HIGHLIGHTS
OF THE GOVERNING BOARD MEETING
OF THE MESA UNIFIED SCHOOL DISTRICT NO. 4
TUESDAY, JUNE 27, 2017
MESA PUBLIC SCHOOLS CURRICULUM SERVICES CENTER
BUILDING 2
549 N. Stapley, Mesa, AZ

EXECUTIVE SESSION

On the motion of Mrs. Miner, the Board unanimously agreed to enter executive session at 5:07 p.m., pursuant to A.R.S. §38-431.03.A.1, Discussion of the Statement of Charges Regarding a Certificated Teacher.

The executive session ended at 5:33 p.m.

REGULAR MEETING

1.  Review of Agenda Items
The Board briefly reviewed the agenda. President Richardson asked for clarification on the Growing Up Successfully (GUS) Alternative Program (GAP). She asked that the Shepherd Junior High School resolution be pulled for a separate vote.

Dr. Cowan described Skyline High School’s Genius Bar plans.

Mr. Thompson explained what fiber optics are and described the District’s partnership with the City of Mesa.

2.  Review of Governing Board Calendar
The Board briefly reviewed its calendar through September 2017. Mesa Public Schools will host the next East Valley School Boards Consortium on July 31, 2017. 

3.  Updates from Superintendents
Dr. Cowan reviewed the Expect More Arizona handout. He also reviewed the Children’s Action Alliance voting handout, how legislators voted, and the budget impact of the votes.

Dr. Cowan reviewed the Maricopa County Head Start Report. He reviewed the types of preschools offered and described the work of the City’s Education Taskforce. Dr. Cowan provided Kinder U handouts to the Board.

Dr. Lesar gave an update on the incentive plans. He informed the Board that there were 26 incentive plan appeals granted. Fifteen individual employees will not earn a portion of their goals because they chose not to complete the requirements.

4.  Minutes
On the motion of Mrs. Sears, the Board unanimously approved minutes of a regular meeting held on June 13, 2017.

5.  Personnel Requests
On the motion of Mr. Smith, the Board unanimously approved the certificated and classified personnel requests. 

With the approval of the personnel requests Dr. Cowan introduced the following new administrators:

  • Brent Gardner – Red Mountain High School Assistant Principal (unable to attend)
  • Becky Minarcik – Salk/Stevenson Elementary Schools Dean of Students
  • Aimee De La Torre – Coordinator at Eagleridge
  • Dr. Andria (Andi) Fourlis – Assistant Superintendent of Teaching and Learning 

6.  Consent Agenda
Mr. Peterson pulled the Shepherd Junior High School resolution for a separate vote.

On the motion of Mr. Peterson, the Board unanimously approved the consent agenda according to the recommended action for each item.

7.  Resolution
On the motion of Mrs. Miner, the Board unanimously approved a resolution designating Shepherd Junior High School for the GAP Program to serve students in grades 4-6. 

8.  Proposed Budget for 2017-2018
Mr. O’Brien reviewed 2017-2018 District proposed budget which includes the following:

  • Maintenance and Operations (M&O) increase of $3,110.037 due to an anticipated higher carryover balance than prior years and the State approved 1.06% funding for classroom teacher raises. Special Education budgets have a decrease due to the Governing Board approved budget reductions.
  • Classroom Site Fund (CSF) decreased $741,127 due to estimating the fiscal year 2016 payout and the decrease in Average Daily Membership (ADM).
  • Special Projects decrease of $3,632,301, due to a decrease in Title I approved funds, the 21st Century Grant ending, and reductions in other funds.
  • Capital Outlay decrease of $5,124,106 due to the continued 85% cuts in CORL allocation by the state and the use of carryover funds.
  • The estimated combined tax rate of 7.31% is a .25% reduction from last year.

Mr. Thompson reviewed the Truth in Taxation Document and stated that the budget totaling $563,963,157, including the Truth and Taxation information, would be shared and voted on in the July 11, 2017, Board meeting.

9.  Presentation of Statement of Charges
Dr. Cowan made the following statement:

“President Richardson, during an executive session held earlier this meeting, I presented to the Board the Notice of Dismissal and Statement of Charges against Marvin Knighton, a teacher employed by the District, which you have before you.  It is now appropriate for the Governing Board to take action concerning that Notice of Dismissal and Statement of Charges and to select a hearing officer in the event that Mr. Knighton requests a hearing."

On the motion of Mr. Peterson, the Board unanimously approved the Notice of Dismissal and Statement of Charges against Marvin Knighton, as follows:

  1. The Governing Board finds that the allegations presented in the Statement of Charges against Marvin Knighton, if true, would constitute inadequate classroom performance and misconduct in violation of district policies and, therefore, would provide cause for his dismissal.
  2. The Governing Board directs that Mr. Knighton be served with written notice of the Governing Board's intention to terminate his employment at the expiration of 10 days after service of the notice. The notice shall advise Mr. Knighton of his right to a hearing if he files a written request within 10 days after service of the notice.
  3. If Mr. Knighton requests a hearing, the Governing Board appoints Denise Bainton to serve as impartial hearing officer to conduct a hearing to determine whether there is cause to dismiss Knighton. If Ms. Bainton is not able to serve, the Governing Board appoints Ben Hufford. If Mr. Hufford is not able to serve, the Governing Board appoints Clyde Dangerfield.

10. Video/Call to the Public
This item was not addressed as there were no speakers at this time.

The meeting adjourned 6:59 p.m.