SCHOOL DISTRICT 81 BOARD OF EDUCATION HIGHLIGHTS

| September 30, 2013

Reporting on the Board Meeting Held on September 18, 2013

In This Issue:

  • Balanced Budget for 2013-2014 Approved
  • Teachers align curriculum and assessment to the Common Core State Standards
  • Board of Education approves state-mandated hiring of Spanish Bilingual teacher for Kennedy School

Budget Hearing: There were no comments or questions from the public regarding the budget during the Budget Hearing. The balanced budget was presented to the Board of Education on September 18, 2013.

Consent Agenda Item for Discussion: Secretary Ewanio asked that the authorization to pay bills be removed from the Consent Agenda. She had budget concerns over lawyer fees from Ancel Glink, stating that if the bills continue to be around $10,000 per month, the District will not have enough going forward, and if that is the case, the budget would need to be adjusted.

Attorney from Ancel Glink, Margaret Kostopulos, stated that the bills are not indicative of the entire year, and she imagines the amount in the budget will be sufficient.  Member Desecki stated she wanted to be sure the charges were correct, and that Ancel Glink is not handling issues that should be handled by special counsel, and also that the District is not getting billed for duplicate work.  Ms. Kostopulos responded that the issues are not the same, and some of the charges will be explained in Executive Session, and mentioned that if there are questions regarding the attorney bills, the Board can always call Ancel Glink.  Member Flanagan stated that Ancel Glink would then charge the District for the phone call. Member Flanagan questioned if actions have been taken on the Board’s behalf, without all Board members’ knowledge. Ms. Kostopulos responded that no actions have been taken yet. The Ancel Glink attorney bills were removed from the Bills List, and then approved for payment separately by vote of 4 to 3.

 

 

 

 Public Participation:

  • President      Stachura stated that he had said that he did not know about a morale      problem with some of the teachers, but he did know about it, from the      resignation letters written by teachers.       However, these letters may have been politically motivated.  President Stachura stated that the Board      of Education does not deal with teachers, but with their one employee, the      Superintendent.
  • Resident and      Board of Education member Richard Flanagan asked the Board what it is      going to do about the District Office being held hostage by the large      amount of FOIA requests from a small group of individuals who want to      punish the district office, and are preventing the District administrators      and business office staff from doing their work.
  • Resident Rex      Morioka noted that his questions from last month’s meeting that were      posted on the District 81 website were inaccurate and not answered – the      questions were not about morale. He requested that the Board review the      videotape of the meeting to get the questions right.  Mr. Morioka also asked the following      questions:

1. At the end of the school year, the principals’ contracts are going to expire.

Does the Board plan on renewing the contracts?

2.  Since morale was brought up, what is the Board doing to help morale?

  • Resident Diane      Caffero stated that the responses to the public addressing the questions      posed to the Board at the last Board meeting were not timely or accurate.      Ms. Caffero addressed the Board with the following questions:
  1. What happened      to honest, transparent posting of Public Participation?
  2. Why did Mr.      Stachura use misinformation to delay the bidding process for security      cameras?
  3. Does the      district have an agreement with the Village of Schiller Park to enter into      a contract with a vendor to install and operate an automated traffic law      enforcement system on the school buses?
  4. Is this really      what the school board wants to raise funds?

(Ms. Caffero’s full statement that was distributed at the Board meeting is attached.)

  • SPEA member      Mary Kren stated that the SPEA believes that community service is      important, and participation sets a good example for the students.  Ms. Kren invited the Board and community      to attend the Third Annual Project HeartWell 5K Run/Walk, which will be      held on Sunday October 6, beginning and ending at Kennedy School.  Last year the event raised $6,000.  The money raised this year will be      donated among three organizations; a local soup kitchen, Gift from the      Heart Foundation, and Partners in Mission.

Example of Excellence – D81 Curriculum and Assessment Aligned to the Common Core State Standards:  The curriculum facilitators from Kennedy, Washington, and Lincoln Schools presented the District 81’s work to align the curriculum and assessment to the Common Core State Standards.  The faculty and administration is planning on holding a community forum to present the new report card, which will include the common core state standards in late October or early November. The community is welcome to attend and ask many questions on the topic. Vice President Godziszewski commended the teachers for their extensive work, stating that the work the faculty did to align the common core standards was impressive.

Business Information and Action:

Old Business Information: RFP/Bid Security Camera GPS: Jeremy Dotson, Chief School Business Official, spoke about some of the advantages and options to having the stop arm camera on the District 81 buses by a vendor such as Red Speed, and stated that it was not state mandated.  Regarding the cameras on the buses, Member Downs inquired if there were safety problems currently on the buses. Member Desecki asked about the cost of transferring the equipment when the District changed buses.  Member Flanagan was concerned about the life cycle and quality of product, particularly if the equipment is offered “free,” during the bidding process.  It was determined that Superintendent Boryszewski would present data to the Board regarding safety incidences to determine if the cameras are needed.  This data will be presented at the October Board meeting.

Old Business Action: The Board of Education approved the following motions:

  • Award      landscaping bid to Fleck’s Landscaping.
  • Postpone      parking lot resurfacing bid until June, 2014.
  • Award pest      control bid to Andersen Pest Solution.
  • Award      balcony/railing paint work bid to G.O. Painters
  • Award steel      cleaning/window washing bid to ABC Commercial, Inc.

New Business Action: The Board of Education approved the balanced budget for 2013-2014 by vote of 5 to 2. Vice President Godziszewski noted that she voted “no” to the budget because she wished to eliminate the “excess” that was built into the budget, and rely on fund balance reserves instead. Chief School Business Official Dotson stated that the budget excess is an estimate that will be evaluated on an ongoing basis to cover any unplanned situations that may occur during the 2013-14 school year.

Personnel:

  • The Board of      Education approved the hiring of:
    • Jacklin       Vargas, Spanish Bilingual Teacher at Kennedy School
    • Jennifer       Kemling, Paraprofessional at Kennedy School
    • Shannon David,       Paraprofessional at Kennedy School
    • Antonio       Napolitano, Paraprofessional at Kennedy School
    • Benton Zeiser,       Paraprofessional at Lincoln Middle School
  • The Board of      Education accepted the resignations of:
    • Adrianne       Geraci, Paraprofessional at Lincoln Middle School

 

 

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Category: Articles, Community News

About the Author ()

Barbara is the publisher of People and Places Newspaper which she started in August of 2011. A lifelong resident of Schiller Park, she always felt it important that residents needed to be kept informed about their communities. Since newspaper coverage for Schiller Park stopped about twenty years ago, she made it a goal to bring a newspaper back to the area. She tries to include all of Leyden Township in her reporting and wants to keep true with the mission of the paper to "inform, educate and entertain."

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