CSTA BOARD MINUTES
December 5, 2009
Attendance and Quorum
The following Board Members were present: Jeff Bradbury, Deb
Farkas, Michelle French, Dean Gilbert, Jim Jones, Rick Pomeroy,
Sue Pritchard, Bonny Ralston, Donna Ross, Greg Schultz, Marian
Murphy-Shaw, Tim Williamson, Valerie Joyner, and Karen Withey-Smith.
A quorum was present. Also in attendance was Executive Director
Christine Bertrand. Tim Williamson served as Chair, and Marian
Murphy-Shaw served as Secretary.
The Chair called the meeting to order at 9:09 a.m. and announced
that the meeting was held pursuant to written notice to all
members of the Board of Directors of the Corporation. A copy
of the notice was ordered entered into the minutes book following
the minutes of the meeting. The Chair reviewed the protocols
for the meeting.
Approval of Agenda
Item 5.6 was added to the agenda. Jim Jones moved the agenda
be approved as amended, seconded by Rick Pomeroy; motion carried.
Approval of Minutes
Rick Pomeroy moved that the minutes of the September 26, 2009
Board of Directors meeting be approved. Seconded by Dean Gilbert;
Dean Gilbert asked the board to support action by CSTA to
enhance the PAEMST application process and encourage more
applicants. A list of suggestions was presented for consideration
and discussion. It was suggested that a model application
posted by past recipients may be one low cost suggestion and
is something CSTA can do that the PAEMST cannot. Discussion
that followed addressed a concern about liability with videos
being posted online and the suggestion that videos might best
be used only at a conference workshop. It was agreed that
promoting things like PAEMST and National Board certification
would support the work to address mentoring professionals
within the CSTA membership. Tim Williamson suggested that
Dean work with a small committee to develop some ideas for
CSTA’s involvement. Bonny Ralston and Sue Pritchard volunteered
to work on this with Dean.
2009 Science Education Conference Wrap-Up
Jim Jones reported that approximately 1300 people attended
the conference and that the many positive comments received
from participants made this conference a success, or as a
board member echoed the “little conference that could.” Jim
reported that the dine-around went very well, and that, although
the conversation tables were not full, there is potential
for them to become popular if they are refined. Jim reported
that the stargazing event went well, though food sales were
low, and that those who used the tech room benefitted, although
the signage was a concern. Jim reported that there were overall
drops in courses/sessions, reducing offerings to some degree
Board members reported that the recognitions to Bill Ritz
and Zack Taylor were of special note. It was reported that
the Payne event was well-attended, and that first-timers also
had praise for the welcoming, helpful air of the conference.
Appreciation was expressed to Christine Bertrand, Jessica
Lewis, Jim Jones, and all, who were impressive in their dedication
and contributions to the positive feeling that was felt throughout
It was suggested that some of the criteria for selecting presenters
may be a little narrow, some quality workshops might have
been missed for lack of a way to categorize them during the
application process. Some sessions which support the practice
of teaching rather than content, such as “surviving the first
year,” might win CSTA future members and help retain teachers
in the profession, even though such sessions do not easily
get a “check” on the presenter application. This might inform
the next conference committee. Some consideration might be
given as to how the screening will address this and might
help in meeting teacher needs we are hearing about from the
Tim Williamson commended everyone who went above and beyond
to make the conference a success. Jim Jones closed with thanks
to all and especially Christine and Jessica.
2010 Science Education Conference
Rick Pomeroy presented a revised proposed format for the 2010
conference, intended to promote the idea of a three-day, as
opposed to a four-day, conference, which might facilitate
teachers getting approval to travel to the event if one less
sub-day is requested. It addresses exhibitor and participant
needs regarding time and also adjusts speaker and luncheon
schedules. Overall appreciation was expressed for the re-working
that maintains a quality conference, and support for including
STEM as a focus topic was expressed. It was suggested that
a truly powerful speaker would be necessary to keep people
present on a Sunday.
Dean Gilbert moved that
the board accept the proposed 2010 conference schedule
with inclusion of a pre-conference STEM event on Thursday
and that substantial financial resources be allocated to
secure a Sunday speaker of highest quality.
Seconded by Sue Pritchard. Discussion included concern that
the motion was too prescriptive in requiring a STEM pre-conference
event. A request was made to simplify the motion as either
an acceptance or not of the proposal, leaving the motion less
restrictive. It was requested that the motion simply state
that there “be a pre-conference event.”
An amendment to the motion was accepted by Dean and Sue to
the board accept all seven recommendations in the proposed
2010 conference schedule, including that there be a Thursday
Motion carried, 14-1-0.
Policy and Organizational Issues
Membership Committee Recommendations
Dean Gilbert reported that the membership committee will be
reviewing the feedback from focus groups held up and down
the state to provide input to guide the committee work.
Dean presented a marketing message promoting professionalism
and suggested ideas for where it might be used. Dean Gilbert
the board approve the marketing message as presented.
Seconded by Valerie Joyner. Discussion included concern that
it might be mistaken as CTA, as the word “science” is absent
from the message and only those familiar with CSTA would recognize
it. It was mentioned that the message’s intended use or expected
next steps is still not clear. Dean clarified that the uses
might be illustrated signs, t-shirts, buttons, etc to make
the message visible at the conference. He suggested that the
artwork might be more science-oriented. Christine Bertrand
reminded the board that a budget would need to be attached
to this. Dean indicated he will take the input back to the
committee for further work.
Motion and second withdrawn.
Christine Bertrand reported on the common core standards component
of Race to the Top to the attention of the board. She mentioned
that also in the California Race to the Top proposal are STEM
credentialing and UC/CSU/CC being allowed to use the database
to track graduates’ wage data. She reported that the linking
of teacher evaluation to student performance is still in the
application and is a big part of the points awarded to each
state’s application. Concern was expressed about the lack
of science and history in the realignment to common core standards
and about teacher evaluations being related to tests that
do not have multiple measures or include all content areas.
It was suggested that CSTA oppose the legislation. Christine
noted that CSTA would not be the only group to oppose elements
of RTTT, as ACSA, CSBA, CTA, and PTA have noted elements of
concern. Christine reported that the understanding among state
leaders is that when ESEA (Elementary and Secondary Education
Act) is re-authorized, the RTTT criteria will be applied.
Concern was voiced that we are rushing forward for funds rather
than addressing actual needs of California.
Board Meeting Materials
Christine asked members if receiving board meeting materials
electronically is working. The board reported that, overall,
it is working, but that all materials should be in the same
format; a preference for format submissions in PDF was recommended.
The board agreed that this system should be used for face-to-face
meetings in the future, as well, so board members will need
to either print out the materials or bring a laptop to meetings.
Honorary Membership in CSTA
A proposal to formalize honorary memberships to CSTA was presented
by Christine Bertrand.
Deb Farkas moved that
the board accept the resolution on honorary memberships
Seconded by Bonny Ralston; motion unanimously carried.
Resolution Regarding Electronic Communications
Christine Bertrand reported that plans to hold the 2010 elections
electronically may be in jeopardy, as, according to our attorney,
we need to get affirmative consent to communicate electronically
from each member in a form that can be audited. Christine
indicated that it is unlikely that we would receive consents
from most members, for a variety of reasons. A variety of
means for receiving consents were discussed, including an
e-blast with request for a return email or through the member
application/renewal process. Christine reported that our attorney
indicated a “passive” consent, such as checking a consent
box on our website, or requesting members to return a revocation
of consent if they do not want to receive e-communications,
would not be acceptable. It was suggested that, until a resolution
to the situation can be worked out, we not hold the next election
electronically. Christine estimated that approximately $4000
could be saved by going to electronic voting.
Rick Pomeroy moved that
the board proceed with the 2010 election using paper ballots.
Seconded by Michelle French; motion unanimously carried.
Tim reminded board members that any form of sponsorship has
to go to the board for formal consideration. Cal State Fullerton
recently asked about sponsorship of an event; Karen Withey-Smith
will pursue this for further clarification. Sue Pritchard
noted that CTA is supporting the CLMS conference and should
support the CSTA conference as well. It was suggested that
Lisa Marroquin be approached about this.
Tim Williamson reported that he will be attending the California
Green Schools meeting.
Greg Schultz referenced the financial report sent by email
on November 5th and reported that, overall, we were on the
plus side for first three months of the year.
Executive Director’s Report
Christine Bertrand indicated she had nothing additional to
Michelle French asked what the Central Valley region members
can do to help the organization locally. It was indicated
that receiving materials for events just requires giving Christine
a couple of weeks notice.
Dean Gilbert shared that he had an opportunity to connect
with INTEL in California.
Sue Pritchard reported on follow up conversations she had
with engineering and Intel and Imagine It Project. She reported
that she was invited to speak at CSBA and contacted a K-20
technology member at the event who expressed interest in sponsoring
Valerie Joyner reported that she is meeting with contacts
in Region 1 and thanked board members for making her feel
welcomed. Tim welcomed Valerie to her first meeting with us.
Christine Bertrand thanked Diana Takenaga, whose report is
in the board packet, for attending a STEM meeting on behalf
Tim Williamson mentioned that details for the March 6, 2010
meeting are still being worked out.
Meeting adjourned at 11:25 a.m.