SENATE COMMITTEE ON EDUCATION AND WORKFORCE

 

 

February 07, 2005                                                                                                   Hearing Room D

3:00 P.M.                                                                                                                     Tapes  14 - 17

Corrected 10/19/05

MEMBERS PRESENT:         Sen. Vicki Walker, Chair

Sen. Charles Starr, Vice-Chair

Sen. Ryan Deckert

Sen. Jeff Kruse

Sen. Bill Morrisette

 

STAFF PRESENT:                 Marjorie Taylor, Committee Administrator

Dawn Tuso, Committee Assistant

 

MEASURES/ISSUES HEARD:        

SB 415 – Public Hearing

Proposal to Consolidate Educational Service Districts - Informational Meeting

 

These minutes are in compliance with Senate and House Rules.  Only text enclosed in quotation marks reports a speaker’s exact words.  For complete contents, please refer to the tapes.

 

TAPE/#

Speaker

Comments

TAPE 14, A

005

Chair Walker

Calls meeting to order at 3:01 p.m.

015

Chair Walker

States that the committee will extend the meeting to take public testimony from 5:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.

025

Chair Walker

Opens public hearing on SB 415.

SB 415 – PUBLIC HEARING

028

Sen. Ringo

Testifies in support of SB 415. States that there are a number of structural problems with the way that ESDs are set up.  Urges committee to look at the structural problems of ESDs. Declares that something significant needs to be done with ESDs this session.

055

Chair Walker

Asks if he takes ownership of bringing SB 415 to the committee.

060

Sen. Ringo

Replies, yes.

065

Chair Walker

Mentions road trip to Douglas County ESD Friday, February 11, 2005. Closes public hearing and opens informational meeting on the proposal to consolidate ESDs.

PROPOSAL TO CONSOLIDATE EDUCATION SERVICE DISTRICTS - INFORMATIONAL MEETING

075

James Sager

Governors Office. Introduces presentation.

083

Vickie Fleming

Deputy Superintendent, Oregon Department of Education (DOE). Submits informational packet on Education Service Districts (ESD) including a map of the ESDs, a handout on ESD resolution services/funding, and the ESD memorandum of understanding (EXHIBIT A). Mentions reorganization efforts of the DOE. Talks about policy development and regulation of money.  Discusses service delivery and compliance.

120

Chair Walker

Asks if the Federal Government gives money to perform those functions.

123

Fleming

Replies yes and explains in detail.

135

Fleming

Discusses performance management and expectations. Talks about partnership with ESDs and actions taken. Mentions submitted testimony. Talks about equity of services and assistance to schools statewide around school improvement activities.

175

Chair Walker

Refers to submitted testimony. Asks about the paragraph in the memorandum of understanding stating that “the specific details of decision making, membership, charge, logistics and other such items is outlined in the council charter (to be developed).”  Asks if the charter has been developed. Refers to line stating “representatives from each ESD and from ODE will sign the final document.” Asks if everyone has signed the document.

182

Fleming

Answers that all ESDs have signed it except for two.

187

Chair Walker

Asks for clarification on the participation of the two ESDs that have not signed.

190

Fleming

Responds that their boards are still considering the proposal.

191

Chair Walker

Asks about the development of the charter mentioned in the memorandum.

193

Fleming

Answers.

195

Sen. Kruse

Asks what percentage of the data collected has nothing to do with federal regulations.

200

Fleming

Answers that all of the data collected is a result of the requirements of No Child Left Behind.

205

Sen. Kruse

Shares thought that the DOE was collecting data that was not tied to federal requirements.

215

Fleming

States that the DOE does have state mandates in addition to federal requirements. Explains. Offers information regarding the mandates.

225

Sen. Kruse

States that he would like to see the information.

235

Sen. Morrisette

Asks about local district requirements.

240

Fleming

Asks for clarification.  

245

Sen. Morrisette

Clarifies question.

248

Fleming

Agrees and responds in detail.

275

Sager

States that the Governor’s focus on efficiencies has been to make sure that every dollar used in the education system goes to services for students. States that inside the current revenue structure, there is not an adequate budget for the K-12, Community Colleges or Oregon University System (OUS). Discusses action plan.

320

Chair Walker

Comments that spending money on airplanes, excessive travel, Las Vegas parties, and cars for ESD personnel are probably not dollars going to students. Asks opinion.

330

Sager

Replies that many of the things mentioned would probably come under question as to whether they provide direct services to students.

335

Fleming

Mentions the accumulative listing of all of the contracts for direct services that the DOE currently has with the ESDs that has been submitted for the record (EXHIBIT B).

345

Sen. Deckert

Asks if the  Governor is willing to compromise.

350

Sager

Replies, yes.

355

Sen. Deckert

Asks what services the ESDs provide that otherwise would not be possible. Asks why the money is not given to the school districts so that they could offer the services themselves.

380

Sager

Addresses the question in detail.

405

Sen. Deckert

Asks why there is not a fee for service type of arrangement. Asks about argument in opposition to going in that direction.

TAPE 15, A

005

Fleming

Responds and explains the necessity of ESDs in detail.

035

Ozzie Rose

Oregon Association of Education Service Districts (OAESD). Discusses the number of studies done on ESDs since 1965 and the outcomes. Talks about a legislative taskforce that was developed in 1999 and the recommendations that came out of it.

070

Rose

Reiterates that the number of ESDs is not a new issue.

100

Rose

Brings up question of whether the role that ESDs play in supporting local districts in their task of serving all children can be strengthened.

120

Rose

Talks about mergers and reducing personnel.  Discusses two questions asked of ESDs.

150

Rose

Refers to the ESD regional service delivery model submitted for the record (EXHIBIT C).

Discusses:

  • Programs for children with special needs
  • Technology support for school districts
  • School improvement services for districts
  • Administrative and program support
  • Implementation
  • Recommended criteria for restructuring Educational Service Districts

205

Rose

Discusses the criteria:

  • Geography
  • Minimum and maximum number of districts served
  • A staffing model to provide the core services as determined by the regional service plan
  • A minimum number of students served

245

Chair Walker

Asks about the number of ESDs represented and questions the ten ESDs that were unrepresented.  

255

Rose

Responds.

275

Sen. Deckert

Asks about the composition of the ESD committee and whether or not he thinks that they were able to make the best and most appropriate decisions.

300

Rose

Responds.

325

Sen. Morrisette

Comments that the committee seemed to be made up of experts in the field. Believes that there will be changes made based on best practices.

350

Rose

Responds.

368

Dennis Dempsey

Superintendent, High Desert ESD. Introduces himself.

372

Jim Mabbott

Superintendent, NW Regional ESD. Introduces himself.

375

Jonathon Hill

Superintendent, Douglas ESD. Introduces himself.

378

Ron Hitchcock

Superintendent, Lane ESD. Introduces himself.

380

Dempsey

Discusses the composition of the organization. Talks about the criteria. Mentions core services. Discusses the reorganization of ESDs.

430

Hill

Talks about limitation. Discusses a uniform system.

TAPE 14, B

005

Hill

Continues discussion on ESDs. Talks about core funding and budget. States concern with directing money through districts to manage ESDs.

040

Chair Walker

Closes informational meeting and opens public hearing on SB 415.

SB 415 – PUBLIC HEARING

060

Marjorie Taylor

Committee Administrator. Gives brief overview of SB 415. States that the bill has a subsequent referral to revenue.

070

Sen. Ringo

Introduces himself. Submits written testimony (EXHIBIT D).

Discusses:

  • Background
  • Essential reforms needed

140

Sen. Ringo

Discusses:

  • Basic purpose of Education Service Districts (ESD)
  • Three conclusions

173

Chair Walker

Asks Sen. Ringo if he feels that the ESD workgroup has defined a mission.

175

Sen. Ringo

Answers that they have made a step in the right direction but that it needs more details.

177

Sen. Morrisette

Asks if Sen. Ringo has seen the document that lists all of the services provided.

180

Sen. Ringo

Answers no. Comments that whatever is on the list needs to be tailored with the idea that ESDs are to provide services that the districts are unable to provide for themselves.

197

Sen. Morrisette

Asks if he has considered what consolidation might do to the smaller districts.

202

Sen. Ringo

Responds that it is the key question.

205

Sen. Ringo

Continues discussion:

  • SB 415

240

Sen. Morrisette

Asks about the distances between two places and the length of travel.

245

Sen. Ringo

States that it is an issue and a legitimate concern. 

255

Sen. Morrisette

Clarifies question.

257

Chair Walker

States that the services would still be there but the concern would be in management and communication issues.

265

Sen. Ringo

Continues discussion:

  • SB 415

292

Chair Walker

Asks if there is anyone testifying today that will be talking about the issue brought up about the rat hole in the NW ESD.

295

Sen. Ringo

Replies no.

312

Chair Walker

Mentions conversation with Superintendent regarding extravagant purchases made by the ESD.

320

Sen. Morrisette

Asks about the amount of federal funds received by ESDs and how it would translate if the money was given to the districts.

325

Sen. Ringo

Replies.

330

Sen. Kruse

Questions whether the Department of Education (DOE) should be under the same microscope as the ESDs.

345

Sen. Ringo

Responds.

370

Chair Walker

States that the Ways and Means committee is in the process of going through the K-12 budget and that the DOE has presented itself as having streamlined and reduced the number of administrators that they previously had.

385

Sen. Morrisette

States that he was told that the Department of Administrative Services (DAS) does central purchasing for everything.

390

Sen. Ringo

Replies.

400

Sen. Morrisette

Asks if he thinks that entrepreneurial activities that are easy to duplicate for the private sector are good if they supplement the income of the public sector.

405

Sen. Ringo

Believes the theory is good but that it is difficult to have accountability over it.

415

Sen. Ringo

Continues discussion:

  • SB 415

TAPE 15, B

005

Sen. Ringo

Continues Discussion:

  • Issue of equalization
  • Issue of accountability
  • Position of school administrators
  • Education Service Districts annual revenue

045

Sen. Ringo

Shares the suggestion of Ed Jensen from the Wallowa ESD.  States that it is much more progressive than what he is proposing but that it has a lot of merit.

065

Sen. Ringo

Concludes presentation.

075

Chair Walker

Notes that the relating clause on the bill relates to ESDs so it can be used as a framework.

085

John Peterson

Hillsboro School District board member. Submits written testimony (EXHIBIT E). Discusses his observations regarding ESDs. Mentions the annual report. Discusses core services. Talks about inequities.

155

Chair Walker

Asks if he has any control over how the NW ESD spends their money.

160

Peterson

Replies that they have some control. Explains. States that a common concern is that if a district opts out of ESDs, will it still get the money.

175

Sen. Kruse

Asks why they didn’t use the resources from one funding avenue to help subsidize the other.

190

Peterson

Replies.

195

Sen. Kruse

Asks why they wouldn’t take advantage of the services available and use the money on other shortfalls.

205

Joe Rodriguez

Retired Superintendent, Hillsboro School District. Discusses how the resources available to ESDs are used.

220

Chair Walker

Asks for definition of core services.

225

Rodriguez

Clarifies.

230

Sen. Kruse

Asks about core services that are not used and whether or not they are used to fund services in small districts.

235

Rodriguez

Replies that it is the intent.

237

Sen. Kruse

Asks if that is what happens to the money in his opinion.

235

Rodriguez

Answers.

245

Rodriguez

Discusses submitted testimony (EXHIBIT F).

States:

  • Oregon has historically spent slightly less per student on instruction than the national average, however, Oregon is above the national average in support services expenditures
  • Oregon schools and school districts are smaller than the national average
  • The size of the school district appeared to heavily influence district spending

300

Rodriguez

Talks about the lack of resources for smaller school districts.

345

Chair Walker

Responds.  Asks if he believes that protecting administrative jobs is more important than getting more money into the classroom.

365

Rodriguez

Responds.

400

Kate Dimon

Former employee of Willamette ESD. Submits and discusses written testimonyin support of SB 415 (EXHIBIT G).

TAPE 16, A

005

Dimon

Continues testimony. Discusses discrepancies and questionable activities of ESDs. States that schools are not reaping the benefits of ESDs.

075

Judy May

Superintendent, Lake ESD. Testifies in opposition to SB 415. Discusses issues with ESD consolidation. Talks about the size of ESDs and travel of personnel. Mentions services provided.

155

Chair Walker

Asks if she considers the Baker/Union ESD a small or large district.

158

May

Replies that she considers it a medium sized district.

160

Laura Pryor

Gillman County Judge. Testifies in opposition to SB 415. Discusses potential problems with consolidating ESDs. Talks about distance and communication. Mentions the issue of capacity. Talks about the economic impact.

275

Rob Myers

Lobbying on behalf of Frontier ESDs. Testifies in opposition to SB 415. Talks about rural ESDs.

300

Myers

Discusses the lack of administrative waste in remote rural ESDs. Provides examples. Talks about differences between delivering services in an urban area versus a rural area.

400

Myers

Discusses economies of scale. Talks about service delivery model. Mentions service levels.

TAPE 17, A

005

Myers

Concludes testimony.

010

Sen. Morrisette

Asks what School District Ione School is in.  

013

Myers

Answers, the Umatilla/Morrow ESD.

015

Sen. Morrisette

Asks if they disaggregated themselves from the larger district.

016

Myers

Answers yes.

018

Sen. Deckert

Comments on testimony. Asks about duplicative jobs.

045

May

Responds.

085

Craig Roessler

Superintendent, Silver Falls School District. Testifies in opposition to SB 415. Submits written testimony (EXHIBIT H).

135

Chair Walker

Comments on testimony.

155

Amy Grant

Oregon Home Education Network. Introduces herself. Testifies in opposition to SB 415. Submits written testimony (EXHIBIT I).

215

Rodger Williams

Oregon Christian Home Education Association Network. Testifies in opposition to SB 415. Submits written testimony (EXHIBIT J).  

285

Jim Mabbott

Superintendent, NW Regional ESD. Testifies in opposition to SB 415. Discusses ESD partnerships between school districts. Talks about efficiencies and making corrections. Mentions the Hillsboro School District. Talks about core services offered. States that there are 42 states throughout the country that have Educational Service Agencies (ESA).

435

Chair Walker

Asks if any charges have been filed against his predecessors who lived extravagant lifestyles while they were in his position.

440

Mabbott

Replies, not to his knowledge.

TAPE 16, B

005

Chair Walker

Responds. Discusses concern regarding the size of the ESD building and the opulence that it was decorated in. Asks what process they used to sell many of the extravagant items and how they were accounted for.

010

Mabbott

Explains in detail.  

025

Ron Hitchcock

Superintendent, Lane ESD. Discusses:

  • Equitable access to an educational program by every student in a county is typically on the opposite end of the spectrum when you talk about the function of equitable distribution of dollars by Average Daily Membership (ADM)
  • Reduction of duplication of services
  • Fee for service model

055

Chair Walker

Asks Dempsey to answer the following questions in writing due to the time constraints:

  • What is the practice of ESDs to give superintendents credit cards?
  • What are the standard perks of working for an ESD?
  • Do ESDs hire outside of family members?
  • When ESDs do not receive grants or funding, do ESDs lay off administrators?
  • Would like to know about the printing plant that Multnomah County ESD operates and how it educates kids in Oregon.
  • What is the salary of ESD superintendents?

080

Sen. Deckert

Asks if the tri-county area could serve the region with just one ESD.

085

Mabbott

Responds that it is a difficult question to answer but that, with the number of students involved, it would be difficult.

093

Sen. Morrisette

Comments on ESD board members. Asks for information about the board members in writing.

100

Chair Walker

Closes public hearing on SB 415 and adjourns meeting at 6:04  p.m.

 

EXHIBIT SUMMARY

 

  1. Education Service Districts, Informational Packet, Vickie Fleming, 6 pp
  2. Education Service Districts, Contracts, Vickie Fleming, 20 pp
  3. Education Service Districts, Regional Service Delivery Model, Ozzie Rose, 5 pp
  4. SB 415, Testimony, Sen. Charlie Ringo, 6 pp
  5. SB 415, Testimony, John Peterson, 4 pp
  6. SB 415, Testimony, Joe Rodriguez, 2 pp
  7. SB 415, Testimony, Kate Dimon, 3 pp
  8. SB 415, Testimony, Craig Roessler, 2 pp
  9. SB 415, Testimony, Amy Grant, 2 pp
  10. SB 415, Testimony, Rodger Williams, 6 pp