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A-plus score tops 2014 goal; fundraiser yields $120,000; Grow Dat participation funded

The Warren Easton Charter High School board of directors met Oct. 26. David Garland, Robert Delle, Brenda Christiansen and Ronald McDonald were present.

Garland, the board president, called the meeting to order at 6:09 p.m. as member Ronald McDonald arrived, achieving a quorum.

Others in attendance were principal Alexina Medley, assistant principal Joe Gilyot, CFO Mike Greer, board secretary Janet Gaudet, consultant Ken Ducote, former board member Sal Genovese, and a reporter for The Lens. Members Jeff Zapata, David Napoleon, David Benelli, and Jeff Zapata were absent.

Minutes of the September meeting were approved, after they were amended to include names of board members who desired to be on record as having abstained from a vote.

Ken Ducote, consultant on projects, said the school’s new window installation will be completed soon and FEMA reimbursement should come to $300,000. Stabilization of the building is a continuing concern, Ducote said. He is also looking into lightning protection, at a cost projected between $20,000 and $45,000, depending on the system. A smell indicating possible mold and/or mildew problems in rooms 202 and 302 has prompted testing for air quality. The school will take remedial action if necessary upon receiving the results.

The finance committee presented the treasurer’s budget report which was accepted by the board.

Principal Medley announced that the school’s performance score for last year was 120.2 which earned Warren Easton an A-plus ranking. (Scores above 120 rate an A and the plus means the school is meeting improvement goals.) Medley said she wants to increase the score this year by 10 points, double what’s needed to remain A-plus status. By topping 120 points, Warren Easton has already met its 2014 performance goal.

Garland announced that the school’s Gulf Coast fundraiser pulled in about $120,000. The board, he said, is looking for partners to help renovate and repair the Easton Park Bridge, leading to practice fields.

The school clinic is providing dental and medical services for students. The board agreed to modify the dental services contract, to require that the dentist remit $100 a day to the school. The clinic is expected to cost the school $24,000 in this, its first year, and to gross $18,000.

A motion was approved to make Arthur Hardy and Sal Genovese ex-officio board members.

Warren Easton will host the Eastbank Collaborative of Charter Schools mixer on Nov. 2 from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. This will be an opportunity for board members from many OPSB schools to meet.

In a curriculum committee report, board member Delle said the school is starting a peer-review system as it looks toward implementation of Common Core State Standards, which require more teacher collaboration.

In fundraising news, the Easton Weekend is being planned, the event will include a golf tournament and dance. The Hall of Fame event has been scheduled for May 18. Last year 15 students were awarded scholarships at the event.

The board passed a motion to allocate $1,500 so five students can participate in the Grow Dat garden project. The board also agreed to give Easton an ice machine purchased last fall. The board approved spending $250 to sponsor one student to attend the Anti-Defamation League weekend conference in Washington, D.C., in November.

The board went into a members-only executive session, to discuss how the school publicizes itself, then adjourned at 7:45 p.m.

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