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2015 Highlights

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Past Highlights

Board Highlights

Previous versions can be found on the Board Audio/ Highlights/Minutes page for 2011 and 2010

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...from the July 21, 2015 Board of Education Meeting


Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) Requests

Superintendent Dr. David Moyer reported that three FOIA Requests were received:

  • One requesting information regarding summer construction, which was granted.
  • One requesting information regarding specific exceptions for in-district transfers, which was denied.
  • One requesting information regarding retirees' personal information, which was denied.

August 3 Administrative Retreat

Dr. Moyer presented an agenda for the August 3 Administrative Retreat. “We are working to bring people together under a common theme of building capacity. Topics include Professional Learning Communities (PLCs) and change leadership, leading to the primary focus of the year, which is building assessment literacy,” he stated.


Board Improvement Committee

The Board Improvement Committee met on July 14, 2015. Topics discussed included the July 20 Board Retreat agenda.

Dr. Moyer reviewed his ideas for the Board Retreat based on input, feedback and meetings he has held and attended since joining District 205. The Committee discussed the ideas and solidified a recommended agenda.

The recommended agenda was as follows:

  • Mike Schmoker article:­ meaningful and productive school improvement to improve outcomes (group discussion activity)
  • Professional Learning Communities
  • Michael Fullan video:­ Organizational Reform System, focuses on culture and group quality (group discussion activity)
  • Business Meeting Agenda
    • Committee Structure (committee and full Board topics)
    • Operational Planning Process (short & long ­term)
    • Academic Return On Investment (AROI), District Management Council, “Spending Money Wisely”

The Board whole-heartedly endorsed Dr. Moyer’s plan; the Retreat was held on Monday evening.


Following a discussion of the second item, the Board voted 7-0 to approve the following consent agenda items:

  • Personnel Report
  • Financial Reports
  • Complete 2015-16 Calendar (which will be posted next week)

John McDonough requested that the Financial Reports item be pulled to talk about making the monthly report more clear to the whole Board and the community, regarding what is being approved.

Margaret Harrell agreed. “There are quite a few documents we are looking to approve tonight.” She asked for a high-level summary of the items.

Finance and Operations Committee Chair Chris Blum said there are summary by object and fund summary reports given to the Operations and Finance Committee monthly that are also included in the full Board packet. “In Committee, this is the shortest part of the meeting, because it is largely a tracking exercise. We spend a lot of time on the front end building a budget, then we track it month to month. At the end of the fiscal year, we do a ‘look back’ over the year; that will be coming up in the next Committee meeting.”

Chris Whelton, Assistant Superintendent for Finance and Operations, pointed out that, “These reports are normally presented at the first Board meeting of the month. They are ‘canned’ reports coming out of our Skyward financial software. They are the same reports that have always been presented.”

Dr. Moyer explained that “Almost everything contained in this report is normal operations - such as payroll, insurance and utilities.”

Board President Jim Collins suggested that there be a discussion at the next Finance meeting regarding what items might be brought to the full Board on a regular basis without being redundant. “This sounds like more of a public presentation issue than a Board issue,” he said.


The Board voted 7-0 to approve the following action agenda item:

  • Resolution of Appointment of School Association for Special Education in DuPage County (SASED) Representative

Each member district of SASED is asked to designate, through formal Board action, a representative from the District as a member of the SASED Board. The Board appointed Superintendent Dr. David Moyer to serve as its representative to the School Association for Special Education in DuPage County (SASED) Board for the 2015-2016 school year and Karen Stuefen as the alternate SASED representative.


Stormwater Update

Mr. McDonough, who serves as one of two District 205 representatives to the City of Elmhurst’s Stormwater Communications Committee, reported that “On May 22, we sent a revised draft of the IGA to the City for the Madison School project. We were expecting to meet and discuss it. The City asked the school and park district representatives of the Stormwater Communications Committee to attend a public hearing on July 9. The City wanted to discuss this in a public forum. We went through their letter, as some language needed to be ironed out. There was more progress made on the document during a meeting held last week.”

A few policy issues that have been previously discussed by the Board include:

  • Providing the City with the right of first offer (versus the right of first refusal)
  • The liquidated per diem penalty, should the proposed design not perform as intended.
  • And the timeline for implementation - District 205 asking that construction begin in one year from the agreement, while the City sought a window of four years.

If the District should decide to sell a piece of land on which the City has invested in the infrastructure, the City would be provided with the opportunity to submit a first offer. If the offer did not represent full asset value, the Board could then hold a public auction.

Mr. Collins reminded the Board that from the beginning, its non-negotiables have been the:

  • Safety of students, which is paramount
  • City would pick up the bill for all “improvements”
  • School district would maintain ownership of the property with the right to reclaim if necessary
  • City would make District 205 “whole” for any related costs incurred (including lawsuits)

Mr. McDonough noted that the City would like termination of the IGA to be based on a specific event and termination be related to educational purposes.

Emily Bastedo suggested that warranties would cover possible performance problems and indemnity language contained in the agreement should cover District 205. “It’s not going to cost the District anything; it’s going to improve our fields; and it’s going to help relieve flooding for some residents. In addition, green space makes the land more valuable,” she said.

Alderman Jim Kennedy, chairman of the Public Works and Building Committee, spoke during public comments and reported that the Inter-Governmental Agreement between the City and District 205 would be returned to the Board of Education by July 22. The next public Stormwater Communications Committee meeting of the City will be held on Thursday, July 23, beginning at 7 PM at City Hall in the City Council Chambers, 209 N. York Street.

New drawings related to the proposed Bryan Middle School project were received by the Board from the City on Tuesday, July 21 (to view, please click here). Mr. Collins suggested that Dr. Moyer talk with the Bryan and York athletic departments, check with our bus company and possibly with the police about the safety, feasibility and necessity of this new configuration. The original plan provided for 23 acre feet of water retention in the gravel lot at Bryan, with another 17 acre feet gained from the softball field. This new plan totals 27 acre feet, but provides for improved “playability” of the fields over time.

Shannon Ebner felt that engineering data is needed for each of these new concepts and said, “We need more than what was provided to us. Will these changes help more residents? It’s really a cost/benefit analysis.” The Board’s concern centers on the idea of dual use for these properties and whether or not that’s realistic.

“What information does the Board need in order to come to a decision?” asked Dr. Moyer. “If we were able to come up with a usage and design plan, is that what you need? If it’s just a matter of working through the process, then so be it. We want to help you make a decision as expediently as possible for the sake of the greater good.”

Mr. Blum stated that “We’ve said yes multiple times. When we started this, we were talking about Madison; that’s the logical next step.”

Alderman Kennedy reported there are 31 homes on Washington Street that flood. Ten or 11 of them would be helped by the Madison project. “It doesn’t solve all of the problems, but it will make a difference. Bryan Middle School helps the Saylor and Jackson area, as does the proposed site at Jackson Elementary School. Bryan is the project that can help the most amount of people at the least cost.”


August 11 – Board of Education Meeting – 7:30 PM – District 205 Center

August 14 – First Day of School for students attending York High School & the Transition Center

August 19 – First Day of School for students attending District 205 K-8 schools (students attending Madison Early Childhood Center begin August 20)

September 2 – First Focus 205 Community Engagement Session – 7 PM – York High School Commons - visit for more information

September 7 – Labor Day Holiday – No School

September 8 - Board of Education Meeting – 7:30 PM – District 205 Center

September 22 – Board of Education Meeting – 7:30 PM – District 205 Center

NOTE: Video footage of all Board of Education regular meetings are posted on 205TV within 48 hours. Audio is posted within 24 hours at (please click on appropriate meeting date).