December 14, 2020

Board Digest

December 14, 2020


Following each board of education meeting, the Director of Communications recaps the board meeting in the Board Digest. To view the full agenda, click here.

Learning Without Limits

Equity Council
Frank Henderson updated the board on the recent Community Conversation on race, equity, and moving forward together. He also talked about the formation of the district's equity council. 

The USD 345 Seaman School District Board of Education has a responsibility to ensure equitable and fair educational opportunities for all students by allocating resources fairly and equitably, providing diverse learning opportunities, and demonstrating a commitment to equity and fairness across the school district. Educational equity is defined as making decisions strategically based upon the principles of fairness, which includes providing a variety of educational resources, models, programs, and strategies according to student needs that may not be the same for every student or school with the intention of leading to equality of academic outcomes.

To join, follow the link below.

Community Conversation

Silver Lake Bank Presentation

SLB Check

Superintendent Remarks

Dr. Noble informed the board of reconvening the USD 345 R2R committee with added medical professionals from Shawnee County Health and KDHE to  committee membership. This group of teachers, parents, medical professionals, district leadership, and board of education members, meets via zoom every Friday. The standing agenda for these weekly meetings is to review and advise district leadership and the board of education on 1) community and district COVID metrics; 2) learning environments; and, 3) district operations; 4) county and state COVID regulations and updates. Below are some of the topics covered. 

Quarantine Update (14 to 10 days)
The CDC recently identified two acceptable alternatives to a 14 day quarantine: 1.) a person can end quarantine after 10 days without a test and no symptoms 2.) quarantine can end after seven days with a test and no symptoms. KDHE said counties may choose to go with the shortened quarantine period. SCHD notified schools that we can follow the shortened quarantine period from 14 to 10 days.

KSDE Recommendation for Elementary Schools to Stay Open Regardless of COVID Spread
Kansas-specific data follows a general national trend indicating children ages 0-10 years make up a smaller proportion of the overall cases. Evidence also suggests that children in this age group are less likely to transmit the virus if they are infected, although there is some evidence that the secondary infection rate from children may be higher among their close household contacts.

Given what is currently known about infection rates in young children and secondary infections caused by young children, KDHE and the Kansas COVID Workgroup for KIDS recommend modifying guidance to allow for elementary schools to remain in an In Person or Hybrid Learning Environment when county metrics recommend a Remote Only Learning Environment if school districts meet the criteria outlined in Navigating Change.

KSDE Exemption Hours
The State Board of Education approved allowing districts to seek a limited waiver on the amount of instruction time they must provide this school year. School districts are required to provide 1,116 hours of instruction during the school year. With the pandemic continuing to disrupt school operations, the board voted to allow districts, if they want, to request a waiver of up to 20 hours between Dec. 1, 2020 and April 30, 2021.

The Kansas State High School Activities Association Board of Directors voted to allow two parents or guardians per participant to attend high school activities starting Dec. 10. USD 345 will allow two parents or guardians per participant at SHS events starting Dec. 11.

Other topics include: Early Release Proposal, Mitigation Review, COVID Testing Pilot, Review County Data, Review USD 345 Data

President's Remarks

It’s been an incredibly challenging school year for everyone. We’re coming to the half-way part of the year and we’ve already been through so much as a school community and community at large. I’ve heard so many stories this year, of inspiration and heartbreak, stories from parents, teachers, and students. Each of you are doing remarkable things and some days I’m sure you just want to be told, you’re doing great, you’ve got this. That applies to everyone, regardless of your role or how many different hats you wear on any given day.

I’m very grateful for you all and your willingness to work through the countless issues that we face on a weekly basis and your willingness to be flexible and show compassion and grace for one another. The board fully recognizes the strain this is putting on everyone, trust me we feel it too, and are doing our best when we make decisions that impact so many people to minimize the negative consequences wherever we can.

Keeping an operation of this size going in a modified format is an undertaking like no other and requires all of us to do so much. We’re so close to getting back to normal, we’ve made it to the half-way point of the school year and I’m hopeful we can put all this behind us soon.

James Adams
James Adams
USD 345 Board President  

Board of Education Consent Agenda

The consent agenda contains items packaged into one agenda item. They are often routine and garner very little discussion. A full list of consent items can be found by visiting the BoardDocs website

Discussion Items 

  • R2R Update
  • Teaching and Learning Report
  • SMS & SHS Program Planning Guides
  • Special Services Report
  • Building and Grounds Report
  • Business and Finance Report
  • Secondary 1:1 Refresh Proposal
  • Rapid Antigen Testing: Diagnostic Testing Pilot

  • Action Items (approved)

    Other Action (approved)

    • Approve a $500 stipend for licensed staff (not to include administrators) and $250 stipend for classified staff in the month of December, based on full-time employment status as presented in executive session.
    • Enter into joint representation with Soniqwave in accordance with the joint representation engagement letter presented in executive session.

    Next 345 Board of Education Meeting

    The next regularly scheduled board meeting will take place on January 11. It is scheduled to start at 6:00 pm. The Seaman USD #345 Board of Education will plan to meet at Seaman High School, 4850 NW Rochester Rd, in the Band Room.

    Board of Education Agenda

    To review previous board of education agendas, click here.

    How Can I Watch a Previous Board of Education Meeting?

    The video from the meeting will be available by the Tuesday at noon following the meeting. The video can be viewed by clicking here.


    Seaman School District USD #345
    901 NW Lyman Rd | Topeka, KS 66608