Superintendent's Report

Superintendent Report

From: Mike Tracy, Superintendent

Date: 09-06-17

To: RSU # 74 School Board

I. Legal/Risk:

A. Current Legal Update:


II. Governance / Policy:

A. Current Local Update:

1. Next REGULAR RSU #74 Board Meeting is scheduled forth October 4th at 6:00 pm @Embden

Community Center.

2. Building and Grounds Sub Committee Meeting is scheduled for September 13th at 6:00 pm.

3. Library and Technology Sub Committee Meeting is scheduled for September 20th at 6:00 pm.

B. a. MSMA Updates:

(This next section is simply a list of approved legislation affecting education in Maine)

L.D. 28, PL. Ch. 26—An Act To Allow Alternate Flashing Headlights on a School Bus This bill allows a school bus to

be equipped with a device that provides for alternate flashing of the school bus’s headlights. Became law without

the Governor’s signature.

L.D. 127, Resolve Ch. 12—Resolve, Regarding Legislative Review of Portions of Chapter 101: Maine Unified

Special Education Regulation Birth to Age 20, a Major Substantive Rule of the Department of Education This law

affects the way in which students can be identified as having a specific learning disability (SLD), a designation

that affects nearly 50 percent of students with special needs. It replaces a numerical formula with language from

federal guidelines that requires the student exhibit patterns of strengths and weaknesses determined to be

relevant to the identification of an SLD. The IEP Team is to consider the following in making a determination:

response to intervention; classroom performance data; achievement data; and, cognitive processing data.

Guidance will be provided by the Department of Education regarding the new language. EMERGENCY – Signed by

the Governor, June 2, 2017

L.D. 138, PL. Ch. 65—An Act To Amend the Laws Governing the Sex Offender Registry This bill requires a person

to register on the registry of sex offenders maintained by the Department of Public Safety, Bureau of State Police,

State Bureau of Identification when that person is a teacher, employee or other official having instructional,

supervisory or disciplinary authority who is convicted of a Class D or Class C offense of gross sexual assault,

unlawful sexual contact or unlawful sexual touching and the victim, regardless of the victim's age, is a student

over whom that person has control. Class D sex offenses are considered Tier I offenses, requiring the offender to

register for up to 10 years, and Class C sex offenses are considered Tier II offenses, requiring the offender to

register for up to 25 years. Became law without the Governor’s signature.

L.D. 256, PL. Ch. 244—An Act To Ensure Continued Availability of High-speed Broadband Internet at Maine's

Schools and Libraries This bill caps the prepaid wireless telecommunications service fee that is contributed to the

telecommunications education access fund at 21¢ per retail transaction and caps the fee levied on voice network

service providers other than prepaid wireless telecommunications service providers to no more than 21¢ per

month per line or number, assessed as a monthly surcharge. The amendment requires the Department of Education and the Maine State Library to jointly submit a report by January 15, 2018, to the Joint Standing

Committee on Energy, Utilities and Technology that includes detailed information on how the

telecommunications education access fund is used. Veto Overridden

L.D. 398, Resolve Ch. 21—Resolve, To Establish the Task Force To Recognize Computer Science in the Path to

Proficiency This resolve directs the Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics Council to form a

computer science education task force to consider ways to develop an informed strategy to integrate computer

science into the State’s proficiency-based high school diploma requirements, as well as to expose all students to

computer science as a basic skill and as a potential career path. Became law without the Governor’s signature.

L.D. 404, Resolve Ch. 20—Resolve, Regarding Legislative Review of Portions of Chapter 115: Certification,

Authorization and Approval of Education Personnel, a Latefiled Major Substantive Rule of the State Board of

Education This resolve provides for legislative review of portions of Chapter 115: Certification, Authorization and

Approval of Education Personnel, a major substantive rule of the State Board of Education that was filed outside

the legislative rule acceptance period. EMERGENCY – Signed by the Governor

L.D. 642, Resolve Ch. 26—Resolve, To Establish the Task Force To Identify Special Education Cost Drivers and

Innovative Approaches to Services This resolve establishes the Task Force To Identify Special Education Cost

Drivers and Innovative Approaches to Services. The creation of this task force was a result of a MSBA resolution

to address the rising cost of special education while making sure student needs are met. The task force will

include a School Board member, superintendent, two special education directors, a principal, school finance

manager, teacher, parent, student and someone from the Department of Education, as well as a House and

Senate member from the Education Committee. EMERGENCY – Veto Overridden, August 2, 2017

L.D. 678, PL. Ch. 247—An Act To Protect Students from Identity Theft This bill requires a public school or private

school, if asking for a student’s Social Security number, to inform the student's parent or guardian for what

purpose the Social Security number will be used and to provide the parent, guardian or student with the

opportunity to opt out of providing the Social Security number. Became law without the Governor’s signature.

L.D. 785, PL. Ch. 132—An Act To Improve Safety and Traffic Efficiency near School Grounds This bill clarifies that

failure to obey a school crossing guard is a traffic infraction. It provides that school crossing guards are under the

control of a local law enforcement agency only and not a school administrative unit and requires a school

crossing guard to complete training approved by the Department of Labor, continued on page 4 There are a

number of very important pieces of legislation that have been carried over to the second regular session as noted

below. Education and Cultural Affairs Committee

L.D. 49—An Act To Improve Science and Engineering Education for Maine's Students

L.D. 51—An Act Regarding the Withdrawal of a Single Municipality from a Regional School Unit

L.D. 228—An Act To Amend the Mathematics Requirements for High School Graduation

L.D. 334—An Act To Clarify the Uses of the Fund To Advance Public Kindergarten to Grade 12 Education MSMA

Legislative News, August 2017 Page 4 continued on page 5 Bureau of Labor Standards in order to control traffic

on a public way. It also clarifies a school crossing guard may direct traffic only in an intersection with a marked

crosswalk on a public way and may not contradict or override a lighted traffic or pedestrian control device.

Became law without the Governor’s signature.

L.D. 917, Resolve Ch. 14—Resolve, To Require a Review of the State Employee and Teacher Retirement Plan This

resolve directs the Maine Public Employees Retirement System and the Department of Administrative and

Financial Services, within their existing resources, to jointly convene and provide necessary staffing assistance to

a working group to evaluate and design retirement plan options for all state employees and teachers. The Maine

Public Employees Retirement System is directed to submit its recommendations, including any necessary

implementing legislation, to the Legislature no later than January 1, 2018. EMERGENCY – Veto Overridden, June

7, 2017

L.D. 1104, PL. Ch. 155—An Act To Exempt School Resource Officers from Department of Education Background

Check and Fingerprinting Requirements This bill exempts from the school personnel background check and

fingerprinting requirements active duty law enforcement officers from a local law enforcement agency with

jurisdiction over a school’s premises, commonly called school resource officers, who assist with school security,

safety, emergency preparedness or emergency response or has been assigned other responsibilities concerning

the school by the school or the local law enforcement agency. Signed by the Governor

L.D. 1113, PL. Ch. 238—An Act To Improve Antihunger Programs in Maine Schools This bill requires the

Department of Education to develop and make available to public schools an Internet-based application for

eligible students for free or reduced-price meals under the National School Lunch Program. It also provides that if

a public school implements an Internet-based application process, the public school is required to maintain paper

applications for school meals. Became law without the Governor’s signature.

L.D. 1269, PL. Ch. 191—An Act To Adjust the Procedure for Recounts in Certain Municipal Elections This bill

changes the deadline for requesting a recount in a municipal election to 7 business days after the election. It also

says that a referendum recount must be granted upon written application of 10 percent or 100 of registered

voters, whichever is less, in a municipality. To the extent that municipal school election procedures applied to

school districts prior to the enactment of this law, this could affect municipal school units. Became law without

the Governor’s signature. Second Session— Carry over bills

L.D. 1334, P&S 9—An Act To Authorize the Town of Atkinson To Withdraw from School Administrative District No.

41 This bill authorizes the Town of Atkinson, which formed School Administrative District No. 41 with other

municipalities pursuant to Private and Special Law 1965, chapter 68, to withdraw from School Administrative

District No. 41 if it meets the requirements of the Maine Revised Statutes, Title 20-A, section 1466. Became law

without the Governor’s signature.

L.D. 1335, PL. Ch. 269—An Act To Provide Youth Mental Health First Aid Training to Secondary School Health

Educators This bill requires a School Administrative Unit to establish a program to ensure health educators

receive training in youth mental health first aid, if it has received federal funding, private funding or other

funding specifically for that purpose. Became law without the Governor’s signature.

L.D. 1569, PL. Ch. 235—An Act To Revise Certification Statutes for Educational Personnel This bill amends the

laws governing the credentialing process for teachers, educational specialists and administrators to bring them in

alliance with rule changes in Chapter 115 adopted under

L.D. 404. Signed by the Governor L.D. 1576, PL. Ch. 171—An Act To Enable Earlier Introduction of Career and

Technical Education in Maine Schools This bill amends the career and technical education laws to enable career

and technical education programs to serve students in grades 6 to 8. Signed by the Governor

FY16 funds can be completed.

C. Legislative Update:

Same as MSMA Update.

D. Policy Update:

For the past several years, the July-August issue the MSMA issue Policy Development News has

featured a summary of the bills passed by the Maine Legislature that would require boards to take action to

adopt or revise policies. Despite the length of the First Session of the 128 th Legislature which adjourned in

August 2, 2017, Maine lawmakers enacted no legislation that would necessitate revision of school board


This does not mean that boards will have no policy work to do, since changes in Federal law and in State and

Federal regulations also impact board policy.

This issue of Policy Development News is devoted to the obligations of school boards and school administrators

in using federal funds in the operations of the schools. The source of these obligations is the Uniform Grant

Guidance, a compilation of federal regulations that apply to processes for acquiring goods and services through

federal funds that are received directly or as a "pass through" from the State.

Included in the latest MSMA update are three revised MSMA sample policies:

BCB – Board Member Conflict of Interest

DJ – Bidding/Purchasing Requirements

DJH – Purchasing and Contracting: Procurement Staff Code of Conduct

We have also provided the sample Federal Procurement Manual developed by Drummond Woodsum attorneys

Bill Stockmeyer and Aga (Pinette) Dixon .

III. Budget and Finance:

A. State Level:

Nothing new to report.

B. Finance Local:

Mr. Tracy will be visiting local towns to discuss the budget process this fall.

IV. Operations:

A. Regional Collaboration Efforts:

Discussions of collaboration with MSAD #59 and MSAD #13 continue and district representatives will convene at

their first ad hoc committee meeting on September 21, 2017 at Solon Elementary School. Mr. Tracy had a

meeting at the Commissioner of Education’s office in Augusta on Wednesday August 30th, 2017 and will update

the full board at their next meeting. Board Chair, Demchak and Mr. Tracy are attending the Drummond and

Woodsum training on the new law regarding these regional collaborations on September 8th.

B. Food Service:

Freezer down at Solon Elementary and we are working as quickly as possible to remedy this issue.

C. Facilities and Transportation Department:

Mr. Roy has held a couple of meetings with the drivers of RSU #74 and reports that we are off to a good start.

All routes are covered and we have a couple of substitute drivers ready to help. Overall, things seem to be

progressing positively in this department.

New Van:

We have hired a night custodian, Mr. Henry Esty for Carrabec Community School

(night custodian was moved to a HS vacancy). Ms. Agren has done a fantastic job

working with maintenance and custodians through the transition of leadership and

has really stepped-up. I am proud of the entire department for getting the schools

looking great for the start of the 2017-2018 school year.

D. Town of Solon:

Please see the correspondence from the Town of Solon regarding their reimbursement commitment to the

school district.

E. Energy Systems Group:

We held a meeting with the Energy Systems Group (ESG), who were one of the companies who were

responsible for the overhaul and renovations at the High School 2-3 years ago. Part of the original agreement

was for them to help monitor energy efficiencies for our district. Additionally, the original agreement was for a

15 year contract between RSU #74 and ESG for such services. Part of the understanding was to have the

company assure a level of savings for the district and issue annual reports to that effect. -Last year, Interim

Superintendent Beverage worked to dissolve the agreement, and the company has not agreed to that at this

time, however, they have agreed to giving me until spring to determine their usefulness, and possible

renegotiate terms, and or potentially terminate the contract at that time if that is our preference. -I will

continue to research and monitor this.

F. Second Round Bus Bids:

To be discussed as an action item at the school board meeting.

V. Academics and Instruction:


The Support Staff Collective Bargaining Agreement concludes on July 1, 2018. They have submitted their 180

day notice of intent to negotiate.

This Years Academic Initiatives:

Mr. Tracy will provide a presentation regarding this year’s academic initiatives. This year’s focus will be on

Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports (PBIS), Proficiency Based Education (PBE) and the teacher

evaluation system.

Subpages (1): Superintendent's Report