School Board Update

November 21, 2019

Meeting Overview

Each month the board is presented non-action and action items for their consideration. A few noteworthy items from this month's meeting are included here.


Newly Approved Policies





Additional Items Approved by the Board

  • RRSEC/C-I Resolution
  • 2019-2021 Administrative Assistant Contract
  • 2019-2021 Activities Director Agreement
  • 2019-2021 Community Education Director Agreement
  • 2019-2021 Director of Student Support Services Agreement
  • 2019-2021 Director of Administrative Services and Human Resources Agreement
  • Acceptance of Gifts and Donations - thank you to our community!
  • New Facility Name - Cambridge-Isanti Woodland Campus

Full board agenda can be found here
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School Board Showcase - Cambridge Primary School

Principal Rhonda Malecha and school counselor Jodi Acker shared social/emotional learning strategies being used in their school along with a new sensory hallway recently installed. Students are benefiting from the additional support being provided. The full presentation can be found here.


It's a GREAT day to be a Bluejacket!

Superintendent's Report - Dr. Rudolph

Transportation Study Update

Rich Enga and K12 Transportation continue to work closely with our staff to inform the process of studying our current transportation system. In the next few days, surveys will be extended to families to gather information and feedback about their current experiences with our transportation services. These surveys will also help inform recommendations that K12 will provide to our district regarding any changes to consider. We remain on target for K12 to present findings at our December 12th Study Session with the School Board.


Comprehensive District Study

Our administrative teams have completed the task of gathering requested data and reports to help inform the comprehensive study of our district by Worner and Associates. Dr. Roger Worner and Dr. Kay Worner will be visiting our district over the next two months to host interviews, analyze data, and tour district facilities. The information provided in this study will help provide district leaders and School Board Members with data necessary to make decisions that can impact the near future as well as longer term planning.


Preparing for MN Winter

Our administrators and directors have been busy working with staff, students, and families to plan for e-Learning opportunities in the case of a need to close school due to winter weather. Our e-Learning plan has been well designed and communicated to all stakeholders through various formats. We are thankful to all staff who have worked hard to be prepared ahead of time. These days will allow student learning to continue to occur, even in the face of Ol’ Man Winter. You can find specific information about e-Learning plan on our district website e-Learning page.


Dave Maurer Community Education Award

At the Minnesota Community Education Association (MCEA) Fall Conference, Dave Maurer was awarded the 2019 State Community Educator of Excellence Award. This award is given to an active community education professional who is committed to working together, creating opportunities, persisting through challenges and partnering with others. This award recognizes Dave’s work throughout his career which began back in 1987. Congratulations Dave!

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Administration Report Highlights

REPORT FROM: ADMINISTRATIVE SERVICES and HUMAN RESOURCES

by: Julia Lines


Professional Development

I had the opportunity to attend a free School Law Seminar on Friday, November 15, which was put on by Ratwick, Rosak and Maloney. The day was filled with a variety of current case law and takeaways specific to school scenarios. I am working on putting together a presentation for administrators on case law updates and best practices to be presented at an upcoming administrative team meeting.


Superintendent Search Process

Wednesday, November 20, was a full day for Greg Vandal and Charlie Kyte of Peer Solutions, the firm retained by the Board to conduct an internal evaluation and potential full scale search, to meet with community members, staff and the public. This was a great opportunity to engage all stakeholders in this process. Mr. Vandal and Mr. Kyte facilitated discussions with the various groups in order to provide their feedback to the Board, develop interview questions and conduct an internal interview on December 5. The December 5 interview may result in an internal hire, or the Board may decide to publicly post the position and continue on with the full scale search.


Employee Assistance Program (EAP)

As we move into winter and a busy holiday season many employees can feel overwhelmed by obligations and stressors of balancing rewarding but taxing professions with personal lives. During this time of year more than ever we are grateful for our partnership with Fairview offering a free employee assistance program (EAP) to all employees. We have made a great effort to communicate about this confidential program so that staff can utilize the free counseling services for themselves and their family members. Employees do not need to be on the district insurance plan to take advantage of the EAP. We have also utilized the EAP for assistance working through employee relations. So far the investment in the fairview program has proven extremely beneficial.



REPORT FROM: FINANCE AND OPERATIONS

by: Christopher Kampa, CFA


Finance

We are focused on analyzing our current financial situation and have been meeting with stakeholders to better understand how we got where we are today. We are nearing completion of the audit process and will receive the FY2019 audited financial statements next month. We are preparing for the Truth in Taxation hearing on December 3rd and then presenting the final levy request at the December 19th board meeting.


Food Services

We are happy to welcome Jessica Smiley to the department, she has joined us as a Food Service Assistant at CIHS. Our annual required verification of meal applications was completed mid-month. We are making steady progress on the MDE food services audit preparation and are preparing for the upcoming bid season.


Transportation

We are nearly fully-staffed with only two open positions. There is currently one driver performing behind the wheel training and we have two more currently studying to pass their permit tests.


Building & Grounds

The Buildings and Ground staff continue to do outstanding work at all of our sites. As we transition from fall to winter, our grounds crews are making sure all of our snow removal equipment is ready to go. Our custodial and maintenance staff are also busy going over all of the heating components in the buildings, ensuring that we are prepared to take on what Mother Nature has in store for us this winter.


New Facility

We are seeing a lot of positive updates on the new facility. We are happy to report that the construction forecast is now under-budget. There is still a lot of work to be done, but we are optimistic in the facility’s current financial position. Construction is two-weeks ahead of schedule. Steel is on-site and the building structure is really starting to take shape. Temporary heating will begin in late December.We will decide on the building’s name this month and start ordering signage for the facility and grounds.



REPORT FROM: COMMUNITY EDUCATION

by: Dave Maurer


Brochure & Marketing

Final touches are being done on the Winter Community Education brochure, which will be delivered to homes starting December 9.

Director Maurer and members of the community education staff will be working with the Community Education Advisory Council to evaluate and improve the social media aspect of our marketing, similar to how we evaluated our brochure and printed materials in the past several years.


Adult Education

We continue to work to finalize our plan for Adults with Disabilities in the next month. This aspect of our department has been a focus for growth and the completion and approval of this plan are important to realizing this goal.



REPORT FROM: TEACHING & LEARNING

by: Dr. Brenda Damiani


District Assessment Committee Update

The District Assessment Committee met on Tuesday, October 29. The main agenda item was gathering input for building a strategic common assessment plan. The team discussed several items, including: what additional input is needed and from whom; which groups should we begin with in implementing common assessments; how does this connect with curriculum that is in the process of review or implementation; what process we can use to utilize the data to impact learning; and how can we communicate to parents and other stakeholders the results of the assessments. The next step is to bring this discussion back to the building administrators and leadership teams.


High School Course Proposals

Members from the District Curriculum Committee met to review the course proposals for the 2020-21 school year. Following are the proposed modifications to the CIHS Registration Guide for next school year:

  • New Courses

    • Advanced Ceramics

    • Wellness for Life

    • Honors Physics

  • Course Modifications

    • Field Ecology to Environmental Science 1

    • Natural Resources to Environmental Science 2

    • Small Engines to Power Sports/Small Engines

    • Woods 3 to Woods 3 A/B


Teaching & Learning Advisory Committee Update

The Teaching and Learning Advisory Committee met on November 12. The Teaching and Learning Department presented their committee work for Trimester 1. Committee members gave helpful feedback regarding the various committees. Here is a link to the presentation.


District Curriculum Committee Update

The District Curriculum Committee met on Tuesday, November 19 and modified parts of the Continuous Review Process at the district level and reviewed the standards cycles at the state level.


Federal Programs Update

The Teaching and Learning department is working with the Minnesota Department of Education (MDE) to find ways to identify our American Indian student population under the new Federal guidelines. The World’s Best Workforce Summary report was shared in a public forum through the Teaching & Learning Advisory committee and will be submitted to MDE this week.



REPORT FROM: STUDENT SUPPORT SERVICES

by: Julie Williams


Special Education Advisory Council (SEAC)

The Special Education Advisory Council is a group that provides input on special education issues to its local school district. Its purpose is to advise and advocate, not to decide policy. Minnesota law requires each school district in the state to have a SEAC and that a majority of the members must be comprised of parents of children with disabilities.


As part of the cooperative in the past, we were not required to have our own SEAC as this was part of RRSEC with representation from C-I. This year, we were excited to be able to start our own SEAC and met for the first time on 11/18/19. Turn out for the meeting was great and we had 10 parents attend with representation from all buildings. I shared an overview of special education in the district and a general overview of SEAC. We also discussed and adopted bylaws for our group. There was a great discussion on the vision and outreach for the SEAC as we discussed celebrations and challenges that parents are experiencing. The next steps discussed are to create a page on the website to share SEAC information and send out a survey to parents of students with disabilities to see what support they are needing. I’m looking forward to seeing this group grow and the support that can be offered to parents of students with disabilities as they are able to participate in SEAC sponsored events.


Special Education

The Special Ed Leadership Team (SELT) met on 11/15/19. There was great discussion revolving around progress monitoring as we are moving away from AIMS Web as a district and using DIBELS. Tammy Kraft and Patrick Morrow came to our meeting to further discuss a plan that I had met with them about. We are looking at creating consistency across all intervention groups in order to streamline data and support our students. This will lead to tools that T & L will help create and then we can share with SpEd staff using Acadience Math (an offshoot of DIEBELS). With this, it will lead to the ability to create uniformed goals and objectives in special education that will benefit students and teacher data collection as students move through the grades/buildings. We had further discussion around special education data (numbers) and how we could support teachers and students.