Part of the Bay Area News Group

MDUSD board to meet Wednesday to make interim appointments permanent, sunshine Local 1 contract proposal and discuss leadership

By Theresa Harrington
Monday, January 27th, 2014 at 12:34 pm in Education, Mt. Diablo school district.

The Mt. Diablo school board will meet at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday in the district office at 1936 Carlotta Drive in Concord. Here is the agenda:

“1.0 Call to Order
1.1 President will call the meeting to order Info
2.0 Announcements
2.1 In closed session, the Board will consider the items listed on the closed session agenda. Info

3.0 Public Comment
3.1 The public may address the Board concerning items that are scheduled for discussion during closed session only. These presentations are limited to three minutes each, or a total of thirty minutes for all speakers or the three minute limit may be shortened. Speakers are not allowed to yield their time. Info

4.0 Adjourn to Closed Session at 6:00 p.m.
5.0 Closed Session Agenda
5.1 Negotiations – The Board may discuss negotiations or provide direction to its representatives regarding represented employees, pursuant to EERA (Govt. Code Section 3549.1) Agency negotiators: Julie Braun Martin and Deborah Cooksey, Agencies: MDEA, CSEA, Local One M&O, Local One CST, MDSPA, and Supervisory. Info/Action
5.2 Readmission of Student #03-11 into the Mt. Diablo Unified School District. Action
5.3 Readmission of Student #24-12 into the Mt. Diablo Unified School District. Action
5.4 Readmission of Student #A-14 into the Mt. Diablo Unified School District. Action
5.5 Readmission of Student #B-14 into the Mt. Diablo Unified School District. Action
5.6 Readmission of Student #17-13 into the Mt. Diablo Unified School District. Action

6.0 Reconvene Open Session
6.1 Reconvene Open Session at 7:30 p.m. Info

7.0 Preliminary Business
7.1 Pledge of Allegiance and Roll Call Info

8.0 Report Out Action Taken in Closed Session
8.1 Negotiations Info/Action
8.2 Action on readmission of student #03-11 into the Mt. Diablo Unified School District. Action
8.3 Action on readmission of student #24-12 into the Mt. Diablo Unified School District. Action
8.4 Action on readmission of student #A-14 into the Mt. Diablo Unified School District. Action
8.5 Action on readmission of student #B-14 into the Mt. Diablo Unified School District. Action
8.6 Action on readmission of student #17-13 into the Mt. Diablo Unified School District. Action

9.0 Recognitions and Resolutions
9.1 Recognition of National Board Certified Teacher – Teresa Mejia, Meadow Homes Elementary School Info

9.2 Resolution #13/14-29 African American History Month Info/Action

10.0 Board Member Reports
10.1 Board reports Info

11.0 Superintendent’s Report
11.1 Superintendent’s Report Info

12.0 Reports/Information
12.1 LCAP Presentation Info

12.2 Minutes of the Board of Education Meeting of January 15, 2014 Info/Action

12.3 Board Committee Assignments Info/Action

13.0 Consent Agenda Action
13.1 (Item #1) Items listed under Consent Agenda are considered routine and will be approved/adopted by a single motion. There will be no separate discussion of these items; however, any item may be removed from the consent agenda upon the request of any member of the Board and acted upon separately. Action
13.2 (Item #2) Recommended Action for Certificated Personnel Action
13.3 (Item #3) Recommended Action for Classified Personnel Action
13.4 (Item #4) Classified Personnel: Request to Increase Positions Action
13.5 (Item #5) Request to Increase Full Time Equivalent (FTE) for the 2013-2014 School Year Action
13.6 (Item #6) Beginning Teacher Support and Assessment (BTSA)Induction Program Support to Private School Teachers Action
13.7 (Item #7) Approve increase to independent service contract with Kristin Obrinsky, Physical Therapist Action
13.8 (Item #8) Approve contract increase with Independent Contractor Dr. Sherry Burke, School Psychologist Action
13.9 (Item #9) Increase purchase order with Speech Pathology Group. Action
13.10 (Item #10) Adjustments to Non-Public Agency (NPA) Contracts Action
13.11 (Item #11) Approval of Non-Public School (NPS) Adjustments Action
13.12 (Item #12) Request for increase in funding of a previously approved contract and purchase order with My Therapy Company. Action
13.13 (Item #13) Approval of Independent Service Contract with St. Vincent’s School for Boys, Catholic Charities CYO (Catholic Youth Organization) Action
13.14 (Item #14) Independent Services Contract for Concord High School and Events to the “T” Inc. Action
13.15 (Item #15) Approval of Extension of 2012-2013 Single Plans for Student Achievement (SPSA) through May 2014 Action
13.16 (Item #16) Request for Replacement of Outdated Warrant Action

14.0 Consent Items Pulled for Discussion
15.0 Public Comment
15.1 The public may address the Board regarding any item within the jurisdiction of the Board of Education of the Mt. Diablo Unified School District that is not on this agenda. These presentation are limited to three minutes each, or a total of thirty minutes for all speakers, or the three minute limit may be shortened. If there are multiple speakers on any one subject, the public comment period may be moved to the end of the meeting. Speakers are not allowed to yield their time. Info

16.0 Communications
16.1 District Organizations – At regular Board meetings, a single spokesperson of each recognized district organization may make a brief presentation following the Consent Agenda. Items are limited to those which are informational. Info

17.0 Business/Action Item

17.1 Change Interim Appointments to Regular Permanent Status Action

17.2 Request approval for submission by Mt. Diablo Adult Education of an application for Adult Education and Family Literacy Act (AEFLA): Workforce Investment Act (WIA), Title II, Section 231 and the English Literacy and Civics Education (EL Civics) supplemental funding for 2014-2015. Action

17.3 Public presentation from Mt. Diablo Unified School District’s Initial Successor Agreement Proposal for Public Employees Union Local #1 Maintenance, Operations, and Facilities/Transportation/Landscape/Warehouse/Food and Nutrition Services/Technology and Information Services/Substitute Custodian and School Bus Driver Units (M&O). Info

17.4 2012-2013 Audit Report Action

17.5 Approve contract increase to 2012-2013 Interagency Agreement #28-325-2 between MDUSD and Contra Costa County, Mental Health Services Division Action

17.6 Approval of Master Contract with 1-on-1 Learning with Laptops, a State-Approved Provider of Supplemental Educational Services (SES), to provide tutoring services to the eligible students at the 10 Title I schools, as follows: Bel Air, Cambridge, Fair Oaks, Meadow Homes, Rio Vista, Shore Acres, Sun Terrace, Ygnacio Valley Elementary; and Oak Grove and Riverview Middle Schools. Action

17.7 Leadership Development Info

17.8 Northgate’s Model UN Trip to New York City. Info/Action

17.9 Mt. Diablo High School’s IHTA Sustainable Tourism Field Trip to New York City Info/Action

17.10 Mt. Diablo High School’s Field Trip to the 2014 Northern California Western Nevada Jr. Science and Humanities Symposium Info/Action

17.11 Proposed date change for June 11, 2014, Board Meeting Action

17.12 Meeting Extension Action

18.0 Future Agenda Items

19.0 Closed Session
20.0 Reconvene Open Session
21.0 Adjournment”

What agenda items interest you the most?

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  • Doctor J

    I would bet Dan Reynolds will give permission since he announced it ! Besides, its a settlement of pending litigation.

  • Doctor J

    Did I hear correctly that a mother had to pay several hundred dollars for a French Horn so her child could play in the band ? Isn’t that a violation of AB 1575 ?

  • Doctor J

    I wonder how cute Jennifer Sachs would look in an orange jumpsuit with silver bracelets ? Would daddy bail her out ?

  • tmharrington

    I have sent an email asking if he’ll release it.

    Regarding Hansen’s comments about the Academic Decathlon, only ONE MDUSD school is participating: Concord HS. Other participants are Acalanes, California, Campolindo, Dublin, Freedom, Irvington, Las Lomas, Miramonte and Pittsburg high schools.

  • Doctor J

    What is State Supt. Tom Torlakson’s response to the GAO report ? All he did a year ago was send out a letter that was never followed up by him.

  • g. de la verdad

    I would suggest that Dan Reynolds gave his consent by making a Public Statement about it last night.

  • g. de la verdad

    54957.1. (a) The legislative body of any local agency shall
    publicly report any action taken in closed session and the vote or
    abstention on that action of every member present, as follows:

    And, 54957.1 (1) (B) If final approval rests with the other party to the
    negotiations, the local agency shall disclose the fact of that
    approval and the substance of the agreement upon inquiry by any
    person, as soon as the other party or its agent has informed the
    local agency of its approval.

    It would appear that the Board and Shoenke could use an updated reminder.

  • tmharrington

    Yes, even Greg Rolen routinely provided settlement agreements when requested.

  • tmharrington

    Interestingly, one of his top advisers, Craig Cheslog, retweeted my tweet about the report: “Thanks to @askgeorge for addressing #MDUSD case as it relates to report on child sexual abuse reporting by schools: http://www.contracostatimes.com/news/ci_25023007/reporting-by-schools-suspected-child-abuse-lacking-many …”

    Cheslog was charged with compiling all the responses received from districts about their mandated reporting policies and training. In my end-of-the-year interview with Torlakson, he said this about mandated reporting:

    “We’re going to keep sending advisory letters and I think districts are getting more aware of their requirements. We encourage DAs and courts to vigorously pursue those who have violated those laws. I sent my letter to remind districts this is serious. This is a serious legal obligation for the safety of the children at our schools.
    The other approach we’re taking is to put in a budget request for the update of a training program and some additional monies to help the districts do the actual training itself. There is an online training course.
    We are hoping the legislature will use some of the bounty of this growing budget to address this issue very seriously and upgrade the training resources we have today.”

    Ultimately, Torlakson can’t mandate that districts offer training. That kind of direction would have to come from the Legislature. But, Rep. Miller and the GAO report pointed out that all districts that receive federal funding must comply with Title IX by keeping kids safe from sexual harassment and abuse. Miller said that includes taking preventative measures, which he believes must include training about spotting and reporting abuse to OUTSIDE authorities.

  • tmharrington

    Here’s info about a math festival for students in grades 6-12 on Feb. 8 at Pixar: http://juliarobinsonmathfestival.org/festival.php?id=45

  • Doctor J

    I guess CoCoCo District Attorney Peterson did not get Torlakson’s memo about prosecuting administrators and teachers for failure to report suspected child abuse. I love Coach Torlakson’s words — now we need action: “We’re going to keep sending advisory letters and I think districts are getting more aware of their requirements. We encourage DAs and courts to vigorously pursue those who have violated those laws. I sent my letter to remind districts this is serious. This is a serious legal obligation for the safety of the children at our schools.”

  • tmharrington

    Acalanes and Lafayette districts are both putting parcel taxes on May ballot: Acalanes, Lafayette school districts approve parcel taxes for May ballot: http://www.contracostatimes.com/contra-costa-times/ci_25028833/acalanes-lafayette-school-districts-approve-parcel-taxes

  • g. de la verdad

    Well, he did get well over $70K out of district taxpayers to say “No Comment” for four months. Maybe he and his firm will “discount” her legal bills by that amount.

  • Guest

    Northgate had a growing and very enthusiastic program for five years. Apparently it was discontinued two or three years ago.
    The County Office of Education is always looking for volunteers to help with Mock Trial, Academic Decathlon, and Model UN. Anyone willing to be a judge or a coach should contract the county office.

  • tmharrington

    Here’s info on a Peaceful Schools conference on Saturday in Walnut Creek: http://www.contracostatimes.com/news/ci_25029748/peaceful-schools-conference-saturday-walnut-creek

  • Doctor J

    Chaos today at Dent — Dr. Nellie is flexing her muscle. Rumor has it that McNorthgate has retained a criminal defense attorney Felicia S-S is on thin ice about Bloodborne pathogen lack of training — and don’t forget about sexual abuse lack of training and sexual harassment lack of training.. Rose and Julie B-M have several hot seats: ASCA training without board approval, cover-ups on sexual abuse complaints, promises of “me too” to administrators for raises, Dan Reynolds involuntary move to NG which has been rescinded by Board action, and last but not least — misstating the preparedness of staff for CCSS, and the recent hiring of spy Lynne Carlisle. But lest I forget, Bryan Richards has some pretty wimpy and unsupportable answers for last nights audit inquiries — never seen inquires as pointed as those on an audit — free training and he didn’t even know about it. One more thing — how I wish I knew how to take a picture of the “smirk” given by Annie Nolen to Bryan Richards last night — it was a simple ruse of giving him the one finger salute. We need an internal auditor just to know the truth about the budget and expenditures.

  • g. de la verdad

    First, we need The State AG and/or CDIAC to step in and do a full forensic audit: Beginning with the first 2010 Measure C Issue ‘A’ of CABs, with the funds being used to directly pay off non-voter approved Certificates of Participation and some really squirrely district mortgages/loans/etc, which were 100% General Fund Operation obligations; Then a full investigation of the books of the Rolen Legal Department expenditures.

    Trying to get an investigation from local sources is Fox-Henhouse.

    Then, we need a fully-independent Internal Auditor/Risk Manager with no ties to the General Counsel’s office or the CFO. One who reports directly–and only–to the Board and Superintendent.

  • Guest

    @Gdlv, who is this Greg Abel you are talking about? Also, we have all these kids who got hurt; anyone know what happened to Rolen or Lawrence after their expensive buyouts?

  • Doctor J

    I can’t find anyplace in the Northgate PFC Minutes or Agenda or budgets where McMorris was authorized to use $20,000 for the Model UN boondoggle to New York for 12 students, himself and two other chaperones. http://www.northgatehs-pfc.com/pfcboard.php

  • g. de la verdad

    Looks like it’s been an open issue since at least 10/17/13 PFC meeting.

    “Discussion arose after questions about the MUN program and it’s $20K contribution from the PFC budget. This program is run and administered by Mr. McMorris, and he is attempting to incorporate it in to the 10 th grade/World History curriculum next year and going forward.”

  • Doctor J

    The PFC budget for 2013/14 was approved in May 2013, but there is no line item for $20,000 for the Model UN. Just 12 students — and the Board agenda item 17.8 said “Funding: All fees connected to this event are paid by parents.” Really ??? Since the Board did not allow Guy Moore to give public comment until after the vote, a Cure and Correct Brown Act violation notice would be appropriate for the Board to re-vote having greater knowledge.

  • g. de la verdad

    From the same minutes I quoted above: “Discussion arose about criteria for allotting monies to programs. The PFC executive board always considers as much information as is possible/available, with careful attention to how many students the monies will be affecting and attempts to ensure equity at all times. ”
    Of course, McNorthgate sits on the PFC Executive Board………

  • g. de la verdad

    Is McMorris’ Little Extras paid ‘under the you-know-what’ for income tax purposes…?
    Here’s the budget.
    http://www.northgatehs-pfc.com/documents/Final_budget.pdf
    Is McMorris the “Academic Counselor” getting $20K, who also has a $7,000.00 “Principal’s Fund?”

    Does the PFC file Worker’s Comp and 1099′s on him? Or is his ‘pocket money’ run through the District like other PFC funded employees?

  • tmharrington

    In the past, the external audit has recommended that the district reinstate the position of internal auditor, I believe. When questioned directly about this, this year’s auditor also said it would be a good idea.

  • tmharrington

    Here’s Reynolds’ response to my inquiry about the settlement:

    “Yes, we have reached a settlement regarding my involuntary transfer.
    No, at this time, I am not planning on releasing a copy of it. My comments at the board meeting were/are my public statement about the fact that we have reached a settlement, that I am happy that the entire ordeal is over, and that I look forward to the work to be done in the future to continue to educate the students of our community.”

  • g. de la verdad

    Which must mean that taxpayer money changed hands, in addition to reinstatement. Whether it was merely Reynolds “costs” on the suit or more, it is now up to the District to follow the mandates of 54957.1 (1) and advise taxpayers of exactly what prior foolish actions by an interim Supt. are costing them.

  • Doctor J

    I guess transparency does not apply to Dan Reynolds, eh ? I hope that CCT pursues their Public Record request.

  • Guest

    Why would any money be involved? Reynolds didn’t lose any money and his representation was covered by his and the rest of our union dues.

  • tmharrington

    WCCUSD’s LCAP presentation is MUCH more in-depth than MDUSD’s and includes the kind of financial information Willie Mims was blasting MDUSD for omitting: http://www.wccusd.net/Page/4328

    Plus, it has already posted notes from its community meetings.

  • tmharrington

    Here’s a new blog post highlighting the efforts of MDUSD and WCCUSD to seek parent input for Local Control Accountability Plans: http://www.ibabuzz.com/onassignment/2014/01/31/school-districts-seek-community-input-for-spending-plans/

  • Doctor J

    Once Reynolds filed litigation, he waived any rights of privacy. Just the defense of MDUSD and Board consideration of litigation in closed session, gives the public the right to know the outcome. because money was spent in defense by in house or outside counsel, and staff time.

  • Tk

    Don’t know if this will actually come to pass, but it’s just another reason for the MDEA members to leave the district. MDEA teachers have absolutely nothing to look forward to in this district. The atmosphere is horribly negative, and the district has made no good faith effort to make a change and improve morale, salaries, or anything else that might make it a more attractive district to either stay in or come to. I’m not sure why anyone would want to teach today, and especially in the MDUSD.

  • Vindex1761

    Theresa. Great job as always. I’m wondering why the WCSD is never covered? They have some major personnel issues at the administrator level. The CBO was promoted from WCI after the staff effectively had several votes of no confidence in his leadership. The current WCI principal just had a no confidence vote against him. Just because the WCSD team covers better doesn’t mean there aren’t issues. For example… Look at the reserve the WCSD carries on its books!!!!! That’s taxpayer money designated to educate children, not keep on their books. Is the WCSD board just a rubber stamp for Dr. Wool, or are they complicit in the mismanagement of this district?

  • tmharrington

    Vindex, Thanks for the info about the vote of No Confidence. That’s interesting, since MDUSD recently hired away Kevin Honey from WCI to become principal of Sequoia MS in Pleasant Hill. I think he has also brought another WCI employee to Sequoia.

    In the past, WCSD has been very well run and there was little to no controversy there. Also, our Walnut Creek reporter has covered that district, while I have focused on MDUSD and regional stories. Many districts are keeping large reserves in case the promised LCFF funding doesn’t come through. But, WCSD is slated to get more money due to its 15 percent population of disadvantaged students.

    When I used to cover WCSD several years ago, I found the board to be very engaged in what was going on, but also very reliant on staff (which is true in most districts). If there is indeed “mismanagement,” it should be brought to the board’s attention and then they will be accountable.

    I will mention the vote of No Confidence to our Walnut Creek reporter to see if she is interested in covering it. If not, or if she doesn’t have time, then I will look into it.

  • tmharrington
  • tmharrington

    Here’s an inspiring video about the good work that Walnut Creek chef Cindy Gershen is doing at MDHS, with her message, “change the food, change the future”: http://vimeo.com/85798496

  • Doctor J

    @TH What was the follow up on why so many schools in mdusd did not report any suspensions ?