Windham Southeast School District (WSESD) Policy and Amendment Committee Meeting Minutes

Note: These minutes should be considered preliminary until they are approved at the next Policy and Amendment Committee meeting.
Windham Southeast School District (WSESD) Policy and Amendment Committee

Wednesday, May 8, 2024
Regular meeting 2:00 pm

Hybrid meeting: WSESU Central Office, 53 Green St., Brattleboro, VT and

Remotely via Zoom


Policy and Amendment Committee members present: Deborah Stanford (DS, Chair), Tim Maciel (TM), Anne Beekman (AB)

WSESD/U Staff and Administrators present: Superintendent Mark Speno (MS), Mo Hart (MH), Paul Smith (PS), Shannon Kelly (SK)

Call to Order

DS convened the meeting at 2:09 pm and read the hybrid statement.

I. Approval of Minutes and confirmation of next meeting date

The minutes of 04/10/24 meeting approved by assent.

The Policy and Amendment Committee meets on second and fourth Wednesdays, from 2-4 pm at the WSESU Central Office and on Zoom. The next meetings are scheduled for:
May 22, 2024
June 12, 2024

II. Mandate as per 4/9/24 minutes:

“A recommendation was made to return [consideration of PD] to the Policy Committee to determine what exactly the ask is of the Administration as related to reporting about PD to the WSESD Board.” (D2 Professional Development). Reference 4/9 SD Minutes,
page 2.

• The Board discussion on 4/9 asked that the Policy and Amendment Committee get into the nuts and bolts of what the PD annual report (as proposed in D2) should include.
• TM shared a list of potential material that the PD annual report might cover. He will send the list to the committee.
• PD is included in the formal monthly reports to the Board, but the D2 would require a summative end-of-year report.
• The discussion of the PD annual report is on hold until May 22.

III. Policies
F1 Student Conduct and Discipline
• Updates:
o MS reviewed F1 with the Vernon Board and it was well received.
o MS shared F1 with principals and asked them to share it with student leadership groups. He will check for feedback at Friday’s full Admin meeting.
o No formal feedback has been obtained from students.
• F1 is on hold until 5/22/24, awaiting feedback from MS and resolution of text corruption issues within the document. Ideally, F1 will go to a first reading after the next meeting.

E14 Environmental Awareness and Responsibility
• Updates:
o MS shared E14 with Hannah to share with the science department but has not heard feedback.
o Frank reviewed E14 and said it looked good.
• The last paragraph was discussed and the following revision agreed upon: “The superintendent or designee(s) will ensure that the elements of this policy are included in other annual reports to the board, specifically through the finance and curriculum departments.”
• With this edit in place, E14 will go for first reading on 5/28/24.

D4 Educator Supervision and Evaluation: Probationary Teachers
• MS emphasized the importance of #4 under Implementation: “Educator evaluations will be carried out in accordance with the guidelines set forth in the Master Agreement Article XVI.”
• Committee continued discussion on educator performance feedback from students and caregivers, #3 at the bottom of page 1.
o ADD: “from a diverse group of students…”

• Committee reviewed the proposed edits to the section on Probationary Teachers and discussed “lawful reason” and “just and sufficient cause.”
o MS will send D4 to Pietro to get a legal perspective on that wording.

• D4 is on hold awaiting Pietro’s feedback.

G16 Class Size Policy
• PS reported that there is activity at the state level that may impact G16. He will be working with Frank on this.
• G16 is on hold pending news from the state level.

G13 Acceptable Use of Electronic Resources & the Internet
• Committee had the chance to look at a legible draft, without strike outs.
• Discussion focused on AI.
o Some other districts have AI policies. The VSBA has not (yet?) sent a model policy about AI.
o G13 is a policy that is going to change as the technology changes.
o No movement to include AI in G13 at this point.
• Cross references reviewed and “As of date of adoption” added for legal references.
• G13 will go for a first reading on 5/28.

F4 Searches, Seizures, and Interrogation of Students by School Personnel and F5 Searches, Seizures, and Interrogation of Students by Law Enforcement Personnel or Other Non-School Personnel
• Updates:
o MS reached out to Norma Hardy and Jeremy Evans at the Brattleboro Police Department. Evans reviewed F4 and F5 and confirmed they look fine from police department perspective.
o Tim Venton, safety officer at the high school, had no edits.
• F4 and F5 will go for a first reading on 5/28.

IV. Proposed Policy — Gender Freedom in Schools
• Committee read and discussed the Professional Development and Implementation section, two paragraphs on page three.
o Questions focused on how PD works for contracted staff like bus drivers and food service. It is up to the bus company to train its personnel, but when there are complaints, the district sometimes has to step in and give feedback to the bus company.

o MS noted that the transportation contract and food service contract were on the agenda for the SU meeting that evening and PD questions relevant to the proposed policy could be folded into the discussion.

V. Administrative conversations
• TM and SK will work on a list of policies with PD requirements and a parallel list of policies with an annual report to the Board.
• The committee will continue working through the policies that have not been revisited since they were approved en masse in 2019.
• MH noted that updating administrator names, as points of contact, is another thing that has to happen annually.
• The committee needs to look at the LSPs and go through the process to get them deleted. But the PD and annual report lists take priority
Meeting adjourned at 4 pm.
Notes taken by Anna Monders (recorder)
Submitted by Anne Beekman (vice chair)

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