Common Ground Board of Directors Meeting Minutes: Meeting Feb. 26, 2024

This Meeting will be held By Zoom 

February 26th  5:30pm

Zoom Recording


Present: Alexis Smith, Brian Kelahan, Liz Cox, Keen Andersson, Aubrey Bido, Clouds Mutale, Aubrey Bido, Monique Frasier, Terri Snell, Jen Burke, Jeff Carter, Shelly Hicks

Staff: Trevor Williams, Elena Augusewicz, Rebecca Holcombe, Deborah Greig, Joel Tolman, Audrey Nefores

Public: N/A



Alexis called the meeting to order at 5:34pm

There was no Public Comment

Business Requiring Approval (5:34pm)

Minutes of the January 29th Board Meeting 

Peter moved to approve the January minutes, Liz seconded the motion to approve the January minutes. The motion to approve the January Minutes with noted edits passed unanimously.

Liz- Mention of Liz in governance instead of School Committee

Ky- corrected her name

Invoices Needing Approval

Peter moved to approve all invoices as listed, Brian seconded the motion to approve the invoices. The invoices were approved unanimously. 

  • Environmental Engineering (replacement water furnace compressor) – $9,138.95
    • This is covered by insurance minus our $1,000 deductible
  • Thurston Foods – $7,514.15
  • Xerox Financial Services – $8,526.00
  • ABM Cleaning- New Contract as of 1/1/24 $7464.00. Approve for monthly payment until Dec. 31. 2024. This is a monthly increase of $287 ($3,444 over the 12 months of the contract). 

Executive Director Report (5:38pm) (Monica)

Monica presented the ED report linked above. Monica shared CG High School Mid-Year Data, it was also shared with the School Committee in detail. Cherry was out sick today but Monica recorded Board Member questions about the High School and will have them answered by Cherry in March. 

Audrey discussed the upcoming Board Member in-person visit on March 6th and 8th. Media Club, which is the new student wing of Development, will be helping out that day with interviews. They have started to do lots of interviews and event coverage on campus. 

Committee Reports (6:00pm)

Minutes for all Committee Meetings will be Posted on the Board of Directors Webpage by the end of each month

Audit Committee 

The Audit Committee will not meet again until November or December 2024 to review the FY 24 audit.

Finance and Development Committee Report (Jeff)

The Finance and Development committee met on February 22nd  to review  Budget vs. Actuals as of January 30  and Invoices for approval. The committee discussed cash flow concerns and development strategies including the possibility of a Board of Advisors for fundraising purposes. The committee discussed and reviewed an amendment to the Finance Policies and Procedures specific to federal grants. The Finance and Development Committee will next meet on Thursday, March 21st at 4pm.  For more info contact Jeff Carter.

Ky moved to approve the Amendment to Finance Policies: Policies and Procedures for Federal Grants, Brian seconded the Amendment. The motion to approve the amendment was approved unanimously

  • The Finance and Development Committee asks the Board to approve THIS Amendment to Finance Policies: Policies and Procedures for Federal Grants 

Minutes from the Finance Committee Meeting can be found HERE

Governance Committee Report (Shelly)

The Governance Committee met on February 20th and will share meeting updates at the full board meeting.  Please contact with any questions. 

Shelly stated that the purpose of the meeting was to develop the Executive Director assessment which is due by June 30th. They are also working with the other committees to assure accurate posting of minutes and keeping Monica in the loop as an ex-officio member. 

The next meeting is March 12th. 

Minutes from the Governance Committee Meeting can be found HERE

Personnel Committee Report (Monique)

The Personnel Committee met on February 6th and on February 20th and will share meeting updates at the full board meeting . Please contact with any questions. 

The Feb. 20th meeting was also about the evaluation tool for the Executive Director. Monique is working with a tech person to develop the rubrics and have them ready by March 12th. This group did review renewal site meeting findings, staff attendance, teacher certifications, staff grievances etc.  

School Committee Report Liz  

The School Committee met on February 21st with a curriculum subcommittee meeting on February 7th, 12th and 26th. and will share a synopsis of their meeting with the full board.  The next meeting date is March 20th with possible curriculum subcommittee meetings before that. For more information contact 

The results regarding Charter Renewal that will come from the State Board of Education will also be on their website. There was a question about renewal findings, the site visit team had vague questions about financial viability. They reviewed a lot of data which is already shared in the ED report. Monica shared an update on new state guidelines for teacher evaluation 

New Business (6:29)


Executive Session (6:30)

Peter moved to enter into executive session, Ky seconded the motion to enter into executive session. 

The Board returned from Executive Session at 6:32. No votes were taken in Executive Session

Adjourn (6:32)

Shelly moved to adjourn the meeting at 6:32 and Jeff seconded the motion. The motion passed unanimously and the meeting was adjourned. 

Next Meeting: March 25th (In Person)

Public Comment: 

In order to comply with Connecticut Open Meeting laws, any member of the public wishing to participate in the meeting must sign up on the Public Participation Sign-up Document. Sign-ups for Public Participation will open at 5 pm on the last business day before the meeting (Friday, February 23rd and will close at 5:00 pm on the day of the meeting (Monday, February 26th ) Public Participation is limited to 2 minutes per person up to 30 total minutes. Anyone wishing to make a statement to the board can also submit testimony in writing to  by 5:00 pm on the day of the meeting. All submitted documents will be included in the publicly shared meeting minutes.


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