Monday, March 31, 2008

Ashland School District No. 5, Jackson County, Oregon - The Board of Directors met in a work session March 31, 2008, at 6:30 p.m. at the Ashland High School.  Present were:


Mat Marr                     )           Chair

Ruth Alexander             )

Keith Massie                )

Heidi Parker                )           Board Members

Amy Patton                  )


Juli Di Chiro, Superintendent


I.          Call to Order


The meeting was called to order at 6:30 p.m. by Chair Marr.


II.         Roll Check


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


III.       Discuss Turf


The Board members gathered on the football field of the high school.  A representative from the Parks Department was present to discuss the current condition of the grass field.  The recommendation is that the field needs a lot of attention; it has severe drainage issues and needs a new irrigation system.  He recommended a sand based sod field if the district determines it will not be using turf.  He clarified that we could not possibly have the same quality as the fields at North Mountain Park until we considered a sand based field. 


The group moved to the Ashland High School Library, and committee members advocating a turf field met with the Board.  That committee included Loren Luman, Alan DeBoer, Curt Bacon, Coz Constantino, Vance Littleton and Karl Kemper.  They provided information to the Board about turf fields in our area and discussed the advantages of a turf field as opposed to a sod field.  The group asked for permission to raise the money for the turf field.  They estimated that the total cost of installing a new turf field, the required site work, and new lights would be approximately $870,000.  The Board mentioned that the cost and benefit of the turf would need to be weighed against other sports in the community.  The committee will be asking for formal permission at a regular school board meeting.  The Board requested the following information prior to considering this request in May.


·        Estimate of annual cost for maintaining the current field.

·        Estimate of potential revenue that might be raised by renting the use of this field to community groups.

·        Provide a timeline for fundraising and potential installation of the field.





IV.       Discuss Goals for Next Year


Each board member discussed what they wanted considered for the development of next year’s goals.  Suggestions were made as follows.


Chair Marr

  • Finalize the 50 year facility plan based on our current capital projects and the analysis that was done by DOWA.
  • Would like a process to consider any additional revenue from the capital projects that will not be expended on the projects identified so far.
  • Would like to see a robust process for revising Ashland High School that includes community members and staff from all academic levels.
  • Study Ashland Middle School alternative program.
  • Second Language task force.
  • Would like to see the elementary class size task force the Board has decided to appoint for next year expanded to look at the K-12 program as it relates to class size.
  • Would like to see a sustainability council established. 
  • Wants to return to the goal for stabilizing district enrollment and recommended a demographer’s report as part of that work.
  • Revisit the idea of the start time for Ashland High School.


            Director Patton

  • Explore more professional technical partnerships with the immediate goal of restoring some type of welding program, and also looking at other programs in this area.
  • When considering high school redesign, consider the 21st century skills.  The public needs to be involved in this process.
  • Explore language immersion programs.  This could be part of the second language task force work.
  • Re-examine the AMS schedule to accommodate students being able to take part in the PCAT rotation as well as multiple music opportunities. 
  • Implement the class size task force.


            Director Massie

  • Keep the emphasis on the bond expenditures and capital projects.  We have a lot of work in that area.  That is a primary interest.
  • Supports the redesign process for AHS. 
  • Return to the work of developing a more transparent budget process and making sure the budget is readable to the general public.
  • Would like a study of the music program to see if we are getting the outcomes we need and to explore ways to ensure this program is sustainable.
  • Wants the district to consider flexible staffing as a part of the strategic plan initiative to attract and retain qualified staff.  If the district would provide less than full-time jobs, some people might be interested. 
  • Continue the PLC and PEP work.


            Director Alexander

  • Supports language immersion.
  • The second language task force is extremely important.  It needs to begin at the elementary level.  Consider an after-school program if nothing else could be available.
  • Emphasize energy efficiency.  Explore photovoltaic options for the district.  Wants to ensure that we have a complete recycling program at all schools. 
  • Increase math support at elementary and middle schools.  Consider the strategy of having math experts at the elementary who would teach the math portion and the other teachers would be more expert in language arts.
  • Set a goal that every student will be a fluent reader by Grade 3 and every student algebra ready by grade 8.
  • Set a goal that every student become computer savvy – example – An elementary school student should be able to do research on a computer. 


            Director Parker

  • Felt it is difficult to do goal setting at this time because we still have not finished this year’s goals.
  • Redesign at the high school is vital.  Involve elementary parents in this process.  Teachers from all grade levels need to be involved.  We need a broad based community discussion as it relates to the high school redesign.
  • Support the alternative program discussion at AMS.
  • The elementary class size task force also needs to represent a broad community based group.
  • Sustainability for the district should be a high priority.
  • Supports the establishment of a sustainability council.
  • Return to the issue of stabilizing district enrollment.  As a part of that, complete exit surveys for every family who leaves the district.  Also have a satisfaction survey administered to families on a regular basis.
  • Update the demographer’s report.
  • Expand the professional technical program.
  • Supports the elementary immersion program.
  • Work with legislators to fund an all-day kindergarten program.
  • Expand the health choices program at Walker to all district schools.
  • Hire a volunteer coordinator.
  • Brainstorm ideas for improvement of the music program.
  • Supports a transparent budget.
  • Supports development of the 50 year facility plan.


The Board concurred that their two greatest priorities at this point of the year include the high school redesign and the second language task force.  Directors Marr and Alexander will meet with Juli Di Chiro to determine the best process for continuing the discussion of goals.




IV.       Adjournment


There being no further business, the meeting adjourned at 8:30 p.m.


Respectfully submitted by Jeanne Peterson, Administrative Assistant.


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3-31-08 Work Session.pdf


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