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Hot Topics for the Regular Board of Trustees for 5/24/22

We want to help you better understand the upcoming issues the WCSD Board of Trustees will be discussing this week. Take a minute to review these agenda items so that you are prepared to submit a public comment or attend the meeting and make a public comment.


This agenda is packed with important items that could easily go unnoticed. Three of the biggest items on tomorrow's agenda are:


2.09 The State wants to gain control of determining all curriculum options for school districts in the state. This will severely limit district choice and parental input.


3.01 Presentation, Discussion and Public Hearing on the Fiscal Year 2022/23 Tentative

Budget For all district funds equaling at total of $537,415,559. (Why are our teachers so underpaid?!)


4.02 Presentation, discussion and possible action to approve the recommendations of the

Zoning Advisory Committee to modify or not modify enrollment boundaries which may

affect Brown E.S. Hunsberger E.S. and Lenz E.S. effective 2023/24 school year. (See maps and zoning recommendations below)


For more information on these and other items, continue reading.


Consent Agenda Items: (No Individual Voting or Discussion)


2.07 Board Policy 5600 - Student Wellness

Under POLICY: #3

At each grade level, health and wellness education shall teach appropriate, medically accurate information that builds on the knowledge and skills that were taught in previous grades.”

We wonder if that includes referring to girls and boys as: “Bodies with a vulva.” and “Bodies with a Penis.”


2.09 Board Policy 6160 - Instructional Materials: Selection, Adoption and Disposal

Possible Action to Provide Final Approval


Concerns: How will the pending Nevada Department of Education’s Textbook Adoption Process decision affect how we adopt instructional materials here in WCSD? How can we approve a final BP 6160 when the NDOE’s policy is still under review? Also, why has the wording of BP 6160 removed parents from the evaluation process? The proposed BP 6160 states parents, along with the community, can review instructional materials after they’ve been evaluated by the committee but removed parent participation in the evaluation or input in the choice of new instructional materials.


Short background: Approximately July, 2019 WCSD’s instructional materials adoption process changed from a District initiated process to a State led process. The significance of this is that WCSD does not have the ability to make the initial choices of material; instead, the NVDOE chooses the material and WCSD is limited to their choices. Before this process changed in 2019 it was as follows:

  1. The District sent out requests for Proposals to publishers (RFP)

  2. A textbook adoption committee consisting of District administrators, teachers, parent volunteers, community and business organizers as well as members from higher education evaluated each of the submissions

  3. The textbook evaluation process forms would be submitted to the State for approval.

The recent adoption of the Economics textbook was an example of how this Stateled process failed. Because the NDOE only had one textbook available on their approved list, WCSD had only one choice which is actually not a choice at all. The WCSD is governed by NRS purchasing: Local Government Chapter County School District's Purchasing Department as currently governed by Purchasing: Local Governments Chapter 332 and Public Works Chapter 338. It seems that, in regards to WCSD instructional materials adoption, NRS 332 has been replaced with NRS 389. NRS 389 stipulates that the NDOE will provide final approval of any materials the District presents for adoption with NO mention of the initial selection process. As stated above, prior to 2019 the initial selection process has always been WCSD’s responsibility and then the District’s instructional material choice was submitted to the NDOE for final approval. How is it that the current Nevada Revised Statute (NRS) 389 can be discarded/changed without public notice?


The Nevada Department of Education (NDOE) currently has had the textbook adoption process on hold since September, 1, 2021. According to the NDOE, the process is under review due to the need to streamline the instructional materials adoption process. The NDOE states that they will be rendering a decision soon. We are unsure how a NRS can be changed by the NDOE and bypass the legislative process.


This is a critical change to the District's control over what materials they are allowed to choose from. If the state only provides certain materials and community stakeholders disapprove, the District has no culpability for its contents. We believe this is massive overreach from the Nevada State Department of Education. Let local school districts make their own decisions for their communities!

2.10 Board Policy 6200 - Literacy

Literacy defines and describes the District’s expectations for instruction in literacy. This is the third and final step in the policy approval process. Notable deletions: Purpose section: The Board of Trustees believes that literacy, the ability to read, write, speak, listen, and to be lifelong readers, is fundamental to the success of all students. Policy section deletions: Literacy comprises a complex set of knowledge and skills that must be developed throughout the years of schooling. Also worth noting is Policy section, 2.e: “Provide ongoing professional learning opportunities focused on the Nevada Academic Content Standards to include the Nevada Integrated Technology Standards, consistent with the District’s comprehensive professional development plan, which is geared to prepare all teachers for the diversity of literacy abilities in a classroom.” *This is worth noting due to the specific gap in teacher’s knowledge and capacity around dyslexia. Despite requests from teachers, there is currently no specific dyslexia professional learning opportunities available to regular education teachers that would build this knowledge/capacity.


The heading, “Desired Outcomes” has been completely removed. This includes the deletion of subsection 1 & 2. 1) All students graduate from high school with the ability to use reading, writing, listening, and speaking to be contributing members of society who are self directed learners, effective communicators, collaborative workers, critical and independent thinkers, and therefore appreciate the value of literacy. 2) Improve the academic achievement of all students in all demographic groups, at all grade levels, and at all current performance levels.


Under DEFINITIONS: #2

“Culturally Responsive Practice” connects students cultures, languages, and life experiences with what they learn in school. These connections help students access rigorous curriculum and develop higher level academic skills.” How? How do these practices help students access rigorous curriculum and develop higher level academic skills? This definition is in multiple Board Policies with no explanation.


2.11 Board Policy 6300 - Mathematics

Mathematics defines and describes the District’s expectations for instruction in Mathematics. This is the third and final step in the policy approval process. A LOT of the original language has been removed in the Draft. The Purpose Section leaves only one sentence with two entire paragraphs removed. Notable is the removal of: “as well as engaging families and the communities” and “At minimum, each student shall be proficient in the mathematics outlined in the Nevada Academic Content Standards”. Also removed under the Policy Section: Washoe County School District promotes rigorous, high quality, effective, research based instruction in mathematics to ensure all pupils achieve academic success. 2.f does state, “The District shall offer support services and partnerships to include families as members of the educational community and in the educational decision-making process for students. Wondering why the initial Purpose Section removed the mention of engaging families and, instead places this one reference to families is buried further down in the document.


Just as in the above Literacy Draft, the Mathematics draft also removes the entire “Desired Outcomes” section that included: “All students will graduate from high school ready to pursue college or a highly skilled career having taken four years of mathematics”. And “ Improve the academic achievement of all students in all demographic groups, at all grade levels, and at all current academic performance levels. This has all been deleted in the draft.


We are seeing so many red flags go up. The district is trying to remove culpability in its dismal academic preparation for its students. It can no longer hide from the horrific math preparedness numbers, so it is going to take out the language that would require them to properly teach and prepare students.



2.13 Board Policy 9110 - Meeting Protocols

Under POLICY: #5:

Adding Agenda Items -

b. Agenda Items must be requested to the Board President, who has the discretion whether to add the agenda item to a future meeting.

d. The public shall not be allowed to place items on the agenda.

Our problem with this is how is the public informed on why something they have requested from their Trustee (Representative) to get put on the agenda is denied. How is this transparency? This gives the Board dodge any uncomfortable topic they do not want to have a discussion on.


2.15 Spending of $2.6 million in Special Education Instruction Staffing:

Funding from The Special Education Fund

  • Physical Therapist

  • Speech Pathologist

  • Occupational Therapist

  • Audiologist


2.16 $240,000 for hiring AlphaRoute for school busing optimization.

The funding for this comes from the savings from the General Fund and supplemented to the Transportation Departments Operating Fund. None of this money would be used to increase bus driver salaries. This is just to problem solve routes.

We find it incredible that this money is being spent when they cannot find money to hire new bus drivers or give raises to teachers. We are not sure why WCSD’s own transportation department cannot figure out the optimal routes. If a teacher cannot figure something out, they cannot hire a consultant to figure it out for them.


2.22 Approval of WCSD Distance Education Program Renewal Application

The District continues to have two options for distance education courses, grades K-12 North Star and Imagine Edgenuity through WCSD Middle and High Schools. Complete course list can be found in Attachment A (below) :

https://go.boarddocs.com/nv/washoe/Board.nsf/files/CECT6G75CB73/$file/Attachment%20B%20%E2%80%93%20List%20of%20Available%20Distance%20Education%20Courses.pdf



2.24 Appointment/Re-Appointment for the Zoning Advisory Committee

They are asking for automatic re-appointments of current members without discussing any new interested parties. Why not open it to the public to apply for the open spots?


2.25 Appointment/Re-Appointment for the Audit Committee

They are asking for automatic re-appointments of current members without discussion of any new interested parties. Why not open it to the public to apply for the open spots?



2.26 Appointment/Re-Appointment for the SHARE Advisory Committee

We believe that it is especially important that new parents get to have a chance to be on this committee. We are aware of some parents who have applied to be on this committee every year for the past 5 years. It is important that everyone gets a chance for their voice to be heard. Why not open it to the public to apply for the open spots?


2.27 Appointment/Re-Appointment to the School Naming Committee

They are asking for automatic re-appointments of current members without discussion of any new interested parties.


The Following Items will be posted on WCSD for a 13 day public review and comment:


2.29 Board Policy 6505 - Pathway to Early College Credit

Microsoft Word - 6505_Policy-Early_College_Credit-v2 BPC 05172022 (boarddocs.com)


2.30 Board Policy 6525 - Gifted and Talented Education

Attachment A_6525_Policy-Gifted_Ed-v2.pdf (boarddocs.com)


2.31 Board Policy 6600 - Course of Study

Microsoft Word - 6600_Policy-Course_of_Study-v3 BPC 051722 (boarddocs.com)


2.32 Board Policy 6605 - Academics: Curriculum and Content Standards

Attachment A_6605 Policy - Academics v2.pdf (boarddocs.com)


2.33 Board Policy 6700 - Charter Schools

Microsoft Word - 6700_Policy-Charter_Schools-v4 BPC 05172022 (boarddocs.com)


Budget Items:


3.01 Presentation, Discussion and Public Hearing on the Fiscal Year 2022/23 Tentative

Budget For all district funds equaling at total of $537,415,559. The following is a link to

the complete budget breakdown:


Attachment D - FY23 Tentative Budget Department of Taxation Budget Forms.pdf (boarddocs.com)



Items For Presentation:


4.01 The Union and WCSD Trying to Work on Compensation Adjustments for Support Staff

Discussion and Possible action to approve a memorandum of agreement between by

WCSD and the Washoe Education Support Professionals (WESP - which is the union) regarding the compensation adjustments to address critical labor shortage in Transportation,

Housekeeping, and Nutrition Services Departments. We have written on this support staff underpayment in WCSD recently.


NO ADDITIONAL INFORMATION WAS GIVEN


4.02 Final Zoning Change Recommendations for Lenz, Brown & Hunsberger E.S.

Presentation, discussion and possible action to approve the recommendations of the

Zoning Advisory Committee to modify or not modify enrollment boundaries which may

effect Brown E.S. Hunsberger E.S. and Lenz E.S. effective 2023/24 school year.

Lenz Elementary School is currently at 103% of capacity and is projected to be at 107% in 22/23 School year with the proposed rezoning the capacity will drop to 83%. Brown is projected to to also reach 107% capacity by 22/23 school year and with the proposed rezoning the capacity will drop to 82% in 23/24. With the proposed rezoning Hunsberger will go from 71% to 82% in 23/24 school year.


Please see the attached proposed rezoning maps with the Option #9 being proposed by the Zoning Advisory Committee: