Chattahoochee Hills Charter School

Governing Board

Regular Meeting - Monday February 12th, 2018 @7:00 PM

Meeting Minutes

Attendance Summary

Name Status Arrival Time Departure Time
Dr. Warren Edwards present On Time At Adjournment
Abigail Corbett, J.D. present On Time At Adjournment
Kathryn Lawrence not present
April Ledom present On Time At Adjournment
Shadeed Abdul-Salaam present On Time At Adjournment
Dr. Knox Phillips present On Time At Adjournment
LaChauna Edwards, Esq. present On Time At Adjournment
Dominique Love not present
Peter Vantine present On Time At Adjournment
Jessica Pressley-Willis present On Time At Adjournment
Kapinga Mukenge present On Time At Adjournment
Chester Asher present On Time At Adjournment

Welcome and Call to Order

The meeting will be called to the order, beginning with the pledge of allegiance.

Approval of the Agenda as Submitted

So that there is agreement between board members on the agenda, and the amount of time spent on the meeting, the board shall vote to approve an agenda for the meeting. To the best of its ability, it will stick to that agenda, and allow for the chair to usher the board through the agenda as specified.

Approve the agenda as submitted

By: Abigail Corbett, J.D. Seconded by: Shadeed Abdul-Salaam

There was no notable discussion on the motion.

Approval of Minutes from Jan 22, 2018

Approve the minutes as submitted

There was no notable discussion on the motion.

Public Comment

  • 1st parent says that she wants parents to be involved in the committees.
  • 2nd parent states that she does not feel like a stakeholder in the community. She has felt that this school year has stressed her out because teachers are leaving constantly. She feels that teachers need to be supported
  • Next parent says she has a 5th grader and a 1st grader. She says that she has been a part of chcs since the beginning. She says that she is happy because this is the 1st year her daughter was excelling in Math but now she has a new teacher and she isn’t excelling again. She said that the board needs to bring in an HR person to help the climate at the school.
  • Next parent says there have been a lot of changes over the last few months. But she wants to know when the staff changes will stop. She wants to know when the Principal search will begin and if it is for this school year or next.
  • 5th parent says that her students say that they don’t want to attend school here anymore. She says that there is a common goal of bringing the school test scores up.
  • 6th parent- speaking for her grandchildren. She says that she is speaking from what she has seen from her personal talks with her grandchildren. She said that she doesn’t like that her children are being told that teachers were fired.
  • Parent says that she isn’t happy that teachers are leaving we cant wait until January to improve test scores.
  • 8th parent says that the stress of the school is trickling down into the community. Likes the proposal to have an HR person. Feels like the principal search isn’t enough to change the climate.
  • 9th parent says that she agrees with everyone that has spoken so far. She says that some teachers are not GPSC certified and as a result she wants to know if those teachers can actually administer the GPSC to the students. She wants to make sure that full background fingerprints are on the GPSC site
  • Former board chair speaks (as a parent)He wants to remind the board is that our mission is to inspire children based on our mission. He wants the board to remember that we are here to serve the students.
  • Board Chair responded  to the public and states the administration, parents and staff HAVE to work together to improve this school.
  • Foundation Executive Director asked for volunteers. Discussed the groundbreaking ceremony. A video of a news article discussing the new building was shown to the room. 
  • PTO - annoucned the Feb PTO meeting. Announcend the March 9th mardi gras ball. Asked for parents to volunteer to sit on the parent panel to interview the new principal 

Executive Director's Report

  • Enrollment - 484 students currently. 26 new students in January. There was a delay in transfer students being released from their previous schools 
  • 8 suspensions for the school year
  • 0 dismissals 
  • Ms. Johnson was hired to address school culture
Parent and Teacher surveys will come out this month
  • All staff have all necessary professional training hours required
  • ELA/Math saw midterms saw improvements in every category
  • Saturday Academy was developed because grades may not accurately reflect testing scores. The midterm assessments look at the deficincies of the students in specific areas
  • Tomorrow there is a grade team meeting to discuss tri-focus initiatives. Once a month teachers are conducting discovery days where students go outside for the whole day or half day to "discover"
  • There is a current requirement for students to go outside at least once a week. 
  • SPED - looking at IEPs 95% of SPED students are receiving services. Expired IEPS for students who came into the school. They are all scheduled to be evaluated. 
  • Teacher Growth - There have been over 200 classroom observations and feedback. 
  • March 22nd event with potential funders for new classrooms "blueprint for success"
  • Partnering with GA Tech to conduct expeditionary learning and registering for the STEAM conference. 
  • Partnering with AIR serene to bring the arts program to CHCS. Admin is also looking at turning a school bus into a recording studio
  • Looking at a STEAM summer cam
  • Crew Culture Report
  • what is pushing staff out?
  • whats being said about why teachers are leaving
  • 2 referenced low pay
  • too much work
  • no voice
  • disagreement with the vision
  • behavior issues
  • being closer to home
  • only 1 staff member was let go
Goal is to increase teachers pay in the long term above FCS. Staff currently under FCS pay
Too much work - reformed lesson plan
looking at lunch monitors to free up teacher's times during lunch
No voice - there is a monthly listening sessions and admin resorts back. Admin team only really listens and asks clarifying questions
Theres been an anonymous suggestion box
Team leads on Tuesday meetings
Weekly coaching with teachers
Open Door policy
PTO president met with about 10 teachers
ED listed  Staff Concerns and what the Admin's solution was for the problem. 
Asher provided the solutions that was given to the teachers concerns each month.

@Abigail Corbett, J.D.asked the difference in the teacher surveys that have been completed.  - @Chester Asher explained that the upcoming surveys are from the state not internally
@Shadeed Abdul-Salaam asked for parents to consider the importance of 
@Kapinga Mukenge asked if there is a tracking system for teacher satisfaction. @Chester Asher explained they conducted surveys and also in the coaching session teachers have an opportunity 
@Dr. Knox Phillips explained that the board will pan strategically how to improve the school culture


Finance Committee Report

A. Committee Report

January net revenue at $1,114.36 due to purchases during the month

Wifi is in the process of being updated

Reimbursements will soon occur for laptop purchases once the grant reimbursement paperwork is submitted. 

school is in search for a new vendor for cleaning services

Goal is to get around $100k back in the reserves account. Current deficit is due to the lower money allocated from FCS due to a discrepancy in student count in the beginning of the school. Also, the SPED numbers were incorrectly recorded with FCS

EMAP revenue - a large number of families have balances they need to pay. For families who do not satisfy the debt the child will be unable to attend the after school activity moving forward. 

@Dr. Warren Edwards  asked about security for laptops. @chaz stated that laptops are in a locked cart and teachers sign out to take them to the class. The IT Director checks to ensure that all laptops are in the carts

@Dr. Warren Edwards asked about Title I percentages. 

@Jessica Pressley-Willis asked about security of the internet access. IT has certain websites blocked and the IT director also has the ability to log into any laptop 

Tomorrow is the CHCS lottery. There are 91 available seats with over 500 applications.

B. Monthly Financial Report

C. FY18 Budget Update

D. Personnel Approvals

Accept Financial Report

By: Dr. Warren Edwards Seconded by: Abigail Corbett, J.D.

There was no notable discussion on the motion.

Academic Excellence Committee Report

@Dr. Warren Edwards Asked for the Board to hold the report until next month because the committee met this morning. 

Governance Committee Report

The Governance Committee met on Sunday February 11th, 2018 @2:00 PM for what was scheduled to be a 0 hours and 51 minutes long meeting. Present: Dr. Knox Phillips, Abigail Corbett, J.D., LaChauna Edwards, J.D., April Ledom Not Present: Chester Asher

The members considered the following items:

  1. Welcome and Call to Order
  2. Placing New Board Members on Committees
  3. Upcoming Board Retreat Planning
  4. Planning for Open Board Member Seat
  5. Posting of Agendas and Notes for Committee Meetings
  6. Organization of Past and Present Board Policies

The committee considered 0 motions, of which 0 passed, and 0 failed:

The meeting adjourned at 3:16PM

Elect Peter Vantine as Board Treasurer

By: Dr. Knox Phillips Seconded by: April Ledom

There was no notable discussion on the motion.

External Affairs and Communications Committee Report

@Dr. Warren Edwards explained that the board will discuss at the  Board retreat on how to use this committee more effectively and strategically. 

Facilities Committee Report

@Shadeed Abdul-Salaam deferred to Asher to discuss the facilities update during the ED report. 

The land disturbance permit needs to be approved. 

@Shadeed Abdul-Salaam said he had a conversation with the architect. His inquiry was around the design for the sports area. The roof structure is designed in such a way that the area could be retrofitted to add 8 more classrooms in lieu of the sports complex. Architect said the rough bid between 725k -825k. His interest lied in the possibility of not having space in the future. 

@Abigail Corbett, J.D. asked about the contract and if there are an liquidating damages clauses to address if the contractors do not stick to the timeline. @Chester Asher will send her a copy. 

Strategic Planning Committee Report

  • @Dr. Warren Edwards we are in a midst of a transition regarding charter renewal. GA is moving into a new framework for petitions for charter renewal. We have to wait for the new charter renewal metrics to be released to apply. It is not currently set to be released until July. GA Charter Schools Assoc (GCSA) says we should be already writing and prepared to submit in the fall. 
  • The VP at GCSA is asking for FCS to give clearer directions for charter schools that are up for renewal. 
  • @Dr. Knox Phillips has a call with GCSA for an update
  • FCS is aware of our intent to apply and seems very supportive of our work. 
  • We are going after a 5 year renewal
  • FCS has a new strategic planning process for charters, and is asking that we use their process
  • @Chester Asher says that he wants to show a change in trajectory for renewal. He wants data to show that we are making significant progress. He states that he feels really good about where the school is academically at the moment despite the distractors. 

Executive Session

Move to Enter Executive Session

By: Dr. Knox Phillips Seconded by: April Ledom

There was no notable discussion on the motion.

Move to Exit Executive Session

By: Dr. Warren Edwards Seconded by: April Ledom

There was no notable discussion on the motion.

The Meeting was Adjourned

The meeting adjourned at approximately 10:20 pm

Motion to adjourn

By: Abigail Corbett, J.D. Seconded by: Jessica Pressley-Willis

There was no notable discussion on the motion.