May 20, 2024

All right, Fighting Cacti family. This is Daren Otten, your Superintendent/President with the report from the May 9th Board of Trustees meeting as normal.

We started with a closed session, specifically reviewing a couple of different items with no action that ultimately the board took coming out of that particular meeting.

Moving into the open session, we had a few operational things that we needed to review, specifically the public comment area and notification around intent to negotiate between the district and CSEA and CSEA and the district as we move forward with those and the board. Ultimately, later in the board meeting, approved those particular proposals and will be moving forward with that.

But really, where we got started was we got a chance to celebrate the retirements associated with Cathy Itnyre, Katrina Chlebik, and Ellen Baird. And it’s really something that I want to acknowledge that these three folks have spent an awful lot of time here at Copper Mountain College. They’ve got a legacy of supporting students and watching the institution grow and change from the very early beginnings between the three of them. They are going to be very much missed as we move into the future, but I know that they will also always stay in touch with all of us here at CMC.

Coming back from the retirement reception, we introduced several new employees, some of which were in new positions such as KeeKee Brown, but also some new folks like Veronica Alcantara, student support specialists, Olivia Lazarus program assistant, and Jeena Spears supporting Pearson VUE as a program assistant.

Finally, we also acknowledge Brian Harvey as a Star Award recipient, and this was an exciting time to acknowledge some of the work that Brian does that we all benefit from, that we often don’t see.

Moving into the general board meeting, the board spent some time talking a little bit about the updates around the institutional self-evaluation and the ongoing timeline, specifically that the initial teams have drafted several things that went to the writing team, and now it’s back to be reviewed and updated based on the first round of feedback. I know all of the standard teams, specifically standards one through four. They will be working to return the documents to the writing team by July 1st, so that we can continue our progress on the ICER. As we look at specifically many action items that the Board of Trustees took, I want to highlight one in particular, which is really this conversation about board policy 2015. There’s a significant change this year that we are moving forward with associated with an Ed code change.

So, historically, BP 2015 acknowledges what the student member of the board of trustees ultimately is allowed to do through privileges granted by the Board of trustees. So the Board of Trustees has the ability to determine whether or not the student trustee has the privilege to make and second motions the privilege to attend closed sessions other than closed sessions on personnel or collective bargaining matters, and the privilege to receive a monthly cash stipend at the same level that they receive, which is $240 per month.

Historically, our board has always supported strictly the privilege to receive the monthly cash stipend, which is what they did this time. The change, however, is that starting in June, our student trustee will have an advisory vote. And this is new based on education code change in the state of California. In the education code change now mandates that student trustees are allowed and afforded an opportunity to provide essentially counsel through this vote to the Board of trustees.

So historically, you’ve all seen the board president calls for a first a second discussion and subsequently a vote. And historically, we have only tracked because we are legally only required to track the votes cast by elected board members.

Starting in June, as I mentioned, the process will be slightly different. The board president will call for a first, a second, a discussion, a student advisory vote, and then the general board vote. Now an advisory vote is a non counted vote, but it is documented associated in the minutes. And the expectation is that if there is discussion on a specific item, the student trustee will have an opportunity to inform the board of specifically student facing concerns about potential action items.

So, this is really kind of a exciting time for both student trustees voices to be amplified across the state, but also to ensure that our trustees are always being reminded that students are why we’re here and why we do what we do.

So, if you have any other questions associated with that, feel free to reach out, because I know we’re going to be navigating that as we work through the next couple of months, but it will be something that I don’t want anybody be surprised about.

The Board of Trustees also took several action items, including on Board Policy 2110, Vacancies on the Board; BP 4025, Philosophy and Criteria for Associate Degree and General Education; BP 5052, Open Enrollment; BP 5055. Enrollment Priorities; BP 5410, Associated Students Elections; 5420, Associated Students Finance; 5570, Student Credit Card solicitations. And these are all things that I think it’s important to kind of keep in mind the policy level that our board is ultimately responsible for, that they acted to implement mostly with minimal changes from the existing policies, with the exception of Board Policy 4025, which is a new policy that was brought forward to us through the Academic Senate.

So, if you want information on any of these items or anything else, please take a look at Board Docs for the full agenda, all the attachments and those sort of things. Otherwise, I look forward to seeing you all in June. Well, we work to prep ourselves for the July board, self-study and self-evaluation associated with establishing the goals for them and for the superintendent president – me – as we look at next year.

Enjoy graduation and enjoy some summer.