February 2005 Board of Directors Meeting Minutes

Attending: Jesus Garcia, chair; Jeff Passe; Peggy Altoff; Dennis Banks; Lynne Boyle-Baise ; Joseph Braun; Bruce Damasio; David Faerber; Mark Finchum; Syd Golston; Susan Griffin; Diane Hart; Stephen Johnson; Michael Koren; Denee Mattioli; Kelly Palmer; Judy Parsons; Chris Pratt-Consoletti; Eileen Sheehy; Shelly Singer; Lynda Wagner; Carol Warren; Marsha Yoder; Ruben Zepeda; Paul Horne

NCSS Staff: Susan Griffin: Al Frascella; Arthur Ganta; EllaMcDowell; Ana Post; Cassandra Roberts; Timothy Daly (recorder).

I. Review and Approval of Agenda

Motion: ...to approve agenda


II. Review and Approval of of November 2004 Meeting Minutes

Motion: ...to approve agenda.


III. Review of Reports

A. President

Jesus Garcia presented his report. Explained ideas for planning International Social Studies conference. Efforts are currently focusing on Kyoto, Japan. Planning for summer 2007.

B. President-Elect/Kansas City Conference Planning

Jeff Passed presented a report. Nearly 480 proposals were submitted electronically, and about 150 were submitted on paper. Reviewers will evaluate proposals electronically. Passe invited board members to serve as reviewers to evaluate proposals in their subject area.

C. Vice President

Peggy Altoff presented a report to the board.

D. Financial Report through 31 December 2004

Arthur Ganta presented the financial report through December 31, 2004.

Motion: ... to accept the financial report.


E. Staff Reports

Susan Griffin presented and summarized the written staff report.

The board discussed issues related to the online membership directory. Should members be able to opt out? Limit information available online?

IV. Review of NCSS Strategic Plan

The board reviewed the progress of the strategic plan to date, and discussed priorities for the coming year. Among the objectives that the board rated as high priorities are; improving and increasing the variety of information and materials for effective social studies instruction; Increasing NCSS member knowledge and understanding of educational policies and the political and regulatory process; increasing joint membership among the local, state, and regional councils and NCSS; increasing the retention rate for all membership categories; and increasing collaboration with the business community on common goals to create and education and engaged citizenry, informed consumers, and skilled workers.

V. Continuing Business

A. Review of Governance Transition Recommendations

Stephen Johnson introduced report of GTT. In November, the GTT presented a preliminary report to the board listing recommendations on board restructuring. Summarized the transition team work so far. The board discussed the process for reviewing the report during the Saturday portion of the meeting.

The board adjourned until Saturday morning.

Saturday, February 12.

The meeting was called to order at 8:30 am.

Stephen Johnson reviewed the creation and assignment of the governance transition team. The transition team was appointed to advise the board on the implementation the recommendations of the Governance Task Force. The purpose of today's discussion is to provide guidance to the GTT in order to present a final recommendation on board composition for vote in May, and to start the process of collecting signatures on petitions to amend the constitution.

Johnson reported on other work of the GTT. HOD and committees will also be examined. There is no timeline on the committees yet. Passe added that BOD changes require constitutional changes so that the GTT focused on this. Altoff reminded board liaisons to committees and states to communicate with these groups about what the GTT is doing. She asked GTT to provide information to board members. This information should also be in TSSP.

The board separated into groups to discuss the GTT recommendation, and focused on the recommendations to changes the composition of the board and reduce its size. The board noted that the goal of a smaller board was not to save money, but to become more efficient. Although there would be cost savings for meetings for a smaller board, the reduced size would give NCSS the opportunity to increase the effectiveness of the board by holding additional meetings, providing additional board development assistance, or having presentations by experts to assist the board with vital issues facing the social studies community.

The board also discussed the need to ensure adequate classroom teacher representation on the board, and suggested changes to the recommendations made by the GTT. The GTT will discuss the results of the board's review, and present a final recommendation for approval by the board in May. If the board approves the changes, it will circulate a petition to begin the process of amending the NCSS Constitution to enact these changes.

B. Discussion of Procedure for Selecting Social Studies and the Young Learner Editor

C. Discussion of Policy on Fundraising

Dennis Banks introduced the draft policy, which was the result of a board request to investigate a policy on accepting funds form contributions. Policies fall into 2 categories: what kinds of gifts do you accept gifts from and who do you get sponsorships from.

Under this policy, NCSS would reserve the right to refuse donations from corporations which are not consistent with the NCSS mission. Other reasons include if the donation violates any laws, includes too many restrictions, or requires action from NCSS which we do not wish to undertake. It is generic, but provides broad guidelines.

The second policy is sponsorships.

Motion: ... adoption of policy on gifts and on sponsorships (Banks/Koren)

The board suggested that further fund raising procedures are needed. NCSS should consider how it raises money overall and have a uniform structure for doing so. There are ongoing fund raising efforts and episodic fund raising efforts, but NCSS has no mechanism for looking the overall fund raising needs and plans of the council.

Motion: to postpone until May. (Altoff/Passe)

Passed (Postponed)

Jesus Garcia asked Ruben Zepeda, Peggy Altoff, Dennis Banks , and Mark Finchum to work on revising the policy and adding a policy for overall fund raising with input from staff members Ana Post and Ella McDowell

D. FASSE Annual Conference Raffle

Jesus Garcia requested that a discussion of the FASSE board raffle be added to the agenda. As there were no objections, the board moved to discussion of the raffle.

Motion: recommend that the FASSE raffle be replaced by a budgeted line item collected through an addition to conference registration to be determined by the board, and that the FASSE board be consulted prior to this taking effect. (Banks/Wagner)


The board noted that there have been difficulties with the FASSE raffle at the annual conference. These difficulties were often the result of miscommunication, and uncertainties about the respective responsibilities of FASSE and local arrangements committee volunteers. Board member and FASSE vice-chair Mark Finchum commented that FASSE would not be against an addition to registration, but would want to maintain some event at the Annual Conference to give visibility to FASSE.

The board also discussed concerns with raising fees, and its effect on under-represented groups. IT concluded, however, that NCSS would be able to do more to address equity issues with increased funding that could be used for scholarships, or other similar programs.

E. Discussion of Conflict of Interest Policy

This will be deferred until May.

F. History Education Matters

Susan Griffin explained NCSS involvement in development of this publication. The document grew out of discussions among NCSS, National History Day, National Archives Foundation, and ABC-CLIO. Griffin requested approval of NCSS being listed on this document.

Motion:.. to approve NCSS being listed (Braun/Mattioli)


G. Policy on Formal Advising

Peggy Altoff introduced the proposed policy on formal advising.

Motion:... that policy be approved by the board, to go into effect July 1, 2005. (Altoff/Braun)


Denee Mattioli suggested that the last item be changed so that the honorarium is paid directly to NCSS and not to the board member and then donated.

The board discussed the honorarium portion of the policy. Some members believed that this would help with a perception that board members are seeking to profit or suspicions of "cronyism." Several board members expressed concern that excepting board members might prevent them from being able to participate in such projects. The board also discussed that this may encourage NCSS to seek experts outside the board.

H. NCSSBoard/Endorsements/Special Projects

1. Approval of Endorsement of American Promise Elementary Edition Education Materials

*Motion: ... to conditionally approve endorsement American Promise Elementary Edition. (Altoff/Banks) *


Altoff explained that NCSS has had a long standing partnership with Farmer's Insurance regarding the American Promise program, but the committee has some concerns. NCSS is already listed as endorsing these materials already. The committee also had concerns with the materials itself.

Approval would be conditional upon addressing concerns. The committee would make recommendations.

2. Approval of The History Channel/Save our History Partnership Request

*Motion: ...that NCSS approve the partnership request with the following conditions.



  1. Mutual approval of materials
  2. Distinguish between NCSS as a sponsor and other, corporate promotional partners.
  3. That endorsement of old materials is contingent upon NCSS review and should be considered separately from new materials.
  4. Any materials included in NCSS publications or the website must be a result of collaboration with NCSS including NCSS editorial review.
  5. Contact and hiring of "ambassadors" be done completely by SOH, with NCSS advice.
  6. Complementary membership would be given to all winners. NCSS would recognize winners who are also NCSS members.
  7. Insist that an NCSS officer be present at the award presentation and present complementary NCSS memberships.

VI. New Business

A. Review of 2004 Committee Meeting Reports

1. Academic Freedom, Ethics and Equity

Liaison Ruben Zepeda reported. The committee wishes that it change the title of the committee to "Social Justice and Academic Freedom." The committee also wishes to establish a "scholarship" for conference attendance. Committee still needs to work on criteria for selection.

Motion: .. to change the name to "Social Justice and Academic Freedom." (Zepeda/Faerber)


Motion: ...to accept recommended changes to committee purpose (remove and add "publications" to (Zepeda/Golston)

Zepeda explained that the committee felt this was redundant. Passe commented that highlighted a "watchdog" role of the committee. Zepeda withdrew the motion and will check with the committee.

2. Assessment

Lynne Boyle-Baise presented the report. The committee wishes to remain an independent committee. The committee would like to update the 1991 statement on assessment.

3. Awards

Lynne Wagner reported. Awards committee will coordinate a how-to apply session. Wagner also suggested that NCSS send a letter of congratulations to state award winners that would also encourage them to submit for the national award.

4. Citizenship

David Faerber reported. The committee discussed governance transition, and requested to continue as a independent committee, or that its responsibilities be undertaken by another committee. Lynne Boyle-Baise asked about the status of the Citizenship Education work group that was a recommendation of the Citizenship Task Force. Susan Griffin explained that NCSS has not addressed the request of the task for to form a work group. NCSS did submit a proposal to Carnegie Corporation for a citizenship project. Simultaneously, and Carnegie funded a campaign for the Civic Mission of Schools. NCSS is now a part of the CMS group. Griffin recommended against competing against our work in CMS. Diane Hart explained that the task force felt that it could form a working group within the new governance model. NCSS has not come up with a work group model yet. Ruben Zepeda explained that the idea of a work group was approved by the board, but the board has had difficulties in operationalize this recommendation. Garcia questions whether the Citizenship Subcommittee could do this work? Mattioli suggested that the Citizenship Subcommittee be elevated into a committee. Garcia suggested that a board committee look at this: Paul Horne, Denee Mattioli, Diane Hart, and Joe Braun volunteered. The board asked to have a report for the May 2005 meeting.

5. Conference

Marsha Yoder presented the committee's report. The committee discussed a site recommendation for the 2010 annual conference, and recommended Denver.

Ella McDowell reported that the committee is reluctant to make any changes to the conference site rotation schedule to go to regular cities. They feel that this would be too burdensome to state or local councils. McDowell explained that NCSS should consider regular cities because it would help in negotiating contracts, and improve logistics. Denee Mattioli agreed and reminded the board that the conference has grown to a point that there are fewer cities in which we can meet. NCSS may want to move to a conference organization model where local volunteers are not needed for as many functions. Marsha Yoder commented that another factor in the committee's reluctance is that the rotation involves more members.McDowell commented that just changing the rotation might help, especially in areas where it is difficult to find appropriate venues. Simply changing the model to rely less on local volunteers would make it possible to include cities in areas where the state and local councils do not have the organizational capacity to support the conference

Motion: ...to approved Denver as the site of the 2010 Annual Conference (Passe/Johnson)


6. Government Relations

Dennis banks presented the committee's report. The committee recommended that it merge with the Public Relations Committee. It asked that the PR and GR committee be scheduled together for the coming conference.

7. Instruction

Carol Warren presented the Instruction Committee report. The committee wishes to continue to do an outreach to local school districts in conference cities. It was not able to organize this for Baltimore, but will attempt to do so in Kansas City. The Instruction Committee felt that it should remain an independent committee.

The committee did not have an update on its revision of the position statement on ability grouping.

The board also discussed the Curriculum Committee which did not send a report. The committee was looking at scope and sequence, and the board discussed whether a task force was needed to look at the scope and sequence.

8. International Activities

Chris Pratt-Consoletti delivered the committee's report to the board. The committee is especially interested in developing an International Social Studies Conference. Garcia is working with members of the committee on planning a conference for Japan.

The committee suggested that the requirement for one-third of the committee membership be International be changed. The committee felt that the committee should remain an independent committee.

9. Membership

Judy Parsons presented the committee's report. The committee discussed the membership brochure, and various ways to reach new teachers.

10. Public Relations

Mark Finchum delivered the Public Relations Committee report. The committee discussed an intern for the Communications Department and recommended that this be continued. The committee felt that information on public relations be given to state councils at the summer leadership conference in additional to government relations.

Jeff Passe pointed out the the committee wanted to oversee a public relations plan and commented that this was a good thing for the committee to be doing. The board also discussed having a pr representative on each committee.

Dennis Banks commented that some of this work is more than one annual meeting can support. NCSS should consider how it can help the committee to work more regularly. Finchum commented that some members could possibly come to SLI to do some of this work.

11. Publications and Social Education Committees

Diane Hart reported on the committee's work. She questioned why there are two committees: the Publications Committee and the Social Education committee and whether this is redundant. Johnson asked whether the committees would be willing to meet to see if these committees could be combined suggested consulting with the committee chairs and director of publications.

12. Research

Shelly Singer presented the committee's report. The committee was very concerned with the possibility of reducing the number of committees and submitted a resolution to regarding this.

13. Teacher Education

Eileen Sheehy presented the committee's report. It wishes to gather data concerning the diminishing social studies instruction in elementary schools. The board expressed its support. Griffin recommended that the committee consult with Mary McFarland and Marcie Taylor-Thoma who are involved in conducting a survey.

14. Technology

Joe Braun reported on the committee's meeting. The committee developed technology guidelines, and worked on proposals to have technology rooms at the annual conference.

B. Approval of Guidelines for Effective Use of Instructional Technology

Joe Braun introduced the proposed guidelines developed by the Technology Select Subcommittee. The committee referred to the ISTE standards based these guidelines on these standards. Braun recommended that the board take action on this in May as there are ISTE standards that have not been included that he felt should be. The board will address these in May.

C. Review and Approval of 2004 HOD Resolutions

04-01 Teaching American History Grant Funding

Supported By: Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Florida, Iowa, Massachusetts, Northern Nevada, Southern Nevada, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Prince George?s County, and Texas

Rationale: The Teaching American History Grants have provided the first step in funding quality professional development opportunities for social studies educators across our nation.

WHEREAS, each LEA grant recipient has utilized Teaching American History Grant funding to provide continuous quality professional development for teachers of American History,

WHEREAS, many states and school districts continue to struggle with the financial burden of providing quality professional development for all social studies professionals,

WHEREAS, NCSS is committed to providing avenues for continual professional growth that result in the creation of effective citizens,

WHEREAS, NCSS recognizes that student achievement is positively affected by the presence of highly qualified teachers who engage in continuous professional development,

BE IT RESOLVED, that NCSS Board of Directors advocate that the U.S. Congress continue funding professional development grant opportunities for not only for the Teaching American History Grants but also to develop other grant programs to address other areas within the social sciences and humanities and that this funding become a permanent item under federal education funding.

Motion: ... to accept.


04-02 NAEP Social Studies Testing

Supported BY: Arkansas, California, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Iowa, Massachusetts, Missouri, Southern Nevada, Ohio, South Carolina and Texas

Rational: Assessments of social studies content areas have been postponed by the US Department of Education and National Assessment Governing Board (NAGB), and current NAGB recommendations are to assess social studies disciplines in grade 12 only ?if resources permit.? In order for each state to maintain high quality social studies education programs, a regularly scheduled program of social studies assessments needs to be maintained.

WHEREAS, many states do not conduct assessments in social studies.

WHEREAS, assessment is the means of determining the effectiveness of curriculum and instruction.

WHEREAS, current NAEP social studies assessments do not include disaggregated data that allow states to compare their students? performance to a national standard.

BE IT RESOLVED, if not already completed

(1) NCSS encourage all state councils to request that the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) include 12th grade assessments in social studies content areas that include disaggregated data.

(2) NCSS notify the Secretary of Education and related officials of the US Department of Education concerning the NCSS position on this issue.

(3) NCSS contact the members of the Senate and House education committees and notify them of their position.

(4) NCSS notify other organizations (including but not limited to) NCHE, CCE, OAH, AHA of this position.

(5) and, NCSS be encouraged to contact appropriate media outlets regarding its position on national social studies testing.

Motion: ... to accept. (Johnson/Yoder)


The board discussed the meaning of the resolution and what action is necessary. The NCSS has already expressed support for continuing NAEP and for also including disaggregated state data. Griffin added that the CMS committee is advocating the Civics NAEP also.

04-03 NCLB Data Gathering Survey Resolution

Supported by: Arkansas, California, Colorado, Florida, Iowa, Massachusetts, Southern Nevada, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania and Texas

Rationale: Social studies should be added as a core academic area to NCLB

WHEREAS: NCLB is up for reauthorization in 2006,

WHEREAS: Federal legislators visited by state council members of NCSS in the summer of 2004 requested accurate data to validate their support for the inclusion of Social Studies as a core academic area of NCLB,

WHEREAS: There has been a significant reduction in resources and instructional time for social studies in the elementary and middle schools across the country,

BE IT RESOLVED, that NCSS should provide opportunities for state councils to collect anecdotes and statistics for the 2005 NCSS Summer Leadership Institute to deliver to legislators and request their support for the inclusion of the social studies as a core academic area in NCLB.

Motion: ... to accept. (Johnson/Banks)


04-05 Commendation for the Minnesota Council for the Social Studies and its

Political Partners

Supported BY: Arkansas, California, Colorado, Florida, Iowa, Massachusetts, Michigan, Nebraska, New Mexico, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Oklahoma

Rational: The challenges faced by states related to the development and revision of social studies standards require the entire participation and involvement of state social studies councils, their members, and their political partners.

WHEREAS, the appointed Commissioner of Education in Minnesota selected a citizens? committee to draft social studies standards in 2003,

WHEREAS, a second group of Minnesota citizens and members of MCSS found the draft standards lacking in academic integrity and accuracy,

WHEREAS, members of MCSS became fully engaged in the struggles to reject the draft standards and replace them with a revised set of content standards,

WHEREAS, the statewide efforts to replace drafts standards with social studies content standards that were more accurate succeeded in the final hours of the 2004 Minnesota legislative session,

BE IT RESOLVED, that the members of the HOD, the NCSS Board of Directors and the NCSS Officers commend the Minnesota Council for the Social Studies for its active participation in the legislative process leading to changes in the social studies standards.

Motion: ... to accept. (Koren/Faerber)


D. Approval of American Anthropological Association Reciprocal Agreement Regarding Annual Conference Registration

The American Anthropological Association proposed an agreement between it and NCSS that would allow members of each organization to attend the other's annual conference at the member rate.

Motion:... to approve (Johnson/Golston)


E. Creation of Reserve Fund

*Motion: that NCSS create a board restricted reserve fund of $3000. (Zepeda/Wagner)


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