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5-20 School Board Approves Contract for Abingdon Renovation and Addition Project


NEWS
RELEASE

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For Immediate Release:
May 20, 2016
For more information, contact the Dept. of School and Community Relations at 703-228-6004 www.apsva.us
  
  School Board Approves Contract for Abingdon Renovation and Addition Project
School Board Also Appoints Four Administrators to Department of Instruction
 
The Board approved the appointments of four administrators in the Department of Instruction, including Dr. Tara Nattrass as Assistant Superintendent, Tyrone Byrd as Director of Secondary Education, Samuel Klein as Supervisor of the ESOL/HILT Office, and Dr. Theresa Adkins as Supervisor of the Minority Achievement Office. The Board also approved the appointment of assistant principals at Gunston Middle School and Abingdon Elementary School. More information is available in the news release.

PUBLIC HEARING:
A public hearing was held to hear comments on the Superintendent’s Proposed FY 2017-26 CIP. The School Board has made no decisions yet, but is expected to adopt the final FY 2017-26 CIP on June 17. Additional information is available in the APS Capital Improvement Update dated May 18, 2016.

MONITORING ITEMS:
Security Update – Facilities staff provided information about school security measures that are being used to ensure student safety. The tactics include the partnership with School Resource Officers at schools, improvements to school radio emergency communications, updates to school floor plans, upgrades to school security cameras that include first responder access, school bus cameras, and bus stop-arm cameras. The full report is available online.

Professional Development Program Evaluation Summary – Staff reported on the findings from the program evaluation. The evaluation feedback indicated that APS offers high-quality professional development for instructional staff. These findings suggested the need for a stronger systematic approach to professional development, as there is a wide variation in the quality and equity of professional development opportunities. Staff are already moving to the recommendations and plan to align professional development with strategic goals and priorities, and improve coordination of professional development across the organization. This work will be done in partnership with Human Resources and the newly formed Redesigning Professional Development Work Group, as directed by the School Board. The next steps are to gather student, family and community feedback on the evaluation, conduct a professional learning policy review, and pilot professional development delivery models that represent best practices. The full presentation is available online.

ACTION ITEMS:
Revision to School Board Policies – The Board approved minor revisions to policies on Political Activity, Substance Abuse, and Employee Recognition. Detailed information is available online.

Abingdon Construction Contract Award – The Board approved the contract award recommendation to Hess Construction Company for a total of $21,728,250 and a total project budget of $31,976,530 for the Abingdon Elementary School Renovation and Addition project. The full presentation is available online.

INFORMATION ITEMS:
FY 2016 3rd Quarter Fiscal Monitoring Report
– Staff provided a summary of projected revenues and expenditures, as of March 31, 2016. Staff project $6.6 million in funds available from operational savings and $7.1 million from a bond premium, for a total of $13.7 million. The Superintendent recommended investments in professional development, student activity needs, safety and security, and $7.1 million for capital improvement projects.

Revision of School Board Policy 10-14 Legal Representation – Proposed edits to this policy update references to outside legal counsel, rather than the Arlington County Attorney, with the School Board reviewing the contract for engagement of legal counsel annually. Additional language also provides for hiring of specialized legal counsel where necessary, with the advice and oversight by APS legal counsel.

Revision of School Board Policy 40-1.19 Financial Management – Use of School Facilities – Proposed changes to the policy would give priority to organizations that support APS and adds a new policy implementation procedure (PIP) that includes requirements which protect APS and students. The PIP will require all vendors that rent school facilities to undergo a criminal background check, ensure that PTAs adhere to all operational requirements and that vendors provide revenue-sharing with schools. Parent volunteers offering activities would be cleared at no cost, and PTAs will not be able to benefit financially from sponsoring vendors.

RECOGNITION:
The School Board meeting began with recognition of this year’s Connect with Kids Champions. The recognition program is sponsored by the Arlington Partnership for Children, Youth and Families.

Citizens who want to comment on any of the items discussed at the School Board meeting should email the Board at school.board@apsva.us or call 703-228-6015.

Citizens may call 703-228-2400 on the Monday after the School Board meetings to listen to a meeting summary. School Board meetings are also broadcast live on Comcast Cable Channel 70 and Verizon FiOS Channel 41; live-streamed on the APS website, and re-broadcast on Fridays at 9 p.m. and Mondays at 7:30 p.m. immediately following the meeting. All materials and minutes of the meeting will be posted to the website at www.apsva.us/schoolboard upon School Board approval at a subsequent meeting.

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