The minutes of the January meeting were approved.
Mr. Gordon said that Governor Wolf has named Pedro Rivera, Superintendent of Schools in Lancaster, as his Secretary of Education. Mr. Gordon said "both men are advocates of public education." He said that the Commonwealth is facing a $1.85 billion deficit, and added that Governor Wolf's proposed natural gas extraction fee is earmarked for education, but said that our local legislators are opposed to the Governor's proposal.
He also said a bill is before the legislature that would eliminate the graduation requirements from the Keystone exam.
A law passed last year, Act 168, the "Sandusky" child abuse law, requires employees to undergo three clearances with renewals every three years, plus a letter from the previous employer for all new hires.
The School Performance Profile allows the public to see school districts' fund balances.
Basketball season has ended and the wrestlers will work at qualifying for the state tournament.
The Missoula Children's Theatre will visit Canton the last week of February and give two performances of The Jungle Book on February 28.
The proposed 2015-16 school calendar will have a different system for Parent Teacher Conferences, with early dismissal on Thursday with Friday as an Act #80 Day. Mr.Gordon thanked the Canton Area Education Association for their cooperation in the changes in the calendar.
So far this year the District has used all six snow days in the calendar, and there will be school on Presidents' Day.
Mr. Rimmer reported on the Spring PTA Fundraiser. Spring Picture Day will be next Friday. There will be early dismissal on February 27.
Kindergarten registration will be March 23 and 24. He asked that parents contact the district if they have a child eligible for Kindergarten.
Enrollment is 532, which is down three from last month.
Mr. Coleman said that the Junior High Basketball season is going on.
The Dual enrollment program is offering twelve courses through Corning Community College, Keystone College and Lackawanna College. He said this is a fine opportunity for students to obtain college credit, and "is a very worthwhile program. It is conceivable they could earn thirty college credits," he said.
Mr. Coran said that teachers and all paraprofessionals will receive Crisis Prevention Institute training. The PA Alternative System of Assessment will be given for those students with cognitive disabilities. This enables the district to remain in compliance with the school code and federal law.
The School to Work Program has placed thirteen students at twelve local businesses. The Driver Ed car is used to transport the students and their aide.
Mr. Gordon observed that at one time Coppertree and Serve were used for this program but Mr. Coran has "drummed up support among local businesses." Mr. Coleman said, "The kids love the experience." Mr. Coran noted that two students in last year's program have been hired at their mentor businesses. Mr. Wilcox suggested that if other businesses see the success of the program they may want to take part.
Mr. Jannone said a meeting had been held with Tony Ventello of the Progress Authority concerning the LERTA Ordinance passed by Canton Borough. This would give a ten-year abatement on assessment increases resulting from improvements to a qualifying deteriorated property. A meeting will be scheduled with Canton Borough to discuss the implications of the Ordinance.
The Finance Committee also will meet to begin looking at the 2015-16 budget. Mr. Jannone said "We will have a $15 million budget and $14.5 million is in place and will not change." He said the biggest questions revolve around how much money the state will provide.
He also said that the Make A Wish Foundation has requested permission to use the cafeteria for a training session for volunteers for that program. He said that some school employees may want to take the training.
Mrs. Lee reported that the food service has reached the highest level of a la carte sales since she began as Director. "Wellness Wednesdays" have been popular, as well as a lucky tray day and Chickpea Salad on Mediterranean Day. She said the Chicken Twister Wrap and Whole Grain funnel cake also have proven very popular. Mrs. Lee gave a whole grain cookie to the directors, identical to one to be given to the students on Valentine's Day. Molly the Cow will visit the school on February 23.
There were no committee reports and no visitor comments.
The Treasurer’s Report, Bills lists, the list of Tax Adds, Exemptions, Exonerations; the van route changes; and a Proposal for Professional Medical Services between CASD and Guthrie Medical Group, P.C. effective August 1, 2014 through July 31, 2016 all were approved on one motion, along with the proposed 2015/2016 I.U. 17 General Operations Budget. Mr. Black had a qualification about one exemption on the list. Mr. Jannone said he would look into the matter and if necessary the board could amend its exemption.
The board members had submitted their IU 17 ballots earlier.
Under personnel matters, the board accepted the resignation of Jody Matthews, part time cafeteria worker, effective January 23, 2015 and approved these additions to the substitute list, pending completion of all required paperwork and clearances:
Lynn Williams, Nancy Neff, Jody Matthews, cafeteria workers;
Olivia Shedden, Spanish teacher
Kirsten Bagley, classroom.
The board voted to accept the revision of the evaluation tool for support staff and to accept the support staff starting salaries and matrix.
Mr. Gordon noted that some of the directors had spouses on the support staff and asked the Solicitor to explain that this vote is not considered a conflict of interest. Mr. Sheetz explained that if the votes applied to individuals, the related parties should abstain, but because the items refer to the entire support staff "as a class" there is no need to abstain, "If all support staff are treated the same, it is an exception [to the potential conflict of interest] as long as no individual evaluation is being made." The board voted 8-0 to approve the motion.
The board passed motion approving the second reading of the following revised policies:
No. 004 – Local Board Procedures; No. 204 – Attendance; No. 222 – Tobacco Use; No. 302 – Employment of Superintendent/Assistant Superintendent; No. 806 – Child Abuse; No. 818 – Contracted Services; and gave the second reading to these new policies: No. 304 – Employment of District Staff; No. 305 – Employment of Substitutes; No. 306 – Employment of Summer School Staff; No. 307 – Student Teachers/Interns; No. 309 – Assignment and Transfer; No. 317 – Conduct/Disciplinary Procedures; No. 317.1 – Educator Misconduct
The board approved the first reading of revised policy No. 504 – Employment of Classified Employees
The district's 2015-2016 Calendar was approved.
Prior to tonight's meeting the board met in executive session to discuss personnel issues.