December 2020 School Board Meeting Minutes

Link to audio of December 17, 2020 Board of Education Meeting:                                   

https://cchs165-my.sharepoint.com/personal/steve_murphy_cchs165_com/_layouts/15/onedrive.aspx?id=%2Fpersonal%2Fsteve%5Fmurphy%5Fcchs165%5Fcom%2FDocuments%2FAttachments%2FDec%2017%20CCHS%20School%20Board%20Audio%2Em4a&parent=%2Fpersonal%2Fsteve%5Fmurphy%5Fcchs165%5Fcom%2FDocuments%2FAttachments&originalPath=aHR0cHM6Ly9jY2hzMTY1LW15LnNoYXJlcG9pbnQuY29tLzp1Oi9wL3N0ZXZlX211cnBoeS9FV1FqelJrWTQyOUppWlo5Mzd0RVM0VUJaSlBVOWVWTDA5Q0RQcWppV0M4S0R3P3J0aW1lPUt3dlVMZGF3MkVn

 

MINUTES OF THE REGULAR SCHEDULED MEETING OF THE BOARD OF EDUCATION CARBONDALE COMMUNITY HIGH SCHOOL DISTRICT 165, CARBONDALE, ILLINOIS HELD DECEMBER 17, 2020

The regular scheduled meeting of the Board of Education of School District 165 was held in the Carbondale Community High School Cafeteria, 1301 East Walnut Street, Carbondale, Illinois, on Thursday, December 17, 2020, at 6:00 p.m.

Upon roll call, the following members were present:

Linda Flowers                         Francis Tsung

Lana Galan (Remote)             Julie VanWinkl
Joe Hudgins                            Brian Woodard

Christopher Swims (Remote)

Also present were:

Stephen Murphy                     Ryan Thomas
Donna Fager                           Wendall Pohlman (Remote)

Approval of Minutes: Motion by Flowers, seconded by Hudgins, to approve the minutes of the regular scheduled meeting and executive session of November 12, 2020 and the special meeting of November 16, 2020. Roll call: Flowers, Galan, Hudgins, Swims, Tsung, VanWinkle and Woodard voted yes.  Nay, none.  Motion carried.

Old Business—None

Public Comments: Mr. Murphy read in full the emailed public comments that were received from Cheryl Jones (Attachment 1) and Carmen Jones (Attachment 2):

From: Cheryl Jones cheryljonesfour@gmail.com 
Date: December 17, 2020 at 4:28:01 PM CST

To: Steve Murphy Steve.Murphy@cchs165.com
Subject: Return to school

I have emailed you before but I feel I have to again.  My son is a senior at Carbondale. Timothy Jones is his name. This is a guy who never did like school and always was wishing for snow days but now wants to go back so desperately. He does not do very well With online learning. In fact he is failing or making Ds in several classes. The online learning is a terrible challenge for him that he cannot seem to master and continues to lose self-confidence in his learning ability.

Why are so many other schools in person learning? Dr. Fauci has stated that it is better for children to be in school. Why are we not doing this? I am so frustrated along with my son.

I have had Covid myself, Nov 5th. I am 52, overweight, (obese) and out of shape. To be honest the flu was worse in prior years. My fiancé who lives with me tested positive but never had one symptom. While I think Covid is real and can be serious for some people, I think it is more of a fear tactic for people who are taking advantage of the situation.  

I am begging you and anyone who is listening or reading this to please give our children a chance to have in school learning. There are many things at stake here. Mental well-being is a priority for our kids. Quality education is also.

Please get them back in school. He was so relieved for the short time that he was there, But now back to anxiety and technology frustration.

Please read to Board members.

Cheryl Jones
618-521-8841

From: Carmen Jones carmenj71@yahoo.com
Date: December 17, 2020 at 4:54:26 PM CST
To: Steve Murphy Steve.Murphy@cchs165.com

Good afternoon. I understand there is a board meeting tonight to discuss options for the new semester. I hope and pray that you all have decided to let us go back to school. It is time for change. Let them try. I for one have given up all hope with CCHS but was asked to send an email. How will we ever know the outcome if we don’t try. I certainly am not referring to in the classroom on a chrome book. I mean true in person learning just like Carterville, Marion and Herrin. How can you and Jackson county health department justify what CCHS is currently doing when Williamson county has more cases than we do and yet they still go to school. My daughter who is a senior has had the worst semester ever since she started high school. I will and here, as I think I have made my point clear. Thank you.

FOIA Requests: The Board received a listing of the 2020-21 FOIA Requests received to date for        their review.

Payment of Bills: Motion by Swims, seconded by Hudgins, to pay the remaining bills for the month of November 2020; and, those available for payment for the month of December 2020.  Roll call:  Galan, Hudgins, Swims, Tsung, VanWinkle, Woodard and Flowers voted yes. Nay, none.  Motion carried.

Superintendent’s Report: Mr. Murphy reported on the following:

Springfield Lame Duck Session

The “Lame Duck” session of the Illinois legislature will run from January 4-12. There could be considerable action during the session which could impact schools. The State faces almost a $4 billion deficit in the current fiscal year, half of which is due to COVID.  Governor Pritzker announced $700 million in budget cuts this week, little of which impacted schools. We will see if any action occurs in the lame duck session that impacts the education budget. Legislators may also consider legislation which could impact curriculum and school resource officers.

Second Semester Remote Start

Mr. Murphy recommended that CCHS start second semester in Remote Learning under the same conditions as first semester.  Members Tsung, Hudgins and Woodard said they did not agree with the recommendation.  They said other schools in Jackson County were doing in-person learning and not having issues. They said too many kids are failing academically and the longer we wait the more will fail. Members Flowers and VanWinkle said as mothers and teachers, they could see all sides of the difficult issue. They agreed the kids need to be back in school, but at the same time there are health concerns. Following discussion by the Board, their consensus was that some assemblance of in-person learning must begin second semester.  Mr. Murphy said he would meet with the faculty regarding this plan the next day. He said a Special Board Meeting may be needed over Winter Break regarding the issue.

Failing Grades

Mr. Murphy and Mr. Thomas advised the Board the administration and departments were discussing giving students the option to change their F grades to NG (No Grade) or give them the option of a Pass Grade instead of the failing grade.

Principal’s Report:  Mr. Thomas reported on the accomplishments and recent community service projects and activities being done by the CCHS clubs and organizations.

Bids and Quotes—None

2020 Tax Levy: Motion by Tsung, seconded by Flowers, to approve the following:

1. Adopt the Resolution of CCHS District 165 Levy for Special Education Purposes. 

2. Adopt the 2020 Tax Levy Resolution, including the 2020 Certificate of Tax Levy, with permission to file the levy in Jackson and Williamson Counties.

3. Adopt the Certificate Regarding In applicability of the Truth-In-Taxation Law.

4. Adopt the “PTELL” Resolution, including Exhibit A, Request To Clerk Regarding Reduction of 2020 Tax Extension Pursuant to PTELL, with permission to file with the county clerks of Jackson and Williamson Counties.

Roll call:  Hudgins, Swims, Tsung, VanWinkle, Woodard, Flowers and Galan voted yes. Nay, none. Motion carried.

Semi-Annual Review of Executive Session Minutes: Motion by VanWinkle, seconded by Tsung, to approve the semi-annual review of the closed executive session minutes and to not make public the executive session minutes at this time; and, to destroy the following verbatim record (audiotape) executive session minutes that are 18 months old or older: September 20, 2018; February 21, 2019; March 21, 2019 and April 25, 2019.  Roll call: Swims, Tsung, VanWinkle, Woodard, Flowers, Galan and Hudgins voted yes. Nay, none. Motion carried.

IASB Superintendent Announcement of Vacancy: The Board received a copy of the IASB Superintendent Announcement of Vacancy in their packet for their review

IASB PRESS Issue 106 Bd. Policy Manual Updates—First Reading: The Board received IASB PRESS Issue 106 Board Policy Manual Updates for first reading.  Final adoption of the IASB PRESS Issue 106 Board Policy Updates will occur at the January 21, 2021 Board of Education meeting. Mr. Murphy reviewed the summary of the updates for the Board.

Resignations/Retirements—None

Employment of 2020-21 Personnel: Motion by Swims, seconded by hudgins, to employ the following 2020-21 personnel as presented:

a. Extra-Duty Personnel: Art Club Sponsor: Jennifer Kennedy $368.00

b. Rebound Grant Personnel: Trebor Mann: Math/ADA/Transition Facilitator; 37.5 Hours/Week @ $16.00/Hour; Employment contingent upon adequate grant funding and timely receipt of those funds.  The hours will be reduced during the summer or until adequate student enrollment is achieved; Employment Period: December 1, 2020-July 31, 2021.

Roll call: Tsung, VanWinkle, Woodard, Flowers, Galan, Hudgins and Swims voted yes.  Nay, none.  Motion carried.

Approval of 2020-21 Volunteers—None

For Your Information Items:

District offices will be closed Monday, December 21, 2020 through Friday, January 1, 2021, for Winter Break.

The next Board of Education meeting will be Thursday, January 21, 2021, at 6:00 p.m.

Executive Session: Motion by Tsung, seconded by Flowers, to go into executive session to discuss information regarding the appointment, employment, compensation, discipline, performance or dismissal of specific employees and collective negotiating matters (5 ILCS 20/2(c)(1)(2)); and, to adjourn the Board of Education Meeting immediately following the executive session.  Roll call: VanWinkle, Woodard, Flowers, Galan, Hudgins, Swims and Tsung voted yes. Nay, none. Motion carried.

Mr. Murphy announced there would be no action following the executive session and that the public portion of the meeting would adjourn immediately following it.

The public portion of the meeting recessed at 7:22 p.m. The executive session convened at 7:36 p.m. The executive session adjourned at 9:13 p.m.

Adjournment: The meeting adjourned at 9:14 p.m.

MINUTES APPROVED: JANUARY 21, 2021

 

Attachment 1

From: Cheryl Jones <cheryljonesfour@gmail.com>
Date: December 17, 2020 at 4:28:01 PM CST
To: Steve Murphy <Steve.Murphy@cchs165.com>
Subject: Return to school

I have emailed you before but I feel I have to again.  My son is a senior at Carbondale. Timothy Jones is his name. This is a guy who never did like school and always was wishing for snow days but now wants to go back so desperately. He does not do very well With online learning. In fact he is failing or making Ds in several classes. The online learning is a terrible challenge for him that he cannot seem to master and continues to lose self-confidence in his learning ability.
   Why are so many other schools in person learning? Dr. Fauci has stated that it is better for children to be in school. Why are we not doing this? I am so frustrated along with my son.
   I have had Covid myself, Nov 5th. I am 52, overweight, (obese) and out of shape. To be honest the flu was worse in prior years. My fiancé who lives with me tested positive but never had one symptom. While I think Covid is real and can be serious for some people, I think it is more of a fear tactic for people who are taking advantage of the situation.  
   I am begging you and anyone who is listening or reading this to please give our children a chance to have in school learning. There are many things at stake here. Mental well-being is a priority for our kids. Quality education is also.
Please get them back in school. He was so relieved for the short time that he was there, But now back to anxiety and technology frustration.

Please read to Board members.
Cheryl Jones
618-521-8841

 

Attachment 2                                    

From: Carmen Jones <carmenj71@yahoo.com>
Date: December 17, 2020 at 4:54:26 PM CST
To: Steve Murphy Steve.Murphy@cchs165.com

 Good afternoon. I understand there is a board meeting tonight to discuss options for the new semester. I hope and pray that you all have decided to let us go back to school. It is time for change. Let them try. I for one have given up all hope with CCHS but was asked to send an email. How will we ever know the outcome if we don’t try. I certainly am not referring to in the classroom on a chrome book. I mean true in person learning just like Carterville, Marion and Herrin. How can you and Jackson county health department justify what CCHS is currently doing when Williamson county has more cases than we do and yet they still go to school. My daughter who is a senior has had the worst semester ever since she started high school. I will and here, as I think I have made my point clear. Thank you.