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November 9 Board of Education Meeting Minutes

Cohoes City School District

Board of Education Business Meeting
November 9, 2023
Cohoes Middle School, Library, 6 pm

(The Board of Education may entertain a motion to enter into an executive session subject to Board approval.)

MINUTES

The Meeting was called to Order by the President Mrs. Carey at 6:03 pm.

ROLL CALL

Present:

  • Mrs. Giller
  • Mr. Jackson
  • Mrs. Snyder
  • Mrs. Gendron
  • Mrs. Paradis
  • Mr. Jarosz
  • Mrs. Carey

Also Present:

  • Ms. Peggy O’Shea, Superintendent of Schools
  • Mr. Dan Martinelli, Assistant Superintendent
  • Mrs. Stacy Mackey, School Business Official

II. DISTRICT REPORTS

Superintendent’s Update – Ms. O’Shea followed up on the questions from the board regarding the proposed track and field components of the Capital Project. Athletic Director Jeff Huneau, was also present to discuss. She presented cost differences between an eight (8) lane and a six (6) lane track.  Mr. Huneau explained that if we went with a six (6) lane track, the district would not be allowed to host sectional events.  He also explained that with an
eight (8) lane the district could also host Colonial Council championship events. He mentioned that outside of hosting these events, having these facilities would be a way to further school spirit and pride and put “the Cohoes name out there” further. It could possibly encourage more students to participate in sports.

Ms. O’Shea also shared the existing floor plan of the Abram Lansing cafeteria, as well as two options to increase seating, the goal presented prior to the referendum.  The options included removing a wall to a small room off the cafeteria, used as a reset room.  None of these options were favorable. Ms. Mackey and Mr. Bird will be exploring different cafeteria table options to increase seating and provide staff with the ability to better navigate between
tables.

At this time the district would be able to use excess cafeteria fund balance to order new round tables, which would assist in adding seating as well as the supervision of students while they are in the cafeteria.

Mr. Martinelli shared NYS 3-8 ELA and Math Assessment data from by building and grade level and provided an i-Ready final diagnostic data. There was a noted increase in student scores on the math assessment.  Mr. Martinelli expressed the increases were due to the hard work of our teachers and students, the implementation of a new Math program, which included professional development and the monitoring process through i-Ready. He also thanked Julie Carroll, Capital Region BOCES Instructional Coach for all of her assistance.

Mr. Martinelli also shared that during the recent staff development day the review with elementary teachers on how to complete standards based report cards in Synergy went well.

Ms. O’Shea shared that elementary teachers also had districtwide grade level meetings on Election Day. These used to occur at least three times a year pre- pandemic, but stopped due to the difficulty of finding substitutes. Elementary teachers expressed the desire to continue to have grade level meetings, which Ms. O’Shea stated this could be accomplished with an additional Superintendent’s conference day or two half days which we still have available to use. She will be exploring this in the future.

Ms. O’Shea shared co-curricular activities and the number of participants to date.  She made the board aware we are still in need of an advisor for advanced robotics at CMS and Unified Sports at CHS.

Business Update – Ms. Mackey shared the Draft Reserve plan and Fund balance report.  This report will assist the district in preparing for budget season and developing the 2023-2024 budget goals.  Ms. Mackey explained that the Board would take action on this plan at the next meeting.  The financials will be posted to the district website after tonight’s meeting.  She reviewed each reserve fund and balances. She also reviewed the 2023-2024 reserve fund priorities.  Ms. Mackey is working to update the long range financial plan and budget timeline for the board’s review.

III. BOARD OF EDUCATION DISCUSSION OF AGENDA ITEMS – None

IV. COMMUNITY DISCUSSION OF AGENDA ITEMS

V. OLD BUSINESS – None

VI. REPORT FROM MEMBERS OF THE BOARD OF EDUCATION

A. THAT the Board accepts the Minutes of the Board of Education meeting of
October 25, 2023.

B. THAT the Board of Education approves a contract between the Cohoes City
School District and the ARC of Rensselaer County located at 79 102 Street, Troy, NY for transition services for Cohoes High School for the 2023-2024 school year at a rate of $ 67,103.

C. THAT the Board of Education approves the Independent Auditor’s Report dated June 30, 2023 as prepared by the firm of MMB and Company, Certified Public Accountants, and the Corrective Action Plan thereto as prepared by the School Business Official.

D. RESOLUTION AUTHORIZING PARTICIPATION IN COOPERATIVE
ENERGY PURCHASING SERVICE (NYSMEC) FOR ELECTRICITY

WHEREAS, Article 5-G of the New York State General Municipal Law
authorizes municipal corporations to enter into cooperative agreements for the performance or exercise of services, functions, powers or activities on a
cooperative or contract basis among themselves or one for the other, and

WHEREAS, Section 119-n of the General Municipal Law defines the term
“municipal corporation” for the purposes of Article 5-G as a county outside the
city of New York, a city, a town, a village, a board of cooperative educational
services, a fire district or a school district; and

WHEREAS, the Cohoes City School District (hereinafter sometimes referred to as “Participant”) is a “municipal corporation” as defined above; and

WHEREAS, this Board wishes for this municipal corporation to become or
remain a Participant pursuant to the Municipal Cooperation Agreement for
Energy Purchasing Services dated the 1st day of May 2005 (the “Agreement”),
among municipal corporations collectively identified as the New York School and Municipal Energy Consortium (“NYSMEC”) upon the terms of the Agreement and further wishes to authorize participation as an energy consumer as specified below.

NOW THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, that this Board hereby determines
that it is in the interests of the Cohoes City School District to participate in the
NYSMEC, and authorizes and directs Peggy O’Shea, Superintendent of Schools to sign the Agreement/and or the Billing Schedule and Agreement for electricity on its behalf; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that this Board authorizes the Administrative
Participant (as defined in the Agreement) to prepare, advertise, disseminate and open bids pursuant to the General Municipal Law and to award, execute and deliver binding contracts on behalf of this Board for the purchase of electricity delivered to the delivery point of the local utility distribution company for the Participant’s facility or facilities, on a firm basis, for this Participant to the lowest responsible bidder as is determined by the Administrative Participant at a price for such commodity electricity not to exceed $.0845 cents per kWh for a term of at least one year and no more than three years commencing May 1, 2024, and other terms and conditions, all as may be determined by the Administrative Participant, or to reject any or all such bids; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that this Participant agrees to advertise said bid
as may be directed by the Administrative Participant; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that the officers and employees of this Participant are authorized to execute such other confirming agreements,
certificates and other documents and take such other actions as may be necessary or appropriate to carry out the intent of this resolution.

This Resolution shall take effect immediately.

E. RESOLUTION AUTHORIZING PARTICIPATION IN COOPERATIVE
ENERGY PURCHASING SERVICE (NYSMEC) FOR NATURAL GAS

WHEREAS, Article 5-G of the New York State General Municipal Law
authorizes municipal corporations to enter into cooperative agreements for the performance or exercise of services, functions, powers or activities on a
cooperative or contract basis among themselves or one for the other, and

WHEREAS, Section 119-n of the General Municipal Law defines the term
“municipal corporation” for the purposes of Article 5-G as a county outside the
city of New York, a city, a town, a village, a board of cooperative educational
services, a fire district or a school district; and

WHEREAS, the Cohoes City School District (hereinafter sometimes referred to “as Participant” is a municipal corporation” as defined above; and

WHEREAS, this Board wishes for this municipal corporation to become or
remain a Participant pursuant to the Municipal Cooperation Agreement for
Energy Purchasing Services dated the 1st day of May, 2005 (the “Agreement”), among municipal corporations collectively identified as the New York School and Municipal Energy Consortium (“NYSMEC”) upon the terms of the Agreement and further wishes to authorize participation as an energy consumer as specified below.

NOW THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, that this Board hereby determines
that it is in the interests of the Cohoes City School District to participate in the
NYSMEC, and authorizes and directs Peggy O’Shea, Superintendent of Schools to sign the Agreement/and or the Billing Schedule and Agreement for natural gas on its behalf; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that this Board authorizes the Administrative
Participant (as defined in the Agreement) to prepare, advertise, disseminate and open bids pursuant to the General Municipal Law and to award, execute and deliver binding contracts on behalf of this Board for the purchase of natural gas delivered to the city gate of the local utility distribution company for the Participant’s facility or facilities, on a firm basis, for this Participant to the lowest responsible bidder as is determined by the Administrative Participant at a price for such commodity natural gas not to exceed $.656 cents per therm for a term of at least one year and no more than three years commencing May 1, 2024, and other terms and conditions, all as may be determined by the Administrative Participant, or to reject any or all such bids; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that this Participant agrees to advertise said bid
as may be directed by the Administrative Participant; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that the officers and employees of this Participant are authorized to execute such other confirming agreements,
certificates and other documents and take such other actions as may be necessary or appropriate to carry out the intent of this resolution.

This Resolution shall take effect immediately.

VII. RECOMMENDATIONS FROM THE SUPERINTENDENT – PERSONNEL

Instructional

A. THAT the Board of Education approve the following student teacher placements from the following school (unpaid):

The College of St. Rose
March 11, 2024 – May 8, 2024
Megan Washock with Crystal Roberts at Harmony Hill Elementary school

B. THAT the Board of Education appoints the following individuals to the Substitute Teacher and Tutor list:

  • Megherian, Lori
  • Charnley, Nicholas
  • Otero, Antonio
  • Rumsey, Matthew
  • Schofield, Jonathan

Effective: November 10, 2023

C. THAT the Board of Education amend item VII (G) of the October 25, 2023
Agenda to read as follows:

BE IT RESOLVED THAT the Board of Education of the Cohoes City School
District appoints Stacey Hanley to a four – year probationary term in the tenure
area of Special Education, effective November 27, 2023 and expiring on
November 26, 2027. November 6, 2023 and expiring on November 5, 2027.
Ms. Hanley holds Professional Certifications in the areas of Students With
Disabilities (Grades 1-6) and Childhood Education (Grades 1-6).

Stacey Hanley

  • Position: 1.0 FTE Special Education Teacher (AL)
  • Certification: Students With Disabilities (Grades 1-6)
  • Tenure Area: Special Education
  • Effective Date: November 27, 2023 November 6, 2023
  • Tenure Date: November 26, 2027 November 5, 2027
  • Salary: Step 10 of the current CTA contract

D. BE IT RESOLVED THAT the Board of Education of the Cohoes City School
District appoints Jordan Gregory to a four – year probationary term in the tenure area of Elementary, (grant funded) effective November 13, 2023 and expiring on November 13, 2027. Ms. Gregory holds Initial Certification in the area of Childhood Education (Grades 1-6).

Jordan Gregory

  • Position: 1.0 FTE Elementary Teacher (CMS)
  • Certification: Childhood Education (Grades 1-6)
  • Tenure: Area Elementary
  • Effective Date: November 13, 2023
  • Tenure Date:  November 12, 2027
  • Salary: Step 1 of the current CTA contract (grant funded)

E. BE IT RESOLVED THAT the Board of Education of the Cohoes City School
District appoints William Sheldon to a three – year probationary term in the tenure area of Business Education – general, effective November 13, 2023 and expiring on November 12, 2026. Mr. Sheldon holds Professional Certification in the areas of Business and Marketing and Social Studies 7-12.

William Sheldon

  • Position: 1.0 FTE Business Teacher (CMS)
  • Certification: Business and Marketing and Social Studies 7-12
  • Tenure Area: Business Education – general
  • Effective Date: November 27, 2023
  • Tenure Date: November 26, 2026
  • Salary:  Step 18 of the current CTA contract

Non-Instructional

F. THAT the Board of Education accepts the termination of probationary
employment of Joclynn O’Brien from her position as Teacher Aide (AL).
Effective: November 3, 2023

G. BE IT RESOLVED THAT the Board of Education of the Cohoes City School
District hereby appoints Richard Hebert to the position of full-time Cleaner,
subject to the rules of the Cohoes Civil Service Commission, such appointment is a probationary appointment.

Richard Hebert

  • Position: 1.0 FTE Cleaner (VS)
  • Effective Date: November 13, 2023
  • Probation Period: May 12, 2024
  • Salary: As per current CSEA contract

H. BE IT RESOLVED THAT the Board of Education of the Cohoes City School
District hereby appoints Thyrone Perdue to the position of full time Campus
Safety Monitor, subject to the rules of the Cohoes Civil Service Commission,
such appointment is a probationary appointment.

Thyrone Perdue

  • Position: 1.0 FTE Campus Safety Monitor (CMS)
  • Effective Date: November 6, 2023
  • Probation Period: May 5, 2024
  • Salary: As per current CSEA contract

I. BE IT RESOLVED THAT the Board of Education of the Cohoes City School
District hereby appoints Caitlin Bellenoit to the position of Part-Time Teacher
Aide subject to the rules of the Cohoes Civil Service Commission, such
appointment is a temporary appointment.

Caitlin Bellenoit

  • Position: Part-Time Aide (VSGS)
  • Effective Date: November 13, 2023 through June 30, 2024
  • Salary: $14.20 per hour

J. THAT the Board of Education approve the holiday pay for the following part-
time employees for the 2023-2024 school year:

Charity Deters-Rasmussen –  $266.25
Bernadette Glynn – $300.00
Crystal Kelly – $281.25
Michelle Lake – $266.25
Kim Schreck  – $266.25
Gail Friedman  – $285.94
Lisa Hoefer  – $266.25
Patricia Kelly  – $266.25
Lori LaMere  – $285.94
Kailey McCarthy  – $266.25
Aprille Overocker  – $266.25
Teresa Slater  – $266.25
Brigid Waddell  – $281.25
Maureen Finnen  – $281.25
Brenna Wood – $266.25
Sheila Farrigan – $266.25
Paula Ahearn – $266.25
Tracy Darwak – $266.25

K. BE IT RESOLVED that the Board of Education of the Cohoes City School
District hereby extends the employment of Raychel Marcil to June 30, 2027,
amends the employment agreement dated December 14, 2022 and authorizes the Board President to execute said addendum and authorizes payment in accordance therewith.

ADDENDA:

VII. RECOMMENDATIONS FROM SUPERINTEDENT – PERSONNEL:

Instructional

L. THAT the Board of Education grant tenure to the following individuals in the
subject area listed:

Mr. Corey Prairie (Cohoes High School) – School Psychologist
Effective: November 3, 2023

Ms. Jillian Egnaczyk (Van Schaick Grade School) – Speech – remedial
Effective: November 23, 2023

Non-Instructional

M. BE IT RESOLVED THAT the Board of Education of the Cohoes City School
District hereby appoints Andreai Koltun to the position of full time Teacher Aide, subject to the rules of the Cohoes Civil Service Commission, such appointment is a probationary appointment.

Andreai Koltun

  • Position: 1.0 FTE Teacher Aide (HHS)
  • Effective Date: November 13, 2023
  • Probation Period: May 12, 2024
  • Salary: Entry level per current CSEA contract

DESIGNATION OF CONSENT AGENDA: THAT the Board of Education adopts the following resolutions of the November 9, 2023 agenda

VI (A-E) and VII (A-M)

  • Moved by: Mr. Jarosz
  • Second by: Mrs. Gendron
  • All voted “Aye”
  • Motion carried: 7-0

VIII. RECOMMENDATIONS FROM THE SUPERINTENDENT – BUSINESS/FINANCE

IX. FINANCIAL REPORTS (Recommended by the Superintendent)

A. I recommend that the following reports be accepted by the Board of Education:

  • Warrants- N/A
  • Budget Transfers – N/A
  • Budget Status Report – N/A
  • Revenue Status Report – N/A
  • Bank Reconciliation Report –N/A
  • Internal Claims Audit Report – N/A

X. INFORMATION AND CONSIDERATION -None.

XI. COMMENTS FROM BOARD OF EDUCATION MEMBERS

Mr. Jarosz thanked Mr. Stapleton for the progress of the trailer and dirt at the high school.  Mrs. Paradis stated there was low parent participation at the recent “Hidden Dangers” presentation and encouraged all parents to attend if the program becomes available in the future.

XII. QUESTIONS AND STATEMENTS FROM AUDIENCE

Alicia Abdul of Walnut Street read a statement regarding the wrestling merger with Watervliet.  Ms. Carey thanked her for coming to tonight’s meeting and Ms. O’Shea stated she would be reaching out to her in the near future.

Mrs. Flatow, CMS Social Worker thanked the community for their support during the recent silent auction.  The auction raised over $2,400 for our Holiday Hope program which allows parents to select holiday gifts. She also thanked the Sons of American Legion post in Halfmoon for their continued generosity.

XIII. BOARD POLICY REVIEW – None

XIV. DATES FOR FUTURE MEETINGS

November 29, 2023 – WORKSHOP-Closed Meeting – Cohoes Middle School at 6 PM
December 13, 2023 – Cohoes Middle School – Library at 6 PM

XV. ADJOURNMENT

MOTION to enter to Executive Session at 7:24 pm.
To discuss the Superintendent’s contract and to discuss a pending litigation.

  • Moved by: Mrs. Gendron
  • Second by: Mrs. Giller
  • All voted “Aye”
  • Motion carried: 7-0

MOTION: To adjourn at 7:41 pm

  • Moved by: Mr. Jarosz
  • Second by: Mrs. Gendron
  • All voted “Aye”
  • Motion carried: 7-0
Preparing our students for success in tomorrow’s world.

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