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Sebago School District Committee Minutes 05-08-18
Sebago School District
School Committee
Minutes of Meeting
May 8, 2018
Sebago Town Hall

1.      Call to order and Roll Call

The meeting was called to order by Tina Vanasse, Chair, at 6:32 pm

Members of the Sebago School Committee present:
        Joe McMahon
        Tina Vanasse
        Wendy Newcomb
Guests present:
        Superintendent Marc Gendron
        Allen Crabtree
Phil Lowe
Claudia Lowe
Anne Mc Mahon
Deborah Howard
Ann Burns
June Allen
Donelle Allen
Jim Libby
Audrey Douglass
Jerry Holt
2.      Pledge of Allegiance

3.      Agenda Adjustments

        There were none.
4.      Minutes of last meetings

Tina made a correction to the minutes of the April 5, 2018 meeting.  Joe McMahon made a motion approve the amended minutes from the April 5, 2018 meeting   2nd by Wendy Newcomb.  Minutes approved.  

Joe made a motion to approve the minutes from the May 1, 2018 Budget Workshop, 2nd by Wendy, minutes approved.

5.      Public Comments

There were none

6.      Superintendent’s Report

Marc thanked the advisory committees for their hard work.  He has met with all of them except for the Policy Committee who are waiting for the policy draft report from MSMA.  He is focusing his efforts on developing the operating budget first, then will work on staffing.  Time constraints and public notice requirements are driving his activities at the present.

The process has been started with the Department of Education for several elements of the new school, including pre-Kindergarten, procuring a T-1 data line, grants, E-Rate application, etc.  We missed the deadline for an E-Rate grant application but will be ready for the next cycle, where we will request funding for infrastructure and accessibility to purchase new routers for the school.  If successful, 30-40% of the cost would be covered by federal grant funding.

Marc spoke about staff who are now shared with MSAD61.  If 50% or more of their time is with Sebago, these staff will automatically be transferred to SES.  Less than that will not.  Wendy asked about the art and Title 1.  Marc said that we will be hiring an art teacher and a Title 1 Administrator.

He commented that he has spent ten days of his contract so far.

Joe said that he has set up an e-mail account with the name “” and if anyone involved with the Sebago school wishes should contact him for an e-mail account/address.  The names on the account will be the first initial of the person’s first name and the first two initials of their last name.  There was a discussion about using private e-mails.  Anyone interested in the new e-mail should contact Joe.

Phil presented a financial report.  Balance as of the end of April in the transition fund account is $23,932.45, with two payables outstanding - $2,711 for Dr. Eastman and $201.50 for a supply item.  The net balance will be $21,019.95.

Phil said that Tina can sign off on invoices when he is not here, and invoices would then be submitted to the Town for payment.  She has the same authority as Phil to do this.

7.  Consent Agenda

There were no items, and the Committee asked that this item be removed from future agendas.

8.  Old Business

Phil asked the status of the bus issues.  Marc said nothing has been done to resolve this issue yet.

9.  New Business

  • Name of the School System
There was discussion of the name that will be used for Sebago’s school system.  Marc said that the Board of Education had not assigned Sebago as an RSU, a SAD, nor a SAU.  We could be called the “Sebago Municipal School District”, or the “Sebago School Department” or the “Sebago School District.”  Joe felt that the “Department” name would be too close to the other Sebago Town Departments and felt it should not be used.  Tina also said the name should represent a degree of independence.  Phil wondered if having the title “Department” would have any financial advantages to join with the Town in obtaining insurance at a better rate.  Deb said that there is precedence for having an independent arrangement with the town and cited the Warming Hut leasing arrangement.

After additional discussion, Joe made a motion to use the title “Sebago School District”, 2nd by Wendy, approved by the Committee.

Marc suggested that the name of the Sebago School Board should be the “Sebago School Committee” to conform with general usage for similar entities in the state.  There was discussion and no objections, although Allen raised the point that the pending town elections are to elect two new members of the “Sebago School Board” as were the existing three members who were previously elected.  It is too late to change the election warrants for the June elections, so Tina suggested that this naming discussion be brought back at a future meeting after the June elections.

  • Adoption of CIPA policy – Computer and Internet Usage
There was discussion of the proposed CIPA policy that Marc presented.  The policy was prepared by MSMA at Marc’s request.  Joe suggested removing MSMA’s footnote disclaimer at the bottom of the policy.  All were in agreement.

Wendy made a motion to approve the amended policy, 2nd by Joe, approved.

  • Discussion of student transfers, agreements and student selection for outside transfers
Marc explained the difference between students moving into or from Sebago under Superintendent Agreements and Tuition Agreements.  There are two parts to the question of transfers that need to be addressed – Sebago students going to MS and HS in Lakes Region and other school districts, and Elementary students coming to Sebago.  There was considerable discussion on how the 80%-20% language in the MSAD61 withdrawal agreement would be implemented, and how students would be approved to go to another school district.  

Marc talked about elementary students coming into Sebago from other districts and cited the example of students from Baldwin who would pay a $3,431 fee per student.  Sebago students going to other districts would have little or no fees because of our zero state GPA funding, so a tuition agreement would have to be negotiated with other districts to take Sebago students.

Transfers to Sebago’s Kindergarten could have a critical effect on our operating budget.  Total students under 20 is no problem, more than 21 would require hiring an ed tech, and more than 29 would require hiring an additional teacher.

Donelle wanted to know how kids currently enrolled in SES from other districts would be affected.  Would they have a priority to stay at SES?  Marc said this would have to be worked out.  Marc suggested that a lottery system would probably be the fairest system to resolve this issue.

There was a discussion of how future school committee meetings will be conducted.  Marc cited his experience with other school boards and recommended a “tight” meeting where the public could comment only during the public comment period on the agenda, and the board/committee would not entertain public input during agenda items.  If a member of the public wanted to discuss something at a board/committee meeting they would have to make a request in advance of the meeting and have that item placed on the agenda.

Phil spoke about the advantage of having public input during meetings especially during these formative stages of a new school system.  Tina praised the input and involvement of the advisory committees and didn’t’ want to stifle their enthusiasm.  Marc said that the board/committee will need to undergo training on running their meetings and will order copies of the manuals for everyone.  Joe said that it is important that issues are discussed and public input is important.

Tina suggested that meetings could be conducted in a “loose” manner as they have been while the system is getting established, and after July a more “tight” protocol for meetings could be considered.

  • Future meetings
The following is the schedule for future meetings of the Sebago School District:

  • May 15, Tuesday – meeting with the Sebago Board of Selectmen
  • May 29, Tuesday – School District meeting at Town Offices
  • June 2, Saturday – Sebago Town meeting at Town Hall
  • June 12, Tuesday – Town elections and budget referendum
  • June 26, Tuesday – School District meeting at Town offices
  • July 24, Tuesday – School District meeting at Sebago Elementary School
  • August 15, Wednesday - School District meeting at Sebago Elementary School
  • August 28, Tuesday – School District meeting at Sebago Elementary School
Regular meetings will be scheduled on the 4th Tuesday of each month, with special meetings as required.  After July 1 meetings will be held at the Sebago Elementary School.

  • School Budget
Marc walked through the proposed school budget.  There has been a last-minute very large increase from MSAD61 for Special Education that Sebago will be levied, requiring some modifications to the proposed budget.   After modifications in both the revenue and expense sides of the ledger, the bottom line increase of $77,289, or 2.5% as previously proposed will not be affected.

Revenues –

  • Increase other revenues by $50,000 to $80,573 based on predicted MSAD61 transfers under the withdrawal agreement.  
  • Total estimated revues are $3,409.443.
Expenses –

  • Regular Instruction – reduce Regular Instruction Misc from $12,400 to $0, and PK-2 Program Mis from $12,000 to $0, total $1,849,955
  • Special Education instruction – increase Spec Ed Tuition to other Public Schools from $130,000 to $250,000, total $410,300
  • Other instruction – reduce Cocurricular Misc from $2,000 to $0, total $20,350
  • Students and Staff Support – no change except adding Nursing to Guidance Counselor Salaries.  Total $136,572.
  • System Administration – increase Superintendent Salary to include MSAD61 Superintendent payment, from $48,000 to $65,000.  Total $154,200.
  • School Administration – reduce principal salary from $83,000 to $63,000, total $162,650.
  • Transportation and buses – reduce Bus Contracted Services from $190,000 to $160,000, total $179,000.
  • Facilities Maintenance – reduce Elementary School Repairs and Maintenance from $57,040 to $42,040.  Total $189,640.
  • Debt Service – reduce Contingency from $5,000 to $0, total $262,376.
  • All other expenditures – reduce Transfers Out from $35,000 to $30,000.  Total $30,000.
  • Total estimated expenses - $3,409,443.
There was discussion about the projected budget.  Joe made a motion to approve the budget, 2nd by Wendy, budget passed.

Marc gave a power point presentation on the budget and requested comments.  The plan is to present this PPT at the Board of Selectmen meeting next week, and also at the Town Meeting in June.  The new budget numbers will be inserted to update the slides before these events.  Comments were supportive of the PPT.

10.  Communications

There were none.

11.     Adjourn

The meeting of the Committee concluded at 8:17 p.m.  following a motion by Joe McMahon and 2nd by Wendy Newcomb and approved by the Committee.

  • The next Committee meeting was scheduled for Tuesday, May 15, 2018 at 6pm with the Sebago Board of Selectmen at the town offices.