AAPS Board of Education Notes - November 18

AAPS Board of Education Meeting Notes – November 18

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The Ann Arbor Public Schools Board of Education held a regular meeting at 7p on Wednesday, November 18. The next meeting is Wednesday, December 9. You can watch the meeting live on Zoom or on Xfinity Channel 18. The district typically posts the recording split into segments the day after the meeting.



At the November 18th Meeting, the Board reconfirmed the current status of 100% virtual learning. Case counts are currently very high in Ann Arbor, Washtenaw County, and the state of Michigan.

Work continues on preparing the buildings for in person learning. While some larger projects will continue into the spring, these are not required for the schools to reopen. The remaining projects needed before the buildings reopen can easily be done in the 2 week waiting period to see that the metrics hold.

The facilities team is evaluating standalone HEPA filters. So far, the noise level is not suitable for use in a classroom. The decibel levels are comparable to a busy street. The incremental benefit does not justify the disruption to the classroom.

The district passed their 2019-2020 financial audit. Despite a tumultuous end to the school year and a late funding cut, the budget and actual expenditures were very close. The fund reserve balance is higher than previous years and represents 28 days of operating expenses. With uncertainty this year and a dim outlook for 2021-2022, the fund balance can help fund the district.

I did get a sense of the district and board being open to reevaluating the metrics. But with cases rising dramatically right now, it is not the time. It also sounds like they are evaluating returning some high needs students to in person in advance of stage one hybrid.

Events from our Sponsors


Board: Johnson, Lazarus, Gaynor, Kelly, Nelson, Baskett, Lightfoot

Non-Voting Guests: Osinski (Board Assistant), Swift (Superintendent), Minnick (Asst. Superintendent Finance), Several Staff from Plante Moran, Linden, Parks, Lauzzana

Public Commentary

To fit the largest part of a comment in, Ms Osiniski speed reads the comments making it hard to take notes and guess at spelling. The full text of comments are available on BoardDocs.

There were 34 signups and up to 1 minute and 32 seconds of each letter was read.


Dr Swift: We appreciate hearing from parents. A few things now and more referenced later. In reference to the survey the results were presented to performance committee last month and are on the district website. Both for students and parents. Tomorrow’s performance committee meeting is reporting on staff portion of survey and will be shared after that. It will be in this week’s superintendent’s update and will make sure to

Work on buildings have been detailed in 3 major reports. We understand not everyone has time to watch board meeting. They have beens summarized and shared in weekly superintendents update. Again this evening, there will be an update on progress in buildings.

About Washtenaw County Health Department and our metrics, we wrote a lengthly response to that press release. Not everything is fully explained in the press release. We reviewed those metrics over several weeks with many hours of board discussion. We grappled with the metrics and will continue to evaluate those and use those as a guide and inform our decision making. There is not anything hard and fast about those. The response is posted on our website and I would be good to have that attached to the agenda.

We appreciate hearing from everyone and will address more in detail.

Gaynor: After not responding ot the 50 comments last week, I want to say we have been through 8 months of this pandemic and the strain is felt by all. The frustrations are real. As a former classroom teacher and board and administration understands virtual learning is far from the best mode of instruction and learning and may not be participating as much as parents think. It is tough, it is hard. It’s not what we want. The metrics are tough. When we proposed them we talked about the science. Those who want us to return say science says iti s safe at elementary. Truth is no one really knows. I do know that the frustration is so strong at the very moment that cases are rising dramatically. It’s indicative of the level of difficulty.

We’ve had talks with the administration about the ways we can get kids back. But the next month, month and a half given current cases is not the time to do it.

Lazarus: I don’t have a question, but want to clarify. The performance committee reviewed student and parent responses and those are on the web. Tomorrow we will review staff responses.

Johnson: Thank you Trustee Gaynor, you said a lot of what I was thinking. We do fell the pain, some of us directly with children in the district. It is difficult challenge and we have been living with. I want to speak to those who think we aren’t listening. Just because we don’t do what you ask doesn’t mean we aren’t listening. We have people that share other insight and we continue to evaluate. It is not falling on deaf ears. Our goal is to get back to face to face instruction.

Back to Contents

2019/2020 Annual Financial Audit

Swift: Annual financial audit is a process we go through every year.

A budget is a spending plan. By nature it is a little unstable, we’re never sure of our funding. But beginning in March, it was a tumultuous and uncertain time. Trustees are required to pass a budget by June 30 without the per pupil state amount. Once we were moved into a state of emergency and schools were closed in spring we took significant steps to tighten belt. Positions left vacant, and in real time to reduce as much as possible because we knew there would be significant costs and were uncertain what they would be.

We were projecting to have a 7.8% fund equity at the end of the 19-20 year. After the close on June 30 with the vote of the legislature, we were reduced by $175/pupil or $3.1million for the district. This is a serious concern. But the reductions in expenditures from the spring was enough to balance the $3.1 million cut. The budget review this evening shows a 7.6% fund equity. This is a variance from the projection of 0.3%.

This is a favorable outcome of the audit and is due to the support of our community. We appreciate the way the community supports our schools.

As we review these outcomes and keep a cautious eye towards 2020-2021. One of our continuing concern is about hte 2021 budget and the uncertainty of COVID and economic reversal and the impact that can have on the budget.

(Plante Moran): Issued an unmodified or clean opinion. That’s the highest level return. They also audited federal programs and had no findings or questioned costs. It’s particularly impressive with $10+ million in federal expenditures.

The Audit was performed remotely.


  • $6.7 million capital investment from bond
  • $17.3 milliion in sinking fund for capital repair
  • First series of 2019 bond yielding $152 million for furture capital.


  • Impact of Pending
  • Expansion to match housing development in Ann Arbor
  • State Funding Model

Fund Balance is 7.6% of expenditures. Goal was 7.8%. That represents 28 days of operation. The state’s early warning level is a 5% fund balance. The statewide average is 14.2% and the Michigan School Business Officials recommends a 15% Fund Balance. AAPS Board policy is to aim for 6-15% fund balance. I found this comparison interesting:

AAPS’s fund balance is lower than many other districts in WISD and demographically similar districts.

Budget for 2020-2021 relies on using fund balance due to uncertain funding.


Nelson: I’d like to discuss three points in the spirit of educating on state funding model. Slide 16 with state retirement funding shows the pass through where the state gives us money and takes it right back. Alternatively to doing that, if they did the simple thing intuitively and just made an appropriation to the retirement fund and just made it to the fund directly. In 2013 it was 2.2 million now it is $16.2 – $14 million more. The state is fond of saying it’s increasing funding to education, but $14 million of the increase to AAPS in the last 7 years is a bit of a shell game so they can call it an increase to school districts, but we can’t use it. I think it’s important for people to understand that when the state is giving this money we can use in classroom education and money to solve a problem that was allowed to develop at the state level and requireing todays’ students and teachers to pay for mistakes of the past.

The combination of foundation allowance , enrollment, and state appropriation. I went back to 2018 audit but I noticed the change in numbers. From 2018-2020 enrollment went up and foundation allowance for Ann Arbor went up.We talk about both being drivers of revenue. I want people tor realize it’s a little more complicated than that in Michigan. In 2018 the state funded $126.2 million in 2020 it was $122.8 million. State funding dropped when enrollment went up and foundation allowance went up. What caused that?

Plante Moran: When you get a foundation allowance from the state. That is 2 parts assessment of taxes at a local level and they make up the difference between that. When property values locally increases, state needs to provide less to hit the foundation allowance. So you get the higher foundation allowance, but more is coming from local and less from the state.

Nelson: As long as state increases Foundation to local districts at a rate comparable to local tax values. It can announce it is increasing funding to education even if it isn’t putting in extra dollars. It’s local taxes paying that increase in foundation allowance.

Looking at the future, and not just the year we are in, but the year after that, but July 1, 2021-June 30, 2022. We’re going to start with this year’s state foundation. This year’s state income is about $24 billion and $27 billion in expenditures, so about $2.4 billion is coming from reserves. It can do that because the reserves were there last July 1. Next year, the combined revenues of School Aid fund and general fund were projected to be $26 billion as of August. That means it will take $1 billion from reserves just to keep spending constant. The problem is if you sum the reserves, it’s close to $0 (about $30 million). There is not enough money if you’ve spent it down to $0. There’s every reason to think fiscal 2022 will have smaller reserves and small increase in revenue it may be tougher in terms of funding than this year.


Kelly: I’ve never participated in an audit review with a world renowned economist before. This is my first time with Trustee Nelson. Thank you for your comments. When you talk about not yet having seen a drop in a fund balance as a consequence of recent economic condition. Could we see that drop in the next round, perhaps it’s just too soon.

Minnick: I would suggest a lot may depend on additional stimulus money from the federal level. As you recall in June the fiscal 2021 shows a positive fund balance. We will continue to monitor CARES money, Coronavirus prevention money. It remains to be seen. I’m hopeful. I expect at this time at least we are on track for our budget. For this school year and next we are carefully watching funds at a state and federal level.

Nelson: I appreciate question. I’d just make it more specific. We passed a budget which projected drawing down fund balance by $7.5 million. I think the answer was yes it’s going to drop, but we thought our assumptions were conservative and it turns out they were conservative because that was before the August revenue conference. But now I think it comes back to Ms Minnick with state having a higher foundation allowance. Is there any reasonable statement to make now to change expectations on fund balance.

Minnick: The budget approved by board included $700 foundation allowance dropped. That didn’t occur, but there may be a proration like last year. So foundation allowance remains at the same level. The fiscal 2020 reduction did not carry over and we actually got a one time $65/pupil revenue. That has a positive impact for our funding this year.

Plante Moran: It was founded having additional federal funds to alleviate extra costs. In great recession ARA funds from federal helped offset state cuts. Federal funds come with strings attached. It provides some relief.

Kelly: If the enrollment is stable and state does not do proration and funding comes in for pandemic expenses, we may not see that drop in fund balance.

Plante Moran: Yes, you likely won’t see in fiscal 2021 with coronavirus relief and stimulus funds. But if the state doesn’t recover, there may be a big cut in fiscal 2022.

Lightfoot: I appreciate touching on strings with federal dollars. There are strings just to get it through the Senate. While it’s called relief, it may be a further expenditure. There’s also the timeliness of stimulus. The history of the district has been conservative with spending. It’s helped us be in this position with the pandemic.

Johnson: Just looking at timeline and during economic downturn, the district still has same operating cost when large employers (Pfizer, Borders) left town and property values dropped and another reason we needed to spend more. Does that factor in the drops previously?

Plante Moran: When you have a big decline in property values, but by law it can only go back up so much. And the state has to make up the difference. They may all go up at the same time, but they all go down at the same time. That’s why the fund balance is important.

Nelson: With the Pfizer departure was a big hit and never came back to tax rolls because it is university property. That was a big lingering hit.

Kelly: In the summer after last school year when they prorated did we have to send money back, or did they just reduce future payments.

Minnick: They redueced amount of August aid

Kelly: Did that affect cash flow? Did we have to use other funds?

Minnick: We were ok because we do have fund balance. But it wasn’t anticipated and we didn’t have a lot of notice.


Kelly: On slide 15 when it breaks down salaries and benefits by job category, I would be interested in headcount in each category.

Minnick: I will get it and pass it along.

Swift: The categories are established by the state, so we’d use the state report.

Lazarus: Thank you to Plante Moran for dong a great job. Thank you to Dr Swift for the 19-20 audit and coming out with adding to fund balance and the belt tightening we did all year long. And sometimes went without filling key positions. But we had CARES funds to help supplement and cost savings from the closure. For us to be as close to our budgeting, I have to tip the hat for helping guide us through making the right decisions. This year is going to be tough too. I think we should be careful how we spend our money and watch how the CARES dollars are being used. We’re not out of the woods and have to be careful this year and next year.

Johnson: I echo what Trustee Lazarus said about the fiscal responsibility shown by the team. The other piece that we did that doesn’t show up here is the headcount. We did give a pay increase across the board. I want to confirm that it is reflected in these numbers. How were we able to give that increase. I remember the number we have to make up. How did we do it?

Swift: I appreciate that question and will refer to the finance question. We have tightened our belt more than we spent on that increase.

Minnick: My understanding is the wage increases occurred mid-year so it wasn’t a full year of the increases.

Gaynor: I apologized if I missed it, I thought in finance committee we talked about a minor finding due ot being short staffed when COVID hit.

Minnick: During the audit, there are some internal control processes we need to adhere to better. With turnover in top 2 finance positions and onboarding during audit preparations, there can be issues. In the end as we moved through preparations and process, I have notes of things to imporve for next year.

Plante Moran: We did identify internal control observations that we presented. Just means there is special attention warranted. It was really a timing element fo when the audit takes place and when the turnover happened.

Gaynor: So it didn’t impact the final numbers?

Plante Moran: Yes, it didn’t affect the verdict that the numbers are still factually accurate.

Nelson: I’d add that the audit is specific in noting there is no disagreement between the audit team and the management team. It’s a collaborative work to help us be our best.


Reimagine Learning Continuity of Learning Plan Updates

Updates on the Reimagine Learning/Continuity of Learning Plan. This usually includes a health update.

Swift: It is our obligation each week to update the board on the work of the district. We do our best to be informative while also streamlining our time together. Id’ like to thank students, teachers, and parents who are working to navigate pandemic school year. We hard the remarks and know it is a challenging time.

Monday night I sat with PTO Council and reps from schools, about 40 parents. I appreciate Trustee Gaynor for joining. We know virtual learning is not our first choice, but it is the one we have in front of us at this time. We will continue ot work every day to prepare for the day we can welcome our students back.

We have a balance between updating on virtual work and supporting students and families and updates on work to prepare for the next phase.

I want to point out these clips are not designed to be advertisements. They are examples of the work going on. We’ll bring in a spotlight on a reading intervention classroom and how that is occurring. Then we’ll be bringing state required reporting. We’re looking forward to reporting deeper engagement metrics. Trustee Gaynor & I were chatting about additional metrics we can report ith the end of the first quarter. Coming out of our surveys, Ms Parks will share some refinements to virtual learning school day that are moving into place. It’s focused on giving parents more choice on organizing school day. We’ll also have a building preparedness update. Then our requirements and the state required monthly confirmation vote.

Many commentators said we need more supports – students in virtual learning and small groups back into the buildings just as soon as possible. We will continue to enhance supports. We did hear from Community Centers that they are potentially suspending face to face supports during the 3 week pause. Tomorrow we will be realigning our staff out to fill in the gap in virtual ways.

When we get past the peak of curve, we are looking to bring in small groups of students – youngest, most vulnerable, highest needs. They will be ahead of the stage one openings. This will be small group intervention activity. We will keep buildings in a high state of readiness and monitor data every day.

Next week due to Thanksgiving, food for 10 days will be distributed on Monday, November 23.

Winter giving update: Get details to help: a2schools.org/wintergiving.

Free virtual and in person outdoor classes from Rec & Ed. for PreK-8th Grade are available.

Linden: Introduced a video of Ms Swanson’s reading intervention program at Pattengill. She is doing an interest introduction to book collections in myON. With virtual learning, students are all reading books of their own interest. In traditional classroom they would all be reading the same book.

Events from our Sponsors

Update on Interaction

Parks: State requires reporting of 2 way interaction between student and teacher at least 2 times a week. In all students, we average at least 95%

Our district attendance rate is more strict – attendance daily in each class. They follow up when students not present in class. Average daily attendance is averaging at least 90% for all students.

Refinements to School Day – some are done, some are coming.


  • Elementary
    • Many students didn’t come back for closing circle at the end of the day. After Thanksgiving, it will be earlier in the afternoon
    • Full engagement will still be offered after closing circle for families who want it. Small group time will continue
    • Reducing synchronous morning meeting to four days a week. Wednesday is now completely asynchronous
  • Secondary
    • Advisory reduced to 2 days. Teachers have office hours on on-advisory hours
    • Middle school increasing break time between learning blocks
    • Increasing student lunch time for middle school

Questions on Academic Part Presented:

Gaynor: I’m appreciative of the changes Ms Parks mentioned.

Kelly: I echo that. Thank you for being so responsive. I have three test subjects of my own. I did hear about the change in advisory. I’ve asked my kids, when are teachers checking in on your mental health. They said in advisory. If we’re reducing the number of touches our kids are having, is there another way we’re manufacturing that checkin?

Parks: In addition to our teachers who are leading advisory, we have home teams checking in. There is also a component where teachers are reaching out proactively to students. Advisory is not the only space where we do that.

Kelly: Just because your kid isn’t the intended audience or needed a support, doesn’t mean that no one needs it. I hear from some that nothing is happening, but sometimes it’s just because their kid doesn’t need it and isn’t getting it.

Nelson: This goes back to introductory comment. I want to acknowledge that we board members struggle with the trade-off of children not being in school and the risk to everyone including children of being in school. We talk about it with each other, in small groups, with the administrative team. We couldn’t get it right for every individual in Ann Arbor. Every child and adult and circumstances are different.

Johnson: Thank you for this as well. I want to address what Dr Swift said at the beginning. We aren’t making this a commercial for virtual learning. It is important to highlight where things are going well. Ms Swanson is a product of AAPS and has worked with my daughter at Pattengill. I appreciate the adjustments. Even when we go back to in person, half of it will still be virtual. Even though some comments are demoralizing we appreciate the hard work.

Building Readiness

Swift: We have had 2 comprehensive reports. In Reimagine Learning Website, there are two prior reports. Tonight is just a small update. Mr Lauzzana, last we heard form you we heard about air filters and purchasing purifiers and of course looking at water quatily.


  • Water quality,
    • Continuing to flush water 3x/week to prevent of Legionella bacteria and other contaminants.
    • Testing all school building for lead, E coli and Legionella.
    • Removed Water Bubblers and replacing with bottle fillers
    • Switching bathrooms to touchless operation
  • HVAC
    • Running a minimum of 2 hours a week to keep running – more now that it is winter
    • New Sequence for HVAC for enhanced indoor air quality. More ventilation and filtration
    • Replacing HVAC filters 3x/year – increased from standard rate of 2
    • Deep cleaning & commissioning all HVAC units – should be done in all elementary prior to winter break. Have middle & high school done by spring
    • Ensure restroom exhaust fans in working order to create negative pressure and decrease restroom air from other building areas.
  • Health & Wellness & Directional Signage
    • In/Exit doors
    • Floor plans for buildings to place them.
    • Implementing them now
    • Floor dots are delayed – just received last week
    • Stay in Your Lane Signs
    • Self Screening Reminders
  • Portable Air Cleaners
    • Tested noise levels of 5 models
    • Classroom models at high settings ranged from 59-68 decibels – could be busy street, noisy restaurant
    • Smaller residential scale at high generated 45-59. At 45 is more reasonable, like moderate snoring
    • But lower scale moves less air. Fan speed and its vibration causes noise.
    • Still exploring other models.
    • Manufacturer reported noise level don’t align with what we find.

Questions on Building Preparedness

Baskett: Thank you Mr Lauzzana especially the little chart on filtration. Can you assure us of gettign them, testing them, and installing will be done in a timely manner.

Lauzzana: We have meetings with colleagues around the state. Very few districts are considering air filters. And the work we’re doing on HVAC is not being done everywhere. We have bond and sinking fund to do this. I don’t know any others doing this. We’re expecting 5-6 air exchanges an hour. The portable cleaners only get you another 0.5-1 air change. Maybe 1.5 on the big one. It becomes a point of diminishing returns. We don’t feel there is a lot of benefit to them, but we are exploring the option. In terms of supply chain, the ones that are easy to get are the ones that are really loud. My sense is they would be disruptive and I’m not sure it would get as much benefit from the cost and disruption.

Nelson: My comment is just a ditto to Trustee Baskett. I appreciate you testing it and including the noise level in addition to purifying the air.

Gaynor: Mr Lauzzana already answered the second with air change we already have due to HVAC. I was going to propose caution before spendign them oney. Do they need filter changes and is that a cost we need to factor.

Lauzzana: The first time purchase is a bond eligible expense. Filter replacements that are required would need to come from the general fund. They are all fairly expensive HEPA filter from $100-$350/filter and need 6 months-1 year replacement.

Gaynor: For parents concerned we are not in school because we haven’t prepared facility. Is there antyhign that would keep us from opening schools.

Lauzzana: Not at all. We’re more prepared than more districts that have already opened.

Swift: My understaning is that Mr Lauzzanaa nad Mr Rice are dong research and will come back to baord for purchase.


Kelly: Talk to me about building readiness timeline.Buidlings aren’t waht’s holding us up. But if the 3 week pause did a good job, could we bring people back.

Swift: The buildings are ready to be opened. We know once we approach metrics we need to hold them for some period of time (recommendation is 14 days). We know the customized dots on the floor is a one building at a time process. Don’t worry, it is in process. We could be ready in the time we need to hold metrics. There would be a final cleaning (just like a traditional fall start), final furniture arrangement, let teachers come in & setup. Today we are better prepared than most other folks. That does not mean we won’t continue certain tests to remain in a state of readiness.

Lauzzana: Yes, that is accurate. We are doing things that other districts don’t have the resources/time to do. The conversion of plumbing to touchless is not required to go back to school and have a sink with manual faucet controls. Putting dots on the floor. We’re taking our time and working with principals. We would redeploy staff and have it done in a couple days. We have 140 custodians, we can hang signs quickly. We heard classrooms weren’t setup and we staff and did it in 1.5 days. Some will carry into spring.

Kelly: I appreciate detail and nuance on that answer. I think the message is clear the buildings are ready. You talked about replacing air filters more frequently. What do they filter. And if the answer is they pick up the droplets and particulatest hat carry virus do we have to dispose of thema certain way?

Lauzzana: The research I’ve seen is outside the human body CVOID virus lives 1-3 days which would be at optimal conditions. There’s no current requirement other than wearing a mask and glove to put in the dumpster. They’re not recyclable. By the time it got anywhere, it’s not really a contamination risk.

Health Update

The pandemic is crossing some thresholds. We hope the restrictions going into effect today will help. We heard form the governor’s team on Sunday night about high schools vs elementary schools. The MDHHS school report on Monday showed 1069 ongoing cases from Michigan schools. These are cases that through contact tracing were transmitted at school.

While High Schools do have the most, preschool-elementary still represent 24% of ongoing school cases. These go back to the risk/benefit analysis. We are in a high level of spread in our county and every region of Michigan right now.

At this time based on the upward trend of cases continuing across Washtenaw County, it is my recommendation to continue in virtual learning. As of today, it is the same status as every other public school district in WISD and most in Southeast Michigan. We will continue to implement additional supports as needed.

Johnson: We did hear in commentary discussion on considerations for mental health of students and negative effects of virtual environment. I’d love to see or have a better understanding of how districts can measure – is there a standard? Are there ways we can quantify the other side of the equation.

Swift: We’d be pleased to look at that and we’ve shared a few metrics in the past. But it wouldn’t’ just be the metrics we’ve used before.


Scarlett Walk-In Cooler

Swift: The walk-in cooler at Scarlett Middle School is the original walk-in cooler and well past it’s expected life. But the replacement is a fairly sizable project.

Lauzzana: We believe the cooler and freezer are original tot he building which was built in 1968. These are necessary to sustain the food service program. They solicited bids to be used in an adjacent underused building. The existing units will be demolished and the space repurposed.

The lowest bid is $99500 and we recommend a 14% contingency. It is extensive work due to location in building and the need for compressors. Tradework on plumbing and HVAC plus carpentry to put it together is all needed.

Nelson: This project will be paid by sinking fund. We appreciate the community for the sinking fund.

Baskett: This is a no-brainer right? We need refrigeration?

Lauzzana: Yes, unless we want to buy coolers and ice.

Baskett: What is the timeline assuming approval? And is this failure or failing? Is it impacting htings now?

Lauzzana: We’ve been told it is custom equipment so it is about a 12 week timeline and another month of construction. So 4-5 months once approved. The existing units are functioning, but not in great shape which is why we recommend replacing them. We designed the project to use the storage room to keep the old ones operational while work is done.

Baskettt: Is there a warranty, How logn do we expect it to last?

Lauzzana: I can inquire. I should have anticipated the equipment. I’ll have it for the second bringing. The 50 years is the box, the mechanical equipment has likely been replaced even multiple times during the life cycle.

Baskett: We assume we could get a few yaers out of the new stuff?

Lauzzana: I assume htis is 15 years before we have to replace components.


Consent Agenda

Approve a donationof a tire balancing machine donated by Germain Honda to the Pioneer Auto Lab and the minutes from the November 11 meeting.

Motioned by Trustee Kelly. Seconded by Gaynor. No discussion.

Motion carries with Trustee Lightfoot not voting.

Board Action

The board will take action to accept the Financial Audit presented earlier Motioned by Lazarus, Seconded by Baskett. No discussion. Motion passes unanimously.

Trustee Baskett motioned and read the statement. It was seconded by Lazaurs. No discussion. The motion passed unanimously

Items from the Board & Meeting Adjournment

Kelly: I observed a town hall on special education issues in Michigan. While most were from the Detroit area, there were many similar themes. School district are struggling with staff shortages, virtual IEP and 504 evaluations .IEP isn’t quite adequate in virtual. There were some great resources shared.

They talked about connectivity, relationship with mental health services, and focused on looking at child’s needs. That continues to be true. One thing all the panelists spoke about what what a child needs at home is different than what they need in a classroom with 25 other kids.

Johnson: Happy Thanksgiving to all of you and the community. It’s my favorite because it’s food, family, football. And looking forward to all teh leftovers.

Motion to adjourn by Gaynor, seconded by Kelly. No discussion. Unanimously approved. Adjourned at 11:03p.

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