Apache Junction school board approves purchase of $3,500 camera to record meetings

A $3,500 NewTek NDIHX-PTZ camera and equipment will be purchased to record, archive and post to YouTube Apache Junction Unified School District Governing Board meetings, the governing board decided at a Nov. 14 meeting.

“This item was … discussed at our last work session. We were presented a number of different options in order to be able to record our board meetings and have them posted publicly within a short period of time so that they could be viewed shortly after the meeting took place,” AJUSD Governing Board President Jodi Ehrlich said.

All governing board meetings will be uploaded to YouTube within 24 hours, according to a document with the agenda at https://az01901895.schoolwires.net/Page/9083.

“Once it is set up, it is basically you start recording it… If we wanted to, we would be able to … zoom in and zoom out, but for the purpose at this point and time, we would just have it on. It would be videotaping,” AJUSD Superintendent Dr. Krista Anderson said. “My hope is that we would have it play live and then the next day our IT Department would be able to come in and take it and then upload it into YouTube so that there wouldn’t be any additional staff or anyone who would need to run it.”

“So it would be a live stream on our website?” board member Michael Weaver asked.

“That is what I believe is going to be able to happen,” Dr. Anderson said. “That is what it says it will do for us.”

Vice President Dena Kimble said a constituent had asked her why the board wasn’t considering having someone videotape the meetings for free as in the past.

Dr. Anderson said it would cost more to have an employee do it than the one-time cost of the camera and equipment.

“It wasn’t necessarily free. We have compensated individuals doing some extra duties within our district by not assigning them necessarily a full case load in their teaching contract so that they have that flexibility piece of it, where we’ve given them comp time,” Dr. Anderson said. “When you look at that a little bit closer, by not having one single class being taught can range anywhere from $5,000 to $9,000 a year. So $3,500 that will last us five to seven years is much more cost-effective for the district in the long run.”

The board voted 5-0 to approve the purchase. Voting yes were President Ehrlich, Vice President Kimble and governing board members Mr. Weaver, Cami Garcia and Christa Rizzi.

The board voted 5-0 to approve the following:

  • rescinding and nullifying all current and past policies of the Apache Junction Unified School District No. 43 except for human resources.
  • adopting the policy manual that has been developed with consulting assistance from the Arizona School Boards Association.
  • employee stipends for Meaghan Davis, Bethany Ligon and Robyn Gonzales for the 2017-18 school year in the amount of $2,000 each.
  • in a consent agenda, the hiring of Mandy Todd for Desert Vista Elementary School; Jennifer Bliss, café assistant I at Four Peaks Elementary School, food services; Shannon Delong, café assistant I at Apache Junction High School, food services; Esmeralda Gaytan-Ramos, custodian at Apache Junction High School, maintenance; and Teresa Smith, custodian at Desert Vista Elementary School, maintenance.
  • in a consent agenda, resignation of Verde Boughton, cafeteria lead at Four Peak Elementary School, food services; Ana Chaidez, café assistant I at at Cactus Canyon Junior High School, food services; David Downey, custodian at Apache Junction High School; Terry Hamelton, bus driver, transportation department; Beverly Hert, café assistant I at Desert Vista Elementary School, food services; Cari Jo Hudak, café assistant I at Four Peaks Elementary School, food services; and Michael Tucker, network administrator/tech coordinator, tech department.
  • in a consent agenda, leave of absence for Michael Wright, custodian.
  • in a consent agenda, recommendation for dismissal of Alexandrianna Robbins, bus driver with transportation.

In other business:

The governing board’s next meeting is 6 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 28, in the AJUSD board room at 1575 W. Southern Ave. in Apache Junction. The agenda will be posted at https://az01901895.schoolwires.net/Page/9081.


Editor Richard Dyer can be reached at rdyer@newszap.com

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