The Museum School

Governing Board

Regular Meeting - Tuesday June 19th, 2018 @7:00 PM

Meeting Minutes

Attendance Summary

Name Status Arrival Time Departure Time
Leah Dobbs not present
Andy Huff present On Time At Adjournment
Clay Jones present On Time At Adjournment
Katie Cota present On Time At Adjournment
Jesse Lincoln present On Time At Adjournment
Katherine Kelbaugh present On Time At Adjournment
Katherine Moore present On Time At Adjournment
Rick Clark not present
Alan Locke present On Time At Adjournment
Andrea Jones present On Time At Adjournment
Josh Horne not present
Danielle Royden present On Time At Adjournment

Public Comment

Our Public Comment period is for members of the public to address the board. Each member of the public may sign up to comment at the meeting, and will be allotted three minutes. The board will listen, but may not directly respond to any comments. Please do not use specific student, teacher or administrator names in your comments as our meetings are open to the public and public record. As such, if your comment is about a private matter, please contact the board via email, or speak to the board chair privately.

Dr. Michael Erwin of the Dekalb School Board addressed the board.

Approval of Agenda

So that there is agreement between board members on the agenda, and the amount of time spent on the meeting, the board shall vote to approve an agenda for the meeting. To the best of its ability, it will follow that agenda, and allow for the chair to move the board through the agenda as specified.

Approve the agenda as amended. Chair added an item of discussion in finance section related to DCSD overpayment error.

By: Jesse Lincoln Seconded by: Andrea Jones

There was no notable discussion on the motion.

Approve Previous Meeting Minutes

Motion to approve prior month's meeting minutes

By: Jesse Lincoln Seconded by: Andrea Jones

No changes/discussion.

Welcome and Call to Order

The Meeting will be called to order by the Chair.

Mission: The mission of The Museum School of Avondale Estates is to inspire students, teachers and the community to collaborate to develop strong critical thinking, interpersonal and academic skills in our students, which will prepare them for real-world success.


Core Values: Responsibility, Respect, Cooperation, Sustainability, Creativity, Kindness

Meeting was called to order at 7:02pm.

Development Committee Update

Foundation Update

Emily Gallagher provided update to board on foundation efforts with parent campaign. Parent participation at 78%. One final email request for support will go out, potentially improving participation levels. The Foundation Board will be holding a transition meeting for outgoing and incoming Board members on July 28. 

Facilities Committee Update

Media Center Update

Media Center building permit is in hand; moving forward to RFP, perhaps next week. There will be a 30 day posting of the RFP then Facilities will recommend a proposer to Board for vote in August meeting. Construction anticipated around the first of September.

Andy Huff suggests holding a groundbreaking event.

Facilities grant opportunity from the Georgia DOE has been sent to TMS which is due next Monday. $100k potential specifically towards security measures. Facilities will ask to finish video surveillance work (did 60% of consultant-recommended system with previously available funds), teacher panic buttons, and alarm system improvements.

A.Huff noted reduction of kudzu, as continuing campus improvement resulting from 10 yr eradication plan the Board previous supported via vote. 

Finance Committee Update

May Monthly Financials

2018-19 Budget Discussion and Approval

A.Huff recapped overpayment to TMS by DeKalb Schools: funding error in overpayment of pass-through state health benefits. TMS Board and staff research determined the payment was not a payment erroneously left out of the original payment from DeKalb. TMS notified DeKalb with repeated requests for guidance. DeKalb then requested funds be returned in one lump sum. Finance Committee determined a preferred return would be to do so in this FY to avoid concerns and potential confusion around two years of budget and audit impacts. Cash position allows return in this FY and there will not be an  impact media center funds. DeKalb Board has been extremely appreciative.

Andy requested motion to issue $395,993 check to address error; A. Jones made a motion to issue a check, as requested, C. Jones 2nd , motion carries unanimously

K. Cota reviewed 2018-2019 school budget, starting with a few overarching points. The upcoming school year will included 588 students bringing TMS to full capacity by adding an 8th grade class. TMS will receive same per pupil amount from QBE as last FY but the total received has increased through the additional enrollment. Other factor increasing QBE contribution relates to additional special ed staffing and para pros. Revenue assumptions for the budget were highly conservative.

K. Cota then reviewed major budget categories—

Personnel: although there was only a single class increase, it requires 3 additional teachers because of staff time allocations. There will be a new position of Operations Manager to take HR tasks previously distributed across the principal, assistant principal and school business manager. Benefits are increasing 10% and employer contribution to teacher retirement increasing from 16.81% to 20.90%, both line items further increased because of the additional staff previously mentioned.  

Instruction costs: $500/class/grade for supplies and materials. Textbooks line item is perhaps confusing in its label, as TMS students do not use textbooks. The line item reflects subscriptions, reading kits, workbooks, etc. instructional items used in place of textbooks.

Assessments: increasing number of students taking assessments results in an increase in the assessment line item. Funds were also included to help with student prep for assessments.

Computers: this line item reflects intended purchase of new classroom equipment and replacing technology lab computers.

Services and Supplies: $10k revenue overage from student lunch payments; this overage amount then contributes to the nutrition coordinator salary.

Student Recruitment: this budget has been increased to support enhanced outreach; charter goal driving effort and committee requested in a previous board meeting.

Facilities: maintenance and repair areas covered as requested by Committee; floor cleaning significant expense and required budget amendment last year, so that was included at the beginning this year.

Total expenditures anticipated reflect 93% of assumed conservative QBE.

Finance committee held two public budget hearings, advertised as required with no attendees for either.  

K.Cota made motion to approve budget as presented; J. Lincoln 2nd ; motion carries

K. Cota then reviewed the monthly financial statement.

Motion to approve the May monthly financials as reported.

By: Katie Cota Seconded by: Clay Jones

There was no notable discussion on the motion.

Motion to approve the 2018-19 Budget.

By: Katie Cota Seconded by: Jesse Lincoln

There was no notable discussion on the motion.

Motion to issue check in amount of $395,993.00 to DeKalb County School district to correct funding error.

By: Andrea Jones Seconded by: Clay Jones

There was no notable discussion on the motion.

Governance Committee Update


2018-19 Officers Slate

2018-19 Board Members

2018-19 Foundation Board slate

2018-19 Advisory Council recommendations

Bylaws Update

J. Lincoln thanked Board members rolling off including Carla Smith, Andrea Avery, Nicky Rosenbluth, and Matt Spaulding, while noting that Danielle Royden is remaining on the Board.

Governance Committee recommends that the Board elect 3 new directors: Kelly Swinks (veterinarian; long serving on Personnel Committee), Ingrid Irby (employed at Southface Energy Institute; helps Facilities and Finance Comittees, plus served on Auction Committe), Frank Furman (category director for GA Pacific; been on Foundation Board for over 1 year).

J. Lincoln made motion to elect the new Board members as detailed, K. Cota 2nd , motion carries

Governance Committee recommends an officer slate for TMS Board: K. Cota returning as Treasurer; Chair position to be filled by C. Jones; J. Lincoln to serve as Vice Chair; and Katherine Moore to serve as Secretary.

J. Lincoln made motion to adopt the officer positions as recommended for the 2018-19 school year, Alan Locke 2nd. Motion carries.

Governance Committee recommends a slate to serve on the Foundation Board: Sid Basu, Nat Balmes, Tamar Robinson, Jen Linke, Esta Busby, Amy Crownover, and Cindy Eldridge.

J.Lincoln made a motion to adopt the Foundation Board member recommendations; C. Jones 2nd; motion carries.

Governance Committee recommends the following former Board members to serve on the Advisory Council: Carla Smith, Nicky Rosenbluth, Matt Spalding, and Andrea Avery.

J. Lincoln made a motion to appoint the former Board members as listed to the Advisory Council , C. Jones 2nd; motion carries.

J. Lincoln made a motion for Tamara Shipley to remain Chair of the Advisory Council, C. Jones 2nd , motion carries.

J. Lincoln reviewed updates to the bylaws. Some bylaws edits were voted on and adopted in a March 2017. These bylaw revisions included: 4.04 clarifying term limited language; 5.01 also clarified term limited officer positions; 6.01 noted that Board Chair appoints committee chairs. New bylaw edits, not related to the March 2017 edits, include: addition of a Diversity Committee as passed by a past Board vote and simply needing reflection in the bylaws. Addition of a Facilities Committee which has been in place for some time, but also not reflected in the bylaws. J. Lincoln stated the Board cannot vote on new bylaws at this meeting, as this was the first public reading of the changes and will need to be voted on at next month’s meeting.

Principal Kelbaugh shared with the Board books being donated to TMS library in honor of the Board members rolling off. 

Motion to elect new board members as presented by Governance Committee.

By: Jesse Lincoln Seconded by: Katie Cota

There was no notable discussion on the motion.

Motion to adopt officers slate for 18-19 school year (C Jones Chair, J Lincoln Vice Chair, K Moore Secretary, K Cota Treasurer)

By: Jesse Lincoln Seconded by: Andy Huff

There was no notable discussion on the motion.

Appoint former board members C Smith, N Rosenbluth, M Spaulding, A Avery to Advisory Council.

By: Jesse Lincoln Seconded by: Clay Jones

There was no notable discussion on the motion.

Appoint Tamara Shipley chair of advisory council

By: Jesse Lincoln Seconded by: Clay Jones

There was no notable discussion on the motion.

School Leader Report

The school leader reports on the status of the school.

It was noted that a number of students are leaving in 8th grade for DeKalb Arts and other schools, as TMS typically sees each year as parents decide to get their children familiar with their intended high school peers earlier than 9th grade. 

The after-school services RFP process went well, led by a parent-based task force which evaluated respondents. Task Force recommended continuation of services with Connect.

It was noted that this is an operational decision that does not require Board approval.

Principal Kelbaugh shared a letter from Lt. Governor Casey Cagle recognizing the recent TMS award. Principal Kelbaugh noted summer staff and administrative activities; summer professional staff learning already conducted included MAP training and use of MAP data; second summer institute will include a museum expo to learn more about existing and potential new museum relationships.

Board Chair Update

DeKalb County Governance Observation Report

New Committee and Board Process and Tool for Public Meetings

Board Chair provides closing remarks and updates.

April board observation with feedback from DeKalb indicated a few areas of desired improvement—posting summary and full meeting minutes more rapidly following meetings, including monthly financials and that all meetings should be posted with their agendas, including committee meetings.  

The Meeting was Adjourned

The meeting adjourned at approximately 4:37 pm

Motion to adjourn

By: Andy Huff Seconded by: Katie Cota

There was no notable discussion on the motion.