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 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . August 10, 2020
Presented for Approval . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . September 14, 2020
DATE: August 10, 2020
TIME: 4:30 p.m.
PLACE: Pioneer School, Main Building, Room 106
MEMBERS Kari Jones, Chairperson
PRESENT: Luke Rome, Trustee
Marion Hatch, Trustee
CLERK: Marilyn Michael
ADMIN: Melissa Schnitzmeier
STAFF: Alisa Rau, Megan Lee, Jacob Croteau and Shannon Wright arrived at 4:30 pm. Jacob left at 5:05, Shannon left at 6:25, Alisa and Megan left at 6:45,
VISITORS: Glenn Olson, Tim & Wynn Powell and Krystle Henry arrived at 4:30 pm. Wynn & Tim Powell left at 5:25, Glenn Olson left at 6:25 and Krystle Henry left at 6:45.
- CALL TO ORDER:
Trustee, Kari Jones called the meeting of the trustees of Pioneer Elementary School District #41 to order in Room 106 (and via Zoom)of the main building, Monday, August 10, 2020 at 4:30 pm. Trustee, Luke Rome welcomed all those attending. Trustee, Luke Rome read the Montana Law about public meetings.
- MINUTE APPROVAL: Luke Rome made a motion to approve the minutes of the regular meeting of June 8, 2020 and special meeting minutes of July 23, 2020. Marion Hatch seconded the motion. The vote was unanimous; the motion carried.
- HEARING OF THE PUBLIC: None
- ADMINISTRATOR REPORT:
- Campus News
- Estimated Enrollment – K – 8, 1 – 14, 2 – 12, 3 – 9, 4 – 8, 5 – 8, 6 – 7, 7- 2, 8 – 3 for an estimated total of 70.
- Back to School Newsletter & Enrollment Paperwork – Set to Deploy
- First Day of school is 8/19/20
- Teachers Back 8/18/20
- Title 1 Grant in progress
- COVID Updates
- Staff PPE
- Face Shields
- Gowns – in progress, Luke is working on this
- Student PPE
- Cloth Masks
- Lanyards for masks
- UV Disinfecting Boxes x 6
- CDC approved disinfectant
- Staff PPE
- Opt-Out Form – Remote Learners:
- Deadline to submit Opt-Out form, 8/12/20
- Building Updates
- Andy contacting electrician about the last lights, then it should be done
- OLD BUSINESS
- BUILDING MAINTENANCE – Kevin is working on the boiler condensate tank replacement. Melissa will be in contact with him on an estimated time of completion
- SAFETY ENHANCEMENTS – Kevin is planning to add the extra bar to the railing, Melissa will contact him on when this will be completed.
- ADA COMPLIANCE/ARCHITECHT PROPOSAL UPDATES – Melissa will be meeting with Collaborative Designs on Monday, August 17th. After this, they should be coming to the September meeting with their updates.
- CARES Act
- 20-21 Reopening Plan – Melissa presented the Responsive Return to School Planning document. She also explained that a change has been made to when a student or staff member is exhibiting signs of COVID, colds or other flu-like symptoms that they will be sent home a doctor’s note will be required upon return to school. Luke expressed concern for families without insurance with this requirement. Melissa will do some checking to see what options we may have for helping with this. Another question that came up included staff with students being allowed to have their students with them if we move to Plan B or C, the board felt this should be handled on a case by case basis, looking at all of the risks that might be involved. After discussion, Marion made a motion to adopt the Responsive Return to School Planning document. Kari seconded the motion. The vote was unanimous; the motion carried. Melissa also presented questions about whether we can go into the hybrid plan if we do not have enough substitutes, the board felt Melissa could make this determination if necessary without the requiring a board meeting. The length of time closed will depend on the circumstances – anywhere from 48 hours to 1 – 2 weeks if necessary. Masks requirements were also discussed and it was decided that they would be recommended but not required unless ordered by the governor at this time noting that this could change at any time depending on the number of cases in the county, etc. At this time, Marion made a motion to open at full capacity with the option to go into hybrid if necessary, if hybrid goes into effect, the plan will be to close for 48 hours for remote learning. She added that masks would be recommended at this time and Melissa would make the determination of going into hybrid if and when it were to be necessary. Kari seconded the motion. The vote was unanimous; the motion carried.
- Use of Funds – Melissa explained that the money from the Governor must be spent by December 31, 2020. The CARES Act grant money has a longer timeline on when it needs to be spent, so she has some ideas on using these funds including making the earlier proposed part-time aide into a full-time aide. She has also been working with Cerium Networks on camera systems for the classrooms for the families that will be doing digital learning. The bid for this is $4502.34. We will also need to get speakers, more access points to make sure we have our Wi-Fi connections are adequate. She also suggested using funds for purchasing more ChromeBooks and licenses if needed. Luke made a motion to spend up to $7000 for the camera system, speakers and access points. Marion seconded the motion. The vote was unanimous; the motion carried.
- STAFFING UPDATES – Melissa explained that due to classrooms going back to self-contained, she would recommend that Megan Lee be moved to a full time teaching position. Luke made a motion to hire Megan Lee as a full time teacher. Marion seconded the motion. The vote was unanimous; the motion carried. Melissa also recommends that we hire a full time aide instead of a part time aide. We have extra funding to help with this from the money from the CARES Act and the governor’s COVID funding money. Luke made a motion to hire a full time aide in place of the previously decided part-time position using the CARES-Act and Governor’s money. Marion seconded the motion. The vote was unanimous; the motion carried.
III. NEW BUSINESS
- NON-RESIDENT STUDENT APPLICATIONS – Tim & Wynn Powell, Glenn Olson and Krystle Henry were in attendance to request their students be allowed to attend Pioneer School as non-resident students. All of these parents waived the option to have the meeting closed. After discussion, Marion made a motion to accept Deakon Olson to 1st Grade. Luke seconded the motion. The vote was unanimous; the motion carried. Luke made a motion to accept Lauryn, Hudson & Addy Powell to 1st, 3rd & 5th Grade. Marion seconded the motion. The vote was unanimous; the motion carried. Marion made a motion to accept Faith, Grace & Izak Henry to 1st, 4th & 6th Grade. Luke seconded the motion. The vote was unanimous; the motion carried.
- INTERVIEW FOR AIDE POSITION – Kellie Garey was interview for the full-time aide position. After discussion, Luke made a motion to hire Kellie Garey for the full-time aide position. Marion seconded the motion. The vote was unanimous; the motion carried.
- POLICY UPDATES – Melissa presented updates that need to be approved. Luke made a motion that the Board of Trustees of Pioneer School District #41 hereby declare the continuance of an unforeseen emergency in accordance with Section 20-9-801 through 20-9-806, MCA, due to the community and school health concerns related to COVID-19 and authorize the administration to take necessary steps to execute this declaration and inform the public and government agencies of this declaration. This declaration will be extended through June 30, 2021. Marion seconded the motion. The vote was unanimous; the motion carried. Luke made a motion for the Board of Trustees of Pioneer School District #41 to authorize the district administrator to provide off site instruction. Marion seconded the motion. The vote was unanimous; the motion carried. Luke made a motion that the Board of Trustees of Pioneer School District #41 hereby authorize the district superintendent to work with the district staff in making determinations regarding pupils who are proficient in courses in which the pupils are enrolled without regard to the aggregate hours of instruction provided. The superintendent is directed to make a final determination of proficiency for each pupil for each enrolled course, using district assessments, including class grades at a minimum, and reporting full-time equivalent conversion of the ANB for such pupils, based on the scheduled time ordinarily provided through the aggregate hours of instruction for such course. Furthermore, the superintendent is authorized to work with the district staff in providing instruction for pupils of the district. Such instruction may include any method or methods identified as appropriate by the superintendent, including but not limited to offsite instruction as defined and referenced in sections 20-1-101 (14); 20-7-118; and 20-9-311 (11), MCA. Marion seconded the motion. The vote was unanimous; the motion carried.
- 2020-2021 BUS ROUTE UPDATES – There are no changes to the bus routes at this time. Marilyn will present them at the September meeting if necessary.
- ELECTION POLLING PLACE AVAILABILITY FOR PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION –
- RECOMMITTMENT TO EASTERN YELLOWSTONE SPECIAL ED CO-OP – Melissa explained that each year we must sign a recommitment to the Co-op. The Co-op provides speech, school psychologists, and other specialist that we need or could potentially need. Marion made a motion to approve our recommitment to the Eastern Yellowstone Special Education Coop. Kari seconded the motion. The vote was unanimous; the motion carried.
- STAFF HANDBOOK – Melissa presented the Staff Handbook for 20-21. Until an agreement can be reached with the union on evaluations, she recommends removing the last sentence on page 6 of the top paragraph. Luke made a motion to adopt the staff handbook with the last sentence on page 6, top paragraph removed until an agreement is reached with the union. Marion seconded the motion. The vote was unanimous; the motion carried.
- STUDENT HANDBOOK – Melissa presented the Student Handbook. After discussion and review of the handbook, Luke made a motion to adopt the student handbook noting the changes to hours of the school day on page 8, mask requirements on the buses on page 11 and new information regarding recesses, drop offs & pickups and the need for parents to remain in their vehicles to promote social distancing. Kari seconded the motion. The vote was unanimous; the motion carried.
- ADMINISTRATOR CONTRACT/MATERNITY LEAVE – Melissa asked the board if they would be willing to allow her to work part-time during her maternity leave. She would like to take the first 6 weeks off after her baby is born and then return to work part-time and work from home for some things. She contacted MTSBA and was told this is allowed. The board would like to see some kind of a schedule as to what her work hours would be. Melissa will develop a schedule and report back to the board on what this plan will look like. She would also like to put someone in place in a “lead teacher” position to help with discipline in her absence.
- MOA – Melissa is working with Jami Burns and MTSBA on the wording of the MOA. Jami is representing the teacher’s union. At this time, MTSBA is recommending a face to face meeting with the board and union to work out the MOA.
- CANVASS THE VOTE – Marilyn presented the results of the mill levy election. The levy failed with a vote of 122 for and 194 against. Luke made a motion to accept the results of the election. Marion seconded the motion. The vote was unanimous; the motion carried.
- TRUSTEES FINANCIAL SUMMARY REPORT 2019-2020 – Marilyn presented the TFS to the board. This is a report for OPI to recap of the expenditures and revenues for the 2019 -20 school year. After it is approved by the board, it will be submitted to the County Superintendent and OPI. Luke Rome made a motion to approve the 2019-20 Trustee Financial Summary report. Kari Jones seconded the motion. The vote was unanimous; the motion carried.
- FINAL BUDGET REPORT 2020-2021 – Marilyn present the final budget report for 2020-2021. This was completed with Melissa’s inputs. Melissa presented the final preliminary budget to the board also. Marilyn explained that with the need for additional services for students with IEP’s, Tuition to Yellowstone Academy and paying our portion of the Preschool program, we have had to add to our Tuition Fund. Our total mills have gone up from 135.92 to 144.49. Luke made a motion to accept the 2020-2021 Final Budget Report. Kari seconded the motion. The vote was unanimous; the motion carried. After the two reports are submitted to OPI, Marilyn will gather the signatures needed on them and submit them to the County Superintendent of Schools.
- JUNE AND JULY FINANCIAL REPORT
The clerk presented June claims warrants numbered 21544 through 21564 in the amount of $59,614.56, and the payroll warrants numbered 9064 through 9065 in the amount of $18,636.52. The ACH and Direct deposits were included in the amount.
The clerk also presented July claims warrants numbered 21565 through 21574 in the amount of $1,558.22, and the payroll warrants numbered 9066 in the amount of $12,352.33. 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, Luke Rome moved to approve the financial reports. Marion Hatch seconded the motion. The vote was unanimous; the motion carried.
- TRUSTEE CONCERNS
VI . ADJOURNMENT:
A motion was made by Luke Rome to adjourn the meeting. Kari Jones seconded the motion. The vote was unanimous; motion carried. The meeting ended at 6:51 pm. The next scheduled regular meeting is Monday, September 14, 2020 at 4:30 p.m. in Room 102 of the main building.
Attest: __________________________ SIGNED: ____________________________
Kari Jones, Board Chairperson