Mallard Creek STEM Academy
Board of Directors Meeting
August 9th at 7:00 pm at MCSA STEM Lab

Present: Jose Garcia, Christy Condon, Kellen Nixon, Shelly Domenech, Vishu Cook

Missing: Tyrone Harmon

Other: New Dean of Behavior

7:00 Call to Order

Mr. Garcia called the meeting to order.

7:02 Approval of Minutes from last meeting

Mr. Garcia asked for board input on the minutes from June. Ms. Cook made a motion to approved the minutes. Ms. Condon seconded the motion. The board approved the June minutes unanimously.

7:05 Public Comment

There was no public comment.

7:15 Old Business:

Construction update for Phase 2

Construction is still moving. Poured foundation for second floor. Hoping the roofing is complete in the next few days. Once they seal the building the progress can move quickly. Ms. Lucas presented the board with a construction update. The updated targeted date is August 26th for CO. First day of school is September 4th. Ms. Lucas said contingency plans. Perhaps a Sign-Up Genius for parent volunteers for moving items into the building.

7:30 Principal Report:

Enrollment/Applications/Open Houses/ Parent Updates:

Ms. Smith provided her report to the board.

Enrollment: Changes daily. We have 830 students fully enrolled into PowerSchool. Some not have entered some in PowerSchool and have not removed some. 828 for Day 1 which is a little over our target of 805. Some of attrition from 7th to 8th grades. We are low in numbers in eighth grade. It does not change staffing for this grade. Children are on waitlist and still being called.

There was a question from Mr. Nixon with regard to connection for families to area high schools so that we can retain the 7th and 8th graders. Ms. Cook will be working with UNC Charlotte to make connects with the UNC Lab High School.

School Advisory Council: Met three times. We created a draft School Improvement Plan. We have three overarching goals, academic growth, school culture, and school safety. We broke into subcategories with timelines. Board members should review and send any comments to Ms. Smith. We will meet again August 21st and be ready to submit to the board in September.

Finance: We just completed the annual audit. Ms. Lucas added that the auditor does not have any additional questions, etc. at this time. The audit is not live until October 1st.

Action item up for discussion and approval for a short-term cash loan. Ms. Lucas stated the state budget was passed early. We plan for year to year increased funding for 2%. There was a 4.8% increase. Our budget was set for 804 students and we approved salary raises for staff for next year. State and local money both have restrictions. We are setting a short term cash loan from Charter School Capital to fund $300,000. We have the cash, but we do not have access to it until our local money comes in until September. The funding should come August 15th until August 31st. The budget will be updated to reflect this loan, the origination fee and interest.

Ms. Condon made a motion to approve the short-term cash loan from Charter School Capital. Mr. Nixon seconded it. The motion passes unanimously. Ms. Condon signed the Acknowledgement Resolution document for submission.

6th Grade Orientation: Ms. Smith updated the board about the 6th Grade Orientation. There were close to 60 families.

Website: We have a new website. Courtney Chambers. She is looking for quotes, etc.

Professional Development Calendar/ STEM/ Curriculum: Ms. Smith can forward out to the board for review. Teachers come back on August 20th. For New Teacher Orientation and Training. The rest of the teachers come back August 22nd.

We are going to develop a cohort with 5th-8th grade teachers for Math and Science PD with the student data in front of them in partnership with Discovery Place. Challenge is that we only have one of each Math and Science teacher at each grade level.

Sports: We are looking to join a sports conference that has some private and charter schools. Coed soccer will be offered in 6th grade. We will have girls and boys basketball, volleyball, and track. Mr. Thomas arranged a field on loan on Eastfield Road. Mr. Garcia asked logistics questions about goals, field painting, referee fees, etc. Ms. Smith will get back to the board. We will charge a sports fees to include uniform shirt, etc.

Care Program: We had a very successful summer camp. We brought in children from the community. The budget was not consistent. We may want to reevaluate the structure of the program. We are looking at doing STEM camp for next year. We need to get teachers committed. This year we didn’t have a summer camp director; next year we want to have a summer camp director. Mr. Nixon suggested that we can start the planning now for next year’s camps so we have more academic enrichment.

Staff Model: We are finalizing new hires. We are looking for a Kindergarten teacher. We should fully staffed by the end of next week. A fully certified Art teacher has been hired. MCSA will be offering chorus and band and is a certified Music teacher. We will have an assistant principal for the Middle School. In response to the feedback we received last year regarding more administration and addressing behavior and safety we’ve added the assistant principal, dean, and guidance counselor who is actually trained in restorative practices from the International Institute of Restorative Practices. She can provide professional develop and is onsite working with staff and teachers. We received a $33,333 grant for a school resourceofficer. It is application process, and we working through that process to get a CMPD officer.

Flooring: Still not approved for the gym/ cafeteria. Mr. Garcia expressed concerns about lines for courts and sports.

8:00 New Business:

There was discussion about an action item to approve a web school meals application procedure to allow another way for parents to apply for this meal services. We will offer web-based, print-based, and direct certified applications. Ms. Condon makes a motion to approve the plan. Mr. Nixon seconded the motion. The board passed the motion unanimously. This policy will be posted online.


We are still sitting on two or three finance offers for SCSA. We have finance firms competing for financing. We are working with architecture firm for final drawings. The design is almost done. We own the land and are doing due diligence. Waiting for finalizing financing. Shorten Road off of Route 485.


We will update our 804 budget. We discussed the overrun on the budget in June. The city gave us a final CO no the gym. We will not be responsible for the proposed road improvement of a turning lanes. The school also settled with bus company for $15,000 for their last month of service when MCSA terminated their contract.

Construction/financing update for SCSA: Mr. Garcia stated that Ms. Williams requested the physical address of SCSA.

The board discussed the Ready to Open trainings. The following meetings:

  • September 30th: Kellen Nixon
  • October 31st: Shelly Domenech
  • November 14th: Vishu Cook/ Tyrone Harmon
  • December 12th: Christy Condon
  • January 30th: Vishu Cook

Proposed Calendar Dates: The board has proposed the 2018-2019 dates for our board meetings. These will be subject for approval at the September meeting. These dates will be posted on the MCSA website when finalized.

September: Tuesday, September 25th

October: Tuesday, October 23rd

November/ December: Tuesday, December 4th

January: Tuesday, January 29th

February: Tuesday, February 19th

March: Tuesday, March 19th

April: Tuesday, April 23rd

May: Tuesday, May 21st


July: Tuesday, July 23rd

There was a calendar for PTO and Ms. Smith will send out to the board so that we can approve a board rotation for attendance.

Ms. Condon makes a motion to adjourn the meeting and Ms. Cook seconded the motion. Mr. Garcia adjourned the meeting.

8:30 Adjourn

The next meeting will be held at MCSA at 7:00 p.m. on September 25th.

Board of Directors Meeting August 9th 2018