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YORK SUBURBAN SCHOOL BOARD
PLANNING COMMITTEE MEETING
SEPTEMBER 9, 2013 - 7:30 PM
HIGH SCHOOL CAFETERIA

M I N U T E S

(approved on September 23, 2013)

  1. General Business
    1. Call to Order - Ms. Leopold-Sharp
      1. Pledge of Allegiance to the Flag

        Ms. Leopold-Sharp called the meeting to order with the Pledge of Allegiance to the Flag.
      2. Roll Call

        Members present - Emily Bates, Jennifer Clancy, John DeHaas, William Kirk, Lynne Leopold-Sharp, Roger Miller, Lois Ann Schroeder, Joel Sears, Cathy Shaffer, Alison Liu (Student Representative)
  2. Board President's Report - Ms. Leopold-Sharp
    1. Fourth Quarter Committee Meeting Schedule

      Ms. Leopold-Sharp highlighted above information.
    2. District Goals Review
      1. Comprehensive Plan Goals - 7/1/13-6/30/16
      2. Goals Model

        Ms. Leopold-Sharp provided review of Comprehensive Plan Goals.

        Dr. Orban provided review of Goals Model.

        Ms. Leopold-Sharp reported a discussion will continue at October Planning Committee meeting.
  3. Superintendent's Report - Dr. Orban
    1. Welcome to Exchange Students - Mr. Ellis
      1.  Noel Affolter - from Switzerland
      2. Valentin Oettinger - from Germany

        Mr. Ellis provided an introduction of above students and their host parents in attendance this evening.  Mr. Ellis thanked the Board for supporting this great opportunity for this type of global experience.
    2. Student Enrollment Report

      Dr. Orban reviewed above information and reported the registrations have slowed down but are  continuing.  Once the official October 1 enrollment is available, PA Economy League (PEL) will revise the enrollment study as planned.

      Mrs. Clancy inquired about increased Middle School enrollment, especially 6th grade.  The 4th and 5th grade are experiencing larger classes too.  Question to the administration about the increased needs especially in the guidance office and Unified Arts with the extra students?  Please report back to the Board.
  4. Business Office Report - Ms. Mason
    1. Review Draft of 2014-15  Budget Timeline

      Ms. Mason reviewed above information.

      A discussion continued.  Points of the discussion included - with new legislation is a District authorized to reopen a budget and change the tax rate?; administration responded the District can reopen a budget but not change tax rate; the 2014-15 index is not official yet but estimated 2.1%; suggestion to have new Board membership review the timeline in December was discussed and would give administration a challenge with this change and it was decided goals will be reviewed in next two weeks and review of timeline would take place at September regular monthly meeting; include presentation of budget to public; the Board requested a report back following the administration's meetings with the faculty and staff.
    2. End of Year Balance 2012-13

      Ms. Mason reported a preliminary meeting with the auditors took place.  There is an additional $1 million to be brought forward to add to the fund balance. Of that amount, $150,000 the Board was looking to balance the budget that was not used, $200,000 from budgetary reserve that was not used, $120,000 savings on tuition reimbursement that we normally would use for the teachers, one time revenue increase of $329,000 for sale of Memorial Hospital office building to a private company which then in turn put that back on the books, $200,000 from object 600 that includes supplies, books, natural gas, general supplies, etc.

      A discussion continued.  Points of the discussion included - Board presentation by the auditors is scheduled November 18 with information going to Finance Committee in October; the $329,000 is property tax; administration is reviewing if any of these items may be repeat items for reduction as preparation takes place for next year's budget. 
    3. 2013-14 Bus Routes
      1. Bus/Van Drivers

        Ms. Mason highlighted above information and requested routine approval of above.

        Ms. Leopold-Sharp reported this item will be presented for approval in two weeks at September 23 regular monthly meeting.

        Mr. Kirk asked if this information could be available before school starts in the future?

        Ms. Mason replied the administration will try for August review and approval.
  5. Discussion Items
    1. Request for Overnight Field Trip - Ski Club - Dr. Orban

      Dr. Orban highlighted above information and responded to a question about chaperones.  Per policy male and female chaperones are necessary, one for every ten students.  This item will be up for approval at the September 23 meeting.

      There was an opportunity for public comment.  There was none at this time.
    2. Educational Strategy Related to Elementary Facilities Usage - Mrs. Schroeder
      1. Policy 126 - Class Size
      2. Elementay Room Utilization

        Ms. Leopold-Sharp reported the Board has done its due diligence in reviewing enrollment projections and facilities, if the buildings are utilized appropriately and what needs exist at the buildings.  The work began early in the year with an assessment of our roofs in the District, followed by a facilities review and in August Dr. Orban presented some general ways to use our facilities and the current elementary room utilization data is available this evening.  In addition to looking at facilities and the spaces available, several Board members have asked that an education strategy for the elementary facilities discussion takes place with the Board.  Mrs. Schroeder made the request first and she will begin the discussion.

        Mrs. Schroeder provided comments about the suggestion that was made of consolidating elementary schools in the District being a vital option of saving money and balancing the budget.  The suggestion is to close Indian Rock Elemtary School and that would require busing 3rd, 4th and 5th grade students to East York Elementary School.  Results would include a larger population of students under one roof about 700 students, along with larger classes and larger programs.  Building modifications would be necessary and certain programs may be compromised.  What are our priorities in educating our elementary students?  What do we hold in regard for a York Suburban education?  Is this move best for the education process?  Is it best for kids?  Consensus of Board and administration has been up until now to keep class size small for what is best for academic achievement.  Are we saying the recent budgetary woes are justification for increasing class sizes?  Abundant research supports small class size and clearly influences student learning.  Student needs are on the rise in our District and meeting these needs in larger classes would be difficult.  Increasing class size should only be considered in a near last resort.  We should be focused on what is best for these kids down the road rather than settling for a quick fix to balance the budget.  I suggest we keep policy for small class size, maintain our smaller schools, classes and programs and ask the administration to craft a budget utilizing that mindset. 

        Ms. Leopold-Sharp reported a  number of Board members have asked to speak to this issue.

        Ms. Bates reiterated one of the points just made that the policy on class size was reviewed and revised in April 2011 and at that time elementary class sizes would remain the same.

        Mrs. Clancy reported that she served on policy committee at that time and my opinion then was to adhere to smaller class sizes and propose no changes be made as we look at 2014-15 budget.

        Mrs. Shaffer echoed comments of Board members.

        Mr. Sears asked about some of the elementary classes that are over at this time.  How firm are the guidelines?

        Dr. Orban replied these are viewed as guidelines.  We did add a K and 6th grade class recently.  There are times when an aide is added to a classroom.  The administration waits until the October enrollment is available.  However, upon review of the guidelines, Dr. Orban indicated most classes are within the guidelines.

        Mrs. Shaffer reported that she received an email from a member of the community recovering from surgery, Vicki Klinedinst, that was unable to be here this evening and she urges the Board to continue with smaller class size to assure the success of students.

        Mr. DeHaas suggested to everyone to establish the goals in terms of performance and work toward those goals.  There may be under-utilized rooms that would allow some flexibility, probably not enough to close a building.  Urged Board members to keep open mind to approach the same question, reduction of class size is not the only way.  YS stands for smaller class sizes.  Keep in mind that tradition.  Instead of being one of the top schools in York County, I would suggest to look at being better with other state and national educators.  We have excellent staff and we as adults have to give students, who are the future, the opportunity to not only succeed but thrive.

        Mr. Kirk clarified a possible perception that is out there.  No one here wants to increase class size. That would not help education.   We have been staring at budget deficits going into the future by millions of dollars.  This District has to balance the budget.  We have options and one of the options is eliminating an elementary building or increasing classes by one or two students.  That study has not been done yet.  I have been asking for that study for two years.  What could be done and what is the impact to class size.  If we don't look at consolidation, there are a few other areas to look at, transportation and salaries/benefits.  If we don't look at creative ways to try and save money with possible school consolidation without raising class sizes, then we would be forced to eliminate teachers, which I do not want to do.  Increase class size or get rid of programs is the way to eliminate teachers.  Where are we going to get the money to meet these deficits in the millions in the next two or three years?

        Ms. Leopold-Sharp commented that in conversations with the cabinet, one of the goals you will see is to look at what options are available to make the budget shortfalls disappear.  This coming year, I am confident that we will have considerably more data to evaluate the financial future of the District.

        An opportunity was provided for public comment.

        Ralph Felter, 1491 Turnberry Ct - kudos to Mrs. Schroeder and Mr. Kirk for frank and honest outline that was provided this evening

        Warren Bulette, 1775 S. Queen Street - question for board - How many average hours per day do our great teachers in K-3 spend in the classroom?  How many average hours per day do our great teachers in 4-6 spend in the classroom? How many average hours per day do our great teachers in 7-12 spend in the classroom?

        Robin Potorff, 1220 Mt. Rose Avenue - realtor in YS, have 1st grade student at Valley View - do see how this would potentially affect my child and also my clients who specifically look for YS for their children - how would students be affected psychologically with 700 elementary students in one building? 

        Eric Eckstrom, 1281 Laurel Oak Lane - I have a daughter and son in Valley View and Indian Rock - could an option include each elementary school being K-5 building?

        Ms. Leopold-Sharp replied the August report and the feasibility study does provide K-5 information that could be considered.

        Mr. Eckstrom added he supports small class sizes.

        Beth Papadiamantis, 2581 Green Springs Drive - there would be an expense to add on to East York and extra money would be required for gas and transportation to East York and extra time would be required due to congested traffic.

        Sarah Reinecker - 1101 Farquar Drive - reviewed feasibility study and PA Economy League (PEL)  projections and PEL is fairly accurate for five year projections and in past studies the long range PEL projections have been wildly inaccurate - there have been down trends and up trends and we are currently experiencing a down trend.

        Kimberly Stambaugh, 701 Hoffman Road - there is not a lot of extra land in the District, if land is sold, what land would be available when it is needed?

        Stephanie Sullivan, 331 Pine Hill Lane - feasibility study, Indian Rock needs a new roof, we have to deal with that sometime, now or when it is sold, personally prefer option 2 .

        Mark Brousseau, 1261 Woodland Road - option 3 of feasibility study indicated Indian Rock is  not a neighborhood school, due to kids starting K in another building and there are no sidewalks, I disagree.

        Connie Fickes, teacher at Yorkshire - class enrollment should be a priority, it is significant when class size goes from 19 to 22, with demographics changing those students need more attention.

        Ms. Leopold-Sharp assured everyone as the District moves forward, looking at facilities in greater detail and a budget for 2014-15 school year, the Board will be diligent at looking at variety of options to meet the needs of the students and keep education priorities at all times.  I  thank each of you for being here this evening.
    3. Policy 006 - Board Meetings - Ms. Bates

      Ms. Bates reported there were two significant changes to the above policy that the Policy Review Committee is putting forward.  Hearing comments from community members was discussed at the last meeting and would be the same for both Planning Comittee and Regular Monthly meetings.  Remote participation by Board members is the second change.

      A discussion continued. Points of the discussion include - Legislative Policy and PSBA Liaison should be two separate items; community comments should be stated five minutes or less as determined by the President; instead of commas on 8.a., utilize a list or bullets for clarification.

      Ms. Bates reported a member of the public attended the Policy Review Committee meeting and made a request to include a mechanism for public members to get a slot on community meeting agenda.  Any Board member can request an item on the agenda. The recommendation out of committee is that we not include the request in the policy.

      An opportunity was provided for public comment.

      Warren Bulette, 1775 S. Queen St - respectfully request Board to include somewhere a time limit when public questions will be answered, not an acknowledgement but an answer.
    4. Recommendation for Streamlined Roll Call Vote Procedures - Ms. Leopold-Sharp

      Ms. Leopold-Sharp reported a suggestion was received from the solicitor on roll call voting procedure.  School Code requires roll call votes for certain items.  For a roll call vote, the President would say "This will be considered an unanimous roll call vote unless I hear votes to the contrary.  Hearing none, the motion passes."  The Board secretary would record votes accordingly.  At any time, Board members could request traditional roll call vote.  This procedure is used at both York Tech and Lincoln Intermediate Unit.

      Ms. Bates added that the Policy Review committee did discuss this item and it was the consensus of the committee that this was a good idea but not necessary to put in a policy.

      Ms. Leopold-Sharp reported the Board will begin this process in September, October and November, with the new Board reviewing in December.
    5. Policy 915 - Booster & Support Organizations - Revised Addendum (School Related Community Organization's Annual Report) - Ms. Bates

      Ms. Bates highlighted above information and reviewed changes.

      A discussion continued.  Points of the discussion were - two officer signatures on checks was recommended by solicitor; limitations exist if one person goes out of town for a length of time and planning would be required when officers are not available; at annual meeting with PTOs and Organizations, there was no objection to this revision; removal of FSLIC as that is no longer effective; the consequence of the organization not being in compliance or incorrectly completing the form allows the Board an option to withdraw support of that organization.

      An opportunity was provided for public comment.

      Stephanie Sullivan, 331 Pine Hill Lane - Finance #3, appropriately bonded is correct wording; as officer of PTO I prefer the two signatures of officers and some banks do limit number of signers to two people, advance planning is required when an officer is out of town.

      Ms. Leopold-Sharp reported the revised form will be presented for approval at the September 23  meeting.
    6. PSBA Officers - Slate of Candidates - Mrs. Clancy

      Mrs. Clancy reviewed above information and stated a simple majority of votes is required at September's regular monthly meeting.  Proposal  that the Board consider, Mark Miller as President-Elect, Charles Ballard as Vice President, Cathy Swope as At-Large Representative, and Otto Voit as Treasurer.  Any discussion?

      Mrs. Shaffer stated proposal is endorsed by Leadership Development Committee with the exception of President-Elect.

      Mrs. Clancy replied the Leadership Development Committee did not follow proper protocol when putting forth the names of highly qualified candidates and independent research indicates that it was strongly suggested to me that a change at President-Elect position was encouraged and not to recycle leadership.  The majority of PSBA is supporting Mark Miller in public deliberation for his new visions and new energy that he would bring to this position.

      An opportunity was provided for public comment.

      Rob Lackey, 45 Quaker Drive - What is PSBA? I request abbreviations be defined in the future during public deliberation.

      Ms. Leopold-Sharp replied PSBA stands for Pennsylvania School Boards Association and thank you for bringing this to our attention.
    7. Job Descriptions - Dr. Orban
      1. Director of Pupil Personnel
      2. Accountant
      3. Secretary - Director of Finance and Support Services
      4. Secretary - Payroll and Benefits
      5. Secretary - Transportation and Child Accounting

        Dr. Orban provided review of above.

        An opportunity was provided for public comment.  There was none at this time.

        Ms. Leopold-Sharp reported this item will be voted on at the September 23 meeting.
    8. Naming of Facilities - Ms. Leopold-Sharp
      1. Policy 913.2 - Commercial Sponsorship Agreements

        Ms. Leopold-Sharp reported a suggestion was brought to the Board at their last meeting requesting the naming of the natatorium Richard Guyer.  About five years ago when veteran faculty were retiring, naming requests were received by the Board, high school gymnasium, Joseph Hasenfuss and planetarium, David Black, and the Board decided in 2008 not to name buildings and areas.  Would the Board like to revisit this topic?

        Ms. Bates, chair of Policy Review Committee, requested this be discussed as a full Board and not become a policy for the policy review committee.  I personally do not agree with decision that was made in 2008.
         
        Dr. Orban respectfully disagreed.  Boards have specific naming policies and Administrative Regulations and these are usually done at the committee level with official application.  This would be protection for Board and an important piece for the District.  I encourage the Board to have a naming policy.

        Mr. DeHaas stated that it is time to revisit this subject.

        Ms. Leopold-Sharp directed the Policy Review Committee to review samples of policies.

        An opportunity was provided for public comment.

        Kimberly Stambaugh, 701 Hoffman Rd - suggestion to ask the people that made request five years ago to have same opportunity as well
  6. Committee Reports
    1. Academic Standards and Curriculum Committee - Mrs. Clancy
      1. The minutes of August 28 are provided.

        Mrs. Clancy reported above.
      2. The next meeting is scheduled October 16 at 3:45 PM.

        Mrs. Clancy reported above.
    2. Communications Committee - Mrs. Schroeder
      1. The next meeting is scheduled October 7 at 6:30 PM.

        Mrs. Schroeder reported above.
    3. Facilities Committee - Mr. DeHaas
      1. The minutes of July 24 are provided.

        Mr. DeHaas reported roofing , windows and push-bars on doors projects are complete and were completed pretty much on time and on budget.  Summer work was discussed and not as much may have been accomplished as we are used to due to budget limitations.  Mrs. Shaffer suggested unique ways to try and get some of that done in volunteer efforts.

        Mr. Kirk added there was an offer from Booster Club to repair windows in the booth at the stadium.  The District would do the work.  The committee would be willing to accept that donation.
      2. Bradley Clark's Eagle Scout Project at Yorkshire Elementary School for improvement to the aesthetics at the retention pond

        Bradley Clark was present and explained project above, approximate cost is $700-$1700, depending on my fund raising.

        Mr. DeHaas shared that the District would need to prepare the area to allow a successful project.  There would be a cost to the District.  The proposed timeline is solely determined on the preparation of the area that is required first.  Brad could complete the project this fall.
      3. Yorkshire Basin Bottom

        Mr. DeHaas reported some work does need done on the basin to accept water and not just have water lay there.

        Ms. Mason provided estimated scale down plan would cost $2,500 to $3,000.

        Mr. DeHaas respectfully asked support of this expense so Brad's project could be completed.

        Ms. Mason reported that the District received from Springettsbury Township an escrow check in the amount of $3800 and it would seem appropriate to use that for this project.
      4. The next Facilities Committee meeting is scheduled September 25 at 5:30 PM.

        Mr. DeHaas reported above.
    4. Finance Committee - Mr. Miller
      1. The minutes of July 31 are provided.

        Mr. Miller reported the budget will be prepared as a forecast format rather than projection format by Ms. Mason this year.  A projection format used last three year average and forecast format is taking what we know and building that into the budget.  It will give more accurate information.  It may look worse than the projection format.  It would build the budget around costs with strategies.  The numbers will not be available until January, which would be a little bit behind.  The principals at the building level will do that same thing in budget planning.  The delay would only occur this year not the years going forward.
      2. The next Finance Committee meeting is scheduled on October 2 at 5:00 PM.

        Mr. Miller reported above.
    5. Legislative Policy Committee - Mrs. Clancy

      No report
    6. Personnel Committee - Mrs. Shaffer
      1. The next Personnel Committee meeting is scheduled October 24 at 4:00 PM.

          Mrs. Shaffer reported above.
    7. Planning Committee - Mr. Kirk
      1. The next Planning Committee meeting is scheduled October 7 at 7:30 PM.

        Mr. Kirk reported above.
    8. Policy Review Committee Report - Ms. Bates
      1. The minutes of August 27 are provided.

        Ms. Bates reported above.
      2. The next Policy Review Committee meeting is scheduled September 17 at 3:45 PM.

        Ms. Bates reported above.
  7. Public Comment

    An opportunity was provided for public comment.

    Rob Lackey, 45 Quaker Drive - Eagle Scout Project, I am troop committee chairman and this doesn't sound like the normal kind of project to propose extra funding from the beneficiary

    Mr. DeHaas responded that Brad did not know that and his project will lay on the district project which does need completed.

    Ellen Freireich, 2805 Lehigh Road - thanks is extended to Emily Dietrich and Dollars for Scholars, Dr. Merkle and the Wellness Committee for all the work that was done for a great fun family time on Saturday at the Wellness Day

    Kimberly Stambaugh, 701 Hoffman Road - I was a girl scout for 13 years, am troop leader for my daughter and I thank you for taking part in the Eagle Scout project.
  8. Adjournment 

    The meeting was adjourned at 9:11 PM.


    AN EXECUTIVE SESSION WILL BE HELD IMMEDIATELY FOLLOWING THE MEETING.

    An Executive Session was held following the meeting.


 

     

The York Suburban School District is an Equal Opportunity Education Institution and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, religious creed, ancestry, sex, age, marital status or handicap, in accordance with Title VI of the Civil Rights Action of 1964, Title IX of the Education Act Amendments of 1972, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation of the Handicapped Act of 1973, and the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, in its activities, educational and vocational programs and in its recruitment and employment practices. Inquiries concerning the application of Title VI, Title IX, Section 504, the ADA and the implementing regulations may be referred to the Superintendent, 1800 Hollywood Drive, York, PA 17403, telephone (717) 885-1210.