Wednesday, 22 March 2017 20:36

Board Meeting Summary, March 21, 2017

Recordings and documents for agenda items can be accessed via BoardDocs by clicking the corresponding agenda items.

Jordan Feeder Principals Propose Summer AVID Program   


The principals in the Jordan High feeder propose to start a program focusing on helping incoming freshmen transition to high school classes, especially in mathematics and science. A 60-student co-hort, identified through grades and other assessments, would be made up of ninth-graders out of Mount Jordan and Eastmont middle schools. Then, for 20 days in the summer, students would attend four-hour math and science courses. Lunch would be provided, and the program also would include three field trips. Transportation would be provided. Cost of the program would be $30,375. Part of the cost — $8,125 — would be for the AVID math and science curriculum. According to the proposal, a student who successfully completes the summer program also would enter school with already-earned credit. The Board will continue to study the proposal.

Construction Report: Midvale Middle and Alta View Elementary

The rebuilds of Midvale Middle and Alta View Elementary are progressing as scheduled. Both buildings will be ready to welcome students and teachers this fall. Starting in mid-June, crews will move supplies and equipment into the new buildings and put finishing touches on the interiors and landscaping. The Administration is recommending that Alta View’s ribbon-cutting ceremony and VIP tour be held on Aug. 14, and that Midvale Middle’s grand opening be celebrated on Aug. 7. Also, this summer, crews will get started on a major remodel of Indian Hills Middle. Over the summer, furniture and supplies will have to be moved from Indian Hills to Crescent View Middle, which will serve as the temporary school site for Indian Hills students during the 2017-2018 school year. The Indian Hills and Midvale middle schools and Alta View Elementary projects are being completed with funds from the $250 million bond approved by voters in 2010. 

Incident Command Manual Update

Earlier this year, Assistant Superintendent Dr. Bob Dowdle assigned a committee to update CSD’s Incident Command Manual, a set of protocols governing the District’s response to emergencies. The review was prompted by a spate of crises at the outset of the 2016-2017 school year. The committee performed a line-by-line review of the manual and identified priorities for the update: 
  • Work with law enforcement agencies and the Division of State Risk Management to simplify and clarify commonly-used emergency terms such as “lockdown” and “shelter-in-place” to eliminate confusion and ensure that schools, police agencies, and families are working with the same definitions.
  • Update and re-design the Incident Command Manual.
  • Create a policy identifying which drills are to be done and reported each month by each CSD school. 
  • Foster a culture of safety, with an emphasis on training.
  • Create a mechanism by which Principals, at their discretion, can transfer incoming calls during an emergency to the Front Desk team.
  • Build a repository of site-specific emergency plans.
  • Meet quarterly to review drill reports, and debrief on emergency responses. 
Committee members are Dowdle; Risk Management Coordinator Kevin Ray; Communications officers Jeff Haney and Kirsten Stewart; Student Support Services’ Tamra Baker; Hillcrest Assistant Principal Brenda McCann; Union Middle Assistant Principal Taylor Hansen; Willow Canyon Principal Marilyn Williams and state Risk Management’s Jeff Rose.   

Board Member Appointments to Safety Committee

Board members Mont Millerberg and Clareen Arnold have agreed to serve on Canyons District’s Safety Committee, which oversees emergency protocols and crisis response for the District.

Legislative Update

Government Relations Director Charlie Evans updated the Board of Education on education-related bills that were filed in the 2017 General Session of the Utah Legislature. Some 165 bills were tied to the operations of schools, he said, the most we’ve faced since the inception of the District. Highlights include fully-funded growth and a 4 percent increase to the Weighted-Pupil Unit, the state funding formula for public education. The Teacher Supply Budget was funded, and Teacher Licensure Fees also will be paid, he noted. The two bills that demanded most of Evans’ and Public Engagement Coordinator Susan Edwards’ time was SB80, which would have siphoned a significant amount of money away from Canyons; and SB255, titled “Funding for Education System Amendments.” Both SB80 and SB255 failed to gain passage. Evans also pointed out that a school-grading bill was approved; a bill that modifies provisions related to the juvenile justice system also was approved; and legislation regarding “Public School Membership in Associations,” which directly addressed the Utah High School Activities Association, was OK’d.  Several other bills also were reviewed for the Board. Information will be sent to departments who may be affected by new legislation.   

Land for Additional Parking at Jordan High

The Board of Education voted to allow Business Administrator Leon Wilcox to engage in negotiations for the purchase of .91 acres at 725 S. State —  the former site of the restaurant — for $1.070,000.  The purchase price is the appraised value of the land.  Up to 126 parking stalls for Jordan High could be built on the land, according to Wilcox. 

Official Welcome to New Administrators  

The Board of Education officially welcomed the administrators who have accepted new roles for the 2017-2018 academic year. The Board of Education approved administrative appointments at previous meetings.

Patron Comments

Canyons Education Association President Jen Buttars expressed appreciation for CSD’s professional approach to contract negotiations. She said the Board cares about teachers, students and classified employees, and it shows in the contract negotiations. As a parent of a Jordan High student, she remarked on the Jordan feeder program that is being proposed.  She also thanked the Board for considering the proposal to purchase land near Jordan High for more parking.

Student Advisory Council Report

The Student Advisory Council presented a report to the Board of Education. This year, the student council discussed, among other things, a recent CSD bell-schedule study, parking issues, and how student leaders can advance change and more effectively serve their communities. They also learned about recent court rulings and how they affect free speech rights in schools. President Taylor commended students for their service and encouraged them to continue to find ways to serve for many years to come.

Action: Policy Updates

The Board unanimously approved under a third reading several policy changes, including an update to bring CSD’s Family Medical Leave policy in line with federal law, and a policy that would require CSD employees who are elected or appointed to a public office to perform their elected duties on their own time while on leave from work. Also approved was a proposal to strike obsolete language from outdated policies having to do with employee suggestions and lump sum payments. The Board approved with one dissenting vote a policy change to clarify rules over paid release time for employees who are called to jury duty or to testify in District-related litigation.

 Employee Exit Survey

Canyons District’s goal is to recruit and retain high-quality employees. Toward that end, the CSD Human Resources Department surveyed employees who have resigned or who plan to retire this year to better understand their reasons for moving on. Most employees are either retiring after long, successful careers or leaving for unavoidable reasons, such as to relocate to another state or raise their families. But some are making a career change or moving to similar positions inside and outside the state, Dimond says. The survey indicates a need to address concerns over workload expectations, financial compensation, employee autonomy and recognition for good work. Employees, however, expressed appreciation for the District’s strong leaders, professional supports and training and collaborative atmosphere.

Pledge and Reverence

Edgemont Elementary Scout Troop 3375 led the Board of Education in a recitation of the Pledge of Allegiance, followed by a reverence delivered by Edgemont Principal Cathy Schino.

Consent Agenda

The Board of Education approved the consent agenda, which includes the minutes from the March 7 meeting; hire and termination reports; purchasing bids; student overnight travel requests; and February financial reports.

Superintendent, Business Administrator Reports

Superintendent Briscoe thanked the Board for staying late to address various issues.  He thanked the Incident Command Manual Update Committee for their hard work.  He also mentioned a fundraising event he attended at which Jordan Valley students were able to connect with a group that helped them with their disabilities.

Business Administrator Leon Wilcox also thanked the Board for addressing challenging issues at the meeting. He also thanked legislators for their work during the 2017 General Session of the Utah Legislature. He thanked the Board for supporting a proposal to buy five new buses. With the purchases, all parts of the fleet will be newer than 2000 models. In addition, he congratulated Nancy Webb for being named the top buyer in Utah. He also thanked Director Gary Hansen for his work in the Purchasing Department. 

Board Reports

Mr. Chad Iverson said he attended the Utah Music Educators Festival last Friday to see the Indian Hills band perform.  He also attended the track invitational races at which Alta and Corner Canyon teams competed.

Mrs. Clareen Arnold reported on advancements in arts-education in the District.  She also mentioned the donated props and costumes that are in storage and can be used by schools and patrons. 

Mrs. Nancy Tingey expressed thanks Canyons’ delegation of legislators.  She lauded the 4 percent increase to the WPU and the changes in policies that will strengthen efforts for academic achievement. She appreciates the members of School Community Councils who are working hard on their CSIP plans. She thanked the Policy Committee for reviewing and updating the policies in the District’s manual. 

Mr. Steve Wrigley reported on visits to several schools and the discussion at a Town Hall.  He also said he spoke to the Student Advisory Committee. 

Mr. Mont Millerberg said he has enjoyed his first three months as a member of the Board of Education.  He recalled the District’s efforts to hold an active shooter drill five years ago, and thanked the Incident Command Manual Update Committee for their hard work. He mentioned the Canyons Education Foundation’s funding of a $6,300 grant to Jordan High to help robotics students. That grant led to the Jordan team winning FIRST Robotics and advancing to the World Championships. He also said he’s been pleased to see the Student Advisory Committee up and running, and said he’s looking forward to the ribbon-cutting at the new Midvale Middle.

President Sherril Taylor thanked Facilities Director Rick Conger for working so hard on all the bond-funded projects. He also invited the community to Indian Hills’ March 30 groundbreaking. The community, he said, is excited for the start of work on the middle school. He also presented information for planning on an upcoming board retreat. He mentioned the Office of Communications for planning Recognitions, and Dr. Dowdle for overseeing the Student Advisory Council. He thanked the teachers and Education Support Professionals for their hard work and dedication.
Canyons District is pleased to announce new leadership appointments, which were approved by the Board of Education on Tuesday, Feb. 21, 2017. The appointments are for the coming school year. 

The appointments are: 

Stacy Kurtzhals, currently Principal at Eastmont Middle, will become a Program Administrator in the Special Education Department. 

Charisse Hilton, currently Principal of Brighton High, will become Principal of Eastmont Middle.

Tom Sherwood, currently Principal at Jordan High, will become Principal at Brighton High.

Wendy Dau, currently Principal at Midvale Middle, will become Principal at Jordan High.

Mindy Robison, currently Principal at Crescent Elementary, will become Principal at Midvale Middle.

Camie Lloyd, currently Assistant Principal at Albion Middle, will become Principal at Crescent Elementary.

Steve Bailey, currently Assistant Principal at Jordan High, will become an Assistant Principal at Alta High.

Ryan Durant, currently an administrative intern at Jordan High, will become an Assistant Principal at Jordan High.

Sandy LeCheminant, currently an Assistant Principal at Eastmont Middle, will become an Assistant Principal at Albion Middle.

Nate Edvalson, currently an administrative intern at Draper Park Middle, will become an Assistant Principal at Eastmont Middle.

Shelley Karren, currently an administrative intern at Alta High, will become an Assistant Principal at Union Middle.

Bryan Rudes, currently an administrative intern at Midvale Middle, will become an Assistant Principal at Midvale Middle.

Brooke Rauzon, currently an Assistant Principal at Union Middle, will become Assistant Principal at Sandy Elementary.
A two-term member of the Canyons Board of Education who is known for her thoroughness and thoughtfulness has been elected President of the Utah School Boards Association. 

Nancy Tingey, who on Jan. 3, 2017 took the Oath of Office for another four years on the Canyons Board of Education, on Friday, Jan. 6, 2017, assumed helm of the organization that advocates for public schools, schoolchildren and teachers. 

As an elected member of CSD’s seven-person governing panel, Tingey, the representative of District 3, doesn’t shy away from rolling up her sleeves and working with various constituencies to tackle difficult tasks and challenges.  

Upon accepting her new role, Tingey said she would focus on “strengthening the important role of USBA in providing resources and support for the members of the USBA, as well as building bridges and trust by working with education policy-makers at the state level and within our respective communities.”

“Together,” she told members of the USBA at the organization’s annual conference at the Little America Hotel in Salt Lake City, “let us move forward in promoting excellence in Utah public education through collaboration and local governance.”

The USBA represents all 41 Utah school districts and the Utah State Board of Education. Members are dedicated to ensuring that every child has access to the education needed to become contributing, productive members of society.
All around Canyons District are familiar faces, especially on the Canyons Board of Education. On Tuesday, Jan. 3, at a special Oath of Office ceremony and reception, well-known education advocates Nancy Tingey, Chad Iverson and Mont Millerberg were sworn into office for four-year terms on Canyons’ governing body.

Tingey, who represents District 3, and Iverson, the Board member for District 7, won re-election after serving for four years.  Millerberg, who served on the inaugural Canyons Board of Education from 2008 to 2012, returns to the represent District 1.15800179_10153940860311580_5795022078091866798_o.jpg

They took their oaths of office in ceremonies conducted by Salt Lake County Clerk Sherrie Swensen. Drill team dancers from Hillcrest High, the reigning 4A state champs, performed the flag ceremony, and Scott Taylor, managing editor of the Deseret News, was asked to do a special address about the importance of public service. 

It’s been said that “with great power, comes great responsibility,” and nowhere is that more evident than with public schools, which have a profound influence on children and our collective future, Taylor said. 

Remarking on how his own 32-year career can be traced back to early educational experiences, he thanked Board members for their willingness to serve. He also said many of the tenets of journalism, such as the imperative to be transparent, can be applied to public service. He urged the Board members to strive to explain not just the who, what and where of policy and budgeting decisions, but also the why and how.

In their first remarks, the trio of newly sworn-in members thanked their family and friends for their care and support. They also pledged to serve the patrons of Canyons with integrity and fidelity. 

“I want to thank the people of Draper for continuing to put their trust in me. It’s truly an honor to serve,” said Iverson, whose district covers schools in the Draper area. He added that he aims to work with other Board members to increase teacher morale, address enrollment imbalances, and boost student achievement on such a15800534_10153940859776580_3807687661020407362_o.jpgssessments as the ACT, among other issues.

Millerberg told the audience at the ceremony and reception in the Board Chambers of the Canyons Administration Building-East, 9361 S. 300 East, that “it’s really, really good to be back on the Canyons Board of Education. "

“It’s been said that the best government is the government that is closest to the people,” he said, “and you honestly don’t get much closer to the people than you do working in the public school system.”

Tingey, who 15896190_10153940859771580_3236991302878019068_o.jpgserves as the Board’s 2nd Vice President, said that “serving on the school board is not so much about giving speeches — but more about rolling up our sleeves and working together to tackle the tasks and challenges that we will face.”
Wednesday, 19 October 2016 22:37

Board Meeting Summary, Oct. 18, 2016

Note: Recordings and documents for agenda items can be accessed via BoardDocs by clicking the corresponding agenda items.

Indian Hills Relocation During Construction

The Board of Education voted to formally relocate Indian Hills Middle, 1180 E. Sanders Road, to the former Crescent View Middle building, 11150 Green Ridge Dr., for the 2017-2018 school year. Additionally The Board approved adjusting the transportation boundary to the Crescent View building so more students qualify for transportation services while Indian Hills is being renovated. The renovation of the middle school is being funded by a $250 million bond issuance approved by voters in 2010. This will be final project to be completed with proceeds from the bond.   The District has completed all projects promised to the voters at the time of the bond’s passage.

F1 Visa Update

Office of Planning and Enrollment Director Dr. Floyd Stensrud updated the Board on progress toward obtaining permission to award F-1 visas to foreign students who wish to study at CSD high schools. The District has paid the initial fees, completed all applications, and awaits approval, possibly as early as October or November. If approved, Canyons would join seven Utah school districts that offer F-1 visas.  The other districts are Alpine, Davis, Kane, Nebo, Murray City, Park City, and Provo. Stensrud reminded the Board of the pros and cons of maintaining an F-1 visa program. CSD currently awards J-1 visas to 18 students through Utah’s foreign exchange program. F-1 visas are another path for non-immigrant students to study in the U.S., which gives districts greater flexibility but also requires more hands-on work to administer. There is currently demand for F-1 visas from students who have relatives overseas who would like to study at CSD’s high schools, and from students whose parents had to leave the country but they would like stay in Utah, Stensrud said. Foreign exchange programs provide American students an opportunity to interact with youth from different cultures, and any costs are covered by enrollees who would pay CSD the rough equivalent of Utah’s Weighted Pupil Unit. It does, however, place an administrative burden on school staff and might necessitate hiring a coordinator.

Code to Success

Assistant Superintendent Dr. Bob Dowdle spoke to the Board about “Code to Success,” an effort to teach students how to gain valuable computer-coding skills. Students who wish to participate in the proposed June-through-August course, which would be housed at Jordan High, would need to apply for entrance. The Board was asked to spend $27,000 to provide the program to up to 70 students in the summer. That would cover the cost of two teachers to provide 90 hours of instruction. Upon successful completion, students would receive an industry certification that would qualify them for a certain level of employment. The program is sponsored by the Ken Garff Automobile Group, the backers of Keys to Success. The Board will consider the proposal at a future meeting.

Governor Signs Declaration Honoring School Principals

With the flourish of his pen, Utah Gov. Gary Herbert signed a declaration establishing Oct. 17-21 as Principals Week across the Beehive state. As busy as bees, principals in high, middle and elementary schools "serve as educational visionaries, instructional leaders, assessment experts, disciplinarians, community builders, public relations experts, budget analysts, facility managers and much more,” states the declaration. Principals, the governor says, set the academic tone for their schools and work collaboratively with teachers to increase student achievement. The Canyons Board of Education and Administration agree with the governor’s words, and wish to express appreciation for the lengths our principals go to ensure the college- and career-readiness of all our students. The governor's declaration was read into the minutes.

School Upgrades Proposal

Under a second reading, the Board considered more than two dozen small capital projects for the 2017-2018 school year, including a remodel of the Main Office at East Midvale Elementary; the installation of carbon-monoxide detectors at all elementary schools; and roofing and HVAC repairs. Each year, schools submit their construction wish lists, which are ranked by an administrative committee that weighs, among other things, whether the projects are a safety or security imperative, or will meet a legal requirement, said Business Administrator Leon Wilcox. If approved by the Board, the Purchasing Department will begin soliciting bids from February to March 2017 with a goal of having the projects completed the following fall.

Proposed Calendars

Office of Planning and Enrollment Director Dr. Floyd Stensrud presented two proposed calendars for the 2017-2018 academic year.  The calendar committee aimed to create a calendar that, for the ease of parents, would sync important dates and events at high, middle and elementary schools. Option No. 1 proposes to start school one week earlier than in the 2016-2017 school year.  It also provides time for elementary testing both in the fall and the spring; a two-week Winter Recess, and ends at the end of May. Option No. 2 largely mimics the 2016-2017 academic calendar. Per tradition, Brighton High has a separate calendar to accommodate the school’s trimester schedule. 

Consent Calendar

The Board of Education approved the consent calendar, including the approval of minutes from the Board meeting on Oct. 4; employment and termination reports; purchasing bids; student overnight travel; September financial reports; 2017 Utah Consolidation Application; and revised 2016-2017 Land Trust Plans for Union Middle School and Silver Mesa and Granite elementary schools. 

New Foundation Board President

The Board of Education ratified the appointment of John Martindale, Managing Partner of Alisa Capital, as the President of the Board of the Canyons Education Foundation. He succeeds Brad Snow, whose four-year leadership was honored during the Recognitions portion of the meeting. The Board also approved new Foundation bylaws and articles of incorporation and received the Foundation’s annual report.

Utah College Application Week

Two current students, Jordan High’s Gloria Equino and Jose Rios, and former Brighton High student Emma Critchlow, spoke in favor of Utah College Application Week, an event held annually to help every Canyons District senior submit a viable college application. The students spoke to the Board about how much UCAW events have positively impacted their lives. For example, Rios said he received a scholarship to attend college and play soccer. Critchlow is now attending Weber State University with money earned from a Foundation scholarship. The Canyons Education Foundation also pledged up to $10,000 to pay the college-application fees for low-income students.

Pledge of Allegiance, Reverence

Jordan High’s drill team presented the colors and led the audience in a recitation of the Pledge of Allegiance followed by brief remarks by Jordan Principal Tom Sherwood. Praising Jordan High as a socioeconomically diverse and high-achieving school, Sherwood noted that half of the school’s juniors and seniors this year are taking an Advanced Placement course and another 25 percent are taking a concurrent enrollment course for college credit. The school also is home to National Merit Scholarship semi-finalists and was the first school in the district to implement the AVID program.

Superintendent, Business Administrator Remarks

Superintendent Dr. Jim Briscoe reported on attending a job fair at Brighton High. He also urged Board members to attend future job fairs at other CSD high schools. He also told the Board about his recent lunch meeting with PTA and SCC leaders, during which he presented the Board’s recently approved vision and mission statement.

Business Administrator Leon Wilcox told the Board that 34,017 students are enrolled in CSD, up by 118 from last year. He said the kindergarten enrollment is down 164 students this year, which could be a one-year blip in the counts. Wilcox also mentioned taking dignitaries, including Midvale Mayor Joann Seghini on a tour of the rebuild of Midvale Middle, which is scheduled to open next fall. In addition, he noted that sod turf will soon be installed at the new Butler Elementary. He also mentioned that Open Enrollment for health insurance will start Monday, Oct. 24.  All employees are required to signal whether they want to keep insurance or have insurance elsewhere.

Board of Education Reports

Mr. Robert Green reported on attending the recent Apex Awards and congratulated the winners. 

Mrs. Amber Shill thanked the presenters for explaining their items and following up on previous questions from the Board. She also thanked the team that planned and executed the Apex Awards. She invited the community to Brighton’s final football game of the season.

Mrs. Nancy Tingey asked the Board for an OK for the subcommittee regarding CSD’s vision and mission to reconvene and look at data compiled by Superintendent Briscoe. She thanked Dr. Briscoe for hosting the luncheon with PTA and SCC leaders and for leading a discussion on the newly approved vision and mission statements. She also expressed thanks for those who were honored with Apex Awards. She made special note of the schools that have amended the Land Trust Plans to address school needs. She invited the community to a 7 p.m. Town Hall on Oct. 27 at Albion Middle.

Mr. Steve Wrigley asked the Board to place the vision statement atop the Board meeting agenda with the aim of reminding the Board of the purpose of their work. He also attended the Arts Consortium meeting. He attended the Pathway to Professions conference. He also expressed thanks to those who planned the Apex Awards. 

Mr. Chad Iverson thanked Board members for approving the plan to move Indian Hills students to the old Crescent View Middle during the duration of construction. He attended middle school and high school cross country meets, as well as freshman/sophomore athletic contests. He went the league championship game between Brighton and Alta. He also invited the community to the Alta vs. Corner Canyon rivalry game.

President Sherril H. Taylor commended Canyons principals for their hard work and dedication. He said they deserve the week dedicated to their service. He thanked the officers for protecting the peace at Board meeting.
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