Minutes March 20, 2013


Chappaqua, New York



March 20, 2013



8:30 p.m.



Horace Greeley High School



Board of Education
Victoria Tipp, President
Alyson Gardner Kiesel, Vice President
Karen Visser
Randall Katchis
Jeffrey Mester


Staff Members

Dr. Lyn McKay, Superintendent

Mr. Eric Byrne, Assistant Superintendent for Curriculum

Mr. Andrew Selesnick, Assistant Superintendent for Leadership, 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 Tipp called the meeting to order at 6:30 p.m. Karen Visser moved to enter into Executive Session for the purpose of discussion of labor negotiations, contracts, and a legal settlement. Randall Katchis seconded. The motion passed unanimously. Jeffrey Mester moved to adjourn the executive session. Karen Visser seconded. The motion passed unanimously.

Karen Visser moved to reconvene the public session at 8:27 p.m. Randall Katchis seconded. The motion passed unanimously.

President Tipp welcomed the community, students, and parents and turned the introduction of presentations and a special announcement to Superintendent Dr. Lyn McKay.

Dr. McKay announced that negotiations with the Chappaqua Administrators' Association (CAA) has culminated in a two-year Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) for 2013-15 and explained the details.

The administrators have ratified the MOA that is similar to the teachers' contract - 1.7% increase in salary for each of two years, health insurance Increase to 16% and 17% respectively for each year. She noted her appreciation for the administrators stepping up and recommended the board ratify the agreement. President Tipp congratulated and thanked the administrators for their work to serve the greater good for the entire district. She thanked co-presidents of the CAA, Jim Skoog and Martin Fitzgerald for their leadership and commitment to the district. She also thanked Lyn McKay, Andrew Selesnick and John Chow for their continued work on behalf of the district. (Item 5.2 ratification by board)


Technology / Operation Maintenance / Non-instructional / Fund Balance

Darleen Nicolosi, Director

Ms. Nicolosi explained there are three components of the technology budget for 2013-14: instructional technology, data management, and operational infrastructure. She explained the components and integral parts including the support structure in each building. The operational structure is maintained by four technicians. She explained the relationship of the budget to the strategic questions. Ms. Nicolosi explained the core challenge we face with shifts in the knowledge and skills society value and the information technologies. The digital age learning is reshaping each of these and changing how we learn. She explained how we execute the strategic vision using several of these instructional technologies for performance-based authentic tasks with the creation of digital media. Examples of cloud based computing are: My Big Campus, Office 365, Google Domain; and noted the Harvard partnership with Chris Dede that utilizes virtual learning.

Ms. Nicolosi explained the use of database Integration to create a database where all of our evaluative information can be stored safely in a secure environment. The district has been developing an electronic system for the past year. When a principal evaluates s teacher, the points for the evaluation is entered into our database and then sent in a state-defined format to the state.

In the same way, student competencies are entered into a database that allows us to track the data to follow a student's progress through the K-12 system, which can be shared with the student to determine weaknesses and strengths. There is support and training for our teachers to give them the tools to increase effectiveness. Our webmasters work with teachers to enhance our web presence. This summer work will be progressing to create teacher pages for everyone.

Ms. Nicolosi reviewed the computer hardware inventory and by reallocating resources, there will not be a new contract this year. There is an increased use of iPads for next year for special education, physical education, and a pilot program in LIFE school to show how it increases teaching and learning. Apple staff developers worked with our teams and successfully integrated the iPads into the program.

Proposed budget -- minimal increase of less than $10,000 or .47% , while still advancing programs and services.

Operations Maintenance
Joe Gramando, Director of Facilities

Mr. Gramando stated the mission is to create a healthy and safe environment for students and staff and to provide the best level of care possible to buildings and grounds.

Mr. Gramando outlines the goals of the department to maintain facilities through preventive maintenance; continue to improve safety and security; support "green" products and technology as much as possible; train staff to further increase efficiency and safety.

The building and grounds proposed budget for 2013-14 reflects a reduction of 1.74% or $5,851,899. He noted that security issues have increased costs for next year.

The maintenance plan includes everything in the five year plan. The energy performance contract covered many items that would have required a bond. The district has the best boilers with a electronic computerized control system. Solar panels on Horace Greeley and Seven Bridges will heat the water for both schools. All lighting improvements have been completed and an immediate cost savings has been obtained. The Energy Performance Contract has allowed us to complete $12 million dollars worth of projects. There is also an educational component to this contract. The parking lot lights will be powered from solar panels installed on the roofs of Grafflin and Westorchard during the summer.

Proposed non-salary expenditures are decreased by $24,305. Staff are terrific people who work very hard to maintain the buildings, further cuts would reduce services. Positions have been decreased due to attrition and total staff has been reduced in the past four years by nine FTE, which is 15.2% of the department staff.

Non-instructional and Fund Balance
John Chow, Assistant Superintendent for Business

Mr. Chow did not go over line by line, but noted the general items. There are four general categories -- general support, transportation, community services, undistributed and he explained the breakdown under each category. A few key points included a note that the transportation contract was entered into 1986 and the only increase is based on CPI. Chappaqua Transportation is much lower than neighboring districts. The Joint benefit fund is contractual - the difference between it and health insurance.

Mr. Chow proposed to appropriate $2.75 million of reserve funds. The district must have enough money to keep going without cutting programs until the economy improves. His recommendation is less than previous years, but he remarked that currently $8M of the tax certiorari claims are possible outstanding items. Discussion ensued regarding the reserve funds and how much should be used to offset budget.




President's Report


Legislative Action Report

Karen Visser attended a legislative forum on February 28 sponsored by Westchester Putnam School Boards Association (WPSBA). Legislators were invited to round table discussion with representatives of each district to discuss fiscal issues, lack of meaningful mandate relief, 2% tax cap, Triborough amendment,and pensions. Ms. Visser came away very angry. There was a lot of energy about Triborough, pensions, but governor has already said that nothing was going to be done.

President Tipp also attended legislative action group that seemed to impart a lack of enthusiasm on the part of legislators to look at mandate relief. She noted there are about 13 districts in the state who will claim insolvency in the next year.


Superintendent's Report

Questions and Comments

We welcome public inquiries, and in respect for each other's time, we ask that you limit your inquiry to three minutes. Board members may be contacted via email or phone.






Recommended Action: Personnel

Dr. McKay made the following recommendations.




"BE IT RESOLVED that, the Board of Education hereby appoints the individuals listed as per diem substitute teachers to be employed on an "as needed" basis":

Madison Martineau.


"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 2012/2013 school year, or earlier at the discretion of the Board of Education":

Andrea Frusciante,

Tore Heskestad,

Elizabeth Scroope, and

Wendy Seaver.

Request for Discretionary Leave of Absence:

Ms. Eileen McGaghran-Candela, Teacher of Social Studies, Horace Greeley High School, effective March 11, 2013 through March 21, 2013.

Request for Extension of Parental Leave of Absence:

Ms. Deborah Logan, Teacher of Elementary Education, Douglas Grafflin Elementary School, effective September 1, 2013 through June 30, 2014.


Ms. Lindsay White, Teaching Assistant, Horace Greeley High School, effective March 22, 2013.

Ms. Jillian Durante, Teaching Assistant, Horace Greeley High School, effective March 25, 2013.

Appointment: Coaching

Mr. Christopher Moljo, 9th Grade Boys' Lacrosse, Horace Greeley High School, effective March 25, 2013 through June 7, 2013 (or earlier at the discretion of the Board of Education), Step 1, $4,428.

Karen Visser moved to accept the recommendations. Randall Katchis seconded. The motion passed unanimously.



Dr. McKay made the following recommendations:


BE IT RESOLVED that, the Board of Education hereby grants a leave of absence, without pay, to Colleen R. Wilson - Teacher Aide at Roaring Brook Elementary School from Wednesday, April 17, 2013 (half day) through Friday, April 19, 2013.

Randall Katchis moved to approve the recommendations. Karen Visser seconded. The motion passed unanimously.


Recommended Action: Other


Karen Visser moved to approve the CSE Summaries reported to the Board on March 20, 2013 with one exception, 60056. Randall Katchis seconded. The motion passed unanimously.


Alyson Kiesel offered the following resolution,

"BE IT RESOLVED, that the Board hereby ratifies the provisions of the Memorandum of Agreement executed by the negotiating teams for the District and the Chappaqua Administrators' Association dated March 14, 2013 and authorizes the expenditure of those monies necessary to implement the provisions of the 2013-2015 CAA Collectively Negotiated Agreement."

Karen Visser seconded. The motion passed unanimously.






Randall Katchis moved to accept the Treasurer's Report - February 2013. Jeffrey Mester seconded. The motion passed unanimously.


President Tipp gave Notice of Future Meetings -

Wednesday, April 3, 2013 at Horace Greeley High School

8:15 p.m. - Board meeting/work session


Revenue / Tax Rates / Contingency


Adjournment - Jeffrey Mester moved to adjourn. Victoria Tipp seconded. The motion passed unanimously. Meeting adjourned at 11:40 p.m.

Respectfully submitted,

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

Victoria Tipp, Board President