Modesto City Schools board will weigh naming Beyer field, school safety upgrades

12/08/2013 6:21 PM

12/08/2013 8:25 PM

Modesto City Schools will focus on the year ahead in a light agenda for the annual organizational meeting tonight.

Board President Nancy Cline will hand over her gavel and say goodbye at this meeting. Cline and appointed board member Stacie Morales did not run for re-election this year. They will be replaced by David Allen and Jordan Dickson for four- and two-year terms, respectively. Board members Rubén Villalobos, Sue Zwahlen and Cindy Marks were re-elected.

Marks, who ended her one-year stint as president of the California School Boards Association last week, is expected to take the lead on the Modesto board. Election of officers, setting the annual board calendar and filling designated positions on various administrative panels take up the bulk of the agenda.

In one of the few separate items up for discussion, the board will take up a proposal to name the Beyer High School varsity baseball field in honor of Paul Cornwell, who retired after 38 years teaching and coaching at the campus. Since retirement four years ago, Cornwell has served as assistant coach for the Beyer varsity baseball team. A final vote on the name would be at the Jan. 13 board meeting.

Board members will also be asked to approve a budget update showing the district expects to spend $23.5 million more than it takes in this year, but increasing revenues under the state’s new funding formula will gradually bring its operating fund back into the black in two years. The district expects to have more than enough reserves to carry it through, ending the 2013-14 year with a 10percent cushion even after subtracting all precautionary set-asides.

A number of security-related purchases will be voted on, part of a wide-ranging effort to improve campus safety that followed the massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Connecticut on Dec. 14, 2012. The board is expected to award a $187,229 low-bid contract to North American Video to replace 230 nonworking security cameras, nearly half of the district’s 500 devices in place across its schools and administrative buildings.

Another award of three related bids totaling $209,391 would replace 2,000 classroom door locks with units that can be secured from the inside in case of a lockdown. A $300,000 project to retrofit or replace other classroom locks for greater security will be considered to be sent out to bid.

The Modesto City Schools board will meet at 6 p.m. today in the district staff development center, 425 Locust St. See the agenda at this link.

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