ESCAMBIA COUNTY, FLORIDA
MINUTES, APRIL 26, 2001
The School Board of Escambia County, Florida, convened in Special Meeting at 3:30 p.m., in the Board Room at the Dr. Vernon McDaniel Building, 215 West Garden Street, Pensacola, Florida, with the following present:
Chairman: Dr. John DeWitt
Vice Chairman: Mrs. Cary Stidham
Members: Mr. Gary L. Bergosh
Dr. Elmer Jenkins
Ms. Linda Finkelstein
School Board Attorney: Mr. Francisco Negron, Jr.
Superintendent of Schools: Mr. Jim Paul
I. ADOPTION OF AGENDA
Mr. Negron added a request for approval of Life Insurance Joinder Agreement and Promissory Notes to the agenda. Motion made by Mrs. Stidham, seconded by Ms. Finkelstein to approve the agenda as amended, was unanimous.
II. ITEMS FROM THE BOARD
Mr. Jerry Caine, Director of Operations, gave a short presentation, regarding four exhibits distributed to Board Members, outlining two proposals for school starting times and cost saving projections associated with each proposal. (Supplementary Minute Book, Exhibit "A") Sharon Ball, Jeanette Wilcox and Bob Pierce, Route Managers, and Nancy Spindler, Lead Driver, were in attendance to answer questions. Questions were raised concerning elimination of overtime for bus drivers, elimination of the Eastern Corridor, starting several high schools around 7:15 a.m., going to 7 ½ hour day instead of 8, and trunk routing. Mr. Negron advised that there could be a problem with the Augustus Settlement if the Eastern Corridor was eliminated in that the District cannot take away effective choice for those students covered in the settlement. Dr. Jenkins felt that alternate transportation (i.e., mini vans) could be used to transport those students that would be effected if the Eastern Corridor was eliminated and that, in his opinion would not violate the Augustus Order. The Superintendent stated that today he would recommend approval of Proposal #1, continue to provide Eastern Corridor, solve the magnet school problem and move on. Dr. DeWitt restated the Superintendent's recommendation to approve Proposal #1 and maintain the operation with an emphasis of cutting overtime, implement trunk routing and continue to be as flexible as you can about the bus stops. Mrs. Stidham did not agree that the wording of the motion was the intent of Proposal #1.
Ms. Lesa Morgan, Director of George Stone, expressed concern regarding trunk routing. She reminded the Board that they had previously approved "shuttle" type transportation with dedicated transportation home for the West Florida High School of Advanced Technology and a change in transportation now could affect their enrollment.
Mrs. Stidham moved to adopt Proposal #1, except for the recommendation to eliminate the Eastern Corridor transportation, to implement trunk routing for magnet programs, with some shuttle service for the West Florida High School for Advanced Technology, with flexibility to look at other options. Motion was seconded by Dr. Jenkins. Mr. Negron asked that the maker of the motion include in their direction to Mr. Caine that he draft a rule, especially the preservation of the Eastern Corridor and that the trunk routing scenario be developed. The motion might be that "this is the Board's intent and direct the drafting of a rule." Mrs. Stidham indicated that she accepted Mr. Negron's suggestion and that the motion is, "Direct staff to draft a rule, encompassing Proposal #1, establishing the preservation of the Eastern Corridor and developing the trunk routing scenario, with an update from Transportation at the May 15, 2001, School Board meeting regarding the proposed stops if trunk routing is implemented." Dr. Jenkins concurred with the new wording of the proposed motion by Mrs. Stidham, and the motion was unanimously approval.
Arlene Costello, President of Escambia Education Association, expressed concerns about curriculum and children supervision issues if some of the proposed recommendations were approved.
b. Title I
Motion was made by Dr. DeWitt and seconded by Ms. Finkelstein to approve allocation of Title I funds for 2001-2002, according to the new School Wide Programs (SWP) Edit (Two Tier). (Supplementary Minute Book, Exhibit "B") Dr. DeWitt explained that there are children in schools that are entitled to Title I funds, as defined by federal law, which permits going to the 50% level, but do not receive them because the Board has set 60% as the cut-off level. The motion would allow for all eligible students to receive funding in those five schools that had 50% or more free/reduced. After discussion, Dr. DeWitt withdrew his motion and Ms. Finkelstein withdrew her second. Speakers wishing to address this issue chose not to speak after the motion was withdrawn.
ADD c. Life Insurance Joinder Agreement and Promissory Notes
A motion to rescind pervious action of the Board regarding approval of the Life Insurance Joinder Agreement and Promissory Note was made and approved at the regular School Board meeting on April 17, 2001, so further review of pertinent information could be made by Mr. Negron. Mr. Negron stated that he had completed that review (Supplementary Minute Book, Exhibit "C") and now recommended the Board reinstate its approval of the documents presented and approved by the Board at its regular meeting on March 20, 2001. Motion made by Mrs. Stidham, seconded by Ms. Finkelstein to reinstate its approval of the documents presented and approved by the Board at its regular meeting on March 20, 2001, was unanimous.
ITEMS FROM THE SUPERINTENDENT
a. Human Resources
Educational Support Personnel/Resignations and Retirements
Motion by Mrs. Stidham, seconded by Ms. Finkelstein to approve the resignation of employee, as set forth in the materials filed in Supplementary Minute Book, Exhibit "D", was unanimous.
b. Curriculum and Instruction
Request approval of Working Agreement between the School District of Escambia County, Florida and Pensacola Junior College for Comprehensive Family Literacy Services, Florida's Families as Educators Program Grant
Motion by Dr. Jenkins, seconded by Mrs. Stidham, to approve the working agreement between the School District and Pensacola Junior College for the Comprehensive Family Literacy Services, Florida's Families as Educator Program Grant, was unanimous. (Supplementary Minute Book, Exhibit "E")
III. BUDGET SESSION
Ms. Barbara Linker, Director of Budgeting, distributed a proposed budget schedule and school and District level projected allocations that will be contained in Budget Book II, currently under preparation. (Supplementary Minute Book, Exhibit "F") Dr. DeWitt asked that all Board Members review carefully the materials given to them and to work with Ms. Linker on any concerns or suggestions they may have regarding the budget process.
Arlene Costello, President of Escambia Education Association, gave an update from Tallahassee on pending legislation.
Gail Husbands, 1055 Farmington Place, Pensacola, Florida, expressed concern over the method of advertising the agenda for today's meeting.
There being no further business, the meeting adjourned at 5:10 p.m. (Official recordings of this meeting are filed in the Information Services Department)