Friday, May 18, 2018

Board Recap - May

Unionville-Chadds Ford School District
May 18th, 2018

May 2018


This meeting of the Board was dominated by two main topics: approving the Proposed Final Budget for next year and reviewing a proposal to modify the high school schedule.  

Approved Proposed Final Budget

The Board approved the plan.  The plan is now posted on the district website for public review and comment with a final vote set for June 18th.

The spending plan had been largely agreed to at the last Board meeting and the overall tax rate (1.56%) is the lowest in over twenty years.  The specific issue for further discussion was the tax rate for Delaware County residents. Because the state-mandated tax calculation across counties leads to year-to-year fluctuations in tax rates, Delaware County residents will see an average 6.43% increase while Chester County residents will see only a .35% increase.

Although over time, tax rates across the counties balance out (the 18-year average tax increase for Delaware County is 3.78% and Chester County is 3.64%), the administration was asked to develop alternatives to mitigate the disparity in the current budget.

Members of the Board, working with the administration, evaluated the available alternatives.  In the end, while not unanimous, a majority of the Board judged that the consequences of these alternatives increased future risk while providing minimal relief, and the budget was approved as originally proposed.

Click here to review the presentation and to listen in on the discussion (in BoardDocs).


New High School Schedule for 2019-2020

A year-long investigation into new secondary schedules resulted in a recommendation to keep the current middle school schedule and to modify the high school schedule to include a one-hour “Lunch and Learn” period for the 2019-2020 school year with a rotating PM schedule in 2020-2021.

The committee evaluated many alternatives, conducted research, stakeholder surveys, and site visits - finding that there were areas for improvement.  The incorporation of a one-hour lunch and learn period could help address some of these concerns, while still maintaining our current instructional program and delivery. Additionally, students frequently miss the same periods of instruction for early dismissals or extra-curricular activities; this can be helped by rotating the PM periods in the future.  

Benefits of the one-hour lunch and learn include:

  • Increases opportunities for students/teachers to meet for extra help (office hours)

  • Supports District student wellness goals

  • Increases time for teacher collaboration

  • Increases time for a study hall or a break in the day for all students

  • Increases seat time for lunch

Next year (2018-2019), the administration will implement the necessary changes to systems and procedures to ensure a smooth implementation in (2019-2020).

Click here to review the presentation and video (in BoardDocs).


Also discussed this month:

  • Rte 82 Safety Project to move forward

  • Wellness Council Strategic Plan developed

  • School Safety Program - Say Something program set for Board action


Rte 82 Safety Project to move forward

Back in September, the East Marlborough TownshIp came to the Board with a plan to redesign the area in front of the UHS and CFPMS campus. The goal of the plan is to improve safety with additional blinking lights and new traffic patterns.

The Board previously approved the plan and this month Rick Hostetler reported that the federal grant to pay for the work has now also been approved.  The project will be moving forward and the district will be working closely with the township and other community partners.

Click here to review the original presentation for more details


Wellness Council Strategic Plan

This was the first school year for the Wellness Council, and much has been accomplished already.  The council was established by the Board to partner the district with parents and the community to research, identify, and implement best practices that promote and support student health and wellness.

This month, the council presented its long-term strategic plan to the Board.

Link to the video and presentation


Say Something Program (Sandy Hook Promise)

The Wellness Council presented their findings on a school safety program called Say Something.  The program teaches youth to recognize warning signs and signals, especially within social media, from individuals who may be a threat to themselves or others and then to Say Something to a trusted adult: parent, teacher, counselor, or clergy.  If they are unable or unwilling to do that, they will have the option to report their concerns anonymously on the anonymous reporting system. The proposal is set for Board action at the next Board meeting (May 21st).

LInk to video and presentation



We hope you find these recaps useful.  We encourage you to stay informed about the workings of your School Board.  Our online resources in BoardDocs allow you to virtually access the Boardroom through videos and electronic documents.  Your communications team is here to help -  we’re always happy to hear from you.


Your Communications Team

740 Unionville Rd, Unionville PA