March 3 and 4, 2010
The State Board of Education March Meeting was held in Halifax County beginning with a tour of Aurelian Springs Elementary School and continuing on to William R. Davie Middle School where the Business/Finance and Advocacy Committee, Leadership and Innovation Committee, Globally Competitive Student Committee, and Healthy, Responsible Students Committee met on Wednesday, March 3. On Thursday, March 4, members of the State Board toured Southeast Halifax High School and then returned to William R. Davie Middle School where the full State Board of Education met to complete the remainder of the Agenda. At this time, the Twenty-First Century Professionals Committee had only one item approved on the Consent Agenda. Access to the Executive Summaries and back up documents are on the SBE website at: http://www.dpi.state.nc.us/stateboard/meetings/2010/03.
Wednesday, March 3, 2010
Business/Finance and Advocacy Committee Meeting (10:00 AM)
2010-2011 Supplemental Budget the supplemental budget was approved by conference call on Thursday, February 18. Copies are available upon request from my office.
- TCS 1 Science Safety Standards APPROVED the “Science Safety Standards” policy and the APA rule-making process will start. Furthermore, the DPI, School Planning Section, is authorized to review and approve middle and high school science facilities for safety. House Bill 42, An Act to Implement Science Safety Measures in the Public Schools” amends G.S. 115C-521 by the addition of the following language: (c1) No local board of education shall apply for a certificate of occupancy for any new middle or high school building until the plans for the science laboratory areas of the building have been reviewed and approved to meet accepted safety standards for school science laboratories and related preparation rooms and stockrooms. The review and approval of the plans may be done by the SBE or by any other entity that is licensed or authorized by the State Board to do so.
Committee Meeting: No Discussion.
Action on First Reading
- TCS 2 Request for Repayment Waivers of the National Board Certification APPROVED the recommendations of the Appeals Panel. The State pays the participation fee for National Board Certification. If a teacher withdraws from the process or completes the process, but does not teach for at least one year after the process is finished they are required to repay the State the participation fee. The individuals requesting waivers are not included in this section. This is a Closed Session item.
- TCS 3 Council on Educational Services for Exceptional Children The State Board briefly discussed the Council on Educational Services for Exceptional Children vacancies and provide recommendations to fill the following positions: LEA representative, a parent of a child with disabilities, and Exceptional Children teacher, and a vocational/business/community representative. The appointment terms are from July 1, 2010 through June 30, 2014. The approval process will take place at the April meeting of the SBE.
Committee Meeting: Board members were requested to send recommendations to Ms. Betsy West as soon as possible.
- TCS 4 Proposed SBE Policy Regarding LEA Rules and Regulations Related to Charter Transportation for School Related Events and Activities The State Board discussed a new policy to ensure the safety of students who travel on school activity trips by requiring LEAs to have on file in the Superintendent’s office rules, regulations, and policies to assure the safety of students when contracting for services to provide transportation for students and school groups attending school-related events. The policy requires the LEA to maintain a pre-approved list of contract motorcoach transportation providers. The Institute for Transportation Research and Education at NCSU has recommended this action in lieu of a statewide permit for motorcoach carriers. In view of the economic issues facing the LEAs it was determined and now agreed upon by the Motorcoach Association that the SBE policy is preferable to a statewide permit program. Notification was sent to all LEAs in May of 2009. This item will be presented for Action at the April SBE meeting. The policy is effective on September 1, 2010 and LEAs will need to comply by that time.
Committee Meeting: Derek Graham addressed the 2009 legislation and efforts to determine how to proceed. The new policy requires LEAs to have a policy, rules, and regulations, as well as a list of preapproved motorcoach providers for activity trips. Mr. Graham told members the policy in lieu of a statewide permit was less expensive and was agreed upon by the interested parties.
- TCS 5 Proposed SBE Policy to Require School Bus Driver Certification for Activity Bus Drivers The State Board discussed a new policy to improve student safety by ensuring new drivers of school activity buses have received required training prior to transporting any students on school activity trips. Fifty–five of the 110 LEAs responded they already require activity bus drivers to hold a school bus certificate. A school bus certificate requires six days of training, three days behind the wheel and three days of classroom instruction. DMV provides this instruction. They will also be required to obtain their CDL license by taking an examination once they have completed training. This will be presented for Action in April. The policy only impacts NEW drivers and will be effective July 1, 2010. LEAs will have the flexibility to decide whether to make this effective with existing drivers. LEAs’ will also be required to keep records on those individuals who were initially licensed before and after July 1, 2010.
Committee Meeting: Initially the Federal Motor Carrier Association wanted to require 90 hours of training for drivers who drive activity buses, but that was too much and so when this issue was reviewed statewide it was determined there are a little less than half of the LEAs who do not require any training. The policy is being recommended to ensure the activity bus drivers receive some training. Beginning in July, the North Carolina Transportation Association will require that all new drivers have training if they are driving an activity bus as defined by DMV. DMV requested that in lieu of the July 2013 date in the policy that all training for the NC school bus certificate by drivers would need to be completed by July 1, 2015. This would give those who may not need their license renewed the time to get the school bus certificate and required training. School bus safety is paramount. Minibuses (activity buses) are not impacted since they are not eligible to get a CDL with these buses. A commercial driver’s license (CDL) is an 8-year license. Board members had very few questions.
- TCS 6 Proposed SBE Policy to Require Training for School Bus Inspectors The State Board reviewed a new policy intended to improve student safety by ensuring that the individuals inspecting school buses and activity buses have completed training to educate them on proper school bus and activity bus inspection criteria and procedures. This item will be presented for Action at the April meeting. The effective date of the requirement is August 1, 2011. Initial training sessions for LEA staff is slated to begin July 1, 2010. Many of the details of this inspection training were not included in the policy, but will be made available to LEAs as they are finalized in the coming weeks.
Committee Meeting: Documentation will be required on 30-day inspections effective in 2011. Regional training will be provided by DPI. They will use the train the trainer approach as well as videos and other strategies to assist in this process. All the details have not been determined. There is a committee working on how to implement this policy. When asked about the cost, Mr. Graham told members they would be working this out with minimal expense and the LEAs would primarily need to provide their employees with the time off to take the training and no other costs.
- TCS 8 Tuition Fee for Non-public School Students in North Carolina Virtual Public School The State Board reviewed five options for tuition fees for non-public students to attend the North Carolina Virtual School. These include: Option1) $470 for year-long course, $420 for block and semester course, $270 for summer, $245 or $170 for SAT, Option 2) $750 for year-long course and $375 for semester, Option 3) $468 for year-long course, other courses equal to the teacher amount per student plus $50 (semester $400, summer $250, SAT $225 and $150), Option 4) The student cost paid to the teacher plus $100 ($500 for year-long, $450 for block and semester, $300 for summer, $275 or $200 for SAT) Option 5) The student cost paid to the teacher plus 17.1 percent, $468 for year-long, $410 for block and semester, $234 for summer, $205 or $118 for SAT. The average cost per student per course that DPI has paid to other states over the past few years is $544. The local board of education is required to charge tuition to non-public school students if they are requesting to take courses from NCVPS. The State Board of Education is required to establish the tuition for courses offered in the summer and the following school year by March annually. The State Board shall also identify the portion of the tuition to be retained by the local board of education for managing the collection of the tuition. This will be an Action item for April.
Committee Meeting: Philip Price presented this item. He told members they had a list of four options to consider. Members asked questions about Option 2, which was very high. Mr. Price indicated Option 2 is Florida’s costs for courses in its NCVPS program. Board member Greene questioned why these private and home school students would have to pay at all since their parents are taxpayers in NC. She was advised the State does not provide funds to the LEAs to handle these courses and the costs are in line with costs for summer courses being taught in schools now. Board members asked for Philip’s recommendation and he noted Option 4. Option 4) The student cost paid to the teacher plus $100 ($500 for year-long, $450 for block and semester, $300 for summer, $275 or $200 for SAT). One question was how many home school and private school students are anticipated to participate. Another issue raised was what will the LEAs responsibility be for these home school and private schools students beyond registering them and collecting and transmitting tuition? There was no clear response to this issue, though I suspect there will not be any added responsibilities for the LEAs.
Update on Contracts
Contracts over $25,000 – 16 Proposals
Contracts under $25,000 – 13 Proposals
Leadership for Innovation Committee (1:30 PM)
Action and Discussion Agenda
- LFI 1 Renewal Recommendations for Charter Schools with Charters Expiring June 2010 VOTED to NON-RENEW both of the charters for: Cape Lookout Marine Science High School and The Academy of Moore County. The Office of Charter Schools provided Cape Lookout Marine Academy with a two-year renewal previously, due to their low performance composite. , The school is also out-of-compliance with their mission, which was marine science. They are presently serving low-performing students, like an alternative school. In addition, they are continuously losing students (425-over the last five years-averaging 85 a year with an enrollment total of 124). The Office of Charter Schools is not recommending renewal of the charter for Cape Lookout. The Academy of Moore County was given a three-year renewal in 2007. They have made improvements in academics and their facility. Based on the changes they have implemented the Office of Charter Schools is recommending a three-year renewal for The Academy of Moore County.
February Board Meeting: Advocacy by legislators from Carteret County for Cape Lookout and concerns with student achievement at Academy of Moore prompted the Board to pull the items from the agenda for a month delay.
March Board Meeting: the committee met, but did not bring forward a recommendation for the full Board. On Thursday, at the Board meeting, Ms. Bartlett made a motion for non-renewal of Cape Lookout Marine Academy. Ms. Greene presented a substitute motion to renew the charter for one year. The substitute motion failed for lack of a majority and Ms. Bartlett’s motion for non-renewal passed with two dissenting votes.
Next a motion was made by Ms. Bartlett for non-renewal of the The Academy of Moore charter school. Once again Ms. Greene made a substitute motion to approve a three year renewal (as recommended by DPI), but the substitute motion failed with only two votes and Ms. Bartlett’s non renewal motion passed with a majority and two dissenting votes again. All votes were called on a voice vote with no show of hands.
Action on First Reading
- LFI 2 Final Approval of New Charter Schools APPROVED the three new charter schools. The SBE may authorize no more than 100 charter schools and at the time of the application review process, there were 97 active charters, leaving three openings for new charter applications. The Office of Charter Schools recommends the final approval of Henderson Collegiate (Vance County), Lake Lure Classical Academy (Rutherford County), and Mountain Island Charter School (Gaston County).
Committee Meeting: No Discussion.
Moved to Action on First Reading
- LFI 4 School-Based Calendar Waivers for Educational Purposes APPROVED the calendar waiver requests for educational purposes and to make a determination as to whether the requests should be granted or denied. The following LEAs have requested waivers, Durham Public Schools for the City of Medicine Academy, Hertford County Public Schools for C.S. Brown Student Development Center High School, Lee County Public Schools for Lee County High School and Southern Lee High School, and Wayne County Public Schools for Wayne School of Engineering.
Committee Meeting: The recommendation of the Committee is to approve the requested waivers for Durham Public Schools, Hertford Public Schools and Wayne County Public Schools. The request from the Lee County Public Schools was denied.
Moved to Action on First Reading
- LFI 5 Program Approval Requests Under the Innovative Education Initiatives Act APPROVED the following programs under the Innovative Education Initiatives Act: Avery High School (Accelerated Learning- the average daily membership of Avery County High School will be divided among three academies-Leadership, STEM and Viking); Charlotte-Mecklenburg, e-Learning Academy, and Hawthorne High School (High school students at risk of dropping out of school before attaining a high school diploma); Bessemer City High School, Gaston County (Early College Program for high school at risk students); T. Wingate Andrews High School, Guilford County Schools (Aviation Academy- High school students at risk); Fair Bluff Academy, Columbus County Schools (Dropout Prevention-Vocational Drafting Technology, Biotechnology, Communications, Child Care, Cosmetology, Industrial Plant Maintenance, Criminal Justice, Food Service and Welding).
Committee Meeting: Staff addressed the program requests and said the Board could approve the programs without approving the waivers. Some of the waivers were for schools to have principals that did not have a principal license. Board members briefly discussed this issue and staff will bring this back to the Board with a recommendation. Members were reminded sometimes they need to think outside the box and not get too bogged down in doing things as we always have done them.
- LFI 3 Grandfather Academy Charter Enrollment Issues The State Board reviewed the enrollment issues with Grandfather Academy. State law for charter schools clearly designates the number of students to be served, which shall be at least 65, and the minimum number of teachers to be employed at the school in statute. Grandfather Academy was given an exemption for minimum enrollment of 50 students in their charter. However, the enrollment at Grandfather has been consistently below their charter minimum. On January 26, 2010 they were requested by the Office of Charter Schools to present a plan for reaching or exceeding the 50 student minimum. In their response and request for an exemption, they indicated that the children who attend a school of the nature and purpose of Grandfather Academy must have individualized instruction and attention that cannot be fully realized in a larger setting. The Charter is effective until 2017. The Grandfather Academy has not submitted a plan, as requested by DPI, to reach their minimum enrollment requirement. DPI has not included a recommendation on this item.
Committee Meeting: The school is currently facing financial issues and their enrollment has dropped to 19 students. The program is important and members tried to understand why the numbers had gotten so low. They already had the flexibility to be below the state minimum of 65, but through the past few years it has dropped so low they cannot possibly be financially viable with only $135,000 for next year. This was originally a private residential school. There will be more discussion next month on the school.
-NCVPS/LEO Director’s Report by Dr. Setser included an update of the Training of Principals. He told members Bertie is the first district to achieve the last mile of connectivity, in NC. There has been discussion about the success of special education students nationally participating in virtual programs. It provides for speech pathologists and other professional to meet with students live by camera without requiring all the traveling from one school to another. Last month Bryan warned of problems in several states with their virtual programs and all but Mississippi had resolved their issues. The private providers who are coming into states to try and get contracts have courses with one teacher and 150- students which is allowing the private provider to gain a good profit. NC has 1 teacher for every 25 students. A report is going to Joint Education Oversight on the NCVPS program. He also told members about a challenge by the World Bank at http://www.urgentevoke.com where between March 4 and 20, anyone can logon who is 13 or older and participate in the challenge to solve some interesting problems. There will be rewards for the winners including educational scholarships.
Globally Competitive Students Committee (3:00 PM)
- GCS 1 Recommendations for Compliance with HB 88, the Healthy Youth Act APPROVED the modifications to pages (6,42-44,54,59-60, 62-63,68-69 and 78-81 within the 2006 Healthful Living Standard Course of Study in order to meet the requirements of House Bill 88, 2009 Healthy Youth Act. This legislation modified G.S. 115C-81 as it relates to Abstinence Until Marriage Education, now referred to as Reproductive Health and Safety Education, within the health education curriculum. DPI staff is recommending changes to the course of study to comply with the new law. They have included many of the sections of the law in the course of study which expands the instruction for students beginning in 7th grade on reproductive health and safety. They are now titling this curriculum as Guidelines for Instruction Regarding Reproductive Health and Safety Education. It adds language to allow the local board of education to expand on the subject areas to be taught in the program and on the instructional objectives to be met. Another key piece of the curriculum includes language requiring each school board to adopt a policy and provide a way for a parent/guardian to withdraw his or her child from instruction required under this statute.
The link to the documents in the section is included: http://www.ncpublicschools.org/docs/stateboard/meetings/2010/02/gcs/02gcs.pdf.
February Committee Meeting: David Gardner reviewed the changes, which included removing references to “Abstinence Until Marriage” language, age appropriate material, removal of public hearing option, approval to support LEAs and revisions to the Standard Course of Study.
March Committee Meeting: No Discussion.
Action on First Reading
- GCS 2 Changes to Policy Delineating the Components of the ABC’s Accountability Program for the 2010-2011 School Year APPROVED the policy change. With the adoption of the new high school mathematics essential standards and the emphasis on an integrated approach to the teach of mathematics, LEAs are requesting that the current Geometry End-of-Course (EOC) assessment be removed from the statewide testing program starting with the 2010-2011 school year. The state will have new assessments in place for the new curriculum with Mathematics A assessment and Mathematics B/C assessment. The Mathematics A assessment will be administered at the conclusion of either Algebra I or Integrated Mathematics I. The Mathematics B/C assessment will be administered at the conclusion of either the Geometry and Algebra II course sequence or the Integrated Mathematics II and Integrated Mathematics III sequence. Removing the Geometry EOC assessment will allow LEAs to do a better job of scheduling students and making adjustments to facilitate a smooth transition to the new curriculum.
Committee Meeting: The Committee agreed to eliminate the Geometry EOC assessment beginning with the 2010-2011 school year.
Healthy, Responsible Students Committee
- HRS 1 Revisions to HRS-A-000: Acts of School Violence Reported to Law Enforcement and to the State Board of Education APPROVED the proposed revisions to HRS-A-000. The policy was presented in October 2009 and is being presented again. It is being revised to clarify incidents/acts required by law to be reported to Law Enforcement and to the State Board of Education by the principal. The policy lists the following incidents to be reported to law enforcement: 1) Assault resulting in serious personal injury as defined in G.S. 14-32.4; 2) Sexual Assault as defined in G.S.14-27.5A and 14-33(c )(2); 3) Sexual offense as defined in G.S. 14-27.4 through 14-27.5 and 14-27.7A; 4) Rape as defined in G.S. 14-27.3 and 14-27.7A; 5) Kidnapping as defined in G.S.14-37; 6) Indecent liberties with a minor as defined in G.S.14-202.1; 7) Assault involving the use of a weapon as defined in G.S.14-34 through 14-34.9; 8 ) Possession of a firearm in violation of the law as defined in G.S. 14-269.2; 9) Possession of a weapon in violation of the law as defined in G. S. 14-269.2; and 10) Possession of a controlled substance in violation of the law as defined in the North Carolina Controlled Substances Act as defined in Article 5 of G. S. 90-86 through 90-113.8. Other incidents required to be reported to law enforcement by the principal in addition to those listed in G.S. 115C-288 (g) are: 1) Assault on school officials, employees, and volunteers as defined in G.S. 14-33 ( c)(6); 2) Homicide as defined in G.S. 14-17; 3) Robbery with a dangerous weapon as defined in G.S. 14-87; 4) Unlawful, underage sales, purchase, provision, possession, or consumption of alcoholic beverages as defined in G. S. 18B-302; 5) Making bomb threats or engaging in bomb hoaxes as defined in G. S. 14-69.2; 6) Willfully burning a school building as defined in G. S. 14-60. In addition Section C has been added and states: The offenses listed in subpart (b) together with all offenses that are required to be reported to law enforcement pursuant to G. S. 115C-288(g), shall be reported annually to the State Board of Education pursuant to G.S. 115C-12(21). The report shall be submitted electronically via a Department of Public Instruction approved discipline report system that conforms to the State’s Uniform Education Reporting System.
The entire policy can be accessed from the following link:
February Committee Meeting: Board member Willoughby chairs the Committee and she worked with Reginald King and Katie Cornetto to draft this change to the policy. Ms. Willoughby noted Leanne Winner with NCSBA has offered to provide documents to help LEAs and school administrators. The Committee agreed the definitions as stated in statute for each of the 16 offenses listed should be documented in the policy. Principals will be required to report all illegal activity to law enforcement to which they are aware or it will be a misdemeanor for not reporting to law enforcement. There is no requirement to report to the Superintendent. A suggestion was made to develop a companion document for administrators defining the statutes listed in the policy in order to provide additional support. Additional training may also be required for administrators. The target date for implementation of the policy is 2010-2011. Also included in the discussion was to suggest a process for a reporting line to law enforcement. A question was raised could principals report to SROs and it was agreed they are part of law enforcement and that would be acceptable. The data collected for the 16 offenses will be included in the information collected by DPI for the School Violence Report. The Committee also indicated further clarification of the language “simple assault” may need to be expanded in the law. There is concern about the lack of definitions and the simple assault could cause many more calls to law enforcement for what may be minor issues or behavior by an autistic or other special education child. Ms. Willoughby indicated it was not the responsibility of the SBE to interpret law in its policy and so the issue of simple assault would have to be handled in other ways. The Associations NCSBA, NCASA, and NCAE are not in support of the policy as it is being revised. This item will be presented for action.
March Committee Meeting: There were two changes to the policy since it was presented. The LEAs shall report annually to the State Board and House Bill 1078 text is included after the policy to help guide principals and LEAs on reporting requirements in the updated policy. Law enforcement will be responsible for working with principals in making decisions. There is no statutory definition of simple assault and so the common law definition is the best guide. A Board member asked what the offense is for a principal who does not contact law enforcement and they were advised it is a Class 3 Misdemeanor.
Thursday, March 4, 2010
Tour of Southeast Halifax High School
State Board of Education Meeting, (11:00 AM) Dr. William Harrison, Chairman
Call to Order
Pledge of Allegiance:
Approval of Minutes
Key Initiatives Reports and Discussion
CEDARS Update- Mr. Adam Levinson presented an update. He told the Board that NC WISE will need to be fully implemented in order for CEDARS to be working. Right now Charlotte and Wake are still not part of the NC WISE main network. These two districts account for 20 percent of the student. Adam noted that talks are underway with Charlotte and he anticipates Wake will be next. The time frame for completion of CEDARS has been moved from Summer 2010 to December 31, 2010.
Healthy, Responsible Students Committee
- HRS 2 Consolidated Data Report: Crime and Violence, Suspension and Expulsion, and Dropout Rates and Count The State Board of Education shall report annually to the Joint Legislative Education Oversight Committee on the number of students who have dropped out of school, been suspended, been expelled, placed in an alternative program, and committee acts of violence. The full report will be discussed at the State Board meeting. This document can be accessed from the link below: www.ncpublicschools.org/docs/research/discipline/reports/consolidated/2008-09/consolidated-report.pdf
Board Meeting: The number of state high school dropouts was down (19,184) in 2008-09 a decrease of 3,250 from the 22,434 reported in 2007-08. Wake County Public School System high schools reported a dropout rate of 3.47 percent (1,430 students) for the 2008-09 academic year. The WCPSS dropout rate is lower than the state’s (4.27 percent) and lower than most other urban NC school districts: Charlotte-Mecklenburg 4.99 percent, Forsyth 4.76 percent, Durham 4.26 percent, and Cumberland 3.78 percent. Guilford County had the lowest rate of 3.13 percent. Wake however is listed as one of the LEAs with the highest number of long-term suspension. Charlotte-Mecklenburg went from over 1,000 long-term suspension in 2007-2008 to less than 50 (47) in 2008-2009. There was also a large drop in short-term suspensions for K-8 this year. In reviewing the data there seems to be a connection between the dropout rate and the number of long-term suspensions. Many of the eastern counties have high numbers in both of these areas.
Board Meeting and Committee Chair Reports
21st Century Professionals Committee
- TCP 1 Recommendations for Compliance with HB 88, the Healthy Youth Act Teacher Education Specialty Area Standards for Health Education Teacher Candidates APPROVED the modifications to pages 77-78 and 81-82 of the Teacher Education Specialty Area Standards, document to add reproductive health and safety education language, to meet the requirements of House Bill 88.
Board Meeting: No questions.
Ms. Harris told Board members she was working with staff to implement a lateral entry group and had determined the specific areas for representation, but not the names. Board members should submit those names once the email goes out to them identifying the areas. Mr. McDevitt has agreed to be at the first meeting to assist with information from his earlier committee on teacher lateral entry. Dr. Hoke (Superintendent Advisor to the Board) commented on the 16 Superintendents who have agreed to pilot the superintendent evaluation instrument and that the pilot is beginning this week.
Moved to Consent Agenda
- TCS 7 Appointment of Individuals to the State Evaluation Committee on Teacher Education APPROVED the reappointment of three members and the appointment of two new members to the State Evaluation Committee on Teacher Education. Members serve three year staggered terms. Nominations were requested from Board members. Dr. Vivian Covington, Director of Education, East Carolina University, Dr. Walter Hart, Assistant Superintendent for Administration, Rowan-Salisbury Schools, and Dr. Micha Jefferies, Assistant Professor, NCSU are recommended for reappointment. Dr. Tom Daly III, Superintendent Martin County Schools and Dr. Mariann Tillery, Dean, School of Education, High Point University are nominated for initial appointment.
Committee Meeting: This item was moved to Consent. This Committee meets two or three times per year.
-Dr. June Atkinson: Dr. Atkinson listed all her events and activities over the past month. Of note was the support of DPI in the 2010 Census data collection.
-Dr. Bill Harrison, Chairman announced at 11:30 AM on Thursday that NC is one of fifteen first round finalists for the Race to the Top grant. ACRE will have a major presentation next month.
-Legislative Update: Handout by Chris Minard.