Board Briefs

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MARCH 2020 BOARD BRIEF
STEEL VALLEY SCHOOL DISTRICT
 

Memorial Books

The School Board acknowledged the passing of Elizabeth Stano, mother of Regina Takos, Park librarian and middle school support teacher, and Michael Takos, Barrett Paraprofessional; Herbert P. Vickers, father of Timothy Vickers, high school teacher; Kenneth B. Marsh, great uncle of Edward Tozzi, middle school teacher; Patricia L. Glinka, mother-in-law of Kimberly Glinka, speech and language teacher; Thomas Hartley, brother-in-law of Dr. Lori Kenavey, instructional resource teacher at Park School; John W. Smart, former secondary English teacher and former Steel Valley School Director 1989-2000 and husband of Carole Smart, retired third grade teacher; Hugh R. Scott, Jr., father of Mariann Reilly, high school teacher; and Andrew M. Goydoscik, father of Krystal Goydoscik-Gibbs, success coach.  It was moved by Mr. Rojtas and seconded by Mr. Colasante to place appropriate books into the school libraries in their memory. 

Board President’s Report

Mr. Bulger, thanked the community members for watching the meeting on Facebook this evening.  This is a unique time in which we must follow social distancing.  However, the district had to shut down Campbell Field to keep people away who were not social distancing.  We wanted to keep it open, but there were 30-40 people at the field today. 

He announced that the Governor signed Senate Bill 751, which waives the requirement for schools to be in session at least 180 days, increases eligible Flexible Instructional Days, provides continuity of education plans, ensures school employees are paid during the closure, ensures no reduction of subsidies, and provides the Secretary of Education with the authority to waive student teacher and standardized assessments. The Department of Education did already announce the cancellation of all state standardized tests for this school year. Mr. Bulger knows that Steel Valley is doing its best. All administrators, teachers and Board members are available by email.  We will get through this together. 

Superintendent’s Report

Mr. Wehrer stated that the Food Service workers have been distributing meals for students. During the first week of lunch distribution, 300 meal bags were distributed per day.  Over 400 lunches were distributed per building during the second week.  We have a nutritious hot lunch option each day. Every Friday the Salvation Army is partnering with us and distributing additional food items. He advised the community to listen to the Alert Now messages, watch Facebook posts and check the Steel Valley website www.steelvalleysd.org.  We will be keeping our families informed.

The Flexible Instructional Day packets #3, #4 and #5 are to be used on April 1, 2 and 3.  The iPads will be distributed to elementary students next week.  Monday, April 6, will be the first full day of remote learning for all students. He added to have patience with the remote learning.  Mr. Wehrer noted that there is an equity issue with available Internet services, and he wants to work with families to help their children.

There will be no remote learning during spring break days—April 9, 10 and 13.  Food distribution will be happening on Thursday and Monday. There will be no food distribution on Friday, April 10. 

He added to take care of yourselves, your families and your neighbors. Continue to practice the social distancing guidelines.  We will come through this.

Mr. Bulger thanked the food service staff for preparing and distributing meals to our children. Thanks to the teachers who have volunteered to distribute the meals.

Director of Pupil Personnel and Special Services’ Report

Mrs. Borges reported that special education services would continue to be provided, such as, IEPs will be conducted via ZOOM meetings.  She asked parents to share any updated phone numbers with her office.  

Additional services available to families are being shared on the Steel Valley website.  Our Success Coaches are continuing services for our students via virtual meetings. 

Director of Academics, Information & Technology’s Report

Mr. Colebank reported that the iPad distribution to elementary students K-5 would be conducted at Barrett and Park Schools.  The schedule can be found on the Steel Valley website.  The district is providing an iPad, charging block, new ear buds and a letter, which includes the student’s email address and password plus directions on how to use Google Classroom.  Families will receive an Alert Now message, and all this information can be found on the Steel Valley website under the COVID-19 link.

Most secondary students have their iPads at home, but if an iPad is at school, please contact the principal to make arrangements to pick it up.  An Alert Now message will be going out to secondary (grades 6-12) families. Report cards are being distributed next week.  Included with report cards will be the student’s email and password.  You may contact Mr. Colebank at 412-464-3600 ext. 1555 if you need assistance. 

Solicitor’s Report

The Board suspended any and all policies requiring an in-person quorum for Board meetings until further notice and to permit all Board members to be considered present and able to participate in all meetings via teleconference. 

Meeting Minutes

The Board approved the following meeting minutes:

  • February 24, 2020 worksession meeting
  • February 27, 2020 regular meeting

Financial Management

The Board adopted a resolution recognizing Coyleen Steele as a Friend of Steel Valley in honor of her distinguished service on the Board of School Directors. Financial Management The Board approved the following financial items: 

  • General Fund invoices for March 2020 in the amount of $355,719.45
  • General Fund hand checks for February 2020 in the amount of $835,365.31
  • General Fund Revenue Report for February 2020
  • General Fund Expenditure Report for February 2020
  • General Fund Balance Sheet for February 2020
  • Food Service invoices for February 2020 in the amount of $37,555.10
  • Food Service Revenue Report for February 2020
  • Food Service Expenditure Report for February 2020
  • Food Service Balance Sheet for February 2020
  • Payroll Funding Transfers for February 2020
  • High School Student Activities Balance Sheet and Disbursement Report for February 2020
  • External Groups Balance Sheet and Disbursement Report for February 2020
  • Middle School Activities Balance Sheet and Disbursement Report for February 2020
  • Athletics Fund Balance Sheet and Disbursement Report for February 2020
  • Kudravy Architects, LLC, in the amount of $19,058.00 for the professional architectural services rendered on the Steel Valley High School/Middle School HVAC upgrades, and approved BDA Engineering, Inc., for phase III completion of services in the amount of$32,450.00.  The funds will be paid out of the 2019 Capital Project Fund.
  • Exonerated the Boroughs of Munhall, Homestead and West Homestead real estate tax collectors for the 2019 real estates taxes

Operations

The Board approved the facility rental requests as presented: 

Co-Curricular Leadership 

The Board approved payment of a snack added to the meals being distributed to the children of the district at $0.50 per bag.  

Special Assignments 

The Board approved the following items as presented: 

  • Held a second reading and adopted revisions to Policies 004, 150, 201, 222, 233, 302, 311, 317, 323, 333, 707, 805.2, 810.1, 810.3, 904 and 913
  • Voted for Jamie Evans to a School Board Trustee position for the Southeastern Region of the Allegheny County Schools Health Insurance Consortium for a two-year period effective March 31, 2020

Mr. Wehrer noted that Steel Center Career and Technical Center is planning to move forward with remote learning.  The NOCTI exam given to seniors at Steel Center has been suspended by the state. 

Educational Leadership

The School Board approved the following items: 

  • 2020-2021 Allegheny Intermediate Unit Program of Services Budget totaling $2,202,973.00
  • Accepted a donation of $2,500.00 from the Spectroscopy Society of Pittsburgh to purchase materials to hold a Science Olympiad at Barrett Elementary School
  • 2020-2021 Academic Handbook for the Senior High School

Since students will not be taking the PSSA exams, Mr. Wehrer noted that there would be an amendment to the Senior High School Academic Handbook.  The pre-requisites will be different for the 2020-2021 school year. 

Communications

Mrs. Fitzgerald thanked the administrators, teachers and staff for staying in touch with families during this time. The Facebook posts have been very helpful.

Personnel Management

The School Board approved the following items: 

  • Matthew Takach as a day-to-day substitute teacher for the 2019-2020 school year at the approved daily rate, contingent upon receipt of pre-employment screenings
  • Accepted the resignation of Sharon Hodges from the position of Districtwide Paraprofessional retroactive to March 12, 2020
  • Silas Krupa as a Varsity Boys Volleyball volunteer for the 2019-2020 school year
  • Continue to pay the everyday building substitute teachers their per diem rate and the Food Service workers their per hourly rate, not to be less than their per diem rate, throughout the Governor-Ordered Emergency Closure from March 16 through April 6, 2020, and any subsequent extension

Mr. Bulger thanked the bargaining unit personnel for working through the issues and agreeing on these collective bargaining agreements.

Recent News

Last night the Steel Valley Board of School Directors approved my recommendation to change Thursday, May 28, and Friday, May 29, from instructional days for students to Act 80 days for staff professional development.

IPads

May 22, 2020

Only Seniors are returning iPads. Grades 9-11 may keep the iPads until next school year. Seniors please plan to return your iPads on Thursday May 28th.

Click on header for the Elementary "Recital" Band Concert.