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School Board No. 623/City Council Meeting Notes
District Center, 1251 County Road B-2 West
June 26, 2012
School Board Chair Kitty Gogins and Superintendent John
Thein welcomed Roseville City Councilmembers to this meeting of the School
Board to discuss collaboration and partnerships between the City and School
School Board Members present: Chair Kitty Gogins; Kaying
Thao; Lisa Edstrom; Erin Azer; William Majerus; and Mona Langston
Roseville City Councilmembers present: Mayor Roe;
Councilmembers Pust and Willmus. Mayor Roe announced that Councilmember
McGehee was unable to attend due to a prior conflict; and that earlier today,
Councilmember Johnson had advised that he would be unable to attend due to
City Manager Malinen was also present; along with many
City Department Heads and school staff members.
Agenda / Key Topics for Discussssion Agenda
Chair Gogins welcomed everyone and introductions were made
of the respective bodies. Chair Gogins noted that City Manager Malinen, Dr.
Thein, Mayor Roe and she had met earlier to develop tonight’s discussion
points and potential areas of new collaborative efforts and partnerships.
Dr. Thein referenced information provided by the City and
School District 623 outlining current collaborative efforts among the City
and School District 623, including activities, events, pathways, and
facilities. Dr. Thein encouraged an open dialogue on potential new ideas to
collaborate; and reviewed some of the areas of support by City departments
In her review of documents in preparation for tonight’s
meeting, Chair Gogins noted how favorably impressed she was with the list of
collaborative efforts to-date. Chair Gogins opined that this was a great
encouragement to her of the collaborative efforts of the School and City
Administration Departments; and expressed her interest in expanding other
areas of partnership. Chair Gogins specifically noted the strong comparisons
between the School Board’s and City’s strategic plans; and how they both
advanced the Imagine Roseville 2025 community visioning process.
One repeated area of comment addressed by Dr. Thein was
the public’s concern in why the City didn’t plow the various school facility
parking lots. Dr. Thein noted that, while this had been considered in the
past, with the other City snowplowing priorities for emergency and overall
community access, it just wasn’t feasible. However, Dr. Thein noted that the
City and School District staff did share partnerships with other ground work
(e.g. mowing); as well as partnering in youth activity programs (e.g.
facilities, fields, and programming needs). Dr. Thein noted that the City
provided great assistance and modeling through the City’s Public Works
Department with asphalt improvement projects, as well as in liaison programs
with the City’s Fire and Police Departments for support and security needs of
the School District.
Chair Gogins introduced this area, noting her interest
specifically in under-represented portions of the community.
Options identified to move forward
School Board Member Langston
expressed her interest in getting a more diverse group engaged in the
community; perhaps during the summer months, rather than during the school
year. Some ideas of Member Langston included “Back to School Nights’ involving
City personnel to provide opportunities for more exposure to local
government; however, she noted this also created an issue in needing
transportation options for many families wishing to attend but not having
access. Ms. Langston noted that not all families attend these evenings; but
it would provide one opportunity to address immigrant or non-immigrant
families still having a fear of law enforcement personnel.
School Board Member Langston
suggested another example she’d observed in another suburb to
“adopt-a-multi-family building or area of the city” and to focus meetings at
those locations in a specific building to build relationships. Ms. Langston
stated that they had found to be successful elsewhere in engaging new
immigrants, and building stronger relationships; as well as getting others in
the community involved in building those relationships.
Chair Gogins suggested that the
City and School Board could jointly host such meetings.
Mayor Roe noted that both the
School District and City could collaboratively identify which buildings made
the most sense to hold such gatherings for outreach (e.g. those having more
frequent code enforcement and/or police department calls). Even if the
events were not joint activities, Mayor Roe opined that the message of the
City and School Board were similar, in getting more community residents
engaged and familiar with local leaders.
Councilmember Willmus noted that
this would engage those emergency service personnel with those groups with
whom they may not typically associate on a daily basis outside of emergency
Chair Gogins noted the
appreciation expressed by parents to the Fire Department for their
presentation at School Readiness events; and opined that similar events could
be held formally and/or informally.
At the request of Councilmember Pust,
Dr. Thein noted the continued presence of the City’s Fire and Police
Departments at Kindergarten Orientation Nights; usually with an emergency
vehicle present and/or CPR demonstrations.
Mayor Roe noted the significant
number of activities held annually in Central Park, and suggested this would
serve as a great opportunity for these community gatherings to connect
residents with resources, either or both School and City) and provide educational
and/or resource materials in an orderly fashion. Mayor Roe noted the
numerous activities held during the Fourth of July at Central park, and potential
for sharing resources between events or concerts, given the number attending
those events. Mayor Roe noted the need to establish some organizational
structure to tie into various events.
Dr. Thein noted that the School
District could also use a float or other presence in the annual Rosefest
Parade. Dr. Thein noted that there were various staff and community leaders
involved already, but not through any organized effort.
School Board Member Edstrom
opined that the Shuttle Bug was a great idea for the parade. Ms. Edstrom
stated that of the list of collaborative efforts already in place, there were
many that she had not been aware of; and appreciated some of the more
pro-active activities. Ms. Edstrom specifically mentioned and expressed
appreciation to the Police Department for their efforts to have lunch with
students at various schools.
Councilmember Pust suggested that
City and School staff, at a minimum, share and compare their event and
activity calendars to identify areas of potential partnership.
School Board Member Thao
concurred, suggesting that they could make themselves available accordingly;
and encouraged making themselves available to the community and meeting them
where they are.
Dr. Thein noted that the City’s
parks were jewels of Roseville, and a great asset. However, Dr. Thein noted
that a lot of families didn’t have access to them or a way to get to them.
Dr. Thein suggested that the School District could work through its transportation
vendor to get people to the park for City-planned activities (e.g. picnic or
meals); and then share programming with families.
Chair Gogins concurred, noting
that any obvious barriers for students and families be removed.
Mayor Roe recognized the work
being done by the City’s Human Rights Commission, on which School Board
Member Thao serves, through their Civic Engagement Task Force efforts to
connect people with their government. Mayor Roe noted that this could be
expanded to include the City and School District, with liaisons already under
discussion; and the need to make those connections not just for the City but
as a community effort.
Councilmember Pust noted the
NextDoor.com program to electronically connect neighborhoods in developing
their own communications devices, currently modeled after park
constellations, but eventually intended to be developed into smaller
subgroups. Councilmember Pust suggested that this be applied to school lists
as well as for their own neighborhood purposes, creating more bonds between
neighbors, thus building stronger neighborhoods and stronger communities.
Chair Gogins suggested
reinforcing schools and other facilities being available as hosting sites for
Councilmember Willmus suggested pursuing opportunities for the City’s
emergency service providers to meet with immigrants or in situations where
those cultures may not be comfortable with those in positions of authority,
whether in a classroom setting or through other options.
Dr. Thein noted the need to not
spread City or School staff too thin; while balancing invitations for
participating in various events or activities.
Chair Gogins noted the suggestion
to have calendars shared to provide opportunities for the respective bodies
to be alert to potential partnership opportunities and better connect to some
of those events.
Councilmember Willmus suggested
tying ELL picnics to the City’s Human Rights Commission efforts.
School Board Member Edstrom
noted, along those lines, new areas of collaboration, such as Movie Nights at
the OVAL, an area of collaboration as the first step with the ELL community;
as well as the Summer Read program; and partnering with the Ramsey County
Library. Ms. Edstrom suggested that, as these efforts are attempted, her
hope was that at some point the entire community could be engaged in the same
book; and hold different guiding discussion or reading groups throughout the
Chair Gogins suggested that the
ELL picnics be broadened to involve the City and the Human Rights Commission
to engage more people. Chair Gogins expressed her interest in connecting
with the ELL and park events; and those opportunities detailed in the
previous discussion for developing relationships.
Dr. Thein reiterated the need to add transportation to that equation.
As previously noted, the
“Roseville Reads” concept was discussed, with two (2) books this year; and
Chair Gogins expressing her hope to make it a broader community-wide effort
Councilmember Pust spoke in
support of making it happen.
Dr. Thein suggested the need for
first aid training for school staff (e.g. training for CPR and other
emergencies); and any opportunities to take advantage of joint training.
As previously noted, School and
City Communication staff were encouraged to share calendars for joint events
and activities that could flow out of various relationships and
Lake Owasso School Site
Chair Gogins noted a DRAFT document prepared by her and
Dr. Thein, identified as “Attachment 1” and entitled, “Lake Owasso School
Property Future Use Guiding Change Document.” Chair Gogins noted that this
was simply intended as a starting point for discussions to build on some
things to consider in “Current context and reality,” Unacceptable Means,” and
Chair Gogins cautioned that the School District’s
recognition that there are seven (7) communities in the district, not just
the City of Roseville, with only half of the students from Roseville; and if
there is any joint City/School District effort, representation from those
other communities needed to be built into that discussion.
On a related note, Mayor Roe clarified that the ball
fields were currently zoned Open Space/Parks; and the building site area was
zoned High Density Residential (HDR).
Discussion included the building site itself and ball
fields, with the School District intending to remove the shell of the
building this fall/winter.
School Board Member Langston expressed concern that a
potential school use had been effectively zoned out by the City; however,
Councilmember Pust clarified that schools were typically allowed uses in most
zoning districts, and if not, a simple rezoning process could be implemented
Mayor Roe concurred, recognizing that there may be a
future school need for the property.
Councilmember Pust asked what the School Board had
discussed to-date, and whether there was a school-based need for the property
in the future.
Dr. Thein advised that reconstructing any new buildings
was not something the School District would be interested in; rather it would
consider recreating current space in existing buildings, such as adding on to
a space. Dr. Thein advised that, under the current economic and funding
restrictions, this was the most economical way to go. Dr. Thein noted that
it was the intent of the School District to demolish the existing Lake Owasso
building and look to other existing sites for any additional space needs.
Chair Gogins concurred, noting that Board consensus was
that the district would only build on what they had, not building anything
School Board Member Edstrom advised that, in the recent
past, there had been some preliminary discussions with the City’s Community
Development staff on space at the Owasso site for intergenerational housing;
with that housing component including shared service space on the first floor
for the School District to provide outreach for students. However, Ms.
Edstrom noted that those were only brainstorming ideas shared in the past and
within that context. Ms. Edstrom stated that she would be interested in once
again reviewing the results of that evaluation.
Councilmember Pust stated that she would be remiss if she
didn’t mention the interest of the North Suburban Senior Council and some
seniors in the community and area in that as a potential site for a senior
Chair Gogins noted that there were lots of ideas; however,
viable options were needed to be developed by a group to determine the best
2-3 uses of the property. Since this is a taxpayer asset, not just a School
District asset, Chair Gogins noted the need to make sure the community
receives the best value possible from the site.
Councilmember Willmus noted that the City’s Housing and
Redevelopment Authority efforts went beyond the “H” for “housing” to the “R”
for redevelopment, and therefore, other avenues could and should be
Mayor Roe opined that it made sense to get the various
Councilmember Pust opined that it was important to
populate the discussion with fiscal accountability to educate the public and
all stakeholders on what was actually possible beyond a wish list.
Otherwise, Councilmember Pust noted the disappointment of the community when
their ideas were sought, and then benched due to unavailable funding.
School Board Member Langston opined that those making up
any potential task force or group of decision-makers represent a broad
perspective of the community and provide some balance in that representation.
City Manager Malinen opined that it would be a priority of
the City to try to preserve the ball fields along with any future use.
Mayor Roe, as well as others at the table from the School
Board and City Council concurred that ball fields be preserved, not
necessarily in their same location, but at the same site if at all possible
to ensure there was no net loss of ball fields.
Councilmember Willmus noted that the Parks and Recreation
Department served the same broader community as School District 623.
Further discussion included the scope of a potential task
force; realistic nature of the proposed timeframe, with consensus to expand
that timeframe by another three (3) months to September of 2013, for
completion before November of 2013.
Mayor Roe noted that this would be more realistic and
allow time to get a joint task force formed. Mayor Roe reiterated
Councilmember Pust’s suggestion to add “Financial Viability” to the chart to
consider what the public wanted, but how to pay for that as well.
Dr. Thein noted that the property was not currently on the
tax rolls for the School District or the City; and suggested that options
could be flexible for any future purchase, not necessarily as a cash
purchase. Dr. Thein opined that time was of an advantage, allowing the City
and School District to work over time for the benefit of the City and any
future revenue generated.
Specific to formation of a task force, School Board Member
Thao questioned if it was the intent to contract with a third party for a
professional Needs Assessment and/or facilitation or to depend on community
Dr. Thein stated that it was his intent that it be done
internally by City and School District staff to provide a strong component of
competent professionalism from those respective resources and already in
place in both organizations. Dr. Thein opined that otherwise it would be
Discussion on actual formation of the group included
various scenarios, including: staff liaisons for the School District and each
of the seven (7) communities in the District; recognition of all cities as
part owners in this piece of property, whether living within the boundaries
of Roseville or not, and making sure they’re involved if they so desire; how
to keep the membership representative while also keeping it manageable; Dr.
Thein’s suggestion for a task force not to exceed 10-12 members; and opening
the involvement for each City to their discretion, whether to have that
representative be an elected official, a citizen at large, or someone else to
Based on past experience, Chair Gogins anticipated that
not all communities would choose to participate in that representation.
Mayor Roe questioned if it was the intent to have a
certain number of representatives at the table from each city or to have some
of those cities band together with one representative.
Councilmember Pust sought clarification on the specific
charge of the task force, or the authority they were to be given.
Chair Gogins, referencing the guiding change document, suggested
that the task force provide two options, with that document serving as their
guidance, along with those revisions and additions from tonight’s
discussion. Chair Gogins noted the intent was for them to define 2-4 recommended
options to the decision-making body.
Councilmember Pust cautioned the need for a clear charge
for the task force so they don’t put in six (6) months of work and anticipate
having the blessing of the School District and City Council without further
deliberation by those bodies.
School Board Member Langston opined that the School Board
and City Council have final selection authority of an option; with final
School Board Member Edstrom questioned whether it should
be only the School Board as that authority, since by including the City of
Roseville, it could be perceived to exclude the other communities that are
part of the District. Ms. Edstrom noted that, when originally assessed in
2005, specific groups looked at each area and held public discussions
throughout the community before bringing their recommendations forward.
Dr. Thein noted that the City of Roseville retained the
final zoning authority as well. Dr. Thein further noted that it was not the
intent to have this task force in a room by themselves during this process;
but to have them out in the community doing outreach and seeking community
consensus on the best use for the property; and his intent to depend on the
City’s Housing and Redevelopment Authority to provide guidance and expertise
throughout that process, and to be actively involved.
Councilmember Pust noted that the intent of a scoping
document should always engage the community’s input.
Chair Gogins clarified that this was the intent.
School Board Member and City Housing and Redevelopment
Authority Member Majerus suggested that the Imagine Roseville 2025
community visioning be used as a template to build upon and involve the
community. Mr. Majerus suggested that the process be provided by the City
and revisited to review how that entire process came together.
Chair Gogins concurred, and suggested adding a review of
that process to the DRAFT document.
Mayor Roe recommended that the Parks and Recreation Master
Plan be used, as it essentially built upon the Imagine Roseville 2025
process; and opined that it was the best effort he had ever encountered.
School Board Member Langston suggested using all of those
resources, and making it broader than just using the Housing and
Redevelopment Authority (HRA).
Further discussion ensued on the potential make up of the
twelve (12) member task force: such as one City Councilmember from each
community in the District; one School Board member; one Parks and Recreation
Commissioner; one HRA member, etc..
Mayor Roe questioned how many citizens were intended on
the task force, opining that the more the better.
Councilmember Pust suggested asking people of their
interest before making a decision, especially if that contact was started
during the summer months.
Chair Gogins clarified that she was simply attempting to
seek member interest, whether citizens or elected officials, or those already
serving on various commissions.
School Board Member Langston noted the need to consider
community perceptions; with many preferring that City Council and/or School
Board members should serve in an ex-officio capacity.
Chair Gogins suggested that the parameters not be defined
at this time, but asked that Dr. Thein and City Manager Malinen work to
determine how to best get good representation, including how to engage those
Dr. Thein clarified that the direction to him and City
Manager Malinen was to develop a specific charge for the task force, develop
a timeline, and bring that recommendation back to both bodies; with
anticipated kick-off later this summer or early fall.
Mayor Roe suggested that, between now and then, as
community representatives, City Councilmembers and School Board Members
communicate throughout the community this future formation of the task force.
School Board Member Azer encouraged everyone to get others
involved, not the typical group of participants.
Discussion included any duplication of services evidenced,
with none readily identified.
School Board Member Edstrom advised that she had
personally done a comprehensive study of services of the City and School
District last year and found nothing duplicated for services or events.
Councilmember Pust opined that, more pertinent to a
community discussion, is that the senior populations was encouraging more
emphasis from the City than in the past for senior programming.
Councilmember Pust noted that this led into a review of how to respond to
those in the community not being served by resources and/or programs already
in place; and presentations to the City’s elected officials and District in
getting involved, and how that may develop in the future. Councilmember Pust
noted other agencies and members in the community considering that survey
information; and the work of the Senior Council under its new co-presidents
in the very near future (Roger Toogood and Jan Parker); and the extensive
work to-date by Sarah Bursell and a potential grant applications and funding
Councilmember Pust advised that she was unsure how much
discussions had evolved from that point and until a retreat planned in August
and fall meetings of the North Suburban Senior Council, this discussion could
be put aside until fall depending on the results of discussions at that
School Board Member Edstrom concurred with Councilmember
Pust; noting a comprehensive needs assessment completed several years ago as
part of a grant application in conjunction with other agencies to the state
for community funds to develop a senior program. While the grant was
unsuccessful, Ms. Edstrom noted that it provided really concise demographic
data and identified needs and current opportunities. Ms. Edstrom advised
that it resurrected the idea of a community for a lifetime concept, striving
toward a goal of sustainability, walkability, and livability from the cradle
to the grave.
Councilmember Pust noted that the City of Roseville was
the only City providing support to the North Suburban Senior Council’s shuttle
bug transportation service at this time.
Mayor Roe concurred, noting that the North Suburban Senior
Council (NSSC) survey may identify gaps; however, he suggested that since
that survey is in process, with results pending, this discussion may be
Chair Gogins concurred, noting that the next step would be
to have the NSSC make a presentation to the City and School Board on gaps and
opportunities. Chair Gogins expressed the District’s interest in working as
a partner with the NSSC in determining community needs and resources.
Dr. Thein expressed concern from the District’s
perspective of the need for senior programming, with only Roseville, Saint
Paul, and Falcon Heights currently have strong advocates for the senior
population. Dr. Thein opined that he was interested in getting everyone
involved and to broaden that senior advocacy and involvement among other
communities and draw in additional members (e.g. including the communities of
Little Canada, Maplewood, Shoreview and other cities in the District). Dr.
Thein noted the extensive changes over the last twenty (20) years in the
needs of seniors and the entirely different world now and into the future,
with a more active senior population. Dr. Thein noted that one of the areas
this was most evidenced was in congregate dining, with that having almost
disappeared; and home delivered meals only being sought from those ages 85 or
older. Dr. Thein expressed his personal interest in receiving feedback on
the gaps and opportunities available.
Councilmember Pust opined that the NSSC was going out to
those other cities, and would help educate them. On behalf of the NSSC,
Councilmember Pust expressed interest in partnering with the District and
Cities; and offered to relay that message. Councilmember Pust also recognized
the considerable programming for seniors done through the Parks and
Mayor Roe noted that there were definitely things needed
in planning for seniors, especially as the City’s demographics continue to
change; with younger families as well as more of a senior population.
Councilmember Pust concurred, noting the need not only to
provide walking trails for an active senior population, and families; but
also to provide access for those needing to go to and from the grocery
Chair Gogins recognized the respective strategic plans of
the City and District; and sought additional areas to help both bodies
achieve their plans.
City Manager Malinen noted that the City had provided the City Council’s
strategic directions, the document from which City Departments would work
from and driving its strategic planning and budgeting for the next biennial
budget (2014/2015), with specific actions to further them and identify
resources during 2013 for that upcoming biennial budget period.
Mayor Roe noted that documents provided also a foundation
on which the directive had been built, with the Mission Statement of the
organization and trying to capture community aspirations driving attempted
accomplishments and derived from the Imagine Roseville 2025 community
visioning process, the Parks and Recreation Master Plan process; the Comprehensive
Plan update, with those statements and goals from those efforts synthesized.
Mayor Roe noted those community aspirations certainly did not exclude the
schools, since there were many areas of overlap intended to provide a
framework for work on specific objectives over the next 2-3 years.
Chair Gogins stated that, in her review of the City’s
website, she was impressed with and previously unaware of the depth of ways
the City fostered youth leadership and development; opining that she had
never considered that linkage before.
School Board Member Edstrom addressed the School District’s
technology needs; and sought clarification about access throughout and across
the community for students and families when they were at home after school.
Ms. Edstrom noted her interest was related to equity, since the District
expected a lot from its students and families related to internet access.
Dr. Thein shared aspects of the District’s and City’s current
partnerships, as well as those anticipated for the future, with and through
the City and making a great difference in the reliability of the internet
system for staff and students.
Dr. Thein further addressed the Board’s work on its Mission Statement and
values that was permeating the District from administrators to staff and
students, with each holding the other accountable, and impacting how they
treated each other and how they worked together. Dr. Thein advised that each
was working hard to be models for the younger generation. While recognizing
the great work done by the City in their visioning and planning documents,
Dr. Thein clarified that the School District also had a different,
student-based focus to provide education for all ages.
City Manager Malinen advised that it was the City’s policy
to connect all of its facilities, as well as those of the School District,
then its business partners. Mr. Malinen reviewed various Wi-Fi and fiber
network opportunities; with city-wide opportunities not yet available, since
that was a very challenging, and often unsuccessful aspect. Mr. Malinen
reviewed the current renegotiation between the City and Comcast through the
North Suburban Cable Commission to continue providing public, educational and
government access without charge through that renegotiated agreement.
Dr, Thein sought assurances that the School District also has
a voice in those negotiations to ensure their needs were well-represented.
Dr. Thein noted that any changes created a concern on their part, since it
could have a major impact on their operations and services.
City Manager Malinen advised that the Access Corporation
did a fairly good job of seeking input through their focus groups and
development of the Needs Assessment; and noted that Mayor Roe served on their
Board of Directors.
Dr. Thein addressed his major areas of concern, including
future facility needs balanced with changing demographics and deteriorating
and/or aging buildings and long-term impacts for the City and School District
based on changing demographics, requiring awareness and collaboration.
Chair Gogins addressed an area of concern for her related
to unintentional institutionalized racism; and her desire to provide a
welcoming and inclusive environment, and taking opportunities to address this
often challenging and often overlooked issue.
Dr. Thein concurred, noting that the School Board, and
probably the City Council as well, saw most of the speakers before it to be
95-99% Caucasian. However, Dr. Thein noted that the diversity was in the
community. Therefore, Dr. Thein concurred that it was necessary to find
informal ways to get the community together and interact; and opined that it
would make a really big difference for the School District and the City to
make those groups feel more comfortable dealing with the School District
and/or City administration.
Mayor Roe opined that it was not always just those from
different cultures who were uncomfortable working with local government; and
sometimes just those new to the community or not used to understanding the
workings of that government structure. Mayor Roe noted that there were types
of efforts that everyone could do; and opined that it made sense for both bodies
to focus on those areas, and build on the connections made over the last few
years by finding even more opportunities.
Dr. Thein opined that it was a blessing to have the current
diversity of membership on the School Board; noting that it made the body
look at things from different perspectives.
Councilmember Pust suggested that communication efforts
continue between the bodies, whether through staff or elected officials sitting
in on discussions or participating in workshops.
At the suggestion of Dr. Thein, City Councilmembers and
staff were invited to participate in the School District’s diversity
School Board Member Azer referenced the City’s strategic
plan and community engagement efforts, and suggested taking advantage of
those cultural liaisons already identified as good leaders for those areas
with problem multi-family housing and neighborhood issues.
Councilmember Willmus suggested that Ms. Azer’s suggestion
was definitely something to build on, especially as the City discussed and
considered rental licensing and beyond; using those liaisons as a tool for
Mayor Roe concurred, noting that connections into those
communities through both the School Board and City Council and respective
staffs by comparing notes and community contacts could provide an informal
flow of information on things that needed work, prior to it moving up to the
School Board Member Edstrom asked that the current high
school youth leadership program not be lost in the shuffle; since it provided
a huge opportunity for that leadership to bubble up in high school students,
and created various alliances initiated by students to better understand
their respective cultures and build broader understanding (e.g. restorative
justice program at the high school level). Ms. Edstrom suggested that there
were ways for expansion beyond the high school and also get young people
engaged in the community; and add to their grass roots support and focus on
leadership at staff and board levels, as well as youth.
School Board Member Langston concurred with the way the
discussion and direction was moving; noting the significant partnerships and
learning among groups; opining that she would like to see that as a priority,
since the more diversity was understood, the better the community and school
district could be represented.
School Board Member Majerus suggested that the District
and City Communications Department staff develop and community those
partnership opportunities to the Board and City Council; and provide leads
for resources for the community.
Councilmember Pust asked that the City’s HRA staff be
included as well.
Dr. Thein noted that the last facility study for the District
had been performed in 1992, and as things continue to age, the District would
be force to make decision and keep the lines of community open, including any
potential changes in facilities or outdoor space to ensure safe, efficient
facilities are available to the District as well as the City. Dr. Thein
noted that those discussions would be coming forward in the near future.
Mayor Roe advised that the City had already gone through that process over
the last year through their review of Capital Improvement Plan (CIP) needs
over the next twenty (20) years; and noted that it was currently considering
an Asset Management Software program to manage those facilities. Mayor Roe
offered to share the City’s expertise in those areas with the School District.
Dr. Thein noted that this spring the Board had indicated
that they wanted a review of facilities and future needs; and opined that the
availability of the City’s expertise would be welcomed.
Mayor Roe noted the value of the District’s vision cards
with their strategic plan; and suggested the City use such a method to keep
its Performance Management and Strategic Planning in the forefront. Mayor
Roe noted that this was a way the City could learn from the District’s example;
and encouraged City staff to keep in touch with District staff.
Fairview Community Center
Chair Gogins addressed the materials detailing the uses
from early childhood to seniors based on square footages at the Fairview
Dr. Thein noted that the School District used to lease out
more space than it operated as its population shrunk; with significant lease
revenue received annually. Through those revenues, Dr. Thein noted that the
Fairview facility had paid for itself; and over the years while other
buildings had been sold off, the Fairview facility had seen more use as a
District building, and used for intergenerational programming versus
leasing. Dr. Thein invited tours of the facility to become aware of those
multiple and varied uses. In private discussion among the Board to-date on
potential community center use, Dr. Thein opined that the Fairview facility
was located in an area of the City abutting Falcon Heights, Lauderdale, and
had great access off major highways. Dr. Thein noted that the facility was
basically being used as a community center without being identified as such.
City Manager Malinen reviewed the recently completed Parks
and Recreation Master Plan and the next phase to consider a community center,
initiating community discussions about the needs of Roseville and surrounding
communities. At the request of Chair Gogins, Mr. Malinen advised that the
location for a community center would be part of that community engagement
Councilmember Willmus noted that, over the years, many
different locations had been considered.
Dr. Thein asked that the School District not be forgotten
in the process.
At the request of Mayor Roe, Dr. Thein addressed the
District’s plans for the Fairview site, intended to continue to be operated
as a community services and intergenerational facility. Dr. Thein opined
that he didn’t see a huge change in the way the building currently operated.
However, Dr. Thein noted that facility needs would need to be addressed,
based on the District’s resources; but over the long haul (e.g. 25 years) he
couldn’t imagine the same building in the same spot being used the same;
opining that it just couldn’t be part of that long-term vision.
School Board Member Thao noted the perception among some
students and community members that the Fairview facility was not as well
kept as the High School; and the “worst” kids were sent to it. Ms. Thao
noted that it was an issue with equity perspectives.
Dr. Thein concurred, noting that future discussions at the
School District level would need to include how to upgrade facilities for the
District as well as the community.
Mayor Roe and Dr. Thein observed that this timing seemed
to mesh with current discussions and planning.
Councilmember Willmus opined that a community center was a
definite partnership opportunity between the School District and City.
School Board Member Langston opined that, while it was
good to agree that the Fairview facility as seen as a community building, it
was prudent to also see it as a school facility. Ms. Langston opined that
she wanted assurances that the discussions stay grounded in what the purpose
is and how that challenges classroom achievement groups, specifically that
those partnerships include classroom sizes and needs.
Community Pathways B-2 and Other Routes to Schools
School Board Members and Councilmembers concurred on the
need to improve safety and increase pathways and sidewalks throughout the
community, as well as partnering in how to prioritize those needs city-wide.
School Board Member Langston expressed her concern, beyond
County Road B-2 to areas along Lexington experiencing excessive speeds while
pedestrian are attempting to cross. Ms. Langston addressed sidewalks along
only one side of main school routes; better lighting needs on major and side streets;
and partnering on resources to accomplish them.
School Board Member Azer addressed seniors wanting a
walkable community; in addition to addressing childhood obesity; opining that
the community had changed from the original “car town” built in the 1950’s.
Councilmember Pust briefly reviewed the history of the
County Road B-2 pathway development; and noted that the City was willing, and
at one time federal dollars had been received to help fund it; however, the
community, or neighborhood was not interested due to infringing in their
yards and/or assessment costs. Councilmember Pust assured everyone that the
City Council was and had been definitely interested in addressing this
serious safety issue.
Councilmember Willmus noted that, while the lighting part
had not necessarily been addressed, it wasn’t that long ago that the City had
attempted to pursue this, but neighbors not interested due to assessments or
front yard issues. Councilmember Willmus noted that this was a huge part of
the Parks and Recreation Master Plan process.
Councilmember Pust noted that, due to federal funding
requirements, the pathway was considered too wide.
Mayor Roe noted that pathways were consistently highly
rated and financially supported in community surveys; and suggested that the
City shouldn’t have to rely on grants to install them, if the City identified
priorities, which had been done through the Master Plan process, if the
community was willing to financially support those pathways independent of
any grant process. Mayor Roe opined that this was an area of partnership
between the bodies to help citizens understand the importance of pathways.
From his personal perspective, Mayor Roe noted the many missing connections
between bus stops and multi-family housing throughout the community for those
dependent on public transit, but unable to walk safely form their homes to
those bus stops.
City Manager Malinen noted that the City’s next phase of
its CIP would be for pathways and maintenance of those pathways to program those
dollars into the operating budget. In a few months, Mr. Malinen advised that
the City would be in a much better position to have that discussion, once it
rose from the staff level to City Council level.
Dr. Thein recognized the work of the City’s Public Works, Environment and
Transportation Commission and thanked the City for having Jan Vanderwall
involved in that community; and what they had accomplished and put in place
to-date. Dr. Thein offered the District’s willingness to work with the City
in making more pathways and walkways a reality and to make the community
School Board Member Edstrom expressed her appreciation of
area park amenities, noting her recent discovery of Villa Park, and its
beautiful and private setting in an urban community.
Dr. Thein concurred, noting that Roseville was a great
place to live, and thanked the City Council for making it so; opining that
there was no other place to live but Roseville, and no other place to get an
education than in District 623.
City Manager Malinen concurred that Roseville was a great
place to live and a great place to learn. Mr. Malinen recognized the City’s
most recent Human Rights student essay winner; noting that the City of
Roseville essays had won nine (9) out of twelve (12) contest years.
School Board Member and City Human Rights Commission (HRC)
Member Thao noted that the City of Roseville had been asked to host next
year’s statewide essay event.
Chair Gogins reviewed the discussion points from tonight
and next steps.
Mayor Roe suggested that a working group or subcommittee
of the City Council and School Board be developed as a very constructive way
to delve into more detailed areas rather than in a large group; and suggested
that such a subcommittee be set up over the next few months for that purpose.
Chair Gogins opined that this was a great opportunity to
work in partnership, and such discussions should occur more often.
Councilmember Willmus suggested getting together as a work
group more frequently.
Dr. Thein advised that a record of the notes would be
typed and forwarded to all; and asked that he be alerted of any revisions or
Dr. Thein and Chair Gogins thanked the City Council for
their attendance, as well as City and School District staff for sitting in
for the discussions.
The City Council left the School Board meeting after
approximately 2 hours and fifteen minutes of discussion, as the School Board
moved on to other items on their agenda.