Council Meeting: October 25, 2012

Our Playground and Community Natural Space Vision: a presentation by our Horizons Playground

Team, including, community members, City of Boulder, CU Environmental Design, Biohabitats, BVSD

and others!

presented by Cece, Peter’s class represented by Madison and Ruby, Nick Frank landscape architect with City

of Boulder, Jeff Dillon Parks and Planning Superintendent for City of Boulder, and Tori Derr CU Environmental

Design and Growing Up Boulder.

Peter’s class presented the design process they went through for the playground design. You can see the

website that shows the design process with the students at


In addition, there is a Making a DIfference Class that is working on designing and planning the space

from the whole Burke Park space. You can access daily updates to see what this class is up to at http://

The website is set up so that the information can be shared with the larger community. There is a space where

community members can even add observations and comments to the website as well.

Timeline and bigger picture from Cece:

November, sand & pebble natural river bed will happen, and existing structures will be replaced (purple slide

and climbers), plus basketball court and swings. GOCO grant work community meeting in early Nov. in hopes

of submitting grant in early March.

If/when there is additional funding, then we will have…

existing green playstructure would expand to more playstructures and be accessible

north of big gym would be memorial garden being designed and funded by alumni and donations

“We would love more adults that want to be involved,” including carpenters, natural playspace structures, other

involvement, clean-up. A sign-up sheet went around from Kim Poplawski – contact her if you’re interested. Also

can contact Cece. There will be a community build day in November coming up.

Q about garden-to-table? Don’t know now, but we’re hoping with city to have a community garden in Burke


6.25 Playground Q&A

What format will community meeting on Nov 7 take? In this room. We will bring student work up until that point.

Have 6-7 table groups working on different areas. Bring in a variety of people with expertise to have creative

working brainstorming meeting. Conversation with broader community to hear their voices about.

What is water level? We didn’t add any water (this year). It’s at a stable level now without adding water.

Council Procedures

Open Forum

● Jeanne MAD random acts of kindness mini vegan muffins mostly organic, made little cards at every

chair, got moved to this gym. cards for every parent to thank you for putting time into your day to come

to council and other nice greetings.

● Kateri – calendar survey for bvsd calendar, make sure to make voice heard, it closes on Oct 31.

Calendar meeting Tues & Wed maybe 7:00 at Fairview, check bvsd site to make sure of date and time.

IT’s a place to have your voice heard.

● Kateri – Nalani and Jordan G will be in CC Honk through Nov 11 at Platt MS.

● Peter – 4 5 students organizing student vote on Nov 6. Going into all homerooms to register voters right


● Diane – request. I bike with my son coming from E to W. IT’s a tricky spot where we cross in front of

driveway. THere was a near miss. I’m worried some kid will be hit. Parents PLEASE STOP at the white


● Debbie – could we consider a green bike lane here? Elizabeth – isn’t a stop sign coming? Kateri – there

isn’t even a crosswalk there. Rosemary – this was raised very forcefully at some construction meetings.

Diane – still trying to figure out the safest way to bike through there. Other parents have also seen near-
misses almost daily. What about NO parking even closer to there. Problem because drivers are looking

to the right and biker are from left? Concern over too many signs there to pay attention to. What about

a speed bump there?

● Debbie – All school dance tomorrow night 6:30-8:30. Thanks to all of the volunteers. We still need more

to help with clean up and set up. (John: Also, note that stillettos are not compatible with the gym floor.)

● Sally – Target can put their a target card on your debit card, with 5% off your bill and some amount goes

back to the school, and you don’t have to have a bill every month.

● John – working with Janice’s MAD class and the Navajo reservations. We will be doing a fund raiser to

help them known as World Run Day that you will be hearing about. You register on the website and run

any day you want to.

● Rosemary – Apologize for missing the last meeting. Daughter diagnosed with scoliosis and we were

getting her brace. If anyone wants info about scoliosis, we have a lot now. Also acknowledging the

amount of support that she has at school is wonderful. Thank you Horizons.

● Rosemary – instead of next council meeting we will have Making A DIfference Celebration. On same

night we will be having ribbon cutting celebration. It’s all on Nov 15. Unfortunately, we still have council

business that needs to get done before the end of the year, and will be announcing a special meeting.

● Kateri – craft fair is still looking for people to participate. Contact Joy. First friday of Dec after school.

● John – thank you to fundraising committee for great video for fundraising drive. IT’s thoughtful and fun,

etc. Thank you.

● John – portable, permit for demo is just submitted, so it’s at least 10 days. Cancel sunday deck tearing

out. We’ll let you know when to do that.

6.45 Discussion items

Debt Forgiveness

● (Debbie) Debt we owe for BEST grant. How we incurred it: 2006 when bond passed, they assessed

needs of school, ours was underfunded and under assessed. We devised a master plan, but we

couldn’t fund the whole thing, so we went for grant funding, so we applied for BEST for first time

in 2010. We used bond fund as matching funds. We didn’t get the grant that year. We weren’t

discouraged and felt this was still the best option for us so we tried again, but we didn’t have any

matching funds left. We weren’t really allowed to use that bond money as matching. We submitted a

long letter to say that we should still be able to use it as somewhat of a match. They actually wanted

60% match from our community. They actually did accept our waiver request, which was great. When

we went before them, we asked them to waive the rest of the requirements. We only had a little bit of

matching, about 8%. They went for it and said ok. But then… someone said, hey wait, I think they could

come up with something more, and they asked us to come up with more money (~400k) and we had

to talk to the district to get it and then we got the grant. And it’s because our health and safety needs

were really dire. Anyways, district decided they would advance us $441k, and we could pay them some

yearly amount back. We tried to show that community couldn’t afford more with the waiver request. We

are seeing now how much of a hardship this is on the community. We are working now to see if we can

get the district to forgive our debt. Main idea is the district owns the building. BEST money should have

been covered by the district as part of capital improvement.

● Also these are basic needs at our school.

● District people recently came to tour the new parts of our building and were impressed that we had

tackled 98% of our needs with a much smaller budget than they had allocated to us.

● We were one of the most cost effective projects per square foot.

● We also had to say that we would set aside 10-20k a year to look after the facility, and we don’t think

that any other school is having to do that

● Does the new wing belong to the district or Horizons? To the district, and we sub-lease it.

● Danny: what would be a compromise idea? Debbie: 1st option is debt forgiveness. 2nd option is debt

restructuring. Melinda: Let’s wait on the discussion for finance presentation.

● Lauren: Thanks, and feeling continually humbled by your efforts.

● Julie: thanks for reminder about the goals of the construction, and that it wasn’t just a fancy new


Capital Campaign Ideas

● Carin: asked to look into options to raise 500k. Talked with development people and other charter

schools, etc. Did exploring on other charter schools that have multiple campuses, and believes we

could go there if we choose to do it.

○ Option B Quiet Raise $500k

○ Private fundraising, need 10-20 donors, 25-50k total. over 8 years. our community is pretty

tapped. Every year we raise about 120-140k, and we’re asking for more this year and will keep

trying to, but we are tapped. This new plan will mean calling on alums, grandparents, etc. The

person at Summit says it can be done, and she was amazed too.

○ Option C – Savings Fund – raise up to $1 Million

○ Seize the momentum and energy of the campaign, plan for future funding needs in 5-10 years.

Keep the quiet raise as 60%, groom new parents for giving, approach alumni, grandparents,

graduating parents, recruit

○ develop a case statement – why would someone want to give that much money

○ Option D – Horizons Vision

○ Take a philanthropic perspective

○ What is our purpose and vision, what are the great issues? Endowment fund for perpetuity.

financial support from philanthropic individuals, foundations and organizations. Build a

community development team. Paid staff to help realize the vision and solicit philanthropic


○ We have an investment fund and live off of the interest

● Is next step: who we are, how to communicate that, elevator pitch? Mission, vision, purpose…Carin: just

reporting on what I found. Need to decide on next steps.

● Conversation on next steps: Carin will be contact point for that.

Faculty Update: Unified Plan – In lieu of Small group work to discuss goals, decided to share UIP work

from faculty

● Sally: for grades 3-5, math and reading scoring in 90th percentile

● Janice: add to that

● Lance: middle school math goal

○ focus on creating goals around writing

○ sub-contents that are low are mechanics and grammar and spelling

○ came up with wanting more PD around mechanics

○ have more meetings

○ share resources

○ share common philosophy k-8, consistency in implementing instruction

○ research and craft rubrics and skill assessment tools like the district to articulate skill sets

across the grade levels

○ same issues in writing in middle school

○ smooth to work together for same goals k-8

○ LA goals are same and working together

○ STEP UP training worked in past. color coded paragraphs came from that.

○ continue to focus on number sense

○ focus on computation

○ building concrete conceptual understanding of number

○ more consistent math support in study hall

● Beth: k-8 articulation for literacy to get it started in k

● John: observing faculty talk about instruction, where students are getting high scores and growth, and

see their commitment to see where can we still grow, is a great thing to be part of

○ climate goal is another thing we have to have

○ targeting: kids are telling us that the sense that we are not consistently enforcing rules

○ we need more clarity and consistency

○ have conversation this year to create common language for more consistency around behavior

and expectations

○ Could climate goal be our “dream”

● If you have more thoughts please email them to John

District and Council Budget Report, including approval of updated

Council Budget

● Melinda: (Council Budget)

● Ron: (District Budget)

○ budget on front and bullet points on back (follow links to document)

○ discussion followed bullet points

○ discussion from bullet points (follow link to document)

○ Reserves are below where we want to be.

○ Need to start having discussions about reality we may be living in with regard to state funding.

● John: even more thank you’s to Melinda and Ron for more than 20 hours of work behind these 2


Subcommittee Reports:

Bylaws Committee Update

Rosemary: meeting 7am Wed, anyone can come. Looking to clear up language in the by-laws. Lead teacher

language. Conflict of interest stuff. Trying to do it in the next 2.5 weeks to get to community so that we can

have special session of council to try to approve these documents. Hopefully by-laws will be the only thing on

the agenda at that meeting.


Kevin: BVSD listens, on website, share thoughts about district calendar. They are using it for guiding principles

to come up with 5 year plans. Differentiated instruction in bvsd. TAG program. Climate assessment techniques.

Using volunteers in the district will change. Kevin will be on budget review committee. Superintendent and 2

board members are at meetings and they do listen to the parents.



Celebration time!!! A standing O for Rosemary and Debbie!

Moving into new wing tomorrow.


Kathy: just started Moolah drive. You should have received info and video. In just 1.5 weeks have raised

$17.5k. Directory will have ads. If you know anyone who wants to advertise for $100. Remember that if we get

100% John and Cece will dye their hair green.


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