Closed captioning transcript for the Hillsborough County School Board Meeting from September 19, 2023 - 4:00 p.m.

>> HI. I'M NADIA COMBS, CHAIR OF THE   HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY SCHOOL BOARD. I WANT TO WELCOME YOU TO HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY PUBLIC SCHOOLS. WE SERVE MORE THAN 200,000 STUDENTS. THAT INCLUDES CHILDREN IN PRESCHOOL THROUGH ADULTS IN OUR WORKFORCE PROGRAM.  

>> I'M HENRY SHAKE WASHINGTON, THE BOARD VICE-CHAIR. OUR DISTRICT IS THE 7th LARGEST IN AMERICA. AND OUR TEAM IS MADE UP OF MORE THAN 24,000 PEOPLE WORKING AT NEARLY 250 SITES ACROSS THE COUNTY.  

>> OUR DISTRICT IS DIVERSE AND DEDICATED. OUR BOARD MEETINGS ARE HELD IN OUR BOARD AUDITORIUM ON SELECT TUESDAYS AT 4 P.M. THE BEST WAY TO SERVE OUR STUDENTS AND OUR COMMUNITY IS TO INVOLVE YOU, THE PUBLIC, IN WHAT WE DO.  

>> YOU ARE WELCOME TO E-MAIL OR MEET WITH ANY OF OUR BOARD MEMBERS AND FOLLOW OUR DISTRICT ON SOCIAL MEDIA. BOARD MEETINGS ARE COVERED LIVE BY HILLSBOROUGH SCHOOLS TV, ON SPECTRUM CABLE CHANNEL 635, AND FRONTIER CABLE CHANNEL 32.  

>> MEETINGS ARE ALSO STREAMED LIVE ON OUR WEBSITE AT HillsboroughSchools.org. CLOSED CAPTIONING IS PROVIDED ON ALL BROADCASTS AND PAST MEETINGS ARE AVAILABLE IN OUR ONLINE ARCHIVE.  

>> WE ARE INTERESTED IN WHAT THE PUBLIC HAS TO SAY. WE'LL INCLUDE TIME FOR AUDIENCE COMMENTS BEFORE WE ADDRESS OUR BUSINESS ITEMS. OUR AGENDA AND ANY SUPPORTING MATERIAL CAN BE VIEWED ONLINE IN ADVANCE. THEY ARE POSTED SEVEN DAYS BEFORE EACH MEETING ON OUR WEBSITE AT HillsboroughSchools.org.  

>> OUR VISION IS PREPARING STUDENTS FOR LIFE, AND THAT MEANS ALL STUDENTS, EVERY DAY. TODOS LOS ESTUDIANTES, TODOS LOS DIAS. THANK YOU FOR YOUR INTEREST IN EDUCATION. WITH YOUR HELP, WE'RE MAKING DECISIONS THAT SHAPE OUR COMMUNITY'S FUTURE. [ SOUNDING GAVEL ]  

>>Nadia Combs: THE BOARD MEETING OF SEPTEMBER 19, 2023, IS CALLED TO ORDER. MEMBER WASHINGTON WILL NOW LEAD US IN A MOMENT OF SILENCE FOLLOWED BY THE PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE.  

>>Henry "Shake" Washington: THANK YOU, MADAM CHAIR. PLEASE JOIN ME IN A MOMENT OF SILENCE. [MOMENT OF SILENCE] THANK YOU. PLEASE STAND FOR THE PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE. [PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE] YOU MAY BE SEATED.  

>>Nadia Combs: MEMBER WASHINGTON, WILL YOU PLEASE ACKNOWLEDGE OUR STUDENT ENTERTAINMENT?  

>>Henry "Shake" Washington: YES, MADAM CHAIR. ARE THEY COMING IN? WELL, THEY SHOULD BE APPROACHING IN ONE MINUTE. HERE THEY COME. OKAY. GOOD. ALL RIGHT. SO I WOULD LIKE TO THANK THE STEINBRENNER ORCHESTRA ALONG WITH PRINCIPAL MS. EWELL. SHE USED TO BE ONE OF THE BEST STUDENTS IN MY CLASS. I TAUGHT HER DRIVER'S ED. SHE WAS A GREAT DRIVER'S ED STUDENT AND MUSIC DIRECTOR ANDRE ZOLOWITZ. ALL RIGHT. GOOD. THESE WONDERFUL STUDENT ENTERTAINERS PRIOR TO THE START OF THE BOARD MEETING, AT THIS TIME, WOULD YOU PLEASE COME UP AND INTRODUCE YOURSELF TO THE AUDIENCE?  

>> FIRST OF ALL, I'D LIKE TO THANK THE BOARD SO MUCH FOR YOUR SUPPORT OF MUSIC EDUCATION OVER THE LAST FEW YEARS, AND I HOPE THAT CONTINUES. THANK YOU SO MUCH. ANDREA ZOROWITZ, DIRECTOR OF ORCHESTRA AT STEINBRENNER. VERY PROUD TO BE THERE. THESE ARE MY WONDERFUL KIDS.  

>> AIDEN. I'M IN 10th GRADE.  

>> COLIN, 12th GRADE.  

>> I'M IN 12th GRADE.  

>> CADEN, 12th GRADE.  

>> MORRIS, 11th GRADE.  

>> JAMES, 12th GRADE.  

>> ANDY, 10th GRADE.  

>> ELIJAH, 10th GRADE.  

>> EVAN, 10th GRADE.  

>> CONNOR, 12th GRADE.  

>> ELLA, 12th GRADE.  

>> ZOEY, 12th GRADE.  

>> ALEXANDER, 12th GRADE.  

>> CANAAN, 11th GRADE.  

>> PAYER, 12th GRADE.  

>> 9th GRADE.  

>> 12th GRADE.  

>> MADELEINE, 12th GRADE.  

>> OLIVIA, 9th GRADE.  

>> ESSA, 9th GRADE.  

>> MAYA, 12th GRADE.  

>>Henry "Shake" Washington: THANK YOU. THANK YOU SO MUCH. [ APPLAUSE ] PARENTS, IF WE WANT TO TAKE PICTURES, PLEASE COME UP CLOSER. THANK YOU SO MUCH. YOU DID A GREAT JOB ALSO. [ APPLAUSE ] THANK YOU ALL SO MUCH.  

>>Nadia Combs: YES, THANK YOU ALL. OUTSTANDING PERFORMANCE.  

>>Nadia Combs: THANK YOU. THAT WAS REALLY OUTSTANDING FOR THOSE OF YOU ABLE TO HEAR IT. WE HAVE NO WITHDRAWN ITEMS TODAY. I NEED A MOTION AND SECOND TO ADOPT THE AGENDA. I HAVE A MOTION BY MEMBER GRAY. I HAVE A SECOND BY MEMBER WASHINGTON. ANY DISCUSSION? PLEASE VOTE WHEN YOUR LIGHTS APPEAR. AND IT PASSES UNANIMOUSLY. LET THE RECORD REFLECT THAT ALL BOARD MEMBERS ARE PRESENT. WE HAVE ONE SET OF MINUTES TO BE APPROVED TODAY, AUGUST 15, 2023, SCHOOL BOARD WORKSHOP. I NEED A MOTION AND A SECOND TO APPROVE THE MINUTES. I HAVE A MOTION BY MEMBER VAUGHN. I HAVE A SECOND BY MEMBER WASHINGTON. ANY DISCUSSION? IF NOT, PLEASE VOTE WHEN YOUR LIGHTS APPEAR. AND IT PASSES UNANIMOUSLY. BOARD MEMBERS, I'D LIKE TO GO OVER THE FORMAT OF TODAY'S MEETING. AS A REMINDER, WE'RE A NONPARTISAN BOARD WHO BELIEVE ALL CHILDREN CAN BE EMPOWERED TO LEARN TO SUCCEED AND OUR DECISIONS WILL BE MADE WITH THAT UNDERSTANDING. TO PAVE THE WAY FOR EFFICIENT AND EFFECTIVE AGENDA STATEMENTS AND/OR QUESTIONS, BOARD MEMBERS WILL HAVE FIVE MINUTES TO SPEAK WITH 30 SECONDS FOR FINAL THOUGHTS. AFTERWARDS, THE SUPERINTENDENT CAN RESPOND. IF YOU HAVE FURTHER QUESTIONS, YOU'RE ASKED TO GET BACK IN THE QUEUE. MEMBER WASHINGTON WILL NOW GO OVER THE BOARD GUIDELINES.  

>>Henry "Shake" Washington: THANK YOU, MADAM CHAIR. AS WE BEGIN THE MEETING, LET ME REVIEW THE FORMAT OF OUR SCHOOL BOARD MEETINGS. PLEASE SILENCE ALL ELECTRONIC DEVICES. THERE ARE SPEAKERS IN THE ROOM BEHIND ME THAT ALLOW BOARD MEMBERS TO HEAR THE MEETING UPON STEPPING AWAY FROM THE DAIS. THIS MEETING CAN BE VIEWED WITH CLOSED CAPTIONING ON LIVE WEBCAST ON CABLE TV, ON VIDEO MONITORS HERE IN THE AUDITORIUM. IT ALSO CAN BE VIEWED WITH CLOSED CAPTIONING IN THE ONLINE VIDEO ARCHIVES.  

>>Nadia Combs: WE HAVE ONE ITEM SCHEDULED FOR TIME CERTAIN, 6:00 EMPLOYEE INPUT. WE WILL NOW MOVE TO PUBLIC COMMENT. THE BOARD WELCOMES COMMENTS FROM CITIZENS AND VALUES YOUR INPUT TO THE BOARD. IN ORDER TO PROVIDE THE MOST COMPREHENSIVE RESPONSE TO YOUR COMMENTS, OUR STAFF WILL FOLLOW UP WITH YOU AND WILL KEEP OUR BOARD INFORMED ABOUT THE RESPONSES. OUR SCHOOL BOARD RESPECTS THE PUBLIC RIGHT TO SPEAK TO THE BOARD AND WE APPRECIATE YOU TAKING THE TIME TO BE HERE. HOWEVER, IT IS REQUESTED WHEN YOU ADDRESS THE BOARD COMMENTS ARE NOT DIRECTED PERSONALLY AGAINST A BOARD MEMBER OR STAFF MEMBER, BUT RATHER DIRECTED AT THE ISSUES. ANY BEHAVIOR INTENDED TO INTERRUPT THE ORDERLY CONDUCT OF THIS MEETING WILL NOT BE ALLOWED. OUR CIVILITY POLICY IS IN PLACE. WHEN ADDRESSING THE BOARD, PLEASE STATE YOUR NAME AND SPEAK CLEARLY INTO THE MICROPHONE. THIS AFTERNOON, EACH SPEAKER WILL HAVE THREE MINUTES. REMINDER THAT YOUR THREE MINUTES START WHEN YOU BEGIN SPEAKING. WHEN THERE ARE 30 SECONDS LIFE, YOU'LL SEE A YELLOW LIGHT ON THE LECTERN, A RED LIGHT AND A CHIME WILL INDICATE WHEN THE TIME IS UP. I'LL CALL UP THE FIRST FIVE SPEAKERS, IF THEY CAN PLEASE LINE UP.  

>> GOOD EVENING. ANT AVILA, COMMUNITY ORGANIZER WITH EQUALITY FLORIDA. AND I AM SO PLEASED TO BE HERE TONIGHT TO, FIRST OF ALL, THANK THE DISTRICT STAFF AND THE BOARD FOR RELEASING THE LGBTQ GUIDELINES FOR TEACHERS AND ADMINISTRATION TO PROPERLY SUPPORT AND PROTECT EVERY STUDENT AND THE ABILITY FOR EVERY FAMILY TO REQUEST PRONOUNS AND PROPER MESSAGE FOR THAT. I ALSO WANT TO THANK THE BOARD FOR MAKING A COMMITMENT NOT TO UTILIZE THE CLEARLY PARTISAN MATERIALS, PRAGER U IN CLASSROOMS AND TO HIGHLIGHT THE GOOD DECISION MADE BY PLANT HIGH SCHOOL ON NOT BANNING BOOKS BASED ON HATE. WE ASK AND CONTINUE TO ASK THAT THE BOARD PROVIDE A CLEAR AND THOROUGH, TRANSPARENT PROCESS FOR REVIEW OF ANY MATERIALS AND THAT BOOK BANNINGS ARE NOT ALLOWED TO HAPPEN IN HILLSBOROUGH BASED ON HATE. WE ALSO ASK THE BOARD TO ENSURE THAT THE RIGHT OF COLLECTIVE BARGAINING IS HAD FOR OUR TEACHERS HERE IN IN HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY AND THAT THERE IS PLENTY OF TIME FOR THOSE TEACHERS TO RECRUIT MEMBERSHIP. WE ALSO ASK THE BOARD TO SEND A COLLECTIVE SIGN-ON LETTER AS A BOARD TO THE FLORIDA DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION TO REMOVE THE ERRONEOUS AND RACIST LANGUAGE THAT IS NOW A PART OF THOSE SOCIAL STUDIES CURRICULA. THAT IS ALL I HAVE. THANK YOU.  

>>Nadia Combs: THANK YOU. NEXT SPEAKER, PLEASE.  

>> HI. MY NAME IS MATTHEW JOHNSON. I'M THE FATHER OF TWO STUDENTS IN THE DISTRICT AND THE HUSBAND OF A TEACHER ALSO IN THE DISTRICT. I'M HERE FIRST TO JUST QUICKLY COSIGN THE THING ANT SAID BUT PRIMARILY TALK ABOUT MY SON. HE IS THE MOST ARTISTIC ONE OF, IF NOT THE SMARTEST AND ABOVE ALL THE KINDEST KID IN HIS CLASS. I SAY THAT NOT JUST TO BRAG ABOUT HIM, BUT I AM, BUT REALLY JUST TO MAKE THE POINT THAT HE'S THE TYPE OF KID THAT SHOULD MAKE IT REALLY EASY TO BE A TEACHER IN THIS DISTRICT. BUT HE ALSO HAPPENS TO BE TRANSGENDERED. SO THIS SCHOOL YEAR KIND OF BEGAN WITH SOME FEAR THAT HIS TEACHERS WERE GOING TO HAVE TO CHOOSE BETWEEN THEIR JOBS AND TREATING HIM WITH RESPECT. I'M JUST HERE TODAY TO ASK THAT YOU CONTINUE TO LOOK FOR OPPORTUNITIES TO PROTECT OUR TRANSCHILDREN AND THEIR TEACHERS. THANK YOU.  

>>Nadia Combs: THANK YOU. NEXT SPEAKER, PLEASE.  

>> GOOD AFTERNOON. THANK YOU FOR THE OPPORTUNITY TO SPEAK TODAY. I'D ALSO LIKE TO THANK THE BOARD FOR THEIR GUIDANCE FOR TEACHERS AND THE ADMINISTRATION ON LGBTQ STUDENTS AND THEIR SUPPORT. EVERY STUDENT SHOULD HAVE THE FREEDOM TO BE THEMSELVES AT SCHOOL, AND THAT EXTENDS TO THE LIBRARIES. THE LIBRARIES SHOULD REFLECT AND RESPECT THE DIVERSE STUDENT POPULATION THAT THIS SCHOOL SYSTEM SERVES. SO I JUST WANTED TO REMIND YOU FOLKS, IF YOU HAVEN'T SEEN IT, THAT I KNOW YOU HAVEN'T GOTTEN REAL GUIDANCE FROM THE STATE YET ON LIBRARIES, BUT THE STATE HAS REPEATEDLY SAID THAT DON'T SAY GAY DOES NOT APPLY TO THE LIBRARIES IN THE SCHOOL SYSTEM. JUST LAST MONTH OUR ATTORNEY GENERAL, ASHLEY MOODY, STATED IN A BRIEF ASKING TO DISMISS A LAWSUIT, THAT THE DON'T SAY GAY BILL DOES NOT APPLY TO LIBRARIES. IT'S COMPLETELY DIFFERENT TO HAVE A SCHOOL LIBRARY THAN IT IS TO HAVE INSTRUCTIONAL CURRICULUM. SHE ALSO SAID IN A PREVIOUS LAWSUIT THAT THE REQUIREMENTS OF THE DON'T SAY GAY BILL DO NOT MEAN THAT LIBRARIES HAVE TO REMOVE ALL LGBTQ CONTENT. IT'S IMPORTANT TO KNOW THAT JUST BECAUSE A BOOK HAS GAY CHARACTERISTICS, GAY COUPLES, GAY MARRIAGES, DOES NOT MEAN THAT THE CONTENT IS SEXUALIZED ANY MORE THAN HAVING STRAIGHT COUPLES OR STRAIGHT MARRIAGES AUTOMATICALLY MAKES A BOOK SEXUALIZED. I'M ASKING TO YOU PLEASE REMEMBER BECAUSE THERE WILL BE A LOT OF BOOK CHALLENGES THIS YEAR THAT THE LIBRARIES ARE NOT UNDER GUIDANCE THAT THE STATE HAS PROVIDED ON CURRICULUM. HOWEVER UNFORTUNATE THAT GUIDANCE IS IT DOES NOT APPLY TO THE LIBRARIES. PLEASE KEEP THE LIBRARIES AS A PLACE THAT REFLECT AND RESPECT ALL OUR STUDENTS. THANK YOU VERY MUCH.  

>>Nadia Combs: THANK YOU. IF I COULD HAVE SPEAKERS 6 THROUGH 10 TO PLEASE COME UP, AND THEN OUR NEXT SPEAKER.  

>> GOOD AFTERNOON, HONORABLE SCHOOL BOARD MEMBERS, SUPERINTENDENT VAN AYRES AND STAFF. A PUBLIC SCHOOL EMPLOYEE OF 37 YEARS. YES, MY DAD DEDICATED LITERALLY HALF OF HIS LIFE TO HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY PUBLIC SCHOOL SYSTEM. I SPEAK TO YOU TODAY ON BEHALF OF MY FAMILY, FRIENDS, MY DAD'S FORMER COLLEAGUES AS WELL AS COMMUNITY MEMBERS, MANY WHO ARE PRESENT TODAY, TO SEEK THIS BOARD'S CONSIDERATION IN NAMING THE NEW PRE-K TO 8 MAGNET SCHOOL OPENING IN SOUTH TAMPA IN DISTRICT 2 AFTER MY FATHER, KEN ADAM. EDUCATION WAS HIS LIFE. HE LOVED AND IT SHOWED. LOOK AT HIS RESUMÉ OF PROGRAMS AND INCENTIVES THAT HE DEVELOPED OVER THE YEARS. HE WANTED STUDENTS TO REACH THEIR FULL POTENTIAL. INCREDIBLE HARD WORKER, DISCIPLINED, ETHICAL, PASSIONATE, FAIR, AND EXTRAORDINARY LEADER. MANY OF HIS MENTEED WENT ON TO BECOME DISTRICT LEVEL ADMINISTRATORS, PRINCIPALS AND EVEN FLORIDA TEACHER OF THE YEAR, ALTHOUGH HE WOULD NEVER WANT TO TAKE CREDIT FOR ANY OF THAT. I WILL NEVER KNOW THE DEPTH OF THE STUDENTS, THE TEACHERS AND THE STAFF THAT HE ENCOURAGED AND INSPIRED DURING HIS TENURE. I STILL CONTINUE TO MEET PEOPLE HE TOUCH. LIKE I MET SUE BURKETT LAST YEAR. I DIDN'T KNOW HE HAD THAT CONNECTION. BOTH MY SISTER AND I HAD THE PRIVILEGE OF ATTENDING SCHOOL UNDER HIS PRINCIPALSHIP. HE WAS MY PRINCIPAL AT ADAMS AND MY SISTER'S AT GAITHER. MAYBE WE WEREN'T SURE THAT WAS A PRIVILEGE AT THE TIME BECAUSE WE WERE TEENAGERS BUT IT WAS VERY EVIDENT THAT HE VALUED EVERY MEMBER OF HIS STAFF, FROM CUSTODIANS TO TEACHERS, TO ADMINISTRATION, TO CAFETERIA WORKERS, THE BUS DRIVERS, HE VALUED EVERYONE'S ROLE AND THOUGHT THEY WERE ALL EQUALLY IMPORTANT IN ESTABLISHING AND RUNNING AN EFFECTIVE SCHOOL. MY DAD'S LEGACY DID NOT END WHEN HE RETIRED FROM HIS FINAL APPOINTMENT AS AREA 7 DIRECTOR. INSTEAD LIVES ON IN FORMER STUDENTS, MENTEES, STAFF, FACULTY, AS WELL AS THE COMMUNITY MEMBERS WHERE HE LIVED AND WORKED. I WILL NEVER KNOW THE FULL IMPACT HE HAD ON OTHERS' LIVES, YET AS CURRENT HCPS EMPLOYEE, I CONTINUALLY MEET OTHERS WHOSE LIVES WERE TOUCHED BY MY FATHER. MY SISTER ALLISON AND I BOTH NOW IN OUR 19th YEAR IN EDUCATION STRIVE TO CARRY ON DAD'S LEGACY AND PASSION FOR EDUCATION. MY MOM LINDA WAS ALWAYS BY MY DAD'S SIDE, WHETHER IT WAS AT A FOOTBALL GAME OR ACADEMIC EVENT OR A CONCERT, INCLUDING MADISON, WHICH IS DOWN THE STREET FROM THE NEW PREK-8 SCHOOL BUT SHE WAS ALWAYS THERE WITH THEM, SERVING TEACHERS DINNER. AT ANY RATE, PLEASE STRONGLY CONSIDER THIS NEW SCHOOL TO BE NAMED AFTER MY FATHER. LET HIS LEGACY CONTINUE AND NAME BRING HONOR TO YET ANOTHER GENERATION OF STUDENTS AND STAFF, JUST AS DAD WAS A DEVOTED FAMILY MAN, LET THE ADAM FAMILY WOULD BE HONORED TO BE PART OF THE NEW MAGNET SCHOOL FAMILY, DEVOTING OUR TIME AND CONTINUED SUPPORT. THANK YOU FOR YOUR ATTENTION.  

>>Nadia Combs: THANK YOU. NEXT SPEAKER, PLEASE.  

>> GOOD AFTERNOON, SCHOOL BOARD MEMBERS. SUPERINTENDENT AYRES AND STAFF. MY NAME IS RENEE CARTIER, TEACHER AND COUNSELOR FOR 42 YEARS, FORMERLY RETIRED FROM THE DISTRICT IN 2016. I HAD THE PRIVILEGE TO WORK UNDER KEN AIDEM WHILE THE ADMINISTRATOR AS HIS COUNSELOR. TODAY, I HAVE THE HONOR TO READ TO YOU A LETTER OF SUPPORT FOR THE NAMING OF THE NEW PREK-8 SCHOOL FROM ONE OF MR. AIDEM'S FORMER STUDENTS, SERENA NELSON, WHO VERY MUCH WANTED TO BE HERE THIS EVENING. SERENA, WHO ATTENDED MADISON JUNIOR HIGH FROM 1977 TO 1979 DURING KEN'S TENURE WRITES:  I GREW UP IN SOUTH TAMPA AREA AND ATTENDED HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY PUBLIC SCHOOLS FROM FIRST GRADE UNTIL GRADUATION FROM PLANT HIGH SCHOOL IN 1982. I HAVE LIVED ON BAY VILLA AVENUE RIGHT DOWN THE STREET FROM MADISON JUNIOR HIGH AND WHERE THE NEW PREK-8 MAGNET SCHOOL IS BEING BUILT. WHILE ATTENDING MADISON, I WAS KEN AIDEM'S STUDENT ASSISTANT. MY YEARS AT MADISON CHANGED MY LIFE. I WAS LIVING IN A SINGLE-PARENT HOME, THE YOUNGEST OF FOUR AND DEALING WITH A DIAGNOSIS OF CEREBRAL PALSY. AS A YOUNG STUDENT -- MAKES ME CRY -- AS A YOUNG STUDENT, DEAN AIDEM AND HIS WIFE LINDA TOOK AN INTEREST IN ME AND MADE AN IMPACT ON MY LIFE GIVING ME ENCOURAGEMENT AND CONFIDENCE THAT I WAS LACKING. KEN AIDEM, ALONG WITH HIS FAMILY, BECAME A LIFELONG MENTOR AND FRIEND. THERE ISN'T ANYONE THAT KNOWS ME THAT HAS NOT HEARD OF KEN AIDEM. AND HIS INFLUENCE ON MY LIFE. HIS INFLUENCE ALSO MOVED ME IN THE DIRECTION OF GETTING A TEACHING DEGREE. I STILL LIVE IN THE AREA OF SOUTH TAMPA. I EVEN ATTENDED ELEMENTARY SCHOOL AT THE FORMER MANHATTAN ELEMENTARY STARTING IN FIRST GRADE UNTIL GOING ON TO LEE 6th GRADE CENTER. IT WOULD BE SUCH AN HONOR FOR THE NEW PRE-K 8 MAGNET SCHOOL THAT NOW SITS ON THE PROPERTY WHERE THE ORIGINAL MANHATTAN ELEMENTARY WAS LOCATED TO BE NAMED AFTER KEN AIDEM. A MAN THAT SPENT HIS LIFE MAKING A DIFFERENCE IN STUDENTS' LIVES AS WELL AS THE FACULTY THAT SERVED UNDER HIS AMAZING LEADERSHIP. I WOULD LOVE TO BE ABLE TO DRIVE BY THIS SCHOOL AND SEE HIS NAME, KEN AIDEM, OVER THE DOOR. THANK YOU, SERENA NELSON. AND THANK YOU.  

>>Nadia Combs: THANK YOU. NEXT SPEAKER, PLEASE.  

>> GOOD EVENING, MADAM CHAIR, SCHOOL BOARD MEMBERS, SUPERINTENDENT AYRES. MY NAME IS GEORGE GAFFNEY. I'M HERE TONIGHT TO SPEAK ON BEHALF OF MR. AIDEM AND WOULD LIKE YOU TO SINCERELY CONSIDER NAMING THE NEW K-8 AFTER MR. KEN AIDEM. I WILL TELL YOU, I MET MR. AIDEM ABOUT A MONTH BEFORE HE BECAME PRINCIPAL ADAMS JUNIOR HIGH SCHOOL. AND DIDN'T TAKE ME LONG TO FIND OUT WHAT KIND OF PERSON HE WAS. WHEN YOU PUT THE NAME ON THE SCHOOL, WHAT YOU EXPECT TO SEE IS SOMETHING THAT REPRESENTS INTEGRITY, CHARACTER, A OF ALTHOUGH OF CHILDREN -- A LOVE OF CHILDREN AND COMMITMENT. WHEN YOU SEE THAT ON THE FRONT OF THE SCHOOL, MR. KEN AIDEM, THAT WILL MEAN A GREAT DEAL TO THE COMMUNITY. IT WILL BE A GREAT STEPPING-STONE FOR THAT NEW PRINCIPAL THAT YOU APPOINT TO LEARN WHO HE IS AND BUILD ON THE COMMITMENT AND CHARACTER AND TRAITS OF MR. KEN AIDEM. I PROMISE YOU, YOU WILL NOT MAKE A MISTAKE BY DOING THIS. THERE'S NOT MANY PEOPLE THAT WOULD COME DOWN HERE. I WORKED FOR A LOT OF GREAT ADMINISTRATORS. I HAD AN OPPORTUNITY TO WORK WITH, WORK FOR, WORK UNDER MANY, MANY ADMINISTRATORS IN THIS COUNTY, AND I CAN'T TELL YOU, THERE'S NONE BETTER THAN MR. AIDEM WAS. I FEEL VERY PROUD TO HAVE BEEN A PART OF HIS LIFE. I APPRECIATE YOUR SINCERE THOUGHTFULNESS IN CONSIDERING HIM. IF I COULD JUST HAVE ONE MORE SECOND, I WANT TO COMPLIMENT THE SCHOOL BOARD. I WAS DRIVING HERE THIS EVENING AND I THOUGHT THE NUMBER OF YEARS MY WIFE, MYSELF, MY MOTHER, MY KIDS, MY BROTHERS AND SISTERS HAVE BEEN INVOLVED IN THE WALLS OF THE HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY SCHOOL DISTRICT, I ADDED THEM UP, IT'S ABOUT 200 YEARS. I THOUGHT, YOU KNOW, I'VE NEVER SEEN AS MUCH EXCITEMENT AND A BOOST IN MORALE AS I'VE SEEN SINCE YOU APPOINTED MR. AYRES AS YOUR INTERIM SUPERINTENDENT. ON THAT NOTE, WHEN I THINK ABOUT MR. AIDEM, I WILL TELL YOU NEVER OUTSIDE OF THIS BUILDING OR INSIDE THE BUILDING, THE WALLS, WORKING WITH HIM, DID I EVER CONSIDER CALLING HIM ANYTHING BESIDES MR. AIDEM. JUST HAD THAT MUCH RESPECT FOR HIM. IT WASN'T UNTIL WE BOTH RETIRED AND I HAD A CHANCE TO SPEAK TO HIM DURING HIS ILLNESS THAT I CALLED HIM KEN. THANK YOU VERY MUCH FOR YOUR HELP TONIGHT. APPRECIATE YOUR SINCERE THOUGHTFULNESS OF THIS OPPORTUNITY FOR MR. AIDEM. AND THANK YOU VERY MUCH. AND THANK YOU, MR. AYRES.  

>>Nadia Combs: THANK YOU. AND THANK YOUR FAMILY. THANK YOU. NEXT SPEAKER, PLEASE.  

>> GOOD AFTERNOON. I THINK ALL OF US ECHO THE EMOTION IN MR. GAFFNEY'S VOICE. MY NAME IS DEBBIE CLEVELAND. I WAS A CHORAL MUSIC EDUCATOR FOR 36 YEARS IN SECONDARY LEVEL SCHOOLS HERE IN HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY. I'VE SEEN MANY FINE TEACHERS AND ADMINISTRATORS DURING THAT TIME. I'VE ALSO HAD THE HONOR OF BEING GUEST FACULTY FOR CHORAL MUSIC WORKSHOPS ALL OVER THE UNITED STATES, SEVERAL EUROPEAN COUNTRIES, AUSTRALIA, NEW ZEALAND AND MET AMAZING EDUCATORS WHO WERE PASSIONATE ABOUT THEIR STUDENTS AND ABOUT TEACHING. IN ALL OF MY EXPERIENCE, THERE IS NO ONE WHO SURPASSES KEN AIDEM AS A CHAMPION OF STUDENTS, FAMILIES, TEACHERS, AND STAFF. I HAD THE PRIVILEGE OF WORKING FOR MR. AIDEM FOR MANY YEARS AT TWO DIFFERENT SCHOOLS WHILE HE WAS PRINCIPAL, ADAMS JUNIOR HIGH AND GAITHER HIGH SCHOOL. I LEARNED SO MUCH FROM HIM JUST BY HIS EXAMPLE. BESIDES THE MANY PROGRAMS HE INITIATED AND THE MANY AWARDS HE WON, FIRST AND FOREMOST, HE LOVED STUDENTS. AND HE WOULD WORK TIRELESSLY TO HELP ANY ONE OF THEM OR ALL OF THEM AS A GROUP. HE SUPPORTED HIS TEACHERS AND STAFF AND TOOK AN INTEREST IN ALL OF US AS PEOPLE. HE ATTENDED EVERY COCURRICULAR AND EXTRACURRICULAR ACTIVITY POSSIBLE, NOT JUST TO BE SEEN, BUT TO LET THE STUDENTS, TEACHERS, AND COACHES KNOW THAT THEIR ACCOMPLISHMENTS WERE IMPORTANT AND THAT HE CARED. HE PARTICIPATED IN OUR COMMUNITY CHORUS WHEN INVITED, EVEN THOUGH SINGING WAS DEFINITELY NOT HIS AREA OF EXPERTISE, HE STILL JOINED IN WITH HIS WHOLE HEART AND QUITE A LOUD VOICE. HE COULD ALWAYS BE SEEN ALL OVER THE CAMPUS ENCOURAGING INDIVIDUALS AND DOING ONE OF HIS SIGNATURE MOVES, PICKING UP TRASH OFF THE FLOOR. HE ALWAYS SAID IF THE KIDS DON'T SEE THAT WE CARE ABOUT OUR SCHOOL, THEY WON'T CARE EITHER. I CONTINUED FOLLOWING HIS EXAMPLE THROUGHOUT MY CAREER, NOT ONLY PICKING UP TRASH, BUT ALSO HOLDING MYSELF TO A HIGHER STANDARD OVERALL AS AN EDUCATOR. I VALUED EVERY STAFF MEMBER AND I LOVED STUDENTS AND FAMILIES BETTER BECAUSE I KNEW HIM. MR. AIDEM WAS ALSO A DEVOTED FAMILY MAN WHO LOVED HIS WIFE AND CHILDREN AND GAVE STUDENTS AN EXAMPLE OF FAMILY THEY SO SORELY NEEDED. THEY COULD LOOK AT HIM AND LISTEN TO HIS HEART OVERFLOW ABOUT HIS FAMILY AND KNOW IT IS POSSIBLE TO FORGE LOVING RELATIONSHIPS AND CREATE PEACEFUL HOMES, SOMETHING MANY OF OUR STUDENTS, UNFORTUNATELY, CANNOT EVEN FATHOM. THE MOST RECENT APPRECIATION I FOUND FOR MR. AIDEM CAME LAST YEAR DURING MY FIRST YEAR OF A HAPPY RETIREMENT. I AM IN AWE WHEN I REMEMBER THAT HE CAME BACK INTO THE SCHOOLS AFTER HIS RETIREMENT AS A VOLUNTEER MENTOR FOR YOUNG TEACHERS TO ULTIMATELY BENEFIT A NEW GENERATION OF STUDENTS WHOM HE ALSO CHOSE TO LOVE. I BELIEVE THAT THE ADMINISTRATION, STAFF, FACULTY, AND STUDENTS OF THIS BRAND-NEW SCHOOL WOULD BE HONORED TO BE A PART OF THE INCREDIBLE LEGACY OF KEN AIDEM. THANK YOU SO MUCH. [ APPLAUSE ]  

>>Nadia Combs: THANK YOU. SPEAKERS 11 THROUGH 15 CAN PLEASE LINE UP. THE NEXT SPEAKER, PLEASE.  

>> GOOD AFTERNOON. THANK YOU FOR HAVING ME HERE TODAY. MY NAME IS BETSY BRADEN. MY KIDS WENT TO MABRY, COLEMAN AND PLANT. I'M HERE TO THANK THE SCHOOL BOARD FOR SUPPORTING THE PRIDE PROCLAMATION AT THE SCHOOL BOARD MEETING IN JUNE. PLEASE CONTINUE YOUR SUPPORT FOR THE LGBTQ COMMUNITY. CURRENTLY, THEY ARE UNDER ATTACK FROM THE STATE LEGISLATURE. REMEMBER THEIR FIRST AMENDMENT RIGHTS. AGREE TO USE -- AGREE TO THEIR USE OF PRONOUNS AND NAMES AND BATHROOM CHOICES. SUPPORT BOOKS THAT REFLECT THEIR STORIES. SUPPORT AFRICAN AMERICAN HISTORY, TOO. DON'T TEACH THE LIES THAT SLAVERY HELPED THE SLAVES BY HELPING THEM WITH WORK EXPERIENCE. HISTORY CAN BE UNCOMFORTABLE, BUT IT IS IMPORTANT TO TEACH THE TRUTH SO WE DON'T REPEAT THE ATROCITIES. REFUSE TO USE PRAGER U. THIS IS NOT A UNIVERSITY. THIS IS PROPAGANDA PUT FORTH BY DENNIS PRAGER AND HIS ILK AND FINANCED BY THE KOCH BROTHERS. THIS SO-CALLED EDUCATIONAL MATERIAL IS ANTI-CLIMATE. IT IS RACIST, HOMOPHOBIC AND MISOGYNIST. SUPPORT THE TEACHERS AND THEIR UNION. THEY ARE BEING ATTACKED BY THE FAR RIGHT EXTREMISTS. PLEASE STOP THE BOOK BANS. THE BOOK BANS COME FROM A SMALL HANDFUL OF EXTREMISTS. THEY WANT TO BAN BOOKS ABOUT MINORITIES. THEY WANT TO STOP FREE SPEECH AND CRITICAL THINKING. REMEMBER, FIRST THEY CAME FOR THE BOOKS. THEN THEY CAME FOR THE PEOPLE. THANK YOU.  

>>Nadia Combs: THANK YOU. NEXT SPEAKER.  

>> GOOD EVENING. TINA WILLIAMS BREWSTER. HI. YOU ALL KNOW ME. WELCOME, BOARD, MR. AYRES. TONIGHT I'LL COME BACK AND TALK ABOUT RESOURCES OR THE LACK THEREOF, SPECIFICALLY EOC AND 504 STUDENTS. CAN WE ALL GET THE SCHOOL IMPROVEMENT PLAN, MAYBE SOME PARENTS DON'T, BUT I DO. I ACTUALLY READ THEM. LOOKING AT THE SCHOOL IMPROVEMENT PLAN FOR GAITHER, IT DOESN'T ADD UP. NOW, TEST DATA HAVE SHOWN SYSTEMICALLY THAT OUR STUDENTS JUST NOT AT GAITHER BUT HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY DISTRICTWIDE, THEY ARE CONSTANTLY NOT PASSING MATH. THEY ARE NOT READING. SCIENCE, LET'S NOT EVEN TALK ABOUT THAT, BUT THE RESOURCES DON'T ADD UP. WHY? BUT WE WANT TO COME BEFORE THE PARENTS AND SAY, HEY, SPEND MONEY, PUT IT ON THE BALLOT UNTIL SOMEONE SHOWS ME SOMETHING DIFFERENT, MY VOTE IS AN EMPHATIC NO AND I'M GOING TO RAISE THE ROOF TO NO. I'M NOT GOING TO INVEST MY MONEY IN POOR SCHOOLS. I'M INVOLVED, FOR INSTANCE, SAC, I'VE BEEN ASKING FOR TWO YEARS, PUT ME ON SAC. I'M NOT AN ENEMY. I'D GLADLY GIVE YOU SUGGESTIONS THAT ARE PROVEN AND WORK. I WAS A SAC MEMBER FOR MANY, MANY YEARS AT CARROLLWOOD. THEY LOVE ME. I STILL CAN GO BACK THERE. IT DEPENDS ON ONE OF MY FAVORITE AUTHORS SAYS, PEOPLE WILL FORGET WHAT YOU DO OR SAY, BUT THEY'LL NEVER FORGET HOW YOU TREAT THEM. HOW ARE WE TREATING OUR STUDENTS? LOOK AT THE DATA. WE HAVE ALL THESE MEETINGS AND WHAT ARE WE DOING WITH IT? WHERE IS THE STANDARD OF EXCELLENCE? SCHOOL STARTS AUGUST 10. RESOURCES SHOULDN'T START TWO, THREE, FOUR, FIVE, SIX WEEKS AFTER THAT. MAKE IT MAKE SENSE. WE SPEND ALL THIS MONEY ON LUNCH AND LEARNS. WE ALL COULD LOSE 10 OR 12 POUNDS. THERE ARE KIDS WHO ARE FOOD INSECURE. MAKE IT MAKE SENSE. STOP WASTING THE MONEY THAT WE DO HAVE. PUT IT ON THE STUDENTS. STUDENTS COME FIRST. STUDENTS MATTER. WE KEEP ON SAYING PREPARING STUDENTS FOR LIFE. WHAT KIND OF LIFE IS THAT. CAN'T READ ON THE THIRD GRADE READING LEVEL. CAN'T ADD. SYSTEMICALLY, OUR TEST SCORES HAVE GOTTEN WORSE. START RELYING ON COVID. COVID IS DEAD. GET OVER IT. PULL YOURSELF UP. BE GREAT, AND REMEMBER WHY YOU GOT INTO TEACHING IN THE FIRST PLACE. IT'S FOR THE STUDENTS. IF YOU NEED HELP, SAY I NEED HELP. PARENTS WILL WORK WITH YOU, BUT YOU CANNOT CONTINUE TO IGNORE THE STUDENTS. YOU CANNOT CONTINUE TO IGNORE THE DATA. MAKE IT MAKE SENSE.  

>>Nadia Combs: THANK YOU. NEXT SPEAKER, PLEASE.  

>> ALAN BREWSTER. GOOD EVENING, TODAY, EVERYONE. I STILL WANT TO TALK ABOUT THE LEADERSHIP AT THE HIGH SCHOOL LEVEL. STILL NEEDS TO BE A PARTNERSHIP BETWEEN THE SCHOOL, THE STUDENT, AND THE PARENT. WHAT IS A PARENT SUPPOSED TO DO IF THEIR CHILD HAS AN ISSUE AT THE SCHOOL AND THE LEADERSHIP IS NOT RESPONDING IN AN EFFECTIVE WAY? WHERE ARE THEY SUPPOSED TO GO? WHO ARE THEY SUPPOSED TO TALK TO? WHO ARE THEY SUPPOSED TO CALL? NOW, YOU GO OUTSIDE THE SCHOOL AND CALL THE DISTRICT AND YOU GET FOUR OR FIVE DIFFERENT PEOPLE TO TALK TO, AND THEY TELL YOU TO TALK TO THIS PERSON. THEN THEY TELL YOU TO TALK TO THAT PERSON. TO SAY, OH, YOU NEED TO GO BACK TO THE SCHOOL. SO NOW WE'RE AT A STALEMATE BECAUSE THE LEADERSHIP IS NOT COMMUNICATING WITH THE PARENT, BUT THE STUDENT IS CAUGHT IN THE MIDDLE WITH THE ISSUE. THE ISSUE THAT THE STUDENT NEEDS TO BE RESOLVED. TUTORING, NO ONE CAN FIGURE IT OUT AT GAITHER. OH, WE NEED TO SEE WHAT THE PRINCIPAL SAYS OR IF THEY HAD THE FUNDS TO HAVE THE TUTORING, BUT YET IT'S IN THE STUDENT'S IEP. IT'S WELL PAST AUGUST THE 10th AND YET THEY ARE STILL TALKING ABOUT TRYING TO GET A TUTOR. THE TEACHER OFFERED BUT I THINK IT WAS JUST AN APPEASEMENT BECAUSE EVERY TIME THE STUDENT GOES TO GET THE TUTORING, "OH, I HAVE TO GO TO A MEETING." SO NOW THE STUDENT IS FRUSTRATED. YOU'RE ACTUALLY TAKING AWAY THEIR CONFIDENCE TO COME TO THE ADULTS IN THE BUILDING AND ASK FOR HELP OR SAY, HEY, I NEED RESOURCES. THAT'S WHAT THEY ARE REALLY DOING. THEY ARE STIFLING THE STUDENT TO COME AND LET THEIR VOICE BE HEARD. AND THAT'S WHAT IS HAPPENING ALL BECAUSE OF THE LEADERSHIP. IT STARTS WITH THE LEADERSHIP. IT STARTS WITH THE LEADERSHIP. AND THE LEADERSHIP IS NOT EFFECTIVE IT TRICKLES DOWN. THERE ARE OTHER PEOPLE IN THE BUILDING TRYING TO HELP BUT THEY CAN'T MAKE THE DECISION BECAUSE THEY ARE NOT THE LEADER OF THE BUILDING. I KEEP SAYING IT'S ABOUT GAITHER. THE LEADERSHIP IS INEFFECTIVE. IF YOU DON'T BELIEVE ME, LOOK AT THE DATA AT THE SCHOOL. LOOK AT IT. IT'S THERE IN BLACK AND WHITE.  

>>Nadia Combs: THANK YOU. NEXT SPEAKER, PLEASE.  

>> HI. I'M ASHLEY. I AM A MOTHER AND AN AUNTIE. HELLO. I'M ASHLEY. THIS IS MY FIRST TIME HERE. SORRY. I'M VERY NERVOUS. I HOMESCHOOL MY CHILD DUE TO THE RESTRICTIONS OF THE FACT THE DON'T SAY GAY BILL HAS BEEN PASSED AND MY DAUGHTER IS AFRAID TO TALK ABOUT HER PARENTS. MY NEPHEWS ALSO GO TO PUBLIC SCHOOL AND THEY ARE AFRAID TO TALK ABOUT THEIR AUNTIES. I DID WRITE THIS, SO I'LL GO AHEAD AND READ IT. I MIGHT CRY. THIS IS VERY EMOTIONAL FOR ME. SO TODAY I STAND BEFORE YOU AS A PROUD MEMBER OF THE LGBTQ+. WE HAVE COME TO FOUND THE PROFOUND -- BIRACIAL ANCESTORS AND PROMOTING INCLUSION FOR OUR YOUTH. BY TEACHING OUR CHILD OF THE TRUE HISTORY OF THEIR ANCESTORS, WE ENSURE THEY GROW UP WITH A DEEP APPRECIATION FOR THEIR ROOTS AND THEIR STRUGGLES, TRIUMPHS AND CONTRIBUTIONS OF THOSE WHO CAME BEFORE THEM. WE MUST ACKNOWLEDGE THE INJUSTICES AND DISCRIMINATIONS THAT MANY LGBTQIA INDIVIDUALS AND PEOPLE OF COLOR HAVE BEEN FACED WITH. BUT OUR COMMITMENT TO INCLUSION EXTENDS BEYOND OUR OWN FAMILY. WE BELIEVE IN A WORLD WHERE BLACK PEOPLE OF COLOR AND LGBTQIA YOUTH GROW UP WITH RESPONSE, ACCEPTANCE AND LOVE. IT IS NOT A BUZZWORD. IT IS A CALL TO ACTION. CREATING SAFE SPACES IN SCHOOLS, COMMUNITIES AND SOCIETY AT-LARGE WHERE LGBTQIA YOUTH CAN BE THEMSELVES WITHOUT FEAR OF JUDGMENT OR DISCRIMINATION. WE MUST RECOGNIZE THE CHALLENGES FACED FOR LGBTQIA YOUTH ARE REAL AND IN MANY CASES DEVASTATING. HIGH RATES OF BULLYING, MENTAL HEALTH STRUGGLES AND EVEN HOMELESSNESS AMONG LGBTQIA HIGHLIGHT THE EMERGENCY OF THE SITUATION. WE MUST STAND TOGETHER TO ENSURE EVERY YOUNG PERSON REGARDLESS OF THEIR SEXUAL ORIENTATION OR GENDER IDENTITY CAN THRIVE AND REACH THEIR FULL POTENTIAL. WE INVITE EACH AND EVERY ONE OF YOU TO JOIN US IN THIS ENDEAVOR. TOGETHER, WE CAN BUILD A WORLD WHERE DIVERSITY IS CELEBRATED, WHERE LOVE IS LOVE, AND WHERE NO ONE IS LEFT BEHIND. PLEASE REMEMBER WHEN THE BOOK BANNING BECOMES A THING AND PEOPLE ARE LOOKING AT THESE BECAUSE THEY SEE BLACK WOMEN OR MEN OR NATIVE AMERICANS, INDIGENOUS, OR EVEN TWO MOMS OR TWO DADS, THAT MY DAUGHTER DESERVES TO SEE HER FAMILY THERE AND HERSELF IN THOSE BOOKS. THANK YOU.  

>>Nadia Combs: THANK YOU. NEXT SPEAKER, PLEASE.  

>> HEY. I'M BETH JOHNSON. I CAME HERE TO SPEAK ABOUT THE CELL PHONE ISSUE AND HOW I THINK IT RELATES TO SOME OF THE OTHER SPEAKERS THAT HAVE COME FORWARD BECAUSE I THINK WHAT HAS HAPPENED WITH CELL PHONES IS THAT OUR COMMUNITIES AND OUR CHILDREN AND OUR SCHOOLS AND OUR FEELINGS ARE DIVIDED. SO I WOULD ENCOURAGE YOU TO CONTINUE TO TAKE A LOOK AT THAT SUBJECT. I THINK SOME OF THE TECH GIANTS ARE MOSTLY CONCERNED ABOUT MAKING THEIR OWN MONEY. I'VE RAISED THREE CHILDREN, ALMOST. I HAVE ONE THAT GRADUATED IN 2015. ONE THAT GRADUATED IN 2018, AND ONE THAT WILL GRADUATE IN 2025. AND THE SEA CHANGE IS ENORMOUS. IT IS SO MUCH MORE DIFFICULT TO PARENT THESE DAYS. I LOOK AT WHAT YOU ALL HAD TODAY. YOU HAD BEAUTIFUL ORCHESTRA PEOPLE. THEY WERE FOCUSED ON SOMETHING THAT WAS HAPPENING IN THE 1800s. WE TALKED ABOUT BOOKS AND LIBRARIES. I WILL HAVE TO SAY THAT, YOU KNOW, SOMETIMES I'M WORRIED ABOUT WHAT IS IN THE MIDDLE SCHOOL BOOKS. I'M GOING TO SAY THAT AND JUST PUT IT OUT THERE. BUT THE FIRST AMENDMENT IS A REALLY GREAT THING. OUR INSTITUTION IS A REALLY GREAT THING. AND WE HAVE TO REMEMBER THERE IS A CASE CALLED TINKER. I USED TO PRACTICE IN MEDIA LAW. THAT SAYS WHAT HAPPENS IN THE SCHOOLHOUSE DOOR IS DIFFERENT THAN WHAT HAPPENS IN COLLEGE CAMPUSES. SO IF I OPEN A BOOK AND I WANT TO PUT THE GAY ISSUE ASIDE AND IT SEEMS LIKE I'M TALKING ABOUT DISPARATE SUBJECTS, BUT BELIEVE ME, I THINK THEY RELATE. I CAN GO BY HUCKLEBERRY FINN IN BARNES & NOBLE. I MIGHT NOT WANT TO THESE DAYS. BECAUSE OF THAT LANGUAGE THAT IS OUT OF DATE. I DON'T WANT HUCKLEBERRY FINN IN MY SCHOOL LIBRARY, BUT IT'S NOT BOOK BANNING FOR MY SCHOOL LIBRARY TO SAY WE'RE NOT GOING TO HAVE THAT BOOK THERE. SO I WANT YOU-ALL TO BE CAUTIOUS. I WANT YOU TO LOOK AT AGE ISSUES SPECIFICALLY. I WANT EVERYBODY TO HOPEFULLY LOOK AT THE LOVE AND JOY THAT IS IN THE ROOM FROM EVERY DISPARATE POLITICAL SPECTRUM, RACE, GENDER, GENDER IDEOLOGY, AND WONDER IF WE NEED MAYBE A LITTLE MORE ORCHESTRA AND A LITTLE LESS CELL PHONE. THANK YOU.  

>>Nadia Combs: THANK YOU. NEXT SPEAKER, PLEASE.  

>> HI. GOOD EVENING. MEMBERS OF THE BOARD AND MR. AYRES. I'M CASS MILLER. A PARENT OF TWO AMAZING KIDS IN OUR COUNTY PUBLIC SCHOOLS. THIS SUMMER, OUR CHILD LEILA FELT SAFE ENOUGH TO SHARE WITH THEIR FATHER AND I THAT THEY ARE NONBINARY. I WAS SO PROUD AS A PARENT THAT MY CHILD FELT NO FEAR CONFIDING IN ME, WITH ALL THE LEGISLATIVE ATTACKS ON LGBTQ YOUTHS AND THE COMMUNITY IN FLORIDA, THEIR FATHER AND I WORRIED THAT THIS WOULD MEAN OUR BRILLIANT THOUGHTFUL CARING CHILD WOULDN'T HAVE SUCH A NICE EXPERIENCE AT SCHOOL. THE DATA SHOWS THAT 43% OF TRANSGENDERED YOUTH HAVE BEEN BULLIED ON SCHOOL PROPERTY. 29% OF TRANSGENDERED YOUTH, 21% OF GAY AND LESBIAN YOUTH AND 22% OF BISEXUAL YOUTH HAVE ATTEMPTED SUICIDE. FOR SOME STUDENTS, SCHOOL IS THEIR ONLY SAFE SPACE. BOOKS IN A LIBRARY ARE THEIR ONLY REPRESENTATION THAT THEY'LL SEE THEMSELVES. LET'S KEEP IT THAT WAY. WITH THAT, I WANT TO THANK YOU SO VERY MUCH FOR RELEASING THE LGBTQ GUIDELINES FOR HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY. WE ARE A PUBLIC SCHOOL FAMILY. AND WE ARE SINCERELY GRATEFUL THAT EDUCATORS DO NOT NEED TO GRAPPLE WITH RESPECTING, LOVING, OUR CHILD AT THE RISK OF LOSING THEIR JOBS. ADDITIONALLY, AS A PUBLIC EDUCATION ADVOCATE, I WANT TO THANK THE BOARD AND MR. AYRES FOR THEIR HARD WORK IN RESTORING TRUST IN HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY PUBLIC SCHOOLS RECENTLY. THERE'S ALWAYS ROOM FOR IMPROVEMENT, BUT I AM PROUD TO SEE ALL OF YOU ON THE PATH OF PROGRESS AND I'M REALLY GRATEFUL.  

>> I AM LEILA. AND I AM IN FIFTH GRADE. I WANTED TO TALK TONIGHT BECAUSE I HAVE A FEAR HERE THAT PEOPLE WON'T ACCEPT ME FOR WHO I AM. STRAIGHT-A STUDENT AT A HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY PUBLIC SCHOOL. I LOVE LEARNING, DRAWING, AND BEING CREATIVE. I AM NONBINARY. I AM NOT A BOY OR A GIRL BECAUSE NONE OF THEM SUIT. LETTING ME CHOOSES MY GENDER. PLEASE CONTINUE STANDING UP FOR ME AND OTHER KIDS ALIKE. STANDING UP FOR ME AND MY FREEDOM AND MY -- KIDS LIKE ME AREN'T SCARY. WE ARE JUST KIDS. THANK YOU FOR RELEASING THE LGBTQ GUIDELINES AND FOR KEEPING HILLSBOROUGH SAFE AND INCLUSIVE FOR US. THANK YOU. [ APPLAUSE ]  

>>Nadia Combs: THANK YOU. NEXT SPEAKER.  

>> HI. GOOD EVENING. MY NAME IS STEPHANIE ROBERTS. I DON'T HAVE A CHILD IN HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY SCHOOLS, BUT I AM A CHILD OF HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY SCHOOLS AND MY MOTHER IS A RETIRED TEACHER FROM HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY SCHOOLS, THE SCHOOL SYSTEM. AND I'M REALLY ONLY HERE TO SUPPORT THE LGBTQ COMMUNITY. I'M HERE FOR MORE THAN THAT. BUT I WANT TO SAY THANK YOU FOR REJECTING ANY OF THE HATE-FILLED LEGISLATION FROM TALLAHASSEE. I WANT TO ASK YOU TO CONTINUE TO PUSH BACK, BECAUSE EVEN THOUGH I DON'T HAVE A CHILD AT STAKE, I FEEL LIKE ALL THE CHILDREN THAT ARE A PART OF THE COUNTY, I FEEL LIKE THEY ARE ME WHEN I GRADUATED SO MANY YEARS AGO. SO I WANT TO SAY THANK YOU. THANK YOU VERY MUCH TO THE HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY BOARD MEMBERS AND ALSO TO SAY THAT DIVERSITY, EQUITY, AND INCLUSION IS NOT A BAD THING. NO MATTER HOW MUCH PUSH-BACK YOU GET FROM TALLAHASSEE, AGAIN, NO MATTER HOW MUCH WE SEE THE CHANGES OCCURRING THROUGH SOME OF THE OLDER UNIVERSITIES, THE COLLEGES, SMALLER COLLEGES, PLEASE CONTINUE TO KEEP STUDENTS AND FAMILIES AND PARENTS, ALL PARENTS IN MIND WHEN IT COMES TO TO PUSH-BACK FROM LET'S SAY PARENTS OF A PARTICULAR MINDSET. THAT DOESN'T MEAN ALL PARENTS FEEL THE SAME WAY. AND THOSE PARENTS HAVE THE RIGHT TO HAVE THEIR CHILDREN BE RESPECTED AS WELL. THANK YOU FOR PUSHING BACK ON THE PRAGER UNIVERSITY. THANK YOU SO MUCH. NO MATTER HOW MUCH PRESSURE YOU GET FROM TALLAHASSEE, CONTINUE TO AT LEAST -- THANK YOU FOR AT LEAST THE -- WE AS A COMMUNITY GET TO SPEAK, BUT THANK YOU FOR PUSHING BACK AND NOT ACCEPTING THAT. THANK YOU FOR NOT ACCEPTING THAT. KEEP UP THE HARD WORK. I KNOW IT'S TOUGH SOMETIMES BECAUSE YOU ALL ARE A PART OF THE RED TAPE BRIGADE, BUT WE ARE GRATEFUL THAT, FOR INSTANCE, THE LGBTQ GUIDELINES FOR THE HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY HAS JUST BEEN RELEASED. THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR ALL OF THAT. SO THANK YOU. IF YOU DON'T HEAR IT ENOUGH, THANK YOU. THANK YOU VERY MUCH.  

>>Nadia Combs: THANK YOU. OUR FINAL SPEAKER FOR TODAY.  

>> GOOD EVENING TO THE WHOLE BOARD. YEAH, THE TRAFFIC AND MY GPS, SO I REALLY APPRECIATE YOU LETTING ME SPEAK. YES, I WANT TO THANK YOU SO MUCH. MY NAME IS TANYA REUBIN. I'VE BEEN A BUSINESS OWNER IN HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY FOR 31 YEARS AND ALSO MY TWO DAUGHTERS WENT TO ELEMENTARY, MIDDLE SCHOOL, AND HIGH SCHOOL IN HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY. I'M A FIRM BELIEVER IN PUBLIC SCHOOL. HOPEFULLY YOU'VE HEARD IT ENOUGH TODAY, BUT THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR WHAT YOU GUYS DID. IT GAVE ME CHILLS WHEN I HEARD WHEN YOU RELEASED THE GUIDELINES AND YOU DIDN'T JUST GO WITH THE NARRATIVE THAT THEY HAD BEEN PUSHING. SO I REALLY, REALLY WANT TO THANK YOU FOR THAT. ONE OF MY DAUGHTERS IS GAY AND ONE IS NOT. BUT, OF COURSE, I WANT ALL CHILDREN AND, OF COURSE, BOTH OF MY DAUGHTERS TO BE TREATED THE SAME WAY. I'M ALSO JEWISH, SO IT'S VERY SCARY FOR THE JEWISH COMMUNITY TO SEE A LOT OF NAZIS, A LOT OF ANTI-SEMITISM STEMMING UP HERE IN THE STATE OF FLORIDA. WE HAVE TO FIGHT BACK. SO I REMEMBER WHEN MY DAUGHTER WAS IN 8th GRADE AT WALKER, I WAS IN CHARGE OF GETTING THE SPEAKERS FROM THE HOLOCAUST TO COME AND SPEAK TO THE 8th GRADE CLASS AS PART OF THEIR HISTORY IN SOCIAL STUDIES. THERE ARE NOT MANY SURVIVORS ANYMORE. TWO WOMEN CAME WHO WERE IN THEIR 80s. IT WAS THE WHOLE 8th GRADE IN THE CAFETERIA AND YOU COULD NOT HEAR A PIN DROP. THE STORIES THEY TOLD WERE JUST UNBELIEVABLE. THAT'S WHAT WE HAVE TO DO, KEEP TELLING THE STORIES BECAUSE NOW PEOPLE ARE SAYING IT DIDN'T EVEN HAPPEN AND JUST CRAZY NONSENSE. THAT'S WHY WE NEED TO -- OH, AND THEN AFTERWARDS, A LOT OF THE KIDS CAME UP AND TALKED TO THEM AND GOT PICTURES AND THEY'LL NEVER FORGET THAT. THAT'S WHY IT IS SO VERY IMPORTANT TO HAVE THESE SPEAKERS AND CONVERSATIONS IN ALL AREAS OF THE SCHOOL AND THE SAME WITH AFRICAN AMERICAN STUDIES. WE CAN'T JUST -- WE CAN'T GO BACK TO THE WAY THINGS WERE MANY, MANY YEARS AGO. AGAIN, THANK YOU FOR PUSH-BACK ON PRAGER U. I REALLY APPRECIATE IT. THANK YOU FOR YOUR HARD WORK. [ APPLAUSE ]  

>>Nadia Combs: THANK YOU. AND THAT CONCLUDES OUR PUBLIC COMMENT FOR TODAY. I NEED A MOTION AND A SECOND TO APPROVE THE CONSENT AGENDA. I HAVE A MOTION BY MEMBER PEREZ. I HAVE A SECOND BY MEMBER GRAY. PLEASE VOTE WHEN YOUR LIGHTS APPEAR. IT PASSES UNANIMOUSLY. THE FOLLOWING ITEMS WILL NOW BE HEARD. C 2.01, 7.06, 10.01, 11.03, 11.05 AND 11.06. SUPERINTENDENT, DID YOU HAVE SOME ADMINISTRATIVE APPOINTMENTS PRIOR TO THAT? NO. I JUST WANTED TO MAKE SURE. THANK YOU. WE'LL START WITH C 2.01, WHICH IS THE 2023-2024 CAREER AND TECHNICAL CTE ACTIVITIES CALENDAR. SUPERINTENDENT AYRES WILL HIGHLIGHT THIS ITEM.  

>>Van Ayres: THANK YOU, MADAM CHAIR. THE CTE ACTIVITIES CALENDAR IS OUR FIRST AGENDA ITEM. THIS INCLUDES ACTIVITIES FROM CAREER AND TECHNICAL STUDENT ORGANIZATIONS, CAREER EXPLORATION VISITS AND REGIONAL CTE EVENTS. THIS CALENDAR IDENTIFIES FOR THE BOARD ACTIVITIES BETWEEN SEPTEMBER 20th OF THIS YEAR, SEPTEMBER 20th OF THIS YEAR AND OCTOBER 22nd, 2024.  

>>Nadia Combs: THANK YOU. I NEED A MOTION AND SECOND TO APPROVE ITEM C 2.01. MOTION BY MEMBER GRAY. I HAVE A SECOND BY MEMBER WASHINGTON. MEMBER RENDON, YOU PULLED THIS ITEM. DO YOU HAVE ANY QUESTIONS OR COMMENTS?  

>>Patti Rendon: YES, THANK YOU, MADAM CHAIR. I JUST WANT TO TAKE A MINUTE AND JUST THANK OUR CTE PROGRAM AND ALL THE PROGRAMS AROUND HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY THAT ARE REALLY WORKING TO PREPARE OUR STUDENTS FOR AFTER HIGH SCHOOL. WHETHER IT'S OUR CAREER AND DEVELOPMENT PROGRAMS, OUR ROTCs, THEY ARE MAKING LEADERS OF SO MANY OF OUR STUDENTS. THE TIME AND ENERGY THEY ARE TAKING FOR SO MANY CERTIFICATES TO PREPARE STUDENTS NO MATTER WHAT PATH THEY TAKE AFTER HIGH SCHOOL, THEY HAVE TOOLS TO BE ABLE TO SUPPORT THEMSELVES. THEY HAVE TOOLS THAT ARE GIVING THEM RESUMÉS THAT ARE GOING TO BE ABLE TO GET THEM JOBS FOR THE FUTURE AND BE ABLE TO SUSTAIN THEMSELVES AFTER HIGH SCHOOL. SO I JUST REALLY WANT TO TAKE AN OPPORTUNITY TO THANK OUR CTE PROGRAMS, OUR CAREER AND TECHNICAL PROGRAMS, AND THANK THEM FOR ALL THAT THEY ARE DOING IN GIVING OUR STUDENTS AN OPPORTUNITY. I ALSO WANT TO SPECIFICALLY THANK OUR JROTC PROGRAMS ALL ACROSS OUR COUNTIES, EACH AND EVERY ONE OF THEM ARE BUILDING STRONG LEADERS THAT ARE GOING TO BE LOOKING AT FUTURE MILITARY CAREERS THAT ARE DEFENDING THE FREEDOMS OF ALL AMERICANS. SO THANK YOU SO MUCH EACH AND EVERY ONE OF THOSE PROGRAMS AND THE ADMINISTRATION AND FACULTY FOR PROMOTING THOSE PROGRAMS.  

>>Nadia Combs: BOARD MEMBERS, PLEASE VOTE WHEN YOUR LIGHTS APPEAR. AND IT PASSES UNANIMOUSLY. 7.06, PIGGYBACK 23187-PGB-IV CAPITAL IMPROVEMENT PROGRAM OWNERS REPRESENTATIVE. SUPERINTENDENT AYRES WILL HIGHLIGHT THIS PROGRAM.  

>>Van Ayres: THANK YOU, MADAM CHAIR. PREVIOUSLY THE OPERATIONS DIVISION CONTRACTED WITH PROJECT MANAGEMENT VENDORS TO ASSIST WITH SIMULTANEOUS CAPITAL PROJECTS. THE DISTRICT IS THANKFUL TO HAVE THE SUPPORT OF THE HALF-CENT SALES TAX REFERENDUM. BECAUSE OF THIS, PROJECTS HAVE INCREASED DRASTICALLY OVER THE PAST SEVERAL YEARS AND THE DISTRICT REQUIRES ADDITIONAL PROJECT MANAGEMENT TO SUPPORT, TO EXECUTE THESE PROJECTS. WITH THREE RETIREMENTS PLANNED OVER THE COURSE OF THE NEXT YEAR, THE OPERATION DIVISION REQUIRES CONSISTENCY WITH ITS CURRENT AND FUTURE CAPITAL PROJECTS.  

>>Nadia Combs: THANK YOU, SUPERINTENDENT AYRES. I NEED A MOTION AND SECOND TO APPROVE ITEM C 7.06. I HAVE A MOTION BY MEMBER WASHINGTON. I HAVE A SECOND BY MEMBER PEREZ. THANK YOU. MEMBER VAUGHN, YOU PULLED THIS ITEM. DO YOU HAVE ANY QUESTIONS OR COMMENTS?  

>>Jessica Vaughn: I DO, THANK YOU. I ACTUALLY HAD SOME CONSTITUENTS REACH OUT ABOUT THIS IN GENERAL. SO, MR. FARKAS, CAN YOU ADD ON A LITTLE BIT TO WHAT SUPERINTENDENT AYRES HIGHLIGHTED AND EXPLAIN A LITTLE MORE IN DETAIL FOR THIS $2.5 MILLION, HOW THIS WILL IMPACT OUR SCHOOLS, WHERE EXACTLY IT'S GOING FOR, WHAT IS THE OVERSIGHT AND IF THERE WERE ANY PROCUREMENT PIECES TO THIS?  

>>Christopher Farkas: YES, MA'AM, I WOULD BE HAPPY TO. THE GROUP CURRENTLY DOES WORK IN OTHER SCHOOL DISTRICTS, MAINLY RUN THE FORT WORTH PROGRAM. THEY ACT AS OWNERS REPRESENTATIVES. REPORT TO US, MY DIVISION. THEY WORK, TO WORK WITH BOTH THE DESIGN PROFESSIONALS AND THE CONSTRUCTION MANAGERS TO ENSURE THAT THEY FOLLOW OUR RULES, FOLLOW SRF AND FOLLOW OUT THE PLANS TO MAKE SURE THEY ARE DOING WHAT WE HIRED THEM TO DO AND MAKE SURE THEY FOLLOW THE FISCALLY RESPONSIBLE, THAT THEY DO ALL THE THINGS THAT SFR TO MOVE THE PROJECT FORWARD. AURAL THIS IS DONE AND -- ALL THIS IS DONE AND REPORTED THROUGH THE LEADERSHIP. THEY ARE OWNER'S REPRESENTATIVE 37 THEY ARE PAID FOR BY THE. IF THEY WORK TEN HOURS ON A PROGRAM AT PRIDE ELEMENTARY SCHOOL, THOSE TEN HOURS ARE CHARGED TO THE PROJECT AS PART OF THE CAPITAL FUND AND NOT PART OF THE GENERAL FUND.  

>>Jessica Vaughn: WE'RE APPROVING UP TO $2.5 MILLION, WHAT YOU'RE SAYING IS THERE IS A CHANCE DEPENDING ON HOW MANY HOURS THEY ACTUALLY WORK THAT COULD BE BELOW THAT.  

>>Christopher Farkas: YES, MA'AM, ANYTHING CLOSE TO THAT OR COMES TO THAT, THEN COMES BACK TO THE BOARD FOR ANY MORE SPENT.  

>>Jessica Vaughn: BASICALLY, IS IT FAIR TO SAY WE'RE CONTRACTING OUT PROJECT MANAGERS FOR THESE PROJECTS.  

>>Christopher Farkas: YES, MA'AM. WE CURRENTLY HAVE FIVE THAT WORK FOR THE SCHOOL DISTRICT. WE ADVERTISED A BUNCH. HARD TO FIND SOME OF THE PEOPLE. THIS IS A COMPANY COMING IN TO SUPPORT THE CURRENT INTERNAL FIVE PROJECT MANAGERS.  

>>Jessica Vaughn: I SEE THERE IS A 30-DAY TERM NATION CLAUSE. WHAT KIND OF AUDIT ARE WE DOING ON THE PROJECT MANAGERS THAT WE'RE OUTSOURCING FOR THIS PRICE?  

>>Christopher Farkas: TWO VEHICLES. FIRST ONE IS THROUGH THE FINANCIAL. THEY DON'T HAVE THE ABILITY TO PAY OR DO ANYTHING LIKE THAT. EVERYTHING STILL COMES THROUGH OUR ACCOUNTING TEAM THAT ARE INTERNAL EMPLOYEES. ANY PAY APPLICATION, ANYTHING THEY APPROVE STILL HAS TO BE APPROVED BY US. AS FAR AS MONEY GOING OUT THE DOOR, ALREADY HAS THE SAME ACCOUNTABILITY IN PLACE FOR OUR PROJECT MANAGERS. FOR THE ACTUAL PERFORMANCE, THEY REPORT UP THROUGH OTERO, HEADING UP THE CONSTRUCTION TO MAKE SURE THEY MEET THE DEADLINES. WE KNOW WE DO CLOSEOUT DOCUMENTS, THEY ARE ALL PART OF THAT. MR. OTERO WILL HELP ME IN MAKING SURE THEY FOLLOW THE GUIDELINES AND PROVIDE THAT. THIS IS THE THIRD COMPANY WE'VE HAD COME TO DO THE SERVICE. WE HAVE HIGH EXPECTATION. OUR INTERNAL PEOPLE ARE PRETTY GOOD AT WHAT THEY DO. THE OTHER TWO COMPANIES HAVE NOT MET UP TO WHERE WE FEEL COMFORTABLE. THIS IS A TRIAL FOR THEM. IF THEY MEET EXPECTATIONS WHICH WE HOPE AND THINK THEY WILL, THEN THEY CONTINUE ON. IF THEY DON'T, THEN THE 30-DAY OUT WILL BE USED.  

>>Jessica Vaughn: WITH THE PREVIOUS COMPANIES, WAS THERE A CLOSE FINANCIAL IMPACT? BECAUSE I DIDN'T SEE ANYTHING FOR THE YEARS PREVIOUS.  

>>Christopher Farkas: NO. WE ONLY WENT THROUGH LESS THAN ONE YEAR WITH ONE COMPANY AND ONE FULL YEAR WITH THE OTHER COMPANY. NEVER GOT TO THAT. IT WAS A PER HOUR BILL WITH ONE PERSON FROM EACH ONE OF THE COMPANIES. NEVER GOT CLOSE TO THAT.  

>>Jessica Vaughn: ONE-YEAR CONTRACT OR MULTI-YEAR?  

>>Christopher Farkas: THE AMOUNT.  

>>Jessica Vaughn: ONCE WE REACHED THAT AMOUNT, YOU'LL BRING ANOTHER PREAPPROVED AMOUNT TO THE BOARD.  

>>Christopher Farkas: YES, MA'AM.  

>>Jessica Vaughn: ARE THEY LOCATED HERE IN TAMPA?  

>>Christopher Farkas: THEY ARE. THE COMPANY IS BASED OUT OF TEXAS BUT THE PEOPLE WORK FOR US ARE BASED HERE. WORK IN OUR OFFICE FIVE DAYS A WEEK.  

>>Jessica Vaughn: THANK YOU.  

>>Nadia Combs: THANK YOU, MEMBER VAUGHN. MEMBER PEREZ. OH, MEMBER HAHN.  

>>Stacy Hahn: THANK YOU. ALL GREAT QUESTIONS, SIMILAR QUESTIONS THAT I ASKED IN OUR ONE-ON-ONE   AS WELL. YOU KNOW, I'M NOT COMFORTABLE WHEN WE HAVE THESE BIG MULTIYEAR CONTRACTS, BUT I KNOW MR. FARKAS OVER THE LAST COUPLE OF YEARS THAT I'VE BEEN ON THE BOARD, AS HE MENTIONED, THERE HAVE BEEN OTHER COMPANIES WE'VE DONE THIS WITH, AND HE DOES NOT HESITATE FOR A SECOND TO CUT THEM LOOSE WHEN THEY DON'T LIVE UP TO THE EXPECTATION. SO I KNOW THAT THERE ARE HIGH EXPECTATIONS AROUND THIS. I KNOW THAT WE DO HAVE MULTIPLE PEOPLE WITHIN OUR DISTRICT TO DO THIS WORK. PEOPLE CAN MAKE SO MUCH MORE MONEY IN THE PRIVATE SECTOR DOING THIS WORK. THAT'S WHY IT'S SO HARD FOR US TO HIRE AND KEEP PEOPLE. WE'LL LOSE PEOPLE TO THE PRIVATE SECTOR. IT'S CHALLENGING, ESPECIALLY IN CONSTRUCTION RIGHT NOW. THERE'S SO MUCH CONSTRUCTION HAPPENING. EVEN IN OUR DISTRICT. I JUST WANTED TO MAKE THOSE COMMENTS THAT HAVING THAT CONVERSATION MADE ME MORE COMFORTABLE WITH THIS AND KNOWING AS THIS RENEWS, IF IT GOES OVER THE 2.5 IT COMES BACK TO THE BOARD. THANK YOU OPI.  

>>Nadia Combs: THANK YOU, MEMBER HAHN. MEMBER PEREZ.  

>>Karen Perez: YES. WITH THESE COMPANIES, I KNOW THAT WE HAVE LOST SOME TIME. AND PROJECTION OF GETTING PROJECTS COMPLETED BECAUSE THE SCHEMATICS FOR THE BUILDINGS HAVE CHANGED AND THEY ARE PULLING OLD PLANS FOR OUR SCHOOLS, AND IT ENDS UP THAT THE PROJECT IS PUT ON HOLD. HOW ARE WE ON THE FRONT END FIXING THAT SO THAT ON THE BACK END WE'RE NOT LOSING MONEY?  

>>Christopher Farkas: IT'S A GOOD QUESTION. WE HAVEN'T LOST MONEY BUT WE HAVE LOST TIME. AS BUILT DRAWINGS IS KIND OF THE REFERENCE OF WHAT IS CURRENTLY IN PLACE. SOME OF THE OLDER SCHOOLS, EITHER BECAUSE OF THE WAY IT WAS CAPTURED HISTORICALLY OR THE FACT THAT IT JUST WASN'T UP-TO-DATE DRAWINGS. PART OF WHAT WE DO WE PAY PRECONSTRUCTION FEES TO BOTH THE DESIGN PROFESSIONALS AND THE CONSTRUCTION MANAGER. SO SOMETIMES WE NEED TO MAKE SURE WE GET IT RIGHT. IF WE DON'T HAVE ACCURATE, UP-TO-DATE DRAWINGS, WE MAKE THEM GO INTO A FORENSIC STUDY OF WHAT IS CURRENTLY THERE SO WE'RE NOT REPLACING SOMETHING THAT DOESN'T NEED TO BE REPLACED OR VICE VERSA. WE HAVEN'T LOST MONEY BUT HAVE LOST TIME. WE DO PAY FOR THAT, TOO, BECAUSE WE FEEL IT'S REALLY IMPORTANT TO DO THE WORK UP FRONT. DUCTS ARE IMPORTANT. SOMETIMES THEY NEED TO BE REPLACED, SOMETIMES DON'T. SOMETIMES CLEANED. IT'S PART OF WHAT WE ASK OUR DESIGN PROFESSIONALS AND CONSTRUCTION MANAGERS TO DO. THAT WILL BE PART OF THE CONTRACTS THAT THEY COME TO YOU EVERY SINGLE TIME TO MAKE SURE WE DO THE RIGHT WORK.  

>>Karen Perez: PERFECT. THANK YOU.  

>>Nadia Combs: THANK YOU, BOARD MEMBERS. BOARD MEMBERS, PLEASE VOTE WHEN YOUR LIGHTS APPEAR. IT PASSES UNANIMOUSLY. 10.01, THE PIGGYBACK 22063-PGB-01 CELLULAR COMMUNICATION DEVICES.  

>>Van Ayres: THANK YOU, MADAM CHAIR. THIS IS TO PURCHASE EQUIPMENT AND RELATED SERVICES FOR CELLULAR PHONES SUPPLIED TO KEY DISTRICT PERSONNEL. EXISTING DISTRICT CELL PHONES WILL BE REPLACED WITH iPhone 13 AND iPhone 14 MODELS. THE CELLULAR SERVICE INCLUDES 5G UNLIMITED DATA, VOICE AND TEXT ALONG WITH THE ABILITY TO USE THE DEVICE IN AN EMERGENCY AS A WIRELESS HOT SPOT.  

>>Nadia Combs: THANK YOU. I NEED A MOTION AND SECOND TO APPROVE ITEM C 10.01. I HAVE A MOTION BY MEMBER GRAY. I HAVE A SECOND BY MEMBER WASHINGTON. MEMBER VAUGHN, YOU PULLED THIS ITEM, DO YOU HAVE ANY QUESTIONS OR COMMENTS?  

>>Jessica Vaughn: WHERE IS DR. WEEKS? WHEN I ORIGINALLY PULLED IT, I WAS HOPING WE WOULD NEGOTIATE FOR A SMALLER PRICE. PER DR. WEEKS YESTERDAY, SOUNDS LIKE WE'RE GETTING A PHONE UPGRADE AND STILL GOING TO BE LESS EXPENSIVE FOR THE TWO-YEAR CONTRACT. I JUST WANTED TO HIGHLIGHT THAT. THANK YOU.  

>>Nadia Combs: THANK YOU, MEMBER VAUGHN. MEMBER RENDON.  

>>Patti Rendon: YEAH, I KNOW RECENT ARTICLES HAVE COME OUT THAT SOME OF THE CELL PHONES HAVE HAD SOME DIFFICULTIES OVER IN EUROPE WITH THE RADIATION AND THE BUILDING OF THEM. I'M THANKFUL THAT OUR DISTRICT IS LOOKING INTO THAT AND MAKING DECISIONS BASED ON OTHER SITUATIONS WHERE OTHER PEOPLE HAVE GOTTEN IN TROUBLE. EVEN THOUGH IT IS GOING TO BE A LITTLE MORE THAN WE THOUGHT IT WAS GOING TO BE, I THINK TECHNOLOGY IS COSTING US MORE ACROSS THE BOARD IN THIS COUNTRY, BUT I'M GLAD THAT WE'RE LOOKING AT THE SAFETY OF OUR TEACHERS AND OUR ADMINISTRATION AND ALL OF OUR STAFF AS WE'RE LOOKING AT THIS NEW CONTRACT. SO THANK YOU.  

>>Nadia Combs: THANK YOU, MEMBER RENDON. MEMBER GRAY.  

>>Lynn Gray: MEMBER RENDON, YOU JUST BROUGHT UP A POINT AND I WAS CURIOUS, MR. FARKAS OR SUPERINTENDENT AYRES, WHEN WE MENTION SAFETY, WHEN WE HAVE THE UPGRADE AND IT IS AN UPGRADE, AND DR. WEEKS, CERTAINLY YOU MIGHT ANSWER. DOES IT INCLUDE ANY SAFETY FEATURES? I ALWAYS HAVE BEEN SHOCKED WITH THE RECENT BREACH THAT WE HAD WITH OUR CYBERSECURITY. DO YOU HAVE ANY REMARKS ON THAT?  

>>Thomas Weeks: CERTAINLY. MEMBER GRAY, THANKS FOR THAT. YES, WE ARE COGNIZANT OF ALL OF THE CHANGES THAT ALL THE NEWER DEVICES BRING IN TERMS OF INCREASED AND ENHANCED SECURITY WHEN IT COMES TO PROTECTING OUR DATA. WE STILL LOOK AT THE ABILITY FOR US TO RETAIN THAT DATA LOCALLY. WE STILL TRY TO LET PEOPLE KNOW NOT TO MOVE THAT DATA ONTO THEIR MOBILE DEVICES, BUT THERE ARE PROTECTIONS ON THE DEVICES TO HELP US AT LEAST ENSURE FROM THE OPERATING SYSTEMS, BE IT ON THE APPLE IOS OR ON THE ANDROID SYSTEMS THAT HELP US TO EITHER ENCRYPT THE DATA OR TO ENSURE THAT IT'S AT LEAST SECURE.  

>>Lynn Gray: IN YOUR REVIEW AS A PROFESSIONAL WITH THIS TYPE OF AGENDA ITEM, THEN YOU'RE SAYING THAT THIS IS A SAFER CONTRACT OR IT DOES AFFORD MORE SAFETY.  

>>Thomas Weeks: NOTHING IT FOOLPROOF, CORRECT. AS WE GET INTO THE NEWER TECHNOLOGIES, ALL OF THE SOFTWARE AND HARDWARE VENDORS REALLY LOOK AT THE OVERALL DIGITAL SAFETY OF DATA, AND THEY HAVE BEEN INCREASING THEIR OVERALL SECURITY WITH EVERY GENERATION OF THEIR SOFTWARE AND HARDWARE. I CAN SAY TRULY THAT AS WE UPGRADE OUR DEVICES WE ARE LOOKING MORE AND MORE TO ENHANCED SAFETY.  

>>Lynn Gray: THANK YOU.  

>>Thomas Weeks: YOU'RE WELCOME.  

>>Nadia Combs: THANK YOU, BOARD MEMBERS. PLEASE VOTE WHEN YOUR LIGHTS APPEAR. AND IT PASSES UNANIMOUSLY. 11.03, APPROVE THE 2024 HCPS LEGISLATIVE PLATFORM. SUPERINTENDENT AYRES WILL HIGHLIGHT THIS ITEM.  

>>Van Ayres: THANK YOU, MADAM CHAIR. HCPS ADOPTS A LEGISLATIVE PLATFORM EACH YEAR. HAVING AN HCPS SPECIFIC PLATFORM FOCUSES OUR ADVOCACY ON EFFORTS WHERE WE CAN HAVE THE GREATEST IMPACT FOR OUR DISTRICT. THE PLATFORM SUMMARIZES OUR POSITION ON PRIORITY ISSUES, FUNDING REQUESTS AND POLICY. LEGISLATIVE PLATFORM ITEMS WILL BE ASSIGNED TO OUR CONTRACTED LOBBYIST TO PROVIDE A CLEAR OUTLINE OF EXPECTED RESULTS WHICH DEMONSTRATE A RETURN ON THE DISTRICT'S INVESTMENT. AND KRISTIN DAVIS IS HERE AND WILL HAVE A DISCUSSION ON OUR PLATFORM.  

>>Kristin Davis: THANK YOU, MR. AYRES AND BOARD. I THOUGHT I WOULD JUMP IN AND SHARE TWO QUICK ITEMS WITH YOU. I THOUGHT IT WOULD BE IMPORTANT TO HIGHLIGHT THE PROCESS OF THIS PLATFORM AS WELL AS NEXT STEPS. MR. AYRES SHARED SOME OF THAT, BUT IN TERMS OF THE PROCESS, I WANT TO THANK THIS BOARD FOR THEIR INPUT AND THEIR DEDICATION TO THIS OVER THE LAST SIX MONTHS WE STARTED THIS I'D SAY PROBABLY RIGHT AFTER THE LEGISLATIVE SESSION ENDED. SO IN APRIL. SO OVER THE SUMMER I KNOW MANY OF YOU HAVE BEEN WORKING WITH YOUR CONSTITUENTS. WE'VE WORKED WITH OUR CONTRACTED LOBBYIST AND TO PUT TOGETHER SOME PRETTY GOOD PROPOSALS THAT YOU SEE BEFORE YOU. THERE ARE TEN ITEMS. WE CAME TOGETHER WITH, I'D SAY, 12 SOLID ITEMS. YOU RANKED THEM. WE HAVE THE RANKINGS TO BE ABLE TO FOCUS ON OUR PRIORITIES WHEN WE HAVE TO PLAY OFFENSE AND DEFENSE THIS SESSION. WE WERE ABLE TO KIND OF WORK THROUGH WITH THE 12 TO BRING THEM TO 10 AND THOSE ARE THE ONES THAT ARE BEFORE YOU. NEXT STEPS, WE WILL PUT TOGETHER A ONE-PAGER THAT DOES NOT HAVE "DRAFT" ON IT AND THAT ALIGNS WITH THE FOUR PILLARS OF THE STRATEGIC PLAN, GET YOU COPIES OF THOSE SO WHEN YOU GO OUT TO MEETINGS YOU CAN TAKE THOSE WITH YOU. YOU CAN SHARE THEM. AND ALSO, AS MR. AYRES SHARED, TO ASSIGN THESE TO OUR CONTRACTED LOBBYISTS TO BEGIN WORKING ON THESE TOMORROW MORNING. THAT IS PROBABLY A QUICK UPDATE.  

>>Nadia Combs: THANK YOU, MS. DAVIS. THANK YOU FOR THAT AND THANK YOU FOR EVERYTHING THAT YOU DO. I NEED A MOTION AND A SECOND TO APPROVE ITEM C 11.03. I HAVE A MOTION BY MEMBER GRAY. I HAVE A SECOND BY MEMBER VAUGHN. MEMBER GRAY, MEMBER VAUGHN, AND MYSELF, WE ALL PULLED THIS ITEM. I'LL START WITH MEMBER GRAY.  

>>Lynn Gray: FIRST, I WANT TO THANK OUR GOVERNMENT RELATIONS. I KNOW YOU HAVE A NEW TITLE. KRISTIN DAVIS, YOU'VE DONE A WONDERFUL COMPREHENSIVE JOB AND HAVE BEEN EACH YEAR BUILDING ON THOSE RELATIONSHIPS WITH BOTH OUR STATE REPRESENTATIVES LOCAL DELEGATION AND OUR SENATORS. I WANT TO ALSO EXPRESS GRATITUDE TO THE SCHUMAKER, OUR LOBBYISTS, SCHUMAKER AND ASSOCIATES AND GrayRobinson. THIS IS THE AGE WHEN -- WELL, I THINK MAYBE EVEN FOUR, FIVE YEARS AGO, WE DIDN'T HAVE INTERCONNECTIVITY AS MUCH WITH THE SENATORS AND THE REPRESENTATIVES. WE WERE HANDED DOWN CERTAIN MEASURES AND THEN WE ACTED ON THEM. NOW WE HAVE A COMPLETE STAFF WORKING THROUGH EVERY BIT OF THE NEW FLORIDA STATUTES. EVERY BOARD MEMBER HERE IS HIGHLY TRAINED NOW TO REALLY LOOK CLOSELY AT THE NEW -- AND I'LL JUST SAY THE WORD AGAIN, FLORIDA STATUTES. AND IT'S SO CRITICAL THAT OUR CURRICULUM, EVERYTHING IS INVOLVED IN TERMS OF LEGISLATION. AND WE ALL HAVE TO BE -- WELL, WE'LL BE IN TALLAHASSEE IN THE FIRST WEEK OF -- SECOND WEEK OF NOVEMBER, BUT, KRISTIN, YOU HAVE MARVELED ALL OF US WITH THE ENGAGEMENT. QUITE FRANKLY, THE RELATIONSHIP BUILDING IN EVERY ONE OF THESE BOARD MEMBERS THEY DO SUCH A WONDERFUL JOB. JUST RECENTLY WITH THE SOCIAL MEDIA, THE CELL PHONE, I WAS ON THE PHONE WITH SENATOR BURGESS AND SENATOR COLLINS, AND THEY ARE GOING TO TAKE OUR PROPOSED SOCIAL MEDIA POLICY OR THE WIRELESS ONE AND THEY ARE GOING TO ALSO HELP WORDSMITH. BUT THOSE ARE THE RELATIONSHIPS THAT WE'RE TALKING ABOUT THAT ACTUALLY CAN BE USED TO ASSIST US IN A MORE POWERFUL WAY. SO I'M JUST SAYING THAT THESE RELATIONSHIPS AND THE LEGISLATION THAT'S COMING OUT, WE DO HAVE TO HAVE THAT BALANCE WHERE WE WORK TOGETHER AND HELP THEM CRAFT WHAT IS RELEVANT TO TEACHING AND LEARNING. AND THE SAFETY OF OUR STUDENTS. SO THAT'S ALL I WANTED TO SAY. THANK YOU.  

>>Nadia Combs: THANK YOU, MEMBER GRAY. MEMBER VAUGHN.  

>>Jessica Vaughn: THANK YOU. WELL, FIRST OF ALL, I WANT TO ALSO SAY THANK YOU TO MS. DAVIS WHO WORKS SO HARD. I DEFINITELY AGREE THAT FROM THE PREVIOUS ENGAGEMENT THAT AT LEAST I SAW PUBLICLY FROM THE BOARD AND NOW THE CONVERSATIONS THAT WE HAVE ABOUT LEGISLATION ARE SO IMPORTANT. I REALLY WANT TO APPRECIATE OR SAY THANK YOU TO ANY OF THE LEGISLATORS WHO CARRY ANY OF THESE BILLS OR ACTUALLY ADVOCATE FOR THEM. I THINK A LOT OF PEOPLE DON'T UNDERSTAND THE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN SCHOOL BOARDS AND STATES AND HOW WE ARE GUIDED BY THE STATUTES. OTHER MUNICIPALITIES ARE GUIDED BY A CHARTER OR OTHER DOCUMENTS, BUT OUR RELATIONSHIP WITH THE STATE IS SO IMPORTANT. AND ALSO I THINK IT HELPS WHEN THEY SEE US CRAFTING A PLATFORM OR WHEN YOU TAKE US TO TALLAHASSEE AND WE SHARE THAT, THAT THEY CAN ADVOCATE AS WELL, BECAUSE, AGAIN, ONE OF THE THINGS THAT I HEARD WHEN I WENT TO THE STATE WAS THAT THEY DON'T FEEL AS IF THEY NECESSARILY GET THE SAME ENGAGEMENT THAT WE GET AT THE LOCAL LEVEL HERE WITH PEOPLE SPEAKING TO THE ISSUES. I REALLY HOPE THAT THROUGH THIS AND THROUGH YOUR WORK AND THROUGH OUR RELATIONSHIP IT ALSO ENCOURAGES EVERYONE HERE IN THE AUDIENCE OR EVERYONE AT HOME WHO IS LISTENING TO REALLY ENGAGE WITH THEIR LEGISLATORS AS WELL AND BUILD THAT RELATIONSHIP WITH THEM JUST LIKE THEY DO AND COME TO SCHOOL BOARD MEETINGS AT THE LOCAL LEVEL SO THAT THE ENTIRE, EVERYONE WHO MAKES LAWS FOR THE STATE CAN HEAR THE SAME THING WE DO. AGAIN, THANK YOU FOR YOUR HARD WORK. I KNOW IT'S PROBABLY NOT EASY. TRYING TO GET SEVEN DIFFERENT BOARD MEMBERS TO AGREE ON A PLATFORM AND YOU DO IT ALWAYS SO THOROUGHLY AND WITH SO MUCH PATIENCE AND VERY KINDLY AND YOU REALLY WORK HARD. SO THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR EVERYTHING THAT YOU DO.  

>>Nadia Combs: THANK YOU, MEMBER VAUGHN. MEMBER RENDON.  

>>Patti Rendon: YES. THANK YOU, MEMBER GRAY AND MEMBER VAUGHN. I WANT TO ECHO THE SENTIMENTS TO MS. DAVIS FOR EVERYTHING THAT SHE CONSTANTLY DOES RALLYING ALL SEVEN OF US FOR ITEMS THAT EVERYONE AGREES ON IS ALWAYS A CHORE. BUT I THINK MEMBER VAUGHN PUT IT VERY WELL. WE ARE GUIDED BY STATUTE. AND SO BEING AN ACTIVE PARTICIPANT IN THE PROCESS IS VERY -- IS CRITICALLY IMPORTANT. AND IF THOSE OF YOU THAT ARE LOOKING AT OUR PLATFORM RIGHT NOW CAN RECOGNIZE THAT WE ARE PRIORITIZING OUR STAFF, OUR TEACHERS, OUR BUS DRIVERS, OUR STUDENTS, WE ARE PRIORITIZING WHAT IS VALUABLE AND WHAT IS NECESSARY FOR THIS DISTRICT. SO I THANK YOU FOR WORKING WITH US TO PUT THAT TOGETHER. AGAIN, HELPING US COLLABORATE WITH ALL OF OUR LOCAL OFFICIALS, ALL OF OUR OFFICIALS WITHIN THE STATE, LETTING THEM KNOW WHAT THE PRIORITY IS FOR HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY SO THAT THEY CAN WORK WITH US TO BE ADVOCATES, WHETHER IT'S ALLOCATIONS, WHETHER IT'S BILLS, WHETHER IT'S STATUTES THAT WE ARE GOING TO HAVE TO THEN FOLLOW THAT OUR RELATIONSHIP WITH THEM AND THEIR DISTRICT'S RELATIONSHIP WITH THOSE GOVERNMENT OFFICIALS ARE SO CRITICAL FOR THE SUCCESS HERE IN THIS DISTRICT. SO THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR YOUR TIRELESS AND HARD WORK IN KEEPING US ALWAYS ABREAST OF WHAT'S HAPPENING IN TALLAHASSEE. ALSO WANT TO TAKE A MINUTE TO RECOGNIZE THE FACT THAT THIS DOESN'T JUST HAPPEN OVERNIGHT. YOU KNOW, WE ALL TRY VERY HARD TO GET THIS GOING EARLIER, AND I THINK WE ALWAYS MAKE THAT EFFORT TO DO THAT. AND THERE WAS SO MUCH LEGISLATION THIS LAST YEAR THAT WE KIND OF GOT A LITTLE FURTHER BACK THAN WE WOULD LIKE. I THINK HOPEFULLY WE'LL HAVE A LITTLE QUIETER YEAR TO GET THIS MOVING EVEN QUICKER SO WE CAN GET IT MOVING. BUT THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR EVERYTHING YOU DO AND THE WORK THAT YOU DO AND AS WELL AS OUR LOBBYISTS. THEY DO A HUGE JOB WORKING WITH EACH ONE OF US TO MAKE SURE THAT THIS PLATFORM GETS IN FRONT OF THOSE PEOPLE THAT NEED TO SO THAT THEY CAN MAKE -- WE CAN MAKE A DIFFERENCE HERE IN HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY FOR OUR TEACHERS, OUR STUDENTS AND ALL OF OUR FACULTY. SO THANK YOU SO MUCH.  

>>Nadia Combs: THANK YOU, MEMBER RENDON. MEMBER WASHINGTON.  

>>Henry "Shake" Washington: THANK YOU, MADAM CHAIR. I ALSO WANT TO ECHO WHAT MS. GRAY AND MS. VAUGHN AND MS. RENDON SAID. KRISTIN, THANK YOU FOR THE RELATIONSHIP YOU HAVE BUILT WITH THE LEGISLATORS AND THE SCHOOL BOARD BECAUSE I REALLY FEEL COMFORTABLE WHEN I GO THERE NOW. AT TIMES BEFORE IT WAS VERY DIFFICULT. I WASN'T A BOARD MEMBER, BUT I HAD SOME ADVICE FOR SOME PEOPLE, INFORMATION THAT VERY DIFFICULT TO DEAL WITH THE LEGISLATURE. AND YOU MADE IT A GREAT WORKING RELATIONSHIP AND I REALLY APPRECIATE THAT. BECAUSE WHEN YOU BUILD RELATIONSHIPS, THEN YOU BUILD CONNECTIONS AND YOU HAVE TRULY BUILT CONNECTION BETWEEN THE BOARD AND THE LEGISLATURE. I JUST WANT TO GIVE YOU SOME KUDOS. THANK YOU FOR THE GREAT JOB YOU HAVE DONE.  

>>Nadia Combs: THANK YOU, MEMBER WASHINGTON. MEMBER PEREZ.  

>>Karen Perez: IT'S TRUE. YOU'VE DONE AN AMAZING JOB. WHEN WE GET UP TO TALLAHASSEE, IT'S ORGANIZED. YOU HAVE OUR MEETINGS ALREADY SCHEDULED, AND WE HAVE CONVERSATIONS. DELIBERATE CONVERSATIONS WITH OUR LEGISLATORS, AND IT LOOKS LIKE WE'RE MOVING THE NEEDLE FORWARD. NOW UP THERE IN TALLAHASSEE. SO I JUST WANT TO SAY THAT I APPRECIATE IT, ESPECIALLY FOR THE PLATFORM WITH THE DRUM THAT I'VE BEEN BEATING ALL THIS TIME AND THE MENTAL HEALTH ARENA. I SEE THAT WE'RE RECEIVING FUNDING HERE IN HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY. I DON'T KNOW ANYWHERE ELSE BUT I KNOW HERE IN HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY. SO I WANT TO THANK YOU FOR THAT AND ALL YOU DO AND CONTINUE TO DO FOR US.  

>>Nadia Combs: THANK YOU, MEMBER PEREZ. I ALSO WANTED TO ECHO THE SAME SENTIMENTS. EVEN TODAY I ASKED TO ORGANIZE A MEETING WITH THE STATE REPRESENTATIVE, AND YOU WERE ABLE TO DO THAT. THAT IS A BIG PART OF OUR JOB OF BEING ABLE TO WORK ACROSS THE AISLE NO MATTER WHAT AND MAKE SURE THAT OUR VOICES ARE HEARD AND THAT WE DO HAVE A SEAT AT THE TABLE. AND I THINK THESE ARE REALLY WONDERFUL, BUT I WOULD BE REMISS NOT TO SAY THAT WHEN I LOOK AT THE BASE STUDENT ALLOCATION OF 5% AND $260, WHEN WE HAVE THE HIGHEST RATE OF INFLATION ALMOST IN THE UNITED STATES HERE AND WHEN YOU LOOK AT A PER-PUPIL ALLOCATION COMPARED TO THE REST OF THE UNITED STATES, WE STILL HAVE A VERY LONG WAY TO GO. LOOKING AT 5%, $260. I MEAN, WHEN YOU LOOK AT ALMOST EVERY AGENDA ITEM COMING THROUGH AND THE INCREASE OF FUNDING, I THINK IT WAS ALMOST 35% MORE INCREASE TO EVEN BUILD A SCHOOL, ANY CONTRACT THAT IS COMING BEFORE US IS MUCH HIGHER THAN A 5% INCREASE AND I THINK IT'S IMPORTANT TO REMIND PEOPLE THAT WE NEED TO MAKE SURE THAT WE CONTINUE FUNDING EDUCATION AND ALSO WITH EARLY EDUCATION SPECIFICALLY WHEN YOU LOOK AT THE DISMAL AMOUNT THAT'S GIVEN, IT'S VERY IMPORTANT THAT PEOPLE ARE AWARE OF THAT AND WE CONTINUE TALKING ABOUT THE NEED TO FUND OUR SCHOOLS REGARDLESS -- AND I SAID THIS THE OTHER DAY -- I AM ALL ABOUT PARENT CHOICE, BUT FIND ME SOME SCHOOLS WHERE YOU CAN GET LESS THAN $9,000. WHAT'S HAPPENING IS MOST OF THESE SCHOOLS, TUITION IS GOING UP. SO REALLY, WE NEED TO REALLY LOOK AT, WE NEED TO FUND OVERALL EVERY SINGLE CHILD REGARDLESS OF WHAT PARENTS CHOOSE BECAUSE IT IS VERY EXPENSIVE TO LIVE HERE IN FLORIDA, UNLIKE IT WAS 20 YEARS AGO, AND WE NEED TO CONTINUE TALKING ABOUT THAT AT THE FOREFRONT. THANK YOU. MEMBER HAHN.  

>>Stacy Hahn: THANK YOU. KRISTIN, AS ALWAYS, IT IS A PLEASURE TO WORK WITH YOU AROUND THIS. IT'S REALLY IN THE YEARS I'VE BEEN ON THE BOARD, THE LAST COUPLE, WITH YOU AT THE HELM OF THAT DIVISION, IT'S REALLY STREAMLINED AND BECOME REALLY A TIGHT WELL-RUN DIVISION. SO THANK YOU. JUST CURIOSITY. ARE WE GOING AFTER ANY APPROPRIATIONS DOLLARS IN ADDITION TO WHAT'S ON THIS PLATFORM?  

>>Kristin Davis: YES, MA'AM. WE ARE LOOKING AT PROBABLY DOING ONE WITH WORKFORCE. ALSO, SOME FUNDING OF CYBERSECURITY. AND FROM THERE, WE ARE ALREADY TODAY WITH MR. AYRES HAVING CONVERSATIONS AROUND EARLY LEARNING, VPK. SO WITH OUR PARTNERS AT THE EARLY LEARNING COALITION, EVEN SOME GREAT CONVERSATIONS WITH DEMITRA SIMMONS AND THE TAMPA BAY PARTNERSHIP THERE, THE PRIORITIES THAT MR. AYRES HAS LAID OUT ACTUALLY ALIGN QUITE WELL WITH OTHER PRIORITIES THERE OUR PARTNERS. SO WE NEED TO CAPITALIZE THAT AND BRING IN THE  

>> THAT'S GREAT. I APPRECIATE THAT INFORMATION. I KNOW WE ALSO HAVE A NEW SPEAKER OF THE HOUSE.  

>>Kristin Davis: SO PEREZ WILL BE EFFECTIVE --  

>> NOVEMBER 26th, CORRECT. LOTS OF NEW STUFF HAPPENING. THANK YOU GOOD EVENING FOR ALL THE WORK YOU DID AROUND THIS AND WE LOOK FORWARD TO ALL THE UPDATES YOU ARE GOING TO PROVIDE US. WE WERE VERY GOOD ABOUT THAT. ALSO LOOK AT THOSE TEXT MESS APPLES AND UPDATES DURING SESSION. SO I KNOW IT'S A LOT OF WORK COMING YOUR WAY IN THE NEXT FEW MONTHS. THANKS SO MUCH.  

>>Nadia Combs: BOARD MEMBERS, PLEASE VOTE WHEN YOUR LIGHTS APPEAR. AND IT PASSES UNANIMOUSLY. 11 MONTE 05. THE SETTLEMENT OFFER FOR GOVERNMENT ENTITY CLAIMS AGAINST ALTRIA. JIM POVERTIER THE SCHOOL BOARD ATTORNEY WILL HIGHLIGHT THIS ITEM.  

>>Jim Porter: SEVERAL YEARS AGO THE BOARD AUTHORIZED JOINING IN A LAWSUIT THAT DEALT WITH AGAINST JEWEL. WE BROUGHT BACK THE SETTLEMENT FROM OF THAT WHICH WAS EFFECTIVELY $10 MILLION THAT WILL BE COMING TO HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY SCHOOL DISTRICT. THIS LAWSUIT DIDN'T COST THE DISTRICT ANYTHING. THE LAW FIRM WORKED ON A CONTINGENCY BASIS. THIS PIECE WAS THE LAST FINAL COMPANY THAT HAD NOT BEEN PART OF THAT LARGER SETTLEMENT ALTIRA SO NOW THEY HAVE SETTLED SO THE DISTRICT WILL BE RECEIVING APPROXIMATELY $33rd MILLION SOMETIME IN EARLY 24. SO WE JUST NEED FOR APPROVAL FOR THAT. AGAIN THIS COST THE DISTRICT ABSOLUTELY NOTHING. IT WAS DONE ON CONTINGENCY FEE, IN ADDITION TO THE 10 MILLION ALREADY A FLUFFED PROVED.  

>>Nadia Combs: THANK YOU, MR. PORTER. I NEED A MOTION AND SECOND TO APPROVE C-11.05. MOTION BY MEMBER WASHINGTON, SECOND BY MEMBER PEREZ. MEMBER GRAY AND I PULLED THIS ITEM. WE'LL STARTLE WITH YOU, MEMBER GRAY.  

>>Lynn Gray: I DON'T HAVE ANY QUESTIONS. I'M GLAD THAT THIS MOVE HAS BEEN MADE. AND THANK YOU, MR. PORTER, AND JEFF GIBSON, BECAUSE THE IDEA OF SOCIAL MEDIA -- THAT'S THE NEXT ITEM? OH, THIS IS THE JULE ONE? THANK YOU FOR THAT, TOO. SO I HAVE NO FURTHER COMMENT ON THAT. I WILL WAIT TILL THE NEXT ONE.  

>>Nadia Combs: AND I PULLED THIS ITEM JUST TO MAKE PEOPLE AWARE OF WHAT WE'LL GET AND WHAT THAT WILL LOOK LIKE. BUT THANK YOU SO MUCH. BOARD MEMBERS, PLEASE VOTE WHEN YOUR LIGHTS APPEAR. AND THAT PASSES UNANIMOUSLY. 11.06 WHICH IS THE REQUESTED APPROVAL FOR JOINING THE NATIONAL SOCIAL MEDIA SCHOOL DISTRICT LITIGATION PRESENTED BY ROD WAGSTAFF AND CARTMEL.  

>>Jim Porter: THIS IS A SIMILAR SITUATION WHERE A NUMBER OF SCHOOL DISTRICTS THROUGHOUT THE COUNTRY INCLUDING ROUGHLY 25 IN FLORIDA HAVE JOINED IN A LAWSUIT AGAINST THE MAJOR SOCIAL MEDIA PLATFORM TO ADDRESS THE HARM THAT'S BEEN DONE TO OUR STUDENTS THROUGH OVERACTIVE USE OF SOCIAL MEDIA PLATFORM. IT'S A VERY SIMILAR SITUATION WHERE THERE'S NO COST TO THE DISTRICT TO PARTICIPATE. WE WOULD BE ONE OF MANY SCHOOL DISTRICTS, AND IF THE LITIGATION IS SUCCESSFUL, WE WILL RECEIVE A PORTION OF WHATEVER FUNDS THAT RESULT IN THE SETTLEMENT BASED ON A FORMULA BASED ON THE STUDENTS AND THE SIZE OF THE DISTRICT. SO WE ARE ASKING YOUR PERMISSION TO JOIN IN THE LITIGATION, AND AGAIN IT WOULD BE A VERY SIMILAR SITUATION FOR THE JULE LITIGATION THAT YOU JUST DISCUSSED.  

>>Nadia Combs: THANK YOU, MR. PORTER. I NEED A MOTION AND SECOND TO APPROVE C-11.06. I HAVE A MOTION BY MEMBER PEREZ, SECOND BY MEMBER WASHINGTON. MEMBER GRAY AND I PULLED THIS. MEMBER GRAY.  

>>Lynn Gray: OKAY, NOW IT'S MY TURN. I WANTED TO MAKE THE REMARKS THAT THIS IS JUST SO CRITICAL, AND HOW TIMELY BECAUSE OUR BOARD RIGHT NOW IS PROPOSING A WIRELESS UPDATE, IF YOU WILL, ON SOCIAL MEDIA. THE CELL PHONES, IF YOU ARE A TEACHER, HOW DO THE KIDS FOCUS, ACADEMICALLY IT IS PAYING A HEAVY DUTY PRICE. SOCIAL EMOTIONALLY, WITH THE LGBT, I KNOW SPOKE ABOUT BULLYING, THERE IS SO MANY ASPECTS THAT STUDENTS ARE GETTING THAT PHONE AND ARE NOW HARBORING NOT ONLY PORNOGRAPHER SITES, THEY ARE HARBORING POSSIBLE ORGANIZED FIGHTING OFF OF SCHOOL GROUNDS, ALL THIS IS TO SAY IF A STUDENT IS USING THAT CELL PHONE DURING A -- RIGHT BEFORE A FEST, FOR EXAMPLE, HOW DO THEY FOCUS? HOW DO THEY COME TO SCHOOL IF THEY ARE DREADING A FACEBOOK POST THAT HAS PROBABLY A LITTLE BIT MORE OF AN ATTITUDE AGAINST THEM? TEENAGERS -- AND WE ALL WERE ONE EMOTIONAL. EVERY FIVE MINUTES IN A TEENAGER'S LIFE WITH CUT THEM YAY OR NAY PERHAPS INTO A GUIDANCE COUNSELOR'S OFFICE BECAUSE OF AN UPSET. AND THIS IS SO MUCH GOING ON WITH OUR PHONE. I WANTED TO READ HERE, WHO IS RESPONSIBLE? BECAUSE I THINK THAT RATIONALE, AND I THINK I HAVE A MINUTE OR TWO, OF WHY, MR. PORTER, WE ARE JOINING IN WITH -- HOW MANY DISTRICTS, 26?  

>>Jim Porter: AS OF THIS MORNING 25. WE WILL BE 26.  

>>Lynn Gray: SO 26 OTHER DISTRICTS. SO HERE IT IS, OUR NATION'S YOUTH HAVE BECOME ADDICTED TO SOCIAL MEDIA RESULTING IN A MENTAL HEALTH CRISIS. NOW WHAT DOES A CRISIS MEAN? WHAT DOES IT HAVE TO DO WITH OUR STUDENTS? THEY ARE USING TikTok, SNAPCHAT, FACEBOOK, YOUTUBE, INSTAGRAM, COMPETING FORCES WHILE A TEACHER OR A FRIEND IS TRYING TO HAVE A CONVERSATION. MEANWHILE, MANY OF THE AGE VERIFICATION, PARDON ME, I AM READING FROM THIS, INSUFFICIENT PARENTAL CONTROLS, ENDLESS CONTROLLING, CONSTANT NOTIFICATIONS, TARGETED ALGORITHMS HAVE BEEN DESIGNED TO ADDICT TEEN AND ADOLESCENT USERS. THESE COMPANIES ARE FUELED BY THEIR OWN GREED AND HAVE PUT PROFITS OVER THE SAFETY OF OUR YOUTH. SO, I MEAN, THERE'S A LOT MORE PAGES TO THIS, AND I KNOW, BOARD MEMBERS, I WELCOME, WE ALL WELCOME YOUR COMMENTS. BUT IT IS A VERY URGENT CONCERN FOR THOSE REASONS. THANK YOU, MADAM CHAIR. AND I THINK THAT BOARD MEMBERS WILL HAVE COMMENTS AS WELL. THANK YOU.  

>>Nadia Combs: THANK YOU, MEMBER GRAY. AND I PULLED FOR THE SAME REASON, JUST SO THAT WAY THE COMMUNITY AND EVERYBODY KNOWS ABOUT THIS, SO I APPRECIATE YOU WORKING ON THIS. I THINK REALLY VERY IMPORTANT. THANK YOU. BOARD MEMBERS, PLEASE VOTE WHEN YOUR LIGHTS APPEAR. AND IT PASSES UNANIMOUSLY. WE WILL NOW MOVE TO SUPERINTENDENT COMMENTS.  

>>VAN AYRES: THANK YOU, MADAM CHAIR. WE ARE TRYING TO MOVE THIS. THE MEETING WAS MOVING QUICKLY. THERE WE GO. SO I JUST WANTED TO FIRST HIGHLIGHT 9-11 HEROES DAY, HOUSE BILL 1327 FROM THE LEGISLATIVE SESSION, THIS SCHOOL YEAR, MIDDLE SCHOOL AND HIGH SCHOOL STUDENTS ENROLLED IN CIVICS OR U.S. GOVERNMENTAL CLASS RECEIVE INSTRUCTION ON 911 HEROES DAY INVOLVING A HISTORIES AND SIGNIFICANT OF SEPTEMBER 112, 2001, IN ADDITION TO CLASSROOM INSTRUCTIONS, THOSE WHO LOST THEIR LIVES ON THAT DAY, AND I BROUGHT FROM PHOTOS FROM A FEW OF OUR SCHOOLS REMEMBRANCE EVENTS. WORLD MENTAL HEALTH DAY, IT'S COMING UP BEFORE OUR NEXT BOARD MEETING OCTOBER 10th, ORGANIZED BY THE WORLD FEDERATION FOR MENTAL HEALTH. THIS YEAR'S THEME IS MENTAL HEALTH IS A UNIVERSAL HUMAN RIGHT FOR THE 22-23 SCHOOL YEAR, MENTAL HEALTH STAFF, SCREENED AND ASSISTED STUDENTS AND FAMILIES WITH OWN TANK MENTAL DIRECT HEALTH SERVICES TO OVER 150,000 STUDENTS. HPS WILL PROMOTE MENTAL HEALTH AWARENESS BY SCHOOLS ON MARQUEES AND ENCOURAGING STUDENT LED ACTIVITY, WALL ART AND SIDEWALK DISPLAYS PROMOTING KINDNESS, MINDFULNESS AND STATISTICS AND INFORMATION. I KNEW WHEN DR. SCHATZBERG WAS HERE I HAD TO HAVE A BENEFITS UPDATE, SO THAT DID START TODAY SO I WANTED TO MAKE SURE ALL OF OUR IMPLORE YOU HE IS KNOW THAT'S OUR ANNUAL ENROLLMENT STARTS TODAY, AND OUR HEALTH FAIR STARTS THIS SATURDAY AND THAT WILL BE AT JEFFERSON FROM 9 TILL 1. WITH THE SUPPORT OF ORGANIZATIONAL CULTURE JUST A COUPLE OF ITEMS HERE. JUST A PHOTO. OUR PRINCIPALS WILL STEP IN WHENEVER IS NEEDED. REBECCA IS AGABLE WITH ME AT LUNCH TIME STEPPED IN TO PREPARE THE SALADS FOR HER STUDENTS AND ACROSS THE DISTRICT SCHOOLS HAVE BEEN TAKING PART IN GRANDPARENTS DAYS CELEBRATION WAS BREAKFAST, GOT A CHANCE TO EAST A BREAKFAST WITH OUR S AND S TEAM OVER THE PAST WEEK. WE HAVE PICTURES THERE FROM EPILITO WAND ELK GROVE. WE HAD OUR PROCLAMATION. I'LL START WITH HELLO WEEK. I WILL START WITH HELLO WEEK. IT JUST STARTED YESTERDAY. THE EXCELLENCE, SCHOOLS OF AMERICA RECENTLY NAMED 31 NATIONALLY CERTIFIED SCHOOLS AND 33 NATIONALLY CERTIFIED DEMONSTRATION SCHOOLS AND I WANTED TO MAKE SURE THAT WE ARE AWARE THAT TWO OF OUR VERY OWN SCHOOLS, LINCOLN WAS A NATIONAL CERTIFIED MAGNET SCHOOL THIS YEAR AND SHORE ELEMENTARY WAS A NATIONALLY CERTIFIED DEMONSTRATION SCHOOL. SO CONGRATULATIONS TO THOSE TWO SCHOOLS. FOUR OF OUR STUDENTS ALSO RECENTLY ATTENDED THE TENTH ANNUAL MEETING, THE NORTH AMERICAN SECTION OF THE INTERNATIONAL ACADEMY OF CARDIOVASCULAR SCIENCES AND PICTURED HERE IS NIDAGUDLA ON THE INTERVENTIONAL INTERVENTION TO IMPROVE IN MINORITY POPULATIONS. JUST TODAY AS WELL IT WAS AN EXTRA YARD FOR TEACHER EVENTS SO THAT WAS JUST THIS MORNING. SO WE HAD NICOLETTE BARONE AND NICK PONTE FROM DURANTE, GOT A CHECK FROM THE ATHLETES BOWL, AND EXTRA YARD FOR TEACHERS, SUPPORTS EDUCATORS WHO ARE GOING TO GO THE EXTRA YARD FOR THIS AT THE SCHOOL SO THAT WAS JUST THIS MORNING AT OAK PARK AND AT PLANT. AND I DID HAVE ONE SPECIAL ANNOUNCEMENT. I WANTED TO ACKNOWLEDGE OUR NEW CHIEF HUMAN RESOURCES OFFICER, DR. SEAN PATTEN, THE 25th, AN EXPERIENCED LEADER WITH OVER 15 YEARS OF HR EXPERIENCE. SHE MOVED TO THE TAMPA AREA IN 2021 AND PREVIOUSLY LIVED IN CALIFORNIA. SHE HAS SERVED IN VARIOUS CORPORATE AND NONPROFIT ARENAS AND WE ARE VERY EXCITED TO HAVE THE SKILL LEVEL OF DR. PATTON. SO THANK YOU. [ APPLAUSE ] AND OUR ENTIRE HR TEAM GOT YOUR BACK LITERALLY, RIGHT? THERE THEY ARE. ALL OF THEM. SO AS WE CONTINUE, WE HEARD SOME OF OUR PUBLIC COMMENT TODAY ABOUT A NEW PRE-K-8 SCHOOLS, JUST SOME UPDATES ON THAT. WE ARE LOOKING FOR THE COMMUNITY'S HELP AND SUGGESTING A NAME FOR OUR NEW PRE-K SCHOOL COMING TO SOUTH TAMPA. NAME SUGGESTIONS ARE DUE FRIDAY OCTOBER 6th SO JUST WANT TO MAKE SURE THAT EVERYONE IS AWARE OF THAT. SUSPENDED AGENDA UPDATE, WE DO HAVE ONE DATE ON SUSPENDED AGENDA ON THE TASK FORCE. SO CHIEF OWEN YOUNG, PLEASE.  

>> THANK YOU. IT'S BEEN A COUPLE WEEKS SINCE WE HAD AN OPPORTUNITY TO SHARE OUT, BUT I WILL TELL YOU THE TASK FORCE IS DILIGENTLY WORKING TOWARD ACHIEVING THE SCHOOL SUPPORTING THE WEST TAMPA COMMUNITY AND JUST ELEMENTARY. PRIOR TO OUR LAST MEETING, THERE WAS A REQUEST FOR SUPTERINTENDENT AYRES TO COME, AND I WILL TELL YOU, HE CAME AND HE REALLY HELPED ESTABLISH HIS VISION AND EXPECTATION FOR THE TASK FORCE IN THEIR ROLE, IN THEIR WORK. AND I JUST WANT TO PERSONALLY THANK YOU, SUPERINTENDENT AVES, BECAUSE I RECEIVED A LOT OF CALLS FOLLOWING THE MEETING JUST THANKFUL FOR YOU COMING IN AND ESTABLISHING AND CONFIRMING AN INTERIM WHAT THAT SCHOOL SHOULD BE AND WHAT THE TASK FORCE ORDERS WERE COME FROM YOU. SO I WANTED TO TAKE AN OPPORTUNITY TO HIGHLIGHT THAT. SUPERINTENDENT EQUALLY TALKED A LITTLE BIT ABOUT THE TIMELINE FOR MAKING THE DECISION ABOUT JUST. AND WE ADDRESSED SOME OF THE BUDGET. AS A RESULT, ON THE MEETING FOR TODAY, THIS MORNING, WE ANTICIPATED TAMPA HOUSING AUTHORITY PRESENTING TO THE TASK FORCE. HOWEVER, THE HOUSING AUTHORITY IS CURRENTLY UP IN WASHINGTON, D.C. AT THE CONGRESSIONAL BLACK CAUCUS WEEKEND. SO GRACEFULLY, I WANT TO TAKE ANOTHER OPPORTUNITY TO THANK MR. FARKAS WHO CAME AND DELIVERED INFORMATION ON THE WEST TAMPA DEVELOPMENT PROJECTS, AND I WILL SAY THAT THE INFORMATION HE SHARED WAS INVALUABLE TO THE TASK FORCE. IT REALLY HELPED THE TASK FORCE TO BREAK DOWN INTO SUBCOMMITTEES, TO HAVE MORE CLARITY AND UNDERSTANDING OF WHAT'S AHEAD OF US. AND I THINK BOTH VISITS FROM MR. AYRES AND MR. FARKAS HELPED TO MOVE THE TASK FORCE FORWARD IMMENSELY. THE LAST PIECE AROUND TRANSPARENCY, WE SHARED WITH YOU IN THE BEGINNING THAT WE WERE GOING TO PAY ATTENTION TO EACH AND EVERY ONE OF OUR CHILDREN TO TRANSITION FROM JUST. MY DIVISION, WE CALLED THE SCHOOLS PERIODICALLY JUST TO LOOK AT THE NUMBERS. RIGHT NOW THE NUMBERS ARE SUSTAINING. WE HAVE ONE SCHOOL THAT WE HAVE A LITTLE BIT OF CONCERN. WE SAW A LITTLE DIP IN THE ENROLLMENT NUMBERS FROM KIDS WHO WENT TO THAT PARTICULAR SCHOOL. SO AS A RESULT, OUR DEPARTMENT IS MONITORING, WE ARE CALLING EACH AND HE HAVE FAMILY. THEY MIGHT HAVE MOVED SOMEWHERE ELSE IN THE DISTRICT AND MIGHT BE ATTENDING ANOTHER SCHOOL. BUT I JUST WANTED TO SHARE THE SPECIFICITY AND KEEP IT IN THE FOREFRONT, THAT WE ARE MONITORING AND MAKING SURE THAT THERE'S A SENSITIVITY AND ENGAGEMENT WITH FAMILIES, AND IF THEIR TRANSITION IS SOMETHING THAT'S PART OF A BARRIER THAT EXISTS BECAUSE THEY LEFT JUST ELEMENTARY, AS A CABINET, I WILL BRING IT TO THE CABINET SO WE ARE PART OF MAYBE COMING TO SOME THOSE FAMILIES TO MAKE SURE THAT WE DON'T HAVE ANY OTHER FAMILIES, IF IT IS TRULY A BARRIER. I JUST WANT TO TAKE A MINUTE TO SHARE THAT INFORMATION WITH YOU AND ANSWER ANY QUESTIONS THAT YOU HAVE.  

>>Nadia Combs: MEMBER VAUGHN?  

>>Jessica Vaughn: THANK YOU. WHAT SCHOOL DID YOU SEE A DROP IN ENROLLMENT?  

>> RIGHT NOW IT'S LOCKHART ELEMENTARY. AND I THINK IT'S APPROXIMATELY 7 TO 8 CHILDREN. SO WE ARE GOING TO FOLLOW TOMORROW JUST TO MAKE SURE THAT THEY ARE ONE DOING THE EXIT INTERVIEW AND WE WILL TOUCH WITH FAMILIES JUST TO HEAR THEIR PART OF WHY THEY ARE NOT THERE.  

>>Nadia Combs: THANK YOU, MEMBER VAUGHN.  

>>Karen Perez: COULD YOU LOTUS KNOW AS A BOARD WHAT YOUR RESULTS ARE, PLEASE?  

>> YES. AND IN SUNSHINE, YOU WILL REPORT BACK HERE OR I WILL SHARE IT WITH YOU WHEN I MEET WITH YOU NEXT WEEK.  

>>Nadia Combs: THANK YOU, MEMBER PEREZ. MEMBER GRAY?  

>>Lynn Gray: I WANT TO THANK YOU, OWEN YOUNG, FOR THE WORK THAT YOU ARE DOING, AND THANK YOU, SUPTERINTENDENT AYRES, THE ATTENTION THAT YOU ARE GIVING, WHICH IS MONUMENTAL IN THE MINDS OF MANY OF OUR COMMUNITIES. AS YOU KNOW. IN A CONCRETE WAY, DO WE HAVE AN ACTUAL SENSE OF WHAT WE ARE GOING TO HAVE NEXT YEAR THAT YOU CAN SHARE WITH US NOW, SO WE CAN COMMUNICATE TO OTHERS? YOUNG YOUNG YO. IT WOULD BE PREMATURE TO GET A SOLID DIRECTION. WHAT I CAN SHARE IS THERE ARE MANY DISCUSSIONS AROUND THE HYBRID MODEL, WITH THE FOCUS ON EARLY LEARNING, AND I THOUGHT THAT THAT'S A GOOD PLACE TO BE. WE FREQUENTLY FOCUS ON THAT POPULATION OF JUST GETTING AHEAD AND ESTABLISHING WHAT THAT MAY LOOK LIKE FOR OUR BABIES COMING INTO SCHOOL. I THINK THE BEAUTY OF IT, MEMBER GRAY, IS THAT WE HAVE A BEAUTIFUL OPPORTUNITY WITH SUPTERINTENDENT AYRES SORT OF ESTABLISHING A TIMELINE, AND AGAIN MR. FARKAS' INVOLVEMENT TODAY, I THINK WE ARE AT A PLACE WHERE THE SUBCOMMITTEES WILL BE ABLE TO MAKE A RECOMMENDATION ROLETIVELY SOON.  

>>Lynn Gray: THAT'S EXACTLY WHAT I WANTED TO FIND OUT. THANK YOU VERY MUCH.  

>>Nadia Combs: THANK YOU, MEMBER GRAY. THANK YOU, SUPERINTENDENT. AND THANK YOU SO MUCH, MR. YOUNG, FOR THAT GREAT UPDATE. I APPRECIATE IT. BOARD MEMBERS, WHAT WE WILL DO IS WE WILL DO EMPLOYEE INPUT AND THEN FINISH UP WITH OUR BOARD COMMENTS. EMPLOYEES, WE NOW WILL TAKE YOUR INPUT. EVEN THOUGH WE HEAR PUBLIC COMMENT AT THE BEGINNING OF THE MEETING, SOMETIMES IT IS DIFFICULT FOR EMPLOYEES OF OUR DISTRICT TO ATTEND MEETINGS AFTER 4 P.M. THERE ARE MANY WAYS FOR EMPLOYEES TO MAKE THEIR VOICES HEARD INCLUDING THROUGH UNION REPRESENTATIVES, PHONE CALLS, ONE-ON-ONE CONVERSATIONS AND PUBLIC COMMENT AT THE BEGINNING OF THE MEETING. THE BOARD WANTS TO HEAR FROM YOU. WITH THIS SECTION OF OUR AGENDA WE ARE CREATING ITSELF ANOTHER AVENUE FOR EMPLOYEES TO SPEAK TO OUR BOARD. WE ARE SETTING ASIDE 30 MINUTES FOR EMPLOYEES TO SPEAK TO THE BOARD ABOUT ANY ISSUES ON YOUR BEHIND. THIS IS NOT INTENDED TO BE A DISCUSSION ABOUT SPECIFIC AGENDA ITEMS ON TONIGHT'S AGENDA BUT RATHER AN OPPORTUNITY FOR YOU TO SPEAK TO THE BOARD ABOUT ANY ISSUES RELATED TO THE JOB OR THE DISTRICT. EACH SPEAKER WILL HAVE THREE MINUTES. ALSO, I WANT TO LET ALL -- IF YOU WANT TO LEAVE, YOU CAN LEAVE NOW BEFORE THAT BUT YOU ARE WELCOME TO STAY. YOU ARE WELCOME TO STAY. OKAY, OKAY. WELL, I THINK HE'S GOING TO TURN AROUND AND DIRECT DIRECT HIS CONVERSATION TO ALL OF YOU. SO THANK YOU. YOU CAN DO A 360.  

>> WE ARE NOT FINISHED YET.  

>> IT GOES WITHOUT SAYING THAT INDIVIDUALS WHO WORK FOR THE PUBLIC SCHOOLS DO NOT DO IT TO GET RICH. SCHOOL PERSONNEL BOTH INSTRUCTIONAL AND NONINSTRUCTIONAL ARE COMMITTED INDIVIDUALS LOOKING TO MAKE A DIFFERENCE IN THE WORLD. THEY DO NOT DO IT FOR THE MONEY. IN FACT MOST OF THEM ESPECIALLY GIVEN THEIR EDUCATION CAN MAKE MUCH MORE MONEY IN OTHER CAREER FIELDS. THEREFORE THE UNIONS MAKING CONCESSIONS IN YEARS PAST TO ASSIST THE DISTRICT IN FINANCIAL HARD TIMES WAS EXTREMELY COMMENDABLE AND NO DOUBT A DIFFICULT THING TO DO. THIS COMES DIRECTLY FROM THE MAGISTRATE LAST YEAR, AND I BRING THAT UP NOT TO TALK ABOUT HOW SIDEWAYS THINGS WENT BUT TO TALK ABOUT HOW POSITIVE WE ARE MOVING RIGHT NOW. OKAY. I WANT TO THANK SUPTERINTENDENT AYRES FOR THE AUTHENTIC COLLABORATION THAT WE HAVE. I MEAN, WE ARE WORKING TOWARDS SOMETHING THAT WE HAVEN'T SEEN IN QUITE A WHILE HERE IN HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY. I ALSO WANT TO THANK OUR CHIEF NEGOTIATORS THAT WOULD BE DANIEL AND BURKE IN THE BACK US WHAT THEY ARE DOING A PROFESSIONAL AND FANTASTIC JOB OF CORRALLING THE MOOSEES AND GETTING THAT WORK DONE. LOGICALLY AND EFFICIENTLY. NOW TO BRING UP THIS POINT ABOUT TALKING ABOUT IT BEING A DIFFICULT THING TO DO. THAT DIFFICULTY IS BEING FELT BY OUR EMPLOYEES. WE ARE CLOSE TO AN AGREEMENT. WE HAVE WORK TO DO ON IT. BUT WE FEEL LIKE WE ARE REALLY THERE. I WOULD ALSO LIKE TO THANK MRS. JOHNSON, YOU HAVE DONE A GREAT JOB IN PRESENTING THE FINANCIALS BOTH TO YOU GUYS AND TO US AT BARGAINING. SHE DID A Q AND A YESTERDAY AND DID SO GRACEFULLY AND QUITE FRANKLY IN A GREAT FASHION, AND SHE'S HELPED THE FUND BALANCE IN A WAY THAT WE HAVE NEVER SEEN HERE IN HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY. IT'S AMAZING WHAT'S BEEN DONE. BUT YET WE NEED TO MAKE A DEAL AND WE NEED TO MAKE SURE THAT WE ARE HELPING THE EMPLOYEES THAT SUFFERED THROUGH THESE PAST COUPLE OF YEARS THAT HAD A REALLY HARD TIME. ONCE AGAIN WE CAN DO. THIS THERE'S A PATH. WE ARE ASKING FOR YOUR COLLABORATION. ONCE AGAIN WE CAN GET THERE. AND THANK YOU AGAIN.  

>>Nadia Combs: THANK YOU. NEXT SPEAKER, PLEASE.  

>> GOOD EVENING. HENRIQUEZ, ELEMENTARY KINDERGARTEN. I AM VERY EXCITED. BUT HERE IS ONE OF MY STUDENTS LIKES TO DO, THE CARTOON CHARACTER, SHE GOES, WAH-WAH WHEN SHE GETS IN TROUBLE, WHICH ISN'T VERY OFTEN. WE GOT TO HIRE TWO PEOPLE BUT ONLY ONE PICKED US. SO WHILE I AM GRATEFUL THAT WE HAVE NOW -- I KNOW I HAVE 23, SITTING AT 23 AND 24, IN YOU PUT 18 IN YOUR HEAD, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, WE ARE STILL SITTING HIGH, OKAY. SO I AM WEARING MY RED SHIRT FOR ITS KINDNESS DAY FOR SAY HELLO WEEK. I DIDN'T -- ISN'T THAT TERRIBLE? I DON'T HAVE A KINDNESS SHIRT. BUT I THOUGHT, HEY, I AM GOING TO WEAR THIS BECAUSE IT'S RED. WE LOVE OUR PUBLIC SCHOOLTEACHERS. AND WOULDN'T IT BE KIND IF WE SETTLE OUR CONTRACT AND GET A RAISE SO THAT WE CAN GET -- ATTRACT TEACHERS. I AM ACTUALLY OUT THERE RECRUITING AIDES THAT WOULD BE GREAT TEACHERS, OUR HOST PERSON, SHE'S PHENOMENAL. SO I'M TRYING TO FIND SOME GOOD TEACHERS, BECAUSE I'M LEAVING IN FOUR YEARS. I HAVE GOT MY PAPERS. I AM VERY EXCITED. BUT IT WOULD BE NICE TO HAVE THE RAISE AND SET THE STANDARDS SO THAT WE CAN GET GOOD PEOPLE COMING BACK INTO THE FOLD. AND ALSO, I WANT -- MY PLEDGE, I WOULD LIKE TO HAVE A RAISE SO I CAN DO THAT. OKAY. BECAUSE I AM TELLING YOU, THAT IS, AND MY DEVOTION THAT I DO EVERY MORNING AND MY PRAYERS THAT I SAY EVERY NIGHT ARE GETTING ME THROUGH HAVING 23 KINDERGARTENERS BECAUSE WE ARE STILL STAR TESTING. I FOUND OUT TODAY AT THE FACULTY MEETING FROM THE MTSS-RTI MEETING THAT WE HAD, NOW BECAUSE EVERYTHING THAT HAPPENED IN TALLAHASSEE OVER THE LAST SESSION, NOW WE HAVE TO START TESTING KINDERGARTENERS AGAIN FOR AR MATH SO THAT WE'VE DATA POINTS. AND LIKE, ARE YOU KIDDING ME? THIS IS JUST RIDICULOUS. SO IT IS ALSO NATIONAL REGISTER TO VOTE TODAY. SO PLEASE TALK TO YOUR FAMILY MEMBERS AND YOUR FRIENDS AND TELL THEM TO REGISTER. BECAUSE WE HAVE TO CHANGE TALLAHASSEE. WE HAVE TO GET PEOPLE IN THERE THAT APPRECIATE AND SUPPORT PUBLIC EDUCATION. SO THAT'S ALL I AM GOING TO SAY. THANK YOU.  

>>Nadia Combs: THANK YOU. AND OUR FINAL SPEAKER?  

>> OH, SHE'S GOT TO HEAR ABOUT ALLONS O.LET'S GO. ALONZO.  

>> READY? START. GO. GOOD EVENING TO OUR ELECTED SCHOOL BOARD MEMBERS AND TO OUR CURRENT SUPERINTENDENT. MY NAME IS HIEDI GLICK AND I'M AN AVID CARD COORDINATOR AND TEACHER AT ALONZO. I GET TO KNOW MY STUDENTS AND THEN I GIVE THEM FIRST ESSAY A SIGN 789 ABOUT GOALS, ACADEMIC, COMMUNITY SERVICE, AND THEIR PERSONAL GOALS. AFTER THEY FINISHED TYPING THEIR JOB DRAFT THEY SUBMITTED IT TO PAPER.COM FOR REVIEW. A HUMAN BEING REVIEWS THEM, GOES OVER THEIR ESSAY, THEY LOOK FOR GRAMMAR MISTAKES, CONTENT ERRORS, THEY MAKE AN EVALUATION, IN OTHER WORDS, THEY DON'T TELL THE STUDENTS WHAT THE ANSWERS, HOW YOU SHOULD CORRECT IT. YOU HAVE YOU THINK ABOUT THIS. LOOK AT WORD CHOICES. LOOK AT A LOT OF THINGS OTHER THAN GRAMMAR. SO WITH THE ASSISTANCE OF PAPER, OBVIOUSLY I CAN DO 100 ESSAYS IN ABOUT THREE DAYS. HE'S STILL WORKING FIVE WEEKS LATER ON GETTING THOSE 100 PLUS DONE. BUT ALSO USE PAPER.COM ON TUESDAYS AND THURSDAY, OUR TUTORING DAYS THROUGHOUT THE COUNTY. I HAVEN'T HAD MATH OR SCIENCE SINCE 1975 SO WHEN THE KIDS ASK ME QUESTIONS, I CAN'T HELP THEM SO THEY GET ON PAPER. AND WITHIN 30 SECONDS, A HUMAN BEING APPEARS. AND SAYS, HI, AND ADDRESSES THEM BY NAME. HOW MAY I HELP YOU? AND THE KIDS TALK ABOUT THE PROBLEM. THEY TAKE A PICTURE OF IT. THEY UPLOAD IT. AND IT IS THEY DON'T TELL THEM THE ANSWER. THEY SAY DO YOU HAVE YOUR WORK WITH YOU? OPEN YOUR BOOK. LET'S GO THROUGH IT. AND IT IS FANTASTIC. WELL, SEPTEMBER 1st, I HAD SEVERAL STUDENTS SAY TO ME, I CAN'T GET INTO MY PAPER ACCOUNT. I SAID, OH, DON'T BE SILLY. AND I CAN'T GET INTO MY PAPER ACCOUNT. WELL, WHAT HAPPENED WAS, THE CONTRACT WAS STOPPED. NOW I UNDERSTAND IT DOESN'T NEED TO BE BROUGHT TO YOU IF IT'S STOPPED, I JUST LEARNED THAT BECAUSE I WAS REALLY, REALLY ANGRY, THAT I DIDN'T KNOW ABOUT IT, BECAUSE I COME TO THE MEETINGS, I COME TO -- IF I AM NOT HERE I AM LISTENING OR I AM READING THE MINUTES. NO COMMUNICATION WAS SENT OUT TO ANYBODY THAT THIS WAS BEING STOPPED. IT'S HORRIBLE THAT IT WAS STOPPED. MY SOPHOMORES JUST FINISHED THEIR ARGUMENTATIVE PRESENTATIONS AND TWO OF THE GROUPS PICKED TO BRING BACK PAPER. THAT WAS THEIR ARGUMENT AND THEIR CALL TO ACTION WAS FOR ME TO GO TO THE SCHOOL BOARD. I SAID, HA HA, ME GO TO THE SCHOOL BOARD? DON'T BE SILLY. I JUST WANT YOU TO KNOW THAT I WOULD BE REALLY, REALLY HAPPEN IF YOU BROUGHT PAPER.COM BACK. I HAVE TALKED TO PETE DEMICK, THEY, I MET WITH HIM YESTERDAY, I AM MEETING WITH HIM TOMORROW IN PER R TOMORROW. THEIR AI LOOKS FOR GRAMMAR AND NOTHING ELSE. BUT I WOULD BE REALLY, RIM HAPPY, I WOULD BE SO HAPPY, THAT I WOULD BE SO BUSY I COULDN'T COME HERE AND COMPLAIN ABOUT THINGS FOR AT LEAST TWO MEETINGS. JUST WANTED TO LET NOW. THANK YOU.  

>>Nadia Combs: THANK YOU. THAT CONCLUDES OUR EMPLOYEE COMMENT FOR OUR MEETING. WE WILL NOW GO TO BOARD COMMENTS. GO AHEAD AND STARTLE WITH YOU,  

>>Henry "Shake" Washington: OKAY , THANK YOU, MADAM CHAIR. FIRST I WARRANT TO SAY OCTOBER 12TH, THEY WORK WITH THE SCHOOL SYSTEM FOR A PARTNERSHIP, AND WE ARE WORKING ON SHORE ELEMENTARY AND WOODSON, AND WHAT WE ARE DOING IS TO GIVE OUR GIFTS TO THREE DIFFERENT SCHOOLS, 20 FAMILIES, FOR THE UNDERSERVED FAMILIES THAT DON'T HAVE. AND WE SHOULD BE GIVING OUT THIS CHRISTMAS. I KNOW WE ARE NOT SUPPOSED TO SAY CHRISTMAS BUT I AM GOING TO SAY IT ANYWAY. WE GIVE OUT ABOUT OVER 300 GIFTS TO FAMILIES, BICYCLES, TOYS, EXPENSIVE TOYS AND SO FORTH. SO I JUST WANTED YOU ALL TO REALIZE THAT WE SEE YOU IS A GREAT ORIGINAL AND THEY HAVE BEEN DOING A LOT FOR THE SCHOOL DISTRICT FOR YEARS. AND ALSO THEY WORK WITH THE TONY DUNGY FOUNDATION, MANY TIMES, BUT NOW WE SEE YOU KIND OF WENT OUT AND SPREAD IT OUT WHERE THEY CAN GIVE OUT A LOT OF TOYS AND GIFTS FOR THE HOLIDAYS, AND WHICH I THINK IS GREAT, BECAUSE YOU MAY NOT REALIZE, WE HAVE A LOT OF FAMILIES THAT DON'T HAVE. AND IT'S OUR JOB AS OUTREACH TO MAKE SURE THAT THEY HAVE. AND I JUST WANT TO GIVE THE WE SEE YOU KUDOS. THEN MOVING ON TO SEPTEMBER 14th, ON SEPTEMBER 14th, I HAD THE OPPORTUNITY TO ATTEND FOSTER ELEMENTARY SCHOOL, THE PRO DADS, AND THE TOPIC WAS SELF-CONTROL. AND WE HAD ABOUT MAYBE 10 TO 12 DADS THERE. BUT IT WAS VERY, VERY, VERY INSPIRATIONAL, BECAUSE ONE OF THE THINGS THAT I CONCENTRATED ON, BESIDES SELF-CONTROL, IS BEING A FATHER THERE FOR A KID. BEING AN ADMINISTRATOR FOR ALL THESE YEARS IN HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY SCHOOL SYSTEM, WE ALWAYS SAID, WHEN SOMETHING HAPPENED TO A KID IN SCHOOL, CALL THE MAMA. THEY NEVER DAME UP AND SAID CALL THE DADDY. THEY SAID SOMETHING HAPPENED, IF A KID GOT IN SOME KIND OF BEHAVIOR PROBLEM, I SAY CALL THE MAMA. AND I WANTED THE FATHERS TO UNDERSTAND THAT YOU ARE VERY IMPORTANT IN THE DEVELOPMENT OF YOUR KID. THE HARDEST JOB YOU CAN HAVE AS A PARENT IS BEING A PARENT. THAT'S THE HARDEST JOB YOU EVER HAD BECAUSE YOU HAVE YOUR KID THAT YOU HAVE TO ALSO MAINTAIN, AND BEING IN EDUCATION YOU HAVE OTHER KIDS. YOU HAVE ALSO TO MAINTAIN. AND I THINK I REACHED THEM IN A POSITIVE WAY, BECAUSE WE NEED MORE FATHERS INVOLVED IN THE FAMILY LIFE AND COMING TO THE SCHOOLS TO HELP OUT. NOT ALL FATHERS, BUT THERE ARE SOME THAT WE NEED TO WORK ON SO THEY CAN COME TO THE SCHOOL AND HELP OUT. AND IT WAS VERY TOUCHING. BEFORE I LEFT, I TOLD FOSTER FATHERS, THE FATHER THAT BRINGS THE MOST FATHERS BACK TO THE SCHOOL NEXT TIME WE MEET I AM GOING TO GIVE THEM $100. I THINK THAT SHOULD BE INSPIRATION FOR THEM TO BRING SOME OF THE FATHERS TO SCHOOL. AND COME AND PARTICIPATE AND HELP OUT AND DO THE THINGS IT TAKES. I AM MOST PROUD BECAUSE I AM A FATHER. I'M VERY PROUD TO BE A FATHER. AND I THINK WE REACHED SOME OF THEM. THEY WERE VERY MOTIVATED. I THINK I HAD A GOOD FEELING WHEN I LEFT. SO THAT WAS ONE OF THE GREAT MOMENTS I HAVE HAD THIS YEAR TO TALK TO THE DADS ABOUT BEING A FATHER AND BEING DISCIPLINED AND HAVING SELF-CONTROL. THAT NIGHT WAS A DIFFERENT STORY. THAT NIGHT I HAD THE OPPORTUNITY TO GO TO ONE OF THE OLDEST FOOTBALL GAMES IN HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY, BLAKE AND MIDDLETON. AND MANY OF YOU MAY NOT KNOW ABOUT BLAKE AND MIDDLETON. THEY WERE TWO PREDOMINANT BLACK HIGH SCHOOLS THAT PLAYED FOOTBALL, AND I GUESS EACH OTHER, AS WELL AS BASKETBALL, AT PHILLIPS FIELD. PHILLIPS FIELD WAS A SCHOOL THAT THE UNIVERSITY OF TAMPA USED. SO WE GOT BEAT THIS YEAR 48 TO 14. SO THEY DID US PRETTY GOOD. BUT ANYWAY, IT WAS A GREAT GAME. AND THEN I HAD MY LAST -- I AM RUNNING QUICK -- HAD A CHANCE TO BE GO TO THE RETIREMENT FOR ANGELA FOR HER 35 YEARS OF SERVICE IN HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY. THAT'S ALL I HAVE. IT WAS REALLY GREAT BEING THERE. THANK YOU. I HAD TO DO SOME DANCING. BUT THANK YOU.  

>>Nadia Combs: THANK YOU, MEMBER WASHINGTON. MEMBER GRAY.  

>>Lynn Gray: I WAS GOING TO SAY, LET'S START OUT BY SHOWING THAT VIDEO. BUT MIGHT GET IN TROUBLE FOR THAT ONE. AND MEMBER WASHINGTON, THANK YOU FOR THAT HEARTFELT REMINDER, THE IMPORTANCE OF OUR DADS, FATHERS, TO BE SO INVOLVED WITH THE CHILD'S LIFE, THEIR CHILD, THEIR CHILDREN. SUPTERINTENDENT AYRES, A LITTLE OFF THE SUBJECT. AND PABLO, IF YOU CAN CUT MY TIME FOR A SECOND? BECAUSE I WANTED TO SEE IF WE CAN DO A FEW SENTENCES ABOUT WHAT IS GOING ON FROM THIS POINT ON WITH THE CYBER SECURITY BREECH. I HAVE HAD DIFFERENT TYPES OF CALLS, AND WHAT I HAVE BEEN SAYING IS, WE ARE HAVING AN INVESTIGATION, AND I WILL LET YOU KNOW AS SOON AS THOSE FINDINGS COME. IS THERE ANYTHING ELSE?  

>>Van Ayres: ABSOLUTELY. WE ARE WORKING WITH LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICIALS AND CYBER SECURITY EXPERTS ON THE INVESTIGATION. GOOD NEWS IS WE ARE ABOUT IT 9% SYSTEM RESTORATION -- 99% RESTORATION. WE HOPE TO HAVE THAT TIMIZE IT NEXT FEW WEEKS. THESE MY STATEMENT.  

>>Lynn Gray: ARE THERE ANY EMPLOYEE RECORDS OR ANYTHING LIKE THAT, SOME TYPE OF DANGER?  

>>Van Ayres: THAT'S ALL PART OF THAT FORENSIC AUDIT THAT'S HAPPENING WITH SURE FIRE. THAT'S OUR CURRENT PROCESS RIGHT NOW THAT WE ARE UNDERGOING. WE SHOULD HAVE THAT ANSWER IN THE NEXT FEW WEEKS.  

>>Lynn Gray: OKAY, THANK YOU. ALL RIGHT, THEN, I WILL START ON MY COMMENTS. NOT YET, PABLO. I'LL TELL YOU WHEN TO DO THE MONTESSORI. OKAY. OKAY. THAT'S FINE. LET ME GO AHEAD AND START THEN WITH BOARD COMMENTS FROM 4:15 LEFT. THE SOS, STUDENT ON LINE SAFETY PARENTAL AWARENESS EVENT WILL BE HELD AT BALLAST POINT ELEMENTARY SCHOOL IN THE MEDIA CENTER FROM 5:30 P.M. TILL 7:00 P.M. I JUST WANT TO THANK OUR PTA AT BALLAST POINT, THE WONDERFUL PRINCIPAL, BETH -- AND I AM TRYING TO GET THE LAST NAME, SORRY, BUT I WILL GET THAT LATER ON, BETH HASTINGS, OUR WONDERFUL DEDICATED HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY PUBLIC SCHOOL STAFF, MELISSA AND PAM, OUR HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY SHERIFF'S OFFICE, AND THE KNOW MORE FOUNDATION, ALL PART OF SHARING AND SHOWING THE INFORMATION ABOUT THE CELL PHONE USAGE, THE STRATEGIES, AND WHAT THE PARENTS CAN DO TO MAKE THEIR CHILD'S SAFER AS FAR AS THE CELL PHONE USAGE AND OTHER SOCIAL MEDIA. AVENUES. THEN I WANT TO JUMP TO THE NATIONAL HISPANIC HERITAGE MONTH, BEGINNING ON SEPTEMBER 15th, AND IT'S A BIG RECKONING ALL OF OUR SCHOOL SITES WILL BEGIN THIS. I WANT TO THANK OUR PRINCIPALS, OUR STAFF, I MEAN OUR TEACHERS ARE WORKING HARD ALREADY, TO MAKE ALL KIND OF CELEBRATORY EVENTS, ONING THE CONTRACTIONS OF THE ANCESTORS FROM SPAIN, MEXICO, CARIBBEAN, AND CENTRAL AND SITE AMERICA. SO WE ARE VERY EXCITED. WE HAVE LOTS TO LOOK FORWARD TO IN TERMS OF LEARNING ABOUT THE CULTURE, THE GREAT LEADERSHIP, AND OUR STUDENTS ARE JUST VERY MUCH INVOLVED AND ACTUALLY BEGINNING PROBABLY NOW. SO AT ANY RATE, THE NEXT ITEM -- AND THIS IS WHERE I HAVE A FEW PHOTOS, THE ESRICK ELEMENTARY SCHOOL, PACK LOW.  I AM NOT AN EXPERT ON MONTESSORI BUT I AM A TEACHER OF MANY YEARS, AND I HAVE TO SAY THAT THE AMOUNT OF TEACHING WHICH BEGINS AT THREE YEARS OLD TO FIVE, IT'S JUST AMAZING, WHEN KIDS AT THREE ARE LEARNING MULTIPLICATIONS, THE BASICS OF READING. EVERYTHING THEY LEARN IS FROM LEFT TO RIGHT WHICH IS PART OF THE PREPARATION FOR READING. THEY REALLY ARE INVOLVED IN THE ENVIRONMENT, AND THEY PRACTICE SUCH GOODWILL, HEARTFELT ACTIONS TOWARDS EACH OTHER. AND THERE'S SO MUCH MORE THAT I CAN SAY, BUT THE PROPER THING TO DO RIGHT NOW IS TO REALLY THANK PRINCIPAL BEVERLY SMITH, THE AP SISSEL AND KIMBERLY FOWLER. THE TEACHERS ARE JUST GREAT. WHAT YOU ARE SEEING ON THERE RIGHT NOW ARE A LOT OF THE WORK THAT SHOWS THE CARING FOR OTHERS AND THE ENVIRONMENT. IS THERE ANY OTHER -- PABLO, DID I PUT ANY OTHER SLIDES THERE? YEAH, THAT'S THE MOMENT MULTIPLICATION. AND THEN THE MOST IMPORTANT, THE TEACHERS. THAT'S THE LEADER OF MONTESSORI AND THE AP. AND ONE MORE SLIDE. THERE'S YOUR TEACHER. ONE OF THE MANY. BUT THEY ACTUALLY GET -- THEY ARE TAKING GRADUATE COURSES SO THEY CAN LEARN MONTESSORI BACKWARDS AND FORWARD BUT THEY HAVE CONTINUING EDUCATION. AND SO THE DEDICATION OF THESE TEACHERS IS VERY, VERY MUCH TO BE REVERED. SO AT ANY RATE, THE LAST THING, AND I KNOW THE BOARD MEMBERS WERE THERE, MEMBER VAUGHN AND MEMBER PEREZ, MYSELF, MEMBER RENDON AT THE PBIS WITH FRANK DIAZ OPENING UP THAT WONDERFUL SUPPORT SYSTEM, PBIS IS NO DOUBT PROBABLY ONE OF THE MOST INFLUENTIAL WAYS TO PREVENT ACTS OF DISCIPLINE PROBLEMS, BUT AT ANY RATE, THANK YOU. AND MY TIME IS UP.  

>>Nadia Combs: THANK YOU, MEMBER GRAY. MEMBER VAUGHN.  

>>Jessica Vaughn: THANK YOU I HAVE A LOT TO COVER SO I AM GOING TO TRY TO GO FAST. PABLO, DO YOU HAVE THOSE SLIDES? SO SPEAKING OF WHAT MEMBER GRAY WAS TALKING ABOUT, HERE ARE SOME PHOTOS OF THE OPENING OF THE PBIS LIBERTY. IT WAS A REALLY GREAT EVENT. WE HAD SO MUCH ENGAGEMENT. REPRESENTATIVE DRISCOLL WAS THERE, REPRESENTATIVE VALDEZ, THERE WAS SOMEONE WHO REPRESENTED REPRESENTATIVE REED, A LOT OF THE SCHOOL BOARD MEMBERS WERE THERE, AND I JUST WANT TO S SAY THANK YOU TOTAL BRINKS FOUNDATION WHO HELPED MAKE SURE THIS ROOM HAPPENED, THE TAMPA FOUNDATION, HART LINK, AND OF COURSE PTA AND PRINCIPAL DIAZ. HE IS A CHAMPION FOR ANYTHING HE NEEDS AT LIBERTY. IT WAS A HOT DAY BUT IT WAS GREAT AND AS YOU CAN CEASE THERE WERE STUDENT AMBASSADORS TO BE SHOW US THE ROOM AND THEY WERE THE BEST PART OF THE EXPERIENCE. SO EXCITEMENT JUST SO EXCITED ABOUT THAT. AND THEN LATER ON THAT DAY, I ACTUALLY WENT TO CHILES ELEMENTARY AND WE HAD A CLAPOUT FOR THE SECRETARY THERE, THE BELOVED SECRETARY, MISS SAWS I. SOME PEOPLE HAD HER FACE PRINTED ON SIGNS. THEY HAD GIANT STREAMERS, WALKED AROUND THERE. WERE TWO PREVIOUS PRINCIPALS THERE. AND SHE HAS DONE SUCH AN AMAZING AND ASSET TO THAT SCHOOL. THERE WAS NOT A DRY A ANYWHERE TO BE FOUND. I WANT TO SAY THANK YOU TO HER. MENT WAS AN HONOR TO BE THERE. WE ARE NOT LOSING HER TO THE DISTRICT. BUT CHILES ELEMENTARY JUST WON'T BE THE SAME WITHOUT HER. SHE WAS THERE AS THE MOST ENGAGED PARENT FROM THE DAY IT OPENED, QUICKLY TRANSITIONED TO SECRETARY AND SHE'S BEEN AN ASSET TO THAT SCHOOL FOR 20 YEARS AND ALWAYS HAD AN AMAZING EXPERIENCE WITH HER. I JUST WANT TO SAY WE LOVE YOU AND WE ARE GOING TO MISS YOU. THOSE WERE TWO GREAT THINGS THAT I GOT TO EXPERIENCE LAST WEEK. I ALSO WANT TO SAY THANK YOU TO THE GRANDPARENTS DAY. MY SON'S GRANDPARENTS REALLY ENJOYED BEING ABLE TO GO INTO HIS SCHOOL AND SEE WHAT THAT WAS LIKE AND HAVE BREAKFAST WITH HIM. ALSO START WITH HELLO WEEK IS IN FULL GLORY. I AM SEEING PICTURES FROM ALL OVER THE DISTRICT, THE DIFFERENT STUDENTS, AND SCHOOLS, WAND THEY ARE DOING TODAY WAS CRAZY HAIR DAY FOR MY SON AND WE NOT PARTICIPATE IN THAT. HE'S TOO FANCY. BUT HE IS EXCITED ABOUT THE REST OF THE WEEK. ALSO, I WANT TO WELCOME DR. PATTON. YOU HAVE A BIG JOB IN FRONT OF YOU. I WILL REALLY HOPING THAT ONE OF THE THINGS THAT YOU WILL BE ABLE TO HELP US FOCUS ON IS GETTING PEOPLE IN OUR DISTRICT WITH THESE VACANCIES. BECAUSE I KNOW WE ARE DOING BETTER THAN WE DID LAST YEAR WITH YOU THERE'S STILL A LOT OF ANXIETY AND ISSUES WITHIN OUR SCHOOLS AND THAT'S GOT TOB OUR NUMBER ONE FOCUS IS GETTING ADULTS IN OUR CLASSROOMS TO LOOK AFTER OUR KID. WE'LL DO EVERYTHING WE CAN TO BE SUPPORT YOU BUT YOU HAVE A BIG JOB IN FRONT OF YOU. WELCOME. I WANT TO POINT OUT IN THE LETTER THAT YOU SENT OUT, SUPERINTENDENT AVES, THAT WE DO-OH SUPTERINTENDENT AYRES, WE HAVE THE MAGNET FAIRS IN OCTOBER, BUT ALSO WANT TO LET PARENTS KNOW THAT YOU CAN ALSO DOUGH A TOUR OF THE SCHOOL, THAT YOU CAN ARRANGE PRIVATELY, YOU DON'T HAVE TO WAIT FOR THE FAIR, SO IF THERE'S A SCHOOL THAT YOU ARE INTERESTED IN, YOU CAN TALK TO THE ADMINISTRATOR. THEY HAVE WAYS ON LINE TO MAKE SURE YOU GET OUT THERE AND TOUR THOSE SCHOOLS IN YOU WANT TO.  ALSO THERE'S THE SOCIAL MEDIA SURVEY WHICH I DIDN'T KNOWN ABOUT UNTIL I SAW THAT LETTER, THAT WENT OUT TO FAMILIES. SO AS MABB MEMBER GRAY TALKED SO MUCH ABOUT THE SOCIAL MEDIA POLICY, THERE HAS BEEN A SURVEY THAT GOES OUT TO PARENTS. WHEN DOES THAT CLOSE? I DIDN'T SEEP THE CLOSING DATE OF THAT SURVEY.  

>>Van Ayres: I DON'T HAVE THAT DATA RIGHT NOW.  

>>Jessica Vaughn: IF YOU CAN PUT ON THE FORM WHAT THE DATE IT CLOSES. IT LOOKS LIKE IT GOT A LOT OF GOOD ENGAGEMENT.  

>>Van Ayres: OAK 2nd.  

>>Jessica Vaughn: OCTOBER 2nd. OKAY. I SAW MEMBER RENDON WENT OUT AND DID A TOWN HALL ABOUT THAT SO I AM EXCITED TO SEE THE FEEDBACK. IN REGARDS TO PAPER, I KNOW THAT WE HAD A CONVERSATION WHERE I WAS CONCERNED THAT LAST TIME WE DID PAPER WE GOT A LOT OF FEEDBACK FROM THE EMPLOYEES WHO REALLY LIKED IT. AND AT THE TIME I THOUGHT WE WERE GOING TO DO A SURVEY -- SURVEY BEFORE WE MADE THAT DECISION. DO WE HAVE THAT SURVEY?  

>> THE CONTACT SUPERVISORS SURVEY THE DEPARTMENT HEADS AT HIGH SCHOOL AND THE SUBJECT AREA LEADERSALITY MIDDLE OOH SCHOOL TO GATHER FEEDBACK BASED ON ITS USAGE AND THE RETURN ON INVESTMENT. SO SENDING A SURVEY OUT TO EACH INDIVIDUAL TEACHER WE DID NOT DO.  

>>Jessica Vaughn: OH, OKAY. ALL RIGHT. WELL, WE WILL HAVE SOME MORE CONVERSATION ABOUT THAT YOU ABOUT I APPRECIATE THE UPDATE ON THAT. AND FINALLY, I KNOW THAT WE HAVE THE SUSPENDED AGENDA. YOU HAVE KIND OF GONE OVER THE JUST THING THAT I KNOW IS IMPORTANT. I KNOW AS A BOARD WE TALKED ABOUT LITERACY AND WHAT A FOCUS THAT IS. I KNOW THAT DURING THE CONVERSATION WITH JUST, WE HAD A LOT OF CONVERSATION ABOUT OTHER SCHOOLS AND STUDENTS IN THE SAME SITUATION AND HOW WE REALLY WANT TO FOCUS ON THAT GOING FORWARD. AND YOU HAVE DONE AN AMAZING JOB WITH MORALE AND FOCUSOGUE ON THAT. IT'S PERMEATING THROUGHOUT EVERY COMMENT, WHAT A GOOD JOB THAT YOU HAVE DONE. BUT AS A BOARD WHAT I WOULD REALLY LIKE TO START TALKING ABOUT AND FOCUSING IS DEFINITELY GETTING AN UPDATE IS WHAT WE ARE DOING ABOUT OUR LITERACY CRISIS ARCHED HAVING CONVERSATIONS ABOUT THAT AND TALKING ABOUT DATA. SO I WOULD LIKE TO MAKE SURE THAT AT EVERY MEETING IF WE CAN HAVE A CONVERSATION, AN UPDATE ON WHERE WE ARE FOCUSING WHAT WE ARE DOING FOR OUR LITERACY, BECAUSE I THINK WE ALL SAID AS A BOARD THAT'S OUR NUMBER ONE PRIORITY TO HAVE FOCUS ON. THANK YOU.  

>>Van Ayres: I WILL MAKE SURE THAT EVERY SUSPENDED AGENDA WE WILL HAVE SOME TYPE OF LITERACY UPDATE. THANK YOU, MS. VAUGHN.  

>>Nadia Combs: PERFECT. TWO SECOND. MEMBER PEREZ.  

>>Karen Perez: THIS IS MY MONTH. THE MONTH OF MY HERITAGE. I AM SO EXCITED. AND THANK YOU FOR MENTAL HEALTH DAY OCTOBER 10. SO IT STARTED OFF WITH A KICK. SEPTEMBER 15th. HCC HAD AN INCREDIBLE HISPANIC HERITAGE MONTH CELEBRATION. AND AWARDS WERE HANDED OUT. AND TODAY, THE HISPANIC HERITAGE INCORPORATED, INCORPORATION, DR. DUSTIN CRANE, I HOPE I AM SAYING HIS NAME RIGHT, CORRINE? THE AWARD FOR COMMUNITY PARTNERSHIP AS A DIRECTOR AT MORE ELEMENTARY. I WANT TO CONGRATULATE HIM FOR THE WORK THAT HE DOES AT MORE BUT ALSO IN SUPPORTING THE HISPANIC STUDENTS THERE. WHAT'S GOING ON IS THAT CELEBRATING -- I WANTED ALSO TO TALK ABOUT, BOARD MEMBERS, WE HAVE A PARTNERSHIP, AND THE PARTNERSHIP, PABLO, WITH HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY SCHOOLS, WE ARE PARTNERING WITH NORTH AMERICA FOR A CULTURAL DISPLAY AT JEFFERSON HIGH SCHOOL. I'M SO, SO DESPITE BOARD OF DIRECTOR THIS. THROUGH THE DISPLAY WE WILL DEVELOP SOCIAL AND CULTURAL PROGRAMS THAT PRESERVE THE EXHIBIT AND VARIOUS CULTURES TO PROMOTE THE LEGACY THROUGHOUT OUR COMMUNITIES. OUR OBJECTIVE IS THAT WE ARE AIMING TO ACQUIRE, HIS STORE AND PRESERVE HISTORICAL DOCUMENT TO LEARN FROM AND SHOWCASE, DOCUMENTS, BOOKS AND OTHER MEMORABILIA. THE GOAL IS TO CONTINUE TO IMPROVE THE QUALITY OF LIFE IN OUR HISPANIC AND NON-HISPANIC COMMUNITIES, AND PROMOTE THE MULTICULTURAL LESS -- LEGACY THROUGHOUT TAMPA BAY. I WANT TO THANK CHRIS FARKAS, BEN MOORE, CORENT MARTINEZ, BRITTANY WILHELM, THE PRINCIPAL AT JEFFERSON HIGH SCHOOL, THE API OF JEFFERSON HIGH, AND NOSTR AMERICA FOUNDATION, FOR OUR PARTNERSHIP AND A BRINGING THIS TO THE HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY SCHOOLS. BUT ALSO MARK MIRALES BECAUSE HE HAS BEEN RUNNING WITH ME A LOT AND GETTING THIS DONE. BUT I AM REALLY EXCITED ABOUT THIS PROJECT AND HOPEFULLY WITHIN THE NEXT COUPLE OF WEEKS WE WILL BE HAVING A RIBBON CUTTING, AND A PRESENTATION TO THE COMMUNITY. AND ALSO, LAST BUT NOT LEAST, HAVING A HISPANIC EXPO SUNDAY, OCTOBER 1st, AND SOME OF THE DISTRICT FOLKS THAT OUR CHILDREN WILL BE PARTICIPATING IN THAT. IT'S GOING TO BE AT THE CUBAN CLUB FROM 11 TILL 4, AND ALL YOU ARE TOTALLY INVITED. I WANT TO TELL YOU, THERE'S GOING TO BE FOOD TRUCKS, AND SATURDAY I SPENT MY DAY RUNNING BEHIND SOME FOOD TRUCKS. I AM QUIET BUT NOT SHY. AND THERE'S GOING TO BE SOME GREAT FOOD THERE. BUT THANK YOU.  

>>Nadia Combs: THANK YOU, MEMBER PEREZ. MESH HAHN.  

>>Stacy Hahn: THANK YOU, MEMBER COMBS. MEMBER PEREZ, YOU ARE A GREAT REPRESENTATIVE AND CHAMPION FOR HIS PAP I CAN COMMUNITY, NOT JUST THIS MONTH SO THANK YOU FOR ALL YOU DO. I WANT TO FIRST SAY, IT WAS A GREAT WEEK, AND ONE OF THE HIGHLIGHTS WAS THE HILLSBOROUGH EDUCATION FOUNDATION LUNCHEON. IT WAS CERTAINLY AN EVENT WHERE WE CELEBRATED THE POWER OF EDUCATION. IT WAS VERY INSPIRING. I AM ALSO A BOARD MEMBER AND VERY PROUD OF THAT AND WANT TO GIVE A SHOUTOUT TO THE CURRENT CEO KIM JOEL. SHE IS MOVING OVER TO THE OTHER SIDE OF THE BRIDGE AND SHE'S GOING TO BE AT THE ST. PETE EDUCATION FOUNDATION. BUT I HAVE HAD THE HONOR, EACH BEFORE I WAS ON THE BOARD OF HAF, EACH BEFORE THE BOARD TO WORK WITH KIM AT HAF, AND I WILL MISS SEEING HER AS OFTEN AS I GET TO SEE HER. SHE'S ALWAYS BEEN A GREAT CHAMPION OF THE EARLY CHILDHOOD AND LITERACY FAIRS. WE ALWAYS HAD A LOT IN KNOWN AND A LOT OF SYNERGY AROUND THAT WORK. BUT I KNOW THAT WE WILL CONTINUE TO FIND WAYS TO WORK TOGETHER ACROSS THE BRIDGE, AROUND EDUCATION ISSUES. SHE IS REALLY MADE HER MARK ON NOT JUST EDUCATION IN OUR COMMUNITY BUT REALLY RAISING THE PROFILE OF HAFS AND WORKING VERY WELL IN COLLABORATION WITH THE DISTRICT. LONG BEFORE I WAS ON THE BOARD AND JUST WORKING WITH HAFS, WORKING WITH DIFFERENT LEADERS THROUGH HAFS, SHE IS EYE GAME CHANGER. SO I WILL MISS HER DEARLY. AND SHE CERTAINLY HAS DONE A LOT TO MOVE THE NEEDLE IN THIS DISTRICT. SO SHE'S A BIG LOSS FOR US AND A BIG WIN FOR ST. PETE. BUT I'M SURE THE INTERIM CEO WILL DO A GREAT JOB AS WELL. ALSO, I WANT TO ANNOUNCE AN EVENT COMING UP. YOU ALL KNOW, I HAVE A PERSONAL CONNECTION TO THE MILITARY THROUGH MY FAMILY, AND I REPRESENT MacDILL AIR FORCE BASE, AND MANY OF THE MILITARY FAMILIES RESIDE IN DISTRICT TWO AS WELL AS MS. RENDON'S DISTRICT, AND TYPICALLY I DO AN EVENT AT CHRISTMASTIME. IT'S A CHRISTMAS EVENT, AND WE WELCOME THE FAMILIES, AND WE DO A BREAKFAST AND STORY TIME, AND IT'S WONDERFUL BECAUSE IT'S JUST EXCITING, AND WE HAVE A GUEST AUTHOR WHO SPEAKS -- AN AUTHOR WITHIN THE MILITARY COMMUNITY TO READ A CHILDREN'S BOOK. IT'S JUST CHRISTMAS FUN TIME TO CELEBRATE. SO THAT EVENT HAS ALWAYS BEEN WELL RECEIVED. BUT THE FEEDBACK WE ALWAYS GET IS WE WANT TO DO MORE FOR FAMILIES IN THE BEGINNING OF THE SCHOOL YEAR AS WELL TO WELCOME THEM TO OUR COMMUNITY. WE GET THOUSANDS OF FAMILIES FROM ACROSS THE COUNTRY, AND THE WORLD, ACTUALLY, WHO ARE STATIONED IN TAMPA, AND WE DO A REALLY GOOD JOB WORKING WITH THE BASE TO WELCOME FAMILIES AND WORK WITH THEM DURING THEIR STAY HERE TO MAKE THEIR TRANSITION TO HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY PUBLIC SCHOOLS AS SEAMLESS AS POSSIBLE. SO WE ARE GOING TO BE HOSTING A WELCOME FAIR, IT'S A LUNCH AND LEARN, AND IT WILL BE FOR MILITARY FAMILIES TO GET ALL THEIR QUESTIONS ANSWERED, AND TO GET CONNECTED WITH PEOPLE IN OUR DISTRICT AND RESOURCES, A IT'S SOMETIMELY BECAUSE WE ARE DOING IT RIFE BEFORE THE CHOICE WINDOWS OPENS, SO THAT WAY FAMILIES WHO ARE NEW HERE HAVE THE OPPORTUNITY TO LEARN BEGUN HOW OUR CHOICE SYSTEM WORKS, OR THEY CAN FIND SUPPORT FOR THAT SYSTEM, AND ALL THE AMAZING CHOICES THAT THEY HAVE IN HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY PUBLIC SCHOOLS, BECAUSE WE DO OFFER SO MUCH MORE CHOICE THAN A LOT OF THESE FAMILIES ARE USED TO HAVING COMING FROM OTHER STATES OR COUNTRIES. SO IT'S GOING TO BE A GREAT FAIR. IT'S OCTOBER 10th. IT WILL BE ON MacDILL AIR FORCE BASE, SO YOU HAVE TO HAVE MILITARY BASE ACCESS TO ATTEND, WHICH MOST OF OUR MILITARY ACTIVE MILITARY FAMILIES HAVE. IT'S GOING TO TAKE PLACE ON A WEEKDAY DURING LUNCHTIME, BECAUSE THAT'S WHEN MOST PEOPLE DON'T LEAVE THE BASE DURING LUNCH TIME. IT TAKES A LOT TO GET OFF BASE AND ON BASE AND ALL THAT. SO WE ARE GOING TO OFFER THEM A GRAB AND GO LUNCH DURING THE PROCESS AND WE WILL HAVE EVERY AREA OF THIS DISTRICT REPRESENTED. YOUR E-MAIL IS YET TO COME TO OUR EMPLOYEES, ABOUT YOU WE WANT TO HAVE AS MANY RESOURCES THERE AS POSSIBLE. SO I AM VERY EXCITED ABOUT THAT. WE GET TO WELCOME A LOT OF NEW FAMILIES AND PROVIDE THEM WITH RESOURCES SO THEY CHOOSE HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY PUBLIC SCHOOLS WHEN THEY ARRIVE DURING THE NEXT COUPLE YEARS WHILE THEY ARE HERE, THEY WILL STAY IN OUR SCHOOLS. SO THAT'S IT FOR ME. AND REALLY JUST APPRECIATE EVERYBODY'S COMMENTS THIS EVENING. THANK YOU.  

>>Nadia Combs: THANK YOU, MEMBER HAHN. AND THANK YOU FOR TALKING ABOUT KIM AND EVERYTHING SHE'S DONE FOR HAFS. THAT WAS AN AMAZING LUNCHEON. I OFTEN TWO TO SCHOOLS AND GO TO RENTS. ONE OF THE REALLY SPECIAL EVENTS I WENT TO THIS WEEK WAS SENIORS IN SERVICE AND HOW THEY GO OUT THERE AND THEY REALLY SUPPORT SENIORS CAN GO OUT THERE AND THEY CAN WORK IN THE CLASSROOMS AND WORK WITH OUR VETERANS, OR WORK AND ADVOCATE FOR OTHER PEOPLE WHO ARE IN ELDERLY CARE. AND I DO WANT TO TALK ABOUT SOMETHING MORE SERIOUS THAT I THINK EVERYBODY IS THINKING ABOUT LATELY, AND THAT IS LIKE THE INCREASE IN CRIME, THE INCREASE OF ACCESS FOR KIDS, WITH GUNS AND WHAT'S HAPPENING IN OUR COMMUNITY. JUST THIS WEEK ALONE THERE'S BEEN SEVERAL INCIDENTS, AND I KNOW THAT FREDDY BART ONWITH SAFE AND SOUND CONTINUES TO DO AN INCREDIBLE JOB. ABOUT A MONTH AND A HALF AGO I MET MELISSA AND GRACE FOR THE BE SMART ORANGE AND WE HAVE WORKED REALLY ALONGSIDE STEP BY STEP TRYING TO LET PEOPLE NOTICE ABOUT REALLY LOCKING YOUR GUNS UP AND SECURING IT. SO I WANTED TO SHOW SOME KEY CAT POINTS THAT MORE THAN 700 U.S. CHILDREN DIE BY GUN SUICIDE EVERY YEAR IN FLORIDA, AN AVERAGE OF 214 CHILDREN AND TEENS DIE BY GUNS EVERY YEAR OF WHICH 29% OF THESE DEATHS ARE SUICIDES. ACCORDING TO CDC NATIONAL YOUTH, 20% OF HIGH SCHOOL SERIOUSLY CONSIDERED ATTEMPTING SUICIDE WITHIN THE LAST YEAR. THE TWO GROUPS WHICH ARE MOST UNINTENTIONALLY SHOOT THEMSELVES OR OTHERS ARE HIGH SCHOOL STUDENT BETWEEN THE AGES OF 14 AND 17, FOLLOWED BY PRESCHOOLERS AGES 5 AND YOUNGER. THE NUMBER OF INCIDENTS INVOLVING GUNS AT SCHOOLS PRESCHOOL AK-12 OVER THE PAST TEN YEARS HAS DRASTICALLY GONE UP. THREE FOURTHS OF SCHOOL SHOOTERS ACQUIRE THE GUNS OF A HOME OR PARENT OR CLOSE RELATIVE. ALTHOUGH LESS THAN ONE PERCENT OF THE GUN VIOLENCE IN THE U.S. MASS SHOOTINGS   5% OF CHILDREN SAY MASS SHOOTINGS AS A PRIMARY SOURCE OF STRESS. SO THIS BE SMART IS REALLY ABOUT HAVING YOUR GUNS LOCKED UP AND SECURE. OFTEN WE ARE HEARING THAT KIDS ARE FINDING GUNS IN UNLOCKED CARS OR IN AREAS LIKE THAT OR AT HOME. SO QUITE A WHILE AGO, SUPTERINTENDENT AYRES, MYSELF, CHIEF BERCAW AND JOHN PNEUMONIA ON CHIEF OF SECURITY, WE ALL WORKED TOGETHER TO CREATE A PUBLIC SERVICE ANNOUNCEMENT AND I WOULD LIKE TO SHARE THAT WITH YOU NOW.  

>> EVERY DAY IN HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY, A TOP PRIORITY IS TO ENSURE THAT OUR STUDENT AND EMPLOYEES ARE PRIDE WITH A SAFE EDUCATIONAL ENVIRONMENT. DURING THE SCHOOL YEAR, WE UNDERSTAND THAT STUDENTS MAY GO HOME ALONE, OR MAY GO TO A FRIEND'S HOUSE WHEN THERE'S PARENTS NOT THERE.  

>> WE HAVE ALL HEARD THE TRAGIC STORIES OF TEENAGER WHO FINDS A GUN AND ACCIDENTALLY SHOOTS AND KILLS A FRIEND. A CHILD. FATALLY SHOT BY A YOUNG FAMILY MEMBER WHO FOUND THE GUN IN THEIR HOME. THESE TRAGEDIES DON'T HAVE TO HAPPEN IF WE ALL TAKE JUST A FEW SIMPLE STEPS.  

>> IN AN EFFORT TO KEEP OUR KIDS AND COMMUNITY SAFE, HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY PUBLIC SCHOOLS AND LOCAL LAW ENFORCEMENT ARE JOINING THE BE SMART FOR KIDS INITIATIVE.  

>> BE SMART'S MISSION IS TO REMIND ADULTS WHAT THEY CAN DO TO LIMIT CHILDREN AND TEENAGERS ACCESS TO GUNS. SMART IS AN ACT CROW ANYMORE AND EACH LETTER INCLUDES A CALL TO ACTION.  

>> SECURE ALL GUNS THAT ARE IN YOUR HOME AND VEHICLES.  

>> MODEL RESPONSIBLE BEHAVIOR AROUND GUNS. A. ASK ABOUT THE PRESENCE OF UNSECURED GUNS IN HOMES YOUR CHILD MAY BE VISITING. R. RECOGNIZE THE GUNS IN SUICIDE.  

>> T. TELL YOUR PEERS TO BE SMART.  

>> UNSECURED FIREARMS PROPOSE A SIGNIFICANT RISK FOR OUR STUDENT. EVEN BEYOND GUN VIOLENCE IN SCHOOL. OVER 350 PER YEAR DEATHS HAVE RESULTED FROM UNINTENTIONAL DISCHARGES AT HOME. THESE GUNS NEED TO BE SECURED. THINK ABOUT IT. THAT'S ALMOST ONE PER DAY. THIS CAN BE AVOIDED.  

>> SECURING GUNS WITH SAFE LIVES AN IT BEGINS WITH YOU AT HOME. LET'S BE A PART OF ENSURING OUR FAMILIES ARE INFORMED AND SAFE. FOR MORE RESOURCES, TOOLS AND STRATEGIES ON HOW TO BE SMART, ENCOURAGE YOU TO VISIT BE SMART FOR KIDS.ORG. JOIN US AS WE WORK TO KEEP OUR STUDENTS SAFE ALL YEAR LONG.  

>>Nadia Combs: THANK YOU. AND IT REALLY IS IMPORTANT THAT IT'S A LOT DEEPER, OUR SCHOOL GISTS ARE WORKING ALONGSIDE BE SMART, OFTEN DIFFERENT ORGANIZATIONS, AND IT REALLY IS ABOUT KEEPING THOSE GUNS LOCKED, SO WHEN A CHILD IS FEELING SAD OR IF THEY ARE FEELING VIOLENT OR WHATEVER IS HOOPING, THAT THEY DON'T HAVE ACCESS. UNFORTUNATELY, THIS WEEK WE ARE SEEING THAT OFTEN TOO MUCH, AND WE HAVE TO MAKE SURE THAT WE DO OUR PART TO MAKE SURE THAT OUR STUDENTS ARE SAFE AND THAT EVERYBODY IS SAFE. SO I THANK YOU. I THANK BE SMART, SUCH A GREAT ORGANIZATION. AND I THANK ALL OF YOU V.A NICE EVENING. THIS MEETING IS ADJOURNED.