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School Board Minutes 02/06/2012

Regular Meeting
February 6, 2012

There was a Regular Meeting of the Lake Region School District on Monday, February 6, 2012 at Songo Locks School.


Jody Gray called the meeting to order.  Board members present were:       Janice Barter, Beth Chaplin, Cindy LeBlanc, Richard Merritt, Laurie Mondville, Donna Norton, Laura Ordway, Erica Pond Green, Trina Sanborn, and
Karla Swanson-Murphy.  Sherry Miller was excused and Philip Shane was absent.

Administrators present were:  Tonya Arnold, Kathleen Beecher, Lisa Caron,
Ted Finn, Deborah Howard, Andrew Madura, Guy Stickney, Joshua Sturk,
Cheryl Turpin, Sherrie Small and Kathleen Beecher, Superintendent of Schools.


A motion was made by Janice Barter, seconded by Beth Chaplin, to approve the agenda as presented.  Motion carried unanimously.


A motion was made by Janice Barter, seconded by Beth Chaplin, to approve the Minutes of January 9, 2012.  Motion carried unanimously.




Lake Region High School, Ted Finn

  • Students ended the trimester participating in Extended Learning Opportunities (ELOs).  Students who needed to complete their work continued with remediation.
  • Students will be performing the “Pirates of Panzance” from Thursday through Sunday.  Everyone was urged to attend.
  • Winter sports are wrapping up.
  • Colleen Conway-Nobert, the Coopertive Education Coordinator, took 26 students to the Job Corp in Bangor last week.
Lake Region Vocational Center, Rosie Schacht

  • Automotive and Construction students are in their new shops and are very happy.
  • The Cooperative Education Coordinator is in her new space.
  • An assembly was held on dating violence.  Activities were set to promote awareness of dating violence throughout the week including: Purple Ribbon Day, Purple Cupcake Day, and Purple Snack Day to share the seriousness of the issue in hopes of keeping students safe in relationships.

Lake Region Vocational Center, Rosie Schacht (continued)

  • Recruiting for next year will begin on Thursday.  Ms. Schacht will be visiting the classes of all the Sophomores of the two sending schools and Lake Region High School to give students an overview of the Lake Region Vocational Center program.
  • Students will also participate in a tour of the facility in April once the Vocational Center has moved into its new space.
  • There will be an Open House of the Educational Services Building.  Invitations will be sent out.
Lake Region Middle School, Tonya Arnold

  • The Grades 7 and 8 Band played at the State House on January 25 and they sounded great.
  • Seven students participated in the District II Festival at Oxford Hills.
  • Five students participated in the Vocal Festival in Windham.
  • Amy Grass won the Spelling Bee.
  • Megan Boos was selected to have her art work displayed at the Maine Education Office which will be on display from March 25 through the end of the summer.
  • A Teen Risk Health Panel was held for parents.  Staff members and outside agencies provided useful information.  As only two parents were in attendance, the questions and answers will be put on-line so parents will have access to the information.
Adult Education, Carrie Castonguay
  • The Adult Education Report, EF-M-39B, was submitted in January.
  • The second quarter of the Adult Education Family Literacy Report has been completed.
  • The Adult Education Advisory Committee met last week and there was good feedback.
  • The third Adult and Community Education session is complete.  The fourth session will begin after February vacation.
  • The Adult Education graduation will be on May 31.  
  • Sixteen students will begin the next CNA class on Tuesday, February 7.  The students will have all their classes at the same time and be split for their clinicals.  
  • A CNA instructor has been hired and a facility for a program has been set up in Fryeburg.
  • Ms. Castonguay has been asked to help set up the Barbara Bush Literacy Conference for next year.   


A motion was made by Janice Barter, seconded by Karla Swanson-Murphy, to accept the donation of $150.00 from the Heffernan Foundation for the 4-Star Writing Program at Stevens Brook Elementary School.  


Ms. Turpin explained that the 4-Star Writing Program encourages writing.  Students earn pins each time they submit a piece of writing.  Once they get four pins, they get a new hat.  The program costs $2,000 per year to support.  Donations are received and also the school has had some Spirit Days and students each bring in $.50.  The Kindergarten students just received their hats.

Motion carried unanimously.


Purchasing and Contracting:  Procurement Staff Code of Conduct

A motion was made by Janice Barter, seconded by Karla Swanson-Murphy, to approve the Purchasing and Contracting: Procurement Staff Code of Conduct policy, File Code DJH, as a first reading.  

Dr. Beecher explained that the District is required to have this policy in order to receive Title I funds.  The District would have had a negative rating if it was not working on this policy.  It has been reviewed by both the Personnel Committee and the Finance Committee.

Motion carried unanimously.

Purchasing Authority

A motion was made by Janice Barter, seconded by Karla Swanson-Murphy, to approve the revisions to the Purchasing Authority policy as a first reading.  

Dr. Beecher mentioned that the following changes were made:

  • Previous No. 3. was moved to No. 1 to remind employees that they need to follow the procedures set forth in the policy including when purchasing items on-line.
  • Job titles were corrected as needed.
  • Purchases over $250 need approval from the Superintendent or the Finance Coordinator.  Purchases under $250 can be approved by the administrator.
Motion carried unanimously.


A motion was made by Janice Barter, seconded by Karla Swanson-Murphy, to approve the Nepotism – School Staff policy, File Code GBCA, as a first reading.

Dr. Beecher mentioned that the topic was included on the agenda as someone had brought it to Mrs. Caron’s attention that Dr. Beecher’s brother was working for the District.  The current Nepotism policy was distributed.  It indicated that no one in the immediate family of the Superintendent could be employed by the District.  At the time Dr. Beecher’s brother was hired, Dr. Beecher was the Interim Superintendent.  The Leadership Team reviewed the policy and possible other cases where a family member would be supervising or evaluating a family member.  

There were three cases – two were brothers, and one was a father and son.  All were in the Buildings and Grounds area.  Mr. Madura does the evaluations of all the employees.  Dr. Beecher looked at policies from other districts and the proposed policy allows that no employee will be assigned to a position that is within the administrative supervision of a member of his/her immediate family.

Discussion included the following:
  • One situation occurred in the last 3 or 4 months where an employee moved into the position.  Mr. Madura sets the hours.
  • The Coordinator sets the kind of work the other employees are doing.
  • The Grounds person is being supervised by a family member from April 1 through the end of November.  This person does all the elementary schools, very little supervision is done.
  • The new policy is in the best interest of the Board.  The information needs to be disclosed to the Board at the time of hiring.
  • There was concern that a supervisor could abuse the policy and have a family member hired.
  • Policy should be timeless
  • Persons involved took themselves out of the interview process.  In one situation the family member at the time was a custodian not a Head Custodian.
  • There should be no exception to the rule – a family member cannot supervise another family member.
An amendment was made by Donna Norton, seconded by Laurie Mondville, to approve the policy as a first reading with the elimination of the “Exceptions” paragraph.  

Vote on amendment:  6-Yes, 5-No.  The amendment carried.
Vote on motion with the elimination of the “Exceptions” paragraph – 7-Yes,    4-No.  Motion carried.

Dr. Beecher will have counsel review the policy with this paragraph taken out prior to the second reading.

Job Descriptions

School Health Coordinator

A motion was made by Janice Barter, seconded by Karla Swanson-Murphy, to approve the School Health Coordinator job description as a first reading.

Superintendent Beecher mentioned that some of the discussion of the School Health Coordinator position would be in Executive Session.

The job description was brought to the Board as the position has been funded under the “Communities Putting Prevention to Work” grant.  The School Health Coordinator has been working in the District under this grant for the last year and a half.  A grant has been written to have the program continue for four more years and to be paid by Healthy Maine Funds.  If the District receives the money, the position then belongs to the District.  The job description was developed by Courtney Kennedy and reviewed by Mr. Madura and Dr. Beecher.

Motion carried unanimously.

Family Literacy Coordinator

A motion was made by Janice Barter, seconded by Karla Swanson-Murphy, to approve the Family Literacy Coordinator job description, 3.22.3, as a first reading.

Dr. Beecher explained that last summer when she was filling in for the Adult Education Director, she was surprised to find that the Adult Education staff’s contracts were not done in the same way as the District and they did not have job descriptions.  Carrie Castonguay wrote this job description with the help of the two employees in the position.  Both employees work part-time in this position and are also Adult Education Teachers.  Contracts will now be issued at the Central Office and a personnel file will be kept at the Central Office.  The positions will not be filled if grant money is not available.

An amendment to the motion was made by Richard Merritt, seconded by Laurie Mondville, to add that “This position is based on funding availability through the literacy grant.”  The amendment carried unanimously.

Vote on main motion with the amendment:  Motion carried unanimously.

Adult Education Instructor

A motion was made by Janice Barter, seconded by Karla Swanson-Murphy, to approve the Adult Education Instructor job description, 5.22.2, as a first reading.

Dr. Beecher mentioned that Ms. Castonguay worked with the Adult Education instructors to develop this job description.  This position is for the teachers that work with the 16-20 year old population.

Motion carried unanimously.


A motion was made by Janice Barter, seconded by Laura Ordway, to approve the appointment of Gloria Verrill as an Adult Education Math Teacher.

A concern was raised that the person is already a salaried employee in the District, would she need to be paid overtime to do this?

Superintendent Beecher explained that as this is a separate cost center in the District and it is comparable to two separate jobs she can do this and would not be paid overtime for this work.

Vote:  11-Yes, 1-No.  Motion carried.

A motion was made by Janice Barter, seconded by Karla Swanson-Murphy, to approve Jyselle Watkins as a Junior Class Co-Advisor for the Class of 2013.  Motion carried unanimously.

A motion was made by Janice Barter, seconded by Karla Swanson-Murphy, to approve Teal Carlson as a Junior Class Co-Advisor for the Class of 2013.  Motion carried unanimously.


Personnel Committee Reports

Donna Norton reported that the Personnel Committee met on January 30.  Items discussed included the Nepotism job description, some executive session items, the Purchasing and Contracting policy, and the student discipline complaint procedure.  The next meeting will be on February 27, 2012 at 5:00 p.m.

Curriculum Committee

Janice Barter reported that the Curriculum Committee met on January 18.  The Committee reviewed the following:

  • Ferry Beach Program – funding included some Rural Low Income funding and  fund raising at the school including a letter which was sent home to parents and a dance.  Students mentioned that the trip was worthwhile.  Kathleen Tragert reported that the curriculum tied in well.
  • There was a discussion on aspiration/motivation and how to improve on academics.  The next meeting will be on February 15 at 4:00 p.m. at the Central Office.
Facilities Committee

The Facilities Committee met prior to the Board meeting.  The following items were discussed:

  • Mr. Madura updated the Board on the sale of the white house.  It was decided to put it out to bid.
  • Mr. Madura shared a pie chart breaking down Community Use Funds spending.  The District is spending $50,000 on Community use and only $35,000 was budgeted.  The Committee recommended that $50,000 be included in the budget.
  • There was a discussion with a parent of a student at Songo Locks School regarding parking and traffic flow.  Mr. Madura has been working on this issue for the last few years and will take the new variables into consideration.   
The next meeting will be on March 5 at 5:00 p.m.

Finance Committee

Laurie Mondville reported that the Finance Committee met on January 24, 2012.  The following items were discussed:

  • The Balance Forward was changed from $1,000,000 to $750,000.
  • The Financial Update was tabled.
  • The flat budget being proposed does not include the bond amount that the voters approved and the Revolving Renovation Fund loan.
  • A powerpoint presentation was shared by Sherrie Small on the preliminary numbers for State Subsidy.  It is anticipated that the District will receive $1.7 million instead of the $834,000.

Finance Committee (continued)

The next meetings will be on Wednesday, February 8, 2012 at 6:00 p.m. at the Central Office, February 13 at 5:00 p.m. at the Central Office and February 15 at 6:00 p.m. at the Central Office.

Liaison Committee
The Liaison Committee will meet on Friday, February 10 at 7:00 a.m. at Lake Region Middle School.

Superintendent’s Report

  • The Preliminary Budget is currently at $26,016,439 which is an increase of $133,125 which represents the additional debt service for the High School and Vocational Center and the Revolving Renovation Fund loan.  The District may get some additional money in State subsidy.
  • The Finance Committee received the initial roll out of the budget.  It is very preliminary and Board members have not had a chance to review the documents.  People attending the meeting were told they were welcome to make comments tonight but to remember it is at the beginning of the budget process, and not the end.  
Update on the School Construction Projects – Andy Madura

The Educational Support Building is in use.  Punch lists are still being worked on.  The transportation space has been moved into, there is a wash bay for buses, a bay for repair of buses, an area for small engine repair, an Automotive Bay, and a Construction Bay.  The facility looks like it would out in the industry.

Lake Region High School/Vocational Center revisions include:

  • Office space and library
  • Bus wing renovated into classroom space
  • New section on the left side of the building for High School classrooms upstairs and Vocational classrooms downstairs.
  • The plan is to move in to these areas around April vacation.
  • Once moved, work will begin on the cafeteria and kitchen area and the guidance department will move into the white house while their space is renovated.
  • Everyone will be very happy to get into the renovated space earlier than anticipated.  

  • Erin White resigned as a Junior Class Advisor
  • Barbara Nichols resigned as a Special Education Technician, effective February 6, 2012.



A motion was made by Janice Barter, seconded by Karla Swanson-Murphy, to go into Executive Session for a personnel matter, pursuant to 1 M.R.S.A. 405 6.A.
Motion carried unanimously.

The Board went into Executive Session at 8:15 p.m. and returned to Public Session at 9:00 p.m.  


A motion was made and seconded to adjourn.  

The meeting adjourned at 9:01 p.m.


                                                                                     Date Approved