March 2014 Board Minutes


REGULAR BOARD OF EDUCATION MEETING

   Monday, March 10, 2014                         

 The Putnam City Schools Board of Education of Independent School District No. One of Oklahoma County, State of Oklahoma, met in regular session Monday, March 10, 2014 at 5:00 p.m. in the Board room at the Administration Building, 5401 NW 40th, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. The agenda and meeting notice were posted on Friday, March 7, 2014 at 4:30 p.m. in accordance with 25 O.S. § 311.

 

Members present: Board President, Gail LoPresto, Vice President, Cindy Gibbs, Bren Smith, Becky Haliburton and Tammy West, members; Superintendent Dr. Fred Rhodes; Sandy Lemaster, deputy clerk; and others.

ITEM #1 –SPOTLIGHT ON OUR SCHOOLS, MOMENT OF SILENCE AND PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE – WINDSOR HILLS ELEMENTARY.

Bill Pierce, Principal, Shanda Brody, Assistant Principal, and Heather Graham, PEAK teacher presented a video highlighting Windsor Hills Elementary and led the Pledge of Allegiance and Moment of Silence.

ITEM #2– CONSIDERATION OF AND VOTE ON MOTION TO APPROVE THE PROCLAMATION DECLARING MARCH YOUTH ARTS MONTH IN PUTNAM CITY SCHOOLS.

Jason Memoli, Gift and Fine Arts Coordinator for the District, recognized District Chairs for all areas of Fine Arts – Kimberly Scott, Steve Whitfield, Cristy Gosset, JoAnn Struck, Anne Guevara, Susan Clothier and Rose Mary Baker. Cristy Gosset, Elementary Music Chair read the proclamation declaring March Youth Arts Month in Putnam City. Anne Guevara, introduced Putnam City West Silver Strings students who performed before the meeting began: Nate Mencke, Santana Spangler-Day, Noah Bowles, Daphanie Hardi and Sydney Borkins. Capps Middle School drama students performed two numbers from “Annie”. Performers included: Vanessa Cabello, Delaney Johnson, Abby Brown, Emily Brown, Korrigan Powers, Briana Meza, Zyriah Jordan, Kirsten Smith, Becky Terek, Kylinn Dixon, Alexis Butler, Kashaylah Green-Howard and Chloe Carieker with Alyssa Duncan playing the part of “Annie”. Ashley Cain is the drama teacher at Capps.

Western Oaks Middle School art teacher, Rui Sukut, introduced Krysten Harris a 6th grade student whose artwork entitled “Cubistic Portrait” was selected to donate to the Board of Education to hang permanently in the administration offices. Miss Harris presented the artwork to Board President, Gail LoPresto. One of Amanda Davis’ art students at Northridge Elementary, Anshika Kataria, competed in the Oklahoma Arts Educators Association Flag Contest and was selected as the winner of the state contest. The flag Anshika designed will represent the State of Oklahoma and will be flown at the National Arts Educators Association office in San Diego, CA.

Becky Haliburton made a motion to approve the proclamation declaring March Youth Arts Month in Putnam City Schools.  Tammy West seconded the motion.  Vote:  Haliburton, aye; Smith, aye; West, aye; Gibbs, aye; LoPresto, aye.

ITEM #3– INFORMATION AND STAFF REPORTS.

 Ø Adjustment to 2013-2014 School Calendar – Assistant Superintendent Dr. April Grace

Dr. April Grace presented the Administration’s recommendation for contract make-up days due to inclement weather. The recommendation is that 4 make-up days be added to the end of the contract dates and that 2 additional days are made up by extending the contract day by 30 minutes for 30 days beginning March 31st. Employees were surveyed and their feedback was incorporated in the recommendation process. The Administration also recommended that the Board exchange one make-up day for time spent by staff working open houses, literacy nights and other after-school events. Students will not need to make-up any days at this time because they are still exceeding the minimum required 1080 hours of instruction.

TEM #4– PUBLIC PARTICIPATION.

Angela Stogsdill, Cooper Stogsdill, Adrienne Pitcock, Laura Anne Pitcock, Kim Hudson Dudley, Cindy Carrasco, Terrence Thompson, Lori Dorsett, and C. Robert Dorsett each addressed the Board regarding repercussions from the bomb threat at Western Oaks Middle School on February 17th.

ITEM #5 – Consent Agenda: All of the following items, which concern reports and items of a routine nature normally approved at board meetings, will be approved by one vote unless any board member desires to have a separate vote on any or all of these items. The consent agenda consists of the discussion, consideration, and approval of the following items:

a.       Minutes for regular board meeting February 24, 2014.

b.      Financial report and bimonthly bills for purchase order numbers 4-09012-094 through 4-10010-094 for the time period February 19 – 28, 2014 for the 2013-2014 school year.

c.       Activity Fund Transfers.

d.      Obsolete and/or Surplus Items.

e.       Special Services Contract with Renee Thomas, Physical Therapist ($8,000 from Grant funds).

f.       Fundraisers.

g.      Overnight Travel Requests.

h.      Out of State Trip:

1.      Putnam City Silver Strings students to Eureka Springs, Arkansas and Branson, Missouri June 9-12, 2014

2.      Hefner Middle School students to Arlington, Texas May 9, 2014.

i.        Retirements and resignations as listed on Attachment A.

 

Becky Haliburton made a motion to approve the consent agenda as presented. Bren Smith seconded the motion. Vote:  Haliburton, aye; Smith, aye; West, aye; Gibbs, aye; LoPresto, aye.

ITEM #6 – Consideration of and vote on recommendation of employment of new personnel and reassignments as listed ON ATTACHMENT A.

Becky Haliburton made a motion to approve employment of new personnel and reassignments as listed on Attachment A. Cindy Gibbs seconded the motion. Vote:  Haliburton, aye; Smith, aye; West, aye; Gibbs, aye; LoPresto, aye.

ITEM #7 – Consideration of and vote on motion to approve adjusted 2013-2014 school calendar.

Bren Smith made a motion to approve adjusted 2013-2014 School Calendar. Tammy West seconded the motion. Vote:  Haliburton, aye; Smith, aye; West, aye; Gibbs, aye; LoPresto, aye.

ITEM #8 – Consideration of and vote on motion to approve 2014 summer school programs.

Tammy West made a motion to approve 2014 Summer School Programs. Cindy Gibbs seconded the motion. Vote:  Haliburton, aye; Smith, aye; West, aye; Gibbs, aye; LoPresto, aye.

ITEM #9 – Consideration of and vote on motion to approve contract with carol kosnitsky for professional development for special education teachers. ($1,750 from grant funds)

Cindy Gibbs made a motion to approve contract with Carol Kosnitsky for professional development for Special Education teachers. Bren Smith seconded the motion. Vote:  Haliburton, aye; Smith, aye; West, aye; Gibbs, aye; LoPresto, aye.

ITEM #10 – SUPERINTENDENT REPORT.

1.  Oklahoma Writing Contest: We congratulate Jonathan Richards, an 8th grader at Capps Middle School, who won first place in the Oklahoma Writing Projects’ “Write to Win”, short story contest. His work will be published in the Oklahoma Anthology of Winning Writing. He is invited to attend a writing conference and awards presentation on March 27th at Oklahoma City University. We appreciate the efforts of his 8th grade teacher, Jennifer Prince, who encourages students to enter contests such as this.

2.   Two District Students Named Academic All-Staters: Kooper Taylor of Putnam City North and Nathan Weiwel of Putnam City West have been named to the 2014 Academic All-State Class by the Oklahoma Foundation for Excellence. Taylor and Weiwel are two of the 100 top public high school seniors in Oklahoma. The 2014 Academic All-State Class is the 28th to be selected by the Oklahoma Foundation for Excellence. Putnam City has the third-highest number of Academic All-Staters in Oklahoma, ranking behind Edmond and Tulsa. Each student will receive a $1,000 merit-based scholarship and a medallion. The All-Staters will be recognized at the foundation’s 28th annual Academic Awards Banquet on Saturday, May 17, in Norman.

3.   Academic Bowl: Joy Bowes, gifted / talented specialist, reports that the Hefner Middle School Quiz Bowl Team placed third at the Oklahoma Junior Academic Bowl Association’s regional competition. They will now compete for the state championship at the University of Oklahoma on April 12. We wish them great success!

4.   Windsor Hills’ Teacher to Japan: Mr. Bill Pierce, principal, has announced that Windsor Hills’ second grade teacher, Liz Whitaker, has been selected to participate in a teacher exchange program between the United States and Japan this summer. Ms. Whitaker is one of only a few candidates selected across the United States. She will attend conferences in both California and Tokyo this summer and work with other teachers to learn more about the global culture. She will have the opportunity to grow professionally in the areas of education, culture, sports, science and technology. We congratulate Ms. Whitaker for this achievement and look forward to hearing more after she returns.

5.   Red River Rivalry: Yes! Believe it or not, there is also a Red River Rivalry in the academic world. Mrs. Shirley’s math class at Windsor Hills recently competed in the “Think Through Math Red River Rumble” against Texas classrooms and earned the title of MVP class. The class is one of only four Oklahoma classes with this distinction. Windsor Hills received the Think Through Math grant this year and Mrs. Shirley’s class has taken full advantage of the program, completing approximately 74% of their classroom goal.

6.   2nd Annual Science Olympiad Competition: Putnam City gifted and talented students, for the second consecutive year, were provided an opportunity to compete in the Elementary Science Olympiad. Putnam City is the first district in the state of Oklahoma to provide this event. Specific STEM activities for students included events such as Bridge Building, Reflection Relay and Circuit Wizardry. Students started preparing for this event early in the school year and were able to compete this last Saturday at Putnam City High.

7.   High School Band: High school bands recently took part in district solo and ensemble contests. Putnam City North’s band had 20 soloists and 18 ensembles earn superior ratings and the opportunity to take part in state competition. The band as a whole earned 185 superior medals. Putnam City West had 7 soloists and 8 ensembles earn superiors and a spot in state competition, with a total superior medal count of 68. Putnam City High had 7 soloists and 8 ensembles earn superiors and the chance to compete at state competition, with a total superior medal count of 49. The state solo and ensemble contest will take place at OSU in April.

8.   DECA: Twenty-six students from Putnam City North High School attended the 71st Annual DECA Career Development Conference in mid-February in Tulsa. Eight students earned state recognition. Emily Boaz won first place in Principles of Business Management and Administration; Courtney Duckett took first place in Professional Selling; Angela Roche earned second place in Food Marketing Series; Henry Thomas brought home a second place in Principles of Finance; Tiana Sykes and Ashleigh Woody took fourth place in Buying and Merchandising Team Decision Making; and Marhia Mitchner and Kamri Douglas finished in fifth place in Buying and Merchandising Team Decision Making.  Putnam City West also competed. Spencer Winston was in the top five in Quick Service and Anthony Newman was in the top five in Principles of Business Management and Administration. 

9.   Multicultural Education Teacher of the Year: Wendi Tejada, ESL teacher at Apollo Elementary School, was recently named Oklahoma’s Multicultural Education Teacher of the Year by the University of Central Oklahoma’s Multicultural Institute. Criteria of the award include excellence in multicultural education and diversity and being a positive role model who promotes multicultural and diversity concepts.

10. Art Awards: Congratulations to art students Yana Dyachkova and Savannah Lyne from Putnam City North High School, who submitted work to the Innovations High School Art Competition sponsored by the art department at the University of Science and Arts. Ms. Dyachkova’s acrylic, “On the Edge of Destiny,” won one of just 10 Judge’s Choice Awards in the competition. Ms. Lyne’s mixed media piece, “Imperfection,” earned an award of merit. Their work is on display in the 3rd floor art gallery in Davis Hall on the USAO campus in Chickasha through March 14.

11. Poetry Contest: Denisse Garcia of Putnam City West competed in the finals of the state “Poetry Out Loud” competition on March 5 in Tulsa. Ms. Garcia finished second, winning $100 for herself and $200 for the school to use in purchasing poetry. Poetry Out Loud is a national arts and humanities education program for high school students designed to engage young people with poetry through memorization and recitation. The Oklahoma Humanities Council sponsors the state program in cooperation with the Oklahoma Arts Council, the National Endowment for the Arts, and the Poetry Foundation. Congratulations to Ms. Garcia on her accomplishment!

12. State Basketball Playoffs: We congratulate all of our basketball teams for a great season. We are especially proud of the Putnam City North Girls’ Team and the Putnam City West Boys’ Team for a very successful season. Both teams will be playing in the State Tournament this week. Putnam City North Girls play Edmond Santa Fe Thursday in Skiatook. Putnam City West Boys will compete against Muskogee in Catoosa Thursday evening.

ITEM #11 – COMMENTS BY BOARD MEMBERS.

Becky Haliburton recognized Cary Simmons, a 30+ year employee of the district, and congratulated him on his reassignment to Director of Maintenance. She thanked Jason Memoli for the fine arts presentations saying that arts are near and dear to her heart. She assured the public speakers that addressed the Board that their comments were heard. Mrs. Haliburton also recognized Downs Elementary for winning the district’s Science Olympiad competition and the Putnam City North girls and Putnam City West boys basketball teams who have advanced to the quarter-finals of the State Tournament. She also invited everyone to attend the Putnam City North vs. Yukon baseball game at the Chickasaw Bricktown Ballpark on Thursday, March 13th. Tickets are available through Putnam City North and a portion of the proceeds goes to the baseball program.

Bren Smith thanked the administration for providing a creative solution for contract make-up days. She said Putnam City High’s production of “The King and I” was outstanding and featured students from Capps Middle School and Arbor Grove, Coronado, Northridge, Central, Will Rogers and Rollingwood Elementary schools as well.

Tammy West also expressed appreciation for the district’s commitment to fine arts which had been a blessing to her children and provided them opportunities to further their education. She was impressed with both “The King and I” and Putnam City West’s “Sound of Music” productions saying they were excellent and students and staff did a phenomenal job. She enjoyed Literacy Night at Lake Park and recognized Sodexo who donates food and water to many district events and Feed the Children who donated books so every Lake Park student could take one home. Mrs. West also enjoyed the Black History Month “Keeping the Dream Alive” event at Tulakes Elementary and the Oklahoma Read Across America Guinness World Record event at Hilldale Elementary. She also recognized Capps Middle School for their newsletters they are sending out to 5th grade students who will be attending Capps next year.

Cindy Gibbs said she is proud to serve in a district where fine arts are strongly supported especially when some districts have chosen to cut their arts programs. She also recognized the staff that organized the Science Olympiad saying that she had heard from a patron who had remarked that the event was extremely well organized.

Gail LoPresto thanked Windsor Hills’ staff for their presentation. She also recognized Anne Guevara and Jason Memoli for their contributions to the fine arts programs in Putnam City. She complimented Dick Balenseifen for his leadership and said she is really seeing the benefit of having a district-wide Athletic Director. Mrs. LoPresto also recognized Buster Meeks for all the things he does behind the scenes for Putnam City West.

ITEM #12 – CONSIDERATION OF AND VOTE ON MOTION TO ENTER INTO EXECUTIVE SESSION FOR THE PURPOSE (1) OF CONFIDENTIAL COMMUNICATIONS WITH LEGAL COUNSEL REGARDING PENDING LITIGATION AND CLAIMS PURSUANT TO 24 O.S. § 307 (B)(4) AND (2) TO DISCUSS REEMPLOYMENT OF CERTIFIED ADMINISTRATORS PURSUANT TO 25 O.S. § 307 (B)(1).

Tammy West made a motion at 6:07 p.m. to enter into executive session for the purpose (1) of confidential communications with legal counsel regarding pending litigation and claims pursuant to 24 O.S. § 307 (B)(4) and (2) to discuss reemployment of certified administrators pursuant to 25 O.S. § 307 (B)(1). Becky Haliburton seconded the motion. Vote:  Haliburton, aye; Smith, aye; West, aye; Gibbs, aye; LoPresto, aye.

ITEM #13  – CONSIDERATION OF AND VOTE ON MOTION TO RETURN TO OPEN SESSION AND TO REQUEST THE BOARD CLERK TO RECORD THE MINUTES OF THE EXECUTIVE SESSION.

Becky Haliburton made a motion at 7:48 p.m. to return to open session and request the Board Clerk to record the minutes of the executive session. Bren Smith seconded the motion. Vote:  Haliburton, aye; Smith, aye; West, aye; LoPresto, aye.

MINUTES OF EXECUTIVE SESSION: Board members, Tammy West, Gail LoPresto, Cindy Gibbs, Becky Haliburton and Bren Smith met with legal counsel, Laura Holmes and Superintendent Rhodes in executive session for the purpose (1) of confidential communications regarding pending litigation and claims pursuant to 24 O.S. § 307 (B)(4) and (2) to discuss reemployment of certified administrators pursuant to 25 O.S. § 307 (B)(1).

No action was taken.

ITEM #14  – CONSIDERATION OF AND VOTE ON NEW BUSINESS.

There was no new business.

ITEM #15 – CONSIDERATION OF AND VOTE ON MOTION TO ADJOURN.

Becky Haliburton made a motion at 7:49 p.m. to adjourn.  Tammy West seconded the motion.  Vote:  Haliburton, aye; Smith, aye; West, aye; LoPresto, aye.