SAC Meeting Minutes...

SAC Meeting Minutes

November 1, 2016


  • Larry Ruble (SAC Representative) called the meeting to order at 7:02.
    • Tamar Walters (SAC Vice Chair) not in attendance.


  • Previous Meeting Minutes reviewed by Larry Ruble.
    • Suggested that meetings do not necessarily need printed copies of the minutes.
    • Copies should be available online (sorry last month was inadvertently overlooked).


  • SIP Discussion and Approval presented by Andrea Gunns (Assistant Principal):
    • Entire SIP document going online; handout highlights goals; outlining where we need to focus to achieve goals above 2015-2016 results.
    • Huge jump in ELA and math lowest 25% goals – put things in place to achieve this; continue to work towards additional advancement in all areas.
    • Progress monitoring tools along the way to see if we are successfully working towards these objectives.
    • First Objective for 2016-17 school year is to increase proficiency and learning.
      • What are barriers holding us back from achieving goals and strategies to address?
        • Professional Learning Communities meetings (PLC) didn’t target specifics.  Trying to focus on this data with interventions and enrichments.
        • Stephanie Evans asked if this would include one on one teaching if necessary? Decisions to be based on grade level and general assessment.
        • More switching of classrooms and working strategically to achieve optimal student coverage and opportunity (moving cheeses around).
        • Data room/wall – moving kids forward or finding out why after discussing the assessments.
        • Standards keep moving; how do we help kids catch up who are already behind?
        • Different kids lacking basic background knowledge.
        • Changing teacher training on new programs, thinking maps, phonics program, etc.
        • Dr. Millins discussed purchase of new Phonics Program; what has happened in past is that kids learn phonics one way in K, another way in 1st and 2nd.  Consistent pieces of learning need to be implemented.
        • Need to focus on all children; lower and higher achievers on both ends. 
        • Family nights for teaching parents as well!
        • Arts integration w/education emphasis.
  • Second Objective is to create a safe learning environment necessary for academic and behavioral success for all students.
    • Attendance rates are high; working on reducing late arrivals.
    • Disengaged parents; tools and strategy to use at home; more parent involvement. 

SAC Meeting Minutes
November 1, 2016
Page Two

  • Second Objective is to create a safe learning environment necessary for academic and behavioral success for all students. (continued…)
    • Trying to get parents to give another look if they had a bad experience here; single parents working hard with little available time, etc.
    • Continue to focus on strategies to address barriers and effectively support this goal.
  • Dr. Millins further discussed how K-8 schools are factored differently, and consequently need to fire on all cylinders in all grade levels.
    • Global focus as opposed to more narrow focus of past.
  • Ms. Hercek mentioned that moving from 20% to 47% in Math is fairly intimidating.  Feels like we are doing everything we can do; do you really think that percentage of improvement is attainable? 
  • Dr. Millins feels that if we work towards the goal, and continue to strive for it, we won’t have to worry about it, the improvement will happen.
  • Larry Ruble mentioned that some goals have been mandated by the district.
  • Dr. Adkins want us to continue to make gains; we should do much better this year.


  • Larry Ruble requests a motion to accept the SIP.

Ms. Hercek so motions, Bernice Ortega seconds the motion.

The SIP is accepted with unanimous approval.


  • Ms. Dutko (Assistant Principal) gave a presentation on school safety.
    • District requires fire drill every month; two for first two months.
      • Need to move out of lunchrooms; media center,
      • Timed and end with a cleared building; this data submitted to district monthly.
  • Also have tornado drill; lockdown drill; code yellow (locked but still able to teach) drill.
  • Most serious drill is lockdown drill; having one this week.
    • Teachers turn off lights, go to an area where you can’t see in (closets).
    • Doors are required to be locked at all times; bathrooms/clinic/media center., etc. to be directed by an adult.
    • Green and red cards communicate thru windows.
  • 32 cameras in building; security specialist up and running all day.  You can see fairly specific details on these videos. 
  • Dismissals and drop offs procedures very detailed; moving people everywhere.  Every single teacher is utilized.  End of day sweeps, clearing all areas from 2:10pm to 2:30pm.
  • No one unsupervised at any time.
  • Different levels of urgency:
    • Level 1 – Not an emergency; administration not needed or not needed immediately.
    • Level 2 – Administration representative needed immediately.
    • Level 3 – Administration representative or behavior specialist needed immediately w/backup.


SAC Meeting Minutes
November 1, 2016
Page Three


  • Making minor adjustments to create more supervision, more emphasis on safety. 
    • Example:  Students housed in media center for pickup; nobody needs to change anything for rainy day dismissals.
      • We do not have multiple awnings so we can’t dismiss more than one bus at a time in inclement weather.
  • Caloosa has a buzz in system; we are considering this for the front office?
    • Early morning front doors are left open; anyone can walk in.  Possibly post security at front?
  • Safety plan submitted for lock down drill…some go to command center, everyone has somewhere to go. 
    • District will send info out to parents in the event of a school lockdown or emergency.
      • Bernice Ortega mentioned lag time from District sending info from NFMHS. 
      • Millins said important to get info to parents out asap to keep everyone away from school in event of an emergency. 
  • More safety discussions planned for next meeting.


  • Baseline-Quarter 1 Results presented by Dr. Millins (Principal):
    • Dr. Millins was 1 of 3 school administrators asked to present to the school board; getting positive data and discussing how to achieve positive results.
    • Data room:  # of kids in each bucket; want to increase upward movement in learning buckets.
    • Star Reports provide data to assess, analyze, and use to adjust techniques.
    • Below benchmarks (red) & meets/exceeds (yellow) & advanced (green & blue) buckets.
    • Percentiles are given as nationwide data. 
    • Sending home document for star reports to educate parents as to where their children are at currently and to show progress and development over time.
    • Tests given the first week of school, and at the end of the 1st quarter for comparison.
    • Some random examples of improvement over the quarter:
      • Kg- ELA scores moved from 43% to 57% in top category; moved from 56% to 43% in low category.
      • 1st g-ELA scores went from 51% to 79%; Math from 63% to 82%.
      • 3rd g-ELA went from 50% to 61%; Math 66% to 88%.  Lowest category went from 50% to 39%, with only 14% in lower group.
      • MS – 6th – ELA went from 39% to 45%; Math from 43% - 45%.
  • This is proficiency only; and while biggest gains are on elementary side, the MS are moving positively as well.
  • Star test adjusts according to student in MS; had to train teachers in this.
  • Dr. Adkins wanted to measure K-12; no K-8 school was an “A” last year.  No different criteria for these schools.


SAC Meeting Minutes
November 1, 2016
Page Four


  • Larry Ruble called for good of the order discussions:
    • DAC – election of officers for school year; Bernice Ortega typically covers High School meetings, Larry Ruble covers Elementary. Currently no one to cover DAC Middle School breakout sessions. 
    • Wednesday, November 16 meeting to primarily be about transportation.
    • Larry Ruble will ask for lobbyist for separate grading criteria for K-8 schools?
    • ESE Committee for the district holding event November 5, 8:15-1:30pm “Sharing the Commitment”.  Open forum for ESE issues.  Gulf Coast HS in Naples.  Https://


  • Bernice Ortega motioned to adjourn; Daniel Ortega seconded motion.

Larry Ruble adjourned meeting at 8:10pm.













North Ft. Myers Academy for the Arts
Kindergarten through 8th Grade
A Title 1 School

North Ft. Myers Academy for the Arts
SAC Meeting Minutes
September 6, 2016

  • Bernice Ortega (School Advisory Committee - SAC Representative) opened meeting at 7:05pm:
    • Introduced herself and Dr. Millins (Principal).
    • Discussed intention to more closely observe and follow by-laws.


  • Overview of NFMAA School Objectives/Goals and School Grades (Dr. Thomas Millins):
    • Parents and Administration want:
      • Safe School Environment
      • Successful and Focused Academics
      • Thriving Arts Programs
  • 2 days into his new position, NFMAA downgraded to a “C” (40 schools dropped).
  • Is confident that the plans and strategies being implemented will be successful.
  • Plan is good for the students, and the grades will reflect that and rise accordingly.
  • SB1642 details framework for grades calculations; we missed a “B” by 1.5 points.
  • Discussed 9 distinct components for determining school grades:
    • Achievement (% scoring 3 or higher) in:
  1. English/LA (Grades 3-8)
  2. Math (Grades 3-8)
  3. Science (Grades 5 and 8)
  4. Social Studies/Civics (Grade 7)
  • Learning Gains:
  1. English/LA
  2. Math
  • Learning Gains of the Lowest 25%:
  1. English/LA
  2. Math
  • Middle School Acceleration
  1. Advanced Math (8th Grade)
  • Looking at the percentages from all these areas provides clear direction on where focus should be to enable our students to improve and perform their best; but we need to “fire on all cylinders” to truly succeed.
  • We had the second highest “opt out” of testing in district; some of our high achieving students were in that group.
  • If we look at elementary and middle school separately, we would be very close to a “B”.
  • Discussed plans utilizing Title 1 funding to address/improve the outstanding issues and concerns:
    • K-3: Phonics Program
    • 2-3: Extra teacher to help lowest 25% push while enriching students that are mastering standards.
    • 4-5: Science instruction for 60 minutes a day (5th grade); additional 45 minutes every other day (4th grade).  Mr. Taunton teaching 4th and 5th grade science, allows other teachers to move around and assist each other, while providing push for lowest 25% and daily enrichment opportunities.
    • 6: Success class for all 6th graders.
    • 6-8: Separate reading and Eng/LA; double block math.
    • 7:  Double block civics.
    • 8:  Double block of science.

SAC Meeting Minutes
September 6, 2016
Page Two


  • Overview of NFMAA School Objectives/Goals and School Grades (Dr. Thomas Millins):
    • Individual success plans for all elementary students and lowest 25%.
    • Utilizing Schoolwide Thinking Maps.
    • Effective Professional Communities (Tuesday Teacher Meetings).
    • Diagnostic Testing (K-8), and Star Reports.
    • Implementation of effective researched based programs.
  • Discussed Parents in the Know Night – further discussion of above planned for there.
    • Wednesday, September 14, 6pm.


  • SAC Rep Discussion (Bernice Ortega):
    • By-Laws state SAC Rep needs to attend monthly district meetings.
    • Meetings are every third Wednesday from 6p-8p in Ft. Myers.
    • Meetings are structured where different professionals speak (school choice, transportation, etc.), then they split into breakout sessions.  This is where the SAC Rep can have input and influence.
    • Curriculum and issues pertaining to Lee County discussed.
    • Separate ESE Meetings held Quarterly on Thursdays 6p-8p.
    • SAC Rep brings the notes from their meeting to NFMAA’s SAC Meeting and briefs the parents and teachers.
    • District meetings are documented and published on Lee County Website.
    • From the DAC Meetings, Executive DAC (EDAC) reps go to the School Board (first Monday of the month).
    • K-8 schools can only have one SAC rep.


  • New SAC Rep Elections (Bernice Ortega):
    • Explained responsibilities for SAC positions:
    • SAC Rep:
      • Go to meetings, attend sessions, take notes.
      • Run School SAC meetings, give synopsis of District meetings.
  • Vice Chair:
    • Back up in case SAC Rep can’t make any specific meeting or responsibility.          
  • Secretary:
    • Take notes and distribute meeting minutes.


  • SAC Board Nominations (Bernice Ortega):
    • SAC Representative:
      • Mr. Larry Ruble – nominated and seconded.
      • No other nominations; unanimous decision.
  • Vice Chair:
    • Ms. Tamar Walters – nominated and seconded.
    • No other nominations; unanimous decision.
  • Secretary:
    • Ms. Kieran MacCarthy – nominated and seconded.
    • No other nominations; unanimous decision.






SAC Meeting Minutes
September 6, 2016
Page Three


  • Discussion of Title 1 Funding and Rules (Dr. Millins):
    • NFMAA has been a Title 1 school since 1976, up until the last two years. 
    • We went down two full school grades during those two years.
    • Came back this year, which meant a $430,000 in funding to the school.
    • Comes with fairly stringent rules and requirements; school must be in compliance to maintain status.
    • Everything documented (Linda Verdream) to insure money is spent properly.
    • Requires a Parent Involvement Specialist (Linda Verdream) to encourage parental involvement in the education process; looking to share decision making between the family and the school.
    • Must maintain timely notifications regarding teacher qualifications, etc.




Bernice Ortega motioned to adjourn at 8:13pm.
Larry Ruble (and everyone else) seconded!
Meeting Adjourned at 8:13pm.








North Ft. Myers Academy for the Arts
Kindergarten through 8th Grade
A Title 1 School