School Board Meeting Highlights
For a complete agenda, please visit us at:http://www.boarddocs.com/pa/parkland/Board.nsf/Public
All motions were approved.
New Elementary School Update
Jamie Bortz from KCBA Architects gave an update on the newly proposed elementary school in Upper Macungie Township (UMT). She said that bi-weekly design meetings are taking place with PSD and the engineers and include discussions about the schedule, site development, and building design. In August, the team will meet to review initial coordination of door hardware systems, A/V systems, security and fire alarm systems. The team has also begun discussions on proposed finishes, color schemes and furniture layout and design. Water main extension plans have been submitted to Lehigh County Authority and UMT and gas line expansion plans have been sent to UGI.
The Board asked some questions about when they would be able to weigh in on options for the project related to cost and design. Rich Sniscak explained that those discussions are currently happening and will be reviewed in detail on Saturday, October 14th, when the School Board will hold a Board Retreat to study the building design, costs, options and proposed financing plan. The PDE Act 34 public meeting, which will outline the proposed cost and financing plan for the entire project, will occur on November 13th. The plan will be on display for 30 days to allow for public review and comment before being finalized. The District is planning to break ground on the project in the spring of 2018.
Budget Timeline Update
John Vignone, Director of Business Administration, reviewed this 2017-18 Budget Timeline.
Parkland Ready 21
Tracy Smith, Assistant to the Superintendent for Operations, gave a thorough presentation about the launch of the Parkland Ready 21 Program. At the start of school, all Middle School Students will be issued a new Chromebook. The presentation outlines the who, what, when, how and why the program is being implemented. Click here and view the notes version for all of the details. Along with Tracy, other presenters included JR Renna, Coordinator of Education Technology, Tom Cierlitsky, Supervisor of Information Technology, Kelly Rosario, Director of Curriculum, Instruction and Professional Development, Damian Goodman, Elementary Dean of Students, and Lauren Will, PHS Instructional Technology Coach.
John Vignone mentioned that he was proud to serve on the Health Benefits Consortium Trust Agreement that was executed.
The Board recommended approval for Snyder Hoffman Associates to perform a study on how to connect Fogelsville Elementary School to the natural gas line that has been extended to hook up to the new hotel that just was built next door to the school. The conversion from oil to natural gas will most likely occur during the summer of 2018 and it is anticipated that after about 3.25 years, the District will witness an annual savings of approximately $40,000 in fuel oil and heating costs.
The School Board approved the purchase for 36 bus stop arm cameras to bring the District total to 50. The stop arm cameras allow the buses to capture the license plate numbers for driver's vehicles who don't obey the lay by not stopping when a bus is loading or unloading students and has its stop arm out. Images are given to local police departments who are prosecuting drivers who do not obey this important safety law that is designed to keep our students safe.
Mr. Bold noted that no spending plan has been approved yet by the PA legislature even though a budget was passed in July. School Districts and other government agencies remain in limbo as to when and if funding will start to flow for the 2017-18 year.
Mr. Sniscak thanked the Parkland Ready 21 Committee for their presentation. He noted that New Teacher Orientation gets underway on August 21 and that he will welcome all staff back on August 29 for the annual Opening Day Convocation in the PHS Auditorium.