June 30, 2020 Minutes

 SAULT STE. MARIE AREA PUBLIC SCHOOLS

SAULT STE. MARIE, MICHIGAN 49783

SPECIAL MEETING, BOARD OF EDUCATION

Phone 906/635-6609

 

Minutes – Monday, June 30, 2020

218.  I.     CALL TO ORDER

President Smith called the meeting to order at 7:00 p.m. via Zoom at    https://eupschools.zoom.us/j/91189815700 with Meeting ID:  911 8981 5700

      A.     ROLL CALL OF BOARD

Board Members Present:  Daniel L. Smith, Martin R. Wolski, Christine M. Curtis, Melissa S. Pingatore, Jay D. Wilson, Joseph A. Cochran, Esther L. Proulx

Board Members Absent:  None

 

219.     B.      ADOPTION OF THE AGENDA

 

It was moved by Member Wolski, supported by Member Wilson, that the Board of Education adopt the agenda as presented/revised.

                

Yeas:  Smith, Curtis, Cochran, Proulx, Pingatore, Wolski, Wilson

Nays:  None

Absent:  None

Motion Carried.

 

II.    PUBLIC COMMUNICATION AND CORRESPONDENCE

 

220.     A.       AUDIENCE PARTICIPATION

Lisa Young inquired on any local committees for parents to participate in regarding the District’s and Governor’s Return to School Plan.  She asked the district to consider students wearing face shields in addition or in place of face masks.

 

Superintendent Hall indicated his recent receipt of the Governor’s Return to School Plan.  He confirmed meetings have been scheduled and will be held with administrators, staff, and some of those are also parents of school age children.

 

Mrs. Young indicated her desire to have non-staff related parents included in the meetings.

 

Superintendent Hall indicated everyone wants to know what the return to school plan will be, but it is too early for a definitive plan.

 

President Smith stated the district will continue to say in close contact with the county health department to ensure both staff and students are as safe as possible for the start of school.

 

III.       ACTION ITEMS AND BOARD REPORTS

 

221.     A.     PUBLIC HEARING REGARDING THE PROPOSED 2020-2021 PRELIMINARY BUDGET –

                   Mrs. Michelle Bennin

It was moved by Member Curtis, supported by Member Proulx, that the Board of Education allow any public comment and input regarding the proposed 2020-2021 preliminary budget.

 

Yeas:  Curtis, Proulx, Wolski, Smith, Wilson, Pingatore, Cochran

Nays:  None

Absent:  None

Motion Carried.

 

Mrs. Young spoke on her inability to comment on the proposed budget without knowing what was in it.  She further stated it was her desire to be better informed on what is going on in the district. 

 

Member Wilson confirmed that the budget was pretty much a formality and nothing was set in stone because there were too many uncertainties at this point even though the state requires districts to approve a budget by July 1.   

 

President Smith confirmed the budget was based on current information for the best guess possible for next school year.   He noted the first amendment is usually made in December or January, but if the district has more information earlier, an amendment can be made then.

 

President Smith reported the Business Manager usually starts the preliminary budget in April, and then with the uncertainty of what the state is going to allocate, it gets drug out for a few more months.  He stated this budget is basically the way it’s always been developed.

 

President Smith confirmed there were no other questions or comments.

 

222.     B.     2020-2021 BUDGET ADOPTION – Mrs. Michelle Bennin

 

Mrs. Bennin reported on the proposed budget with a general fund deficit of $1,845,636 and a net fund equity balance of $1,450,706 or 6% of total general fund expenditures.

 

Mrs. Bennin reported on the June 30, 2020, general fund total revenues of $21,310,886 plus the July 1, 2020, fund balance of $3,296,342 for a total of $24,607,228 to be appropriated to the 2020-2021 general fund budget.

 

Mrs. Bennin reported on the June 30, 2020, general fund expenditures totaling $23,156,522 and the July 1, 2021, general fund projection of $1,450,706.

 

Mrs. Bennin reported on the resolution to appropriate $796,873 of revenues and matching food service expenditures on June 30, 2020, to the 2020-2021 school service fund. 

 

Mrs. Bennin reviewed the resolution to appropriate $375, 000 of revenues and matching agency expenditures to the 2020-2021 fiduciary fund.

 

Mrs. Bennin presented the 2020-2021 general fund resolution and budget.  She reported on the appropriated 2019-2020 revenues, instructional services, supporting services, and expenditures by line items along with the revenue and fund balance.

 

Mrs. Bennin reported on the following changes from the 2109-20202 appropriated budget to the 2020-2021 proposed budget.

  • Revenues: State revenue reduction of $1,505,075(per pupil funding), CARES revenue of $459,827.
  • Expenditures: Basic programs $340,586 reduction.
  • Supporting Services: Operations and Maintenance $242,676 reduction  (boiler off-set), Transportation $31,022 (no bus purchase), Central Support    Service $60,000 (student support software)
  • Revenue under expenditures of $553,008 and fund balance support of $1,292,628 on July 1. 

Mrs. Bennin noted the year end fund balance of $1,845,636 will be assigned precise function codes by budget expenditure as appropriate. 

 

It was moved by Member Wilson, supported by Member Pingatore, that the Board of Education adopt the 2020-2021 budget as proposed.

 

Upon inquiry from Member Curtis, Superintendent Hall reported a state takeover is usually not considered until the district has been operating under a negative budget and has failed in working with its ISD on a deficit reduction plan.

 

President Smith noted there are probably several districts going through hardship given what we’ve been dealing with over the last several months.

 

Upon inquiry, there were no questions

 

President Smith reported the state is mandated to basically take care of three areas:  provide for education, repair roads, and oversee a prison.  He suggested people contact the state to support education being its number 1 priority.

 

Yeas:  Smith, Curtis, Wolski, Cochran, Proulx, Pingatore

Nays:  None

Absent:  None

Motion Carried.

 

  1. IV. FUTURE PLANNING

 

July 13, 2020 – Board Organizational Meeting – 7:00 p.m. – Middle School

 

President Smith announced the July 13 organizational meeting at 7 p.m. and indicated that it could, hopefully, take place in the Middle School library.

 

Superintendent Hall indicated Member Proulx asked to speak to the Board. 

 

Mrs. Proulx reported she was resigning from the Board at the conclusion of the meeting.  She stated she enjoyed her time serving on and with the board, but due to recent changes at work, her children, and the COVID outbreak, she needed to spend more time to do what is best for her family.  She thanked the administrators and staff for their dedication and outstanding service to the students. 

 

President Smith stated he was sorry to hear of Mrs. Proulx’s departure and was really appreciative for the time and efforts she gave to the Board.  He acknowledged the need for everyone to put family first.

 

Superintendent Hall echoed President Smith’s remarks and stated it was enjoyable working with Mrs. Proulx.  He thanked her for her due diligence while serving on the Board.

 

Superintendent Hall reported in moving forward with the resignation, the district would need to appoint someone within 30 days to fill the vacant seat through December 31 upon which time the elected candidate(s) are sworn in.  He reported the appointee would obviously be eligible to run on the November ballot pending required paperwork is submitted to the County Clerk by July 21. 

 

Superintendent Hall reported if the Board does not appoint someone within 30 days, the ISD must then seek someone for the appointment. 

 

Superintendent Hall asked for possible board candidates to contact President Smith or himself so interviews could be scheduled in a timely manner.

 

Superintendent Hall reported the Governor’s Roadmap for students to return safely to school in the fall is layered based on the phase the Governor has placed the region in, and since we are currently in Phase 5, and if we don’t regress, we should be closer to reopening than other regions of the state and have more flexibility.

 

Superintendent Hall reported meetings have been scheduled with administrators, teachers, staff and parents to discuss possible reopening options, and the goal is to bring something to the Board at the July 13 meeting. 

 

Member Cochran referenced an article on the number of U.S. students who may not return to school in the fall and wanted to know if the district is planning to have an online program for them. 

 

Superintendent Hall reported the district is working on three separate plans as required by the state to accompany the phase the district is in, one for full attendance, one for closed attendance, and one of a hybrid of the previous two.

 

Upon inquiry from Member Cochran, Superintendent Hall reported the budget is subject to change based on several unknowns, and amendments will be forthcoming when necessary.  He indicated that recent information suggests the state will continue with a pupil funding proration, but federal CARES funding may allow for the difference.

 

Upon inquiry for questions by Superintendent Hall, Member Curtis inquired on the formation of the return to school plan committees and expressed desire to have at least one community parent involved.

 

Member Wilson expressed optimism for favorable teacher negotiations should the state and federal CARES per pupil funding be actualized.

 

Member Cochran expressed concern about the federal CARES act funding being used by the state to offset its reduction.   President Smith indicated appropriation shuffling has gone on for several years and everyone needs to let their legislators know that equitable education throughout the state needs to be their first priority.

 

  1. V. ADJOURNMENT

 

With no more business to come before the Board at 7:40 p.m., it was moved by Member Wolski, supported by Member Wilson, that the Board of Education adjourn the meeting.

 

Superintendent Hall announced Lincoln School Principal Edward Chevillot announced his retirement effective today after serving 30 years with the district. He indicated Mr. Chevillot will be greatly missed and his shoes hard to fill.  Superintendent Hall further indicated he has been reviewing a few scenarios and hopes to bring something to the Board in July.

 

Yeas:  Curtis, Cochran, Proulx, Pingatore, Smith, Wolski, Wilson

Nays:  None

Absent:  None                              

Motion Carried.

 

______________________________

Daniel L. Smith, Board President

______________________________

Melissa S. Pingatore, Board Secretary

______________________________

Judy L. Sirk, Recording Secretary