Board Connection – August 25, 2014

HCS_COLOR_SM logoThe Hilliard City Schools’ Board of Education met during a regular meeting on Monday, August 25, 2014. The following highlights some of the major items discussed and decided. For additional information about the board, visit the district’s website at www.hilliardschools.org.

Recognition and Program

Hilliard Davidson Strength and Conditioning Facility Presentation

The Hilliard Davidson Strength and Conditioning Facility Committee presented information on their efforts to build a new structure for all Davidson athletes. A group of 11 parent volunteers have come together to raise more than $100,000 for the new facility. It is expected to be located near the field house and offers 3,600 square feet of space for student athletes.

The first phase of the project should be completed within the next five months and includes the pouring of the concrete and construction of the facility itself. The second stage includes the installation of the heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) as well as the electrical work. The third and final stage includes purchasing equipment for the student athletes to use as part of the overall strengthening program. You can read more about the project including a listing of all the great people and organizations that have donated money and services to make this dream a reality online at http://hdvstrengthconditioningfacility.weebly.com/.

Consent Agenda Items

  • Personnel

Congratulations to the following staff member who is retiring:

  • Mollie Blesedell, bus handicap assistant in the Transportation Services Department who has been with Hilliard City Schools since March 1989.

Action Agenda Items

  • Authorize the Director of Business to negotiate and agree to a cell tower project

Superintendent John Marschhausen, Ph.D., recommended and the board approved the authorization of Jeff Franklin, director of business, to negotiate and award a land lease agreement with Skyway Towers for a cell tower at Hilliard Davidson High School. The tower would be located near the back of the football field visitor seating area. If approved, the agreement is expected to provide approximately $28,800 in revenue per year for the district with an initial five year agreement.

Reports and Information

  • Superintendent’s Report

Superintendent John Marschhausen, Ph.D., updated the board on several initiatives throughout the district including:

  • Quality Profile – Hilliard City Schools will release its first Quality Profile on September 15. This is one of three promises Marschhausen made to the community during his State of the Schools address last October. The Profile will provide the community with an honest look at how the district is progressing in six key areas including academics, student participation, educating the whole child, finances, community partnerships and technology. Residents can look for the profile to be available online with a hard copy mailed to their home as well.
  • House Bill 597 – Marschhausen updated the board on the legislative discussions associated with House Bill (HB) 597 which is aimed at replacing the current state standards that are aligned with the Common Core and replacing them with new standards. Hilliard City Schools hasn’t testified on behalf or against the Common Core. The district views any state standard as the floor and strives to provide a whole child experience that goes well beyond this minimum expectation. Marschhausen noted that the district has tremendously talented professionals in both the classrooms and those who are designing Hilliard’s local curriculum. Certainly the state standards are taken into account, but it has never been the entire picture and the Hilliard community expects more from their school district.
  • Enrollment – Hilliard City Schools welcomed more than 16,000 pre-school through 12th grade students last week. Some of the district’s schools are getting quite full and the district will continue to watch the overall enrollment figures and how they play a role in the overall facility plans.
  • Community Conversation – Marschhausen invited all residents to the district’s first “Community Conversation” on September 8 from 6-7 p.m. at Britton Elementary School. The open dialogue will include discussion about the district’s current and future financial picture, strategic academic planning and school facility needs. Additional information about the discussion is available online at www.hilliardschools.org/community-conversation-on-finances/.
  • Transportation Services – Marschhausen complemented new Transportation Coordinator Randy Snyder and his team for a great opening to the school year. The department operates 125 routes and transports more than 8,000 students every day.
  • Delay in Permanent Improvement Projects – The wet summer weather has certainly impacted the district’s summer permanent improvement construction projects. This includes the tracks at both Hilliard Davidson and Darby high schools. Both projects are in their final stages and should be ready for use in the near future.
  • Engage in Education – Marschhausen asked board members and residents to mark their calendars for November 7 when the Hilliard Education Foundation will host their Engage in Education event as part of their Silver Celebration. The foundation is celebrating 25 years of supporting Hilliard Schools’ student and staff needs that are outside the district’s lean budgetary constraints. This special event will take place at The Darby House and includes Cameron Mitchell Catering, live band and silent auction. For additional information, visit www.hilliardeducationfoundation.org/event/engage-in-education-a-silver-celebration/.