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HCPS publishes minutes of School Board meetings after Board approval. Although the online minutes do not include signatures, citizens may arrange to review the official documents by completing a public records request with the Communications Department.

901 E. Kennedy Boulevard, Tampa
Tuesday, March 20, 2018

The School Board of Hillsborough County, Florida, met in special called session on Tuesday, March 20, at 2:30 p.m., in the School Board Auditorium, 901 East Kennedy Boulevard, Tampa, with Superintendent Jeff Eakins, and Board Members Lynn Gray, April Griffin, Sally Harris, Tamara Shamburger, Melissa Snively, and Cindy Stuart present.  Chair Sally Harris presided.

Absent:  Susan Valdes

Others present were:

Board Attorney:  James Porter

District Attorney:  Jeff Gibson

Deputy Superintendent:  Van Ayres

Chief of Schools, Administration:  Harrison Peters

Assistant Superintendents/Division Chiefs:

      Academic Support and Federal Programs:  Tracye Brown

      Business Services:  Gretchen Saunders

      Community Relations:  Grayson Kamm

      Diversity:  Minerva Spanner-Morrow - absent

      Educational Leadership and Professional Development: Tricia McManus

      Governmental Relations: Connie Milito

      Human Resources:  Marie Whelan

      Operations:  Chris Farkas- absent

      Outreach and School Improvement:  Larry Sykes, Ed. D

      Student Services:  Wynne Tye

      Teaching and Learning:  Deborah Cook

External Communications Manager:  Tanya Arja

Superintendent’s Secretary (Recording):  Lori Woods

News Media Representatives:

      Tampa Bay Times:  Marlene Sokol  

      Fox 13:  Marissa Lynn

Approximately 45 people were in the audience, including other school district personnel.

Call to Order:  Meeting called to order at 2:33 p.m.

Moment of Silence and Pledge of Allegiance:  Moment of silence followed by Vice Chair Shamburger leading in the Pledge of Allegiance to the United States Flag. 

Adoption of the Agenda:

Motion by Vice Chair Shamburger, second by Mrs. Griffin, to adopt the agenda.  Motion unanimously carried.

Board – Roll Call:  Chair Harris declared a quorum with six Board Members present.  Mrs. Valdes - absent

Board Guidelines

Vice Chair Shamburger read the guidelines into the record.

Motion by Mrs. Gray, second by Mrs. Griffin, to approve the consent agenda.  Motion unanimously carried.

Speakers to Agenda Items

Vice Chair Shamburger read the guidelines for public comments.


Item No.

Mark Klutho

12.01, Audience Comments

Administrative Appointments (Section B) None

Recommendations and Reports of Superintendent Requiring Board Approval

(Section C)

1.00 Office of Teaching and Learning (Deborah Cook): None

2.00 Educational Access, Opportunity and Alternatives (Wynne Tye): None

3.00 Academic Support and Federal Programs Division (Tracye Brown): None

4.00 Human Resources Division (Marie Whelan): None

5.00 Office of Leadership and Professional Development (Tricia McManus): None

6.00 Business Services (Gretchen Saunders): None

7.00 Operations Division (Chris Farkas):  None

8.00 Chief of Schools (Harrison Peters): None

9.00 Communications (Grayson Kamm): None

10.00 Office of Diversity (Minerva Spanner-Morrow): None

11.00 Outreach and School Improvement (Larry Sykes, Ed.D.): None

12.00 Unclassified:


State Education Budget 2018/2019

Superintendent Eakins and Gretchen Saunders, Chief Business Officer, highlighted the item.


  • Are there fines from the State if the district is not compliant?
  • Will funding be impacted if the district is not compliant?
  • Safe Schools funds will be allocated automatically
  • Non-compliant districts have paid penalties
  • When are we going to right size the district?
  • Over 1000 positions have been eliminated to date
  • There are risks if district disregards the law
  • Challenge statute through litigation and lobbying options
  • Voices are falling on deaf ears in Tallahassee
  • Is there any flexibility with Safe schools/Mental Health Law?
  • Tallahassee sets the guidelines, there is no flexibility
  • School Board should consider ways to increase district funds
  • A referendum is a possibility
  • For Profit Charter Schools are an issue
  • Safe School’s application required
  • Safe School’s department will be created within Department of Education beginning July 1, 2018
  • How does HCPS safety of schools compare to other districts?
  • Pupil/security ratio is higher in HCPS than surrounding districts
  • Any hope that legislative body may loosen rules for Guardian Program?
  • Legislative Budget Commission has ability to have movement of small funds
  • School Board member requested Workshops on SB 7026 and HB 7055

Motion by Mrs. Stuart, second by Vice Chair Shamburger, requesting that a letter be drafted detailing the School Board’s concerns regarding the Constitution Revision Commissions education proposals 4, 43, 45 & 71, as well as, the additional proposals 10, 37, 39 and 93.  Further requested that this letter be drafted by close of business tomorrow March 21, 2018 and emailed to all commissioners when completed.  Motion withdrawn by Mrs. Stuart.


  • Not supportive of changing Constitution in entirety
  • School Board will need an in-depth conversation
  • Meetings end Tuesday, March 27, 2018
  • Contact Constitutional Revision Committee individually
  • Recommends to set aside February Workshops for Legislative discussions





Comments made by Mrs. Griffin, Mr. Porter, Mrs. Gray, Mrs. Stuart and Mrs. Snively.

13.00 Information Items: None

Hearings on Policies or Business Items

Superintendent Comments (Section E)

Suspended Agenda:  None

Other Business and Board Comments

Adjournmentwith no further business the meeting was adjourned at 3:35 p.m. (Audio recording on file.)

HCPS publishes minutes of School Board meetings after Board approval. Although the online minutes do not include signatures, citizens may arrange to review the official documents by completing a public records request with the Communications Department.

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