Official School Board Minutes

Regular Meeting of the School Board
April 6, 2021

The regular meeting of the Board of Education of Independent School District 270 was conducted virtually on Tuesday, April 6, 2021. The meeting was called to order at 7:00 p.m.

School Board members present online: Treasurer Steve Adams, Vice Chair Shannon Andreson, Chair Jennifer Bouchard, Director Tanya Khan, Director Kuhl, and Clerk Katie Pederson. School Board members absent: Director Fartun Ahmed.

Student Board reps present: None. Student Board reps absent: None. Staff members present: Superintendent Rhoda Mhiripiri-Reed. Staff members absent: None.

Open Agenda

Chair Bouchard explained changes to the Open Agenda portion of the agenda. The Hopkins Board of Education is now operating in a hybrid format where limited public attendance is available. She noted that two options for public comment are available one via voicemail and one via comment cards submitted by in-person attendance. No Open Agenda comments were submitted.

Reports

Superintendent

Mhiripiri-Reed updated board members on Hopkins’ return to school post Spring Break and highlighted events within the district.

Approval of Agenda

Andreson moved, Pederson seconded, to approve the agenda as presented. Those voting in favor thereof: Adams, Andreson, Khan, Kuhl, Pederson, and Bouchard. Those unable to vote: Adams. Those opposed: None. Carried.

Consent Calendar

Andreson moved, Kuhl seconded, to approve the Consent Calendar as presented: A) Approval of Minutes — Regular Meeting Conducted on March 16, 2021; B) Human Resources — Personnel Updates; C) Policies in Second Reading [807, 850 & 903]; D) Approval of School Board Election Administration Agreement; E) Notice of Resolution Establishing Combined Polling Places; F) Proposed Board Meeting Dates — 2021-22; G) Harley Hopkins Family Center 2021 Kitchen Remodel; H) Meadowbrook Elementary School Parking Lot Improvements. Those voting in favor thereof: Andreson, Khan, Kuhl, Pederson, and Bouchard. Those unable to vote: Adams. Those opposed: None. Carried. Exhibit “A”.

Treasurer’s Report

Chair Bouchard highlighted expenses of interest. Kuhl moved and seconded, to approve financial disbursements in the amount of $4,631,162.62 for the period of March 9, 2021 through March 29, 2021. Those voting in favor thereof: Andreson, Khan, Kuhl, Pederson, and Bouchard. Those unable to vote: Adams. Those opposed: None. Carried. Exhibit “B”.

Policies in First Reading — Policy 956: Relations with Law Enforcement Authorities

Lightfoot reviewed policy 956 in First Reading, noting no changes. Andreson moved, Khan, seconded to approve policy 956 in First Reading; further, the Board directs the Administration to prepare the policies for approval in Second Reading at the next meeting (as part of the Consent Calendar). Those voting in favor thereof: Adams, Andreson, Khan, Kuhl, Pederson, and Bouchard. Those opposed: None. Carried.

Revised FY 2020-2021 and Preliminary FY 2021-2022 Approval of Budget

Superintendent Mhiripiri-Reed provided grounding to the board surrounding the ongoing budget process. Director of Business Services, Tariro Chapinduka, presented the revised FY 2020-2021 budget along with the preliminary 2021-2022 budget asking for board approval.

Chapinduka explained that due to the changes in enrollment and the effects of COVID-19, the decision was made to revise the previously approved budget that was presented in June 2020 to ensure our numbers are aligning with our resources. After factoring in funding from CARES Act (ESSER, GEER, CRF) and stimulus packages from the state and federal government, the revised budget included an approximate $1.5 million dollar increase in the projected General Fund Revenue and an approximate $2.2 million dollar increase in the projected General Fund Expenditures. Thus, resulting in a projected $729,175 deficit for fiscal year 2021.

Due to cost saving measures implemented in fiscal year 2019-2020, set aside resources will cover the projected deficit without dipping into General or Trust funds. Chapinduka went on to present the preliminary 2021-2022 budget highlighting some assumptions put into play from community and district communications. These assumptions in conjunction with the Predictable Staffing Model, have led to the following projections:

  • Projected General Fund Revenue: $105,032,924.00. Allocated by:
    • 61% - Schools
    • 6% - Departments
    • 32% - Districtwide
  • Projected General Fund Expenditures: $105,032,924.00.
  • Projected Surplus/Deficit: $0 (zero).

Board members shared questions and comments surrounding the change in course of action from 2020 to present noting the positive components of transparency asking for continued and increased communication from school leaders as the process continues to ensure leaders and administrators know they have the support and ear of the board. Adams moved, Khan seconded, to approve the FY 2020-2021 revised budget and the FY 2021-2022 preliminary budget. Those voting in favor thereof: Adams, Andreson, Khan, Kuhl, Pederson, and Bouchard. Those opposed: None. Carried.

Staffing Resolution

Assistant Superintendent, Nik Lightfoot provided an overview of the staffing process and what can be expected for the coming months. The resolution “Modifying Educational Programs and Positions” is in place to direct administration to move forward with the reductions and transformations within the system to meet the terms of the financial limitations outlined by the approved preliminary FY 2021-2022 budget. Finalization of available resources will take place over the next few weeks to allow for a minimal reduction in staff and planning for potential additional resources.

Kuhl moved, Khan seconded to approve the resolution Modifying Educational Programs and Positions.

WHEREAS, the School Board of Independent School District 270 adopted a resolution on February 16, 2021 directing the administration to make recommendations for modifications in programs and positions, and

WHEREAS, said programming and fiscal resources available have been preliminarily approved by the School Board,

BE IT RESOLVED BY THE School Board of Independent School District 270, that the administration use the preliminary 2021-2022 school-year budget to determine the specific FTE reductions that are necessary to meet the 2021-2022 school-year financial terms and present the necessary licensed FTE reductions at the April 20th, 2021 School Board meeting.

Those voting in favor thereof: Adams, Andreson, Khan, Kuhl, Pederson, and Bouchard. Those opposed: None. Carried.

Board Member Reports

Board members reported on recent educational activities/events in which they have participated.

Incidental Reports

Assistant Director of Innovation, Design and Learning (IDL) Allegra Smisek, Program Director, Jessica Glidden, and Cassie Buffalohead American Indian Parent Advisory Committee (AIPAC) Chair presented their compliance report for the AIPAC. In the 2019-2020 school year, the AIPAC casted a vote of non-concurrence that the school board and district were not compliant with the MN Statutes and were not meeting the needs of American Indian students. They touched on the positive impact that Director Glidden has made in her short time with the AIPAC and updated board members on the recommendations and current processes in the AIPAC programming at Hopkins.

With this, on February 11, 2021 AIPAC issued a vote of concurrence for the 2020-2021 School year as follows:

WHEREAS, the school board or district has an AIPAC composed of parents/guardians of American Indian children who are eligible for Indian education programs, American Indian language and culture teachers and paraprofessionals, American Indian teachers, American Indian counselors, American Indian adults enrolled in educational programming, and American Indian representatives from community;

WHEREAS, the school board or district affords the AIPAC the necessary information and the opportunity to effectively express their views concerning all aspects of American Indian education and the educational needs of the American Indian children enrolled in the school(s) and program(s); and,

WHEREAS, the AIPAC is directly involved with and advises the school board and district staff on Indian Education program planning; and,

WHEREAS, the AIPAC develops and submits recommendations to the school board and district staff pertaining to the needs of American Indian students.

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED, that the AIPAC concurs that the school board and district are compliant with Minnesota Statutes, section 124D.78, and that the school board and district are meeting the needs of American Indian students.

We, the American Indian Parent Advisory Committee, issue a Vote of Concurrence. We attest that the school board and district are compliant with Minnesota Statutes and that the school board and/or district are meeting the needs of American Indian students.

Andreson moved, Adams seconded, to approve the incidental report. Those voting in favor thereof: Adams, Andreson, Khan, Kuhl, Pederson, and Bouchard. Those opposed: None. Carried.

Andreson moved, Pederson seconded, to adjourn the meeting at 8:48 p.m. Those voting in favor thereof: Adams, Andreson, Khan, Kuhl, Pederson, and Bouchard. Those opposed: None. Carried.

 

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Kathrine Pederson, School Board Clerk