April 23, 2020

The Waterford-Halfmoon Union Free School District Board of Education Finance Meeting dated April 23, 2020 was called to order at 6:00pm by Mrs. Ricci.

PRESENT (in person): Marcia Ricci, David Lee, Jamie Maloney, Jack Catanzarita, Carolyn Bell

PRESENT (via Webex): Tammi Dehler, Denise Carutasu

ALSO PRESENT (in person): Patrick Pomerville, Rachel Schwendinger, Joseph Siracuse, Christopher Scanlan, Jennifer Bull, Joel Richardson


2020 - 2021 Proposed District Budget 
Ms. Schwendinger presented an updated version of the 2020 - 2021 School District Budget with further adjustments in light of possible changes in the New York State Aid projections due to the COVID 19 pandemic.  Finance Committee Presentation April 23, 2020.pdf

After the presentation, Board members had questions on the following topics: budget reserves, unrestricted fund balance, state aid, guidelines on unforseen expenses, and interest earnings.

The Finance Meeting ended at 6:41pm.



The Waterford-Halfmoon Union Free School District Board of Education Regular Meeting dated April 23, 2020 was called to order at 7:00pm by Mrs. Ricci.

PRESENT (in person): Marcia Ricci, David Lee, Jamie Maloney, Jack Catanzarita, Carolyn Bell

PRESENT (via Webex): Tammi Dehler, Denise Carutasu

ALSO PRESENT (in person): Patrick Pomerville, Rachel Schwendinger, Joseph Siracuse, Christopher Scanlan, Jennifer Bull, Joel Richardson

ALSO PRESENT (via Webex, beginning at the 7:00pm regular meeting): Paul Gervasio, Christina Bell, Patrice King, Ken Williams, Jessica Johnson

There were no comments from the public regarding items on this evening’s action agenda.

Comments from the Administration

Mr. Scanlan reported that third quarter report cards will be mailed tomorrow to students in grades 7 - 12.  A letter will be sent to all senior class students.  This situation is impacting them more than students in other grade levels.  Plans are being made to recognize seniors for their accomplishments.  

Mrs. Bull thanked Brandy Gagliardi, Barb Delaney, Carol Burniche and Karen Budrakey for continuing the Backpack program. The Waterford-Cohoes Elks Lodge reached out to help out as well and Ms. Schwendinger arranged bus transportation to ensure those students continued to receive their needed food.

Mr. Pomerville announced that the Top 10 Award dinner will be cancelled this year but plans are being made to recognize those students.  Mr. Pomerville and the administrative team have spent a lot of time and effort working to provide continuity of education while teachers and students are working from home noting that administrative input is crucial.

Second Reading of Policy #5551 Fiscal Accounting and Reporting
SUBJECT: Policy of the Board of Education for the Waterford-Halfmoon Union Free School District Related to the Use of Department of Education Grant Funds during Extraordinary Circumstances

This policy is to address extraordinary circumstances (such as those caused by COVID-19) to ensure a plan for emergency contingencies for the use of Federal grant funds.   This policy will address emergency contingencies in place for Federal and non-Federal similarly situated employees when the employee is unable to work or to perform such work or activities envisioned through the grant due to such closure (such as the COVID-19 closure).  Notwithstanding the school closure as a result of an emergency (such as closure due to COVID-19), the District will continue to use Federal, State and local funding to facilitate continuing activities, including distance learning opportunities for students served by Federal grants.  

The District will continue to provide employees’ compensation (including, but not limited to salaries, wages, fringe benefits and other allocable and reasonable costs) funded by a specific Federal grant even with the District closed to the same extent that compensation is paid from all funding sources (including non-Federal funds) under such unexpected or extraordinary circumstances (such as an extended closure due to a public health emergency like COVID-19).  However, an employee who is being paid with Federal funds while program grant activities are closed in whole or in part due to extraordinary circumstances (such as  the COVID-19 pandemic) may not also be paid for the time during which the program is closed by the organization or another organization for working on other activities that are not closed down. Under no circumstances will an employee receive compensation beyond what he/she is designated to receive.  

The District will continue to maintain appropriate records and cost documentation to substantiate the charging of any compensation costs related to interruption of operations or services, in accordance with 2 CFR § 200.302, 2 CFR § 200.430(I), and 2 CFR § 200.333. Despite and throughout the school closure, all employees, whether receiving compensation through Federal funds or non-Federal funds, will continue to perform activities and services to the District as so directed. 

Where Federal funds were allocated for a conference, training, or other similar activity which has been cancelled or postponed due to extraordinary circumstances (such as COVID-19), such funds may be used, at the discretion of the Superintendent/Board or their designee, to refund any nonrefundable costs related to such cancellation.  In order to be eligible to recover lost costs from a cancelled or postponed conference, training or other similar activity,  the employee must document and demonstrate that s/he first sought reimbursement or refunds from the sponsoring agency, business, travel or lodging related agents or entities, if available.  If applicable, the employee must also show that he/she first complied with, to the extent possible in light of the COVID-19 pandemic) any “act of God” provision that may have been in an agreement or contract for the conference, training, or other similar activity through which refund or reimbursement may be obtained. Once the employee has made the foregoing showings, the District may charge the appropriate grant for the cancellation costs, provided the costs were reasonable and incurred in order to carry out an allowable activity under the grant consistent with the Federal cost principles as set forth in 2 CFR Part 200 Subpart E. 

Although the District may use funds from the Department grant to refund lost costs due to cancelled or postponed conferences, trainings and other similar activities, grantees and subgrantees recognize that additional funds may not be available, if such refunds or reimbursement results in a shortage of funds to eventually carry out the event or travel.  The District will maintain appropriate records and cost documentation as required by 2 CFR § 200.302 and 2 CFR § 200.333 to substantiate the charging of any cancellation or other fees related to the interruption of operations or services under such extraordinary conditions. 

While health concerns related to COVID-19 has suspended or deterred most travel, including grant-supported travel, if travel is permitted by Federal, State, and local directives and is the only means to carry out an essential function that must be accomplished on a time-sensitive basis during the COVID-19 pandemic, consistent with the District’s travel policy, travel insurance may be purchased provided the cost is reasonable and allocable to the grant consistent with the Federal cost principles set forth in 2 CFR Part 200 Subpart E. 
Adopted: 4/23/2020; Created: April 13, 2020

Presentation: Continuity of Education, WHUFSD Administration

Mr. Siracuse is very proud of his teachers.  He uses a video each week to enhance communication.  Teachers and administrators have been reaching out to families to engage students in the learning process.  Provisions are being made for those students who may fall behind. Continuity of Education, Elementary.pdf
 
Mrs. Bull described how the special education teachers in each building and the related service providers are providing continuity of learning. They primarily use Google classroom, but also record videos and provide links to other relevant resources for learning. They have been diligent about trying to get students engaged in their lessons/therapies through invitations on Google classroom, phone calls, texts, emails. They are working hard at making sure to engage students, get parents on board with the importance of students logging on, providing relevant lessons, and providing 1:1 instruction as requested by parents or students. They will continue daily/weekly to try to get more students engaged. Mrs. Bull thanked Kathy Kutny for the resources she has provided as well to all teachers.  Continuity of Education, Special Education.pdf

As 
Mr. Scanlan and Mr. Richardson are working with teachers to modify plans to enable student success (staggering classes, recording and posting live sessions.)  They thanked Mr. Spretty and Mr. Hathaway for their work on providing the needed technology.  Mr. Scanlan noted that you cannot replace the face-to-face model of teachers providing instruction for students in the classroom.  The administrators are mindful of overwhelming both faculty and students in this effort.  Parents have been very supportive.  Board members asked about special area classes (PE, art, music, etc); coordinating subjects to keep things manageable, due dates on assignments, and glitches in the marking system.  Adjustments can be made in third quarter grades depending on student effort, completed assignments, etc., and then reflected in the fourth quarter.    Continuity of Education, Gr. 7-12.pdf

Mr. Pomerville stated it is a common understanding that failing grades in the third quarter are not necessarily final.  Everyone is willing to work with the children to improve. The district is providing every effort to be successful.  Communication within departments is helpful.  

A discussion followed on the number of instruction hours and different teaching styles.  Google Meet issues have been addressed.  

ACTION
On motion by Mr. Lee, seconded by Mrs. Maloney, and by a vote of 7 - 0 the Board approved the minutes of the April 2, 2020 Board of Education meeting.

On motion by Mr. Lee, seconded by Mrs. Maloney, and by a vote of 7 - 0 the Board approved the following warrants:
Capital Fund #19 for $257.83
School Lunch #16 for $4,992.36
General Fund #59 for $228,708.20

On motion by Mr. Lee, seconded by Mrs. Maloney, and by a vote of 7 - 0 the Board approved the Claims Audit ending March 2020.

On motion by Mr. Lee, seconded by Mrs. Maloney, and by a vote of 7 - 0 the Board approved  Policy 5551 Fiscal Accounting and Reporting.

The Board reviewed CSE minutes dated 3/2/2020, 3/5/2020, 3/11/2020, 3/16/2020, 3/16/2020, 3/25/2020, 3/26/2020.

On motion by Mr. Lee, seconded by Mrs. Maloney, and by a vote of 7 - 0 the Board approved a 2019 - 2020 health service contract with North Greenbush Common School District for 6 students @ $234.44 for a total of $1,406.64.

On motion by Mr. Lee, seconded by Mrs. Maloney, and by a vote of 7 - 0 the Board approved a 2019 - 2020 health service contract with South Colonie Central Schools for 11 students @ $771.56 for a total of $8,487.16

On motion by Mr. Lee, seconded by Mrs. Maloney, and by a vote of 7 - 0 the Board declared  as surplus the following electronic items: Ipad $329.00; Touchchat app $149.99; Chat Wrap 10 with shoulder strap, mounting plate, and enhanced audio $479.00; Table Top Mount with clamp and device socket $465.00; effective June 30, 2020.

On motion by Mr. Lee, seconded by Mrs. Maloney, and by a vote of 7 - 0 the Board accepted the following club advisor reports for the 2019 - 2020 school year:
Publishing Center, Julie Bishop
High School National Honor Society, Nicole Spulnick and Jodi Ancin
Mock Trial, Helene Clinton and Deb Ford
Class of 2021, Natalie Kosar, Amy Atwood
Fordian Yearbook, Elizabeth Wyld
HS Drama, Colleen Rishel

On motion by Mr. Lee, seconded by Mrs. Maloney, and by a vote of 7 - 0 the Board approved the following club advisor appointments for the 2020 - 2021 school year; salary per the WTA contract:
Julie Bishop, Publishing Center
Nicole Spulnick and Jodi Ancin, HS National Honor Society
Natalie Kosar, Amy Atwood, Class of 2021
Colleen Rishel, HS Drama

On motion by Mr. Lee, seconded by Mrs. Maloney, and by a vote of 7 - 0 the Board approved the one year provisional probationary appointment of Judith LaBarge as custodian effective April 7, 2020; salary per the CSEA contract.

On motion by Mr. Lee, seconded by Mrs. Maloney, and by a vote of 7 - 0 the Board approved the Corrective Action Plan for the Financial Statements for the Year Ending June 30, 2019.

On motion by Mr. Lee, seconded by Mrs. Maloney, and by a vote of 7 - 0 the Board approved the Revenue Status Report Ending March 2020.

On motion by Mr. Lee, seconded by Mrs. Maloney, and by a vote of 7 - 0 the Board approved the Appropriations Status Report Ending March 2020.

On motion by Mr. Lee, seconded by Mrs. Maloney, and by a vote of 7 - 0 the Board approved the Treasurer’s Report Ending March 2020.

On motion by Mr. Lee, seconded by Mrs. Maloney, and by a vote of 7 - 0 the Board approved the Corrective Action Plan for the Extra Classroom Activity Fund Financial Statements for the year ending June 30, 2019.

On motion by Mr. Lee, seconded by Mrs. Maloney, and by a vote of 7 - 0 the Board approved the following year-end reports from club and activity advisors for the 2019 - 2020 school year:
Sidekicks, Barbara Smith, Helene Clinton
High School Student Government, Allie Hornung and Paul Ferrara

On motion by Mr. Lee, seconded by Mrs. Maloney, and by a vote of 7 - 0 the Board approved the appointment of the following club and activity advisors for the 2020 - 2021 school year; salary per the WTA contract:
Elizabeth Wyld, High School Yearbook Advisor 
Barbara Smith and Helene Clinton, Sidekicks
Allie Hornung and Paul Ferrara, High School Student Government

On motion by Mr. Lee, seconded by Mrs. Maloney, and by a vote of 7 - 0 the Board accepted the Jefferson-Lewis BOCES Final Service Commitment for the 2020 - 2021 school year.

On motion by Mr. Lee, seconded by Mrs. Maloney, and by a vote of 7 - 0 the Board approved a request from Noreen Gervasio for a six to eight week leave of absence per the WTA contract beginning on or about April 30, 2020; returning when medically able per doctor’s instructions.

On motion by Mr. Lee, seconded by Mrs. Maloney, and by a vote of 7 - 0 the Board approved a request from Paul Gervasio for a 10 day childbirth leave of absence per the WTA MOA dated 5/4/2019 beginning on or about April 30, 2020; with option for full amount. 

On motion by Mr. Lee, seconded by Mrs. Maloney, and by a vote of 7 - 0 the Board approved the appointment of Matt Mcguire as Family and Consumer Science substitute teacher for the 2019 - 2020 school year; to cover the leave of Mrs. Gervasio.

On motion by Mr. Lee, seconded by Mrs. Maloney, and by a vote of 7 - 0 the Board approved the appointment of Ashley Hogan as substitute Social Studies teacher for the 2019 - 2020 school year; to cover the leave of Mr. Gervasio.

On motion by Mr. Lee, seconded by Mrs. Maloney, and by a vote of 7 - 0 the Board went into executive session at 8:25pm to discuss negotiations.  They returned to regular session at 8:31 and adjourned.

Julie Caulkins
District Clerk