Unofficial School Board Meeting Minutes

Unofficial Minutes of Regular Meeting - August 28, 2017

The Board of Trustees - Athens Independent School District 

A Regular Meeting of the Board of Trustees of Athens Independent School District was held Monday, August 28, 2017, beginning at 6:00 PM in the District Support Center Board Room, 104 Hawn Street, Athens, Texas. 

I. Call to Order/Certify Notice/Establish Quorum

Mr. Robert Risko, President of the Board of Trustees, announced a quorum of Board Members was present and called the meeting to order at 6:00 p.m.

Members present: Mr. Robert Risko, Mrs. Renda Garner, Mr. Eric Smith, Mr. Bob Spears, Mrs. Jennie Mahmoud, Mrs. Alicea Elliott (arrived at 6:10 p.m.)

Members absent: Mr. Eugene Buford

Also present were: Tony Brooks, Technology Coordinator; Diana Vaughn, Student Services Director; Jami Ivey, Secondary Education Director; Shannon Pursley, CAE Principal; Jennifer Risinger, AMS Principal; Claudia Stiles, SAE Principal; Ginger Morrison, AHS Principal; Renee Campbell, Elementary Education Director; Lisa Howell, BAE Principal; Dr. Janie Sims, Assistant Superintendent; Cathy Kirkland; Brooke Brock, Special Populations Director; Randy Jones, Chief Financial Officer; Barry Choate, Director of Operations; George DeJohn; Charlie Combs; Gail Carnes, Executive Assistant;and Blake Stiles, Superintendent. 

II. Invocation was given by Mr. Eric Smith.

III. Pledge of Allegiance was given to the national and state flags.

IV. 2017 Tax Rate Hearing

Mr. Randy Jones, Chief Financial Officer, conducted the 2017 Tax Rate hearing. This is designated as a public hearing to discuss adoption of the 2017 tax rates. No one signed up to speak. 

V. Information/Discussion Items

A. Administrative Report

Mr. Blake Stiles, Superintendent, asked the Principals to report on the Start of School. All three elementary campus Principals reported that the beginning of school had started smoothly. Also they were very appreciative of the new gym/activity centers. Secondary Principals also reported a smooth start to school. Middle school Principal Risinger said her focus for the year was to impress on students the impact of their digital footprints. High school Principal Morrison emphasized the importance of starting the seniors first before the other students and how it has set the calm atmosphere for the whole campus. Mr. Stiles relayed that this had been a calm start this year even with all the construction going on at all the campuses.

B. Construction Update

George DeJohn with Claycomb Architects showed the Board of Trustees a PowerPoint presentation with a picture slideshow of all the projects at various times during construction. He informed the Board all projects were still on schedule.

C. Preliminary Accountability Ratings

Dr. Janie Sims, Assistant Superintendent, reported to the Board of Trustees that the district earned the rating of Met Standards. She also informed the Board that the four performance indicators would become three next year and there was nothing available for the A-F rating yet. Renee Campbell, Elementary Education Director, reported to the Board that all three elementary campuses Met Standards and one (SAE) received five distinction designations. Jami Ivey, Secondary Education Director, reported that the middle and high schools also Met Standards and the high school received five distinction designations.

D. District Parent Involvement Plan

Dr. Diana Vaughn, Student Services Director, presented the annually revised and updated District Parent Involvement Plan that describes the District’s plans, processes, and activities to increase and enhance parental involvement of their child’s education. However, with the passage of the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), the emphasis shifted from “involvement” to "engagement".

The plan is now called Parent & Family Engagement Plan. 

VI. Action Items

A. Consider Adoption of 2017 Tax Rate

Motion was made by Mrs. Jennie Mahmoud and seconded by Mr. Eric Smith that trustees adopt an ordinance levying a tax rate for the 2017 tax year in the amount of $1.43647 per $100 valuation ($1.03738 for maintenance and operation; $0.39909 for debt service). The Local Maintenance rate and the Interest & Sinking rate is unchanged from 2016. Motion carried 6:0.

B. Consider Expenditures Over $25,000

1. Imagine Learning

Motion was made by Mrs. Alicea Elliott and seconded by Mrs. Jennie Mahmoud that trustees approve the purchase of Imagine Learning online program for PreK-5th grade ELL students in the amount of $52,500.00 as presented. A combination of funding sources will be from Title I, III and Special Education. Motion carried 6:0.

2. Edgenuity Software

Motion was made by Mrs. Alicea Elliott and seconded by Mrs. Renda Garner that trustees approve the purchase of Edgenuity Software for the credit recovery program at the high school, curriculum at DAEP, and options for AP and other courses as presented. This is a three-year commitment for 50 licenses and seven days of professional development in the annual amount of $29,325.00 for each year. Funding sources are Title I and Special Education. Motion carried 6:0

3. Dustless Blaster

Motion was made by Mr. Eric Smith and seconded by Mrs. Jennie Mahmoud that trustees approve the purchase of a dustless blaster for use in the Career and Technology Education facility and by the AISD maintenance department in the amount of $44,200.00 from MMLJ, Inc. as presented. Motion carried 6:0. 

VII. Consent Agenda

A. Minutes of the Regular Meeting Held on July 31, 2017

B. Financial Statements for the Month of July 2017

C. Approve Tax Appraisal Roll

D. Consider Renewal of TASB Unemployment Compensation Program

E. Consider Approval of Appraiser List

F. Consider Approval of Appraisal Calendar

G. Consider Additions, Revisions or Deletions of (LOCAL) Policies Affected by District of

Innovation Status as Recommended by TASB Policy Service

AF(LOCAL): Innovation Districts

BQA(LOCAL): Planning and Decision-Making Process--District-Level

BQB(LOCAL): Planning and Decision-Making Process--Campus-Level

DBA(LOCAL): Employment Requirements and Restrictions--Credentials and Records

DC(LOCAL): Employment Practices

DCA(LOCAL): Employment Practices--Probationary Contracts

DK(LOCAL): Assignments and Schedules

EB(LOCAL): School Year

Motion was made by Mrs. Alicea Elliott and seconded by Mr. Eric Smith that the consent agenda items be approved as presented. Motion carried 6:0.


VIII. Appointment of Delegate and Alternate to TASA/TASB Convention

Mr. Robert Risko will be the delegate and Mr. Eugene Buford the alternate. 

IX. Executive Session Discussion

A. Employment/Resignations of Contract Employees

At 6:58 p.m., the Board President announced that trustees would adjourn to executive session as authorized by the Texas Open Meetings Act, Texas Government Code and/or Education Code concerning any and all purposes permitted by the Act. Should any final action, final decision, or final vote be required, then the final action, final decision, or final vote shall take place in open session. The Board returned to open session at 7:59 p.m. 

X. Open Session - Executive Session Action

A. Employment/Resignations of Contract Employees

Motion was made by Mrs. Alicea Elliott and seconded by Mr. Eric Smith that trustees approve

professional personnel contracts for:

Nicolas Rosenberg

William Carter


XI. Audience Participation

No one signed up to speak prior to the meeting.


XII. Adjourn

Being no further business, the meeting adjourned at 8:00 p.m.




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