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School Board Minutes 11/04/2013

Lake Region School District
Regular Meeting
November 4, 2013

There was a Regular Meeting of the Lake Region School Board on Monday, November 4, 2013 at 7:00 p.m. in the cafeteria at Songo Locks School.  

CALL TO ORDER AND ROLL CALL

Janice Barter called the meeting to order at 7:00 p.m.  Board members present were:  Debra Albert,           Stan Buchanan, Beth Chaplin, Karen Eller, Jody Gray, Paula Grace, Cindy LeBlanc, Joseph McMahon, Richard Merritt, Peter Morrison, Philip Shane, and Amina Meziani, Student Representative.  
Erica Pond Green was excused.

Administrators present were:  Tonya Arnold, Carrie Castonguay, June Conley, Ted Finn, Deborah Howard, Rosie Schacht, Guy Stickney, Sherrie Small, Joshua Sturk, Cheryl Turpin, and Kathleen Beecher, Superintendent of Schools.  

Others present were:  Barry Johnson, Julie Johnson, and Wayne Rivet.   

APPROVAL OF AGENDA

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

MINUTES

A motion was made by Richard Merritt, seconded by Beth Chaplin, to approve the Minutes of October 21, 2013.  Vote:  11-Yes, 0-No, 1-Abstention.  Motion carried.

STATUTORY UPDATE

Superintendent Beecher updated the Board on new Legislation from the last Legislative Session (126th Session) – New Rules, Timing, Impacts on Teachers and Staff or School Boards as follows:

Student Transfer Agreements

This is for Superintendent Agreements which are approved by Superintendents of both the sending and receiving districts and are “in the best interest of the student”.   Previously, if a request was denied, the Commissioner of Education could overturn the decision.  The new rulings are as follows:

  • A transfer may now be only to a receiving school unit that has that grade level.
  • The Commissioner of Education’s authority to reverse transfer decisions of Superintendents now requires additional review by the State Board of Education.
  • Superintendents, the Commissioner, and the State Board of Education all have to explain their decisions in writing (based on “best interest of the student” standard).
  • Dissatisfied parents or superintendents with the Commissioner’s decision may request a State Board review within 10 calendar days of receiving notification.
  • The State Board of Education will make a decision within 30 calendar days.
  • These rule changes went into effect on October 9, 2013.

Student Transfer Agreements (continued)

Effect on Teachers, Students, and School Board

  • These changes have no effect.
  • There are currently 13 students going out of the District and 11 students coming into the District.
  • The District has one tuition student from Raymond and one from Fryeburg.
Changes to Rules on Student Restraint and Seclusion (Chapter 33 Revisions)

Superintendent Beecher mentioned that last year there was a lot of push back from educators on the changes that had been made to the rules on student restraint and seclusion (Chapter 33).   

  • The broad definition of “physical restraint” has been modified by exceptions:
  • Physical Prompts:  “a teaching technique that involves physical contact with the student and that enables the student to learn, or models the physical movement necessary for the development of the desired competency”
  • Physical Escorts:  now means, “the temporary touching or hold for the purpose of inducing a student to walk to another location.” (includes assisting the child to his/her feet in order to be escorted)
  • Fights:  “a brief period of physical contact necessary to break up a fight” is now allowed
  • Seat Belts and Harnesses:  Now allowed when used as intended “during transportation of a child in a motor vehicle”
  • Comfort Holds:  “to calm or comfort a student and the student voluntarily accepts the contact” (cannot restrain a child’s freedom of movement)
  • Deflecting Bodily Movement:  any action that “momentarily deflects the movement of a child when the child’s movements would be destructive, harmful, or dangerous to the child or others” is now allowed.
These changes went into effect in April, 2013.

Teachers and Students

  • Teachers should be aware of the rule changes and the Original Chapter 33 rulings.
School Board

  • Changes to the Time Out Rooms and Therapeutic Restraint Policy, File Code JGA, are needed.
  • This will be referred to the Director of Special Services for guidance and suggestions and taken to the Curriculum Committee.
Suicide Awareness Training

This legislation is new from Governor Lepage.

  • ALL current employees are required to be trained beginning in the 2014-15 school year.
  • High school staff members have to complete training in the 2014-15 school year; elementary and    middle school staff need to complete training by the end of the 2015-16 school year.
  • Employees hired after that must complete training within 6 months of employment.
Suicide Awareness Training (continued)

  • Training must be 1-2 hours long and repeated every 5 years.
  • More extensive (1-day) training is required for 2-16 employees based on the size of the District – M.S.A.D. #61 needs a minimum of 4 staff members trained based on a 1501 – 2000 student population – the lawyers recommend 6 trained members so there will be 4 people available in the District at all times.
Teachers and Students

  • Staff members need to be aware of the training requirements and participate in the trainings when they are scheduled.
School Board

  • As employees, School Board members will need to be trained.
  • This may be an additional budgetary item (especially for the 2014-15 and 2015-16 school years).
Freedom of Access Statutory Changes
 
  • Acknowledgement of Record Requests:  receipt now required to be acknowledged within 5 working days of receipt of the request.
  • There is an obligation to provide time and cost estimates.
  • Failure to provide a response within 5 working days is also now considered a denial of inspection or copying and may be appealed to court.
  • The time limit requirement to appeal to the Superior Court has been changed from 5 to 30 days.
  • These changes became law on October 9, 2013.
Teachers and Students

  • Staff members need to be sure they immediately refer requests to the Superintendent of Schools or designee so we are able to respond within the 5-day time limit.
School Board

  • The Board may wish to adopt a policy related to Freedom of Access requirements.
  • Maine School Management Association has sent us a sample policy.
  • Review of the sample policy would start with the Personnel Committee if this is the will of the Board.
Proficiency-Based Diploma

  • The Legislature attached funding to this legislation for the 2013-14 school year so these requirements will now apply to the current class in Grade 8.
  • M.S.A.D. #61 was awarded $19,857 for this work to begin.
  • There are several allowable cost areas.  Deborah Howard, our Assistant Superintendent is leading this initiative.  
PUBLIC COMMENTS ON AGENDA ITEMS

None.

ADMINISTRATIVE COMMENTS

Lake Region High School, Ted Finn

  • The Junior Class and their advisors were commended for hosting “Trunk or Treat”.  Students from all four towns were invited.  Due to rain, it was held in the Gymnasium.  More than 400 students attended the event.
  • The Holly Berry Craft Fair was a huge succces.  Project Grad parents, the vendors, and the student groups that performed and participated were thanked.
  • Board members were invited to attend the Veteran’s Day Celebration on Thursday.  The Lakers in Action Academy will be working with Culinary Arts and the Law Enforcement Program to provide lunch and the program.  A dinner will be served at 11:45 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.   The Veteran’s Day Celebration will be held from 1:50 to 2:10 p.m.   
  • The “Let Your Voice Be Heard” group met twice during October and worked on the Dress Code policy.  As this is a District-wide policy, the group will need to meet with the Curriculum Committee to share their thoughts.  
  • The Principal’s Advisory Council, which is a group of parents, meet once a month to receive an update on what is happening at the high school and share any thoughts they have.  
Lake Region Vocational Center, Rosie Schacht

  • The students completed the Accuplacer exams.
  • An Advisory Committee dinner and meeting was held.  Each Vocational program has an advisory committee made up of business people and alumni.
  • Parent/Teacher Conferences – There will be 100% participation with parents.  If parents do not come in for conferencing, the staff will contact the parents by phone, email or mail.
  • The local Mason’s selected Kristen Huntress, sophomore, and Brandon Tibbetts, senior as Student of the Month.
  • The Pumpkin Auction was a huge success.  Over $1,000 was raised on 30 pumpkins.
  • Board members were invited to the Vocational Honor Society Induction Ceremony which will be held on Thursday, October 31 at 7:00 p.m.   Thirteen members of the student population will be inducted.
Lake Region Middle School, Tonya Arnold

  • The community was thanked for their support of the community fund raiser.  The school exceeded its goal.  Pick up  order will be available on November 13 between 3:00 and 5:00 p.m.  Those students who sold items will have a celebration with yogurt parfaits and prizes on November 20.
  • Vision Screenings will be conducted on Tuesday by Walmart and the school’s  Health Aide.
  • The Parent Teacher Partnership met last month regarding the use of infinite campus, web page and student lead conferences.  The student led conferences are going very well.  A more traditional option is available upon request.  The final evening is this Wednesday from 4:00 – 7:00 p.m. by appointment.  
  • Only 15 families needed a paper copy of progress reports, so paperless reporting is going well.  Teachers are creating Pathways to Success Plans with students who are struggling.
  • Enrollments:  124 – grade 6, 148 – grade 7, and 142 – grade 8 = 414 students.
  • The first trimester ends on November 26.
  • The grade 6 Boston trips were very successful and the parent chaperones and staff were thanked for their extra efforts.


Lake Region Middle School, Tonya Arnold  (continued)

  • The Lakes Environmental Association (LEA) is working with Kineo, Sugarloaf and the 6th grade teams.  The lessons are engaging and of high interest to the students.
Math teachers appreciated the work with Jim Curry on ways to improve vocabulary, rigor, and clarity of expectations to meet standards.
The Holiday Concert will be held on December 12 at 7:00 p.m.

Adult and Community Education, Carrie Castonguay

  • The deadline for course proposals was extended to Friday, November 15.
  • Information was received on the new High School Equivalency Program, Highset, which will be administered through the District Educational testing services.  (Previously the GED program.)
  • It explains all 5 tests, what’s involved, time limits, and rationale.
  • There are crosswalks due to the Common Core State Standards.
  • The scoring system will be different.  More information will be available later.  
ACTION ITEMS

Resignation of Board Representative

A motion was made by Jody Gray, seconded by Beth Chaplin, to accept the resignation of Elaine Heuiser as a Board Representative for the Town of Casco.  Motion carried unanimously.

Paul Grace, the newly elected Board member for the Town of Casco, was welcomed.

Request to Use Old School Bus

A motion was made by Jody Gray, seconded by Beth Chaplin, to approve the request to use an old school bus to do a mock bus accident.  

Mr. Madura explained that the Casco Bus and Fire Association would like to use the bus to do a mock accident.  He agreed to bring the request to the Board as long as the Association included the other three towns in the drill.  There will be a meeting on November 13, with representatives from each town, to put the drill together.  The bus has over 300,000 miles on it and a lot of rust.  It cannot get a sticker.  The event will take place around February vacation.

Motion carried unanimously.

Donations

A motion was made by Richard Merritt, seconded by Jody Gray, to approve the following donations as a block:  

  • The Yarmouth Fire Company donated a 1985 Fire Truck to the Lake Region Vocational Center valued at $12,500 for use in the Firefighter Program
  • Goodwill donated a $100 gift card to Lake Region Middle School to purchase clothes.
  • Target donated $50 to purchase snacks and juices for diabetic students and other needs at Lake Region Middle School.
  • Rite Aid gave a $20.00 gift card to Stevens Brook Elementary School to be used by the Drama Department.
Motion carried unanimously.

A motion was made by Jody Gray, seconded by Beth Chaplin, to approve the above block.  Motion carried unanimously.

Policies

Certification of Achievement

A motion was made by Richard Merritt, seconded by Beth Chaplin, to approve the revisions to the Certification of Achievement, File Code IKF-A, as a first reading.  Motion carried unanimously.

Board Attendance related Policies

A motion was made by Jody Gray, seconded by Beth Chaplin, to approve the revisions to Board Attendance, File Code BBAA, as a first reading.  Motion carried unanimously.

A motion was made by Jody Gray, seconded by Beth Chaplin, to approve the revisions to Board Declared Vacancy Caused by Absenteeism, File Code BBBDA, as a first reading.   Motion carried unanimously.

A motion was made by Jody Gray, seconded by Beth Chaplin, to approve the revisions to Board Director Unexpired Term Fulfillment/Vacancies, File Code BBBE, as a first reading.   Motion carried unanimously.

Job Descriptions

A motion was made by Jody Gray, seconded by Beth Chaplin, to approve the revisions to the Administrative Secretary job description, 2.27.3 as a first reading.  Motion carried unanimously.

A motion was made by Jody Gray, seconded by Beth Chaplin, to approve the revision to the School Secretary job description, 2.27.4, as a first reading, with the following changes:

Change 16. to read:  Performs all other duties as assigned.
GUIDANCE – second sentence – add “and outgoing”

Motion carried unanimously.

A motion was made by Jody Gray, seconded by Beth Chaplin, to approve the revisions to Clerk, Special Services Department, as a first reading with the following change:

Change 7. to read:  Performs all other duties as assigned.

Motion carried unanimously.

A motion was made by Jody Gray, seconded by Beth Chaplin, to approve the revisions to the Clerk job description, 2.28, as a first reading with the following changes:

  • Delete “accurate”
Change 14. to read:  Performs all other duties as assigned.

Motion carried unanimously.



Personnel

A motion was made by Jody Gray, seconded by Beth Chaplin, to approve Rachel Sevigny as a Physical Education Teacher at Lake Region Middle School, effective November 22, 2013, replacing Kathy Terhune who will be retiring.  Motion carried unanimously.

A motion was made by Jody Gray, seconded by Beth Chaplin, to approve the appointment of
Edward Stevens as a Day Treatment Support Technician at Lake Region High School, effective November 8, 2013, replacing Judith Floster who transferred to another school.  Motion carried unanimously.

A motion was made by Jody Gray, seconded by Beth Chaplin, to approve the appointment of the Additional Duty Positions.  Motion carried unanimously.

DISCUSSION ITEMS

Board Negotiating Team for Educational Support Personnel

Janice Barter asked Board members to let her know if they would like to be on the negotiating team for the      Educational Support Personnel Association’s upcoming negotiations.   Negotiations will be starting in January.

PUBLIC COMMENTS ON NON-AGENDA ITEMS

None.

INFORMATION ITEMS

Committee Reports

Liaison Committee

Cindy LeBlanc reported that the Committee will meet on November 18 at 5:00 p.m. in the Lake Region Vocational Center Conference Room.

Curriculum Committee

Deb Howard reported that the next Curriculum Committee meeting will be held on Wednesday,      November 18, 2013 from 3:30 – 5:00 p.m. at the Central Office.

Facilities Committee

Phil Shane reported that the Committee met prior to the Board meeting.  The following items were discussed:

  • Update on the wood pellet boiler.  Paperwork is currently being finalized.  It the boiler will not be working until next fall, it may be installed during the spring and summer.  
  • Update on the water at Songo Locks School.  The school will continue to use bottled water.  A grant for $120,000 has been approved.  It will need to go to the voters for approval.
  • Update on the study of the District’s enrollment
Facilities Committee (continued)

  • Review of the District’s Energy policy.
  • Discussion regarding the bus to be used for a mock drill.
  • Update on the maintenance budget for the upcoming year.
The next meeting will be on December 2 at 6:00 p.m.

Finance Committee

Joseph McMahon reported that the next meeting will be on Thursday, November 14.

Personnel Committee

Karen Eller reported that the next meeting will be on November 18 at 6:00 p.m. prior to the next Board meeting.

Superintendent’s Report

Enrollment report – The numbers for October 1 were shared.  There are currently 1,772 students enrolled in the District.   There are seven students attending charter schools; 7 at Baxter Academy and one student at Fiddlehead School in Gray.

EXECUTIVE SESSION

A motion was made by Jody Gray, seconded by Richard Merritt, to go into Executive Session to discuss a student matter, pursuant to M.R.S.A. 405 6. B.  Motion carried unanimously.

The Board went into Executive Session at 8:00 p.m.  Mr. Stickney, the student, and the student’s aunt were invited to attend.  Philip Shane and Beth Chaplin were excluded from the Executive Session.  

The Board returned to Public Session at 8:09 p.m.

A motion was made by Janice Barter, seconded by Richard Merritt, to readmit the student to school.  Motion carried unanimously.   

A motion was made by Jody Gray, seconded by Richard Merritt, to go into Executive Session to discuss a student matter, pursuant to M.R.S.A. 405 6.B.  Motion carried unanimously.

The Board went into Executive Session at 8:11 p.m. and returned to Public Session at 8:24 p.m.

ADJOURNMENT

A motion was made by Jody Gray, seconded by Beth Chaplin, to adjourn.  Motion carried unanimously.

The meeting adjourned at 8:25 p.m.

                                                                        ____________________________
                                                                                       Secretary
                                                                        ____________________________
                                                                                                                      Date Approved