• September 22, 2015 Regular Business Meeting

     Communication to the Board

    Fifty-two individuals, including students, parents, alumni and community members, addressed the School Board on the topic of complaints against School Board Director Grant Nichols.

     Acknowledgement of Contributions

    Chair John Larkin announced, and the School Board approved, a resolution for accepting current contributions in the amount of $2,448.19.  The total fiscal year 2015-2016 monetary contributions to date are $4,948.19.

     Discussion, Reports, Information Items

    • Chair John Larkin deferred his comments.
      Superintendent's Report

    Superintendent Kathy Kelly deferred her report.

    Director of Finance Bill Holmgren introduces members of his staff (from left), Special Education Finance Specialist Lori Nowacki, Administrative Assistant Britta Wipper, Accountant Kelsey Asjes and Manager of Accounting Services Phan Tu.  Unable to attend were Payroll and Benefits Specialist Teri Patterson and MARRS Manager Nicole Kenney.
    of School Business Officials International Certificate of Excellence in Financial Reporting Award: Director of Finance and Operations Bill Holmgren gave an overview of the eighth consecutive award that his department received. The award is the highest recognition for school district financial operations and is only conferred to school districts that have met or exceeded the most stringent standards for financial reporting and accountability. The Finance Department (pictured right) was selected for its excellence in the preparation and issuance of the Fiscal Year 2014 Comprehensive Annual Financial Report (CAFR).

    Opening of School Building Updates: Due to time, Principals Michele DeWitt (Highland), Jeff Cacek (North Park), Willie Fort (Valley View), Duane Berkas (Columbia Academy) and Dan Wrobleski (Columbia Heights High School) deferred their report.

    Annual Report on Staff Development: Interim Director of Teaching Zena Stenvik and Learning and Professional Development Coordinator Jennifer Babiash provided a summary of staff development for the annual report for the Minnesota Department of Education. They shared staff development projects at the District and school levels for the 2014-2015 school year and briefed on focus areas for the 2015-2016 school year. School districts are required to report staff development activities and expenditures for both their district and school sites in accordance with Minnesota Statutes, section 122A.60, Subdivision 4.  Click here for the PowerPoint presentation.

    Annual Report on World's Best Workforce: Interim Director Stenvik and Director of Communications Casey Mahon provided an overview of the second annual World's Best Workforce Report.  Ms. Stenvik discussed the report, which addresses the following five goals:

    1. All children are ready to start kindergarten.
    2. All third-graders can read at grade level.
    3. All achievement gaps between students are closed.
    4. All students are ready for career and/or postsecondary education.
    5. All students graduate from high school.

    The report will be distributed to community members by mid-October with additional data to be uploaded to the District website.  Click here for the PowerPoint presentation.  To view or download the 2015 Annual Report on World's Best Workforce, click on the above graphic.

     Action Items

    2015 Pay 2016 Preliminary Tax Levy:  Director Holmgren reported that each year this School District must take action on the preliminary levy by the end of September. He requested and received approval for the preliminary levy at the maximum level, which will guarantee this District receives all eligible revenues.  Click here for the PowerPoint presentation.

    Resolution urging the resignation of School Board member Grant Nichols: The School Board approved (three in favor, two abstaining) a resolution urging the resignation of School Board member Grant Nichols (click here for the resolution).  

      Key Dates

    • Oct. 13, Tuesday, 7 p.m., Regular School Board Meeting, Community Room
    • Oct. 15 and 16, No School, Teacher Convention
    • Oct. 20, 5 p.m., School Board Listening Session, Family Center
    • Oct. 20, 5:30 p.m., School Board Work Session, Community Room
    • Oct. 27, 7 p.m., Regular School Board Meeting, Community Room
    Do you have questions or comments?  Click here.

      School Board standing committee assignments

    Chair John Larkin
    Liaison to City of Fridley

    School Board Policy Sub-Committee
    Liaison to Highland ES

    Vice Chair Ted Landwehr
    Minnesota School Board Association
    West Metro Education Program
    Liaison to Valley View ES

    Open Position
    Association of Metropolitan School Districts
    Liaison to City of Hilltop
    Liaison to Family Center

    Treasurer Molly Lewis
    Minnesota State High School League
    School Board Policy Sub-Committee
    Liaison to Columbia Heights HS

    Clerk Laura Palmer
    NE Metro Intermediate District 916 Board

    Columbia Heights Business Council
    Liaison to North Park ES

    Director Grant Nichols
    Educational Services Cooperative Unit
    Liaison to City of Columbia Heights
    School Board Policy Sub-Committee
    Liaison to Columbia Academy