Tuesday, October 22, 2019 - Today is Cycle Day 6

Minutes 2019-03-11

YORK SUBURBAN SCHOOL BOARD
SPECIAL NON-VOTING MEETING
MARCH 11, 2019 – 6:30 PM
HIGH SCHOOL CAFETERIA

M I N U T E S
(approved on March 18, 2019)

  1. General Business
    Call to Order – Mr. Posenau, Board President

    1. Pledge of Allegiance to the Flag  

      Mr. Posenau called the meeting to order with the Pledge of Allegiance to the Flag.

    2. Roll Call  

      Members present – Ellen Freireich, John Posenau, Richard Robinson, James Sanders, Steve Scalet, Lois Ann Schroeder, Joel Sears, Michael Thoman, Kenneth Watts

    3. A reminder to please silence your cell phone during the meeting.

      Mr. Posenau reported above. 

    4. Public Comment. All comments and questions will be addressed to the President. Board and staff members will not normally respond to comments or questions during the meeting unless recognized by the President for this purpose. Comments will be limited, at the discretion of the President, to five minutes or less.

      An opportunity was provided for public comment. There was none at this time.

  2. Facilities Committee Report – Mrs. Freireich

    Feasibility Study Update

    Mrs. Freireich reported this meeting is a continuation of the Facilities Committee meeting presentation that was held on February 6 when various options of a facility study were provided by Gilbert Architects, Inc. Mrs. Freireich introduced Scott Adams and Tom Gilbert from Gilbert Architects, Inc., in attendance this evening.

    The above presentation was reviewed by Mr. Adams. The three criteria used in this Districtwide Facility Study were enrollment projections that are increasing, improving the functionality of schools and enhancing the program.

    The five options were summarized and described in detail along with the pros and cons that were shared by Board members.

    A discussion continued. A summary of the discussion follows.

    Option 1 addresses the projected increasing population (approximately 300 students) in the elementary schools and enhances the academic programs at the middle school and high school. The middle school would be close to capacity  with the bubble of approximately 300 students going through. There could be other options within Option 1.

    The average optimum enrollment of an elementary school depends on a district’s values and is 500 to 800 students.

    Looking at program vs. numbers, the Administration reports collaboration is the anticipated trend for the next five to ten years.

    Consideration of additional gathering spaces and staff development areas are encouraged.

    Evaluation of the courtyard spaces and their use included concern of maintenance and difficulty to oversee those spaces. Some ideas included enclosing some spaces at the middle school which would result in some classrooms losing access to natural light. Depending on the vision of the District, outdoor classrooms are becoming popular.

    For any new construction, the PA Department of Education guidelines include the following minimums, 25 acres for a high school and 10 acres for an elementary school, additional one acre for every 100 students. Currently, the high school has 28 acres, East York Elementary has 13 acres, Indian Rock Elementary has 10 acres and Valley View Elementary has seven acres. A possibility of constructing a new building behind an existing school followed by tearing down the old building may exist if space allows.

    Option 1 timetable would be developed with minimal impact on the educational program, the use of modular classrooms and the need for phasing would be needed in some cases.

    When the newest building in the District, Yorkshire Elementary, was built an option was shared to have the possibility of a third wing added if needed. That was not explored with these options.

    In grade configurations, moving grade 8 to the high school is unusual and not desired and would result in maximum capacity status at the building.

    Bright Horizons currently use four rooms at Valley View Elementary and three rooms at Yorkshire Elementary. Starting in 2019-20, Bright Horizons will have two rooms in each building and their before and after school programming will be held in multi-purpose rooms and areas that are used during the school day.

    The enrollment projections were questioned and numbers do not seem to add up with the potential growth of students throughout the District. Caution by one Board member was advised to spending any money on these options.

    Continuing to have neighborhood schools may have a positive influence going forward.

    Realignment of grade levels may not be advisable because of the additional transportation of students throughout the District.

    Rather than permanent construction, a possibility may include nice modular rooms being part of a structure for a limited amount of years while maintaining the current status and continuing with ongoing maintenance requirements.

    A suggestion to not close building(s) and the current pool was made as new construction costs a lot of money and costs will only increase going forward.  

    There are items on the Capital List that are needed to continue to maintain the buildings. The East York Elementary roof project is currently scheduled to move forward for this summer. 

    The consensus of Board members was to pursue variations of Option 1.

    Mrs. Freireich thanked everyone for a productive meeting to start this discussion and encouraged Administrators and staff members to send any ideas to Dr. Williams. The District website will have information available for the community as this process continues. It is anticipated that additional meetings will be scheduled during this ongoing process.

    The link to additional information on the District website is https://www.yssd.org/facilities/

  3. Public Comment. All comments and questions will be addressed to the President. Board and staff members will not normally respond to comments or questions during the meeting unless recognized by the President for this purpose. Comments will be limited, at the discretion of the President, to five minutes or less.

    An opportunity was provided for public comment.  There was none at this time. 

  4. Adjournment  

    The meeting was adjourned at 8:09 PM.

/s/ Corinne D. Mason, PCSBA, M.Ed.
Board Secretary

Board Meeting Audio