October 2019 Meeting Minutes

PATS General Public Meeting

October 2, 2019

7:20 AM – Simis Library

Call meeting to order – Jessie Spalding at 7:30 AM

Introductions – Jessie Spalding

Carol Bates – Be Smart Presentation (survivor of gun violence; son died in 1994)

Designed to teach gun sense in the home to keep children safe.  The non-political organization believes in common-sense gun legislation. 

Firearms 2nd leading cause of death in children; leading cause of death for African American children.  1,500 kids die every year from gun violence. Average of 4 kids killed every day by gun violence. Nearly 800 die by homicide.  

In the incident of gunfire on school grounds, 78% of shooters are under the age of 18, obtained guns from family or friends.

SMART model:  Secure | Model | Asking | Recognize | Tell

    • Secure all guns in your homes and vehicles
      • 13 million households in the U.S. contain at least one gun


  • Model responsible behavior


      • It is always an adult’s responsibility to prevent unauthorized access to guns, not a curious child’s responsibility to avoid guns
      • Make it part of the normal safety conversation you have with kids
      • Tell kids “If you see a gun, don’t touch it, tell an adult right away.”


  • Asking about unsecured guns in others homes


      • Make it part of your normal safety conversation when sending your child to a new home
      • 4.6 million kids live in a household with at least one loaded/unlocked gun


  • Recognize the role of guns in suicide


      • Most people who attempt suicide do not die – unless they use a gun
      • 85% of suicide attempts with a gun result in a death
      • 40% of child suicides involve a gun
      • Nearly half of those who survive a suicide attempt spend at least 10 minutes prior contemplating their decision
      • A survey of high school students revealed at least 17% considered suicide in the last year


  • Tell your peers to be SMART


    • Military/law enforcement/hunting or outdoor groups are effective at communicating safe storage practices

Laura Webb – Simis Principal

  • Fall Break next week; Half day on Friday, 11:00 AM dismissal
  • Fall Conferences – first three days after break.  Teachers sending sign-up information prior to fall break. Goal is that every single child has a parent/teacher conference experience.  
  • Lock down drill on Monday afternoon – parents received advanced warning.  1100 people on campus on any given day. Lockdown lasted about 20 minutes and every person on campus was accounted for. Kids go to least visible part of the room.  It is critical to practice. Teachers had conversations with students to be aware of the procedures – very conscientious of language used with kids. There will be two more unannounced drills this year.
    • Parent question – are there window coverings?  At this point, there are not. Simis has requested that through upcoming bond.
    • Parent requested to send Be Smart material to parents as well.  
    • Parent Question:  If a parent is visiting on campus during a lockdown, what does the parent do?  Any teacher will sweep any adult into the secure area and the teacher will account for the parent.  
    • Parents are notified after the school is secured.  Incident command center is set up on campus. District is notified.  Very sophisticated procedure. Primary responsibility is to take lead from emergency (fire/police) at their direction.
  • Upcoming Election – bond and override for Madison.  Madison Advocates will speak at this meeting. Vote!  Fact sheets available in front office for informed decisions.
  • Simis Scoop is available weekly in electronic form only now.  Please read! Principal’s pen addresses current/timely issues (i.e. parking.)
  • Please update your PowerSchool account – only 40% of Simis families have updated.  Please update even if none of your information has changed. Need to have accurate contact information so parents can be reached in case of emergency.
  • Ms. Hubbs was named PYP teacher of the year!  Congratulations Ms. Hubbs!
  • Sophie Garcia was named PYP student of the year.  Congratulations Sophie!

Stephanie Hendricks – Madison Advocates

In charge of campaign for upcoming bond – Nov. 5, 2019 General Election – mail in ballot only.  Ballots mailed out on Oct. 9. Contact Maricopa County Recorder’s Office to request mail in ballot by Oct. 25.  Last day to drop off mail in ballot is Oct. 30. 

Madison Advocates Legislative Town Hall:  October 15, 6 p.m. at Madison District Boardroom

    • Recently sent teachers to Uganda last summer
    • Madison Park received grant from SRP to update library
    • Teacher of the Week – Amy Ball (MTA)
    • Bond rating upgraded – Accreditation with AdvancED
      • Determined to be a low risk credit investment district
    • Facts about upcoming 2019 bond:
      • Bond is a financing tool used by many public sector entities including schools and local governments
      • Board authorized and voter approved
      • Building or renovation of buildings
      • Equipment or technology
      • Furniture
      • Improvement of school grounds
      • Purchase of transportation vehicles
    • 2015 Bond – voters generously approved $94 million
    • Arizona continues to rank at the bottom of nearly every funding category, continues to be a heavy reliance on local funding (bonds/overrides)
    • Cumulative statewide loss of state DAA (capital/M&O) funding was $2.6 BILLION between 2009-2019
    • Our kids need schools that are safe and secure
    • The Building Renewal Fund was repealed and replaced with Building Renewal Grants which isn’t funded adequately AND requires systems to fail before a district can qualify!


  • It’s far more efficient to replace an aging school building than to continually repair.  At Madison Simis the District saw nearly $50,000 in efficiency savings and they went from using 1,241,100 KWH to 868,320 KWH in 4 years!


  • Technology and innovation are driving how our kids are learning today.  We need to stay competitive by accommodating cutting edge learning spaces
  • Parent question – would solar panels be with parking covers in parking lot?
    • Uncertain as of now but will look into it
  • Override – applies to Maintenance and Operations Budget only 
  • Will NOT increase taxes
  • Why need a Bond and Override?
    • A bond must be used to fund capital projects that have a useful lifespan of greater than 5 years
    • A maintenance and operations override is used for running the schools
    • Funds from one “bucket” canNOT be used in another “bucket”


President’s Report – Jessie Spalding

  • New sport court up and running. Great feedback from students and teachers.
  • About 10 teacher grants approved at every board meeting ranging from special conferences for teachers to bring new ideas/programs to our school to tangible items in the classroom
  • Custodian day reminder – today!  Thank your Simis custodian. They will be getting gift card thank you’s from PATS in appreciation of them.
  • Sister schools update – $500 grants raised from dine-out funds raised will be given to support Madison sister schools

Fall Fair Updates – Meredith 


  • Check out simis.pats.com – the fair page is up.  
  • Fliers
  • Every kid is getting an orange fair flyer with the fact sheet info on the back sent home on Friday


Fundraising – Jenny & Tara


  • Next Dine outs (Miracle Mile 10/15) & (Blaze 11/25)
  • Spirit Wear going back on sale after fall break

Community Event – Biby

  • Trick or Treat at Fall Fair (not Trunk or Treat – logistically difficult with the layout)
  • Turkey Trot and Book Fair 11/23

Meeting Adjourned