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Board Meeting Minutes from October 9, 2017

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 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . October 9, 2017

Presented for Approval . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  November 13, 2017


DATE:                        October 9, 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 (via video)



ABSENT:       None

CLERK:          Marilyn Michael

ADMIN:         Melissa Schnitzmeier

STAFF:           Jami Burns arrived at 6:00 pm

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, October 9, 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: Kari Jones made a motion to approve the minutes of the regular meeting of September 11, 2017.  Bill Bullard seconded the motion.  The vote was unanimous; the motion carried.
    • Melissa began her administrator report with shout outs to staff:  The entire staff as they rocked a difficult month, worked hard to gather all necessary data and successfully place our students into RTI Tiers based on each individual student’s needs.  Also to Connie for working so hardtop finish up baseline testing the students in K – 6 on NWEA MAPS and 2st & 2nd on Dolch Sight Words.  And also to Mrs. Michael for stepping up and making sure our bus situation was taken care of.  She handled it beautifully.
    • Curriculum & Instruction:  RTI- Response to Intervention Progress.
      • Implementation – At risk students identified & assigned to Tier II (In class interventions & pull out Title services assigned)
      • Below grade level student identified & assigned to Tier I (In class interventions assigned)
      • Be-weekly assessment of interventions has began
    • MBI – Action Plan
      • Review of Tiered Fidelity Report (see attached) revealed gaps that needed to be addressed prior to initiating Tier II
      • PAWS Academy – Monday & Thursday afternoons 2:45 – 3:#0
      • Continued practice of procedures
      • Restorative Justice – Circle Time implemented school-wide
    • Looking Ahead – Activities Related to Goals
      • No School – PIR Days October 19 – 20
      • End of Trimester 1 – October 27
      • Fall Barnes & Noble Book Fair – October 28 11:00 – 3:00
    • Professional Development
      • Montana Reading Conference – Oct 19/20 – Jerica, Dylan, Taylor & Alisa registered
      • MCEL – Leadership Conference – Oct 19/20 – Melissa registered
      • Classroom Management Training – Nov 13 @ BigTimber (MSSA) New staff to attend (Subs Permitting)
    • Administrative Focus Areas – Trimester 1
      • Continued Staff Development
      • Evaluation/Supervision of Staff Underway
      • Beginning to plan for 2018-19 Budget
    • Reports & Grants – Completed
      • Title I Grant
      • GT Grant
      • TEAMS Accreditation Report
      • Fall AIM Data Count – Current Count 49
      • In Progress
      • Continuous School Improvement Plan – Due 10/30
    • Other News/Updates
      • School Website – Pat built our website with accessibility regulations that were current at that time.  He is reviewing the current regulations and will update as required.  Should be a fairly easy task
      • Speed Issue – Radar signs are around $7000 each
      • REAP Grant Funds
        • We were awarded $12,449.  Of this $2725 was spent on MSSA membership, $2264 on Discovery Education (Social Studies/Science Curriculum) $190 on Technology conference fees.  There is $7270 remaining.
        • Title IV – Student Support & Academic Enrichment
          • This is new this year, we were awarded $5077, this is added to our Title I funding.  We will use it to offset some of our instructional aide salary.
        • Budget Reduction under 17-7-140 MCA – UPDATE – The Governor’s Budget Office has asked OPI to prepare for a 9.57% budget reduction (previously 10%) in accordance with statute:  The committee met on October 4th & 5th to make recommendations to the Governor.  After this, OPI will have definitive budget direction that will be shared with districts.  Note:  Base Aid and Special Education Funding to local districts are exempt from the proposed budget reductions.




  1.  Secretary/Clerk Position –Marilyn reported that with Todd’s help she has completed the Payroll and the quarterly reports that included Unemployment, Workmen’s Comp and the Federal 941 reports.  She also reported that she is feeling much more confident in a lot of the aspects of the clerk job although there are still new things coming all the time.  Now that the beginning of the year updates are completed, she is not having to work so much and take so much home with her.
  2. Bus Driver/Bus Routes – Daniel contacted Cynthia about helping him practice driving the bus.  He is scheduled to take the driving test on November 6th.  At this time, both buses are broken down, so Cynthia was not able to schedule a time with Daniel.  The AM route is arriving at school at 8:10. The board feels it should be here by 8:05 to give time for students to do the pledge and be in their classrooms by 8:10.  Marilyn explained that we have a 90 day grace period from the County to run the 1 AM route, the 90 days will be up December 8th.  We must send the County Superintendent approved minutes which stating which routes we are going to be using.  The minutes from tonight will be approved at the November meeting so if we wait until the November meeting to decide we will be past our 90 days.  Kari made a motion to adopt the one a.m. route for the remainder of the year with the students arriving at 8:05 under normal road conditions.  Sarah seconded the motion.  The vote was unanimous; the motion carried.  Melissa will send out a text to let parents know the bus will be leaving a little sooner & ask Cynthia to leave a little sooner in the morning so she is arriving by 8:05 a.m.
  3. Policy Updates – The following policies were discussed:  Revisions for Policies: 1005FE, 1006FE, 1009FE, 3224, 3416, 5122F, 7231 and 7231P.  New Policies:  1014FE and 1014Fe-F1, 3214, 4350 and 4331.  Kari made a motion to adopt all of the policies recommended for update and new policies by MTSBA at this time and also including policy 4331 on Community Relations that we have not ever had.  Sarah seconded the motion.  The vote was unanimous; the motion carried
  4. E-Rate – Schools can access up to $2 million dollars for updated broad band service through the E-Rate grant that is available.  The first year would be free however after that it would cost us approximately the same amount of money that we would get out of it.






  1. Snow Crest Chemicals Contract – We have received a new contract to continue the services of Snow Crest Chemicals.  They provide chemicals and testing for the boiler.  Kevin would like us to continue this contract.  Sarah made a motion to renew the contract with Snow Crest Chemicals.  Kari seconded the motion.  The vote was unanimous; the motion carried.
  2. Projectors for 2 Classrooms – Melissa reported that purchasing 2 new projectors would cost $2099 each with shipping for a total of $4198.  These would be paid for out of our REAP grant.  Kari made a motion to approve the purchase of 2 projectors with REAP grant funds.  Sarah seconded the motion.  The vote was unanimous; the motion carried.
  3. Bus Repairs – Marilyn reported that the Thomas bus is at Owen’s right now having the water pump replaced.  The water pump arrived however it was determined that a piece of the old one that was planned to be used with the new one was cracked, so a new part is being ordered.  When it is ready to be picked up, Cynthia will bring the Blue Bird to Owen’s as it had a warning light on it when she attempted to use it.  There are no estimates on the price of these repairs at this time.
  4. Rental Agreement for Bus Rental – MTSBA drew up a contract between Pioneer School and Cynthia Reed to use her bus while the 2 buses owned by the school are in for repairs.  She has provided a certificate of insurance with Pioneer School listed on it as recommended by MTSBA.  She is requesting $50 per trip whether it is a regular route or field trip.  Cynthia will pay for the fuel for her bus.  Kari made a motion to enter into a contract with Cynthia Reed for the rental of her bus while the buses owned by the school are in for repairs. Cynthia will receive $50 per trip, whether it is a regular route or field trip and she will pay for fuel.  Sarah seconded the motion.  The vote was unanimous; the motion carried.
  5. Boiler Repairs – Kevin found the boiler to have a problem.  The motor is running continuously.  The part to repair this has been ordered.  It will cost $1040 plus shipping.  When it arrives, he will put it in but may need the help of Montana Boiler Repair.  Sarah made a motion to purchase the part to fix the boiler.  Kari seconded the motion.  The vote was unanimous; the motion carried.
  6. Response to Complaints regarding contract breaches – Letters were received from the Board of Public Education of Montana regarding a letter sent to them requesting a letter be placed in the files of two teachers that did not fulfill their signed contracts.  The letter acknowledges the complaint and further states that should the school wish to pursue disciplinary action they should contact Kyle Moen, legal counsel for OPI.  Kari made a motion to table this as Bill contacts Mr. Moen at OPI.  Sarah seconded the motion.  The vote was unanimous; the motion carried.
  7. DOJ Audit – Marilyn explained that Pioneer School was being audited on the procedures used in sending and receiving background checks.  She completed the audit and received required steps to come into compliance in the handling of background checks.  Marilyn has worked closely with Janet Bryant at the Department of Justice to complete these steps.  One step is to adopt handing procedures and Policy 5122.  MTSBA has help to rewrite policy to include suggested handling procedures.  A user agreement is also required.  Kari made a motion to adopt the newly written version of Policy 5122.  Sarah seconded the motion.  Marilyn will continue to complete the steps necessary to make Pioneer School in compliance on all aspects of the background check handling, receiving and storage.





The clerk presented claims warrants numbered 20911 through 20930 in the amount of $5,303.01, and the payroll warrants numbered 8962 through 8963 in the amount of $37,734.35.  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 ch fund.  After review of the report, Kari Jones moved to approve the financial reports. Sarah O’Brien seconded the motion.  The vote was unanimous; the motion carried.




  1. Weekly agendas for the weeks of September 11 through October 9, 2017
  2. October calendar
  3. Kenco Security update report
  4. Employee Rosters
  5. Teacher Schedules
  6. Montana Dept of Transportation Newsletter





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, November 13, 2017 at 6:00 p.m. in Room 105 of the main building.




Attest: __________________________     SIGNED: ____________________________

Bill Bullard, Board Chairperson

DATE: _________________________