News & Announcements

School updates, important dates, and other notices.

Board of Directors Meeting Minutes: March 20, 2018

  1. Call to Order, Roll Call and Recognition of Visitors and Board Co-Chairs
    1. Yelena Hardcopf:Present
    2. Elizaveta Lindman: Present
    3. Christian Schmidt: Present
    4. Alekej Abyzov: Present
    5. Yelena Kurdyumova: Present
    6. Mark Eilers: Absent
    7. Paul Kinsey, Executive Director, ex officio board member: Present
    8. Visitors in attendance: Sergey Porada.
  2. Approval of the Agenda
    Motion by: Alexej Abyzov
    Seconded by: Liza Lindman
  3. Read the Nasha Shkola Mission and Vision – Paul Kinsley
    To be an academically rigorous school preparing students for the world.
    Mission: Nasha Shkola will be a multi-cultural charter school committed to academic excellence, provide a highly-structured learning environment based upon education best practices for students interested in the Russian language and culture, achieved through the collaborative efforts of parents, staff, and the communities we serve.
  4. Open Forum for members of the public wishing to address the board
    No public comments.
  5. Reports

    1. Executive Director report
      1. Enrollment – 120.30; claiming 115
        • Our school lost three students due to issues with busing during the month of March.
        • MARS is how the student count is determined and is adjusted based on the school average daily membership during the course of the school year.
      2. School improvement (Yelena Hardcopf)
        • ESL testing is complete. This assessment has weight when the state analyzes our MCA results. Seventy percent of our students took the test.
      3. Other reports (SPED auditing, Staffing update.)
        • The school was audited by the Minnesota Department of Education as required of all schools.
        • The auditor interviewed staff, looked at documentation, and checked to make sure our school is complying with all state laws.
        • The report will be forthcoming.
        • The school is still looking for a middle school science teacher. Our school is advertising the position and has inquired about a long-term sub.
        • If the school is unable to find a licensed science to teacher for the remainder of the year we can get a variance and hire a community expert to teach for the rest of the school year.
          The school will look into getting a full=time special education teacher. The money received from the state for SPED services can be used to pay this teacher.
      4. Marketing Committee Report (Yelena Kurdyumova)
        • Marketing Committee report for March 20, 2018 Nasha Shkola Board Meeting

          Rep. Nelson met in State Capitol with Brooklyn Park Charter School Nasha Shkola.

          Annual Minnesota Charter School Day was held at State Capitol on March 7, 2018.  It gave an opportunity for the charter school community to meet with legislators and urge action of policy and funding issues that affect charter schools and students.

          In Minnesota, charter schools are tuition free independent public schools that are open to and welcome all students, no matter ability or need, and are governed and operated jointly by licensed teachers, parents and community members.

          State Rep. Michael Nelson (District 40A) met in his Capitol office with representatives of Brooklyn Park charter school Nasha Shkola: Yelena S. Kurdyumova,- Board Vice Chair, head of marketing committee, and Sergey A. Porada, – member of marketing committee.

          Yelena S. Kurdyumova told Rep. Michael Nelson that Nasha Shkola charter school increased the number of students in 2017-2018 school year to reach 120. Along with basic K-8 curriculum Nasha Shkola teachers Russian Language, literature, culture, art, to all students interested in getting free of charge foreign language tuition during 9 school years. It is very valuable opportunity, because in the USA there is big shortage of people speaking European foreign language at a proper level, in addition to English, and especially in US consulates and embassies abroad.

          Rep. Nelson expressed support of Nasha Shkola efforts to attract more students to foreign language learning and to make the community aware of the need of the people knowing European languages. He mentioned, as an example, his young family members who learned foreign languages at school and continued education in Europe to pursue further diplomatic work.

          Yelena S. Kurdyumova singled out that successful operation of Nasha Shkola is slowed down by financial shortage for coverage of expenses on each student, teacher’s salaries and health insurance, school bus transportation. Charter school, getting the same amount of financing from the State as traditional public schools, can’t compete with them. Charter school can’t tax its stakeholders to increase its revenue and can’t own real property assets to borrow against, unlike traditional public school. Such fixed base budget greatly limits funds for Nasha Shkola. The highest expense for Nasha Shkola is student bus transportation. Like many other charter schools, it must find a carrier to bus students across several districts, which is a difficult task. Present bus company serving Nasha Shkola elevated rates and now bus transportation expense of Nasha Shkola 10 times exceeds transportation financial aid from the State.

          The problems of Nasha Shkola, discussed by Y. Kurdyumova, caused live interest of Rep. Nelson and met his understanding. He approved her concerns and said, that though he didn’t serve on the Education Committee, he would look into it and do what he can to help.

    2. Financial Report
      1. Monthly Financial Report, Mark Eilers – Treasurer
        • The school had a deficit of $31,782 in fund one.
        • The school had a deficit of $5, 634 in fund two.
        • The school had an audited fund balance of $63,791.
      2. Account Balance
        • $33,807.66 in the schools checking account as of March 20, 2018.
      3. Line of Credit Transfer-$10,000
        • Paul has put $13,000 of cash in as a loan to the school. The school has also borrowed $75,000 borrowed from Venture Bank. The total borrowed is $101,000.
  6. Consent Agenda
    1. Minutes of February 20, 2018 Board meeting.
    2. Financials February 2018.
      Motion to approve the consent agenda with the inclusion of the Marketing Committee report and the changes to the dates for the financials and minutes from January to February as written on the original copy of the agenda for the March meeting.

      Motion by: Christian Schmidt
      Second by: Alexej Abyzov

  7. Old Business
    1. Transportation services update.
      • Our school has talked with a variety of transportation companies about contracting for our bus routes including the route to Saint Michael, but all said no.
      • The bus company could accommodate our morning route to Saint Michael but would not our PM route unless the bus left around 4:45pm from our school.
      • The school has taken a hit in terms of student count due to the inability of our bus company to provide the services guaranteed in a contract for the Saint Michael route. The company has been picking up kids in the morning, but parents must come to pick up kids in the afternoon. This has gone on for more than two weeks. Our school has lost three long time students due to these issues and is likely to lose four more long time students for a total of seven students.
      • The board discussed how to proceed discussing the possibility of buying a van for long distance routes. Our school has a willing driver but no vehicle.
      • The board discussed the costs and savings of getting vans.
      • The board had an extensive conversation about purchasing vans, rentals, and new contracts with bus companies to determine what the best course of action would be.
      • The board decided to pursue the following goals: first attempt to contract with a bus company for the route to Saint Michael, second option would be to rent a van for the remainder of the school year, and the third option was purchasing a van to accommodate the route.
      • The director told the board he would keep the members informed of negotiations and costs as he pursues the first option.
      • The board advised the director to continue searching for solutions and to keep the board informed.
    2. Grant writing opportunities.
      The school applied for a Striving Readers Literacy Grant on March 8th. The purpose of the grant is to hire a reading coach to enhance instruction to increase reading proficiency.

      • Another grant called the High-Quality Charter School Expansion and Relocation Grant is a possibility and our lead teacher has researched the qualifications which may prevent us from getting the money. This is a big opportunity for our school and needs to be looked into.
      • The board talked about the grant and decided we need to talk to the grant people.
  8. New Business
    1. Review and update Annual Goals
      • The board discussed progress towards our goals.
      • The board talked about folding the Russian part into the academic achievement part of our goals.
      • The board talked about the Russian language goals and placing them into our academic achievement goals without losing anything.
      • The board talked about this issue extensively.
      • The board went over the Improvement Goals Review Document, goal by goal.
    2. Next school year enrollment projections and programming needs
      • The school has a projected enrollment for next year of 130 students with 22 kindergarteners. The school will write a proposed budget based on 120 students.Motion to table 8.2 and 8.4 until a later date.
        Motion by: Alexej Abyzov
        Seconded by: Yelena Kurdyumova
    3. School calendar for FY 19- approval.
      • The board discussed the school calendar with an emphasis on days off for quarter one.

        Motion to accept the calendar and change the dates of conferences to November 7th and 8th with the 9th as a no school day and November 12th as a teacher work day.

        Motion by: Elizaveta Lindman
        Seconded by Yelena Kurdyumova

    4. Budget FY19 draft (Tabled)
    5. Director Evaluation
      • The board discussed who will do the evaluation as no teacher can do the evaluation. Alexej will send out the form for evaluation.
    6. Annual meeting planning and recruitment.
      • Wednesday June 6th will be the date of the annual meeting at our school. We usually have the meeting in the morning with parents and stakeholders are able vote until 3:30pm.
  9. Other
  10. Adjourn
    Motion to adjourn the meeting at 9:15pm.

    Motion by: Christian Schmidt
    Seconded by: Elizaveta Lindman

The Nasha Shkola Board meets the 3rd Tuesday of each month at 6:30
The finance Committee meets at 5:30 prior to the board meeting.

Items to discuss during the April 17, 2018 meeting:

  1. Call a state representative or senator to discuss education and the importance of funding charter schools.
  2. The board advised the director to continue searching for solutions and to keep the board informed.
  3. Alexej will send the form out, clean it, and it will be filled out.

Nasha Shkola — Russian for Our School — is an academically rigorous K-8 charter school, providing a highly-structured learning environment for students interested in Russian language and culture.

Contact Us

    School Info

    Nasha Shkola
    6717 85th Avenue North
    Brooklyn Park, MN 55445

    Phone: 763-496-5550
    Fax: 763-424-8520

    School Hours
    Monday – Friday:
    8:30 am – 4:30 pm

    Office Hours
    Monday – Friday:
    8 am – 4 pm