Savannah-Chatham County Public School System

Highlights from the November 7, 2018 Board Meeting

Published on: 11/8/2018

​​Board Approves Waiver of school make-up day/Staff work day for school closure on October 11, 2018
On Thursday, October 11, 2018, students missed a day of instruction due to emergency weather conditions associated with Hurricane Michael. State law provides for local discretion regarding the make-up of lost school days when four days or less are missed due to certain emergency conditions.

Administration reviewed the conditions surrounding the loss of instruction and staff time on October 11th and recommended that the board waive the make-up day for students and staff.

For a link to the District work calendars, please click here.

DAS Report: 1.C.1: Postsecondary Accelerated Options
At the Informal Meeting, Board Members received a report on Postsecondary Accelerated Options in our schools. Key points include:

In SY 2017-18, 1,757 students successfully completed one or more AP, IB, or dual enrollment courses. The district’s PAO completion rate was 20% -- a 1 point decline from last year and 3 points below the SY 2017-18 target of 23%.

While most PAO completion is within the Advanced Placement option, the number of students completing dual enrollment has more than doubled over the past three years.

Sixty-two percent (62%) of all AP exams were scored at 3 or higher, reflecting a gain of 11 points over last year. For the first time in the past three years, SCCPSS surpassed both the state and global AP exam success rate. To read the entire report click here:

Safety and Security!
Also at the Informal Meeting of the Board, Campus Police provided their monthly safety and security update. The update included information on School Safety Taskforce meetings held at schools throughout the district this fall, along with an update on grants recently awarded to Campus Police that will help safety and security improvement efforts throughout the district. View the entire report here:

In addition, at the Regular Meeting of the Board, two contracts were approved for the construction of six security vestibules to be built at two elementary schools, two middle schools and two high schools in the district. The addition of vestibules to older facilities help to bring the security level at those schools in line with that of newer facilities that have been constructed with the vestibules as part of the design.

At the Informal Meeting, Chief Finance Officer Larry Jackson offered the Board an update on the Tax Anticipation Note approved at the October Board Meeting.

Sharing the Good News!The Superintendent’s Student of the Month for October was announced! Congratulations to Shawn Bulloch – a 7th grader from the STEM Academy at Bartlett.

Gold Level Golden Radish Award
The School Nutrition Program of the Savannah-Chatham County Public School System received a Golden Radish Award at the Gold level for the district’s Farm to School efforts! The Golden Radish Award publicly recognizes Georgia school districts for best practices in farm to school programs.

Finance Meritorious Budget Award
The Association of School Business Officials (ASBO) International has awarded the Savannah-Chatham County Public School System’s Finance Division a 2018-19 Meritorious Budget Award for excellence in budget presentation.

Community Partner Spotlight: SCAD/HP Printers Donation
Savannah-Chatham County Public Schools could not succeed without the assistance of our valued community partners. At the November Meeting of the Board of Education we recognized two of those partners for a very generous donation they’ve made to our schools. The Savannah College of Art and Design has donated six Hewlett Packard (HP) Designjet large format, high quality printers to the district. The donation was facilitated by an HP employee and SCCPSS parent in support of the district’s visual arts, engineering and scientific project-based learning. HP is also donating training time for equipment set up and use.

Savannah High Celebrating 100 Years of Accreditation!
We are celebrating a very special anniversary this year – 100 years of continuous accreditation for Savannah High School! Principal Tammy Broadnax had the opportunity to receive a certificate and banner from AdvancED marking the occasion at a ceremony last week. Savannah High School was first accredited in 1918 and has maintained this standard of excellence for 100 years.

Audit Committee Members Recognized for their Dedicated Service
The Savannah-Chatham County Public School System Audit Committee provides oversight of the District’s financial reporting and accounting practices, review of the adequacy of internal accounting and control systems, and review of the systems and processes for meeting Board goals. Part of this process involves an engaged community to serve as members of the Board’s Audit Committee. The Board expressed appreciation and gratitude to members:

• Geoffrey Alls: Committee Chair from January 2015 – April 2018 (continues to serve on the committee)

• Julie Gerbsch: Committee Member from October 2013 – December 2017

• Dr. Frances Purcell: Committee Member from September 2012 – December 2018

• Joe Steffen: Committee Member from April 2015 – August 2018

American Education Week!
The Board recognizes the week of November 12-16, 2018, as American Education Week, stating that public schools are the foundation of our neighborhoods and communities, bringing together adults and children, educators and volunteers, business leaders, and elected officials for a common purpose - equipping young Americans with both practical skills and broader intellectual abilities, giving them hope for, and access to, a productive future.

Retired Educator’s Day!
The Board proclaimed November 4, 2018, Retired Educators Day, and encouraged all citizens continue to honor our retired educators throughout the month of November.

Legislative Priorities Approved!
The Board approved a list of Legislative Priorities in advance of the 2019 Legislative Session. Those Priorities include:

  • Ensure educational legislation allows for an adequate delay of at least one-year prior to implementation, thereby allowing for effective implementation and time for adjustments.
  • Any mandate provided by state government should be funded by the state in a manner that does not impose financial burden on local school districts.
  • Increase Quality Basic Education (QBE) Funding Formula: We urge the General Assembly to modify the existing QBE formula that was developed in 1984 to properly account for current cost realities. The QBE shall be indexed yearly for increases in inflation.
  • Relief from Unfunded Mandates associated with Increased Cost of the State Health Benefit Plan and the Teachers Retirement System of Georgia.
  • Funding Priorities to include:
    • School Safety
    • Decrease the ratio of school counselors to students from 1 in every 450 to 1 in every 250, as is nationally recommended.
    • Provide adequate state funding to increase the starting salaries for Georgia teachers
    • Increases in Pre-K program funding that will ensure greater access to early childhood programs by adding Pre-K classes in Georgia schools. Further, we support the restoration of funding to improve state salary schedules for Pre-K Teachers.
    • Full funding of transportation costs for all students.

To view the complete list, follow this link:

First Reads!

Policy IEDA – Unstructured Break Time
The Board continues to review policies surrounding unstructured break time. At the November 7, 2018 meeting the Board was presented a revised policy including new language to define unstructured breaks, establish a recommended length of time for recess, further define reasons for withholding unstructured breaks, and establish certain communication protocols. These changes were recommended following the October 24, 2018 meeting of the Wellness Committee.

Administrative Regulation JBC-R – School Admissions has been modified to provide greater clarity in Phase 3 of the Admissions to Choice Programs section and the Administrative Placement Procedures section related to denial letters.

Renewal Petition – Savannah Classical Academy Charter School
Upon the recommendation of the Superintendent, the Board approved the Charter renewal petition for the Savannah Classical Academy, with the condition that the processing of certain human resources and finance system transactions be moved back to the school district in time for the start of the 2019-2020 school year. This approval shall be effective July 1, 2019, for a period of 5 years.

DAS Goal 5, Objective G – Use of Audits
As required by the District Accountability System, a report on the use of Audits as of June 30, 2018 was presented to the Board. The full report can be viewed here:

Final Cost of Contractor Services Approved for New Jenkins High Facility
On July 11, 2018, the Board approved the award of RFQ/RFP C18-23 Construction Manager at Risk Contracting Services for Jenkins High School Replacement Project to J.E. Dunn Construction Company, pending final contract negotiations. District staff and Parsons staff have negotiated the contract with J.E. Dunn Construction Company for a total contract amount of $55,000,000 (Initial Guaranteed Maximum Price) which includes the following components.

• Preconstruction Fee of $79,000 for costs and expenses plus 3.5% fee

• Construction Fee of 3.5% of the cost of work and overhead costs and expenses

• Construction Manager at Risk maximum overhead costs and expenses of $3,560,270

Final Cost of Design Professional Services Approved for Groves High School Campus Master Planning Project:
On July 11, 2018, the Board approved the award of RFQ/RFP C18-24 Design Professional Services for Groves High School Campus Master Planning Project to Cogdell & Mendrala Architects, Inc. pending final contract negotiations. District staff and Parsons staff have negotiated the contract with Cogdell & Mendrala Architects, Inc. in the amount of $115,000.

Final Cost of Woodville Tompkins High School Gym Addition & Renovations Approved
On July 11, 2018, the Board approved the award of RFQ C18-30 (ESPLOST) Woodville Tompkins HS Gym Addition & Renovations to James W. Buckley & Associates, Inc. pending final contract negotiations. District staff and Parsons staff have negotiated the contract with James W. Buckley & Associates, Inc. for a cost of $525,000.00.

Board November Meeting Calendar

Tuesday, November 13, 2018 - 8:00 AM
Whitney Administrative Complex - Jessie Collier DeLoach Board Room (Building G)
2 Laura Avenue

Thursday, November 15, 2018 - 9:00 AM
Whitney Administrative Complex Jessie Collier DeLoach Board Room (Building G)
2 Laura Avenue

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