December 2013 Board of Trustees Work Session Minutes

May 9th, 2014

Board of Trustees Work Session Minutes

Monday, December 16, 2013

Edward W. Bok Academy (Cafeteria)

3:30 PM  

Trustees Present: Chair Keith Wadsworth, Vice-Chair Danny Gill, Jimmy Nelson, Cindy Landen, Cheryl Garnett, Terry Fasel, Cassandra Denmark, Betty Wojcik

Staff Present:  Superintendent Jesse Jackson, Angela Heyward, Marie Cherrington-Gray, Brian Fisher, April Barnhardt, Julio Acevedo, Ken Henson, Donna Dunson, Damien Moses, Stacie Padgett, Gail Quam, Kim Griffiths, Michelle Counter, Becky Brown, Daniele Shick, Mary Beth Claypool, Anuj Saran,   

Others Present: Brenda Brader, Robin Gibson, John Ceballos  

I.          CALL TO ORDER                                                          Jesse Jackson, Superintendent

            The meeting was called to order at 3:48pm.  

II.  FINANCIAL REPORT                                                                      Brian Fisher, CFO  

A.  Monthly Financials

The financial report was provided by CFO Fisher:  Revenue has outpaced the expenditures through period ending November 2013 and $204,000 was added to the bottom line of all funds through this same period.  Our General Fund is right on track with the budget.  We do have a large reimbursement from the Foundation that has not occurred yet.  On the expenditure side we have continuous negative variances and some expenditures are outpacing the budget.  We have received the approved Distribution Plan funds for our teacher salary adjustment.  This will be an action item for this afternoon.  On our Subsidiary Schedule our Pre-K programs are showing a decline in their operating positions, which is due in part to fewer service days in November.  We have transferred funds to the High School.  We are working with the Polk County District on the High School FTE payment numbers following the October survey period.  PCSB has capped the LWHS payment.  We have received all funds for our other five schools.  Transportation Expenditures:  We are under budget for the first five months of the year.  We have about a half of the year gone and we still have 2/3 of the expenditures left.  Our Transportation Director Richard Columbo did a transportation analysis comparing us to other counties which does not include any purchase.  Superintendent Jackson:  There will be a new report which will be more current and we will share that with you also when information from the state becomes available.  The data we have now is for 2010-2011.   Trustee Fasel:  It is really helpful for us to be able to see this data.  Superintendent Jackson:  I am very curious as to why Wakulla state allocation is higher than ours.  We are doing well with Food Service.  In our Grants area Title I and IDEA expenditures on a percentage basis are tracking ahead of all Federal grants in total.  The state has a notified LWCS of a reduction in Title II and our budget revision will reflect the correction.

B.  Resolution to Establish CD at Citizens Bank & Trust

We do have a Resolution which will be an action item for you this afternoon.  This is one of the covenants for the loan refinance for Citizens Bank.  Attorney Gibson:  This looks really good for the ability to receive tax exempt financials.  We’d like to have a partnership to work with the City of Lake Wales.  The Industrial Development Authority for Polk County will assist us on a tax exempt financing basis.

The City has a $10M cap on what they can do.  This is very encouraging and it will be great to work with the city.  Trustee Wojcik:  We would not have to pay the City from an interest standpoint correct?  Attorney Gibson:  The interest will be tax exempt that we receive from the bank.  We will ask the Board to execute the documents this afternoon.

C.  Salary Adjustment – Instructional & Non-Instructional

Salary:  CFO Fisher – advised we have received the disbursement from the County for the period July to December.  We will be processing the full salary adjustment this month.  We will do it next year based on the funding we receive from the State next year.  Trustee Wojcik:  We received all the funding for this year?  CFO Fisher:  Yes, we will through our monthly FTE payments, if someone leaves prior to the end of their contract, we will make the adjustment from the last check.  Trustee Wojcik:  Does this increase the base pay?  CFO Fisher:  Yes, this was a permanent adjustment to the base pay.  Superintendent Jackson:  What will be the payment date?  CFO Fisher:  After Board approval this evening, we will process the disbursements this Friday.

D.  Personnel Changes

The personnel changes you have received and reviewed will be an action item for the Board this afternoon.

III.  ATTORNEY’S REPORT                                            Robin Gibson, General Counsel

A.  Litigation Update

Attorney Gibson:  The FEFP payment for LWHS – the statute says Charter Schools must enroll up to the capacity of the school.  The High School has a 1700 capacity, so we must accept the students.  The District is holding funds for the students, which does not make any sense.  The Charter contract states we agree to accept the students that apply to LWHS.  The funding owed to us is around $400,000.  The Foundation is direct support for our Charter Schools.  Not much has happened within the last six to eight months.  The Foundation is looking to create a strong private funding system to assist in continuing this excellent school system.  We want a culture of even greater school support in our community.  The recent vacancy in the Community Outreach position has created the opportunity for a Development Officer position with the cooperation of Superintendent Jackson and others.  The Development Officer will have emphasis on marketing and generating economic support.  Chair Wadsworth:  The committee has retained a company from Lakeland (Don Selvage) and we are optimistic about getting someone soon.  LWCS have a great reputation throughout the County.  The Development Officer will be at $65,000-$70,000, and will also have an assistant.  We should have a solid office in a few months.  Mr. Gibson:  In 2014-2015 we will have 100 years of school in Lake Wales and we will also celebrate 10 years as a Charter System.  Our system is playing a big role in this and we would like to have a first rate series of events for this celebration.  Superintendent Jackson:  We do have expectations of the ROI as a result of committing to this.  We’ll ensure the investment has paid off.  This will be an action item for the Board this afternoon.     

 IV.  SUPERINTENDENT’S  REPORT                                            Jesse Jackson, Superintendent


Presented for review and approval at the December 16, 2013 Board of Trustees Meeting.

B.  EVALUATION ADVISORY TEAM REPORT                   Daniele Shick, AP

AP Shick:  The Evaluation team meets monthly.  You received your first report in November with the graphs we shared.  Most of the staff felt a little uncomfortable and this is to be expected.  The High School is most uncomfortable with iObservation.  However the teachers are treating this as a collaborative effort, they are sharing and supporting each other.  We are still working on the Leadership side.  It has been a great and positive learning experience.  We’ll do another check in January.  Trustee Fasel:  Does the teachers feel this is additional stuff?  Do they feel reluctant to take on practicum students or interns?  Teacher Becky Brown:  The language is different and has to be learned to feel comfortable with it.  Superintendent Jackson:  Some might feel it is additional work, however it allows them to show the quality of engagement that might require more.  We have to acknowledge what they are doing to engage students at different levels.  iObservation has been a slight challenge because it is a data driven system.  We will consider additional training on the iObservation tool.  Trustee Fasel:  When do you see them having more time to reflect on their practice, to self critique or self evaluate?  Teacher Michelle Counter:  When we reflect on student learning we will see that the student engagement and performance is most important.  Marzano brings this to the circle.  Trustee Fasel:  When the students share their notebooks it is great and the teachers should do the same.  AP Shick:  Teachers have to stop and think.  They have to be innovating at the top level they have to reach every student.  Superintendent Jackson:  The old model was about pacing ourselves and it will take some time to adjust.  Teacher Kim Griffiths:  Teachers have to learn gradually and while working with the kids we have to know when to slow down for some.  Trustee Fasel:  What about the high performing students?  Teacher Michelle Counter:  The learning and sharing of knowledge is innovating by teaching others as we go along.     Superintendent Jackson:  The evaluation was tied to teacher increase but we also wanted to provide the Board with an update.  Principal Barrow:  I would like to thank the Evaluation team for their work.  It is very important for us to be instructional leaders.  AP Padgett and I have enjoyed modeling the strategies.  Teacher Kim Griffiths:  We have met with the staff and have done one on one sessions. 


Hillcrest Elementary – Principal Jennifer Barrow

We have completed mid-year progress monitoring; 5th graders went to visit Bok; We have the PDS Silver Model School Behavior Program; Soar Academy Breakfast with Santa had many visitors; SAP – Student Acceleration Program had Star Gazing Night; Coach Debbie Knuth retired after 30 years; We had the Winter Haven Arts Performance and our PTO will be doing breakfast in the morning. 

Polk Avenue Elementary – Principal Gail Quam

Data Notebooks – the students enjoyed sharing last month.  We also had 93 students to visit Bok. 

Janie Howard Wilson Elementary – Principal Barbara Jones

Data Community – 80% of our students made progress.  We have adjusted our tutoring groups.  Our chorus will be performing downtown; Tuesday night is our Christmas program; Thursday night we will have open house and High Point will be assisting. 

Edward W. Bok Academy – Dean Allison Hunter

We have the 2nd IT Kid Academy event at B Street; We will have our six year campus celebration.  Polk County Sheriff office will be making a presentation at our school tomorrow; Our Winter Concert will be at the high school tomorrow. 

Lake Wales High School – Principal Donna Dunson

Some of our students will be visiting Florida Memorial and FAMU.  We will also have other visits soon to expose our students to college campuses.  Our teachers visited Detroit and had a great experience; January – H2H – Honor Society – tutoring assistance will be provided and many kids will be assisting each other. 

Dale R. Fair Babson Park Elementary – Principal Kenneth Henson

The Gnats had our annual maintenance breakfast; Friday we will have our Annual White Christmas; Breakfast with Santa was this past Saturday;  We are also donating and assisting others in need; We have also had Bring Your Parent to School Day. 


The January Board of Trustees Work Session and Board Meeting will be Tuesday, January 21, 2014 at Lake Wales High School.  The Work Session will begin at 3:30 PM and the Board Meeting will begin at 5:00 PM.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              




Meeting adjourned at 5:08pm.

Respectfully Submitted,

Marie Cherrington-Gray, Corporate Secretary

Board Approved: January 21, 2014

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