Members of the Einstein Charter School board of directors approved new bylaws at their monthly meeting, May 1.  The board had been revising the bylaws throughout the school year.

Member Laurin Jacobsen reviewed changes with the board prior to the vote:

  • Terms will last two years, with a limit of two consecutive terms.
  • Members may hold an office for one year, but may not hold the same office for consecutive terms.
  • New members will be brought on in June.
  • Elections for offices will be held each July.

The board made one final amendment before approving the bylaws as distributed. The original draft called for a minimum of seven board members. The resignation of TK Tieu in April reduced the board to six members, the number approved by amendment in order to pass the bylaws.

Principal Shawn Toranto updated the board on correspondence with the Recovery School District regarding building repairs. After forwarding a critical needs list to the RSD, Toranto was told a facility assessment would be completed but doubts it has been. She said she is concerned the renovations may not start in time to be completed when school reopens for the coming year. Renovations include extensive roof repair and kitchen work.

The board plans to meet with RSD representatives to discuss the matter.

The school’s business manager Doug Guidry said there were no major changes in the school’s financial condition but that $498,790 in reimbursements is outstanding.

“That’s an awful lot of money for us to be fronting at this time in the year,” Guidry said.

Member Ryan Bennett asked how the figure compares to accounts receivable at other schools.

“Yes, we’re all in the same boat,” Guidry said.  He believes Einstein will receive around “$300,000 in the next month or so.”

The board will hold a public hearing to review the school’s 2012-13 budget on June 5 at 5 p.m., offering the public a chance to comment. The budget will be available for review in the front office beginning 10 days before the hearing.

In other school updates, Toranto said she anticipates receiving LEAP scores by May 18.  She also informed the board of Einstein’s “Jazzed for Education” concert on May 24, the last day of school.

Board president Ramona Perkins asked members to form an ad hoc committee to oversee the interviewing and orientation of potential board members.  Jacobsen, Bennett and Susanna Evangelista volunteered to serve on the committee.

The board approved minutes from their April meeting.

Members Perkins, Bennett, Jacobsen, Evangelista and Margaret Nguyen were present. Toranto and Guidry were in attendance, as was a reporter from The Lens.

The meeting began at 6 p.m. and ended at 7:39 p.m.  The next meeting will be June 5, following the 5 p.m. budget hearing.

Marta Jewson

Marta Jewson covers education in New Orleans for The Lens. She began her reporting career covering charter schools for The Lens and helped found the hyperlocal news site Mid-City Messenger. Jewson returned...