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August 17, 2020 at 7:30 PM - Regular Meeting

1. Call to Order at 7:30 P.M.
2. Roll Call
Description:  School Board:    Shane Kilen, Carrie Jo Howard, Joseph Melby, Kurt Stenberg,
                           Brandon Kuznia, Laurie Stromsodt and Allison Harder

Administration:   Superintendent Larry Guggisberg, Principal Sharon Schultz
3. Listening Session
Description:  All speakers are asked to complete the Listening Session Sign-in Form including as much detail as possible and including a printed / written copy of your presentation if one is available. This is an opportunity for the Board to listen, the Board will not engage in dialogue. As a general rule, the Board will not comment on or respond to any comments made by speakers. Please do not include names of Greenbush Middle River employees or representatives, their title, or location in your remarks for your own legal protection and the legal rights of staff.

Each speaker will have five (5) minutes to speak: speakers may not roll their time to another speaker. Speakers will be timed and are asked to complete their comments in this time frame. Board members may ask questions if needed.  Please begin your presentation by stating your name and topic only.
In the spirit of fairness to all participants, we request that you respect the format above. Thank you for taking the time today to attend this meeting and share your concerns and suggestions.

Due to the COVID-19 outbreak, members of the public may wish to email Board communication(s) to <>
4. Recommendation to add items to the agenda from Board members or School Administrators
5. Approval of Agenda as presented / Amended
5.1. A motion was made by  ____________________, seconded by ____________________ to approve the agenda of the August 17, 2020 Regular Board Meeting as presented/amended.
Roll Call Vote
6. Minutes
6.1. A motion was made by  ____________________, seconded by ____________________ to approve the minutes of the preceding Special meeting of August 6, 2020.
see attached
Roll Call Vote
Attachments: (1)
6.2. A motion was made by ___________________, seconded by ________________ to approve the minutes of the preceding Special Work Session meeting of July 29, 2020.
see attached
Roll Call Vote
Attachments: (1)
6.3. A motion was made by ___________________, seconded by  ____________________ to approve the minutes of the preceding Special Meeting of July 20, 2020.
see attached
Roll Call Vote
Attachments: (1)
7. Business Services
7.1. A motion was made by  ____________________, seconded by ____________________ to approve the payment of bills check #37449 through #37501 for a total of $141,866.21 and Purchasing Card electronic payments dated July 6, 2020 and Electronic Funds Transfers as submitted.
see attachments
Roll Call Vote
Attachments: (3)
7.2. Treasurer's Report
Attachments: (1)
7.3. Greenbush Middle River School District Budget to Actual Expenditure Report  (as previously requested by board member to provide on monthly basis).
Description:   As requested by board member, document will be provided on monthly basis.

Budget consists of 6 fund balances:

o  01 General Fund
o  02 Food Service
o  04 Community Services
o  07 Debt Redemption
o  08 Scholarships
o  09 Student Activities
• *see attached
Attachments: (1)
8. Significant School Events and Communication:
Description:  Board acceptance of donations to the School
Roll Call Vote

Anonymous donation to pay for school lunch accounts in arrears .. $1,000.00

City of Greenbush donation to FCCLA for service contract for picking up debris from the 4th of July community event....................................  $250.00

Central Boiler made a donation of 30 water bottles for students in need 

HELPP Inc.donation to pay for school lunch accounts in arrears .. $1,000.00
Help Ease Local People's Pain (HELPP) is based out of Warroad. HELPPInc is a non-profit organization based in Warroad,  It was formed to meet emergency financial needs in the Roseau and Lake of the Woods Counties.

A motions was made by __________________ and seconded by _______________ to accept the afore-mentioned donations to the School District.
9. Old Business
9.1. Resolution relating to the election of school board members and calling the school district general election
Description:  Three seats on the GMR School Board are up for election during the November 3, 2020 General Election.  (see attached).  The filing period was from July 28 through August 11, 2020.

As per election law, the Board must pass a resolution relating to the election of school board members and calling the school district general election. 
See attached

10. New Business:
10.1. GMR Staffing for 2020-2021

Description:  New Industrial Technology Teacher - Mr. John Moore

New 5th Grade Teacher - Mrs. Robin Waage

New Special Education Teacher - Mrs. Karis Musker

New Music Teacher - Mrs. Melina Helle
10.1.a. Board approval of resignation of Para Professional
Roll Call Vote
Description:  Motion by Board member _______________________ and seconded by ______________ to approve the resignation of para professional Mrs. Leslie Sondreal. 
10.1.b. Board approval of resignation of Para Professional
Roll Call Vote
Description:  Motion by Board member _______________________ and seconded by ______________ to approve the resignation of para professional Ms. Hayley Olson. 
10.2. Board approval of COVID-19 Face Covering Policy (Optional Policy)
Description:  The Minnesota Department of Education’s Safe Learning Plan (July 2020) states that a masking policy is required for in-person and hybrid learning for the 2020-2021 school year. MDE clarified that compliance with Executive Order 20-81 is required and that adoption of a formal school district policy is optional. School districts are not required to adopt a new policy, though they may do so if they choose.

The MSBA model policy echoes the Executive Order's requirements for employees, students, and other persons (including visitors, guests, contractors, etc.) present on school property to wear face coverings in classrooms, preschool, child care settings and other indoor areas, as well as outdoor areas where a physical distance of 6 feet cannot be maintained between persons, in order to minimize exposure to COVID-19.

see attached

Board Option:  

A motion was made by _____________________ seconded by _____________ to approve MSBA model policy 808:  COVID-19 Face Covering Policy.

Roll Call Vote
Attachments: (1)
10.3. Board adoption of revised Title IX Sex Nondiscrimination Policy, Grievance Procedure and Process Policy as recommended by the MN School Boards Association.
Description:  As per advice from the MN School Boards Association:

On May 6, 2020, the U.S. Department of Education, Office for Civil Rights (OCR), released the long-awaited final rule amending Title IX regulations at 34 C.F.R. Part 106. These regulations, which go into effect on August 14, 2020, are the first Title IX regulations applicable to sexual harassment and are applicable to complaints by both school district students and employees.

The extensive regulations will require districts to revise their policies and procedures with respect to sexual harassment and ensure that administration and staff are trained on the new requirements.

The timing of the Title IX changes has created substantial reaction.

The National School Boards Association (NSBA) submitted a detailed letter to the U.S. Department of Education requesting it delay the implementation date. NSBA's letter notes concerns expressed by member state associations and COSA attorneys "that absent an extension of the effective date, the three-month implementation timeframe unduly burdens public school systems at an unprecedented time. Amid the coronavirus pandemic, school districts are grappling with novel operational challenges as they work to reopen schools safely in the fall. Consistent with state and national expectations, the sole priority for most school districts is to reopen schools safely for direct instruction. By requiring full compliance with the drastically amended Title IX Rule by August 14, 2020, the Department is forcing schools to redirect significant time and attention from more imminent health and safety concerns."

As of August 13, MSBA has not received word whether the U.S. Department of Education planned to delay implementation. School districts must comply with the Final Rule beginning on August 14.

Accordingly, school districts are encouraged to adopt the policy in a reasonable timeframe in light of school reopening and other critically important challenges that they face. However, districts should not wait until the policy is adopted to begin complying with the policy. Each school district should identify the individuals who will serve as the district’s Title IX Personnel and secure appropriate training for them reasonably soon, and if a school district learns of sexual harassment allegations on or after August 14, 2020, the district’s response should adhere to the policy even if issue arises before the policy has been adopted by the school district.

The Title IX Policy recommended by MSBA is attached.

Key provisions of the Department of Education's new Title IX regulation:
(source:  U.S. Dept. of Education)

  • Defines sexual harassment to include sexual assault, dating violence, domestic violence, and stalking, as unlawful discrimination on the basis of sex
  • Provides a consistent, legally sound framework on which survivors, the accused, and schools can rely
  • Requires schools to offer clear, accessible options for any person to report sexual harassment
  • Empowers survivors to make decisions about how a school responds to incidents of sexual harassment
  • Requires schools to offer survivors supportive measures, such as class or dorm reassignments or no-contact orders
  • Protects K-12 students by requiring elementary and secondary schools to respond promptly when any school employee has notice of sexual harassment
  • Holds colleges responsible for off-campus sexual harassment at houses owned or under the control of school-sanctioned fraternities and sororities
  • Restores fairness on college and university campuses by upholding a student’s right to written notice of allegations, the right to an advisor, and the right to submit, cross-examine, and challenge evidence at a live hearing
  • Shields survivors from having to come face-to-face with the accused during a hearing and from answering questions posed personally by the accused
  • Requires schools to select one of two standards of evidence, the preponderance of the evidence standard or the clear and convincing evidence standard, and to apply the selected standard evenly to proceedings for all students and employees, including faculty
  • Provides "rape shield" protections and ensures survivors are not required to divulge any medical, psychological, or similar privileged records
  • Requires schools to offer an equal right of appeal for both parties to a Title IX proceeding  
  • Gives schools flexibility to use technology to conduct Title IX investigations and hearings remotely
  • Protects students and faculty by prohibiting schools from using Title IX in a manner that deprives students and faculty of rights guaranteed by the First Amendment

A motion was made by _____________________ seconded by _____________ to approve MSBA model policy 522:  Title IX Nondiscrimination Policy Grievance Procedure & Process Policy. 
Roll Call Vote
Attachments: (1)
10.4. Resolution for Adopting a Base Learning Model for 2020-21 School Year

See attached 2020-2021 Back to School Planning Guide

Member ______________ introduced the following resolution and moved its adoption:

Resolution Relating to Adoption of Base Learning Model for the 2020-2021 School Year and Other COVID-19 Related Matters

WHEREAS, Minnesota Statutes Section 123B.09 vests the care, management, and control of independent districts in the school board; and

WHEREAS, the Superintendent of Independent School District 2683 [hereinafter the "Superintendent"] is responsible for the management of the schools, the administration of all School District policies, and is directly accountable to the School Board; and

WHEREAS,  when responsibilities are not specifically prescribed nor School District policy applicable, the Superintendent shall use personal and professional judgment, subject to review by the School Board, pursuant to School District Policy 302, Superintendent;

WHEREAS, on March 13, 2020, Minnesota Governor Tim Walz issued Emergency Executive Order 20-01, which declared a peacetime emergency in Minnesota in response to the COVID-19 pandemic; and
WHEREAS, on July 30, 2020, Minnesota Governor Tim Walz issued Emergency Executive Order 20-82 and the Safe Learning Plan for 2020-2021 (the "Safe Learning Plan"), which set forth five Learning Models (in-person learning for all, in-person learning for elementary students and hybrid learning for secondary students, hybrid learning for all students, hybrid learning for elementary students and distance learning for secondary students, and distance learning) and authorized all school districts in the State of Minnesota to select and implement an appropriate base Learning Model in accordance with, and subject to, the Safe Learning Plan; and
WHEREAS, the Minnesota Department of Education ("MDE") has issued and may continue to issue written guidance for Minnesota schools on educational issues related to COVID-19; and

WHEREAS, the Minnesota Department of Health ("MDH") has issued and may continue to issue written guidance for Minnesota schools on public health issues related to COVID-19; and

WHEREAS, the Superintendent and the administration of the School District have conferred with the School Board regarding the available Learning Models, the current MDE and MDH requirements for each, and other relevant information; and

WHEREAS,  based upon the collective consideration of these factors,  the Superintendent has  recommended to the School Board that  K-12 in-person learning  will be the  base Learning Model to be implemented at the commencement of the 2020-2021 school year.
NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, by the School Board of Independent School District No. 2683 as follows:

Section 1:    The Superintendent is hereby directed to implement the following base Learning Model to open the 2020-2021 school year:  [INSERT DESCRIPTION OF LEARNING PLAN TO BE ADOPTED -  NOTE: School Districts may wish to consider designating a district-wide Learning Plan or separate building-specific plans in recognition of the possibility that school buildings may be located in different counties where the localized health data may vary].

Section 2: The Superintendent is hereby authorized, after consultation with the School Board Chair and notification to the School Board, to select and implement a different Learning Model for the School District or any specific school buildings without School Board action if the Superintendent reasonably believes that prompt implementation of a different Learning Model is necessary, and that constraints of time and public health considerations render it impractical to hold a School Board meeting to approve the implementation. The Learning Model selected and implemented by the Superintendent shall continue in effect unless and until the School Board, in consultation with the Superintendent and appropriate school district staff and public health officials, deems it in the best interest of the School District and its students to implement a different Learning Model. 
Section 3:    The Superintendent will provide regular updates to the School Board regarding the School District’s efforts to implement COVID-19 related educational and public health guidance issued by the MDE and the MDH, respectively.

The motion for the adoption of the foregoing resolution was duly seconded by _____________ and upon vote being taken thereon the following voted in favor thereof:

and the following voted against the same:

whereupon said resolution was declared duly passed and adopted.

Attachments: (1)
10.5. Schedule date for School Board meeting which includes approval of Final 2020 
Pay 2021 School Tax levy
Description:  In past years, State law required a [School] Truth-in-Taxation Hearing be held separate from other School Board meetings. That rule was repealed during the 2009 legislative session.  The new law requires School Districts to discuss the school tax levy at a regularly scheduled meeting and to allow the public to speak as it pertains to that agenda item.  The Board must allow time for a presentation as well as time for public feedback.  The levy can then be adopted.

The Truth-in-Taxation calendar indicated below refers to taxes levied in 2020 and payable in 2021 for use in the 2021-2022 school [budget/fiscal] year.

Between Sept. 8 - Oct. 1:   School board members review and approve the proposed tax levy and send the certified levy to the [Home] County Auditor. 

Nov. 3:  General Election Day.  (
Referendum elections can be held only on this date)

Nov. 24:   Deadline for the County Auditor to mail a parcel-specific notice to each property owner in the Greenbush Middle River School District service area.

Between Nov. 25 and Dec. 28:   Greenbush Middle River School Board includes as a regular School Board agenda item, the Payable 2020 School Tax levy and adopts the levy during its Regular meeting.   The certified levy is sent to the [Home] County Auditor.

On or before January 7, 2021:   The certified levy is sent to the Department of Education. The certificate of Truth-in-Taxation is sent to the Minnesota Department of Revenue.
Because of the 2001 Tax Law Changes, the local levy effort for supporting school programming changed.   In the 2001 legislative session, the basic general education levy was repealed and replaced with state education aid.  As a result, local Levy authority is pretty much limited to areas such as Health & Safety, Crime Levy, Community Education (eg: Early Childhood Family Education).   
Note 1  The specific dates and timeline are established by the MN Dept. of Revenue 
Note 2  Source(s):  MN Dept. of Education & MN Department of Revenue
Note 3  Public meetings must take place at 6:00 pm or later

NOTE:  As per statute, Board meetings containing a Truth-in-Taxation agenda item cannot begin prior to 6:00 pm.

Moved by ____________ and seconded by _____________to schedule a Truth-in-Taxation Hearing (Agenda item) during the Regular Board Meeting on December 21, 2020 at 7:30 p.m. in the School Cafeteria during which the Board will address and approve the Final 2020 Pay 2021 School Tax levy as an Agenda item.
Roll Call vote                                                                

10.6.  Price increase for School Meals as required by the National School Lunch Program 
Description:  The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) administers the National School Lunch Program (NSLP), School Breakfast Program (SBP) and After School Care Program. USDA provides cash reimbursement to public schools, private nonprofit schools and residential child care institutions for nutritious meals and snacks served to children in preschool through grade 12 at a minimal cost.  

Families may apply for meals served free or at a reduced price based on the income level of the household.  

National School Lunch Program (under the Dept. of Agriculture) is the responsible Agency for School Meals across the country.  The Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010 requires School Food Authorities (SFAs) participating in the National School Lunch Program to ensure sufficient funds are provided to the nonprofit school food service account for lunches served to students not eligible for free or reduced price meals.  

An SFA (ie: GMR) will be in compliance with 2020-2021 Paid Lunch Equity (PLE) requirements if the SFA plans to charge students the "full" 2020-21 paid lunch price or more.  OR:  An SFA will be in compliance with 2020-21 requirements if the SFA plans to raise its lunch price by at least 10 cents. 

Meals are grouped into three categories: 
(1) Free  (2) Free and Reduced Price; and (3) Paid.  Each category of meal contains federal and state subsidies.   

Proposed GMR Meal Prices
Kindergarten              Breakfast                  Lunch           Milk              
                                    $0.00                       $2.25           .35               

Grade 1-6                     $1.40                      $2.25           .35               

Grade 7-12                   $1.45                      $2.30           .35              

Adult / Staff                   $2.00                      $3.85          .35                     
                                 (no change)

- GMR does not charge for the Full cost of student meals;

Options for School Meal pricing in 2020-2021 as defined by Child Nutrition Services within the MN Dept. of Education:

GMR must increase its school meal prices to the full amount; or

GMR must increase its school meal prices to a 10 cent maximum.

Adult meal prices are determined by the MDE (not school lunch program).

Suggested Board Action:   Moved by ___________________ and seconded by _________________ to increase school meal prices by 10 cents.
Roll Call vote
10.7. Due to Covid-19, Board approval to suspend the following programs/activities/events which have been a part of school life in the GMR School.
Description:  Due to Covid-19, the School Administration is recommending the suspension of the following programs/activities/events which have been a part of school life in the GMR School.

Program / Activity / Event to be suspended: 

(1)  Before school "Open House"

Reason:  Reduce visitors to school
(2)  Non-essential visitors to school                                           

Reason: Reduce visitors to school

(3)  Open Lunch (12th grade)                               

Reason:  Reduce exposure outside of school during the school day
(4)  Eliminate Pre-Payment of School Meals         

Reason:  Uncertainty of when school will be in session in 2020-2021
(5)   Suspend Fall Muscial
Reason:   Avoid congregating (play practice, back stage, shared microphones, etc.) and visitors to school (public performance)

Motion by __________________ and seconded by _____________________ to suspend the traditional before school Open House, suspend non-essential visitors to school, suspended Open Lunch for 12 grade students, eleminate pre-pay of school meals for the 2020-2021 school year and suspend the Fall Musical.
Roll Call vote
11. Reports:
11.1. Superintendent
11.1.a. Tax Credit for School Supplies
Description:  As parents prepare for the upcoming school year, the MN Dept. of Revenue asks schools to spread the word to families about state tax programs that help pay for education expenses
The Minnesota K-12 Education Subtraction and the K-12 Education Credit. Many families do not know about, or take advantage of, these valuable tax benefits.
These benefits can reduce parents’ taxes and increase their refund, but only if they
save their receipts.
For more information, parents are encouraged to visit the MN Dept. of Revenue website

<> and type K-12 Promotional Materials in the Search box.

see attached
Attachments: (1)
11.1.b. Public information efforts relating to Special Ballot question for an operating referendum as a part of the November 3, 2020 General Election
Description:  What means should the District desire to use towards providing the public information relating to Special Ballot question for an operating referendum as a part of the November 3, 2020 General Election?

In-person meeting(s) with various physical distancing safeguards;
Local Newspaper;
Virtual Meetings (eg:  Zoom);
Social Media;
Attachments: (1)
11.1.c. Report on Joint Sports Sharing
Description:  Reduction in expenditures over the previous year as a result school closure (March tthrough May 2020) due to COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic.
see attached
Attachments: (4)
12. Adjournment
Motion by__________________        Second by ____________________ to ADJOURN
13. Communications
  • Regular September School Board Meeting - September 21, 2020 @ 7:30 p.m. in GMR School Cafeteria
  • On-site School District Financial Audit is Sept. 22-25
  • General Election on November 3, 2020

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