Guilderland Central School District

Minutes for Regular Meeting of the Board of Education

November 1, 2016

High School - LGI Room

7:00 PM



Executive Session

1.              Exec Session Roll Call

Executive Session Roll Call


Catherine Barber – Present

Barbara Fraterrigo – Present

Teresa Gitto – Present

Christine Hayes – Present

Christopher McManus – Present

Seema Rivera – Present

Allan Simpson – Absent

Judy Slack – Present

Gloria Towle-Hilt - Present

2.              Proposed executive session, subject to Board approval.

The Board entered into executive session to discuss the following matters: 


1.               employment matters of a particular person regarding retirement,

2.               the employment history of a particular person and matters leading to a tenure appointment,

3.               the employment histories of a particular persons and matters leading to potential appointments, and

4.               issues relating to potential litigation with respect to a complaint.


MOVER:              Barbara Fraterrigo, Board Member

SECONDER:              Seema Rivera, Board Member

AYES:              Gitto, Barber, Fraterrigo, Hayes, McManus, Rivera, Slack, Towle-Hilt

ABSENT:              Simpson

Call to Order

Attendee Name




Teresa Gitto

Board Member



Catherine Barber

Board Member



Barbara Fraterrigo

Board Member



Christine Hayes




Christopher McManus

Vice President



Seema Rivera

Board Member



Allan Simpson

Board Member



Judy Slack

Board Member



Gloria Towle-Hilt

Board Member



Linda Livingston

District Clerk




Public Input on 2017-18 Budget Development

No public comments were made.

High School Student Representative

High School Student Representatives, Michel AbdELMalek and Andrew Lin, updated the Board of Education on activities at the high school including:

·         The football team lost to Shaker High School in the semi-finals,

·         The soccer team lost to Shenendehowa High School in the semi-finals,

·         The girls swimming and cross country teams are still in the sectionals,

·         The first Deserving Dutchmen awards will be on Tuesday, November 15,

·         Trick or Treat Street was a great success; they had four bounce houses and 24 clubs had tables to give out candy, 1,100 kids participated, and

·         The fall play To Gullian on Her 37th Birthday will be held on November 3, 4, and 5 at 7:00 p.m.

Showcase of Students

Superintendent Wiles introduced a representative from the New York State Public High School Athletic Association, who presented the School of Distinction Award to our high school.  This award recognizes the high school for having all of our varsity teams (30 teams) achieve an average grade of 90% or above. 

Public Comment #1

Persons wishing to speak under the “Public Comment” section of the meeting should either contact the District Clerk (456-6200 X 3125) before the meeting OR fill out one of the Public Comment Forms, available on tables at both entrances to the meeting room, and return to the District Clerk.

Mr. Ed Downey, a combat veteran, thanked the Board of Education for all veterans and fellow reservist for passing the alternative veterans exemption.  He said the money they save on taxes they are able to put back into the community.

Consent Items


MOVER:              Barbara Fraterrigo, Board Member

SECONDER:              Judy Slack, Board Member

AYES:              Gitto, Barber, Fraterrigo, Hayes, McManus, Rivera, Slack, Towle-Hilt

ABSENT:              Simpson

1.              Minutes Approval

A.              Board of Education - Regular Meeting - Oct 18, 2016 7:00 PM

2.              CPSE & CSE Recommendations

3.              Personnel Action

A.              Personnel Action November 1, 2016

A.                  Appointments -  Instructional - Not Probationary

BE IT RESOLVED, that the Board of Education of the Guilderland Central School District hereby accepts the recommendation of the Superintendent to appoint the following instructional employees:              


1.              High School Co-Curricular Advisor(s) 2016-17

BE IT RESOLVED, that the Board of Education of the Guilderland Central School District hereby accepts the recommendation of the Superintendent to appoint the following co-curricular advisor(s): 


Stipended Positions:

Musical,  director                                                        Andrew Maycock

Musical , music director                                          Claudia Feeney

Musical,  music conductor                                          Kathleen Ehlinger             

Musical,  producer                                                        Elaine Gross             

Musical,  sound                                                        Warren Huntley

Musical,  choreographer (shared)                            Erin Hughes & Christine Meglino

Amnesty International                                                        Andrew Ryan

CBS Bowling  (shared)                                          Jamie Longtin & Mark Kotary

Non-Stipended Position(s)

Italian Club                                                                      Leslie Roma

2.              Middle School Co-curricular Advisor(s) 2016-17

Non-stipended Position(s):             

8th Grade Advisor -                                                         Migdalia Young

3.              Rachael Bacon, as a temporary elementary education teacher at Guilderland Elementary School, effective September 1, 2016 through June 30, 2017.  Ms. Bacon holds Childhood Education (Gr.1-6), initial certification.

4.              Brooke Curtin, as a temporary special education teacher at Westmere Elementary School, appointment effective September 1, 2016 through January 25, 2017.  Ms. Curtin holds Students with Disabilities (Gr.1-6), professional certification.


B.              Resignations - Non-Instructional

1.              Carmelo Calabro, as a school bus driver, effective October 27, 2016.  Mr. Calabro has been employed by the District since April 14, 2015.


C.              Appointments - Non-Instructional

1.              Heather Comparetta, as a cafeteria monitor at Lynnwood Elementary School, effective October 28, 2016.  The probationary period for this appointment is fifty-two (52) weeks.


D.              Requests for Leave of Absence

1.              Kimberly Commisso, an elementary education teacher at Guilderland Elementary School, is requesting an extension of her parental leave of absence through June 30, 2017.


E.              Emergency Fingerprint Clearance

1.              Jacob Malka - substitute clerical & aide/monitor


F.              Substitute Aides, Monitors, Bus Attendants, Bus Drivers, Food Service Workers, Cooks, Clerical Workers, Custodial Workers, Messengers, Auto or Maintenance Mechanics or Accountants:

1.              Jacob Malka - substitute clerical & aide/monitor

4.              Financials

A.              Treasurer's Reports for the Period Ending July 31, 2016, August 31, 2016 and September 30, 2016

B.              Revenue Report for the Period Ending September 30, 2016

C.              Expense Report for the Period Ending September 30, 2016

D.              School Lunch Financial Reports for the Period Ending September 30, 2016

E.              Capital Project Financial Status Report for the Period Ending September 30, 2016

F.              Internal Claims Reports

G.              Extraclassroom Activity Funds Quarterly Report for the Period Ending September 30, 2016

Information Items

1.              School Business Information

A.              10 Year Enrollment Projections

Neil Sanders reviewed the long range enrollment projections.  The projections are based on the cohert survival method that use historical data of the percentage of students transferring to the next highest grade level each year.  The cohort survival method is a widely utilized and accurate method for projecting school enrollments.


Mr. Sanders said the trend continues to see the number of students decrease.

RESULT:              DISCUSSED

B.              Water Testing for Lead

The vast majority of the water samples have been collected for the high school building.  The high school samples were required to be collected by October 31st.  Those samples will be sent to a state approved laboratory for analysis. 


The district is currently in the process of developing remediation plans for the water outlets that exceeded the action level at the elementary school buildings.  The district will be working with our architectural engineering firm and certified industrial hygienist on these plans.  One of these professionals must review and approve the remedial measures for the cost to be eligible for state aid.  Once remedial measures are implemented, the water outlet must be retested and fall below the action level before it can be placed into service. 


Yesterday afternoon, the district received the middle school’s water testing results, which includes 95 outlets throughout the building with readings above the action level (15 parts per billion).  The majority of outlets exceeding the threshold are science lab sinks, as well as seven outlets used for drinking and cooking:


·         Four sinks in Family and Consumer Sciences (FACS) classrooms

·         One drinking fountain

·         Two steaming kettles (a piece of kitchen equipment that cooks large quantities of food using steam heat), which have not been used during the 2016-17 school year.


As of today, November 1, all outlets exceeding the action level have been taken offline (covered so they cannot be used) or are in the process of being labeled for hand washing only.  These outlets will not be used for drinking or cooking until follow-up test results indicate that lead levels are at or below the action level.

RESULT:              DISCUSSED

2.              Curriculum & Instruction Information

A.              Study of Promising Practices for Supporting English Language Learner Achievement

A 2016 Case Study of Guilderland Elementary School's English as a New Language (ENL) Program was given to Board members.  This study was conducted in 2016 by researchers from NY Kids project of the University at Albany's School of Education.  Of note is that Guilderland Elementary School (GES) met the criteria "odds-beating" because the difference between expected and actual average performance based on the 2012-13 and 2013-14 NYS ELA and Mathematics assessments was significantly higher than that of other schools across the state.  Thus the school is distinctive for exceeding expected performance in multiple subjects and grade levels.


The study highlights many of the promising practices used at GES and in the district.  They include our focus on literacy learning, ongoing and embedded professional learning. Connections with community and families, supportive leadership, access to technology and resources, and a system forged upon collaborations.

RESULT:              DISCUSSED

B.              Journal Conducts Mock Election

The editorial staff of the Journal decided months ago that one of their goals was to be a forum for conversation in the advance of the November election. The second issue of the year, an “Election Special”, is timed for release Monday, November 7th.  This included surveying the entire GHS student body regarding who they would vote for in addition to answering a few exit poll questions.


The following are some brief statistics regarding the GHS Presidential Election survey results, which was conducted through Google Forms.


1.              The survey was sent to 1780 students over a two day period and had a response rate of about 25%

2.              The survey yielded the following results:

              Mock election for President: Clinton (50%), Trump (26%), and Johnson (8%); 17% of respondents chose not to participate/nonvote (this was an option)

                            the percentage of non-voters decreased with grade level

3.              Respondents were asked to rate the most important election issue, which was based on a poll/news article from Forbes.

              for all grade levels, the economy was the most important issue followed by terrorism, education, and gun policy

              as grade level increased...the importance of terrorism fell, the importance of the economy increased/remained the number one issue, the importance of gun policy decreased

              education was ranked high in ninth grade, fell in grades ten and eleven, but was tied with the economy as the two most important issues in twelfth grade

4.              Respondents were asked how likely they were to be influenced by polls using a four-point Likert scale (1- not likely to 4- very likely to be influenced)

              all grade levels had an average response of 1.98, which signaled that students were mildly influenced by polling data from the media

5.              Respondents were asked to identify the most important quality in a presidential candidate

              Honesty was the most frequent response followed by respect, trust, integrity, intelligence, experience, leadership, strength, and wisdom

RESULT:              DISCUSSED

C.              Guilderland Students Selected for the Area All State Music Festival

This year six Guilderland High School students were selected to perform in the Area All-State Music Festival on November 18th and 19th at Saratoga Springs High School. These outstanding ensembles consist of students chosen from a nine county area including Albany, Fulton, Hamilton, Montgomery, Rensselaer, Saratoga, Schenectady, Warren, and Washington counties. Competitive selection to these groups is based upon the score received by the students’ during the previous spring at the NYSSMA solo evaluation festival.


Playing clarinet in the Concert Band under the direction of Mr. Andrew Perry (West Genesee HS) and will be: Jason Sindoni, tuba and Isabella Wu, clarinet.


Singing in the Chorus under the direction of Mr. Anthony Miglione (William Jewell College) will be: Ryan Dempsey, Anna Fernandez, Avery Heaney, and Michelle Prunier.


The concert will be held on Saturday, November 19th beginning at 2 p.m. in the Saratoga High School auditorium. This outstanding performance is open to the public and tickets are $8 for adults and $3 for students and $5 for senior citizens.


Congratulations to all our talented young musicians, their families and their music teachers Mrs. Kathleen Ehlinger, and Mrs. Rae Jean Teeter.

RESULT:              DISCUSSED

D.              Guilderland Recital Raises Funds for Charity

The Guilderland Music Faculty and Friends will present a recital on Thursday, November 3rd in the Farnsworth Middle School at 7:00 p.m.  This evening features music from students and staff in all different genres and styles. The music faculty are joined by members of other departments and administration who all join together to perform.


This delightful evening gives students and the community an opportunity to appreciate their teachers in the role of a performer. Highlighted on the program will be both vocal and instrumental ensemble performances.


While there is no admission for this event, each year donations are collected and given to a charitable organization. The charity this year is the Guilderland Food Pantry ( Monetary and food donations are appreciated.


Come enjoy an evening of outstanding musical entertainment and help support a worthy Guilderland charity!

RESULT:              DISCUSSED

3.              Superintendent Information

A.              Superintendent’s Conference Day - Update

Dr. Wiles provided a brief update on the professional development opportunities provided to staff as part of the Superintendent’s Conference Day held Tuesday, November 8.

RESULT:              DISCUSSED

B.              Board Member Priorities for 2017-2018 Budget Development

The first opportunity for the Board of Education to weigh in on the budget is at the December 6th Board of Education meeting.  We are trying a different approach for board members to weigh in on the 2017-18 budget.  The goal of the approach is to link board member’s budget priorities to our established district priorities and to provide the leadership team clear preliminary guidance on the budget from the board as a whole.  Dr. Wiles gave an overview of the new form.  The form will be sent to Board members tomorrow, November 2, to be returned by November 16. The results will be shared in the Board communications on November 18 and will be discussed at the December 6 Board meeting.

RESULT:              DISCUSSED

C.              Strategic Planning Update

Dr. Wiles said they have received five proposals for the strategic planning request for proposals. A committee will be formed and the proposals will be reviewed.

RESULT:              DISCUSSED

Action Items

1.              School Business Management Action

A.              Federal IDEA Flow-Through Funds Agreement

Approved the following memorandum of agreement with respect to the Guilderland Central School District’s allocation of the Approved Special Education Program (ASEP) provider’s share of federal IDEA Flow-Through Funds and the ASEP’s expenditure and record keeping obligations for those funds, and authorize the Superintendent of Schools to execute the agreement:

Albany County Preschool


MOVER:              Barbara Fraterrigo, Board Member

SECONDER:              Catherine Barber, Board Member

AYES:              Gitto, Barber, Fraterrigo, Hayes, McManus, Rivera, Slack, Towle-Hilt

ABSENT:              Simpson

2.              Superintendent Action

A.              Co-Curricular Club Approvals

The request to form the following co-curricular club was approved:


High School

              Guitar Club - Mr. Ouckama

Habitat for Humanity- Mrs. McConaghy


MOVER:              Teresa Gitto, Board Member

SECONDER:              Seema Rivera, Board Member

AYES:              Gitto, Barber, Fraterrigo, Hayes, McManus, Rivera, Slack, Towle-Hilt

ABSENT:              Simpson

B.              Memorandum of Agreement

RESULT:              TABLED [UNANIMOUS]              Next: 11/15/2016 7:00 PM

MOVER:              Judy Slack, Board Member

SECONDER:              Gloria Towle-Hilt, Board Member

AYES:              Gitto, Barber, Fraterrigo, Hayes, McManus, Rivera, Slack, Towle-Hilt

ABSENT:              Simpson

3.              Board President Action

A.              Board of Education Policy Adoption

The following policies and regulations were adopted:

2120                            School Board Elections             

2120.1                            Candidates and Campaigning

4321.15                            Provision of Special Education Services in the Lease Restrictive Environment Policy

4321.6                            Availability of Alternative Format Instructional Materials for Students with Disabilities Policy

4321.6-R              Availability of Alternative Format Instructional Materials for Students with Disabilities Regulation

4321.7                            Districtwide and Statewide Assessments of Students with Disabilities

4321.9                            Declassification of Students with Disabilities Policy

4321.9-R              Declassification of Students with Disabilities Regulation

4321.10                            Provision of Special Education and Related Services to Students with Disabilities Enrolled in Non-Public Schools

4321.11                            Public Report on Revisions to District Policies, Practices and Procedures upon a Finding of Significant Disproportionality

4321.14                            Special Education Personnel

4531                             Field Trips and Excursions

4531-R                             Field Trips and Excursions Regulation

5152                            Admission of Non-Resident Students


MOVER:              Judy Slack, Board Member

SECONDER:              Gloria Towle-Hilt, Board Member

AYES:              Gitto, Barber, Fraterrigo, Hayes, McManus, Rivera, Slack, Towle-Hilt

ABSENT:              Simpson

Board Committee Reports

Audit Committee

At the October 31 meeting the Committee the following items were discussed:

·         Capital Region BOCES will be doing a Medicaid audit for the district.  This audit will help ensure compliance with Medicaid requirements in the billing for services and maximize revenue for the district through the reimbursement claims process,  

·         Internal Claim Reports were reviewed and approved, and

·         The Charter was reviewed.


The next meeting has not yet been scheduled.


Business Practices Committee

The next Committee meeting has been scheduled for November 3 at 8:45 am in the Superintendent’s office.


Communications Committee

The next Committee meeting has been scheduled for November 8 at 5:45 pm in the District office main conference room.


Policy Committee

The next Committee meeting has been scheduled for November 9 at 5:45 am in the Superintendent’s office.

Board Issues, Ideas and Sharing

Barbara Fraterrigo, Gloria Towle-Hilt and Judy Slack reviewed the workshops they each attended at the Annual NYSSBA Convention and Law Conference.  Some of the different topics they attended included homework and grading consistency, later start times for high school and middle schools, using helmets in sports, transgender issues and strategic planning.   They all stated the workshops were excellent and very inspiring. 


Judy Slack said she went to the long house exhibit at Lynnwood Elementary.  She said it is always a great experience.  Lynnwood has been constructing the long house since 1999.


Judy Slack stated how wonderful it is to see kids encouraging and helping each other during the Farnsworth Middle School’s Road Runner race.