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February 9, 2021 at 6:30 PM - GMSD Board Business Meeting

Agenda
1. Call to Order
2. Moment of Silence
3. Pledge of Allegiance
4. Approval of Agenda
Recommended Motion(s):  Motion passed: I move to approve the agenda, passed with a motion by Board Member #1 and a second by Board Member #2.
5. Recognition and Awards
Rationale:  STAFF RECOGNITIONS

PreK-4th Grade GMSD Teacher of the Year
Paige Browning
1st Grade Teacher
Forest Hill Elementary School

Paige Browning is a first-grade teacher at Forest Hill Elementary School.  Though she has been teaching for eight years, this year was her first year at Forest Hill, her first year, teaching first grade, and her first year being a virtual teacher.  In a year of firsts, one thing resonated with Ms. Browning—flexibility.  "Teachers are the most flexible creatures one can encounter," she shared in an interview.  Upon coming back to school after the pandemic hit in March, she volunteered to teach virtually when the number of students who selected virtual called for an additional first grade teacher. 

Ms. Browning quickly became one of GMSD’s virtual teacher experts, using a mix of recorded videos and a plethora of engaging digital tools like SeeSaw and Nearpod. She also enjoyed several hours of live instruction and facetime with her students every day.  "I wanted our day to mirror a traditional day in first grade as much as possible," she said.

One thing she saw as missing in her virtual day was the "Feeling of oneness and fellowship with others."  She implemented initiatives like Friend Fridays, Last Day Lunches, online get-to-know-you games, on-campus (socially distanced) get togethers at the lake, and breakout rooms in Zoom for friendly chats. 

When students returned from the Winter Break and the number of virtual students shifted, she was reassigned to an in-person first grade class made up of students from previously in-person first graders and those who were previously fully virtual.  In spite of all of these changes, Ms. Browning has continued to approach her work with a smile and a love for her craft.

5th-8th Grade GMSD Teacher of the Year
John Frizzell
8th Grade American History
Riverdale K-8 School

One parent wrote about John Frizzell, "He has a bright shining star at Riverdale."  It’s an accurate assessment, as he has only been with GMSD for four years and has quickly been recruited into several leadership positions around the school and district.  His positions range from PLC Lead, Cross Country Sponsor, Poetry/Book Club Sponsor, TEAM Teacher Evaluator, Social Studies Content Lead, to a GMSD Diversity and Inclusion Coach.  Frizzell is a talented teacher with a zeal for helping his students discover a love for history. 

"Studying history may not help you balance your checkbook or understand chemical reactions, but it does something far more important.  It requires us to step into the shoes of people who have gone before us and learn from their lives.  History requires us to practice perspective taking and empathy," he shared. 

Aside from his passion about the subject matter in the classroom, it’s evident that Mr. Frizzell deeply cares for each of his students.  He has instituted an annual "Student Appreciation Day" in which he writes handwritten, personalized notes to each student.  We were lucky to read through nearly a dozen letters from current and former students and their families on how great an impact some of the personalized notes had on students. 

A firm believer in student voice, Mr. Frizzell also takes cues from his students by using student exit interviews to continue sharpening his teaching skills. "I listen to my students’ feedback because the best teachers never stop being students themselves," said Mr. Frizzell.

9th-12th Grade GMSD Teacher of the Year
Andrea Cox
11th Grade AP English Language
Houston High School

Andrea Cox has been teaching for sixteen years with fifteen of those years at Houston High School.  In addition to teaching AP English, she also serves as the English Department’s PLC Leader and has worked with colleagues to implement cutting edge strategies.  She has coached new teachers as a Mentor Teacher.  Gifted at writing, she is also commonly found on vision setting committees and school improvement plan task forces. 

Ms. Cox also sponsors the HHS Yearbook, called the Mustang Spirit, which has garnered several awards in creativity from the publishing company.  Most recently, Ms. Cox chaired the John Traverse Scholarship Committee to select a student recipient named for her dear friend and teaching mentor, John Traverse. 

Many students describe her class as a revelation—in that she focuses her curriculum (rhetorical analysis, logical reasoning, synthesis, and argument) on outside world connections.  "Many [students] had never considered a piece of fiction worthy of any real-world connection, almost like the texts live history, and higher-level questions, I taught students to recognize that literature changes and evolves in reaction to real-world events, as does music, art, philosophy, etc.  Once my students experienced this epiphany, the learning opportunities became endless," Ms. Cox explained.

With AP exam pass rates that far exceed state and global averages, Ms. Cox knows how to reach students while addressing the curriculum.  She shared letters written to her from students who have gone on to prestigious universities and careers and who still remember the daily bell ringers in which students discuss current world events. A centralized theme around the letters she shared were that students felt challenged to think critically in her classroom and felt they developed invaluable skills that are serving them in college and beyond.

"These students, and others whom I did not cite, are out in the world, using connections they made in my class to build a more understanding society," Ms. Cox wrote about the effect of her teaching.  It doesn’t get better than that.
 
6. REPORTS
6.A. TLN Update (Tennessee Legislature)
Attachments: (1)
6.B. Chairman's Report
6.D. Superintendent's Report
7. Citizens to be heard
8. CONSENT AGENDA
Recommended Motion(s):  Motion passed: I move to approve all the items in the Consent Agenda, passed with a motion by Board Member #1 and a second by Board Member #2.
8.A. Approval of the Minutes
Rationale:  Minutes from 1.12.21 Board Business Meeting
8.B. Miscellaneous FY 20-21 Budget Amendments # 23,24 & 25
8.C. School fees and Activity Costs- Second semester 20-21
8.D. Annual Review and Revision of Policies - First Reading
Rationale:  Department of Human Resources
No revisions recommended for the following at this time,

HR 5.102           Professional Employment
HR 5.115           Employee Assignment/Transfer
HR 5.118           Employment Contract
HR 5.200           Separation Practices for Tenured Teachers
HR 5.301           Certificated Employee Jury Duty
HR 5.302           Certificated Employee Sick Leave
HR 5.303           Certificated Employee Personal and Professional Leave
HR 5.306           Certificated Employee Military Leave
HR 5.601           Conflict of Interest
HR 5.701           Employment of Substitutes

Department of Finance

No revisions recommended for the following at this time,
2.100, Fiscal Management and Goals
2.200, Annual Operating Budget
2.201, Line Item Transfer Authority
2.300, Comparability of Services
2.400, Revenues, Gifts, and Bequests
2.4021, Investment of Idle Funds
2.404, School Support Organizations
2.500, Deposit of Funds
2.600, Bonded Employees
2.700, Accounting System
2.702, Property Records
2.703, Audits
2.805 Purchasing
2.806 Bids and Quotations
2.808 Purchase Orders

Revisions are recommended for the following policies after first and second reading
2.403, Surplus Property Sales
6.701, Student Solicitations/Fundraising Activities
 
9. BOARD ACTION ITEMS
9.A. Approval of Purchase of Laptops for Certified Staff
Recommended Motion(s):  Motion passed: I move to approve the purchase of Apple laptops and accessories for in the amount of $905,850, passed with a motion by Board Member #1 and a second by Board Member #2.
Attachments: (1)
9.B. Houston High Bathroom Renovations
Recommended Motion(s):  Motion passed: I move to approve GMSD bid #FY2020-06 for bathroom renovations at Houston High School and award the bid in the amount of $388,674 to Grinder, Taber, Grinder, passed with a motion by Board Member #1 and a second by Board Member #2.
9.C. Houston Middle Bathroom Renovations
Recommended Motion(s):  Motion passed: I move to approve GMSD bid #FY2020-07 for bathroom renovations at Houston Middle School and award the bid in the amount of $527,507 to Grinder, Taber, Grinder, passed with a motion by Board Member #1 and a second by Board Member #2.
9.D. Farmington Elementary Bathroom Renovations
Recommended Motion(s):  Motion passed: I move to approve GMSD bid #FY2020-08 for bathroom renovations at Farmington Elementary School and award the bid in the amount of $401,182 to Grinder, Taber, Grinder, passed with a motion by Board Member #1 and a second by Board Member #2.
9.E. Riverdale School Bathroom Renovations
Recommended Motion(s):  Motion passed: I move to approve GMSD bid #FY2020-09 for bathroom renovations at Riverdale and award the bid in the amount of $419,244 to Grinder, Taber, Grinder, passed with a motion by Board Member #1 and a second by Board Member #2.
9.F. Joint Statement of Boards of Education Expressing Concern with Recent Legislation.
10. Announcements
11. Adjournment
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