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El Paso County Colorado District 49

January BOE meeting wrap-up

All members were present at the Falcon School District 49 Board of Education regular meeting in January. Katie Kroeker from Falcon High School and Sydney Schroeder from Sand Creek High School also attended as members of the student board of representatives.Before the meeting, the BOE held a ìFantastic 49î event and recognized Bobby Odom, a specific learning disability paraprofessional at Falcon Elementary School of Technology, and Teresa Hinote, lead LEx reading interventionist at Odyssey Elementary School, for their hard work and dedication to their positions.Chief officer updateJack Bay, chief operations officer, said the first phase of construction on the office complex in the warehouse near the bus barn is ready, and the bottom floor should be completed by Feb. 22.Open forumJennifer Johnson, Peak Partners Leadership Academy leader, said about 20 members of the PPLA were present for the meeting, and she was looking forward to their engagement and participation.Action itemsThe board unanimously approved the following:

  • The Colorado Military Academy Charter School application
  • Withdrawal of the Liberty Tree Classical Academy Charter School application
  • Revisions to the following policies: fiscal management goals/priority objectives; authorized signatures/check writing services; accounting system/types of funds; financial reports and statements; purchasing/purchasing authority; purchasing procedures; cooperative purchasing; vendor relations; payment procedures; school properties disposition; prioritization of facility improvements; open hiring/equal employment opportunity; gifts to and solicitations by staff; staff personal security and safety; staff identification cards; teacher displacement; instructional staff reduction in force; education support staff career development; evaluation of educational support staff; resignation of educational support staff; exclusions and exemptions from student attendance; and student use of the Internet and electronic communications
  • The revised job description for the marketing and communications specialist
  • The revised BOE 2017-2018 meeting dates to move the 2017 November work session to Nov. 29
  • A resolution regarding certification of participation financing
Discussion itemsAndy Franko, iConnect zone leader, presented information about a proposed new position, called the coordinator of special student projects. The iConnect zone has created a partnership with the United States Olympic Committee and the U.S. Olympic Training Center to provide a flexible learning environment for students who have commitments to non-academic platforms like athletics, he said. These students can attend the Springs Studio for Academic Excellence and the Pikes Peak Early College, while training and performing in their specific arena; but the district needs someone to facilitate that, Franko said.ìThe District Accountability Advisory Committee budget subcommittee has approved the first 18 months of financing for this position; and, after that, the goal is to have it be a self-sustaining position,î Franko said.The BOE moved the item to the Jan. 25 special meeting, where it was approved.James Rohr, purchasing and contract manager, provided an update on the status to fulfill the ballot initiative 3B plans. The district put out a formal request for proposal for a project manager; and selected Wember Inc. from Denver, out of the seven respondents, he said.Ron Sprinz, finance group manager, presented an updated budget and said the per-pupil funding rate is dropping by $45.66 per student because the district had less ìat-riskî students than anticipated; thus, they could not include that funding in the budget. Brett Ridgway, chief business officer, said this discrepancy is likely due to an over-identification of at-risk students and does not reflect a change in the economic status of the districtís student body or a decrease in at-risk students who attend D 49.Sprinz requested lowering the general fund balance from 10 to 9 percent for the 2017-2018 school year to free up funds for startup and redesigned programs in the iConnect zone. Sprinz also requested operating at the 9 percent immediately until the general fund balance policy can be revised for the next school year.Marie LaVere-Wright, board president, said doing this would prevent the district from having to borrow money from the state of Colorado because of funding lags but keep the district well above the 3 percent required by state statute.The BOE moved this to the Jan. 25 special meeting, and subsequently approved it.Ryan Johanson, accounting group manager, presented the amended 2016-2017 charter school budget, and said the schools are doing a fantastic job with their budgets.The BOE moved this to the Jan. 25 special meeting, where it was approved.Peter Hilts, chief education officer, presented information on the school accountability committeeís performance report.Amber Whetstine, executive director of learning services, provided an update on the various unified improvement plans from the district schools.Bay provided an update on the projects lined out in ballot initiative 3B, and said he would like to have a dedicated D 49 team oversee all the projects ìfrom cradle to grave.î If the projects are done well and efficiently, the district stands a better chance of passing future ballot measures like 3B, he said.The BOE moved this to the Jan. 25 special meeting, where it was approved.Bay also provided an update on the Great Outdoors Colorado Grant that Stetson Elementary School has applied for to construct a new and improved school yard. Bay said the district must enter an intergovernmental agreement with El Paso County to receive the funding.Following the regular session, the BOE entered into an executive session.The next regular meeting of the BOE is Feb. 9 at 6:30 p.m. in the board room at the D 49 Education Services Center.

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