"But if it is believed that these elementary schools will be better managed by...any other general authority of the government, than by the parents within each ward [district], it is a belief against all experience." --Thomas Jefferson

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Dec. 14, 2010 Work Session, Part I: Common Core, Gov. Education Committee

There was so much information presented at this Work Session, that I will be breaking the blog entry up into pieces.  I want to give you the information on what occurred, but also give you my perspective on these important items.

In this blog, I will address the first two items of the work session: Common Core standards and the Governor's Education Committee.

Work Session, 4pm

Common Core

The Utah State Office of Education has opted, along with many other states, to adopt the Common Core Standards.  The Common Core standards were initiated by the National Governors' Association and their Chief State Education Officers.  In Utah, this was Gov. Huntsman and Patti Harrington.  The Common Core only addresses Language Arts and Math.  Barry Graff presented this information.  Here are my notes on the Common Core.

What is the difference between our current core and the common core?

Lang. Arts: The reading difficulty level will increase. There is also a higher expectation of writing and the use of analysis, including a set of standards relating to informational texts. (Informational texts according to one article "is a type of nonfiction that conveys information about the natural or social world.") This common core has much, much, much more emphasis on writing, especially reading and writing informational texts. I think I heard that the Common Core would encourage Kindergarten students to do research work. Published writings will include digital formats.  There will not be as much emphasis on literature; although there will still be some.

Math: There are two big differences. 1) Common Core will do away with the concept of spiraling. (Spiraling is defined as teaching a particular concept at multiple grade levels.) With Common Core, we have a given concept taught at a particular grade level and that's it.  2) Common Core will cut back on the number of concepts taught. It is the idea of more depth instead of breadth.  At the Secondary level, instead of having pre-algebra, algebra, geometry, algerbra 2, etc., the international model is being used that integrates algebra, geometry, etc. into each course.  There will also be an Honors' track that will put additional preparation in for an AP Calculus course.  Also, ASD is looking at creating a 3rd 'Accelerated' track.  Honors would be deeper information and Accelerated would be a faster track.  The hope is that this integrated approach will solve the 'algebra 2 wall' that kids hit after taking a year off of algebra to tackle geometry.  There will have to be in-the-year remediation as there is no 'slow' track. 

Mr. Graff said that it is a good core, and that they don't have any concerns with it.  ASD is going to take a slightly slower time frame for implementation.  The State was hoping to get districts to implement the Common Core this coming year, and ASD will implement in some instances in the 2012-13 school year.  Depending on where students are in their studies, they may or may not be included in Common Core.  For example, a current 7th grade student taking Algebra will continue with the current system through their high school career.  However, a current 7th grade student taking pre-Algebra will switch to Common Core when it is implemented. 

Superintendent Henshaw said that change is good as long as it makes us better.  We will be taking the 2011-12 school year to train our teachers in Common Core.  The Superintendent said that we can't hold teachers accountable if they are not sufficiently trained.

Some concerns raised by the board members were that we currently are more lenient on High School students with partial grading and making things up than are colleges.  It was stated that this is an individual teacher thing, and not a district-wide situation.  It wouldn't apply one way or the other to Common Core.  Another concern was that we would be adopting a European model where kids are tested at a certain point, placed on a track, and that's the end of it.  It is a concern that in a given track, kids may be pushed too fast and end up failing, giving them short shrift. 

Common Core is just being developed and hasn't been tested in its entirety in any area of the US yet.  The question was asked about who would be developing the tests, and the assumption is that the testing will be outsourced to some 'testing' company.  Adopting Common Core and the tests that will become associated with it will probably take the place of current testing standards to accommodate Federal Education mandates. 

My Take on Common Core
Common Core, Math:
First, I agree with the idea of greater depth instead of breadth with math.  One of the reasons I support using Singapore Math is due to their in depth treatment of each basic concept.  For example, my son, when in 5th grade, spent about 5 lessons on decimals and place value (unrelated to fractions).  During the summer, we had spent time doing Singapore, and he had a very good foundation in fractions.  It was then transitioned through 15 lessons to teach decimals.  The 15 lessons were not just boring repetition either.  They were just good, in depth, exercises and discussions so that at the end of 15 lessons, he had a solid foundation in decimals and how they related to fractions. My experience is that we tend to push kids into greater mathematical concepts before they have mastered the basics.  So, I am definitely in favor of this idea.

However, I am concerned with the lack of 'spiraling'.  As I mentioned above, pushing kids to greater math concepts without basic mastery is dooming them to failure.  Math is very much a subject that requires a "line upon line" concept.  If you can't add, you can't learn to subtract, and you can't do algebra.  Repetition and review is very important in math as you continue through the process.  Not having a remedial track or allowing kids to retake things like algebra, is a very big concern for me.  If someone is struggling with algebra, I would certainly like to see them spend whatever time is necessary to master basic, algebraic concepts before moving on.  My personal experience and my assumption is that 'the algebra 2 wall' is not so much that kids aren't using algebra but that they can comprehend geometry without algebra.  They didn't properly master algebra 1, so algebra 2 doesn't make any sense either.  The fact that they've taken a year off of 'algebra' just exacerbates the situation.

Common Core, Language Arts:
While I think informational texts are important, my kids don't sit around reading a lot of informational texts.  They enjoy fiction, literature, and classics.  Reading Narnia or A Christmas Carol is often more fun than reading about volcanoes, especially if you aren't very interested in volcanoes.  Informational texts are very helpful for kids who have an interest in the subject discussed.  Without that interest, I'm afraid we are going to turn kids off to reading.  I applaud the idea of greater writing skills.  However, doing research work, while important, shouldn't be given greater importance than creative writing.  Writing skills can be applied from one to the other.  Like math, good writing requires good understanding of grammar and spelling.  As long as we are developing the ability to write, I don't want to limit the experience to mostly informational texts.

Common Core, In General:
While I need to get more specific information on Common Core, I have a few additional concerns. 

First, where this core is untried and untested, we are turning our children into guinea pigs for the State Office of Education (and the textbook publishers who stand to benefit).  I would prefer to see the results before jumping on the bandwagon. 

Second, the idea of national testing and national comparisions will, inevitably, yield national standards.  From national standards, it is very easy, using testing and teaching to the test, to implement a national curriculum, leaving local control of curriculum out in the cold.  If Utah adopts Common Core, and Common Core, at some point, starts to teach things that Utah doesn't want to include, what are the "opt out" procedures?  How fast will we be able to switch to something we want to teach, once Common Core and the major textbook publishers have incorporated those changes we think unimportant, or, maybe, incorrect.

Governor's Education Committee

Board Member, JoDee Sundburg, has been a member of the Governor's Education Committee.  The main goal from this committee is: by 2020, 66% of Utahns ages 20 - 64 will have a post-secondary degree or certificate.  The reason for this figure is that it is assumed that by 2020, businesses will need that level of expertise to compete.  So, this is what Utah feels it needs to be economically strong at that point in the future. 

There are 5 main items:
  1. Bolster Early Childhood Education
  2. Improve instructional Quality and Curricular Alighments
  3. Strengthen Postsecondary Education
  4. Aligh Educational Attainment and vocational Training with Economic Development
  5. Utilize Technology to Effectively and Efficiently Accomplish Strategic Imperatives
The steps to pursue in 2011, based on cost effectiveness and value that do not impact current per-pupil funding are listed here, near the end of the article. 

My Take on Gov. Education Committee:
I would like to know what percentage of Utahns have a post-secondary degree or certificate currently.  What is the change that needs to take place?  Also, when we have so many people taking college courses, etc., the law of supply and demand will indicate that the value of those degrees will probably decrease. 

While I think it is fine that the Committee has made its recommendations, I do have a concern that the state should be involved at all in incentivizing personal behavior to this level.  Often, on-the-job training is more beneficial than a degree or certificate.  As someone who has hired people in the past, I see education as an indicator of someone's ability, but I would much prefer someone who either has the knowledge/experience already, or who has shown that they can be a self-starter and someone who learns on-the-job.  These things are not always the result of a higher education degree or certificate.

Up Next:
A Proposal for Grading Schools
Report on the Mission Statement from the School Community Councils
Additional Information on the Proposed Bond

Monday, December 27, 2010

Oath of Office

On Tuesday, Jan.4, 2011, I will be taking the oath of office.  I invite everyone who is interested to come.  It is at 6:00 pm at the District Office (575 N. 100 E.) in American Fork and shouldn't be very long. 

The Oath is stipulated in the Utah State Constitution, Article IV, Section 10.  It reads:

I do solomnly swear (or affirm) that I will support, obey and defend the Constitution of the United States and the Constitution of this State, and that I will discharge the duties of my office with fidelity.

In preparation for this oath, I have re-read the US Constitution (including the amendements), and am in the process of reading, for the first time, the Utah State Constitution.  The most interesting thing I have found, so far, is the repetition of the phrase no citizen shall be "deprived of life, liberty or property without due process of law" (US Constitution: Amendments 5 and 14, Utah Constitution, Article 1, Section 7).  Combined with the oath to "discharge the duties of my office with fidelity", I think that places a very large burden on myself and my fellow board members for the fiduciary oversight of the district.  It then follows that without an elected board, our constituents would be taxed without representation, being deprived of "property without due process of law".  Part of the reason for this blog is to give you insight into my thinking, but also to give you a forum for communicating with me.  I am sworn to uphold both the US and the Utah Constitutions.  I plan to consult them frequently in determining how to faithfully discharge my duties as a school board member, in your behalf.  I hope that you, too, will take some time to read through these documents, and judge my performance based on this oath. 

In addition to the oath of office on Jan. 4, we will be voting on the President and Vice-President of the Board.  These officers have no more authority but more responsibility.  The President attends more of the committee meetings, conducts board meetings, and gives the offcial direction from the Board to the Superintendent.  The President is also the only one who is to communicate concerns from the district (i.e. the superintendent) to individual board members.  It is inappropriate for district personnel, including the superintendent, to correct or otherwise instruct a board member.  The Vice-President is there to take over when the president is absent.  Under Utah Law, these elections for board officers must take place in an open meeting, and cannot be done by secret ballot.

Monday, December 20, 2010

Proposed Legislation: Superintendent Retention Election

On Monday, Dec. 13, the Daily Herald reported that a Salt Lake legistlator is proposing to create retention elections for local school superintendents.  At first, I thought it wasn't such a bad idea, since it would require people to be more involved.  (I'm big on that parental involvement stuff).  But then, I thought about our retention elections for judges, and started to dig a bit deeper into all the ramifications.  I would like to give you my input on this, as a newly-elected school board member.

Currently, the locally-elected school board is responsible for interviewing, hiring, reviewing, disciplining and firing the district superintendent.  The superintendent works directly for the school board, and takes his/her direction from them.  The school board, being elected, are to take their marching orders from their constituents.  If you don't like the superintendent, you don't re-elect the board members who made the hire. 

This is an important difference between a republic and a democracy. 

In our republic, everyone does have a voice in choosing their representatives.  This is an important part of the process.  However, we delegate our power of decision-making, in specific areas, to those elected representatives.  In a republic, these representatives become informed, study the issues, and make decisions in the way that best represents their constitutents (and their inalienable rights).  If our representatives are not doing this, we do not need to appeal to higher government to make them do it.  We the People have the power to remove them and replace them with someone who will.  We delegate our power to our representatives because we want to have decisions made thoughtfully and with all the facts.  We think it unreasonable to assume that most voters would want to spend time on the important minutia in order to make an informed decision.    And if the decision is uniformed, then it is unfair. 

The voters, even in a group, have much less power to direct the superintendent once every six years, than 5 or 7 members of a school board that are observing, directing, and evaluating the superintendent on matters great and small nearly every week.  Retention elections might get rid of an unpopular superintendent, but it does nothing for day-to-day management.  The problem isn't the system of boards managing superintendents.  The problem is boards not being accountable to the people who elected them.

In addition to the major structural change in our republican system of government, I offer a few items for your consideration should this proposed legislation become law.

First, the board would become irrelevent at certain times. Currently, the board is "the boss".  However, in light of a retention election, once a board appointed a superintendent, the superintendent would need to balance the direction of the board against popular opinion.  Every major decision would become a political one and might require a focus group.  In essence, the superintendent would have two masters: the board and the public.  Depending on how close it might be to the retention election, the board's direction would be superceded. 

Additionally, if the superintendent took direction from the board, and the board was wrong, would it be fair to punish the superintendent?  Would it not more properly be the board's responsibility?  Should the board not face the people and be accountable to them?

What about confidential matters of personnel or litigation?  Since these, by law, are closed to the public, would those records be opened in order to properly inform voters prior to an election?  And if not, this is a huge area of responsibility for which the superintendent would not be held to account.

With all due respect, the problem with a superintendent is not the superintendent; it is the board.  If you are not pleased with your superintendent, I would argue that you are more accurately not pleased with your board representation.  How much have you been involved and been communicating with your board members?  What input has the board received from you?  What accountability do you have from your board member?  Do they have a website or a blog where they can be held to account by their constitutents?  How closely do your concerns and issues match with your board member?  Do you think they will accurately represent you vis-a-vis the district and the superintendent?

By the same token, if you were asked to vote to retain your superintendent, have you attended board meetings?  Have you reviewed the financials?  (If so, I'd like to enlist your aid.) Does the superintendent accurately follow the board's direction?  If the board has given the superintendent direction that you disagree with, will you vote against retention?

If it were your job on the line, would you rather be judged by someone who sees your work up close and personal, who sets your job description and evaluation points, or by the stockholders of your company, based on reputation alone?

In all fairness, I am just starting to understand the job of the superintendent.  I would not yet find myself qualified to accurately determine the fitness of the superintendent.  In two years (when our superintendent's contract is up), I will have a much better understanding of the responsibilities and qualifications for the job.  In two years, if you continue to read this blog, you, too, will understand the issues in the district, my perspective on them, and the roles the superintendent and the board play in those issues. 

Also, in two years, another set of board members will be up for reelection.  Times have changed.  People are more involved in overseeing their representatives.  I expect, in two years, you will see a lot more websites, cottage meetings, and YouTube videos from those wishing to represent you.  Lawn signs and an endorsement from a friend of a friend of your neighbor's will no longer be enough to win an election. 

But most importantly, I expect, in two years, you will find me accountable to you for the direction the superintendent has taken.  You will then know where I stand, and can properly lay the responsibility on me and my fellow board members.  You have delegated to us the responsibility of making those important decisions, with all the information available.

The system isn't broken, it just isn't being used properly.  We are a constitutional republic.  We elect representatives to buffer the sometimes-transient opinion of the majority.  We are seeing changes at the local level to make board members more accountable.  Hold our feet to the fire.  Make us answer the difficult questions.  And see the beneficial results of a constitutional republic over that of a democracy.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

New Board Member Training

On Saturday, Dec. 4, I attended the New Board Member Training workshop provided by the Utah School Boards Association (USBA) at the Provo Marriott Hotel. 

Until I started running for school board, I was unaware of the USBA, its role or its goals.  For your information, here is what I have learned about USBA.  USBA is an organization recognized by the State as an agency that is representative of the school boards in Utah.  Local school boards are authorized by the state to pay dues and fees for training to USBA.  USBA is also an advocacy group.  ASD is a member of USBA and one of our board members, JoDee Sundberg is the 1st Vice President of the USBA.  In addition to the New Board Member Training, our board will be participating in the USBA Convention January 6-8, the Legislative Day on the Hill (meeting with legislators) on Jan. 28, and a spring and fall training that is provided in regional groups.  We also have 3 delegates that will be assigned to USBA, in addition to a Regional Delegate from our region.  (ASD comprises its own region; whereas other regions comprise multiple school districts.)  And in April, there is a Nation School Board Convention in San Francisco.

Our first workshop was on the legalities of being a board member.  (Another, more in depth, training will be held at the convention in January.)   Education is not a right guaranteed by the US Consitution.  However, the 14th amendment and the Utah Constitution require education for "all children of the state".  Also, the jobs of permanent employees of the district are considered to be property rights, and so, this right cannot be denied without proper due process.  Board Members are protected against personal liability if they are acting as a member of a board with a few exceptions.  Individual board members do not have any ability to make policy or affect change.  It is only as a member of the board, acting according to the board's vote, that any action can be taken.  (This theme was repeated often throughout the day.)

There were 3 work sessions dealing with 1) committees 2) relationship between superintendents and board members 3) managing board meetings.  There was some concern about committees where a board member had run on a particular issue. Would this board member be allowed to vote on that issue without being considered 'prejudicial'?  The advice was if she didn't serve on the advisory committee, she would be fine to vote on the issue.  Committees are to function simply as an advisory body to the board.  They have no authority other than this.  I was told board members can 'make or break' the functioning of the district.  It was emphasized that once a decision is made, board members must be supportive of that decision, even if they disagreed before-hand. The superintendent, also, must follow the decisions of the board, regardless of his/her thoughts on the subject.  Finally, board meetings are for the benefit of the board, but they are held in a public setting.  It was discussed how to manage public comments to provide this opportunity without allowing it to overtake the entire board meeting.

Closed session information was discussed.  These are items about personnel, student discipline, and litigation.  All discussions in closed session are private.  However, any action that is to be taken on a closed session issue must be taken in the open portion of a board meeting. 

We also had a role-playing session. 
1. Board Member disagrees with the cell phone policy, votes against it, and the board approves it.  There was a bit of disagreement as to whether the board member should allow her friends and associates to know that she disagreed with the policy.  The preferred response was to support the policy, saying that it was a pilot program that she was going to follow and see how it goes.

2. Teacher is arrested and a board member is contacted by the press.  The preferred answer is to refer the reporter to the designated district media specialist.

3. Board member wanders around a school without notifying the principal.  It is preferable to ALWAYS call the principal to let him/her know you are coming to the school, even if for something non-board related, e.g. assisting in your child's classroom.

I was left with the follow mantra for board meetings: "Know Before You Go".  In other words, no surprises at board meetings.  If you have questions, call the Superintendent prior to the meeting and get all your questions answered.

On Thursday, Dec. 7, I spent the morning at the district office, getting more specifics on how ASD operates.

Our Mission, Vision, Values, and Goals (MVVG) drive what happens in the schools and filter the decisions that are made onto our Areas of Focus (goals).  This means that the community can trust us with their children/grandchildren and their taxes because we are founded on principles not processes.

ASD also uses a cutting-edge governance model called collaboration.  Most traditional models do not involve board members in district-specific decisions until much later in the process.  With the collaborative model, we are involved much sooner in the process and have the opportunity to contribute and see the overall process.  This process involves no separation between the Superintendent and the Board.  We work together.  It also gets the public more involved in the process, often via the District Community Council (DCC).  The DCC is representative of the ideas and opinions in the public.  We were told of 2 experiences where public hearings were held and there wasn't a single idea that was presented at those public hearings that had not already been reflected in prior DCC meetings.  (Board Members rotate attendance at the DCC meetings that occur every 2 months.) 

The main theme was one of trust--we need to trust each other as board members, as well as the district administration.  A big concern is making private conversations public via blogs, etc. 

We also discussed how communications to the board occur, what our current policies and procedures are. Board Members and the district must follow approved policies until such time as the board changes those policies.

It was pointed out that a lot of people think the board rubber-stamps the district administation.  However, due to the collaborative governance model, the board has been involved in multiple meetings, and has had input from the get-go.  At the point an action is taken in board meeting, it has already been discussed, dissected, reviewed, etc. 

Finally, we spent some time with the Business Administrator, getting an overview of the finances of the district.  The Utah Taxpayers Association (2008 data) shows ASD spends the most per student on teachers and in-classroom expenses compared to other districts in Utah, and the least in administrative overhead.  Our revenue comes from the following sources:
72.4% from the State in the form of Income Taxes
18.25% in the form of property taxes
7.84% from the Feds
1.54% from interest, fees, etc.

An interesting chart shows how much per student we have in assessed property value compared to other districts.  The greater the assessed value per student, the less the property tax rates need to be.  Park City has a very high assessment ($2M/student), whereas ASD has $282,184/student.  The state average is $410,151/student.

I have to say these training have been well-prepared, and helpful for showing current practices.

Friday, December 10, 2010

Agenda for Dec. 14, 2010 Work Session and Board Meeting

Board Meeting/Work Session
Dec. 14, 2010--District Office

More information on the documents to be presented and discussed can be downloaded here.  Verify that the meeting information listed is for Dec. 14.


4:00 P.M.

The purpose of the study session will be to share information and updates on current issues; i.e.,

Common Core State Standards, Governor’s Education Excellence Commission, Grading

Schools, MVVG (Mission, Vision, Values, Goals) Feedback, and Growth Needs.


6:00 P.M.

AGENDA ITEMS Introduced by

PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE Debbie Taylor, Board President





CLAIMS NOVEMBER Vernon Henshaw, Superintendent


1. Budget Report Vernon Henshaw, Superintendent

2. Personnel Reports “

3. Alpine Foundation Report “

4. Student Releases – MA, TA, AB, SB, SB



DO, DP, AP, SR, KR, NR, JS, SS, JS, KW, AW “

5. Student Expulsions – CH, SS “

6. Student Reinstatement – CH “

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Nov. 30, 2010 Board Meeting

I attended the Work Session, Dedication, Board Meeting and Closed Session on Tuesday (Nov. 30).  Everything took place at Orem High School. 

Work Session 
The process behind the bond and the enrollment projections were discussed.  Some of the considerations for the bond were the Tax Rate Increase, the New Building costs, and the 5-year Capital Improvement costs. 

The 5-year Capital Improvements deal with updating older schools to meet, for example, seismic codes, repair roofing, etc.  The 4 schools proposed in the 5-year Capital Improvement suggestions were all constructed in 1959.  No details on what the improvements would be at this point.  Many of these things will be discussed with maintenance and principals before being approved.  At this time, it is hoped that the bond will provide $100 million for upgrading these 4 schools.

Currently, ASD has 66,100 students.  By 2015, it is projected that we will have in the neighborhood of 78,000 students.  Superintendent Henshaw pointed out a handful of elementary schools (page 23).  He showed that Cedar Ridge currently has 131 Kindergarten students and 157 6th graders.  Since there are less Kindergarten students than 6th graders, it is assumed that the school will be able to continue to adequately acommodate those students coming in through the 6th grade.  However, Pony Express has 248 Kindergartners and only 196 6th-graders, implying that in the next 6 years, the school will need to accommodate many more students than it does currently.  (We discussed the following schools specifically: Cedar Ridge, Eaglecrest, Fox Hollow, Freedom, Harvest, Hidden Hollow, Meadow, Mountain Trails, Pony Express, Ridgeline, Sage Hills, Saratoga Shores, Snow Springs, and Traverse Mountain.) Also, in looking at schools in close proximity with similar numbers, it is assumed that more elementary and maybe junior high schools will need to be built. From a very non-committed perspective, it was discussed that 4 more elementary schools and 1 junior high should be built using the proposed bond money in the subsequent 5 years.  Those schools showing the most growth are mostly in the Lehi/Eagle Mountain/Saratoga Springs area.  It is hoped that the bond would provide $110 million for this new construction.  It was stated that the new construction figure was pretty solid, so any amount the bond was reduced would need to come out of the capital improvement monies.

Also, in looking at the tax rate, it was stated that for the average home ($230,000), a bond in the neighborhood of $200 million would be a tax increase of about $15/year.  The state legislature has set ASD's debt limit at one billion dollars.  Currently, we have about $400 million in debt, and are paying it off at the rate of $30 million/year. Most of the ASD bonds are 15-year bonds, and it is assumed that about every 5 or 6 years, we will retire a portion of that debt and be able to bond for additional capital additions or improvements.  Directly after the meeting, I learned the board could set aside monies for future projects, instead of bonding.  They had looked at this in the past (paying for new construction on a cash-basis).  The assessment is this method would work for elementary schools, but the costs of building secondary schools were too high to be able to do this.  I asked about building schools without as many amenities to accommodate the funding, and was told we could also do that, but the district had surveyed people in the past, and the people wanted secondary schools with all the amenities.

Orem High School was dedicated.  It was fun to receive a copy of the original program from 1956 when the school was first dedicated.  The story is that when they were moving things from the old building to the new one, they found a box of these old programs.

Student Body President, Corin Byers conducted.   There were performances from the Jazz Band and the A Capella Choir, speeches from the Principal, the Governor, Administrator Sam Jarman, and Board Member Terry Peterson.  Board President, Debbie Taylor, offered the dedicatory prayer.  I found it a very nice dedication.

Board Meeting
Orem HS teacher, Neil Johnson was recognized for being the 2010 Utah English Teacher of the Year.  He has been teaching for 42 years. 
There were a few committee reports. 

Board Members JoDee Sundberg and Terry Petersen, along with Superintendent Henshaw, met with newly elected Utah Speaker-of-the-House Becky Lockhart.  JoDee mentioned their desire to keep programs like the current, optional extended-day kindergarten funded, as well as putting 'teacher pensions back above the line'.  JoDee also mentioned that they had met with the Orem City Council who had expressed approval for a letter published in the Daily Herald by Rhonda Bromley, spokesperson for ASD. 

Board Member Chrissy Hanneman had met with the District Community Council.  She expressed a feeling of enthusiasm from the council toward the upcoming bond and a desire from them to do more to help.  They, too, expressed support for Mrs. Bromley's letter.

Board Member Guy Fugal discussed the high school 3A and 4A ratings. 

The meeting was adjourned into a closed session.  The new board members, John Burton, Paula Hill, and myself, were invited to attend, as the matters discussed would, most certainly, not be resolved within the next month before we are to be sworn in.  Closed session items are those of a confidential nature.  I found the information interesting and helpful.