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Board Meeting Minutes from November 20, 2017

Old School House Illustration for Header

Pioneer Elementary School

1937 Dover Road

Billings, MT   59105     Telephone (406)-373-5357

Mission Statement:  Our mission is to serve the community and the school by creating a safe environment that fosters Respect, Trust, Accountability, and Responsibility while promoting life-long learning for all.



Regular Meeting Minutes . . . . . . . . . . . . . . November 20, 2017

Presented for Approval . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  January 8, 2018


DATE:                        November 20, 2017


TIME:             6:00 p.m.


PLACE:          Pioneer School, Main Building, Room 105


MEMBERS    Bill Bullard, Chairperson

PRESENT:      Kari Jones, Trustee

Sarah O’Brien, Trustee



ABSENT:       None


CLERK:          Marilyn Michael


ADMIN:         Melissa Schnitzmeier


STAFF:           None


VISITORS:     None


GUESTS:        None






Trustee, Bill Bullard called the meeting of the trustees of Pioneer Elementary School District #41 to order in Room 105 of the main building, Monday, November 20, 2017 at 6:00 pm.  Trustee, Bill Bullard welcomed all those attending.  Trustee, Bill Bullard read the Montana Law about public meetings.


  1. MINUTE APPROVAL: Sarah O’Brien made a motion to approve the minutes of the regular meeting of October 9, 2017.  Kari Jones seconded the motion.  The vote was unanimous; the motion carried.



Staff Shout Outs:

  • Connie held an incredibly successful Fall Book Fair bringing in $1500 worth of books back to our Panther Library and the fundraiser brought in $795 plus another $600+ from Barnes & Noble in gift cards for the next book purchases from the purchases people made that day.
  • Taylor – She has been coming up with some outstanding ideas to get our Panthers more involved with community efforts.
  • School Board – Thank you for purchasing lunch for teachers/staff! We had Blues BBQ and it was amazing.
  • The entire Panther Team
    • Hosted successful Parent/Teacher Conferences
    • Contributed to a very successful bake sale and helped to package everything for the sale!
    • Is contributing to work INCREDIBLY hard while we plow through change in efforts to make our school a better place.

Curriculum & Instruction (Team Focus Areas)

  • Framework for Teaching (MT-EPAS) – IT is a developmental, standards driven, data-based model for evaluating teachers within their professional practice. Encourages professional growth and student success by addressing areas of need and eliminating inconsistencies.
    • Self-assessment within the framework.
    • Identifying evidence of practice in each domain.

RTI/MBI = Multi-Tiered Systems of Support

  • Behavior/Academic Data Monitored
  • Classroom Self-Assessment
    • Teachers use to create actionable plan
    • Team uses to create actionable plan

Professional Development

  • Classroom management training – November 13th @ Big Timber (MSSA) Jerica, Alisa, Taylor & Dylan attended.
  • MT-EPAS Training for Supervisors – November 14th – Melissa attended.

Administrative Focus Areas – Trimester 2

  • Evaluation of Staff Underway
  • 2018-2019 Budget Planning
  • 2018-2019 Classroom Assignment Planning
  • 2018-2019 Calendar Planning

Other News/Updates

  • Parent/Teacher Focus Group
    • Survey sent out (see attached results)
    • School Website will now have a discussion forum.
  • Bake Sale – Raised $400 for Flakesgiving
  • PTA – No PTA meeting in December

Looking Ahead

  • Upcoming Events:
    • 11/22 – 11/24 – No School – Thanksgiving Break
    • 12/1 – Pioneer Christmas Party @ High Horse
    • 12/19 – Christmas Program
    • 12/21 – 1/2 – No School – Christmas Break
  1. SECRETARY/CLERK POSITION – Marilyn reported that she attended a conference on Elections put on by MASBO.  It was very informative and a calendar was given with all of the dates and deadlines for Elections.  There are Yellowstone County Clerk meetings monthly.  Unfortunately, to attend these Marilyn would need a substitute to answer phones and take care of the office while she was gone.  She explained that she doesn’t want to make the school spend money on a substitute for her to attend these but feels they would be beneficial to attend.  They are held at the Montana Club at 11:30.  She is not sure if they are always on the same day of the month.  Bill asked if we could get a parent to volunteer.  Marilyn explained that the person would still have to be background checked as any other sub would.  Bill asked Melissa to put this on the discussion forum.  Marilyn also reported that W-2’s are here & 1099 are ordered.  Todd will be helping with this when it is time.  He also has been helping to get the trial balances with the county as there have been some issues from before she was clerk that are still getting straightened out.  Marilyn told the board that she will be having knee surgery on December 21st.  This should not affect anything of her work as it is supposed to be a fairly easy recovery.
  2. UPDATE ON BREACH OF CONTRACT COMPLAINT PROCEDURE – Bill explained that he has a call in to Kyle at OPI about the breach of contract complaints.  He feels at this time that we should not impede the futures of the 2 teachers that did not fulfill their signed contracts as the precedent was set that this was allowed in the past with no repercussions.  The hope is that this will not be allowed in the future.  He will still follow up with Kyle however.  Kari made a motion to table this item until Bill has more information.  Bill seconded the motion.  The vote was unanimous; the motion carried.
  3. BUS/BUS DRIVER – Melissa reported that Cindy will be taking Daniel out driving this weekend.  Melissa told Daniel to take his time so that he is completely ready to take the test.  When he is licensed, he will be put onto the sub list for the bus drivers.  Bill will attempt to contact another person that had shown interest earlier in the year.




  1. SHEPHERD STUDENTATTENDANCE AGREEMENT – Marilyn presented Student Attendance Agreement from Shepherd.  There is a $200 fee for the Junior High students that we will pay in the spring.  At this time there are 28 Junior High Students and 48 Elementary Students that are attending Shepherd from Pioneer School District.
  2. BUS REPAIRS – Marilyn reported that Cindy felt the Thomas bus was using oil, smoking and sounded like the valves may have a problem.  It was taken in to Owen’s. They found nothing specific wrong with it, it may just be due to getting old and starting to have problems.  They said it may be time to decide whether to overhaul it or just run it until it needs replacing.  She is driving the Blue Bird bus most of the time as she feels it just runs better.  It is the older of the two but has less miles as it was normally only used on the morning route, not two per day like the Thomas.  Marilyn wanted the board to be aware of the situation in case they would like to check into replacing it.  The board asked that Cindy attend the next meeting so they can hear her thoughts on it.
  3. BUILDING USE REQUEST – Melissa submitted a building use request for her daughter’s Girl Scout Troop #2448 to use the old building once per month.  Meeting dates and times will vary.  Kari made a motion to allow Girl Scout Troop 2448 to use the old building once per month.  Sarah seconded the motion.  The vote was unanimous; the motion carried.
  4. ADMINISTRATOR REVIEW – Sarah made a motion to table the administrator review until the January meeting.  Kari seconded the motion.  The vote was unanimous; the motion carried.


  1. OCTOBER FINANCIAL REPORT            The clerk presented claims warrants numbered 20931 through 2955 in the amount of $10,049.87 and the payroll warrants numbered 8964 through 8967 in the amount of $38,976.63.  The ACH and Direct deposits were included in the amount. The clerk presented the trial balance sheets for each fund and a monthly report stating each line item YTD and budget balance remaining for the each fund.  After review of the report, Sarah O’Brien moved to approve the financial reports. Kari Jones seconded the motion.  The vote was unanimous; the motion carried.





  1. Montana Department of Labor Safety Health Bureau survey, brochures and posters.  Marilyn will contact them to see what we need to do.
  2. Weekly agendas from October 16 through December 1st
  3. November newsletter
  4. MTSBA survey for the board, Bill will take it and fill it out.


  1. Marilyn informed the board that we have a lot of points on the credit card. We could purchase gift cards from Visa, Amazon or several other places.  Melissa and Marilyn will look at the website and determine what to do with the points.
  2. Sarah reported that she spoke to a sign company about placing signs at Hwy 312 at Dover Road and Pioneer Road to point the way to Pioneer School. She said she was told that the County does not allow any new signage on Hwy 312.  It may be possible to make signs and put them on private landowners’ property, but it still may be a problem with the County.




A motion was made by Kari Jones to adjourn the meeting. Bill Bullard seconded the motion.  The vote was unanimous; motion carried.  The meeting ended at 7:20 pm.  The next scheduled regular meeting is Monday, January 8, 2018 at 6:00 p.m. in Room 105 of the main building.




Attest: __________________________     SIGNED: ____________________________

Bill Bullard, Board Chairperson

DATE: _________________________