A run down of the Nov. 19, 2019 Hernando County School Board meeting
by KATHRYN DENTATO
BROOKSVILLE, Fla, NOV. 19, 2019-
School Superintendent John Stratton called the meeting to order, explaining that he was presiding over the meeting as the school board was selecting a new chair. He introduced each board member. Stratton asked for a moment of silence and led the pledge of allegiance.
Item #4066 – Adoption of the Agenda. Stratton asked for a motion to adopt the agenda, which Gus Guadagnino made, and Jimmy Lodato seconded. The agenda was approved 5-0.
Item #4067 – Election of Chairperson. Stratton asked for nominations. Kay Hatch nominated Linda Prescott. Lodato nominated Guadagnino. Prescott nominated current Board chair Susan Duval.
After nominations were closed, Hatch asked Duval about her interest in serving another term. “Only if it’s the pleasure of the Board,” Duval replied.
Voting was taken verbally due to the number of nominees. Prescott received one vote from Hatch, as Duval abstained. Prescott voted against herself. Lodato and Guadagnino both voted no for Prescott.
Guadagnino received a vote from Lodato and himself. The other three members voted no.
In the third round, Guadagnino and Lodato voted against Duval, who received three votes in favor. Duval retained her position as chair.
Item #4068 – Election of Vice Chairperson. Duval asked for nominations. Hatch nominated Prescott. Lodato nominated Guadagnino. Each member was polled for his or her vote. The only vote against Prescott was Lodato.
The agenda order was changed slightly to accommodate a presentation by Dr. Bill Vogel from the Florida Association of District School Superintendents (FADSS). Vogel said he has been working with Stratton since he was appointed Interim Superintendent. He has been impressed with Stratton’s desire for increased community involvement and student achievement.
The certification is noted in Florida Statues. The course lasts one year. Stratton attended trainings workshops and took three exams to complete the requirements of the course. Vogel presented Stratton with the certificate.
Item #4069 – Approval of the schedule of upcoming meetings from December 2019 through November 2020. The informal meetings will continue since they are beneficial. The first Board meeting each month will convene at 5:00 pm to recognize staff and student achievements. Guadagnino moved to approve the schedule and the additional items. Lodato seconded the motion. The schedule was approved 5-0.
Item #4070 – Committee Designations. There are more than two dozen positions the board members fill, including alternates. There were not many changes from the previous year.
Guadagnino - Parent Academy Advisory Committee, Anti-Bullying Committee, CTE Advisory Committee, Hernando County Education Foundation, Value Adjustment Board (alternate), Moton School Advisory Committee, Strategic Plan Pillar (People), ESSS Advisory Committee (alternate), SunTech Advisory Committee, Insurance Committee, Legislator and Sheriff Liaison Committee (alternate)
Lodato – Legislative Committee, Value Adjustment Board, Half Cent Sales Tax Committee, two Strategic Plan Pillar (Facilities Operations), District Safe Schools Committee, Capital Funds Committee, CTE Advisory Committee (alternate), BOCC, Insurance Committee (alternate), Legislator and Sheriff Liaison Committee
Hatch – Achievement Gap Committee (alternate), Anti-Bullying Committee (alternate), Strategic Plan Pillar (Communication and Community Engagement), Planning and Growth Committee, Small School District Council Consortium (alternate), Community Center Task Force (Fox Chapel Middle School), District Safe Schools Committee (alternate), Gifted Advisory Committee (alternate), Truancy Committee (alternate), Legislative Committee (alternate)
Prescott – Small School District Council Consortium, Gifted Advisory Committee, Truancy fCommittee, ESSS Advisory Committee, Strategic Plan Pillar (Student Achievement), HCEF alternate, Achievement Gap Committee, BOCC, SunTech Advisory Committee (alternate), COE Review Team. Legislative Commitee
Duval –Staffing Plan Task Force, Calendar Committee, Planning and Growth Committee (alternate), Capital Funds Committee (alternate)
Matt Mulvaney was appointed by the School Board to serve on the Value Adjustment Board for the 2018-2019 school year. Duval asked Stratton to discuss another year’s appointment with Mulvaney.
Duval asked for a motion to approve the list of committee assignments. Guadagnino made the motion and Prescott seconded, and the motion carried unanimously.
Item #4071 – Appointment of the School Board Attorney
Prescott nominated Mrs. Nancy Alfonso, wife of the current School Board attorney Denis Alfonso. The board members laughed at this, saying Mr. Alfonso could serve as an alternate. Duval asked for a motion to approve the appointment of Mrs. Alfonso to represent and advise the school board as general counsel. Hatch made the motion, and Lodato seconded it. The motion was carried 5-0.
The organizational meeting recessed briefly to discuss matters under the Hernando County School Board Leasing Corporation.
Item #4072 – Approval of the minutes from the 11/20/18 meeting. Hatch made the motion and Prescott provided the second. The motion carried 5-0.
Item #4073 – Appointment of the School Board Chair to become Leasing Corporation President. The motion was made by Guadagnino and seconded by Hatch. The motion was approved 5-0.
Item #4074 – Appointment of the School Board Vice Chair to become Leasing Corporation Vice President. It was approved 5-0.
Item #4075 – Adjournment. Duval asked for a motion to adjourn the short annual meeting, and Guadagnino made the motion. Lodato made the second. The motion carried 5-0.
The regular School Board meeting resumed.
Item #4064 – Proclamation – The week of November 18th was recognized as the 98th Annual American Education Week. Vince La Borante, President of the Hernando Classroom Teachers Association, made the presentation. Hatch made comments celebrating the education system. Guadanino moved to approve the proclamation. Hatch seconded it. The proclamation was approved 5-0.
Minutes from the 10/22/19 meetings were approved unanimously after Lodato made the motion and Hatch seconded.
Item #4082 and 4094– These were final orders of expulsion. For each one, Hatch made the motion and Prescott seconded. Both were approved with a 5-0 vote.
Item #4094 – Consent agenda approval – There was one change to one item. Lodato moved to approve the amended consent agenda. Hatch seconded it. The amended consent agenda was approved 5-0. The market adjustments, step increases and performance pay for school district employees were among items on the consent agenda see below.
School Board members discussed items that were important to the Board. Guadagnino mentioned that Anthony Palmieri passed away. Lodato praised Stratton for his presentation to the BOCC and explained the presentation to the public. Prescott and Hatch discussed additional reasons and the impact of additional funds. Duval expressed disappointment and frustration that the BOCC did not see the same vision as the School Board.
Stratton said the unity of the school board and community are important. He encouraged citizens to reach out to the BOCC. The concession of an approximate $1,000 increase was promising, but less than what the School Board needs.
The next meeting is scheduled for 12/10/19.
Break it Down: School District Step Increases, Performance Pay and Market Adjustments
FY 2019-2020- approved Nov. 19, 2019
Hernando United School Workers Contract
Market Adjustment: additional $0.40 per hour for all HUSW members and Bus Operators will receive an additional $0.40 per hour increase.
Effective: Dec. 20, 2019 (an annualized increase based on the employee's contract start date.)
Cost: The approximate total cost of the step increase and market adjustment including salary and benefits is $1,494,828.44
Ratified by School Board: Nov. 19, 2019
School-Based Administrative Employees
Market Adjustment: 4.25%
Performance Pay: Florida Statute 1012.22 requires that school-based administrators receive a salary increase based on their evaluation rating. The recommended performance pay is for Highly Effective ratings to receive a performance increase of $100 and Effective ratings to receive a performance increase of $75.
Performance Pay and Market Adjustment cost: Approximately $214,554.74, general fund costs including salary and benefits
(These employees are not covered under a collective bargaining agreement.)
Market Adjustment: 4.25% to base salary
Market Adjustment cost: $264,813 including salary and fringes
(Employees who require access to confidential information for collective bargaining. Confidential Employees are not covered under a collective bargaining agreement.)
Market Adjustment: $0.40 per hour increase added to the base salary.
Market Adjustment and Step Increase Cost: $127,591.48 including salary and benefits
Approved by School Board: Nov. 19, 2019
Hernando County Teachers’ Association (HCTA) Contract
Market Adjustment: 4.25% increase to the base pay of all instructional staff members.
Performance Pay: The performance agreement includes Highly Effective ratings receiving a $100 increase and Effective ratings receiving a $75 increase.
Pre-K Teachers: All pre-k teachers considered to be non-qualified teachers and therefore not eligible for the State's Best and Brightest Bonus will receive the Recognition bonus based on the State's recognition requirements, each qualified pre-k teacher will receive an estimated $800 bonus.
Cost: The approximate cost of performance pay and the market adjustment is $3,877,775.85, for general funds including salary and benefits. The cost for the previous fiscal year was $2,766,782.22 The approximate cost of the Best and Brightest bonus is $278,800, for general funds including salary and fringes. The approximate cost of performance pay and market adjustment is $267,753.48, for federal funds including salary and fringes. Total cost is approximately $4,123,129.33
Ratified by School Board: Nov. 19, 2019