Meeting of the Board of Directors – September 22, 2014 – Minutes

Present: Michael Doolittle, Kim Futrell, Frank Mitchell, Bob Parker, Monique Frasier, John Jessen, Claudia Merson, Liz Cox, Rebecca Holcombe, Kimball Cartright, Joel Tolman, Melissa Spear, Betsy Sneath, Ben Gardner (by proxy)
Regrets: Wendy Battles

Welcome & Minutes

After general greeting to the September board meeting Betsy distributed the background check request form.

Members then reviewed the minutes from June board meeting. Mike made the motion to approve and Frank was the second. The members approved the minutes.

Business Requiring Approval

Internal Controls. Melissa presented a letter clarifying our statement on the internal control environment, needed especially in light of the charter management reviews by the state. Bob moved to accept the letter and John’s voice was the second. There were several questions regarding our responsibility and the auditor’s. The board approved the memo.

Invoices. LaRosa for $19,441.10; Gray Organschi for $20,357.55 to cover value engineering nearly complete.

Kim made a motion to approve payment of the invoice and Bob’s voice was the second. The board voted to approve. Melissa described a revised budget that reflects the current status and will be reviewed in October.

Liz presented the education evaluation plan for 2014/2015, which is similar to last year’s except proficient teachers will need 2 informal reviews rather than the previous 3. Monique moved to approve the plan and John’s voice was the second. The board voted to approve the plan.

Planning and Construction

An OSHA inspector visited with questions none of which generated violation or citation but there were questions about blocked emergency exits, monthly inspections of fire extinguishers, maintaining OSHA 300 logs, and 2 broken outlet covers, all of which required $660 to address. There will now be 300 logs and consultation services to develop all hazards plan and chemical hygiene plan.

Construction Scenarios to Review.The bid package is expected by Oct 15 and the month-long process should close Nov 15 with decisions by the end of Nov. The work could begin in Dec. Bensonwood would prepare materials until April 1 and by May 15 the structure is expected to be complete. Interior work would continue over summer and the building would be ready for Dec 2015 (with an additional cost of $90,000). Utility work is planned for this fall’s holidays (Columbus or Veterans).

Construction scenario 2: Foundation finished by mid June with Bensonwood fabrication to run through August. The building should be ready for occupants in March 2016. Both scenarios are dependent on funding though the current positive bidding environment might lead to some savings. Marty Looney and Toni Walker have been working with state administration on the bonding possibility. The RISC Foundation will consider a bridge loan to be repaid by Urban Act grant and the funds from the legislative effort. RISC funding would replace a proposed bank loan.

Program Reports

School: Liz reported that 182 students (186 to start) were on campus– a smaller frosh class. It is a highly skilled and rambunctious group. The State Department of Education has been in contact about renewal package with a possible start date of Oct 1, and there is a month to complete.

Common Ground will be first though process probably continues through the second semester. We’ll include documents like the school improvement plan with its 5 components, literacy, numeracy college and career readiness goals. Diversity work (following up on the July training) continues with faculty and staff engaged in courageous convo about race. Melissa and Liz have a plan to continue work with Niyonu.

Programs: Rebecca reported on the 2-day fall staff training with environmental educators, which was the start of the season’s program schedule. There is now bus transport from any NH school for afterschool programs. Fall program calendar is on the way with new cooking classes and adult focused activities. Summer camp went well with additional administrative help and a good response from parents.


Kimball noted the pending Feast from the Fields and the hope of selling another 50 tickets. With the renewal there is incentive to create an annual report for the organization to update on the campaign and construction. How does this fit with the annual appeal solicitation and what is the messaging. The appeal needs some kind of update on the campaign and construction.

Vision & Values Work

Joel presented an updated vision values statement and diagram and the conversation continues within the building. There will be another update before the ideas go out for review.

Meeting adjourned by 7:15.


Leave A Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.