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No Funny Business at ACS Board Meeting

Updated: Jul 27, 2021

This evening's regularly-scheduled ACS board meeting was a veritable who's who of ACS board members. Literally all of them were there in addition to District Treasurer Jennifer Joyce, Assistant Superintendent Kathryn Slavinski, and District Clerk Jamie Coyle. There were also 5 members of the community in attendance, which is a good amount.

The meeting was called to order at 5:59 PM by eager board president Brian Perkins. President Perkins got right down to business and announced that the next meeting is August 9th at 6pm. So, if you missed out on this meeting you can catch the next one. Following the calendar items the floor was opened up to public commentary, of which there was none. There were also no presentations.

The board information consisted of 4 items (which can all be found after page 4 of the board agenda); Extracurricular Activities Reconciliation - June 2021, Budget Transfers, Update on Sports Merger with Whitesville Central School, and 2021-2022 Tax Rates (everyone's favorite). There was some discussion about the sports merger with Whitesville, primarily about uniforms since what color are they going to wear? Blue or Purple? Do they have enough uniforms? Do we get a hybrid mascot? Apparently there was some discussion of a 3 uniform color solution, but that will all be discussed at a meeting tomorrow with Jenn Joyce, Mr. Bannerman, Jon Morris, and Whitesville's principle and superintendent. I'm pretty sure the public isn't invited. If they are it wasn't mentioned. This meeting will cover uniforms, coach pay, percentage of payments owed by each school and transportation which might get complicated.

There was no board dialogue as they moved directly into board actions of which there were 24. All board actions were approved. All board members participated in motioning, seconding and being in favor of things. Most things were approved without discussion including appointing Kathryn Slavinski Interim Superintendent from August 6th until Dr. Shuelein takes over on August 14th. They appointed a bunch of mentors to mentees. A foreign exchange student was approved. Some warrants were approved, and insurance contracts were renewed. All great stuff.

The first board action that had questions was Item 7 which was in reference to the natural gas bid recommendation from Cattaraugus County Co-op. Board member Kevin Walker wanted to know if this item would save the school money. Jennifer Joyce confirmed that it should and that this was something that is bid out each year and this was for a one-year contract. The company (Energy Marc LLC) will report usage and savings to the school monthly. Following that discussion the motion passed.

The next board action questioned was Item 12, which was about creating a Director of the Teacher Center position for the 2021-2022 school year. The board wanted to know if this was a new position (it is), how this position was funded (grant), and if this position would cost the district and taxpayers anything (it won't). Having those questions answered they voted to approve the position and appoint a Mykal Karl to the position per Item 13.

Item 14 was also questioned, which was the appointment of Alexis Wight to a full-time long-term elementary substitute position. There was some question as to her qualifications by a board member as the item was marked as "certificate pending." Kathryn Slavinski reported that Ms. Wight is still in the process of earning her teaching degree, and her certification is still in progress at Alfred University. The board was satisfied with her qualifications and did vote to approve her. Ms. Wight was in attendance and was congratulated on her appointment.

After Item 14 there were no discussions or speed bumps on the way to Item 24, which was the motion to adjourn. Michele Calladine made the motion, Betsy Kent seconded and all board members were in favor of adjourning at 6:23 PM.

All-in-all I would say this meeting was an 8/10. Board President Brian Perkins kept the agenda moving and made an impressive showing for his first regular meeting as president for the 2021-22 BOE season. Board members asked good questions, and I especially appreciated Pat Howland's questions on the Whitesville sports merger as I really don't know anything about that. I now feel like I know slightly more than nothing. I got to meet Ms. Wight, and she seemed nice. The meeting was only 24 minutes though, and I could have enjoyed a little bit more meeting.

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