• School Board Report

    Jan. 9, 2018

    Organization of the School Board 

    Election of Chair

    Molly Lewis nominated Naty Severson. Naty Severson nominated John Larkin. The School Board voted John Larkin as Chair.

    Election of Vice Chair

    Molly Lewis nominated Naty Severson.  Lorien Mueller nominated Hala Asamarai. The School Board voted Naty Severson as Vice Chair.

    Election of Clerk

    Naty Severson nominated Hala Asamarai. The School Board voted Hala Asamarai as Clerk.

    Election of Treasurer

    Molly Lewis nominated Lorien Mueller. The School Board voted Lorien Mueller as Treasurer. 

    Appointment of Parliamentarian/Adoption of Robert's Rules of Order

    The School Board approved Robert's Rules of Order Newly Revised, except where modified by School Board policy, as the official rules. Chair Larkin appointed Laura Palmer as Parliamentarian.

    Meeting Dates and Times

    The School Board approved the following: Regular Meetings will be held 7 p.m. on the second and fourth Tuesday of the month with the exception of December in which the meeting will be held the third Tuesday.  There will be no meeting March 26 (Spring Break), all of July and Aug. 14 (primary election). The Regular Meeting will be Aug. 21 and the Work Session Aug. 28. The School Board also approved no new business will be taken up after 10:45 p.m. except by unanimous consent of the members.  The School Board also agreed there will be an option of adding a Work Session. Work Sessions are scheduled the third Tuesday of the month at 5:30 p.m. School Board meetings are held in the District Community Room.

    Appointment of Board Representatives

     The School Board voted and approved the appointment, effective immediately, of the following members to the applicable standing committees:

    Appointment of Board Building Liaisons

    The School Board approved the appointment of the following members as liaisons for school assignments for the period July 1, 2017 through June 30, 2018:

    • Chair Larkin: Columbia Academy
    • Vice Chair Severson: Valley View Elementary School
    • Treasurer Mueller: North Park Elementary School
    • Clerk Asamarai: Family Center                 
    • Director Lewis: Highland Elementary School                
    • Director Palmer: Columbia Heights High School

    Salaries and Per Diem for Board Members and Board Officers

    The School Board approved member and officer salaries and per diem payments for 2018 with no increase.

    Designation of Depositories

    The School Board approved, through resolution, the following institutions as depositories for Columbia Heights Public Schools:

    • LaSalle National Bank
    • US Bank 
    • Northeast Bank
    • Minnesota School District Liquid Asset Fund Plus
    • Wells Fargo

    The School Board also voted that investment brokers Morgan Stanley and PMA Financial Network are authorized and directed to honor orders, when signed by the Treasurer and the Clerk, for the withdrawal or transfer of funds on deposit as instructed.

    Designation of Electronic Transfer Designees

    The School Board approved Director of Finance and Operations Kristine Carr and Deputy Director of Finance Denise Sundstrom to manage electronic transfers.

    Designation of Legal Counsel and Contacts

    The School Board appointed the following individuals as legal counsels for Columbia Heights Public Schools:

    • Karen Kepple, Northeast Metro 916
    • Laura Tubbs Booth, Booth & Lavorato LLC
    • Joseph Langel, Ratwik, Roszak, and Moloney, P.A. 
    • Thomas Deans, Knutson Flynn & Deans P.A

    Designation of Election Clerk

    The School Board approved the reappointment of Dawn Hoium as the School District's Election Clerk. 

    Designation of Official Newspaper

    Four newspapers were invited to submit bids of which three were received. The bids were reviewed to determine if they met the requirements of Minnesota Statute 331A.04, circulation, distribution and pricing per column inch. The School Board approved the Sun Focus as the official newspaper for the school district.

    Jan. 9, 2018 Regular School Board Meeting 

    Communication to the School Board 

    A community member addressed the District's budget, enrollment and bullying. One parent asked about procedures. Chair Larkin shared Columbia Heights City Council Member Nick Novitsky had hoped to introduce himself as the liaison to the District, but had to leave to attend another meeting.

    Reports from Members of the Board

    Chair John Larkin participated in the Dec. 12 School Board Regular Business Meeting and the Jan. 9 Special Called Meeting. He also attended the Columbia Academy musical "Into the Woods, Jr." and the Columbia Heights High School choir concert. Chair Larkin shared he also had conversations with School Board members, constituents and Superintendent Kathy Kelly.
    Student actors from Into the Woods, Jr
    Vice Chair Naty Severson participated in the Dec. 12 School Board Regular Business Meeting, the Jan. 9 Special Called Meeting. She also attended the Columbia Academy musical and a RISE UP breakfast recognizing students at that school. She also attended a Boosters' Club holiday gathering.

    Treasurer Lorien Mueller participated in the Dec. 12 School Board Regular Business Meeting and the Jan. 9 Special Called Meeting. She attended the Columbia Academy musical, a PTO meeting at the middle school and a Silver Lakes Symphonic Winds holiday concert. She also had conversations with parents and School Board members.
    Clerk Hala Asamarai was not present.

    Director Laura Palmer participated in Dec. 12 School Board Regular Business Meeting and the Jan. 9 Special Called Meeting. She also attended the high school choir concert.

    Director Molly Lewis participated in Dec. 12 School Board Regular Business Meeting and the Jan. 9 Special Called Meeting. She attended the Columbia Academy musical. Director Lewis also attended high school boys' basketball games and had conversations with constituents, School Board members and Superintendent Kelly.

    Reports and Information Items

    Early Childhood student Early Childhood/ECSE Vision Card

    Director of Community Education Kristen Stuenkel, Education Support Coordinator Marsha Walker and Early Childhood Manager Karen Kramer gave the annual Strategic Roadmap Vision Card update. Included in their presentation were the following:

    • Enrollment Data
    • Demographic Data
    • Achievement Data
    • Implementation Data
    • Focus area updates: Programs and Strategies
    • Outreach: Parents and Community
    • Looking ahead: Goals and Planning

    View the PowerPoint presentation.

    Strategic Roadmap F - Fiscally Responsible

    Each year, aligned to the District Mission and the Strategic Roadmap, directors report out on the status of their respective Strategic Direction Vision Cards. Director of Finance and Operations Kristine Carr provided information related to Strategic Roadmap F: Fiscally Responsible.

    View the PowerPoint presentation.

    State and Federal Resolutions

    Director Carr presented draft resolutions from the Minnesota School Boards Association (MSBA) calling for both the state and federal governments to fully fund the mandated cost of Special Education Services in this District. Director Carr said MSBA has requested individual school districts to pass resolutions and forward such to state and federal government entities. The School Board will be asked to vote on the two resolutions at the next Business Meeting.

    View the proposed State of Minnesota Resolution.  View the proposed Federal Resolution.

    Bid Recommendation

    Director Carr provided the School Board a recommendation to award the high school domestic cold water piping replacement contract to Horwitz Mechanical from Hallberg Engineering, the only bid received for this project.  The initial portion of the project, she said, was completed in the summer of 2017; this work will complete the project. The project is funded with Capital Levy dollars and Long Term Facility Maintenance dollars, included in the next budget. This request will be put forward as an Action Item, with a request for approval, at the next Business Meeting.

    Summer Capital Projects

    Director Carr briefed on 2018 summer capital projects, funded by Long Term Facility Maintenance (LTFM), Capital or 2014 Capital Project Levy. These projects are:

    • High school cold water re-piping (see above)
    • High school tennis courts
    • Highland Elementary School new boiler system

    View the PowerPoint presentation

    Board Topics

    Treasurer Mueller said Columbia Academy is hosting a Bullying Prevention PTO/Principal roundtable discussion for school parents, 5:30 p.m., Tuesday, Jan. 16. Director Lewis shared Columbia Heights High School will have an informational session for eighth-graders and their parents, 7 p.m., Thursday, Jan. 11.

    Upcoming Key Dates

    5 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 16, School Board Listening Session
    7 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 23, Regular School Board Meeting, Community Room
    Jan. 29, Monday, No School
    5:30 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 30, School Board Work Session, Community Room
    Feb. 9, Friday, No School
    7 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 13, Regular School Board Meeting

    School Board Committee Assignments

    Chair John Larkin: Columbia Heights Business Council, School Board Policy Sub-Committee, Liaison to the City of Hilltop and Columbia Academy.

    Vice Chair Naty Severson: Association of Metropolitan School Districts, School Board Policy Sub-Committee and Liaison to the City of Fridley and Valley View Elementary School.

    Treasurer Lorien Mueller: Educational Cooperative Service Unit and Liaison to North Park Elementary School.

    Clerk Hala Asamarai: TIES, School Board Policy Sub-Committee, Liaison to City of Columbia Heights and the Family Center.

    Director Laura Palmer:, NE Metro Intermediate District 916 Board, School Board Policy Sub-Committee and Liaison to Columbia Heights High School.

    Director Molly Lewis: Minnesota School Board Association Legislative Liaison, Minnesota State High School League and Liaison to Highland Elementary School.

    For more information on the School Board Report, call or email Communications Director Casey Mahon at 763-528-4503 or mahonc@colheights.k12.mn.us.