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Board Meeting Summary, April 21, 2021

Note: Recordings and documents for agenda items can be accessed via BoardDocs by clicking on the corresponding agenda items.

Strategic Plan

The Canyons Board of Education and Administration have begun an extensive process to enhance and re-prioritize the District’s strategic vision and mission plan. To guide the work, the Board has hired the consulting firm Education Elements, which provided the Board with an overview of the planning process and timeline. The goal of the next several months is to gather information and review the strengths and weaknesses of the organization. The process also will include student-achievement data analysis. A major part of the effort will be to gather public input via focus groups and forums. Teams, including subject-matter experts from both within and outside the District, will be assigned to each subject area to build objectives around those subject areas. Education Elements founder and CEO attended the meeting via Zoom.  The Board also heard updates from three work groups — Innovation Work Group, Academic/Portrait of a Graduate Work Group, and Whole Child Working Group — that will contribute to parts of the District’s long-term plans.

Long Range Planning Report

A new home is being proposed for the Bridges program. A proposal would move the classes, now at Midvalley Elementary, to a $3.1 million, 9,800-square-foot unit on the campus of the under-construction Glacier Hills Elementary. The new unit would provide Bridges participants access to peers, but would be constructed separate from Glacier Hills classrooms and hallways. According to the proposal, the site is more centrally located in the District to provide better access for all patrons. The Board also heard a proposal to house the middle-school Youth Academy students in classrooms at Eastmont Middle. The Board asked the Administration to provide information to and gather input from School Community Councils of school communities that would be affected. The Long-Range Planning Committee recommends delaying discussions on boundary changes in the Midvale area. The committee, however, recommends discussions about the growth in Draper, a timeline for construction of a west Draper elementary, and moving the District’s alternative high school, Diamond Ridge, to the Bell View Elementary building once the school community moves in to the new Glacier Hills Elementary. Future discussion topics could include use and improvement of facilities, the pending move of the Utah State Prison, CTEC improvements, and school boundary reviews. 

Social-Emotional Learning Curriculum in High Schools

The Board of Education is considering an acclaimed social-emotional learning curriculum for use in CSD high schools. If approved, “School-Connect—Optimizing the High School Experience” would become part of CSD’s multi-pronged approach to wellness. The proposed curriculum is designed to improve teenage social, emotional, and academic skills, and strengthen relationships among students and between students and teachers. Research indicates that skills such as self-awareness, self-management, social awareness, relationship maintenance, and responsible decision-making are needed for success in school and beyond. Research clearly shows that students who feel welcome at school and have built and maintained relationships with peers and teachers are more likely to have strong attendance records and perform well academically. Students who feel unsafe, unwelcome or unknown often disengage both socially and academically. The proposed curriculum, which dovetails with “Second Step,” the social-emotional curriculum used in CSD elementary and middle schools, would fulfill state-required initiatives to prevent bullying and provide character education. The Board will consider adoption of the curriculum, for fall implementation, at the next meeting. 

Board Meeting Schedule

The Board of Education reviewed a proposed public-meeting schedule for the 2022-2023 school year. Once approved, the schedule will be posted so the public can plan to attend study sessions and business meetings. The Board will continue to consider the proposed schedule.

Student Advisory Council

Members of the Student Advisory Council, which is empaneled every year, were recognized for their year of service to the Board of Education. Three students from Canyons’ six high schools — Alta, Brighton, Corner Canyon, Diamond Ridge, Hillcrest and Jordan — were chosen to serve on the council, which is a direct link from the students to the District’s policy-makers.  This is the eighth year of CSD’s Student Advisory Council. The students on the 2020-2021 council are: 

  • Alta: Aiyanna Ford, Sadler Jones Jorja Smith Saskia Paepke-Chile
  • Brighton: Logan Oviatt, Celeste Dorantes, Israel Moeai, Esterline Wunderli
  • Corner Canyon:  Parker Pogue, Jake Orr, Danna Benitez, Lauren Carn
  • Diamond Ridge: Martha Lopez, Riley Gillespie
  • Hillcrest:  Max Lepore, Maddy Nava Ayers, Henry Salinas, Laura Bush
  • Jordan: Neema Delphine, Maile Afoa, Alberto Tapia, Elijah Martin

Policy Update

The Board of Education is considering updates on policies governing immunizations; student attendance; protection of athletes and students with head injuries; graduation diploma; and work-based learning. 

Consent Agenda

The Board of Education approved the Consent Agenda, including the minutes of the Board of Education on March 31, 2021; hire and termination reports; purchasing bids; March financial reporters; addendum to Union Middle Detention Basin Interlocal Agreement with Sandy City. 

USBA Report

Mont Millerberg, the Board’s representative on the Utah School Boards Association, presented information about the association. 

Curriculum Adoption

Instructional Supports Director Dr. Amber Roderick-Landward presented the curriculum proposed for online learning in fall 2021. The proposed curricula would be provided Arizona State University Prep Digital and Edmentum. The Board will continue to review the proposed curriculum. 

Patron Comments

Patron Jeff Wingad spoke about vaccines.   

Superintendent and Business Administrator Reports

Business Administrator Leon Wilcox announced that the federal government has announced that school meals can be provided for free in 2021-2022 school year. He also lauded the work of Risk Management Coordinator Kevin Ray, who is retiring this year. Ray has been with the District since its founding in 2009 and has been a major part of the District’s water and radon testing programs, as well as the creation of the Emergency Preparedness Committee and CSD’s Incident Command manual and plan. 

Board of Education Member Reports

Mrs. Holly Neibaur reported on attending school events and committees for strategic planning and long-range planning.

Mr. Steve Wrigley said he’s excited to start the strategic planning process and the start of work on new schools.

Ms. Amanda Oaks thanked the administrators at schools that are facilitating the programs that allow for activities to be held. 

Mrs. Amber Shill reported on meeting with Cottonwood Heights for information about city projects that affect the District. 

Mr. Mont Millerberg also thanked Ray for his hard work as the Risk Management Coordinator and Chair of the District’s Emergency Preparedness Committee. He noted the Thursday groundbreaking for the new Union Middle, funded by two voter-approved bonds.  He said it’s amazing to think about how much has been accomplished in CSD since its founding in 2009.

President Tingey thanked employees for their contributions to the success of the District, and the personal sacrifices that have been made to build up CSD.  She also remarked on Ray’s specific contributions to Canyons as the Risk Management Coordinator and Emergency Management Committee Chair.