D9 approves student health center, two policy requests questioned

The Aug. 12 work session of the D9 school board included more discussion, questions and answers on the proposed school based health center; the proposal for the multipurpose room at WMMS to be paid for by Club West Wrestling; an update on the new elementary school request for proposal, coaches handbook and district staff handbook, as well as four items dealing with the make up of the board meetings.

In discussion concerning a health center, Peg Crowley, CEO of the Community Health Centers, made it very clear that the centers take no stand on abortion. There was continued discussion regarding the age for parental consent. Those age 15 and under need parental consent to be seen at a clinic.

Supt. Cynda Rickert noted the clinics are staffed by professionals who  work to involve parents. “That is part of our philosophy,” noted Crowley.

The relationship between health needs and academic achievement was pointed out.

“Good counseling leads to good communication,” said Rickert.

Club West multi-purpose room at White Mountain Middle School will be plumbed for water and sewer but to begin with they will use the porta-potties currently in use for athletic events at the school.

Board Chairman Scott Grissom asked for opinions from board members on four issues dealing with the meeting format:
• Recognition of students- Grissom said he didn’t favor it. He felt it could be done at school. Board members Mary Ann Olson and Ted Dole supported  continued recognition, Jim Mannenbach said he could go either way. It was decided to continue the recognition.
• Community partnerships- Apparently the administration believes they have about exhausted groups to be recognized. Olson suggested volunteers be recognized and that seemed to be a future focus.    
• Board/cabinet site visit- Olson questioned whether these visits put too much pressure on the building principals and staff. Rickert said she would talk with principals and report back to the board.
• The last item on the board meeting format was the high school representative and it was felt the board wanted to continue that representation. 

Business Manager Randy Struckmeier said he was in contact with Clackamas ESD and with a Portland firm for assistance with a Request for Proposal (RFP) for a new elementary school. Once he obtains information from both he will report back to the school board to allow them to make a decision on the RFP  provider.

The coaches handbook was handed out. It included some changes and will be part of training for middle school and middle school coaches this week.

Mannenbach questioned why the hiring of assistant coaching positions would not be posted. Mike Remick, director of human resources, said it has been the practice for many years to allow a head coach to recommend hiring of assistants that would be compatible. “If we make changes, the union might grieve it,” said the superintendent. Mannenbach said he saw that as a plus.

“This is not a personnel handbook,” said Remick. He said the process is based on the district’s legal counsels recommendation. “I want a copy in writing of the attorney’s decision” said Mannenbach.

Remick noted he had a telephone conversation with the attorney, but would send Mannenbach a note of the conversation.

The regular school board meeting addressed the school-based health center and the Club West building.

If the board of directors wanted to consider a student health center, they had two options. Option 1 was a two year planning process. Option 2 was a one year planning process. The administration recommended Option 2. On a vote of 4-1 with Mark Bateman voting no, the school board approved Option 2 and request for proposal for an  application.

Crowley said an advisory board of parents and students will  need to be put together between now and October. Details for the clinic will be worked on  through December. She said the goal would be to start the clinic by mid-January on a trial basis, and then apply to the state for approval.

On a vote of 5-0, the board approved the addition of a multi-purpose room at WMMS, paid for by Club West Wrestling.

At the beginning of the board meeting six community members expressed concern over two of the board policies under consideration for a first reading. Board policies are introduced under a first reading. The board then approves, revises or vetoes the policy at the next meeting, which is when a second reading is held. The month between the first and second reading is considered time for review and public and/or staff input.

Former board member Teresa Hulla expressed concern over a revision on Policy BBAA Individual Board Members Authority and Responsibilities and  to the policy came from Oregon School Boards Association (OSBA)   to allow board members to gain information through attendance at district activities. According to Supt. Rickert, there has been confusion as a result of 2007 legislation but this change would mean board members would be eligible for reimbursement of expenses for attending district athletic events and activities. Hulla said this would not sit well with the general public, especially when the public pays and staff has been reduced due to the economy.

Hulla and others expressed concern over a policy initiated by Grissom that would make the high school’s official color Royal Blue and Athletic Gold (golden yellow). Other official colors will be: Royal Blue and white for Shady Cove Middle School; Scarlet Red and White for WMMS and Navy Blue and White for EPMS, which they are now, except WMMS is just red, not scarlet red. 

Official school colors will be used on the signs, banners, rosters, fliers, newsletters and all other promotional items related to the school.

School District 9’s original high school colors were purple and gold. After 18 years the colors were changed because the dark purple faded. While the high school mascot was always the Eagle, when the Ladino Cheese Factory was in operation, all around the county the Eagles were often referred to as “The Cheesemakers.”

“You would think you could find more important things,” said Lori Richardson.

Former board member Spencer Davenport cautioned the board not to micro-manage. “Let’s get the focus back on kids.”

Shaunda Whipple Cline expressed concern over the amount of money that would be spent if Policy JFCCA was implemented. She said she was especially concerned when so many employees have been riffed.

“Who did this?” asked Dole. “And how does this benefit kids?”

Grissom took credit, and said it was important to keep colors to honor the past and to show respect for the elders.

Dole chastised Grissom for a pattern of bringing a personal agenda to the board. And, he mentioned promises made by newly elected board members that are not being carried out thus far.

Annual Yearly Progress Data was presented by Tina Mondale ( a summary was reported last week). After showing a number of disappointing scores she said the district has used federal funds to hire about eight instructional coaches. She presented a chart that showed sending teachers to workshops had little positive affect in the classroom whereas specific coaching of a teacher can make a significant difference.
By Nancy Leonard
Of the Independent


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