Carmel Clay School Board Meeting – April 22


BOARD MEMBERS’ REPORT:  Superintendent Search Continues

Despite having narrowed their search to three finalists, Board member Patricia Hackett announced they would continue the superintendent search.  “Through this process, the Board has met a number of talented and experienced professionals,” she announced. “We are grateful for the time they have spent with us.”

Hackett explained the Board would plan their next steps and report the progress.  She thanked the community “for their support and patience while the Board makes this very important decision for our schools.”


PUBLIC PARTICIPATION:  Petition to Increase Recess

Lisa Washburn requested the Board’s support for a petition to increase recess from the current 15 minutes.  She explained the website helped “educate and gauge public interest” with data and a petition that has earned over 200 signatures.

Four other citizens addressed the Board in support.  “As a licensed school counselor,” supporter Nicole Dietrich said, “I feel it’s critical to add at least 15 minutes more to the existing 15 minute recess.”


ACTION:  Agreement between County and Carmel Clay

An agreement between Hamilton County and Carmel Clay Schools will install an emergency generator at Carmel High School.  “Totally at the expense of the Hamilton County Emergency Management Authority,” explained Assistant Superintendent Roger McMichael.  Carmel High School is a Red Cross emergency shelter and distribution center in a declared emergency.


ACTION:  Nondiscrimination Policy Approved After Two Votes, Discussion

Board member Greg Phillips voted against the revision until fellow members could guarantee the new wording offered “protection to those whose gender identity differed from the traditional.”

President Layla Spanenberg confirmed legal counsel’s revised policy covered all protected classes.  “At Carmel Clay schools,” she stated, “we’re making it clear we don’t discriminate against anyone.”


SUPERINTENDENT  RECOMMENDS:  Redistrict Orchard Park Complexes

“Three complexes with 600 units total are developing within the Orchard Park district,” Superintendent Dr. Jeff Swensson explained,“but Orchard Park is full.”  He recommended these complexes be redistricted as neighborhoods to College Wood Elementary.

Swensson clarified this would only redistrict elementary students of these new developments and middle school students would attend Creekside.

Board member Patricia Hackett thanked Swensson for planning ahead.  Swensson pointed out 12 more complexes in the platting process within this district.  Considering this potential growth now could ease enrollment for upcoming school years.