March Board of Education Meeting Brief

Photo credits: UrbEd
Photo credits: UrbEd

Part of our mission at UrbEd is to bridge the gap between the public and the Board of Education. The best way to do that is to make what they do accessible. As Deputy Director of Policy, Data, and Research, I write internal briefs explaining what the Board will do before every action meeting. Those briefs are, then, turned into social media-friendly posts. To go a step further in making the Board’s work accessible, we’ll be publishing articles—like this one—detailing information about what the Board votes on every month.

Link to the full agenda of the Board: Click Here


This month, the Board of Education will consider the following action items:

  1. Accepting the City’s Department of Human Services’ 80% reimbursement for the cost of transporting students in foster care.

  2. Accepting a grant from the Pennsylvania Department of Education Bureau of Special Education to supplement the costs of learning support for teachers of autistic students.

  3. Accepting a grant from the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection to purchase electric buses.

  4. Approving a memorandum of understanding with the Philadelphia Youth Network to provide a Digital Career Exposure and Exploration program.

  5. Extending a grant agreement with The Fund for The School District of Philadelphia to support early literacy through training of pre-K teachers to implement “read-alouds” to students.

  6. Reviewing several Board policies, including their policies on the adoption of planned instruction, special education, screenings and evaluations for students with disabilities, property management, and school bus drivers.

  7. Starting a contract with InProcess Consulting, LLC to host and support Qlik environment, license fees, and maintenance. They would be compensated no more than $3,100,000.

  8. Approving personnel hires.

  9. Approving personnel terminations

  10. Approving recommended terminations of professional employees.

  11. Approving retirements and resignations.

  12. Starting a contract with Healthcare Impact Assoc LLC Health E(Fx) to provide support and reporting for recordkeeping and reporting requirements of the Affordable Care Act. They would be compensated $308,998.

  13. Starting a contract with Helbling & Associates for recruitment, selection, and hiring. They’d be compensated no more than $75,000.

  14. Amending a contract with Paul Nedeau for an expansion of their consultant services related to planning for school reopening issues, including COVID-19 testing. They’d be compensated an additional $20,000.

  15. Starting a contract with Sherpa Government Solutions for support in producing the annual budget, budget books, and to serve as a database and reporting tool for budget and expenditure reporting. They’d be compensated $338,000.

  16. Starting a contract with Donald Wilson Consulting Group to provide budget, expenditure, and Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system analysis and implementation support for the School District. They’d be compensated no more than $260,000.

  17. Starting contracts with Catapult Learning, LLC, CORA Services, Inc., Elwyn of Pennsylvania and Delaware, FACTS Education Solutions, LLC, and Learn It Systems, LLC to instruction, professional development, parental involvement and related services to non-public schools. The District would be given $35,000,000 to pay for all of their services.

  18. Authorizing the District to make payments to schools that educate students placed by the Philadelphia Departments of Human Services, Community Behavioral Health, and the Juvenile Justice System. These payments are required by law.

  19. Allotting the District $1,500,000 to further compensate dozens of attorneys hired by the District's General Counsel.

  20. Approving contracts with several construction companies for plumbing, mechanical, and electrical work. The District would be given $7,486,158 to compensate them for their services

  21. Approving contracts with a second set of construction companies for plumbing, mechanical, and electrical work. The District would be given $10,000,000 to compensate them for their services

  22. Approving contracts with several furniture companies to furnish Anne Frank Elementary School. The District would be given $1,500,000  to compensate them for their services.

  23. Starting a contract with School Specialty, Inc. for furniture and equipment for classroom modernization projects supporting the District's early literacy initiative.

  24. Amending a contract with Wayne Moving and Storage Company, Inc. for additional moving services. They’d be compensated an extra $750,000 for their services.

  25. Allocating the District an additional $572,147 to pay change orders for ongoing construction projects.

  26. Amending a contract with several maintenance companies for as-needed maintenance and repairs of HVAC systems in School District buildings. The District would be given an additional $15,000,000 to pay those maintenance companies.

  27. Amending contracts with several asbestos removal companies to further compensate them. The District would be allocated $3,000,000 to pay them all.

  28. Starting contracts with several school bus providers to purchase unleaded gasoline and electric school buses. The District would be allocated $3,500,000 to pay them all.

  29. Amending a contract with the Health Federation of Philadelphia to provide a care management coordinator for the school-based health center at Gideon. They’d be compensated an additional $170,000.

  30. Starting a contract with Advant-EDGE Solutions of Middle Atlantic, Inc to provide for the removal and disposal of medical waste in school buildings as a result of on-site rapid antigen testing for the COVID-19 virus. They’d be paid no more than $81,300.

  31. Starting memoranda of understanding with several mental health providers to provide students with access to mental health and substance abuse services through the Office of Addiction Services.

  32. Starting contracts with several telehealth providers for web-based teletherapy services. The District would be allocated $400,000 to pay them all.

  33. Starting a contract with Public Health Management Corporation to assist in conducting the District's Head Start Community Assessment as required by the federal Head Start Performance Standards. They’d be paid no more than $29,780.

  34. Starting a contract with Riddell/All American to provide cleaning, restoration, and repair of athletic equipment and uniforms. They’d be compensated no more than $150,000.

  35. Amending a memorandum of understanding with Explore Learning, LLC to extend the term for Explore Learning, LLC to provide virtual STEM learning resources, including digital licenses for the purchase of Mystery Science and Gizmos, as well as the creation of STEM mini-grants. They’d also be compensated an additional $9,000.

  36. Adopting academic calendars for years 2021-2022 and 2022-2023.

  37. Starting a contract with the Community College of Philadelphia for their services to students who attend Parkway Center City Middle College and will continue dual-enrollment programming. They’d be paid no more than $8,791,566.

  38. Adopting a lump sum statement, pursuant to the Philadelphia Home Rule Charter 12-303b. 

  39. (Intermediate Unit) Starting contracts with several vendors to provide educational supports for non-public schools, pursuant to Act 89. The District would be given $18,000,000 to pay them all. Those funds are from a state grant.

  40. (Intermediate Unit) Starting contracts with several vendors to help non-public schools cope with the impacts of COVID-19. The District would be given $50,000,000 to pay them all. Those funds are from a state grant.

    BOE Meeting Briefing 3_25 (2).png
    Photo credits: UrbEd

Board of Education’s Rules For Testimony:
(Particularly important parts are bolded, but I encourage everyone to read it in-full)

The public may share spoken comments with the Board by registering to address the Board at any regularly scheduled Action Meetings and Committee Meetings. The procedures for

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addressing the Board are as follows:

  1.  Individuals must register by submitting the speaker request form (for the meeting at which they wish to address the board) available on the Board’s website or by calling 215-400-5959 to register with Board staff. 

  2. Speaker registration will open at 5:00 p.m. on the Monday (or the first business day) of the week in which the meeting will be held.

  3. Individuals must register no later than 5:00 p.m. on the business day immediately preceding the meeting at which they would like to speak. 

  4. Individuals will be registered on a first come first served basis, subject to the following exceptions, with a limit of thirty (30) speakers per meeting. Each speaker will be given two (2) minutes to address the Board.

  5. In order to prioritize new voices, speakers who did not speak at the immediately prior public action meeting will be given the opportunity to address the Board before speakers who spoke at the Board’s last public action meeting. Accordingly, speakers who spoke at the prior meeting will speak after those who did not.

  6. No individual may register to speak more than once during a meeting. 

  7. All speakers are asked to remember that Board meetings are opportunities to engage in civil discourse. Individuals may be ruled out of order if: 

  1. They make any disparaging remarks of a personal nature regarding any individual, whether or not that person is present; in which case they will be directed to address their comments to the appropriate District administrator; or

  2. Use any vulgar, profane, or physically threatening language. 

  1. The presiding officer may:

  1. Interrupt or terminate a participant’s statement when the statement is too lengthy, personally directed, abusive, obscene, or irrelevant.

  2. Request any individual to leave the physical meeting or disconnect electronic access when that person does not observe reasonable decorum.

  3. Call a recess or adjourn to another time when the lack of public decorum interferes with the orderly conduct of the meeting.

  4. Suspend or alter any of the procedures related to addressing the Board. 

    BOE Meeting Briefing 3_25 (3).png
    Photo credits: UrbEd

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