School Board Work Session
Beaverton School District 48
Sunset High School
August 6, 2018
Board Members Present:
Becky Tymchuk, Chair
Eric Simpson, Vice Chair
- Don Grotting, Superintendent
- Ginny Hansmann, Deputy Superintendent of Teaching and Learning
- Carl Mead, Deputy Superintendent of Operations
- Gayellyn Jacobson, Chief Financial Officer
- Steve Langford, Chief Information Officer
- Sue Robertson, Chief Human Resource Officer
- Maureen Wheeler, Public Communication Officer
- Jon Franco, Executive Administrator for High School and Options Programs
- Patrick Meigs, Executive Administrator for Elementary Schools
- Paul Odenthal, Executive Administrator for Facilities
- Kathleen Skidmore, Executive Administrator for Elementary Schools
- Ken Struckmeier, Executive Administrator for Middle Schools
- Nicole Will, Executive Administrator for Elementary Schools
- David Williams, Executive Administrator for Strategic Relations/Initiatives
- Camellia Osterink, District Legal Counsel
- Danelle Hudson, Administrator for Student Services
- Jon Bridges, Administrator for Accountability
- Jared Cordon, Administrator for Early Learning, Curriculum, Instruction, and Assessment - Elementary
- Sho Shigeoka, Administrator for Equity and Inclusion
- Brian Sica, Administrator for Curriculum, Instruction and Assessment - Secondary
- Sheri Stanley, Administrator for Facilities Development
- John Huelskamp, Principal of Sunset High School
The Board and present staff convened for networking at 7:30 a.m.
II. WELCOME AND INTRODUCTIONS – Board Chair Becky Tymchuk
School Board Chair Becky Tymchuk called the Work Session to order at 8:00 a.m.
Supt. Grotting introduced Ginny Hansmann as new Deputy Superintendent of Teaching and Learning. Ginny introduced the Teaching and Learning Executive Administrator Team. The retreat for Teaching and Learning is on August 9, 2018. Deputy Superintendent Carl Mead introduced the District’s new Chief Financial Office, Gayellyn Jacobson.
III. COMMUNICATION STYLES - Ginny Hansmann
The Board and present District staff participated in an exercise on Communication Styles
IV. SHORT AND LONG-TERM PLANNING - Carl Mead and Ginny Hansmann
Carl Mead presented the 2018 School Board Calendar to the Board.
- Administrator agreements and certified contracts will be up for negotiations.
- Science and Physical Education curriculum will be under review. A cadre for Fine Arts, Social Science, and World Language will commence during the first and second quarter of 2019. In the next few years, the curriculum adoption will level out. Staff development, Sate regulations, and resources will be assessed throughout the curriculum review process.
- The ongoing 2014 Bond projects include the Timberland Site, William Walker, Rachel Carson, and ACMA. Major Bond Projects include Hazeldale Elementary, William Walker, Five Oaks, the Maintenance Yard, and Raleigh Hills, along with South Cooper Mountain Elementary Land Purchase Closings.
- After policy JC is updated, the Board and Supt. Grotting will look at the middle school boundary adjustments. There will be a community process to inform the public on the new boundaries and the reasoning behind the District’s decision.
- There will be a new William Walker evaluation and possible build-out around Sato and Mountainside.
- Affordable housing has affected the boundary adjustments and the District will be looking at enrollment numbers at the September board meeting. Portland State will be collaborating with BSD to compare boundary adjustments.
- Long range planning includes THPRD IGA approval and the 2022 Capital Bond.
- Career Technical Education and Early Childhood will continue to be evaluated through best practices, professional development, and outside resources.
- State requirement under Division 22 is how the District evaluates what curriculum is adopted.
The Board appreciated the details provided in the 2018-2019 calendar and how it aligns with District priorities. They thanked Carl Mead and Ginny Hansmann for the calendar.
VI. Athletic Facility Standards, Sponsorships, and Future Needs - Paul Odenthal and Sheri Stanley
Paul Odenthal and the Board reviewed the Educational Specification for Comprehensive High School External Athletic Facilities and Fields.
- Re-roofing at Hazeldale Elementary is on schedule.
- Supt. Grotting thanked Facilities for staying on schedule.
- Upgraded facilities will be addressed on a need basis.
- The athletic facilities constructed at Mountainside High School were used as the basis for the report with one exception: The artificial turf fields, beyond the stadium, were built solely due to a condition placed on the District by the City of Beaverton. The turf has a lifespan of ten years. In the future, artificial turf can be added to pre-existing schools based on what is allotted through the Bond.
- Title IX was considered in the External Athletics and Field Area Program.
- In the future, outdoor restrooms will be built during the new construction of schools. The document presented would not require the upgrade of pre-existing buildings. During the next Bond, there can be prioritization of upgrading outdoor restrooms in older high schools.
- The Bond committee decides what direction BSD goes with facility upgrades. BSD is responsible for any property donated/sponsored. Outside entities will continue to be charged for this property.
- Beaverton High School’s gym is on track to open at the start of school.
The Board discussed the impact that the new standards would have on pre-existing facilities. Safety is one of the highest priorities for Facilities.
The Board recommended a checklist to compare external athletics and field area’s in different schools. Facilities will look at the deficiencies at each school and prepare that for the 2020 Bond committee.
Paul Odenthal and the Board discussed the impact that corporate/private fundraising has on schools and ways to convey a school’s needs to the community.
The Board decided that a baseline for equity of facilities at each school would be helpful when deciding what Bond/sponsorship funding goes towards. The Board asked for the total amount of private funding. It was explained to the Board that the total amount is unknown until the project starts and the money is allotted to BSD.
The Board commented on the wonderful work that Facilities has done.
VII. Sunset High School Report and Building Tour - John Huelskamp
Principal Huelskamp noted the importance of school tours and inviting the community into BSD’s facilities.
Sunset High School selected a group of students to film A Day in the Life at Sunset. Videographers from Nike assisted the students. Principal Huelskamp remarked that the connection to Nike and other community partners is instrumental to Sunset’s future.
One of the challenges brought forth to the community was the need to engage students with their passions, grow a sense of purpose, teach critical skills needed for a career, and inspire students to do their very best to make the world better. Sunset’s goals are to meet this exception in partnerships with the community and place less focus on test scores. By doing so, test scores will naturally improve.
Early Release at Sunset has allowed Innovation Teams to identify how to grow curiosity in students. The teams went through a year’s journey to identify these factors. The key was to allow more autonomy for teachers without judging the outcome.
One challenge at Sunset is that the Hispanic/Latino four-year graduation rate has plateaued. They acknowledged that the work would get harder as teachers brought this group up from the 52% graduation rate that it was seven years ago. Principal Huelskamp hopes that Sunset will reach a 90% graduation rate for all students, regardless of demographic, including students with disabilities.
Tardiness and absences at Sunset have gone down. Rigor was replaced with growing curiosity. Sunset has furthered their partnerships with Nike, Columbia, ccTDI, Intel, Toso Quartz, and ESI. Principal Huelskamp looks to infuse more of the 21st-century industry skills at Sunset.
There is a small cluster of students that account for hours missed at school. Sunset is working to address this. At least 70 percent of suspension is drug-related. Anxiety and depression have attributed to days missed in school. Principal Huelskamp believes social media has contributed to anxiety in students.
Credit recovery classes and summer school has helped tremendously with graduation rates at Sunset. There’s a strong relation between on-track to graduation with 9th graders and their success rate as seniors. Because of this, grad mentors support 9th graders and seniors. They advocate for students on a one-to-one basis. The mentors foster positive relationships between students and their teachers and the likelihood of success has gone up. Seniors are approached to help students graduate through alternative options so that the student will not give up.
VIII. Discovery Program at Merlo Station High School - Rachel Sip
Principal Rachel Sip presented the Discovery Implementation Plan at Merlo Station High School to the Board
At Merlo Station, there are five guiding principles that staff adheres to: relationships are their foundation, they value and develop a growth mindset, they use strengths, skills, and resources to overcome challenges, they prepare for future opportunities, and they have clear expectations.
The Discovery program is a social-emotional curriculum for developing leadership skills. It is a model for alternative schools. The program is made up of units including effective groups, anger management, communication skills, assertiveness training, problem-solving, and conflict resolution. Activities include team initiatives, daily circle up, PE, autobiographies, role plays, art projects, and weekly tests. Students can earn PE, Health, Art, Social Studies and Language Arts credits.
In Principal Sip’s pervious district, Tillamook School District, after the Discovery program was implemented, attendance went up from 80%-91%. Discipline incidents went down from 110 to 30, and credits earned doubled while rigor increased. Principal Sip will measure the success of the program through tracking attendance, retention, credits earned, graduation, and a social-emotional assessment and resilience scale.
There are currently 160-180 students at Merlo. Most students that come into Merlo stay at the school for the rest of the year. Currently, there are more juniors and seniors than lowerclassmen. There are 6 groups of 2 teachers with about 25 students per 2 teachers.
Teachers love working at Merlo, and the relationships between teachers and students are strong. By embedding time for reflection, it helps teachers avoid burn out. One of the things Principal Sip looks at is how students social/emotional needs are met. Part of the Discovery program is allowing time for teachers to be supportive and review expectations with students.
The autobiographical aspect of the Discovery program is handled with confidentiality. Students understand who their audience is. Part of the writing process is allowing students to reflect on who they want to be in the future.
Principal Sip explained the credit process at Merlo and how the Discovery program works within the structure of math and science. Through the Discovery process, students are given the tools to cope with their struggles with math and science. Principal Sip will be tracking student’s success and if they continue on to higher education.
Principal Sip has structured information sessions for new students to talk about the Discovery process. Merlo Station is for students who want an alternative setting with more project-based learning. Students feel as if they fit in better at Merlo Station than their neighborhood high schools. Principal Sip feels as though there is some disconnect with community partners and her high school.
The Board discussed if Merlo can be renamed to Merlo Station High School. Principal Sip clarified the difference between Bridges and Merlo. All students have to apply to Merlo.
IX. School Board Evaluation – Board Members
The Board reflected on their previous goals. They plan on reaching out to the community and underrepresented population.
The Board sees themselves as a collective Board. This was evident with evaluations from administrators as well. Supt. Grotting noted that the Board functions well, is respectful, and asks critical questions. The Local Option Levy is another indicator of the public’s confidence in the Board.
Self-evaluation twice a year allows for Board members to accomplish their goals and understand the strengths and weakness of the District. From 2014-2018, the Board has had consistent scores. There were areas of improvement in the categories of leadership and societal impact.
The Board thanked the District for their support and evaluation. They will take the meaningful information and apply it to the 2018-2019 school year.
Supt. Grotting shared his priorities and short-term goals. Through strengthening administrator and principal leadership, Supt. Grotting hopes to improve the educational environment of the Beaverton School District. Dept. Supt. Ginny Hansmann has been focusing on professional development for the Teaching and Learning staff. Supt. Grotting hopes to successfully prepare the change in middle school boundaries for the 2020-2021 school year.
Supt. Grotting is evaluating current hiring practices and developing new practices to build a quality and diverse workforce. He plans on providing a detailed report regarding Title IX compliance in schools. Moving forward, there will be continued expansion of Early Childhood and Career Technical Education programs to improve student achievement.
Supt. Grotting will continue to develop guidelines and complete work around secondary school schedules and grading and reporting. One of his goals is to continue customer service focus and improvement in all sectors. He plans on improving the use of Strategic Plan language to communicate and create a shared vision.
The Board appreciated the Superintendent’s priorities and short-term goals.
XI. Action Item - Consent Agenda- Becky Tymchuk
1. Public Contracts
BE IT RESOLVED that the School Board authorizes the Superintendent or a designee to obligate the District for the public contract items as submitted at this meeting.
2. Approval of Alternate Construction Contracting Procedure for Aloha High School Seismic Upgrades
BE IT RESOLVED that the Beaverton School Board of Directors (i) adopts and approves the findings of Attachment A, (ii) grants a specific exemption from competitive bidding requirements of ORS 279C.335(1), and approves and directs the use of the CM/GC Construction Contract process, for and (iii) requires that the procurement be in accordance with the Attorney General Model Rules adopted under ORS 279A.065(3). LeeAnn Larsen made the motion to adopt the Consent Agenda. Donna Tyner seconded and the motion passed unanimously by a vote of 7 to 0 by Anne Bryan, Becky Tymchuk, Tom Colett, Susan Greenberg, LeeAnn Larsen, Donna Tyner, and Eric Simpson.
XII. Information Items
A. Zero Based Budgeting
Chief Financial Officer, Gayellyn Jacobson presented plans for a zero-based budget. The process of zero-based budgeting starts from a "zero base." Every function within the School District is analyzed for its needs and costs. The budget for next year will be built around what is needed within each department, regardless of whether each budget is higher or lower than the other.
A group of administrators from Central Services and Instruction have been meeting since April 9th, 2018 to create the initial Internal Budget Process for Superintendent/Cabinet review. This group will share out progress and solicit input from members of the team, calibrate impact of decisions made between all groups and the impact of bond projects on general funds.
The Board commented on the importance of transparency and the impact that future budget cuts will have on the District and in the Beaverton community. The Board discussed Division 22 Assurance of Compliance.
B. Grading & Reporting
The Grading and Reporting Advisory Committee met in the spring of 2018 to discuss current grading practices and areas of concern. The Committee developed recommendations and action plans in the following three areas: International Baccalaureate Grading Scale Conversion, Reporting on Missing Assignments, and Frequency of Communication with Families Using the Synergy Gradebook.
Teachers at Mountainside had raised concerns that the 1-8 BSD MYP Conversion Scale set an unreasonably high expectation for students to earn an “A” and an unreasonably low expectation for students to earn a “D” and “F.” Mountainside and ISB were the only schools assessed. Teaching and Learning is satisfied with the other schools.
Teaching and Learning will collaborate with the BSD Department of Information Technology to develop clear guidance on the separate benefits of Synergy and Canvas. This guidance will be distributed to all stakeholders.
Teachers were given clear direction on the frequency of input into the Synergy Gradebook. The directions state that a numerical value must be updated at least every six weeks and numerical or summary (+/=/-) updates must occur every few weeks.
The Board addressed the length of time it has taken for Teaching and Learning to create recommendations and action plans regarding grading and reporting.
The Grading and Reporting Advisory Team recommends a technical change to the Synergy gradebook for 2018-19 that will enhance communication with students, teachers, and parents. The change allows for the mark of N (no evidence) to be the mark in the gradebook for the assignment.
Moving forward, the reports will be clearly defined. The IT department would like to create a clearer understanding on the separate benefits of Synergy and Canvas. This guidance will be distributed to all stakeholders. Supt. Grotting noted that the Early Warning System will be reviewed also.
Synergy is used for a snapshot of how a student is performing. Canvas gets into the detail of why the grade was determined.
The Board thanked Teaching and Learning for their efforts.
C. Board Committees/Special Assignments
Board Chair Becky Tymchuk led the discussion of Board goals and Special Assignments. The Board focused on the following working goals:
- Encouraging purposeful and inclusive community engagement, particularly for underserved communities
- Legislative Platform
- Contract Negotiations
- Policy Updates
Becky Tymchuk adjourned the meeting at 3:45 p.m.
The next scheduled School Board meeting will be a Business Meeting held on Monday, August 27th at 6:30 p.m. at the Beaverton School District Central Administration office.
Becky Tymchuk, School Board Chair