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May 2016:Board Meeting Minutes

Board Meeting Minutes
@Tonkon Torp LLP, 888 SW 5th Avenue, Portland, Oregon 97204 May 10, 2016
5:45-8:00 PM

Note: April board meeting cancelled due to other commitments.

Board Members Present: Dory Hobbs, Jarod Hobbs, Karen Kitchen, Jeff Scott, Shouka Rezvani, Nicole Aas-Rouxparis
Board Members Absent: Karyn Warner, Karen Kitchen
Admin and Teachers Present: Chantal Dufour-Martel, Genevieve Maull, Yann Renimel

  1. Consent Resolutions approved by unanimous vote: Approval of tax returns, Q3 financial and accountability reports submitted to PPS, and distributions year-to-date of income from Le Monde Programs to Le Monde Immersion.
    The board accepted the resignation of Karyn Warner from the board and thanked her in absentia for her years of service to Le Monde.Shouka shared a letter with the board from two of the teachers, who formally requested that the board prioritize salary increases in future years as the cost of living in Portland continues to rise steadily. The board has granted salary increases in prior years but has placed a salary freeze next year in the budget for salaried staff pending observing how this year concludes financially, and what next year’s enrollment looks like when the year starts.
  2. School update from Chantal.
    1. Chantal, Shouka, and various staff members attended an ODE training regarding the need to tie teacher goals in their formal evaluations to student learning goals. Chantal will train teachers regarding establishing student learning goals in the fall.
    2. Chantal checked in with the classroom teachers regarding the French Language Arts curriculum. They are happy with the choice of program/curriculum from past years. Chantal plans to work with the ELA teachers to do a similar curriculum evaluation.
    3. The staff has agreed to form a committee to draft a proposed daily instructional schedule for Chantal’s review.
    4. Additional chromebooks are needed for testing, ideally another classroom’s worth. Right now about 28 functioning computers are shared between all 10 classrooms. PPS no longer allows charter schools to borrow their computers.
    5. Teachers expressed appreciation for the extra planning time incorporated into next year’s calendar.
    6.  MAP results to date were discussed. In grades 3 and 4, there is excellent growth in math, but ELA growth did not meet growth benchmarks. In K-1-2, many math scores were not meeting growth benchmarks, and ELA growth, though present, often did not meet growth projections. Next year Sidsel Andersen will work with K-1-2 teachers to model math instruction and assist with implementation of the Singapore Math curriculum. Reena will be assisting in 4th grade classrooms, especially to model math instruction. In lower grades ELA MAP results may not accurately reflect instruction as English instruction does not start until first grade and in the immersion model we anticipate slight delays in ELA acquisition. Board suggests that a training opportunity be found for ELA teachers on how to appropriately use curriculum (Imagine It!) and in best practices in language arts instruction. Jeff can provide recommendations for training.
    7. Smarter Balanced Testing for third and fourth grades will be conducted this month.
  3. Suggestion from Le Monde Parents. Le Monde Parents chair has recommended that we not conduct an all school picnic this summer, as the event tends to be poorly attended by staff who still are on vacation, and the group size has become too large and intimidating for new families. They suggest that they plan back to school activities for new families and K classes at the class level, not for the full school. The board likes and supports this idea.
  4. Facility Update. Shouka conducted a building code appeal to appeal the building code foundation requirements for the portables. Although the appeal was denied, the city committee then provided the required changes to the foundation in order to be approved, and the portables company has modified their plans accordingly. The next step is getting city planning approval. Shouka has met with our parent volunteer real estate broker to discuss the continuing search for a long-term facility. Shouka also has entered into preliminary discussions and has provided financial information to a social venture fund that provides financing and building support to start-up charter schools. She will report to the board if and when that fund is interested in additional discussions, which would involve meeting with board members.
  5. Financial. April financials were reviewed. Fundraising efforts continue to be strong, though the income deficiency due to under-enrollment as compared with budget continues. The parent volunteer chair of La Fete (formerly Iron Chef) has done a great job rallying assistants and created an online silent auction this year. We anticipate a great event thanks to the hard work of many parents. Plans are also in place for some parent volunteers to work with our French staff to create a French Culture Night, which will be primarily community building but have a small fundraising component. There will be a Thorns fundraiser and wine store fundraiser before academic year end.
  6. Le Monde Programs LLC. Julien of the Le Monde Programs LLC staff has agreed to conduct a summer program for 5 weeks this year, and sign up is underway for that program.
  7. Equity and Inclusivity in Education Committee. The parent and student poetry workshop explored a Malaysian poetry method based on the oral storytelling tradition. It was well attended by approximately 60 people. The next parent-only workshop will be about “Affirming Gender Diverse Children” and “Talking with Children About Sexuality” in June.
  8. Shouka relinquished her board vote. To avoid any potential appearance of conflict, while she is on staff she will serve as a nonvoting board member.