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New format for school board meetings

School Talk

July 7, 2012
By Harold Remme - ISD 88 Superintendent , The Journal

When the Board of Education set its meeting calendar for the 2012-13 school year, one result was a change from past meeting patterns. For the 2012-13 school year, the Board of Education will continue to meet on the second and fourth Thursday of the month except in a few situations revolving around state law or holiday time periods.

The change in meeting pattern approved for 2012-13 is that the second Thursday meeting of the month meeting will be a Study Session, not an action meeting. Also, the start time for these meetings will be 5 p.m. rather than the traditional 7 p.m. start time. Study sessions will not be televised.

Why the change in meeting structure? The intent is to create more opportunity for extended meaningful discussion of key topics that may become action items at future meetings. In the past, significant topics for decision have been filtered through the school board committee structure. Various committee reports have been made at regular meetings but this process has not allowed for full school board discussion on significant topics. The design of the new format is to create a more transparent information process to the public and to generate more discussion prior to making decisions which impact the students, staff, parents and the community.

The July 12 Board of Education meeting will be the first meeting using the new Study Session format. At the meeting, three topics will be discussed. These topics are described in the following paragraphs.

Item One: Discussion of the bids that have been received for the purchase of the District Administrative Center. (former Middle School) Reports will be made regarding meetings that have been held with potential bidders. Discussion will also include contingencies proposed from potential bidders and contingencies important to the school district. Board of Education members will also receive a report from legal counsel as to steps that need to be taken to meet all legal requirements and contingencies important to the school district.

Item Two: Discussion will also focus on the possibility of school board authorization to add a levy referendum question to the Nov. 6 election ballot. Information will be discussed as to the financial impact to property owners at various property value levels.

Item Three : High School principals will share details of the implementation plan for a six-period school day in the 2012-13 school year. The Board of Education previously approved moving forward with the planning phase for implementation of a six-period school schedule. Principals will share student registration information, daytime schedules, and additional details of how the implementation plan will help address the academic needs of students.



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