Thursday, October 20, 2022
8:15 - 11:30 am
Opening General Session
Opening Keynote: Lessons Learned. . . Crisis Response During One School’s Tragedy – Jason Russell
Jason Russell is often asked to assist in post-incident recovery and management. On November 30, 2021, Jason was called to Oxford High School in Oxford, Michigan to provide guidance and support to the Oxford School District leadership after the tragic shooting which claimed the lives of four students and injured several other students and staff. His assistance began just minutes after the incident; Jason continues to be an integral part of the district’s safety and security team today.
In this session, Jason will discuss his role and responsibilities from the moment he arrived at Oxford High School. He will describe the procedures and responses the school district implemented, with his guidance, after the incident and the impact those had on managing during a time of crisis. Specifically, Jason will discuss the importance of crisis communication, the need for critical incident response, and the legal ramifications for the school district and associated personnel. In addition, Jason will discuss the need for a behavioral threat assessment to identify students in crisis and the resources for mental health support. Join Jason to learn strategies that will hopefully assist in preventing a terrible event such as this one from occurring in Montana public schools.
Tier 3: Not Just You and ME! – Jon Konen and Norah Barney
1:00 - 1:50 pm
As behaviors and social and emotional needs continue to rise in schools, what can we do as educators to best support students and staff? SEL(PBIS + Tier 3 Interventions) = Strong Supportive Learning Environment. In this session, you will build a foundation for understanding the importance of school culture in building a successful MTSS program. We’ll explore the different systems needed as well as the universal beliefs that every school needs in order to build a successful program.
MCS - Underwriter - Pictures Worth a 1000 Words! MCS’s School Construction/Pre-Construction Partnership – Dave Puyear
In dealing with School Construction and Pre-Construction, actual pictures of completed projects and those currently underway can be extremely helpful during the concept and development phases of school construction. This fast-paced “slide show” session will provide school leaders with an overview of projects from across Montana.
School Safety and Security – Strategies for Providing a Safe and Secure Learning and Work Environment – MTSBA Legal Staff
During this session, we will discuss the available resources available to Montana Public Schools to improve school and student safety security. This will include an overview of legislation passed over the course of the last decade to assist school districts to enhance their safety and security programs, model policies and procedures that have been developed to provide guidance for school leaders, as well as legal considerations when faced with school safety and security issues.
2:00 - 2:50 pm
Educators Rising: Creating a “Grow Your Own” program – Curtis Smeby, Ed.D and Lisa Rollins, Educators Rising
The session will provide participants with an overview of Educators Rising in Montana and update those attending on its development in the state. The conversation will be interactive and focused on supporting school districts as they enhance the opportunities for their high school students to consider becoming a Montana educator. Educators Rising supports this outcome to improve educator recruitment and retention. Educators Rising builds confidence in their teaching skills, creates lesson plans, and practices professionalism. Working with students is sure to inspire or increase your students' passion and solidify their desire to continue on the path to becoming an educator in Montana.
MCS - Underwriter - Montana’s School Food Services – Strategies for Addressing the Current Challenges Facing School Food Service Budgets and Kitchens Across the State - Dave Puyear
School Food Service Budgets and Kitchens have been hit with a wide variety of challenges during the last couple of years. MCS, Montana’s largest school food service purchasing cooperative, will facilitate this discussion of the current challenges and a variety of proposed solutions in addressing these issues.
Communicating Budget Documents to Your Community - Brian Patrick, Director of Business Operations, Great Falls Public Schools.
It is now more important than ever to provide the public, staff, and your Board with clear information about public school budgets and funding. Obtain tools that will allow you to present your district's information to your community.
Sponsor T.E.S.T., Inc. - Three Simple but Tough Questions!! – Liz Cunningham
T.E.S.T., Inc. has been partnering with Montana schools for the past 23 years in evaluating and implementing technology solutions. T.E.S.T. is best known for providing the best in classroom solutions but did you know that over the past 10 years, T.E.S.T. has been consulting and working with schools to implement the best in Safety and Security as well? Aside from a child’s home, schools are viewed as the second safest institution in the community. School safety and security challenges remain a multilayered and complex issue facing school leaders today. T.E.S.T., Inc. recognizes there is no single solution to making schools safe. Protecting students and faculty is an immeasurable moral and legal responsibility that school leadership must address. T.E.S.T. acknowledges that the “roller-coaster” effect of school policies, community politics, complacency, and inadequate funding are impediments that all school districts face. Security protocols are a fundamental obligation of school leaders, who face daily pressure to ensure that students are protected, often without significant security expertise. T.E.S.T.’s mission is to help ensure schools remain the one place in which every student and faculty feels safe and secure from harm. When it comes to security, school districts are faced with three simple but tough questions. What should we do? How do we prioritize? How do we pay for it? Please join us for an overview of a variety of safety and security solutions that we have helped many schools across Montana implement. T.E.S.T. has built a premier team of diverse employees and partners to serve Montana Schools. Join us as we help provide answers to those three tough questions!
3:00 pm – 3:50 pm
MSGIA - Underwriter - Cyber Vigilance is not Optional!
Dianne Burke, University of Montana Cybersecurity Faculty and Director, CyberMontana and Matt Komac, MSGIA Assistant Director for Property and Liability Pool Operations
Join Dianne and Matt for this session for a bird’s-eye view of the cybersecurity landscape in K-12 education. Understand the five most common cybersecurity exposures and learn the five most important cybersecurity precautions your district can implement to counter these exposures. Network and cyber security have become a top agenda issue for school districts in Montana and this session will give your district the tools to address it head-on.
OPI - Regulations - Rob Stutz and Rick Wootton, OPI Legal Staff
Offsetting General Fund Expenditures with Other Funds - Shelley Turner, MASBO and Steve Hamel, MASBO
Making your general fund dollars stretch becomes harder and harder, especially when other funding sources dry up. Permissive levy dollars, ESSER funding, interlocal and/or multidistrict agreements, and more provide Districts with flexibility to utilize all funding sources effectively and efficiently.
Sponsor DA Davidson - Increasing Success in Montana’s Public Schools Through Completion of Capital Improvement Projects - Thom Peck, Superintendent, Lewistown Public Schools, Rebeckah Rhoades, Business Manager/District Clerk, Lewistown Public School, Erik Wilkerson, Superintendent, Jefferson High School, Lorie Carey, Business Manager/District Clerk, Jefferson High School, Bridget Ekstrom, Senior Vice President, D.A. Davidson & Co., Dan Semmens, Partner, Dorsey & Whitney LLP
Despite challenges presented by COVID, Montana School Districts in 2020, 2021 and early 2022 have experienced good luck passing school bonds and completing school building projects with 14 of 16 elections passing from April 2020 through April 2022. However, since May of 2022, only 3 of 12 bond issues have passed as new economic concerns influence voters. As schools look ahead to implement their capital plans, this MCEL session will provide an interactive format for attendees to learn from the recent experience of Lewistown Elementary District and Jefferson HS District who both issued bonds in early 2022 and hear the keys to prepare for the future by: (1) putting together a capital improvement plan for the district, (2) communicating with the community in passing the bonds at a bond election, (3) issuing bonds with favorable financing terms and (4) designing, constructing and managing the construction projects.
4:00 pm – 5:00 pm
ISBC Board Meeting
4:30 pm – 6:30 pm
MASBO Board Meeting
4:30 pm – 7:00 pm
SAM Board Meeting
6:00 pm – 8:00 pm
Joint MREA & MCS Reception – Everyone Welcome