Montpelier Board of School CommissionersMinutesMinutes - October 2, 2013

Minutes - October 2, 2013

1.       Call to Order The meeting was called to order at 7:04 p.m.

2.       Adjust/Review Agenda No changes.

3.       Public Comments None.

4.   Presentation of Award Superintendent Ricca presented Mr. Phillips with a certificate from the Vermont School Boards Association in recognition of his ten years of service on the board.

5.   Visit with MSMS Principal Principal Arnold provided a snapshot of the first month of school at MSMS, as well as a PowerPoint presentation in regard to the potential transition of fifth grade to MSMS. Information contained in the presentation was collected from two conversations with the middle school staff. Items covered included logistics, enrollment, staffing, concerns, a timeline, and feedback. The Board thanked Principal Arnold for her informative report.

6.    Visit with Director of Curriculum & Technology Michael Martin, Director of Curriculum & Technology, shared his view of Montpelier Public Schools. Mr. Martin discussed some of what he has seen around the District in the early days of his new position. Included on that list were relationships, relevance, rigor, inclusion, community, teamwork, engagement, green, culture, colleagueship and student-directed learning. The network rebuild project and technology in-service sessions scheduled for October 15, 2013 were discussed, as well as ePortfolios, personalized learning plans, and proficiency-based assessments. The need for documenting progression of learning was discussed, as well as the need to combine traditional learning with experiential learning. The Board thanked Mr. Martin for his report, and Mr. Martin thanked everyone for the welcome he has received in Montpelier.

7.    Review Superintendent Limitations Policy 2.0 – Global Superintendent Constraint Following discussion, there was consensus to excuse Superintendent Ricca from reporting on this specific policy due to its generality and lack of focus.

8.    Discuss Expectations for Quarterly Financial Reports Superintendent Ricca asked the Board for specific information they want included with quarterly financial reports. Mr. Jones would like Business Manager Cindy Rossi to identify unexpected trends, i.e., categories where the District is spending at a pace higher than planned or lower than planned. Mr. VanDerlip commented that it would be helpful to have the Business Manager present during the budget building process. Mr. VanDerlip identified the need to look at staffing ratios, as well as the need to have conversations about what is behind those numbers. He would also like to hear Business Manager Rossi’s ideas for identifying potential savings and exploring alternate revenue sources. In summary, the Board is looking for more commentary in regard to interpretation of the numbers rather than just the numbers themselves.

9.    Discuss Topic for November 6, 2013 Public Invitation Meeting Following discussion, there was consensus to invite the public for the presentation on special education scheduled for the evening of November 6th. The presentation will cover general background information for understanding special education, including basic information as to how the program is funded, as well as commentary from the District’s new Director of Support Services as to MPS’ way of service and predictions for the future.

10.Discuss Spiral International Agreement – Possible Action Item to Sign Agreement Minimal additions to the contract were suggested by Mr. VanDerlip, the first around the issue of students being eligible to receive diplomas “upon meeting graduation requirements”, and the second around the issue of the District maintaining control over the number of students they are willing to accept. Mr. Phillips moved, seconded by Mr. VanDerlip, to move forward and sign the agreements that are necessary and to incorporate Mr. VanDerlip’s two recommendations. Motion carried unanimously.

11.   Consent Agenda

a.       Minutes of September 18, 2013

b.       Warrants

Mr. Jones moved, seconded by Mrs. Bean, to approve the consent agenda including minutes of the September 18, 2013 regular meeting and Warrants 18, 19 and 20 dated October 10, 2013 in the amounts of $516,942.28, $31,799.91 and $25,872.83 respectively. Motion carried unanimously.

12.   Announcements/Review Meeting (+/∆)

-          Feedback from the last meeting was shared.

-          Students defeated the faculty 5-3 in kickball.

-          A great time was had by all in the dodgeball tournament.

13. Adjournment On a motion duly made and seconded, the board voted unanimously to adjourn at 9:01 p.m.


Heather Michaud





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