Board Meeting Minutes December 13, 2012

Regular board meeting – Dec. 13, 2012

 

Board Members Present:  Andrea, Genevieve, Alex, Brad, Michael, Tiffany, Mark, Shelley, Casey

Board Members Absent:  None

Others in attendance:  Dawn

 

The meeting was called to order at 6:25 pm.

 

Mark Ravenaugh had two proposals that he presented over the summer at a board work session.  One proposal related to staff opportunities to for travel to see other schools that we could learn from to strengthen our program at Springwater.  The board voted all in favor of granting “mini-grants” to teachers if they submitted their ideas to the board for approval. Faith submitted the first proposal to do a four-school garden tour in April.  Faith, Mr. Jon and Kacey Rae will travel to Pleasant Valley, U.S. Fish and Wildlife, Walt Morney Middle School, and Springwater Trail H.S. to learn more about their programs.

 

The board budgeted $1500 for the year for these mini-grants.  Wendy and Jon are also planning to take a class in writing.  Faith will be taking a reading class.  In the future, the teachers are also interested in the Eco-Camp in Costa Rico.  This will, of course, be more expensive, so the board will have to look at any proposed costs.

 

The board discussed the importance of continuing to communicate to families what Springwater’s program is – and is not – to help attract families for whom the school is a good match, and avoid families who are simply looking for “something else.”  The board discussed tracking the success of graduating students and involving alumni in on-campus events.  The board was in agreement that it needed to continue: 1) To communicate out the school’s achievements and successes;  2) Acknowledge that we are still a young, and that while there will continue to be problems and challenges, it is our response to these as an organization that will strengthen us, as opposed to trying for an “instant fix-it.”

 

Strong Components:

  • Blended classrooms
  • Less isolation
  • Strong teachers
  • Capstone (research has to mean something to kids)
  • Pre-Capstone (better and different)
  • Outdoor School (need to be meaningful and impressive and tie back to curriculum)
  • Multi-year aspect of outdoor school
  • Evening of Excellence
  • Scrip to raise money for outdoor school
  • Student Council
  • Cross-age activities (older/younger buddies)
  • Project Walks
  • Students running Thursday morning meetings
  • Strong integrated units
  • Artist in Residence program
  • Friday field studies
  • Garden instruction with Kasey Rae
  • Strong community building activities

 

Mark talked about a $100,000 sponsor, and ideas of what we could do with it.  The board brainstormed longer-term goals for program and facility.

 

Alex stated that she felt it was always important to continue with some form of the State of the School.   Having a video to tell the story would be very effective.

 

Principal’s Report:

* Update on the Capstone program so far this year.

* Update on implementation of the behavioral program and its successes, including fewer behavior problems and referrals.

* Planning for the auction and ideas for rites of passage for each of the grades.

 

The meeting adjourned at 9:20 pm.