Savannah-Chatham County Public School System

Highlights from the December 11, 2019 Board Meeting

Published on: 12/12/2019

​Academic Calendar for School Year 2020-2021 Approved
The Board approved the calendar for next school year that takes into consideration multiple constraints and stakeholder feedback. The calendar also considers the timing of state testing windows and ensures logical breaks are taken to provide maximum student preparation for assessment periods. The proposed 2020-2021 calendar contains the following components:

  • A mid-week school start date of Wednesday, August 5, 2020
  • Teachers return in late July
  • 180 Instructional School Days
  • Staff planning days are scheduled throughout the school year (Oct., Jan., Feb.)
  • Limits Post Planning Days
  • Creates a Fall Break (Long weekend in October)
  • Major breaks are scheduled with state assessments in mind
  • Includes a Veteran’s Day Holiday for All
  • Full Thanksgiving week
  • Two-week Winter Break
  • Staff Planning Day scheduled before start of Second Semester
  • Spring break is scheduled later in March and in the first part of April (Outside of St Patrick’s Day week)
  • Eliminates Early Dismissal Days
  • School ends before Memorial Day

To see the 2020-21 SY Calendar:

HUB Transportation Survey Results
At the Informal Meeting of the Board, Deputy Superintendent Vanessa Miller-Kaigler presented the Board with the results of a parent survey regarding the HUB Transportation Plan for Choice Program high school students in the 2020-21 School Year. The survey included questions designed to determine the impact on families and Choice Program enrollment. More information on the HUB Transportation Plan can be found at More information on survey results presented to the Board can be found at this link:

HUB Transportation Plan to Be Delayed
Over the course of the implementation phase for this initiative, staff have developed operational procedures, analyzed cost, surveyed parents, held public meetings, and extensively reviewed all functions of the Pupil Transportation department. At this time, District Administration believes the launch of a HUB Transportation System in the 2020-2021 School Year will not satisfy all of the intended goals of the program and more time is needed to ensure all deliverables are met to include student and staff safety, ride time efficiency, cost variables, and staffing needs. A resolution to delay the HUB Transportation system, to allow further study of the Hub Transportation System approach and other methods for delivering cost efficiencies within Pupil Transportation was offered and supported by the Board. Administration continues to review all aspects of efficiencies for improving the cost of Pupil Transportation. The HUB Transportation System for Choice Program High School students will not be launched in the 2020-2021 school year to allow continued study and review of cost saving methods.

Budget Process Workshop
Also at the Informal Meeting of the Board of Education, Board Members were presented a report on plans for building the 2021 SY Budget. The Budget’s main areas of focus will include:
✓ Continued Financial Stability – Increase Fund Balance
✓ State Budget Cuts
✓ Governor’s Promised Salary Increases
✓ Teachers Retirement Fund (Decrease – Employer Rate 21.14% to 19.06% in FY 2021)
✓ Modified Compensation Plan - Year 4
✓ Cost Sharing (Transportation, School Food Service, etc.)

For more information on the process and timeline:

Board Resolution: Charter School Transportation Services Cost Sharing
The Board approved a resolution that implements a Cost Sharing Approach for Charter School Transportation beginning in the 2020-2021 School Year. A Cost Per Child fee will be determined and used to identify each participating Charter School’s Cost Sharing Obligation.

Legislative Priorities Approved
Following discussion during the November 6, 2019, Board of Education meeting, and presentation and discussion with members of the Chatham County Delegation during the Board’s Annual Legislative Breakfast held on December 10, 2019, the 2020 Legislative Priorities were presented for Board approval in advance of full dissemination with the Chatham County Delegation.

Tybee Maritime Expansion Request Approved
The Board of Education approved the request by Tybee Island Maritime Academy for a charter contract amendment to allow the school to expand into the middle grades. District Staff had raised concerns over declining CCRPI Scores which led to a recommendation for denial, but after that agenda item failed, a motion was introduced to support the request and it was approved.

Sharing the Good News!

The Superintendent’s Student of the Month for November is Pe’Lae Massey a Senior from Johnson High School. Pe’lae is the recipient of the Georgia Certificate of Merit Academic Excellence Award. She is the vice president of Johnson’s DECA club and a member of their Model United Nations team. Outside of the classroom, she serves as the athletic trainer assistant, soccer team student manager, and the girls’ basketball team student manager. She plans to attend college after graduation and aspires to a career in cyber security. Congratulations, Pe’lae!

New Student of the Month Community Partner: E. Shaver Booksellers
The Savannah-Chatham County Public School System is proud to announce a community partner who has stepped up to enhance our Student of the Month program! Jessica Osborne from E. Shaver Booksellers was on hand to share her passion for literacy and the love of reading! Thank you, Jessica and team.

SCCPSS is a Leading Edge Award Winner!
The Savannah-Chatham County Public School System has been named a recipient of the GSBA inaugural Leading Edge Award for 2019. The Georgia School Board Association developed the award to recognize school districts that are demonstrating innovative practices and programs by governance teams, ensuring students are competitive in an ever-changing global market. School districts throughout the state were invited to apply by highlighting work in one of the eight components of the Georgia Vision Project. Our district applied in the Early Learning and Student Success component.

Portman’s Holiday Donation
The Savannah-Chatham County Public School System is fortunate to have the support of our community especially during the holiday season. Today, we would like to spotlight the importance of the arts and the value of music in education. Each year Portman’s Music Store offers a musical donation for students of our District. This is especially apropos as we celebrate the Superintendent’s Gala for the Arts on Friday, December 13th.

Superintendent’s Professional Senate Report
The SCCPSS Teacher of the Year and Instructional Support Person of the Year presented a report from the latest Professional Senate Meeting.

Staff from Facilities and Operations Presented the Board with updates on projects throughout the District. Those updates included:

  • New parking lot at Jenkins HS completed
  • A look at progress on the building pad for the new school at Jenkins HS, and excavation work for the Beach High Auditorium project and the New Hampstead K8.

For a look at the complete report:

Jacob G. Smith Elementary Design Services Contract Approved
The Board approved a contract with JW Buckley and Associates for Design Services for the J.G. Smith Elementary School project under RFQ C18-05 "On-Call" Architectural and Engineering Services (Annual Contract) in the total amount of $199,914.

Woodville Tompkins Gyms Construction and Auditorium Renovation
The Board approve the award of Bid C20-12 (ESPLOST) Woodville-Tompkins High School Gym Construction and Auditorium Renovation to TQ Constructors, Inc. at a total cost of $11,386,000.00.

Policy First Reads

Policy JGCD and Administrative Regulation JGCD-R –Medication (Four Year Review)
Pursuant to Board Policy BDE - Policy Review, District Administration has reviewed Board Policy JGCD – Medication along with the supporting regulation and has determined a need for changes.

Policy ECH and Administrative Regulation ECH-R – Authorized Uses of Equipment and Supplies (Four Year Review)
Pursuant to Board Policy BDE - Policy Review, District Administration has reviewed Board Policy ECH – Authorized Uses of Equipment and Supplies along with the supporting regulation and has determined a need for changes.

Policy JBCBA and Administrative Regulation JBCBA-R, Tuition (Mid Period Review)
District Administration has reviewed Board Policy JBCBA and Administrative Regulation JBCBA-R and is recommending revisions to align the policy and regulation regarding tuition charges for children of full-time employees of the SCCPSS who reside in the state of Georgia.

Policy DCI – Budget Line Item Transfer Authority (Mid Period Review)
District Administration has reviewed Board Policy DCI and is recommending revisions to Board Policy DCI to include Budget Amendments in the Transfer and Amendment Authority Table.

Policy Adoptions

Policy GAN-Employee Tobacco Use (Mid Period Review)
District Administration reviewed Board Policy GAN and recommended certain revisions.
Employees are prohibited from using tobacco products (including smokeless tobacco, e-cigarettes, or electronic nicotine delivery systems and vaping products) while they are acting in their official capacity as Savannah Chatham County Board of Education employees, while they are engaged in activities which are under the auspices of the Savannah Chatham County Board of Education; or while they are representing the Savannah-Chatham County Public School System.

Policy GBRJ, Administrative Regulation GBRJ-R – Arrangement for Substitutes (Four Year Review)
Pursuant to Board Policy BDE-Policy Review, District Administration has reviewed Board Policy GBRJ-Arrangement for Substitutes along with the supporting regulation and has determined a need for changes. Substitute teachers shall be provided during the absence of regular teachers. When a teacher in grades Pre-K12 is absent, a qualified substitute, as defined by the Georgia Professional Standards Commission Rule 505-2.20, should be obtained.

Upcoming Calendar Items

The 6th annual Holiday Classic Basketball Tournament begins Wednesday, December 18th. See for schedules and brackets.

Beginning December 23, 2019 through December 31, 2019 and January 2-3, 2020,
208 Bull Street will be closed and will reopen on Monday, January 6, 2019.

Wednesday, January 15, 2020
11:00 AM – Informal Session Meeting (Executive Session immediately following)
2:00 PM – Regular Board Meeting - Whitney Administrative Complex

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