Weekly Update from the Superintendent - December 8, 2017

tchurchill Fri, 12/08/2017 - 8:39am
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December 8, 2017

This weekly update includes information from the District Office and department staff regarding District operations and reminders.  It does not include updates or activities from each school site.

Office of the Superintendent:

Sexual Harassment - Given the recent news events, I thought it would be a good reminder for all Meridian SD staff members to review the District’s policy 5011 and accompanying procedures 5011P regarding sexual harassment in the workplace.

The Meridian School District is committed to a positive and productive working environment free from discrimination, including sexual harassment. This commitment extends to all employees and other persons involved in academic, educational, extracurricular, athletic, and other programs or activities of the school, whether that program or activity is in a school facility, on school transportation, or at a class or school training held elsewhere.

All District employees have completed the 'Sexual Harassment: Staff to Staff' training course as part of the annual SafeSchools training requirement.  There are a number of additional modules on this topic that are available in SafeSchools. Some examples:

  •  Sexual Harassment: Student Issues and Response
  • Sexual Misconduct: Staff to Student
  • Boundary Invasion
  • General Ethics in the Workplace

If you would like more information and access to additional training modules, please contact Julie Dodd in the District Office at jdodd@meridian.wednet.edu or at extension 2152.

SafeSchools Alert is a resource available to students, staff and the community to report incidents in an anonymous and safe manner.  The SafeSchools Alert hyperlink is located in the bottom left corner of the District website.  Click on the icon and you will enter the SafeSchools Alert and you will see the following message: “Meridian School District welcomes you to our SafeSchools Alert incident reporting system. To submit a tip, please click on a button.”  Simply click on how you would like to report the incident and follow the instructions.  This incident report will be sent to the District’s Director of Personnel. Thanks for keeping Meridian Schools safe for everyone.

School Board:

Reception for School Board Director Karolyn Crabtree – All District employees, students, parents and community members are invited to a reception for School Board Director, Karolyn Crabtree who is retiring from her Board position effective the end of December. The reception will be on December 13th from 6:30 – 7:00 p.m. in the Board Room at MHS. This is prior to the regular Board meeting at 7:00 p.m. 

Next Regular Board Meeting - The next regular School Board meeting is at 7:00 PM on Wednesday, December 13, 2017. Board meetings are held in the Professional Development/Board Room at MHS.  All staff members are invited and welcome to attend School Board meetings.   Meeting agendas and minutes can be accessed via a link from the District web site or at http://www.boarddocs.com/wa/msdwa/Board.nsf/Public

Business Office: (Daniel Yorton, Director of Business Services)

Itemized Receipts Required - Itemized receipts are required for expense claims.  The District cannot reimburse for claims that do not have an itemized receipt.

December Pay Date – The December pay date is Friday December 29, the last business day of the month.

Human Resources: (Kurt Harvill, Director of Personnel, Grants and Risk Management)

Winter Break – District Office - The District Office will be closed during Winter Break, December 18th – January 2, 2018.  It is common for various District Office staff to schedule vacations during portions of the winter break, so if you want to meet with a specific District Office staff member it is recommended to call or email that person for an appointment.   

Board Policy 5400 - School Board Policy 5400 provides guidance regarding "Personnel Leaves".  Section B of the policy discusses leave units:

Leaves that require substitute employees will be granted in units of half or full days only, or by shift if less than 3 hours. Leaves that don’t require a substitute, or can be filled internally may be granted in units of 15 minutes.

The certificated employee should only utilize a sub for a half day or full day.  The staff member should plan accordingly and ensure that they are utilizing the correct substitute coverage.  A half-day sub would be considered 3.5 hours or less while anything above 3.5 hours would require a full-day sub.   When a substitute is needed, sick leave is deducted from an employee’s record in only half day or full day increments. The substitute hours (either half-day or full-day) and the amount of sick leave used by the employee (either half-day or full-day) need to be the same.  

Class Size Overload Funds - Article VIII Section 2 of the MEA Collective Bargaining Agreement describes the parameters for class size overload pay.  Class size overload numbers are communicated to the District Office on “count day” each month.  Any class size overload pay is based on the numbers on this count day.  A certificated employee will be compensated in the same month that their class size exceeded the numbers described in the Collective Bargaining Agreement.

If you have questions about personnel leaves or class size overload, please contact Kurt Harvill, Director of Personnel at kharvill@meridian.wednet.edu or at extension 2153.

Maintenance: (Brian Stephan, Maintenance Supervisor)

Rodents! -Any food left in your classroom could likely become a meal for rodents that manage to get into our school buildings from time to time. Please make sure that all foods are stored in tightly sealed containers that are not made from a vegetable oil additive (Glass and ceramic are best.  Plastic can be chewed and is tasty to a rodent.) Over winter break please take all or any food related items home with you rather than leaving them for the rodents to find.

My Favorite FLOTUS Quote of the Week:  “Never lose sight of the fact that the most important yardstick of your success will be how you treat other people.”  (Barbara Bush)