston Districts increased in valuation, and the Simsboro, Dubach and Choudrant Districts decreased in valuation. The Parishwide M&O millages of 10.25 and 8.49 and the Ruston District M&O millage of 2.61 for 2011 were reduced to 10.24, 8.48, and 2.53 respectively for 2012. The Constitutional tax millage of 4.23, the Parishwide Special M&O millage of 4.94 and the Parishwide Special Repair & Equipment millage of 4.94 remained the same as last year. The Simsboro, Dubach, and Choudrant M&O millages remained the same as last year. He asked the Board to adopt a Resolution, which he read in full, to levy the millages. President Anders announced that this was the time specified for a public hearing and for public comments regarding tax millages for 2012. Hearing no comments or questions, he asked for the Board's pleasure regarding the matter. Upon a motion by Mr. Jones, seconded by Ms. Best, the Board unanimously voted by roll call to adopt the resolution to levy millages for 2012 as follows: Resolution
Constitutional Tax (La. Const. Art. VII, Sect. 13) 4.23 mills
Special Maintenance & Operation 4.94 mills
Special Repair & Equipment 4.94 mills
Parish wide Maintenance & Operation 10.24 mills
Parish wide Maintenance & Operation 8.48 mills
Ruston School District #1 2.53 mills
Simsboro School District #3 2.99 mills
Dubach School District #5 3.25 mills
Choudrant School District #6 3.00 mills
General Obligation Bonds Ruston SD #1 11.50 mills
General Obligation Bonds Simsboro SD #3 8.50 mills
General Obligation Bonds Choudrant SD #6 20.00 mills
Voting by roll call FOR the above motion: Debbie Abrahm, Otha Anders, Michael Barmore, Lisa Best, Curtis Dowling, Danny Hancock, Lynda Henderson, Trott Hunt, Eddie Jones, George Mack, Jr., and Joe Mitcham.
Voting AGAINST the motion: None.
Absent and not voting: Mattie Harrison.
In a Report of the Superintendent, Mr. Bell:
1. Expressed his appreciation to the staff and school personnel as they prepare for the start of school next week. Staff development has been ongoing for several weeks and will continue next week until the children arrive on Friday morning. The Back-to-School meeting at Ruston High School is scheduled for Wednesday, August 15, at 1:30. He invited members to attend.
2. Was happy to report the pre-k center is full with 260 warm bodies registered and a waiting list of others wanting to attend. They have a technology lab of sorts in one room which is quite a remarkable first experience for our youngest students. State Superintendent John White wants the districts to have quality pre-k programs, and Mr. Bell believes Lincoln will measure up with standards that will be imposed, and the students will be adequately prepared for kindergarten.
3. Communicated that transportation issues between the 4 elementary schools in Ruston are being handled and the pairing of those schools is progressing quite well. He gave credit to Ms. Null and staff who have been tirelessly working with parents registering new students, requesting transfers, and needing bus transportation.
4. Said he wanted to publically express his amazement over the support from the community and especially businesses for our public schools. He recognized Dr. Janie Humphries with the Sunrise Kiwanis Club who has a passion for early childhood and is very active in many respects. Summing it up, he appreciates the many volunteers and church members who are stepping up and offering their resources and time. He noted that Pastor Maurice White with Zion Traveler Baptist Church recently brought a $1500 check from the church to help indigent children in public schools with backpacks, school supplies, and uniforms. He believes the community leaves no child behind when it comes to the start of a school year. He shared a huge THANK YOU to the remarkable community on behalf of the staff, principals, and teachers. After comments from a board member and upon a motion by Ms. Best, the meeting adjourned at 7:00 p.m.
Danny L. Bell, Secretary
Otha L. Anders, President
1td: August 26, 2012