Common Ground Board of Directors Minutes- May 2018

Board of Directors Meeting 5/21/18

Present: Bob Parker, Wendy Battles, Babz Rawls-Ivy, Claudia Merson, Joel Tolman, Jane Lee, Beth Klingher, Monique Frasier, Michael Doolittle, Melissa Spear, Kerry Lord, Frank Mitchell

Staff: Elena Augusewicz, Brian Springsteen, Liz Cox, Henry Chisholm, Betsy Sneath, Kimball Cartwright, Rebecca Holcombe

Public Participation: Aziz Mohammed, Tupac Shureem

Bob Called the Meeting to Order at 5:34

Tupac said that they met on Friday with Ms. Cox to talk about student board members. They have decided to wait to nominate and vote for student representatives until the Fall. They will use upcoming town hall meetings to share information on the positions for the beginning of next year.

Aziz said that they have not decided on how the voting process will work. They are hoping to raise awareness and get some nominees in mind by the end of the spring semester. Students will probably serve year long terms. They want there to be one sophomore and one junior representative.

Business requiring approval

March 23, 2018 Board Minutes. Mike moved to approve
Babz seconds

Executive Director’s Authority to Sign Contracts; The board minutes from last month incorrectly stated that the board would like to adopt a resolution allowing the ED to sign contracts up to $40,000.00. That number was supposed to be $50,000.00. Bob moved to correct this resolution
Kerry moved to approve,
Beth Seconds


Corporate Systems Consulting $6000.00 for Managed internal Broadband

New Haven Farms $14,624.40 for Rock to Rock Donation Disbursement

Massaro Farms $25,823.81 for Rock to Rock Donation Disbursement

Newfield Construction $50,000.00 for Building Construction

Claudia moved to approve, Michael seconds

Finance Committee

Jane said that budget process is going very smoothly this year. Melissa will be giving a more specific update. We are in solid shape and had a good discussion in the finance committee meeting.

Melissa presented the budget with the increased per-pupil funds that were approved.

Jane reminded the board that the budget doesn’t include depreciation which is significant.

Babz would like to know if we have an endowment plan or something similar to plan for the future. She feels its important to have these conversations and lay out the groundwork for long term stability.

Michael said that the finance committee has been discussing that and are trying to think of ways to put some money away going forward.

Kerry moves to approve the current 2018-2019 budget
Jane seconds

Organizational Updates

Liz said that we requested 48-50 seats from New Haven, they were totally filled by the lottery. There have recently been multiple schools in New Haven have been closed by the Board of Education. There may be kids from those school interested in coming here. We are also recruiting for a part time bio and full time Teaching Assistant. We are conducting interviews and phone screening. Our two teachers in the Relay Program are finishing up, Sekou has passed the Praxis.

Henry let the board know that Common Sense is coming up, and described it as a free extended happy hour with an ask at the end. He encourages the board to bring their friends.

Bob listed the 4 people who are potential board members; Ky Andersen, Eileen Crawford, Charlie Negaro and Errol Saunders. He also stated that Brian Springsteen is being nominated as the new teacher representative. Babz is no longer the parent liaison but is interested in staying on as a regular board member

Beth move to adopt all members, Michael seconds
Babz is abstained from the vote

Bob requested that all 4 new people will be invited to both Common Sense and to the June board meeting.

Beth suggested a mentor program pairing a new member with an existing member.

Wendy also wants to have a summer BBQ to keep in touch and get to know each other

Melissa wanted to stress that this is not an end point, we should continue to meet with potential new members. We’re still not as diverse as we want to be. We need younger people and people of color.

Liz is still trying to get a parent rep. and had one person in mind.

Bob said that Monique is interested in helping to develop a Critical Friends committee. Other names have also been suggested. This is a continuation of our CEIO work. Bob and Monique are open to suggestions about this.

Joel wanted to know what the timeline is for additional board members on-boarding.

Bob said that they will be introduced in June and then we can start talking about the length of board member terms in the fall.

Claudia said that in a training she went to that they suggested people serve a probationary one year before they adopt a multi-year term

Bob called the meeting at 6:26

The next board meeting is June 25, 2018 5:30-7:00


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