Committee Members: Mike Cobb, Greg Fowler, David Greene, Carmen Bryant, Karen Leonard, Kevin Stone
Staff: Rebecca Wright, Maurice Ghysels, Mary Lairon, Judy Crates
Absent: Members: Chris Kuszmaul, Philip Palmer
Ex Officio: Ellen Wheeler
Public: No members of the public were present
1. Welcome New Member
Committee welcomed Carmen Bryant, new member of the Committee. Carmen is a Huff School parent and operates a consulting business in Mountain View providing project management services for biotechnology business.
2. Call to Order and Review of Agenda
Meeting called to order at 6:38 PM.
3. Public Comment
No members of the public addressed the committee at this time.
4. Review of Minutes
No minutes were available for review.
5. Review PTOC Bylaws
The Committee reviewed the bylaws adopted by the Committee on October 10, 2005.
Committee discussed desire to see vacancies filled by the Board of Trustees so as to maintain a minimum of seven members at all times. In general, staff will seek to nominate new members to the Board once per year.
No changes were made to the Bylaws.
6. Review of 2005/06 Actuals
Rebecca Wright provided the Committee with a summary of parcel tax revenues and expenditures for the 2005/2006 school year.
Parcel Tax revenues for 2005/2006 are $1,637,475, approximately $20,000 less than expected. Parcel Tax expenditures are approximately $1,000 over target. Ending balance for Parcel Tax funds is $458,243. These funds are reserved to support cost increases in Parcel Tax-funded activities in future school years.
$350,000 of unspent Parcel Tax funds is being used to help cover required 3% reserve for economic uncertainty for the District’s general fund. This does not impact Parcel Tax expenditures. Reserve funds will be available for spending in future years. Do not anticipate that Parcel Tax monies will be required as part of the 2006/07 3% reserves.
Committee discussed that based on the information presented, the District appears to be meeting the requirement of collecting Parcel Tax revenue and depositing them in segregated accounts. For the Committee’s next meeting Staff will present the audited review of 2005/06 spending of Parcel Tax revenues. The Committee will use this data to verify spending was consistent with approved spending plan.
7. Update on 2006/07 Parcel Tax Programs
The Committee reviewed current status of previously approved Parcel Tax expenditures.
Overall, Parcel Tax revenues for 2006/07 are currently estimated to be approximately $58,000 greater than revenues for 2005/06.
Rebecca Wright reviewed by line item programs being funded. In general, programs are following previously discussed plans. Specific notes:
• Zero Period Electives. Higher 2006/07 expenditures represent use of additional Parcel Tax revenue to fund ongoing programs.
• Academic At-Risk. Planned expenditure increased from $80,000 to $150,000 to implement additional programs following May 2006 review by the Committee. Particularly good results from Parcel Tax funded by “Academic At-Risk Programs” at the middle schools. This includes new intervention counselors and new alternative school. Recent press coverage of student visit to San Jose State featured this program.
• Library Secretary. Library Secretary hours from Slater School have been reallocated to other campuses having over 500 students. Cost increase represents personnel expenses.
• Clerical. Clerical hours from Slater School reallocated to schools with over 500 students. Cost increase from June 2006 to September 2006 reflect updated budget.
• Custodial. Increase from 2005/06 to 2006/07 primarily reflects increase in health care benefits and reallocation of custodial resources from “Cost of Keeping an Elementary School Open.”
• Science Camp. While Committee suggested allocating up to $100,000 toward support of 5th Grade Science Camp, approved budget includes $50,000. This is a significant increase over the initial proposal of $10,000. $50,000 funding level can be sustained going forward with Parcel Tax revenues.
• CSMA. Increased costs of CSMA covers costs of extending program to cover expanded strings program and additional teaching time.
• Parcel Tax Lawsuit. Hearing scheduled for October. Funds to be held in budget pending hearing outcome.
• Administrative Costs. Slight increase in costs (staffing and postage) associated with assessment.
• 4/5/6 Reduction of Class Size. Has been integrated into curriculum.
o 6th Grade: Both Middle Schools have adding in “leveled” class periods where students of similar performance levels are grouped together for more focused instruction.
o 4th / 5th Grade: Programs now being developed. Castro program is focused on leveling English language learning. Other schools are developing program based on their test scores, e.g. Monta Loma focus on mathematics. Staffed 40%-60% FTE, based on school size.
• Elementary Newcomers Class. Requested by teachers to provide better support structure for students who arrive mid-year and may have limited language skills. Program reserved for students 3rd, 4th, or 5th grades who are new to U.S. (first U.S. school) and score at beginning level on CELT test measuring English proficiency. Last year, 40 such students arrived during the school year. Bilingual teacher and bilingual aide to facilitate both learning and parent integration into District. Program hosted at Monta Loma. Expect students to spend one year in program to reach intermediate level of proficiency in English language skills. Some separation of program between students who have and have not previously attended school. Parcel Tax funding is part of overall funding for the program.
• String Instruments. New instruments have been purchased. May benefit from additional Parcel Tax funding going forward.
• Teacher on Special Assignment at Castro. Focus on managing the challenges of integrating 3 school programs on a single campus and ensuring Williams Act compliance.
8. Review of After-School Programs
Judy Crates and Mary Lairon provided a review of opportunities for expanded after-school programs.
Proposition 49 authorized after-school programs and childcare, but has never been fully funded by State. Cover programs in K-9 from end of school to 6:00 PM (5 days per week at K-5; minimum of 3 days per week at 6-8). Program must include both academic time and enrichment time. Programs are funded by state at $7.50 per student per day, with a requirement for a 33% match. Fees can be charged for program, but no student can be denied participation. Priority is given to schools that have >50% of students on reduced price lunches. Castro is already guaranteed funding based on Performance Improvement status. Target is to serve at least 40 students per site, ideally 60. Current participation is based on nomination by teachers who identify students in need of academic assistance. Longer term vision is to have a richer set of enrichment programs offered on a fee basis.
Funding allocated by proposals. Proposals due to State within four weeks. District is working with City, YMCA, and other local organizations to develop proposals. Goal is to make school a center of activity and community for a longer day in support of higher levels of academic achievement.
Mike Cobb expressed concern about the costs and complexity of such programs. Experience of other programs seeking to offer similar services have found program costs vastly exceed available funding. Particular concerns about poor coordination and working relationships with the YMCA, as visible through overall poor quality of the YMCA programs.
Carmen Bryant expressed support for model. Significant value to have such an environment for students.
Ellen Wheeler asked about measurement. Program funding requires measurement of results and impact on academic achievement and attendance.
9. Presentation of District Goals
Superintendent Maurice Ghysels provided a presentation of District Goals. Presentation reflects new “story” and “branding” resulting from overall marketing effort to better reflect focus and differentiators of the District.
Academic Achievement: Focus on high achievement, high results. Overall, District up 7%.--37 point improvement at Castro based on 6 months of program. Using Edusoft tool with teacher-developed test instruments to better analyze results. Measure progress at completion of each trimester, evaluate outcome, and direct interventions accordingly. Expanded focus on continuous quality improvement using industry standard metrics.
Culture of Collaboration: Focus on strong community. Deeper level of cooperation and integration with City and leading corporations (e.g., Google, Synopsys, etc.).
Diversity. Build on the diversity of the District. Support achievement for full range to students, from new arrivals to GATE students.
Leverage Technology. Expand technology infrastructure to support mission of the district. Complete overhaul of District technology infrastructure. Laptops to the classroom. New program for making “grants” to support innovative technology deployment to teachers in the District. Programs offered in collaboration with Krause Center for Innovation (KCI).
• Teacher Compensation. Seek to raise take-home compensation for teachers.
• Business Cycle Uncertainties. Need to be prepared
• Unfunded/Under-Funded Mandates. No funding for required activities (e.g., some special education programs)
• Funding Complexity. Overall complexity of State funding allocation
• Categorical Funding. Significant limitations on how resources can be deployed
• Charter School. Originally intended to prototype innovations that could be scaled across the District. In reality being used by vocal groups of parents to set up their own private programs.
• Overall Funding Level. On a per-student basis far below other geographies. Shift away from local and property tax funding to income/sales tax funding makes funding far more volatile.
New/alternative approaches can play a role in moving the district forward, but must maintain focus on measurable results and research.
10. Agenda for January 22, 2007
• Review of 2005/2006 Actuals and Reports
• Update on 2006/2007 Parcel Tax programs
• Update on new after-school programs
• Discuss appropriate use of Parcel Tax funds vs. Site Council funded programs
• Priorities for Parcel Tax expenditures going forward
Following meeting will be Monday, May 21 2007 at 6:30.
Meeting adjourned at 9:25 PM.