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November 2013: Board Meeting Minutes

Board Meeting
5:45-8:45 PM

Present: Shouka Rezvani, Karyn Warner, Nicole Aas-Rouxparis, Dory Hobbs, Jarod Hobbs, Robyn Pfeifer , Jane Fabulet-Roberts
Educators: Cris Davis, Jeanne Giles, Alexis Bidou, Craig Nelson PA
rep: Darcy Nielson Others: Stanford Brown

  1. Adoption of September/ October Minutes – unanimous in favor
  2. Review of Audit/Finance and Budget Report – Le Monde’s public audit is completed for the year ended June 30, 2013. The public auditors requested no revisions, and no issues or concerns were reported. Increases above budgeted revenue came from fundraising, AFCA, and summer camp.

    Our tax returns are also completed, and due on Nov 14. There have been a few errors that were corrected, and the final version came out today, and will be submitted for board approval.

    Le Monde’s budget is still on track, with fundraising goals being met to date, which is allowing us to better meet our goals as an organization. Nevertheless, with a $10,000 monthly fundraising goal to reach budget, we require continued focus on fundraising.

  3. School Status Update from Craig Nelson –Craig has been Le Monde’s interim head for one month now. Teachers used project week time to firm up curriculum development, to revise report cards, and to plan and prepare for teacher conferences. Volunteers have been hard at work in the school. Stanford Brown donated a rack for the lost and found, which is appreciated. Teachers and students also are hard at work.
  4. Teacher/Staff Assessment model–Craig recommends that first teacher evaluations be completed in December, with a second round in Jan/Feb. Craig is doing short visits in classes, giving feedback, and using the Charlotte Danielson model with some modifications. Craig will give a training on the model to staff and present to the board. He will be looking at target areas that include engagement, rigor, tie-in to standards, classroom environment, etc. The rating scale has 4 levels.

    Non-teaching staff will have different evaluations, which Craig will also provide information on to board. The board is leaning toward twice yearly evaluations for all staff.

  5. Discussion of Specials.

    1. Music – Craig has met with the music teacher and has visited music classes. He is recommending revisions to the current program.
    2. PE – Alexis reports that in all specials, including PE, it can be a struggle to get all students to participate. Jeanne reports that the drops in the buckets are now used consistently. Jeanne finds uniform use impacts the kids’ responses to them as a tool to modify behavior. There are a large number of positive reports from kids regarding zumba. There are a fewbenchmarks for PE that are not being met by Zumba and Karate, and while we have plenty of time due to the benchmarks being in a K-3 grade band, the board will re-examine PE to ensure they are planned for. Parent comments were mixed – one parent would like more
      physical education benchmark goals to be addressed, and reports on them, another parent was less concerned so long as children were participating in activities. Report cards will represent participation more than last year. Robyn is looking into Playworks PE instruction for the school. The board will look into this and other options. In 2017 Oregon law will require us to teach PE 30 minutes per day.
    3. Library– Jane has worked on the library and written instructions for how it should be used.
      Teachers have so far preferred to select books for students to pick from, and not spend time walking up to the library. The board would like to open library use up to families. Not having a librarian and set times is a concern, so volunteers will be sought out. Kindergarten classes are currently taking trips to the local library every month. The French library still does not completely represent the age range of our students, and there are limited readers for Gr 1 students. Teachers will give the board and parents wish lists from the French Scholastic catalogs, so that we may work toward better stocking of the class and school libraries.
    4. Art–Run for the Arts raised significant funds that we get to use for arts-related purposes.
      The board discussed possible uses for the money, including paying for music, arts-related field trips to cover parent conference times, etc. Also, visiting artists would be useful, but Alexis reports the teachers do also enjoy running their own art classes. More supplies are needed, and Alexis will make a list of items that would be useful. The use of an artist in residence program will be evaluated. The teachers will be given a budget and look at options. They want to be given options, and want a school-wide art option that all grades can benefit from. Shouka and Karyn will look into possibilities through Young Audiences. Jeanne and Yann are examining an artist each month in class, and have had a strong student response.
  6. Uniform Policy Enforcement – Uniforms are not being consistently worn. The weather change has increased noncompliance.

    1. Specific enforcement measures being taken – Craig has spoken with staff, and discussed a way to encourage compliance (classroom incentives, rewards, etc.) Parents should get notes at end of day if student shows up breaking dress code. Shouka asked teachers to remind parents of dress code via email. Craig recommends checking dress code compliance while taking roll, then giving child note to take home at the end of the day. A parent present recommended discussing chronic violators at the upcoming conferences.
    2. How to confirm that policy is enforced – Alexis supported Craig’s recommendation of
      checking dress code when taking roll. The PA association will be asked to help support via
      sharing dress code information reminders.
  7. PPS Accountability Plan– need to submit next year’s plan by November 25th.
  8. Facility Committee report – NW Academy & landlord meeting with Shouka and Craig. NW Academy is planning to move, but has given no time-frame. Facility committee should continue to look into alternative properties. Our current lease is through next academic year (2014/2015). Safety was discussed, and there is a strong record of safety in the building. The sextons will share safety policies. Staff now have radios, and can access sexton radios to call for assistance if necessary. Space sharing issues and noise were addressed and progress is being made.
  9. Executive Session—Employment matters were discussed.