Wednesday, January 11, 2006

Kim Knox's Summary of 1/10/06 SF Board of Education Meeting

For full summary go to the educational justice yahoo group site.
Here are excerpts from Kim's summary -
...The first order of business was the election of officers. Eric Mar nominated Norman Yee for president and Mark Sanchez nominated Eric Mar for president. Eric declined the nomination. ... By acclamation of the Board, Norman Yee was elected. Norman then nominated Sarah Lipson for vice president.
The votewas 5-2 (nays-Wynns and Kelly). Outgoing President Eric Mar congratulated new President Norman Yee and Vice-President Sarah Lipson and yielded the gravel.
Public comment was then taken. President Yee said, "Thank you for showing confidence in my leadership. It is not be very easy in 2006 with budget issues, school closures and thesearch for the new superintendent. Alot of issues will be need to be dealtwith. I am so glad that we have a good board with passionate people who believe in our district's children."

The next item was the Open Government Policy, authored by Mark Sanchez and co-authored by Norman Yee and Sarah Lipson. Several of the key componentsof the open government policy is that you will no longer have to call in toget on the speakers' list-but rather sign a speakers' card on the night ofthe meeting (similar to speaking at the Board of Supervisors). The disrict will be required to disclose all records exchanged between parties duringnegotiations of sole sources and leases. The Superintendent and the President would also have to make their schedules available to the public for all school district-related meetings.Most of the discussion centered around the issues of recording closed meetings. The legislation called for tape recording all of the closedsessions and make them available only in the context of a specific courtorder issued by a judge as part of ongoing litigation. Commissioner Wynnsobjected to the $42,000 cost and President Yee felt that this might be a redflag to anyone who is in litigation with the district. The Board agreed to put a proviso for the District to look at the issues arising from the costsand concerns about litigation and make recommendations.
Sunshine Commissioner Rick Knee and I bought up the issue that the legislation allows the District to have 30 school days to appeal.
Dan Kelly moved that it should be reduced to 20 business days. Jill Wynns pointed out that many on the District staff take the entire month of July off-so it would be difficult for them to be responsive within 20 business days. So it was changed and passed by consensus to require the District to review and provide a response to an individual appealing a response to a request for apublic record within one calendar month.The Board of Education then adopted the Open Government Policy, creating its first sunshine ordinance with a vote of 7-0. (Well done, Mark!)
Those participating in public comment used the time to talk about school closures.
Amos Brown, president of the NAACP, reminded the Board that alarger number of African American students are being impacted by theproposed closures. Dr. Brown recounted that in 1978, the African Americancommunity boycotted the district by homeschooling their students. He statedthat his recolleciton was not a threat-but he was disappointed that therewas not an African American member on the School Board as well as the focuson schools with high percentage of African American scholars on theDistrict's closure list.
The District then adopted the School Assistance and Intervention Team (SAIT) Findings and Recommendations for recommended actions for Dr. William CobbElementary School. In Sept. 2005, the CA Board of Education identified Dr.William Cobb for not meeting its identified targets under the ImmediateIntervention/Underperforming Schools Program. Dr. Cobb will have two years to show progress with the addition of a District/School Liason Team, Contract with a state-approved SAIT providers, complete the academic programsurvey with nine essential program components, and implement the correctiveaction plan and meet identified academic growth targets.
The District then presented the instructional calendar for 2006-07.Commissioner Sanchez brought up the point that the Chinese New Year was noton the calendar. Tom Ruiz, director of Labor Negotiations pointed out thatthis year, the Lunar New Year will begin on the Sunday prior to President'sDay. The Board then discussed if they wanted to recommend a special daythat week to designate the Chinese New Year. Dan Kelly also brought up the concern about that since Jan. 1, 2006 falls on a Monday, school begins on aTuesday (Jan. 2) to begin the spring semester. Student Representative JasonWong suggested that the Board moved the winter break to start one week lateron Monday, Dec. 25 and end on Jan. 4. But Tom Ruiz pointed out that theDistrict would need to negotiate with the unions to see if this would beacceptable. So the BOE decided to postpone the vote on the recommendedinstructional calendar for 2006-07 to a later meeting.
The action item to adopt the Proposition H Committee's recommendations forFY 2006-07 was sent to the Budget Committee.
It is also an infomational item on today's Curriculum Meeting.
The action item to adopt the recommended policy on Sexual Harassment was moved to the Curriculum Committee. Kimshree Maufas talked about the Commission of the Status of Women's request to review the policy in order toprovide comments to the Board.
The item to adopt the Superintendent's recommendation to deny the EdisonCharter Academy's petition for renewal passed when at the request of Edision Charter Academy, Wynns moved to suspend the rules so that the final votecould be cast that night. The Board voted 7-0 to deny Edison CharterAcademy's petition for renewal. This is a required step in order for EdisonCharter Academy to again get its charter passed and renewed by the staterather than the district.
....At 12:05 a.m., President Yee closed the first board meeting of his presidency.

[thanks to Kim Knox for posting these notes- eric]
for more of Kim's postings and other useful info see quality SF schools for all students

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