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Held in Rockland County, New York

January 14 and 15, 2003


David Johnson, Secretary

Board of Regents




The Board of Regents of The University of the State of New York held a public session, Wednesday, January 15, at 1:00 p.m., pursuant to a call duly sent to each Regent.

MEETING OF THE FULL BOARD, Wednesday, January 15

Board Members in Attendance:

Robert M. Bennett, Chancellor

Adelaide L. Sanford, Vice Chancellor

Diane McGivern

Saul B. Cohen

James C. Dawson

Robert M. Johnson

Merryl H. Tisch

Geraldine D. Chapey

Harry Phillips, 3rd

Joseph E. Bowman, Jr.

James R. Tallon, Jr.

Milton L. Cofield

Also present were the President of The University and Commissioner of Education, Richard P. Mills, the Counsel and Deputy Commissioner for Legal Affairs, Kathy A. Ahearn, and the Secretary, Board of Regents, David Johnson. Regents Anthony S. Bottar, Arnold B. Gardner, Lorraine Cortés-Vázquez and Judith O. Rubin were absent and excused.

Chancellor Bennett called the meeting to order at 1:00 p.m.


Approval of Charter School Charter Agreements BR (A) 1 and Addendum to BR (A) 1

On December 12, 2002 the Board of Regents voted to approve the charter school applications of the Pinnacle Charter School, Buffalo, the Syracuse Academy of Science Charter School and the Bronx Charter School for Children, pursuant to Article 56 of the Education Law.

The law further requires the Board of Regents, as the charter entity, to enter into agreements allowing the applicants to organize and operate charter schools. Upon final approval of the charter agreements the charters are formally issued. Simultaneously, the Board of Regents incorporates the charter schools as education corporations by issuing provisional charters pursuant to Education Law sections 216 and 217.

MOVED, that the Board of Regents approve the charter agreements and issue charters pursuant to Article 56 of the Education Law for the Pinnacle Charter School, Buffalo, and the Syracuse Academy of Science Charter School, and incorporate these schools by granting each a provisional charter for a period of five years. 

Motion by:       Regent James C. Dawson
Seconded by: Regent Diane McGivern
Action:              Motion carried unanimously

MOVED, that the Board of Regents approve the charter agreement and issue a charter pursuant to Article 56 of the Education Law for the Bronx Charter School for Children, and incorporate the school by granting it a provisional charter for a period of five years.

Motion by:        Regent Saul B. Cohen
Seconded by: Regent Robert M. Johnson
Action:              Motion carried unanimously

Summary of the December Meeting

BR (A) 2

MOVED, that the Summary of the December 2002 Meeting of the Board of Regents of The University of the State of New York be approved.

Motion by:        Regent Robert M. Johnson
Seconded by: Regent Milton L. Cofield
Action:              Motion carried unanimously

State Education Department December 2002 Fiscal Report

BR (A) 3

The Board received for review and action the December 2002 Fiscal Report. General Fund and Federal accounts are in structural balance. All revenue accounts are in balance, allowing for normal reimbursement delays and the planned use of prior year balances.

MOVED, that the Board of Regents approve the December 2002 State Education Department Fiscal Report.

Motion by: Regent Saul B. Cohen
Seconded by: Regent James R. Tallon, Jr.
Action: Motion carried unanimously


Commissioner�s Report

The Commissioner�s written report focused on eight subject areas: Regents school accountability plan approved by USDOE; Governor�s 2003-2004 budget message; District Superintendent salary cap bill vetoed by the Governor; challenges to the Regents Exams; USNY is a strategic advantage to New York; communicating about the gap; Education Week gives New York an A for accountability and assessment; and, District Superintendents offer perspective on middle grades.

Commissioner Richard P. Mills presented an overview of administrative actions and proposed policy actions supporting reform of the New York City public school system presented earlier in the day by the Mayor, the Honorable Michael R. Bloomberg. Board members requested a memorandum specifying the issues of law within the recommendations of the Mayor.


Review of Report of Subcommittee on Communication,

Advocacy and Support/Statewide GAP Implementation

Advisory Committee

BR (I) 1.1 and Attachment

In January 2002, the Statewide Gap Implementation Advisory Committee was established with two subcommittees, charged to develop recommendations to implement the Regents strategies to close the gaps in student performance: one focusing on strengthening instruction and the second focusing on communication, advocacy and support.

Mr. William Baker and Mr. Monte Trammer, Chair and Vice Chair of the Subcommittee on Communication, Advocacy and Support, led a discussion of the recommendations of their Subcommittee in developing an approach to the creation of public awareness of the gaps in student academic performance. The message must encompass four principles: all children can learn; there are gaps in student academic performance, particularly for minority and high-poverty students, which are intolerable; the gaps can be closed, as demonstrated in a number of schools throughout the State; and, closing the gaps is everyone�s business.

In discussion, Board members offered additional recommendations: encourage conversations with the National Ad Council; focus on the economic impact of the gap; and, consider strategies for identifying funding support.

Update on No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB)

James A. Kadamus, Deputy Commissioner for Elementary, Middle, Secondary and Continuing Education and Shelia Evans-Tranumn, Associate Commissioner for New York City School and Community Services, provided an overview of the progress achieved on the State�s submission of its NCLB accountability plan to the United States Department of Education (USDOE).

On January 8, 2003 the USDOE approved the basic elements of New York�s accountability plan, stating that the plan addresses all accountability elements in accordance with the requirements in section IIII of Title I of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act as amended by the No Child Left Behind Act. New York is one of five states with approved plans.


The Board convened its monthly meeting at the Jesse J. Kaplan School on the campus of the Rockland BOCES. Upon their arrival, Board members received a brief presentation on the schools' programs followed by a luncheon hosted and prepared by students in the culinary arts program. During this time, entertainment was provided by a student string quartet from Clarkstown North High School. In the early afternoon, Board members enjoyed concurrent program visits to the Jesse J. Kaplan and Hilltop schools, the Holocaust Museum at the Finkelstein Library, the Lower Hudson Challenger Center, and Chestnut Ridge Middle School.

Board members met with area school leaders and local, county and State interagency partners to discuss collaborations in effect in Rockland County that address the needs of students and their families in times of crisis.

In the evening the Board hosted a community forum, attended by more than 125 persons, at MacArthur Barr Middle School, Nanuet. Following a brief opening presentation, attendees joined members of the Board and senior Department staff in a series of classroom discussions on education issues of interest to those in attendance.

On the morning of January 15 Board members visited four pairs of schools: Suffern High School and Valley Cottage Elementary School; MacArthur Barr Middle School and South Orangetown Middle School; Gerald F. Neary Elementary School, Haverstraw, and Clarkstown South High School; and, Pearl River Middle School and Elmwood Elementary School, Monsey.

The monthly meeting concluded with a luncheon and meeting of the Full Board at St. Thomas Aquinas College.