Friday, February 08, 2008

Ashland School District No. 5, Jackson County, Oregon - The Board of Directors met in a work session Friday, February 8, 2008, at 10:15 a.m. in the District Board Room.    Present were: 


Mat Marr                     )           Chair


Ruth Alexander )          

Keith Massie                )           Board Members

Heidi Parker                 )

Amy Patton                  )


Juli Di Chiro, Superintendent

Pam Lucas

District Administrators


I.          Call to Order


            The meeting was called to order at 10:15 a.m. by Chair Marr


II.         Roll Check


            A roll of the board was taken and all members were present.


III.       Developing Budget Goals for 2008-09


      Pam Lucas reviewed the projected revenue and expenditures for the general fund.  She explained the tentative nature of the current revenue forecasts due to the fact that we have not received any indication from the Oregon Department of Education about disbursements for the 2008-09 school year.  In order to develop the projections, Ms. Lucas used a set of assumptions and, as we move closer to the budget development process, we will be able to confirm those assumptions and finalize the actual revenue anticipated. 


            The Board reviewed the general fund revenue and expenditure comparison.  The expense comparison was based on current staffing levels projected for three years.  There was a discussion about the 8% fund balance requirement and the fact that we have not been successful at meeting this goal for several years.


            The Board discussed the new local option tax revenue projections.  A conservative estimate is being used for the amount of money that may be collected from the new local option tax.  Until a year’s worth of collection has occurred, it will be difficult to determine how much revenue to budget for that option.  The Board reviewed the Youth Activity Levy budget and discussed how those programs would be folded into the general fund under the local option tax.  Board members expressed an interest in tracking the expenditures and revenue for the local option in a similar way to the Youth Activity Levy so expenditures can be compared over a period of time.


            Michelle Zundel and Juli Di Chiro reviewed the projected costs of the AQEM prototype schools.  This analysis is still being completed, but various standards were projected based on 2007-08 budget figures.  Board members and administrative staff discussed the implications of this report, and all agreed that the current class size goals cannot be accomplished under current funding levels.  The analysis for this report will be completed and ready for the first budget committee meeting in April.


            Juli Di Chiro reviewed a staffing overview for next year.  The goal is not to increase class size at any level of schooling.  However, FTE will be reduced at Ashland Middle School to adjust for enrollment.  We do not anticipate these reductions will have a negative impact on class size.   Superintendent Di Chiro also reviewed the number of retirements, and the plan for filling those vacancies.  She further noted that there will be very few teacher hires for the 2008-09 school year.


            The Board reviewed the list of needs in the district that had been developed by the Lead Team.  An additional $345,000 was identified as being raised from the local option levy, and $295,000 will be available due to the reduction in staffing at Ashland Middle School resulting in a total of $640,000 for new expenditures for the 2008-09 budget.  The list of expenditures exceeds that amount, and priorities will need to be developed.


            The Board recessed for lunch at 12:05 and reconvened at 12:37 p.m.


            The Board discussed concerns for budget development for next year.  Suggestions included: 


District staff should work with SOU to see if a duplication of efforts exists and if we could partner to provide those services to the school district.

Review current budget to determine if there is anything that could be cut in order to provide more revenue for new initiatives.

Appoint a sustainability council for next year to examine purchasing and other practices in the district that could be done in a more sustainable and environmentally friendly way.

Explore an alternative program for Ashland Middle School.

Defer to the Lead Team on prioritizing the needs for next year.

Make sure academics are give the most important priority.

Study potential implementation of second language program in the elementary schools.

Textbooks should be a priority, particularly in the area of Math.

Continue the reading teacher support at all schools.


Top priorities:


AHS Reform.

Alternative program at AMS.

Continued work on district communication.

Restore welding program to AHS.

More feedback from AQEM Prototype model.

Reading, Math and CDS specialists.

Second Language Program.


Math teacher on special assignment.

Continuing work with the North Mountain Nature Center.

Increase school discretionary budgets.

If necessary, hold off on some technology purchases.


The Board asked principals to address their priorities.  Those priorities included:


Restore 8th period day at 9th and 10th grade.

Reading and Math support at AMS.

Health Center at AHS.

More classified support in AHS main office.

Continue current interventions for 9th grade students.

More accessible electives for struggling students.



Increase reading specialist time at AMS.

Develop an alternative program at AMS.

Increase counseling allocation at AMS.



Increase instructional time by increasing the school day or the school year and provide enrichment and intervention for students at that time.

More Math support.

Increase CDS time.



Strengthen instruction through the use of instructional coaches.

Increase CDES time.

Eliminate the sharing of specialist teachers at the elementary level.



Improve instructional strategies of all teachers.

Reading and Math coaches.

Re-examine the ratio for special education staffing.


Willow Wind

Increase CDS support.

Examine special education staffing ratios.

Provide math support to teachers.


Director of Education

Pay attention to the new graduation requirements.

Increase the 8th period offerings at AHS.

Have a lead teacher for each PLC to validate the group.

Continue curriculum alignment.

Develop system-wide interventions for students who are not progressing.




Director of Student Services

Need reading specialists at AMS.

Re-examine staffing levels for special education programs.


The Board directed the superintendent to use the above priorities in developing the budget, and work with the Lead Team in refining budget needs and priorities.


IV.       Adjournment


              There being no further business, the meeting adjourned at 3:10 pm.


Respectfully submitted by Jeanne Peterson, Administrative Assistant.


Download File
2-8-08 Work Session.pdf


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