Board of Education Meeting Minutes

Union Board of Education

Union, CT 06076

Wednesday, November 9, 2022 at 6:30 pm

Union School Library

Also via Zoom

Call to order: The meeting was called to order at 6:37 pm by Andrea Estell.

Attending: A. Estell, A. Blank, R. Fischetti, E. Fournier, J. Garden, J. Kavanagh

Sup./Prin. S. Jackopsic, M. Powers, Rec. Secretary

Others Attending: J. Crawford

Approval of Minutes

  1. Fournier made a motion to approve the minutes from October 26, 2022. Seconded by R. Fischetti. Jim Kavanagh abstained. Motion passed.

Individuals to be heard- none.

Communications: Sup./Prin. Jackopsic stated that we received a reminder letter from the Town Clerk that we need to post the dates for Board of Ed meeting for 2023 year.

Administrative Reports and Activities Summary

  1. Staff Report- PreK teacher, Mrs. Crawford shared that her class is currently exploring friends and friendships. They are focusing on what makes a good friend, how they perceive friendship and problem solving. The class has “planted” a friendship tree. As the children do acts of kindness, the tree will sprout. She shared the video with the board.

Supt./Prin. Jackopsic added that Mrs. Crawford compiles a parent newsletter every week sharing the progress of the class.

  1. Superintendent and Principal’s Report- Supt./Prin. Jackopsic reported that we have recently had a lot of illness for both students and staff in the building. Everyone has been flexible with coverage. He and Nurse L. Demurjian have spoken to and received guidance from the NDDH regarding RSV, flu and Covid. Teachers are continuing attending professional learning. iReady Math has launched and teachers attended an October 28 webinar. We had a good turnout for parent/teacher conferences. The Fire Prevention Day went well with a great presentation. On Friday, November 11, we will hold a Veteran’s Day celebration and lunch. The 2023-24 budget will be previewed at the next meeting. A winter showcase will once again be held in January and a spring showcase in May.

Committee Reports

  1. Curriculum- none.
  2. Communication- none.
  3. Transportation- We are on a waiting list for electric bus applications.
  4. Personnel- none.
  5. Building- Alarm system, fire extinguishers have been inspected.
  6. EASTCCONN- The executive director has hired a finance director.

 

Financial Report

  1. Review of bills- The bills were reviewed and in order.
  2. 2022-23 Board of Ed Spending Plan- Mainly routine expenses at this time. We will need to replace a motor on one of the boilers in the near future.

Old Business

  1. Goals Discussion- The Board announced the three goals for this school year. Goal 1- to complete the policy manual by June 30, 2023. Goal 2- Schedule a joint meeting with the Board of Finance by February 28, 2023. Goal 3- Complete a community conversation regarding the growth and future of the school by March 31, 2023.
  2. Kavanagh made a motion to adopt the three goals as stated. A. Blank seconded the motion. The motion unanimously carried.

New Business

  1. Superintendent Goals- Supt./Prin. Jackopsic listed goals for SEL, teaching and learning and community outreach.
  2. Review of Policies- 1st Reading- was completed. Will modify as needed. A special meeting has been set for November 30 at 5:00 p.m. to complete.
  3. 2023 Meeting Schedule- A motion by A. Blank was made to approve the meeting schedule for 2023. J. Garden seconded the motion. The motion unanimously carried.
  4. Substitute Rates- Supt./Prin. Jackopsic made a proposal to increase the substitute teacher rate of $95.00 per day to $130.00 for certified teachers and $105.00 for noncertified teachers. A. Blank made a motion to approve the increase the substitute teacher pay to $130.00 for certified teachers and $105.00 for non-certified teachers. J. Kavanaugh seconded the motion. The motion unanimously carried.
  5. BOE/Staff Collaborative Session Reschedule- The meeting has been rescheduled for Tuesday, December 6, 2022 at 3:15 p.m.

Individuals to be heard– none.

Adjournment

Motion by to adjourn at 8:41 pm. by E. Fournier. J. Garden seconded the motion. The motion unanimously carried. The meeting adjourned at 8:41 pm.

Respectfully submitted by Michele Powers, Recording Secretary.

Union Board of Education
Union, CT 06076
Wednesday, October 26, 2022 at 6:30 pm
Union School Library Also via Zoom

Call to order: The meeting was called to order at 6:35 pm by Andrea Estell.
Attending: A. Estell, R. Fischetti, E. Fournier, J. Garden, Sup./Prin. S. Jackopsic, M. Powers,
Rec. Secretary Others Attending: A. Gordon

Approval of Minutes
E. Fournier made a motion to approve the minutes from September 28, 2022. Seconded by J. Garden.
Unanimously approved.

Individuals to be heard: none.

Communications: none.

Administrative Reports and Activities Summary

a. Staff Report- Special Education teacher Alison Gordon reported to those attending that things
are going very well this school year and that she has benefitted from being able to collaborate
with other teachers. She added that it has been fun working with students in grades K-7.

b. Superintendent and Principal’s Report- Sup./Prin. Jackopsic reported that events such as the
Meet and Greet and Fall Fest have gone very well. Last Friday (Oct. 21) grades 3-8 attended a
concert at the U.S. Coast Guard in New London. Fire Prevention program will
take place on Friday, Oct. 28. Parent/teacher conferences are next week. A Veteran’s Day event is
planned for Nov. 11. Seventh and eighth grade students are attending The Woodstock Academy
Leadership Conference on Oct. 27. Our teachers are working on supports/intervention in math to help
our students catch up. He gave an update on grant status, reporting that we did not receive the
federal security grant, as well as the electric bus grant in the initial round. He will be applying
for the state’s security grant funding.

Committee Reports

a. Curriculum- none.

b. Communication- We will be discussing a possible community conversation for some time over the
winter.

c. Transportation- We have had one driver for the afternoon run on a few occasions.

d. Personnel- none.

e. Building- Brief update on alarm system was provided.

f. EASTCCONN- There has been a large turnover in the finance department during the past
year which has presented some challenges.

Financial Report
a. Review of bills- The bills were reviewed and in order.

b. 2022-23 Board of Ed Spending Plan- Sup./Prin. Jackopsic said that we have not incurred any major
costs at this time.

Old Business
a. Goals Discussion- A. Estell said going forward The Board would be working on how to make goals
measurable. The focus would be on 4 to 5 goals.

New Business
a. Policy Review Process- The board was provided with updated policies to read and review for
future meetings.

b. Budget Transfer- Sup./Prin. Jackopsic made a request to The Board to transfer
$10,000.00 from regular high school tuition to vo-ag tuition. R. Fischetti made a motion to
transfer $10,000.00 from the regular high school tuition to the vo-ag tuition. E. Fournier seconded
the motion. The motion unanimously carried.

c. Woodstock Academy Leadership Conference Transportation- Sup./Prin. Jackopsic made a request to
The Board for $112.00 from the regular transportation budget to pay for The Woodstock Academy
Leadership Conference bus transportation. E. Fournier made a motion for $112.00 to be paid from the
regular transportation budget to pay transportation costs to The Woodstock Academy Leadership
Conference. J. Garden seconded the motion. The motion unanimously carried.

Individuals to be heard- none.

Adjournment
Motion by to adjourn at 7:25pm. by E. Fournier. R. Fischetti seconded the motion. The motion
unanimously carried. The meeting adjourned at 7:25 pm.

Respectfully submitted by Michele Powers, Recording Secretary.

Union Board of Education

Union, CT 06076

Wednesday, September 28, 2022 at 6:30 PM

Union School Library Also via Zoom

 

Call to order: The meeting was called to order at 6:41 PM by Andrea Estell.

Attending: A. Estell, R. Fischetti, E. Fournier, J. Garden, Sup./Prin. S. Jackopsic, M. Powers, Rec. Secretary Others Attending: P. Rae

Approval of Minutes

E. Fournier made a motion to approve the minutes from August 24, 2022.

Seconded by J. Garden. Approved by A. Estell, E. Fournier, J. Garden. The motion carried.

  1. Fischetti abstained.

Individuals to be heard- none.

Communications: none.

Administrative Reports and Activities Summary

 

a. Staff Report- P. Rae reported that the Wolf Den project is going well and has been a good learning experience for students and staff. Students are respecting the rules that they came up with. He complimented Mrs. Pitruzzello and Mr. LaMonica for coordinating the program. The math program is evolving and teachers are currently assessing student needs. The iReady math program has useful tools to provide this and is currently being implemented in grades K-5.

b. Superintendent and Principal’s Report- Sup./Prin. Jackopsic reported a nice start to the school year and everyone is settling in. We have had some delays with deliveries of materials and services. We received a special education coaching grant. A grant from CAS has provided $1,500.00 to be used for a senior citizen outreach program partnered with the school. Vaccine clinics continue with a clinic today (9.28.22) and another to be held 10.26.22. The Meet and Greet Open House will be held 9.29.22 from 6:00-7:00 PM. We have received the new lunch room tables and chairs.

Committee Reports

 

a. Curriculum- The new math curriculum was

b. Communication- none

c. Transportation- We experienced a day with only one bus driver and had to make adjustments. This was caused by an accident on 190. If we have a situation with no drivers available, school will be closed that day.

d. Personnel- none

e. Building- Per inspection, a few of the fire extinguishers need to be adjusted. A water tank had to be replaced. Depending on the electric bus application, one of the next steps would be doing a site evaluation. The town fire department may also be asked for recommendations as well.

f. EASTCCONN- none

Financial Report

 

a. Review of bills- The bills were reviewed and in order.  J. Garden made a motion to accept the review of bills as stated. E. Fournier seconded the motion. The motion unanimously carried.

b. 2022-23 Board of Ed Spending Plan- Things are currently going pretty well. Unexpected expense with the replacement of the water tank.

Old Business

 

  1. Goals Discussion- Board members shared and discussed various topics. They will meet again in October when all Board members can be present before moving forward with any proposals.

New Business

 

a. Cyber/Liability Insurance- Sup./Prin. Jackopsic stated that the Town of Union currently pays for liability insurance. Cyber insurance is very expensive, and we reviewed with our IT services. An alternative is using some funds for proactive training and installing more firewalls.

b. Parent/Teacher Conference Dates- Sup./Prin. Jackopsic would like to move the conference dates from December to Nov. 2 and 3 and making Nov. 3 & 4 half days. In addition, we would make Dec. 8 and 9 full days.

J. Garden made a motion to move Parent/Teacher Conferences to Nov. 2 and 3, half day sessions on Nov. 3 and 4 and making Dec. 8 and 9 full day sessions. E. Fournier seconded the motion. The motion unanimously carried.

Individuals to be heard– none.

Adjournment

Motion by to adjourn at 8:33 PM by E. Fournier. R. Fischetti seconded the motion. The motion unanimously carried. The meeting adjourned at 8:33 PM.

Respectfully submitted by Michele Powers, Recording Secretary.

Union Board of Education
Union, CT 06076
Wednesday, August 24, 2022 6:30 P.M.
Special Meeting
Union School Library
Also via Zoom

Call to order: The meeting was called to order at 6:40 p.m. by A. Estell.
Attending: A. Estell, A. Blank, E. Fournier, J. Garden, J. Kavanagh
Sup./Prin., S. Jackopsic, M. Powers, Rec. Sec.
Others attending: D. Eaton

Approval of Minutes
E. Fournier made a motion to approve the minutes from June 22, 2022. Seconded by J. Garden. Unanimously approved.

Individuals to be heard- none.

Communications- none.

Administrative Reports and Activities Summary
a. Superintendent and Principal’s Report- Sup./Prin. Jackopsic reported that many COVID restrictions have been lifted as we move back toward normalcy. The building is being cleaned thoroughly for the opening of the school year. Our enrollment has climbed to 53 students. We are piloting our preschool three- and four-year old program, as well as the K-2 program. We are also piloting our tuition for staff’s children program. There is a lot to work out within the new special education data system that launched in July. We are looking to beginning a partnership with Yale with an outdoor program for students in the spring. We are also looking into grant funding for after school programming. We have applied for electric bus grant funding. Professional development and curriculum development are ongoing. Bus routes are being finalized. The Stafford lunch program for Union School will not run this year. We have reached out to the state for possible options. The town crew broke ground on the preschool play area. We anticipate the fence for this area will be installed September 9. Other grants include: SERAC (mental health) and an outreach grant for seniors in the town. Dr. Boucher has been named the new medical advisor. Teacher Alison Gordon has requested to reduce her status as a. 8 employee to .6 for one year. Kristen Deptula will be .8 in her one-year position which 75% is paid for by grant funding, which will result in some savings in our budget. SBAC results will be released August 25.

Committee Reports
a. Curriculum- none, but noted they will be meeting soon.
b. Communication- none
c. Transportation- Discussed electric buses at last meeting.
d. Personnel- none
e. Building- Looking at different improvements for safety.
f. EASTCONN- Still looking to hire individuals in the Finance Department. Discussed the possibility of electric buses.

Financial Report
a. Review of bills- The bills were reviewed and in order.
b. 2021-22 Board of Ed Budget- ~$11,000.00 in the black. Purchased new lunch tables, snow blower, air quality testing, fencing for the preschool play area, instructional supplies, exterior and interior lighting, HVAC/boiler maintenance, field trip transportation, SEL curriculum development, building cleaning, plumbing repairs, etc.
c. 2022-23 Board of Ed Spending Plan- We are on target for the upcoming year.

New Business
a. 2022-23 Reopening Plan- Sup./Prin. Jackopsic distributed the updated plan and pointed out that most COVID restrictions have been lifted. We will not be conducting contact-tracing.

A. Blank made a motion to adopt the revised back to school plan as presented. E. Fournier seconded
the motion. The motion unanimously carried.

b. 2022-23 Goals Discussion-BOE members discussed thoughts on potential goals. Will meet with staff in
October to hear staff ideas.

Individuals to be heard- none

Adjournment
J. Kavanagh made a motion to adjourn at 7:42 pm. J. Garden seconded the motion. The motion
unanimously carried. The meeting adjourned at 7:42 pm.

Respectfully submitted by Michele Powers, Recording Secretary

Union Board of Education
Transportation Committee Minutes

August 9, 2022

Subcommittee Members Present: R. Fischetti, A. Estell, S. Jackopsic

The meeting came to order at 1:15 p.m.

The discussion centered on recent notification of grant funding of up to $375,000.00 to purchase an
electric bus. The grant application is due August 19, 2022. The application may be withdrawn at any time
by the submitter. S. Jackopsic is consulting with EASTCONN who provides our transportation services
regarding questions concerning safety, maintenance, longevity, dependability, cost savings, and
contractual implications of a purchase. The possibility of using an existing diesel bus as a backup was
explored, as well. Since the grant application timeframe is short and the application is revocable, S.
Jackopsic will continue work with EASTCONN to obtain further information and submit the application.

The meeting adjourned at 2:10 p.m.

Respectfully submitted,
Andrea Estell

Union Board of Education
Union, CT 06076
Wednesday, June 22.2022 6:30 P.M.
Special Meeting
Union School Library
Also via Zoom

Call to order: The meeting was called to order at 6:35p.m. by A. Estell.

Attending: A. Estell, A. Blank, R. Fischetti, E. Fournier, J. Garden, J. Kavanagh
Sup./Prin., S. Jackopsic, M. Powers, Rec. Sec.
Others attending: A. Fischetti

Old Business

a. Tuition Students-Sup./Prin. Jackopsic reported that we will continue to develop goals before accepting tuition students. Currently, one staff member is interested in enrolling their child in kindergarten for the 2022-23 school year. He recommended to trial this for one year with a tuition fee of $3,000.00 for the 22-23 school year and asked the Board to accept staff members’ kindergarten enrollment.
E. Fournier made a motion to accept staff member tuition student in kindergarten with a tuition fee of $3000.00 for the 22-23 school year. J. Kavanagh seconded the motion. The motion unanimously carried.

b. Superintendent/Principal Contracts (possible executive session)
A motion by E. Fournier was made to move the Superintendent/Principal contract to the end of the meeting. Seconded by R. Fischetti. The motion unanimously carried.

New Business

a. Certification Requirements- Sup./Prin. Jackopsic stated that the state has made accommodations in the certification requirements due to the current teaching shortage. He discussed various scenarios and durational shortage area (permits). He also stated that requirements may be different for different content areas which provide some flexibility.

b. Curriculum Development Plans- Sup./Prin. Jackopsic said that kindergarten-grade 5 would be piloting the I-Ready math program with the possibility of including grades 6-8 in the future. We will continue to use the Reveal program in grades 6-8. Going forward, we continue to develop ELA, Science, Music and Art. PE and Health.
E. Fournier made a motion to enter executive session at 7:23 pm inviting S. Jackopsic to review the Superintendent and Principal contracts. R. Fischetti seconded the motion. The motion carried unanimously. The Board exited executive session at 7:34 pm.
J. Kavanaugh made a motion to extend the Superintendent and Principal’s contract with a third year and increase the Superintendent’s and Principal’s contracted salary in the third year by 2.9%. E. Fournier seconded the motion. The motion carried unanimously.

J. Garden made a motion to adjourn at 7:35 p.m. E. Fournier seconded the motion. The motion unanimously carried.

Adjournment

Respectfully submitted by Michele Powers, Recording Secretary

Union Board of Education Special Meeting
Union, CT 06076
Wednesday, June 1, 2022 at 6:30 pm
Union School Library
Also via Zoom

Call to order: The meeting was called to order at 6:34 pm by Andrea Estell.
Attending: A. Estell, A. Blank, R. Fischetti, E. Fournier, J. Garden,
Sup./Prin. S. Jackopsic, M. Powers, Rec. Secretary
Others Attending: none

Old Business

a. Preschool Structure- Sup./Prin. Jackopsic reported that a Preschool visitation day was held on May 31. Eight potential students and their families attended. He presented entry age range considerations. EASTCONN can provide support going forward. Ratio for adult to child is 10:1. He is submitting a letter to the Board of Selectmen about the possibility of using American Rescue Plan funding for Preschool playground equipment. PreK/Kindergarten teacher, Mrs. Crawford and Para Edu. Mrs. Woronecki will be visiting the Eastford Preschool classroom tomorrow for additional ideas and guidance. He asked the Board to recommend that children be 3-years old by December 31st of a given school year to attend the program.
A motion was made by A. Estell have children that children be 3-years old by December 31st of a given school year to attend the program. A. Blank seconded the motion. The motion unanimously carried.

Adjournment
Motion by to adjourn at 7:22 pm. by E. Fournier. R. Fischetti seconded the motion. The motion unanimously carried. The meeting adjourned at 7:22 pm.

Respectfully submitted by Michele Powers, Recording Secretary

Union Board of Education
Curriculum Committee Meeting
Union, CT 06076
Tuesday, May 17, 2022 at 3:00 pm
Union School Library

Call to order: The meeting was called to order at 3:08pm by Steve Jackopsic.
Attending: J. Garden, A. Agosto, J. Crawford, S. Jackopsic

Meeting Summary:
Discussion of PK with 3 & 4-year olds and K-2 classroom structures and implications on curriculum. More focus on learning progressions for each student. Discussion of possible new math programs also discussed.

Union Board of Education

Special Meeting

Union, CT 06076

Wednesday, March 16, 2022 at 6:30 pm

Union School Library

Also via Zoom

Call to order: The meeting was called to order at 6:44 pm by Andrea Estell.

Attending: A. Estell, R. Fischetti, J. Garden, J. Kavanagh

Sup./Prin. S. Jackopsic, M. Powers, Rec. Secretary

Others Attending: J. Crawford

Approval of Minutes

  1. Fischetti made a motion to approve the minutes from Feb. 9 and Feb. 23.

Seconded by A. Estell. J. Garden abstained from the Feb. 9 meeting. The remaining members approved the Feb. 9 minutes. J. Kavanagh abstained from the Feb. 23 meeting.

The remaining members approved the Feb. 23 minutes.

Individuals to be heard: none.

Communications: none

Administrative Reports and Activities Summary

 

  1. Superintendent and Principal’s report-Sup./Prin. Jackopsic reported that we are in our third week without masking and things continue to go well. He has consulted with DPH and NDDH and reports no new information from them. More test kits have come from the state. We still have plenty available to go home to families. The IEP reporting system is moving to a new system next year. Sup./Prin. Jackopsic will be engaged in eight weeks of training. We will continue to use Frontline until we migrate to the new system. There are no costs to districts for this change. In mid-April we plan to launch the new teacher websites. USA is helping to design a new logo for the school which will be incorporated in spirit wear available for purchase. Pi Day went very well. Seventh and eighth grade students were engaged in learning leadership, an SEL component. STEM teacher, Mrs. Jacobs posted video and photos from the event on the school website. Mr. Rae and Mrs. Couillard are currently planning an eighth grade field trip to Boston for May or June. The school received a $500.00 Amazon gift card donation from a parent who wanted to celebrate the good happenings at the school. Eastford School has reached out to us to possibly join them for a field trip to Mystic Seaport. The staff continues with professional development from EASTCONN. We may be eligible to upgrade our water system infrastructure through the Town of Union with the American Rescue Plan funding. Stafford Mechanical is scheduled for annual maintenance of our ventilation system. This includes replacing the air filters for the HVAC system. The front door has been repaired and is functioning well now. There is a team building activity scheduled for April 1 for staff. The BOE/Staff Collaborative is scheduled for March 31 from 3:15-4:15 pm.
  1. Staff report- Preschool/Kindergarten teacher Jayzel Crawford presented a PowerPoint to the Board which outlined components of our curriculum. Highlights included writing, science (simple machines), SEL. She shared some video and photos which showed some of the activities in class. She also recently collaborated with the first and second grade teacher which she said has been a very positive experience for the students. She stated that her experiences in her new position this year have been very positive.

Committee Reports

 

  1. Curriculum-none.
  2. Communication-none.
  3. Transportation- none.
  4. Personnel-none.
  5. Building-none.
  6. EASTCCONN-none.

 

Financial Report

 

  1. Review of bills- The bills were reviewed and in order.
  1. 2021-2022 Board of Ed Budget- Sup./Prin. Jackopsic reported that we are still looking at a surplus. He is exploring various improvements that those funds may be used for. Possibilities include sealing the parking lot, technology updates, items for the building/grounds.
  1. 2021-22 Board of Ed Spending Plan-Plans to meet with the Board of Finance (The last meeting was cancelled.). The budget hearing is scheduled for April 12 at 7:30 pm.

Old Business

 

  1. BOE Goals and Process- Self-evaluation process continues. The Advisory group will be meeting again.
  1. Meet and Greet/New Staff Collaborative Session- Scheduled for March 31, 2022 from 3:15 to 4:15 pm.

New Business

 

  1. Formation of Policy/Communication Committee- The goal will be to make policy reading process effective. The Board expressed interest in going back to reviewing policy during the second meeting of the month.
  1. 2022-23 School Calendar- Sup./Prin. Jackopsic presented the 2022-23 calendar to the Board members and reviewed the highlights. The Union School calendar closely mirrors The Woodstock Academy calendar. J. Garden made a motion to adopt the Union School 2022-23 calendar. R. Fischetti seconded the motion. The motion to adopt the Union School 2022-23 calendar unanimously carried.
  1. Rockville Vo-Ag Committee Representative- Nancy Kapplan expressed interest in representing the Town of Union. The Board was in agreement that Sup./Prin. Jackopsic invite her to a future meeting to introduce herself and present her qualifications before the Board votes to accept her as a representative.
  1. Tuition Students- Sup./Prin. Jackopsic presented the members with the current policy for resident/non-resident students. He then opened a discussion with possibilities for taking in tuition students. He will enlist more information and legal help to present to the Board at future meetings to continue the discussion.
  1. Preschool Structure- Discussion about the differences in development between PreK and Kindergarten. Possibility of a PreK class with focus on three and four year olds to meet children’s needs. Discussion may continue during the Curriculum meeting. The advisory group can also be utilized for feedback.
  1. Budget Transfers- Sup./Prin. Jackopsic asked the Board to transfer: $5,000.00 from Tuition to Repair/Maint.; $2,000.00 from Tuition to Equipment; $3,000.00 from Custodial Cleaning to Repair/Maint.; $2,000.00 from Custodial Cleaning to Custodial Supplies.
  2. Garden made a motion to transfer the requested funds as presented by Sup./Prin. Jackopsic. R. Fischetti seconded the motion. The motion unanimously carried.

Individuals to be heard– none.

Adjournment

Motion by to adjourn at 9:26pm. by J. Garden. J. Kavanagh seconded the motion. The motion unanimously carried. The meeting adjourned at 9:26 pm.

Respectfully submitted by Michele Powers, Recording Secretary.

Andrea Estell, ChairBoard of Education
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