Tuesday, June 25, 2024
6:30 p.m. — 8:30 p.m. EDT

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8912 Morris Ct Cleveland, OH 44106 (Directions)

Daniel E. Morgan School, (or watch on YouTube)

The Board of Education functions as the governing body of the Cleveland Metropolitan School District. Board responsibilities include: hiring the school district chief executive officer (with the mayor’s agreement); setting school district policy; approving the school district budget; establishing goals and accountability standards; and promoting parent, family, and community involvement in the schools.

The board has two types of meetings: a work session and a business meeting. Work sessions focus on information gathering and debate on issues and proposed resolutions. Business meetings focus on holding official votes on resolutions. Sometimes the board does vote on resolutions in the work sessions.

The board often enters executive session. It is a part of the meeting, though there is nothing for you to document other than noting when they enter and exit it. The board typically returns to public session, handles a small bit of business, then officially adjourns. Executive sessions can leave you waiting around for a bit, but it does count as part of the meeting time covered.

The board can have up to nine voting members, all of whom are appointed by the mayor.

Current board members:

  • Sara Elaqad, chair
  • Leah D. Hudnall, vice chair
  • Robert Briggs
  • Robert M. Heard
  • Midori Lebrón
  • Diana Welch Howell
  • Denise W. Link
  • Nigamanth Sridhar
  • Charlene Jones

The CEO of the school district is Warren Morgan II.

Heads-up: Hudnall and Link are resigning from the board. This may be their last meeting.

Watching remotely?

Find the meeting live stream here:

As a second option, you may also find the live stream on the school district’s homepage during the meeting time:

Attending in person?

We add two hours of pay ($36) to the assignment.

Find past Documenters coverage of this meeting here:

Check the source website for additional information


Edited and summarized by the Cleveland - OH Documenters Team

Note-taking by Tucker Handley

Schools CEO foregoing raise this year

Live reporting by Emma Sedlak

CMSD ending sponsorship of Lakeshore Intergenerational School

Emma Sedlak @eesedla
Good Evening! I’ll be live tweeting tonight's Cleveland Metropolitan School Board Business Meeting that was scheduled to begin at 6:30 PM. #CLEDocumenters

05:45 PM Jun 25, 2024 CDT

Emma Sedlak @eesedla 2/58
@cledocumenters @signalcleveland Chair Sara Elaqad called the session to order at 6:36 PM.
The meeting began with a roll call. Eight members were present, excluding Leah D. Hudnall. Next, they approved the minutes from the June 11 meeting.
Emma Sedlak @eesedla 3/58
@cledocumenters @signalcleveland Elaqad announced that they are saying goodbye to
Denise W. Link and Leah D. Hudnall, who are concluding their terms on the board.
Emma Sedlak @eesedla 4/58
@cledocumenters @signalcleveland Hudnall is not present due to her son’s birthday.
Link, a vice president at PNC Bank, served on the board for 17 years. She was appointed by Frank Jackson and reappointed by Mayor Bibb.
Emma Sedlak @eesedla 5/58
@cledocumenters @signalcleveland Michele Pomerantz, Cleveland's Chief of Education, presented a letter from Mayor Bibb to applaud Link's service and commitment to CMSD students.
CEO Warren Morgan also thanked Link.
Emma Sedlak @eesedla 6/58
@cledocumenters @signalcleveland During the CEO update, Warren honored all the retirees from the 2023-2024 school year and asked them to stand for a round of applause.
“We thank you for your service,” Morgan said.
Emma Sedlak @eesedla 7/58
@cledocumenters @signalcleveland Morgan invited Kevin Stockdale to answer a few questions about the resolutions discussed at the June 11 work session.
Stockdale answered a question about the contract with RTA in 8.03. He clarified the difference in prices between bulk tickets and single day/ride tickets.
Emma Sedlak @eesedla 8/58
@cledocumenters @signalcleveland Stockdale clarified that the maintenance costs for the Executive Grille at East Tech High School in 8.01 will be about $2,500-3,000 a year.
Stockdale also answered questions about insurance.
Emma Sedlak @eesedla 9/58
@cledocumenters @signalcleveland Morgan introduced a presentation about updates from the 2023-2024 school year.
He clarified that some of the data is incomplete, but their annual Report Card should come with the complete data in the next couple of months.
Emma Sedlak @eesedla 10/58
@cledocumenters @signalcleveland Morgan introduced CMSD's "Core Measures" and the leading indicators they use to measure the success of the initiatives. He also mentioned that they look at data by subgroup to avoid “leaving students behind.”
Emma Sedlak @eesedla 11/58
@cledocumenters @signalcleveland One core measure is that within five years, 90% of students are enrolled in college, employed, or enlisted.
Morgan said that the aim is for every CMSD senior to complete a FAFSA, even if they aren't planning to go to college.
Emma Sedlak @eesedla 12/58
@cledocumenters @signalcleveland As of June 14, 2024, 48% of CMSD seniors completed FAFSA. Morgan said there is still work to be done, but the district is making gains from 46% in 2023.
Emma Sedlak @eesedla 13/58
@cledocumenters @signalcleveland Morgan said they are supporting students in completing FAFSA and college applications by tracking FAFSA data, partnering with College Now Greater Cleveland, and hosting FAFSA completion workshops for students and families.
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@cledocumenters @signalcleveland Next, Morgan spoke about the core measure focusing on chronic absenteeism. This year, the district has seen a decline in chronic absenteeism since the rise during the pandemic.
Emma Sedlak @eesedla 15/58
@cledocumenters @signalcleveland Morgan looked at subgroup data, which revealed that white students have had the highest decrease in chronic absenteeism, and Black and SPED students have had the lowest.
Emma Sedlak @eesedla 16/58
@cledocumenters @signalcleveland Morgan pointed to a few initiatives driving attendance, including expanded training for secretaries, positive attendance messaging campaigns, and a no-show task force to address students who have never reported to school.
Emma Sedlak @eesedla 17/58
@cledocumenters @signalcleveland Next, Morgan looked at the core measure to address the disproportionality of discipline rates. He noted that Back and SPED students are overrepresented in suspensions.
Emma Sedlak @eesedla 18/58
@cledocumenters @signalcleveland Morgan acknowledged that the disproportionality of suspensions potentially indicates that discipline policies are not equitably applied to subgroups of students.
He said they are looking at monthly data cycles, aligning discipline protocols, and providing additional trainings.
Emma Sedlak @eesedla 19/58
@cledocumenters @signalcleveland Next, Morgan reviewed preliminary Ohio State Test results, noting that the district has seen significant gains in English, Language, Arts (ELA), and Math. These gains are relatively consistent among all subgroups.
Emma Sedlak @eesedla 20/58
@cledocumenters @signalcleveland Nigamanth Sridhar thanked Morgan for his presentation. He asked if there is a dashboard through which the board can monitor progress on their core measures. Morgan said they are trying to develop that dashboard and focus on relevant data.
Emma Sedlak @eesedla 21/58
@cledocumenters @signalcleveland Midori Lebrón highlighted the FAFSA completion workshops and said she's happy the district is involving families in the process. She asked if translation services are provided for families who need them. Morgan said he knows there are translation services at some workshops.
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@cledocumenters @signalcleveland Welch Howell asked how they focus on discrepancies between subgroups. Morgan responded there was still work to do.
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@cledocumenters @signalcleveland Morgan turned it over to two people who added that each school had to spell out an action plan to reach out to each subgroup and that they are giving schools the tools to address these discrepancies.
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@cledocumenters @signalcleveland Elaqad and Morgan discussed the district's difficult financial situation.
Morgan said he is not seeking a raise as is conventional.
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@cledocumenters @signalcleveland Elaqad added that the board is not taking financial risks, so the money goes directly toward supporting students.
She also noted that the board is confident in CEO Morgan even though they aren't giving him a raise.
Emma Sedlak @eesedla 26/58
@cledocumenters @signalcleveland Elaqad opened the public comment portion of the meeting by noting the East Professional Center's name change to honor Arnold Pinkney. She said it was important that the board take equity into account and honor a community leader.
Emma Sedlak @eesedla 27/58
@cledocumenters @signalcleveland Elaqad welcomed Betty Pinkney to the podium, who thanked the board for voting unanimously to name the East Professional Center after Arnold Pinkney. Betty spoke about Arnold’s life story, coming to Cleveland, starting a family, and leading an excellent career.
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@cledocumenters @signalcleveland George Forbes spoke in support of the name change, saying, “Arnold was my friend.” Forbes continued that Pinkney showed particular care for Cleveland’s Black community and got the work done.
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@cledocumenters @signalcleveland Forbes noted that Pinkney was justly against bussing. According to Forbes, "they stopped bussing kids” because “it just didn’t work.”
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@cledocumenters @signalcleveland Rev. Dr. E.T. Caviness said Pinkney was always a man of character and integrity. He left a monumental legacy in Cleveland, and his imprint on this city will never be forgotten. Pinkney treated the students of CMSD with dignity, understanding, and intellect.
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@cledocumenters @signalcleveland Rev. Otis Moss spoke about Pinkney’s convictions in keeping Central State University, a historically black university in Wilberforce, Ohio, open.
He also applauded Pinkney for living for others' success. “God bless this board and the memory of Arnold Pinkney,” he said.
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@cledocumenters @signalcleveland Cleveland Councilwoman Stephanie Howse-Jones Thanked the board on behalf of Cleveland's City Council for accepting the resolution to rename the East Professional Center for Pinkney.
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@cledocumenters @signalcleveland Councilwoman Howse-Jones said that she received a letter from the East Professional Center Alumni, who noted that they were not involved in the renaming process.
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@cledocumenters @signalcleveland She said she takes responsibility for the disconnect and calls on the board to create a relationship with Alumni moving forward.
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@cledocumenters @signalcleveland Tyrone MacInnis praised the name change to honor Pinkney.
Kent Whitley spoke about working on school levy campaigns with Pinkney and noted that there has not been a failed school levy since 1996
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@cledocumenters @signalcleveland Next, James Jones read a letter from the Baptist church supporting the name change honoring Pinkney. He spoke about how Pinkney was an excellent leader during the arduous process of desegregation and applauded Pinkney for bringing communities together for schools.
Emma Sedlak @eesedla 37/58
@cledocumenters @signalcleveland Judge Jeffrey Johnson noted how many iconic leaders were in the room. Johnson said he is one of the beneficiaries of Arnold Pinkney’s greatness and emphasized that Pinkney showed him how to overcome challenges and keep going.
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@cledocumenters @signalcleveland Stuart Muszynski applauded Pinkney for helping him with his ideas even though he was not a friend.
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@cledocumenters @signalcleveland The rest of the speakers who signed up were not present.
Elaqad thanked the speakers for sharing their passion for Pinkney’s legacy. Howell also shared her appreciation for the speakers for sharing Black history and Cleveland history.
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@cledocumenters @signalcleveland Next, Elaqad introduced 36 resolutions discussed during the June 11 work session.
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@cledocumenters @signalcleveland First, the board passed 6.01, which approved the reappointment of Melanie Shakarian to the Board of Trustees for Cleveland Public Libraries. Howell and Elaqad both shared positive remarks about Shakarian. Shakarian mentioned she is the only CMSD parent on the board.
Emma Sedlak @eesedla 42/58
@cledocumenters @signalcleveland Next, the board passed 6.02, which adopted the Cleveland Public Library Tax budget for FY 2025. Robert Briggs discussed his concern about operating on a deficit. He said he had no objection to this resolution but said the board should take action to address the deficit.
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@cledocumenters @signalcleveland The board passed 6.03, which authorizes a professional services agreement with Julian & Grube for internal audit services.
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@cledocumenters @signalcleveland Elaqad introduced all finance resolutions, 7.01 - 7.14, which authorize payments, resource distributions, contracts, insurance, and the acceptance of gifts and grants.
Emma Sedlak @eesedla 45/58
@cledocumenters @signalcleveland Sridhar asked that 7.07 be pulled out and voted on separately as he has been in discussions about the grant and would like to be recused from the vote.
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@cledocumenters @signalcleveland Briggs asked for a financial cap on the authority of the CEO to enter into contracts and purchase orders given in 7.04. Morgan said he’s open to a cap and would like to look at historical data to see what would be appropriate.
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@cledocumenters @signalcleveland 7.01-7.14 all passed.
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@cledocumenters @signalcleveland Elaqad introduced all operations resolutions, 8.01-8.07. They all passed.
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@cledocumenters @signalcleveland Elaqad introduced the academic resolutions, 9.01-9.04.
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@cledocumenters @signalcleveland Morgan noted that 9.02 concerns the Lakeshore Intergenerational School merging with another school, which means the district will no longer sponsor them.
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@cledocumenters @signalcleveland Stockdale noted that 9.04 added a new supplier to help with the no-phone policy next school year.…
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@cledocumenters @signalcleveland All academic resolutions passed.
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@cledocumenters @signalcleveland Elaqad introduced the equity and culture resolutions, 10.01-10.08. All passed.
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@cledocumenters @signalcleveland With no old or new business, Elaqad announced that the next board meeting is August 20 at Arnold Pinkney East Professional Center.
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@cledocumenters @signalcleveland The board then moved into an executive session to discuss employment, employee negotiations, and legal disputes.
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@cledocumenters @signalcleveland After coming back from the executive session, the board passed a resolution approving a negotiation agreement with Teamsters Union 436. Morgan expressed gratitude for the negotiations.
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@cledocumenters @signalcleveland The board then passed resolutions for the non-renewal of two administrators.
With no further business, the meeting adjourned a little before 11 PM.
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Agency Information

Cleveland Metropolitan School District

The Board of Education functions as the governing body of the Cleveland Metropolitan School District. Board responsibilities include: hiring the School District Chief Executive Officer (with the concurrence of the Mayor); setting School District policy; approving the School District budget; establishing goals and accountability standards; and promoting parent, family, and community involvement in the schools.

Cleveland’s current school governance structure was created by Ohio House Bill 269 in 1997, and took effect September 9, 1998. The Board of Education is made up of nine voting members appointed by the Mayor of Cleveland from a slate of nominees selected by a local nominating panel, established under State law. At least four of the nine members must have significant expertise in either education, finance, or business management. Board members must be residents of the School District, and at least one of the nine members must reside in that part of the School District that is outside the City of Cleveland (Bratenahl, Linndale, Newburgh Heights, and parts of Brook Park and Garfield Heights).

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