• June 10, 2014 Regular Business Meeting 

    Discussion, Reports and Information Items

    Heights Lites

    The School Board honored Columbia Heights High School students Katie Bluhm (right), Audrey Kruse (second right) and Kira Ericson (not pictured). The trio placed third in the long trio division at the Minnesota State High School League (MSHSL) State Synchronized Swimming Meet.

    Reports from the School Board

    • Chair Scott Bardell participated in the School Board Policy Sub-Committee meeting, attended an Association of Metropolitan School District (AMSD) meeting, and had a meeting with Superintendent Kelly.

    • Vice-Chair John Larkin enjoyed the Highland Elementary School picnic and the Columbia Academy choir concert, met with Superintendent Kelly, shared he is "proudly displaying" a Home of a Hylander yard sign, had a meeting with Director Lori Meyer and attended a chair meeting.
    • Treasurer Lori Meyer had no report.
    • Clerk Missy Lee had no report.

    • Director Ted Landwehr participated in the School Board Policy Sub-Committee, shared that the high school all-night party is right after graduation, attended several West Metro Education Program (WMEP) Board meetings and a WMEP graduation, was a guest at the Columbia Heights/Fridley Rotary Club meeting, attended the girls' softball team banquet, a state Chamber of Commerce meeting and several Lions' Club meetings. Director Landwehr also met with Superintendent Kelly, Director of Finance and Operations Bill Holmgren and Director of Technology and Security Services Bryan Hennekens regarding the levy and the Personalized Learning Initiative.

    • Director Laura Palmer attended the Columbia Academy choir concert, reported out on a Northeast Metro Intermediate District 916 (916) Board Meeting, attended that district's Wells' North and Wells' South, Metro Heights Academy, Area Learning Center and Career and Technical (CAT) graduations.  Director Palmer also attended the School Board Policy Sub-Committee meeting.

    Superintendent Kathy Kelly's Report

    • Attended, with Chair Bardell, an ASMD Board of Directors meeting that focused on policy changes and financial implications to Minnesota school districts.

    • Reported that she attended an AMSD Executive Board retreat focusing on that organization's mission and teamwork.

    • Enjoyed, with Columbia Heights High School Principal Dan Wrobleski, Columbia Academy Principal Mary Bussman and K-12 Activities Director Matt Miller, the Hennepin Theater Trust Showcase Spotlight awards.  Superintendent Kelly shared that a total of nine high school students received multiple leading and supporting awards.  The Theater Department also received a community service award; Superintendent Kelly congratulated the faculty, staff and student performers for a job extremely well done.  To read the news release, click here.

    • Shared the Valley View Elementary School
       addition groundbreaking was very successful.  Superintendent Kelly thanked the School Board members who attended, Columbia Heights Mayor Gary Peterson, representatives from the companies who will be doing the construction and all of the families.  She also shared a special thank you to the "wonderful" school choir (see video).

    • Noted she had a positive site visit to Columbia Heights High School to review programs and building concerns.

    • Participated in organizational meeting with cooks, clerical, custodians and educational assistants on negotiations.

    • Superintendent Kathy Kelly (left) and Columbia Heights High School Principal Dan Wrobleski lead the School Board to the platform for the 2014 graduation ceremony.
      Attended and enjoyed several graduation parties and plans to attend more after the June 11, 2014 graduation.  Click here to see pictures of the graduation.

    • Participated in School Board Policy Sub-Committee and School Board Chair meeting and thanked School Board members for meeting with her since the last meeting.

    Discussion, Reports, Information Items

    American Indian Education: Director of Student Services Nicole Halabi introduced Fridley Public Schools Director of Educational Services Imina Oftedahl who shared that the American Indian Education program is a collaboration with Spring Lake Park, Fridley and Columbia Heights Public Schools.  She reported that the program currently serves approximately 200 students, but that the total financial allocation was affected by the federal sequestration, negatively impacting the services they are able to provide.  The new budget is a decrease from the previous year; they will still work hard to provide quality services on a more limited budget. Photo at left is from the April 26, 2014 Native American Pow Wow held at the Hylander Center.

    K-12 Student Handbook: North Park Elementary School Principal Cacek said the elementary change focuses on the elementary media release form, saying if the school does not receive a signed letter from a parent/guardian, the school will assume it has permission to photograph the child and possibly publish his/her photo.  Assistant Principal Rick Ostby shared Columbia Academy changes include updates on the school calendar, parent teacher conferences, staff contact information, adding two school rules, attendance, cafeteria, meal price increases, daily schedules and more information on the Personalized Learning Initiative. Click here to view the Columbia Academy PowerPoint presentation. Columbia Heights High School Assistant Principal Adam Nelson shared their changes include lunch price increases, discipline rules, district and staff calendar updates, athletic fees and NCAA rules updates. Click here to view the Columbia Heights High School PowerPoint presentation.

    Columbia Academy Personalized Learning Initiative (PLI) update: Director of Teaching and Learning Duane Berkas introduced Director of Technology and Security Services Bryan Hennekens and Personalized Learning Initiative Facilitator Amy Oelschlager. The two presented a comprehensive update on the Personalized Learning Initiative at Columbia Academy.  Click here to view the PowerPoint presentation.

    K-12 Activities and Athletics update: K-12 Activities Director Matt Miller's presentation included spring participation for sports, band, choir and the high school musical.  He reported that the activities and athletics presence will be upgraded on the website.  Director Miller shared an update on the District Twin-City football league and provided information on a variety of summer camps.  He also announced that the 4 x 100 track relay team placed third in the state competition and broke five school records (students to be recognized at a future Heights Lites). Click here to view the PowerPoint presentation.

    Northeast Metro 916 Health and Safety Levy: Director Holmgren said Columbia Heights Public Schools is a member of the Northeast Metro Intermediate District 916.  He noted that of our District's levy, $5,555.02 goes to NE 916 for health and safety projects.  Director Holmgren said he will request the School Board to act on the NE 916 Health and Safety levy at the June 27, 2014 meeting.

    Area Learning Center (ALC) Fiscal Host: Director Holmgren said that as Columbia Heights Public Schools is the fiscal host for the ALC, this District will receive $8,400.  He will present a request to the School Board for action at the June 27, 2014 Business Meeting. 

    Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) grants:  Director Berkas shared that school districts receiving ESEA Title I, II and III funding are required to submit an annual application for these funds with a budget and narrative that describes how districts plan to use this money.  He advised the School Board that he will present a proposed budget at the next School Board business meeting for our District.  Click here to view the PowerPoint presentation.

    2014-2018 Comprehensive Communications Plan: Superintendent Kathy Kelly shared that a priority of District Administration this year has been to establish a Communication Department, conduct a Communication Audit and develop a Comprehensive Communication Plan, all of which have been accomplished. Director of Communications Casey Mahon gave an overview of the new plan to be implemented July 1, 2014.  Click on the graphic (right) to view or download the Comprehensive Communications Plan. Click here to view the PowerPoint presentation.


    Key Dates:

    • June 17, 6 p.m., School Board Work Session, Community Room
    • June 24, 7 p.m., Regular School Board Meeting, Community Room
    • July 4, District Offices closed
    • August 13, 7 p.m., Regular School Board Meeting, Community Room

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