Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Bridgeport School Board Meeting October 12th, 2015

On the agenda:
There were no public comments this meeting.
- Mackinac Island Presentation and Approval begins at 1:40
- Martin G. Atkins Quarterly Report begins at 14:05
- Payment of Bills & Budget Report Minutes begins at 20:33
- Policy Committee Report Recommendations begins at 34:54
- Personnel Report begins at 36:44
- Board votes to go into closed session at 51:32
- Motion To Accept Advice Of Council Concerning Pending Litigation begins at 53:20
- Board And Superintendent Comments begins at 54:00
© 2015 Carla Citizen All Rights Reserved

I will start my post with a couple of good things from last nights meeting, then I will get to the rest of the meeting.
First good thing was the Mackinac Island Presentation.  The presentation was by Middle School Principal Mr. Baker and an assistant, Mr. Lounsbury.  What a fantastic opportunity this trip is for the children and I was glad to see it supported by the school board.

Elementary School Principal Mrs. Durand gave the Martin G. Atkins Quarterly Report.  From what I have heard from her updates, from what I have seen, from meeting and talking with other people, I think there are many great things going on at the school.  Martin G. Atkins also now has a Facebook page - https://www.facebook.com/martingatkins

Mr. Lange presented the recommendations from the Policy Committee and they were approved by the board.  I really like these new policies.
 * First is for how the board will deal with public comments --
"It is the President's responsibility to respond to public comments in one of the following ways:
1. Directly
2. Allow other Board members to respond.
3. Direct the matter to a Staff member and /or Committee with a commitment as to when a response would be forthcoming.
4. Defer the item to the Board Comments section of the meeting.
5. Defer the item to the next Board meeting where the item becomes a part of the Board Agenda."
 * Next is the Visitors and Staff Identification Policy --  A short excerpt of the policy is:
"It shall be the policy of the Bridgeport/Spaulding Schools that all visitors and staff be identified with picture ID before gaining access to school buildings and must wear identification badges while on school property.  The purpose of the access control system is to enhance building security.
The goal of the identification procedure is twofold:
1. So that school staff may be identified by responding agencies during times of crisis as a potential resource.
2.  So that staff and visitors can be identified as belonging on campus by all those who occupy the facility.
Persons who are not student or staff shall report immediately to the sign in area upon entering a school building.  Persons other than parents, guardians, students or staff, who desire to visit a school building, shall do so only with the permission of an appropriate administrative staff member."
* Lastly is that the board will set a standing agenda item starting in November where they will review one section each month of the Board Policies.

There was a discussion, and action, that took place during the board meeting last night that bothered me.  I have reviewed the video of the meeting several times since last night and each time I watch it, it bothers me a little more.
During the Personnel Report they were presented with some Administrative Contracts that needed to be approved.  This part of the report begins at 38:17 in the video.  The board voted to not approve the contracts at last nights meeting, they will send them to the Finance Committee for review and then they will be brought back up at the October 26th meeting for approval.  The whole union business is over my head a little but I do understand that these contracts fall under the "collective bargaining agreement", that were negotiated by a previous Administration with BAPA, The Bridgeport Administrators Professional Association.  You can view the agreement on the Bridgeport Schools website, under the transparency reporting section - http://www.bscs.k12.mi.us/UserFiles/Servers/Server_4467434/File/Migration/page_430_BAPA%207-23.pdf

Robert Lange did bring up that since they are union contracts they do need to be sure that they are in compliance and doing this properly.  I don't have a problem with that, sounds like a logical course of action.
Mr. Long was the first and the most vocal to object to approving the contracts at last nights meeting.  He brought up the fact that the school district has lost students since last year.  According to the article on MLive, they have lost 158 students since the 2014 count.  http://www.mlive.com/news/saginaw/index.ssf/2015/10/bridgeport-spaulding_school_di_1.html#incart_m-rpt-2



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