Minutes May 3, 2011


Chappaqua, New York



May 3, 2011



8:15 p.m.



Horace Greeley High School Commons



Board of Education
Janet Benton, President
Gregg Bresner, Vice President
Alyson Kiesel
Jeffrey Mester
Randall Katchis


Staff Members

Mr. John Chambers, Interim Superintendent

Dr. Lyn McKay, Deputy Superintendent for Curriculum and Instruction

Mr. John Chow, Assistant Superintendent for Business

Theresa Markley, District Clerk / Adm. Asst. to Superintendent


Visitors Present:

Representatives of the Chappaqua PTA, school PTAs, building administrators, faculty, and other interested citizens.


President Janet Benton convened the public session at 6:45p.m. and moved to enter into Executive Session for the purpose of negotiations (employee contracts) personnel, and legal issue.

At 8:22 p.m. Jeffrey Mester moved to adjourn the Executive Session and reconvene the public session. Alyson Kiesel seconded. The motion passed unanimously.

President Benton welcomed the community. She marked the passing of Assistant Superintendent for Human Resources Tom Cardellichio on April 12. She gave a sincere and heartfelt tribute to Tom's 35 years of service with the district from his years as Bell Middle School Principal to the past 14 years in Human Resources. Tom mentored, coached, and trained teachers, administrators, board of education members and was a close advisor to four superintendents. His honesty and straightforward manner made him the perfect person as the mediator of delicate situations. He had a unique ability to cut through to the core of the matter. He worked with a wry sense of humor and commitment to what was best for kids.

President Benton introduced Pamela Thornton, Director of the Chappaqua Library to present the library budget.


  • Public Hearing - Library Budget

    Ms. Thornton explained that she worked with her board to begin collecting information last fall to determine the most important materials and services to make available to the community in light of the current economic situation. Her biggest challenge this year was snow removal costs and retirement benefits. She noted that over 220,000 visitors came in to the library last year. Of the 74 employees, 20 are full time and individuals contribute 25% towards healthcare. She reduced employee hours to help meet operating costs. Libraries are not allowed to actively fund raise, but they can accept donations. The proposed budget is $2,766,724 and reflects an increase of 1.88%, coincidentally the same percentage as the school district. This represents a tax increase of 3.27% for New Castle and a -5.80% decrease for Mt. Pleasant.

  • Public Hearing - School Budget

    Interim Superintendent John Chambers introduced John Chow to present a summary of the proposed 2011-12 budget. The proposed budget is $111,448,488 or 1.88%, which reflects $2,057,140 increase over the 2010-11 budget.

    Mr. Chow expressed his appreciation for all the input from the various constituencies. He noted the board receives monthly revenue and expenditure statements that are accepted at board meetings and are available for the public. He showed comparison detail of expenditures and revenues. He noted the tax levy increased by less than one percent (0.83%) and tax rates (as distinguished from tax levy) estimated at increase of 2.11% for New Castle; decrease of 6.85% for Mt. Pleasant.

    Board members voiced support for the budget and asked for comments.

  • New Castle Sustainability Advisory Board

    Jeffrey Mester, liaison for the Green Committee, introduced representatives from the New Castle Sustainability Advisory Board. Their mission is to provide advice and guidance to the town to reflect environmental, economic and social impact now and in the future.

    Dr. Beth Sauerhaft, and students Ethan Fuirst and Molly Pickel came before the Green Committee in April to discuss mutual areas of concern and opportunities for collaboration with the school district reduce the carbon footprint. Dr. Sauerhaft presented an action registry of the activities they supported during the past year such as a solid waste guide draft, recycling information, green business plans, and composting workshops. Since 41% of greenhouse gases come from transportation, they worked with Chappaqua Transportation and the PTA to propose no idling at bus stops and increase bus ridership. They propose a Take the Bus to School Week in May to encourage ridership and to sweeten the deal, an ice cream reward for students at the end of the week.

Questions and Comments on topics.


Information Business Affairs


President's Report


Extension of filing period for library candidate to May 5, 2011.

President Benton noted the extension of the filing period due to library candidate's withdrawal.


Alyson Kiesel reported on the Chappaqua School Foundation's very successful gala at The Grand Prix in Mt. Kisco. It was well attended by the community. Many students were in attendance and demonstrated how they had integrated CSF grants into their studies. The ability to see the grants in action is highly impressive and kept the event focused on the direct and meaningful impact that CSF grants have on our students.


John Chambers noted the Seven Bridges fundraiser for Japanese earthquake relief was held over the weekend. Administrators volunteered to serve as parking attendants for the function to reduce costs. Mr. Chambers thanked the students who initiated the project.


Superintendent's Report


Search Process: Assistant Superintendent for Curriculum and Instruction

Deputy Superintendent Lyn McKay reported 127 applications were received and that the search was closed on April 27. An update is posted on the website. Parent groups, support staff, administrators, and teachers are involved in the preliminary interview process. A recommendation will be made on June 1.


HGHS Graduation 2011

Principal Andrew Selesnick reported that the owners of Chappaqua Crossing, formerly Readers' Digest, will not allow parking on their property this year. Other options were researched but determined to be less desirable. Graduation will be held at Greeley, but limitations on parking with shuttle service from satellite areas may be instituted. Details have to be worked out.


Senior Year Experience Pilot Program

Students participating in the new Senior Experience pilot program will report on their internships and activities on June 16, 5:00 - 7:00 p.m. in the Academic Commons.

Question and Comments on Report Items





Alyson Kiesel moved to adopt the minutes, as amended,


Minutes of March 29, 2011


Minutes of April 5, 2011

Gregg Bresner. The motion passed unanimously.


Recommended Action: Personnel

Interim Superintendent John Chambers recommended that items 4.1 and 4.2 be approved.




"BE IT RESOLVED that, the Board of Education hereby authorizes the attached Agreements for Services for the individuals and agencies listed below effective for the 2010/2011 school year, or earlier at the discretion of the Board of Education":

Interim Healthcare Staffing,

Judy Bernstein,

Sandra Kowalski, and

Wendy Phelps.

Request for Discretionary Leave of Absence:

Mr. David Boniello, Teacher of Physical Education, Douglas Grafflin Elementary School, effective May 26, 2011 through June 10, 2011.

Ms. Jessica Moschetti, Teaching Assistant, Horace Greeley High School, effective June 16, 2011 through June 20, 2011.




Anthony Castaneda - Substitute Teacher Aide at Douglas Grafflin Elementary School, 20.00 hours per week, effective May 2, 2011. His salary will be $14.00 per hour.

Resignation for the Purpose of Retirement:

Lois Sommer - Typist/School Monitor at Robert E. Bell Middle School, retiring effective June 29, 2011.


BE IT RESOLVED that, the Board of Education hereby increases the hours of Debra Love, Teacher Aide at Douglas Grafflin Elementary School to 35 hour per week, effective, May 2, 2011 through June 30, 2011.

BE IT RESOLVED that, the Board of Education hereby increases the hours of Josephine Puma, Teacher Aide at Douglas Grafflin Elementary School from 23.75 per week to 31.25 hours per week, effective May 2, 2011 through June 30, 2011. Effective July 1, 2011, this appointment will revert back to 23.75 hours per week.

BE IT RESOLVED that, the Board of Education hereby appoints the individual listed below as a per diem clerical substitute to be employed on an "as needed" basis at the Education Center, effective May 4, 2011:

Paula Iamiceli

Randall Katchis moved to accept the recommendations. Alyson Kiesel seconded. The motion passed unanimously.


Recommended Action: Other


Alyson Kiesel moved to approve CSE summaries reported to the Board on April 29, 2011. Randall Katchis seconded. The motion passed unanimously.


Tax Anticipation Note Resolution of Chappaqua Central School District, New York, adopted May 3, 2011, authorizing the issuance of note not to exceed $8,000,000 Tax Anticipation Notes in anticipation of the receipt of taxes to be levied for the fiscal year ending June 30, 2012. Jeffrey Mester offered the following, resolution,

"Be it Resolved, as follows:

Section 1. Tax Anticipation Notes (herein called "Notes") of Chappaqua Central School District, in the County of Westchester, New York (herein called "District"), in the principal amount of not to exceed $8,000,000, and any notes in renewal thereof, are hereby authorized to be issued pursuant to the provisions of Sections 24.00 and 39.00 of the Local Finance Law, constituting Chapter 33-a of the Consolidated Laws of the State of New York (herein called "Law").

Section 2. The following additional matters are hereby determined and declared:


The Notes shall be issued in anticipation of the collection of real estate taxes to be levied for school purposes for the fiscal year commencing July 1, 2011 and ending June 30, 2012, and the proceeds of the Notes shall be used only for the purposes for which said taxes are levied.


The Notes shall mature within the period of one year from the date of their issuance.


The Notes are not issued in renewal of other notes.


The total amount of such taxes remains uncollected at the date of adoption of this resolution.

Section 3. The Notes hereby authorized shall contain the recital of validity prescribed by Section 52.00 of the Law and shall be general obligations of the District, and the faith and credit of the District are hereby pledged to the punctual payment of the principal of and interest on the Notes and unless the Notes are otherwise paid or payment provided for, an amount sufficient for such payment shall be inserted in the budget of the District and a tax sufficient to provide for the payment thereof shall be levied and collected.

Section 4. Subject to the provisions of this resolution and the Law, and pursuant to Sections 50.00, 56.00, 60.00 and 61.00 of the Law, the power to sell and issue the Notes authorized pursuant hereto, or any renewals thereof, and to determine the terms, form and contents, including the manner of execution, of such Notes, and to execute arbitrage certifications relative thereto, is hereby delegated to the President of the Board of Education, the chief fiscal officer of the District.

Section 5. The Notes shall be executed in the name of the District by the manual signature of the President of the Board of Education, the Vice President of the Board of Education, the District Treasurer, the District Clerk, or such other officer of the District as shall be designated by the chief fiscal officer of the District, and shall have the corporate seal of the District impressed or imprinted thereon which corporate seal may be attested by the manual signature of the District Clerk.

Section 6. This resolution shall take effect immediately.

Randall Katchis seconded. The motion passed unanimously.



Jeffrey Mester moved to appoint personnel for May 17, 2011 election/budget vote. Alyson Kiesel seconded. The motion passed unanimously.


Jeffrey Mester moved to approve a renewal of the annual agreement for Blackboard effective May 17, 2011, maintaining a 0% increase, at a rate of $18,600 for the school year 2011-2012. Gregg Bresner seconded. The motion passed unanimously.





Jeffrey Mester moved to accept and/or approve the following items. Randall Katchis seconded. The motion passed unanimously.


Central Treasurer's Quarterly Report - Team Accounts - March 31, 2011


Central Treasurer's Quarterly Report - Extraclassroom Activity Accounts - March 31, 2011


Treasurer's Report - March 2011


Bid #856 - Masonry, Site Work and Asphalt Services - reject and rebid.


Budget transfer $260,000 to increase appropriation for electric utility expense (anticipated savings not achieved because of delay in energy project)

Questions and Comments


President Benton gave Notice of Future Meetings -

Tuesday, May 17, 2011 - School Budget Vote and Election at Horace Greeley High School Gym, 7:00 a.m. - 9:00 p.m.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011 at Horace Greeley High School - 8:15 p.m.


Tenured Teacher Recognition



At 9:55 p.m. President Benton asked for a motion to adjourn the meeting. Jeffrey Mester so moved. Randall Katchis seconded. The motion passed unanimously.

Respectfully submitted,

Theresa M. Markley, District Clerk / Admin. Asst. To Superintendent

Janet Benton, Board President