Trenum Request Moving End of Year Items from Discussion to Action

| June 20, 2018 | 0 Comments | Education

Gil Trenum, Brentsville representative to the Prince William County School Board.

Wednesday, June 20 is the last Prince William County School Board meeting for the 2017-18 school year, and Brentsville School Board member Gil Trenum said that several items he had proposed to be on the agenda in late May are being considered for discussion.

Trenum is proposing to update instructional objectives, improve the personal leave policy in favor of teachers, further discount out of county tuition for children of employees, eliminate interim reports and require non classroom administrations to spend time in the classroom.

As it is the end of the year, Trenum is asking that anyone who feels strongly that these measures (listed below) be taken up by the school board for action, please write to their school board members.

“As discussion, we cannot vote or direct the Superintendent to take action on any of these,” he wrote on his Facebook page.

He said he proposed them on May 25, and there was “ample time to get them on the agenda.”

Trenum said they are pro-teacher proposals.

“I have been talking about looking at low-cost ways to demonstrate to our staff that they are appreciated and valued and to help improve morale, which does feed in to improved retention rates.”

He said that most of his proposals have no discernible cost, with the exception being the discounted tuition. Right now, teachers can pay 75% tuition for their children. This would reduce it to 50%.

The tuition amendment will have a costs, but I believe that the cost is minimal. We currently have 42 students in the entire division that are paying tuition, eleven of them are children of PWCS staff.

Assuming that the tuition is approximately $6K for in-state students and that staff are already getting a 25% discount we are talking about an extra 25% ($1500) for eleven students … less that $17K for everyone currently affected.

I believe that is in our interest to have our staff’s families invested in the success of the school division and this is a small cost for the morale benefit that it can have. I don’t believe that it will result in a wave of new students enrolling from out of the county but if a few more of our staff members, especially those that might not have been able to afford it before, want their kids to attend PWCS I think that is a good thing for us.

Potomac School Board member Justin Wilk said he is interested in hearing Trenum’s proposals. He does not know if there will be time to address them before the end of the fiscal year. 

He said the agenda has just been packed at the last few meetings, and he would not want to rush votes that need discussion and reflection.

Of all the votes, he said the tuition change would require the most research. Not only will there be a monetary cost, he said, but one has to consider if schools have the room to take in more students.

Regulation 601-1 Instructional Objectives: “This regulation hasn’t been updated since July 1, 1990. I would like an action item to direct the Superintendent to update this regulation in accordance with current policies and practices and to present it to the school board for information at the first or second school board meeting of the 2018-2019 school year.”

Regulation 542.05-1 Personal Leave:

Trenum asks that the school board amend the division’s personal leave regulation, so that taking a personal leave on a shortened day is not recorded as a full day leave when days are rolled over to the subsequent school year.

”Personal leave shall not be cumulative on a year-to-year basis. Unused days/hours/minutes shall be converted to sick leave at the beginning of each year of employment.”

Amendment: “Personal Leave will be charged in 15 minute increments. If personal leave is taken for a full day that has been shortened in accordance with the approved school calendar or as a result of delayed start/early closure due to inclement weather, the employee will only be charged leave for the actual number of hours they would have worked on that day.

Regulation 346-1 Tuition:

Students residing outside of the county can attend Prince William County Schools by paying tuition. Currently, for the 2018-19 school year, employees living outside of the county can send their children to PWCS for a 25% discount. Trenum would like to increase that discount to 50%.

Trenum would like an action item to direct the Superintendent to update paragraph II.D. to read as follows:

Effective with the 2018-19 school year, the children of PWCS employees will receive a 50 percent reduction of the yearly tuition rate. The terms of payment will be the same as in II. C. Children of school-based employees that have a life-threatening illness where their attending physician has provided written justification of the importance of having the student co-located with their parent shall have tuition waived for those years in which the student is at the same facility as the parent.

5.I would like an info/action item to discuss and possibly direct the superintendent to implant a plan to eliminate interim reports beginning in the 2018-2019 school year,” said Trenum. 

6. “I would like to add and info/action item to discuss and possibly direct the superintendent to design and implement a plan for having all certificated staff not actively in a teaching position (i.e. directly interacting with students on a daily basis) to spend at least one day per semester in the classroom beginning in the 2018-2019 school year,” said Trenum.

“I expect that the discussion might reveal that we want some of our staff to spend more time than that in the classroom. We might also want to provide guidance as to what type of classes or at what grade levels they should teach.”

cartagenacl@pwcs.edu

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