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February 8, 2016 Board of Education Meeting Minutes



February 8, 2016




The regular meeting of the Board of Education of the Parishville-Hopkinton Central School District was called to order at 7:30 P.M. by President W. Remington in the Conference Room on the above date.





Present: J. McGill, B. Remington, W. Remington, H. Simmons, R. White, W. Witherell – 7:35 P.M., J. Young, T. Zellweger, and Mr. Saiff.


Absent: D. Taylor


Others: V. Doll, S. Hartson, J. Learned, B. Reid, and M. Robinson.




Quorum of five established.










B. Reid recognized the Paw Ticket Winner for the Month of January, Grade 2 student Makayla Collins.


V. Doll noted that Mrs. Learned was teaching Physics as an advanced placement class through SUNY Potsdam. Miss Doll added that G. Clark was continuing with the school’s food waste sorting projects. V. Doll stated that D. Cannamela and A. Ellison attended the Crane School of Music with a number of the District’s students, and that those students were selected for 35 seats in various groups. V. Doll also said that Grade 11 student Amanda Mason earned the Karen P. Martin award for all of her efforts with Musicality. This award will carry with it money that will be added to the Musicality funds raised. Miss Doll shared that R. Whalen would be taking the District’s Printmaking students on a brief field trip to the Gibson Gallery at SUNY Potsdam. She mentioned that the exhibit would contain works from this year’s selected participants and prints spanning over thirty years.



No. 2016-122



Motion made by T. Zellweger and seconded by J. Young to approve the Minutes of the January 19, 2016, regular meeting as typed and delivered to Board Members. 7 in favor, 0 opposed, Carried.



No. 2016-123




Motion made by T. Zellweger and seconded by J. Young to approve the Treasurer’s Reports showing an available balance on hand as of January 31, 2016, as follows:

General Fund $18,859.40

Unemployment Reserve $743,182.06

General Fund Capital Reserve $499,987.27

Risk Retention (Property Loss Reserve – CLASS) $45,013.53

School Lunch Fund $12,629.82

School Lunch Savings $62,167.28

Federal Fund $-0-

Capital Fund $-0-

Trust & Agency Fund $-0-

Payroll Fund $-0-

Debt Service $156,339.81

Extra-Class Activities Fund $91,852.42

7 in favor, 0 opposed, Carried.




Mr. Saiff stated that he spoke with C. Bastian from Bernie Donegan’s office. Mr. Saiff indicated that Mr. Bastian provided him with a revised timeline, which was shared with the Board, for the proposed building project reflecting a voter referendum in August 2016. Mr. Saiff said he would be looking to establish a committee of Board members to prioritize the list of work. He then noted that Phil Squadrito would visit the District once all three tiers of work has been drafted. Mr. Squadrito will then refine that work, calculate a cost, and further develop the planning and construction. Board members interested in serving on the committee were T. Zellweger, J. Young, and possibly W. Remington. Mr. Saiff said he would be in contact with these Board members regarding meeting times and dates.




Willard Witherell arrived at the meeting at 7:35 P.M.

























Mr. Saiff discussed the progress that has been made to-date on each of the five goals adopted by the Board of Education this year. Some of the goals are building level specific and some are District specific.


Goal 1: Data Driven Instruction – Continue with the K-6 initiative for developing data driven instructional methods (DDI), build on the math focus in the 2014-2015 school year, and incorporate English Language Arts during the 2015-2016 school year.


B. Reid distributed to Board members a packet and a map. The packet indicated where Elementary teachers and students were with Data Driven Instruction in English Language Arts. Ms. Reid noted a similar packet was rolled out with Mathematics a few years ago, and that she and the Elementary teachers had seen substantial growth with Math scores. B. Reid said she is confident that achievement will carry over into English Language Arts as well. Ms. Reid added that interim assessments have been implemented in K-6 Mathematics and Grades 2-6 English Language Arts. B. Reid said her Kindergarten teachers were on board with incorporating the assessments in ELA, though doing so is not required at this time. Ms. Reid stated interim assessments were given in October, December, and February.


B. Reid added that the K-Grade 2 intervention cycle ends with the last teacher-created interim assessment administered in April. The cycle for Grades 3-6 ends with New York State assessments which are also given in April. Ms. Reid noted that interim assessments are cumulative. She also stated that eDoctrina is software that teachers use to create assessments, as they have been trained in the program. Teachers are also knowledgeable in interpreting printouts from eDoctrina, which create data reports by student, by class, by grade level after the assessments are given. Teachers then convene in Assessment Analysis meetings to discuss the reports. The data is reviewed with Title Service Providers, Erin Casey and Therese Baxter. The Analysis meetings focus on planning for the individual needs of students and the responsive actions for whole class reteach groups. Following the Analysis meetings, another intervention cycle is implemented. During this intervention cycle of six to eight weeks, students stay with teachers during 10th period to receive additional instruction based on the students’ specific needs.


Ms. Reid told the Board teachers were utilizing computer-based interventions with students, but were reinforcing concepts the old fashioned way, too. B. Reid explained that intervention groups may join together to work as a team to meet individual needs of students, which is why the data is being collected and analyzed. Ms. Reid added that letters are sent to parents of students that are identified as needing academic intervention services. The letters explain why the intervention is needed, with whom the child will be staying with during 10th period, and the days of the week in which the child is expected to stay with a teacher. In response to W. Witherell’s question regarding how many students have been identified as needing intervention, B. Reid said the number fluctuates by cycle, and that up to 50 children may be staying for the additional instruction. Ms. Reid said the Elementary teachers have gone above and beyond in this process, and that she is truly pleased with the progress. B. Reid stated she feels the interventions and Assessment Analysis meetings have made a difference. She noted this is the third year with Mathematics interventions, and she has noticed that Elementary students are doing very well on assessments. Ms. Reid also announced that this process has yielded individual growth in students.


Goal 2: Common Core State Standards – Provide necessary resources and materials aligned with the CCSS to teachers and students with the goal of preparing students to be college and career ready. To embed independent learning, close reading, and continue with the academic vocabulary instruction at the Junior and Senior-High School level.


V. Doll said that Regents Week had just concluded, and that because of the rigorous assessments teachers had eased up on Common Core vocabulary terms that week. She noted that teachers were continuing to work with the terms and determining which words students were having a difficult time grasping. Those words went out in a list to teachers. The vocabulary words will be used in close reading practices to increase literacy across content areas. Miss Doll stated that the vocabulary words would be further explored by teachers more during the next Staff Development Day. Teachers will be annotating text passages in the same way throughout the building so that students having different teachers for the next school year will have a common way to complete the close reading strategy.


  • Goal 3: Special Education – Coordinate services for the Committee for Pre-School Special Education students (ages 3-5). This process involves student evaluation, eligibility determination, coordination of special education services, and oversight of IEP requirements for pre-school special education students.


Mr. Saiff reminded the Board that the District will now be undertaking coordination of Pre-School students requiring special education services, which was formerly coordinated by BOCES’ Beginning Years program. He noted that B. Remington will be assisting B. Reid with this in the Elementary office. Ms. Reid stated she has seen the highest number of pre-school students requiring special education services since she has been in the District. B. Reid said that it has been a good year for B. Remington and her to learn the ropes, and that they are getting a lot of practice in CPSE coordination.


  • Goal 4: Capital Improvements – Review the 2015 Building Conditions Survey and use the information therein to plan the next Capital Improvement project, and the District’s long range capital improvement plan. To work with the District’s financial advisors and Business Manager to determine the feasible financial scope of the project, and then to use the BCS to prioritize and plan the work to be completed.


Mr. Saiff noted that the District is on track with this goal, and that he is working with Charles Bastian and Phil Squadrito to establish a timeline for the scope of proposed work.


  • Goal 5: Technology Plan and Smart Schools Bond Act – Complete and have accepted the District’s Technology Plan Survey as required by SED. Once approved, the SMART funds will be applied to a “one to one” computer to student program whereby students will be assigned a computing device, based on a plan developed collaboratively with the District’s Technology Committee. Other initiatives to be funded by the SMART funds include technology support, professional development, hardware purchases, school bus internet access for students, and security upgrades to the school’s camera system.


Mr. Saiff stated the next step in the Technology Plan is to purchase hardware in one or more of several areas. The first purchases will be one-to-one student computing devices. Mr. Saiff noted teachers were in the process of preparing for that. The second purchasing possibility involves creating more Wireless Access Points in the building to support the increased load of computing devices. Mr. Saiff added that the switches are starting to become outdated. He stated that computer technicians from BOCES evaluated the switches as near the end of their functioning lives and that those switches can be replaced under the Smart Schools Bond funding. Mr. Saiff said that a third area of purchase he would like for the District is Wireless Access on the school buses. He explained that the Wireless Access would be limited to areas where there is cellular service. The fourth hardware purchase would allow for the conclusion of the security camera upgrades, which were began in a prior capital project. Mr. Saiff said this particular Board goal was moving along very well. He explained that members of the District’s Technology Committee visited other districts that already have one-to-one student computing and gathered information. Mr. Saiff added that those districts are really tapping into the way students communicate outside of school. He noted that, for the most part, teachers and administrators are asking students to turn everything they use to communicate with off when they come to school. Mr. Saiff is hopeful that the District can incorporate technology into education and reach students at the level they reach each other. He agreed that this significantly changes the traditional ways children learn in school, but that it is an exciting time for educators wishing to utilize new technology in their teaching.




Mr. Saiff reminded the Board of the three options previously discussed for distributing diplomas at High School Graduation - The Board President only would present diplomas; the Board President and Board members who had family members graduating would present diplomas; or the Board President and Board members with family members and/or friends of the family would deliver diplomas. Mr. Saiff said he would like to establish an expectation so that delivery of diplomas is consistent year after year. H. Simmons stated last year’s graduation was an anomaly in that a number of students had requested that she deliver their diplomas and that she had always planned on presenting diplomas to many of these students. Mrs. Simmons noted that situation would probably not occur again. T. Zellweger said he felt that if you have a child, a relative, or a close friend of the family, as a Board member you should be able to present diplomas to those students. J. Young stated he felt presentation of diplomas should be a function of the Board President only. R. White, B. Remington, and W. Witherell felt that Board members with graduating children should be able to present diplomas to their sons and/or daughters. W. Remington also agreed with this notion. Mr. Saiff indicated he would like to have a uniform decision so that new Board members would know what to expect. It was determined that option two – diplomas would be delivered by the Board President and Board members with graduating children or graduating students that were living with a Board member – was preferred by a majority of the Board and will be effective for the 2016-2017 school year.



No. 2016-124




Motion made by T. Zellweger and seconded by J. Young to approve the following schedules for audit and payment:

Capital Fund…………………………..………………………………..…................$-0-

General Fund $380,965.20

Federal Fund $537.49

School Lunch Fund 10,643.91

Trust & Agency $121,188.18

8 in favor, 0 opposed, Carried.



No. 2016-125


Motion made by J. Young and seconded by W. Witherell to authorize the Business Manager to make the necessary budgetary transfers as attached for the Month of January, 2016. 8 in favor, 0 opposed, Carried.



No. 2016-126


Motion made by J. Young and seconded by T. Zellweger to accept the Budget Reports for the Month of January, 2016, covering the period from July 1, 2015 through January 31, 2016. 8 in favor, 0 opposed, Carried.



No. 2016-127


Based upon the recommendation of the Real Property Tax Office, Motion made by J. Young and seconded by T. Zellweger to approve two tax roll errors. Both errors involved a property owned by Alan and Juanita Ruckh with a clerical failure to key in Basic STAR into the tax roll. With this exemption applied, A. and J. Ruckh will receive a refund of $377.00, as per the revised 2014 tax bill. With the Basic STAR exemption applied to the 2015 tax bill, the owners will receive a refund of $385.00.

Mr. Robinson noted the District will modify its reports to the state and get those refunds to the owners. 8 in favor, 0 opposed, Carried.




V. Doll presented the graduation rate to Board members. This rate is the percentage of students that graduate within four years after entering Grade 9. This percentage takes into account whether a student earns a Regents diploma or a Local diploma. CDOS, Skills and Achievement, and students obtaining GEDs do not count toward this figure. Miss Doll noted that Parishville-Hopkinton Central School continually exceeds the St. Lawrence-Lewis BOCES and New York State averages. She noted that the District fared 2nd overall of the component districts. V. Doll also stated that the District’s APM – Advanced Regents Designation – increased by about 5% this year. Students with this designation achieve a 75% English Language Arts Regents score and an 80% Mathematics Regents score, or have passed eight or more Regents exams.



No. 2016-128


Based on the recommendation of the Superintendent, Motion made by T. Zellweger and seconded by J. Young to approve the 2015-2016 school calendar adjustment proposal thus establishing the following dates and events: The Early Release date for Curriculum Development scheduled for Friday, April 22nd with a 1:10 P.M. dismissal will now be Thursday, April 28th with an 11:40 A.M. dismissal and Elementary Conferences scheduled for April 28th will now be held Wednesday, April 27th. Mr. Saiff said the Google Summit conference held in April will educate teachers on one-to-one student computing strategies. By adjusting the calendar, teachers would be able to attend the Google Summit for the partial day on Thursday and participate in the Summit all day on Friday, April 29th, which is a Regional Staff Development Day. Mr. Saiff added that Mr. Kardash of Colton-Pierrepont Central School said the Google Summit was the best training he has sent his teachers to prepare for one-to-one student computing. Mr. Saiff said he felt this would be a great opportunity to prepare Parishville-Hopkinton teachers for the one-to-one computing rollout. 8 in favor, 0 opposed, Carried.



No. 2016-129



Motion made by T. Zellweger and seconded by J. Young to lock in fuel prices for the 2016-2017 school year for LP gas/propane, fuel oil, and ultra-low sulfur diesel. Gasoline is purchased as needed from the Parishville Kunoco. Mr. Saiff said that choosing the lock-in method gives the District an advantage of knowing what to budget for fuel, and it is somewhat easier to create a budget overall knowing those figures. Mr. Saiff mentioned the District would have benefited from the fluctuating prices this particular year, as fuel prices have come down significantly in the past few months. Mr. Saiff noted he expected to receive the fuel bids toward the end of February, and that the distributors would need a response well before the next Board meeting. After discussion, the Board agreed that choosing the fixed fuel rate seemed the most sensible option at this time. 8 in favor, 0 opposed, Carried.





No. 2016-130



Based upon the recommendation of the Superintendent, Motion made by J. Young and seconded by T. Zellweger to approve Fredrick Hauck from Jefferson-Lewis BOCES to complete the annual fire inspection and corresponding reports for the main building and bus garage for a fee of $550. 8 in favor, 0 opposed, Carried.



No. 2016-131


Based on the recommendation of the Superintendent, Motion made by J. Young and seconded by W. Witherell to approve the policy and regulation concerning Teacher Probation and Tenure, as presented. Mr. Saiff noted this was an updated policy in response to new legislation and language indicating the teacher tenure period has been extended from three years to four years. This is the first reading required for this policy. 8 in favor, 0 opposed, Carried.



No. 2016-132


Based on the recommendation of the Superintendent, Motion made by T. Zellweger and seconded by W. Witherell to appoint Tara TenEyck as Long-Term Substitute for Elizabeth Belt’s Grade 1 Classroom during her Maternity Leave commencing February 22, 2016 and continuing through the remainder of the school year. 8 in favor, 0 opposed, Carried. (T. TenEyck will be paid at Step 1 of the current salary schedule on a per-diem basis. Certification Areas: Early Childhood Education and Childhood Education.)



No. 2016-133


The proposed additional substitutes list for a cafeteria monitor/food service helper/cleaner/secretary and a K-12 Teacher was reviewed by the Board. Motion made by J. Young and seconded by W. Witherell to approve the additional 2015-2016 substitute list as attached. 8 in favor, 0 opposed, Carried.





This item was Tabled for Executive Session.





This item was Tabled for Executive Session.



No. 2016-134



Based on the recommendation of the Superintendent, Motion made by T. Zellweger and seconded by H. Simmons to appoint Jennifer Pierce as Volunteer Assistant Girls’ Varsity Softball Coach for the 2016 season, pending proper certification requirements. 8 in favor, 0 opposed, Carried.



No. 2016-135


V. Doll stated that she had spoken with two female students who expressed interested in playing Girls’ Lacrosse this year. Based on the recommendation of the Superintendent, Motion made by W. Witherell and seconded by H. Simmons to approve a sports merger in Girls’ Lacrosse with Potsdam Central School District at a fee of $100.00 per student athlete for the 2016 season. 8 in favor, 0 opposed, Carried.



No. 2016-136



Mr. Saiff stated that local musician and Clarkson professor Steven Farina has again donated various pieces of musical equipment for use in the Music Department. In November, 2015, Mr. Farina donated a Pearl Mini Timbale, Zildjian Vintage 18" Crash, Pearl Drum Throne, two Snare Stands, two Cymbal Stands (one Heavy Duty, one Light), a Mic Stand with Gooseneck, a Mic Stand for Bass Drum, a Shure PG52 Microphone, a Shure PG57 Microphone, three Microphone Cables, two Cowbells, assorted Percussive Shakers, ten Pair Of Drum Sticks/Mallets, and five Drum Hardware Connectors. Motion made by T. Zellweger and seconded by J. Young to accept these generous donations. 8 in favor, 0 opposed, Carried, with great gratitude.



No. 2016-137


Based upon the recommendation of the Superintendent, Motion made by H. Simmons and seconded by T. Zellweger to approve the recommendations of the CSE for three students as attached. 8 in favor, 0 opposed, Carried.




V. Doll stated that she learned how to contend with these exams when there was a two-hour delay. Teachers and students arrived at the school at approximately 9:50 A.M., and test-taking students had to be seated by 10:00 A.M. Miss Doll said the teachers were very helpful in coordinating testing procedures and that the students were very well behaved. V. Doll said some students who had previously failed a Regents test were taking exams back-to-back, as that is how they had been scheduled by the state. Miss Doll reviewed results of the Regents exams in Common Core English Language Arts – 7% of test-takers were below proficiency, 37% were proficient, and 43% were at mastery level. In Global Studies, 5% of students were below proficiency, 44% were proficient, and 51% were at mastery level. In U. S. History, 0% of students were below proficiency, 36% were proficient, and 64% were at mastery. V. Doll said U. S. History Regents scores have always been a high point for the District. She said Krista Hurley worked very diligently with Global Studies students. Miss Doll noted that all students that had retaken the exam had not taken the Global Studies course in Summer School. This resulted in little Global Studies exposure for these students in the months leading up to the Global Studies Regents.






V. Doll stated playoff games would be held tomorrow. She said Girls’ Basketball would be at Harrisville Central School at 6:00 P.M. and Boys’ Basketball would be Wednesday evening at 6:00 P.M. at Edwards-Knox Central School. She noted these should be very competitive games. Miss Doll also went on to say she has encountered a lot of concern from parents regarding their child’s attendance, due to which absences are excused and which are unexcused. V. Doll said she will highlight this difference in student absence letters. V Doll will also define seat time – the state’s required time to sit in a particular class, often having nothing to do with medical absences.




B. Reid noted only fourteen days have passed since the last Board meeting, and that things were running smoothly. She stated 2nd quarter report cards were sent home. She said teachers and students are gearing up for state assessments. Ms. Reid said she attended New York State Test Coordinators’ meetings, and also participated in computer-based testing training. She said Parishville-Hopkinton will be field testing computer-based exams this year, which is very exciting. B. Reid said Elementary will have one grade level selected to complete the field testing, but that she is not sure which grade level that will be yet. Ms. Reid added that Scott Lalonde attended the training with her so that he could also understand what that type of testing will look like once it is rolled out. S. Lalonde will prepare all grade levels by providing exposure to computer-based testing. B. Reid said students in Grades 3-8 will take exams as they have in the past. She also proclaimed positive changes to New York State assessments for this year. Foremost, beginning this past fall there has been a greater involvement of educators in developing exams and in the scoring process. Ms. Reid is confident a greater impact of that will be seen in years to come. Secondly, there will be a decrease in the number of test questions per grade level, which undoubtedly relieves some stress for students taking the exams. Third, New York State assessments will now be untimed. B. Reid mentioned that in the past, students with disabilities could be granted time and a half or double time to complete the exams. Now, all students will be given as much time as they need. Ms. Reid said that many capable students would get frustrated when teachers said “Time is up”. She feels this change will be very good for the District’s students. B. Reid said she is excited to see the difference these changes will yield. .


Ms. Reid went on to explain that S. Lalonde attended the Elementary Principals’ meeting with herself last week. Although the District is not yet established for one-to-one student computing, Mr. Lalonde presented to other principals what he has been teaching students in Pre-K through Grade 6. B. Reid said the other principals were very impressed, and that administrators at Colton-Pierrepont Central School felt the students at Parishville-Hopkinton Central School were getting more exposure to specific applications. Ms. Reid said she is enthusiastic for the rollout of one-to-one student computing and is pleased that S. Lalonde has prepared the District’s Elementary students.


B. Reid added that she, B. Gallagher, and Elementary teachers work very hard on Panther Press. She stated she hopes Board members use the publication as an indication to what goes on in the school at the Elementary level. Ms. Reid shared that Reading Week will be held the first week of March, and that students have been challenged to read for 70,000 minutes by March 4th. B. Reid proudly announced students are halfway there already. The Assembly for Dr. Seuss’ Birthday will be held on March 4th, and Mary Taylor has planned a number of pet-themed presentations. Ms. Reid said that Elementary students have been leading a fundraiser for the Potsdam Humane Society. B. Reid said the pet theme truly inspires students to read, because they all love their pets.


W. Remington thanked the principals for their updates.




Mr. Saiff reminded the Board that the seat of Vice-President/Board Member T. Zellweger is due to expire June 30, 2016. Mr. Saiff thanked T. Zellweger for his service, and added that he hopes Mr. Zellweger will consider running for another term.




Mr. Saiff informed the Board that the BOCES Annual Meeting would be held April 7, 2016. He stated that at this meeting Mr. Burns presents the BOCES Administrative Budget. Mr. Saiff noted the District’s Board of Education would vote on the budget at the regular meeting on April 18, 2016. Mr. Saiff asked that Board members let him or Miss Hartson know if they would like to attend the meeting on April 7th.



FEBRUARY 29, 2016


Mr. Saiff noted the first special budget meeting would be held on February 29, 2016, the last Monday in February. He stated that on that day he would discuss budgetary numbers for the 2016-2017 school year according to numbers for the 2015-2016 school year, unless the state aid numbers in the executive budget run are released by the New York State Governor. Mr. Saiff added that the tax cap calculation will start at .12%. He also noted that significant increases in Special Education would again impact the entire budget.




The Board received the February issue of Panther Press and a list of upcoming events of interest.



No. 2016-138


Motion made by T .Zellweger and seconded by J. Young to go into Executive Session at 8:41 P.M. to discuss Teacher Contract Negotiations, personnel matters, and tabled items. 8 in favor, 0 opposed, Carried.




J. Learned left the meeting at 8:42 P.M.




M. Robinson left the meeting at 9:10 P.M.




At 9:50 P.M. the Board President announced that the meeting would reconvene.



No. 2016-139



Based on the recommendation of the Superintendent, Motion made by J. Young and seconded by R. White to accept Michael Walter’s letter of resignation as Boys’ Varsity Basketball Coach effective January 22, 2016. 8 in favor, 0 opposed, Carried.



No. 2016-140



Based on the recommendation of the Superintendent, Motion made by T. Zellweger and seconded by J. Young to appoint Justin Storie Boys’ Varsity Basketball Coach effective January 23, 2016. 8 in favor, 0 opposed, Carried.



No. 2016-141


Motion made by J. Young and seconded by T. Zellweger to adjourn at 9:52 P.M. 8 in favor, 0 opposed, Carried.








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