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Board Notes: September 25, 2019 Business Meeting

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The Board of Education meeting of September 25 commenced with a superintendent’s report from Dr. Joseph Giani commending Bellport High School student-artist Courtney Gerard for having garnered a Long Island Scholar-Artist Award of Merit in the area of photography from the Long Island Arts Alliance.  

During the Trustee and Advisory Committee Reports, Trustee Chris Picini touted the Virtual Enterprise Program students, who were interviewed for their company positions this week. He said he was also impressed by the high school library’s makerspace room and the projects in which students have been engaged. President E. Anne Hayes noted that she was also impressed by a football program fundraiser she attended and said it was a great opportunity for students to develop leadership skills by assisting with the breakfast. President Hayes discussed her attendance at the New York State School Boards Association school board workshop. She reminded the trustees that the Board must “lead by example.” 

Assistant Superintendent for Finance and Management Services Dr. Sam Gergis delivered a report about the District’s Reserve Plan and Fund Balance. During his report, he gave the status of reserve plans and fund balances including the Employee Benefit Accrued Liability Reserve, Retirement Contribution Reserve, the Reserve for Teachers’ Retirement System Contributions (TRS), Property Loss and Liability, Unemployment Insurance Payment Reserve, Workers’ Compensation Reserve, 2016 Capital Reserve, Repair Reserve and Unassigned and Assigned Fund Balances. Dr. Gergis also gave recommendations on funding. Following this report, the Board approved a resolution to authorize a transfer in the maximum amount of $2,228,242 from the unreserved, unappropriated fund balance for the fiscal year ending June 30, 2019, to the 2016 Capital Reserve Fund for the purpose of funding capital reserve projects authorized by the voters for the 2019-2020 school year. The Board also approved resolutions to transfer $250,000 from the District’s surplus balance for the fiscal year ending June 30, 2019 to the Reserve for Teachers’ Retirement System Contributions for the purpose of funding the TRS. 

Dr. Gergis also delivered a presentation on cybersecurity, insurance coverage and ransomware protection. In addition to discussing how cybersecurity attacks happen, Dr. Gergis explained how employees can protect themselves from phishing emails, emails that look like they are sent from familiar sources which cause viruses that lead to cyberattacks. 

Dr. Giani and the Board accepted the appointment of Frank P. Long Intermediate School music teacher Katherine Romano and welcomed her to the school community.

During the Consent Agenda for Business, the Board announced the ratification of the Collective Bargaining Unit Agreement with the Bellport Teachers Association Affiliate through August 23, 2023, as well as a memorandum of agreement with the BTAA concerning participation in the District’s group health insurance plan.

Closing comments by the Board included a discussion about the type of conferences worth attending. The trustees agreed that they want the District to be involved with educational organizations, and that trustees should bring back information so that the Board can benefit from the conference, meeting and networking opportunities. 


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