Sept. 25, 2019 School Committee Meeting


Regular Meeting of the Quincy School Committee

Wednesday, September 25, 2019, 6:30 pm
Coddington Building

I. Approval of Minutes:

Regular Meeting Minutes for September 11, 2019

II. Open Forum:

An opportunity for community input regarding the Quincy Public Schools.
Community in this context is defined as a resident of the City of Quincy, a parent of a student who attends the Quincy Public Schools, or an employee of the Quincy Public Schools. Non-community persons not permitted to speak at Open Forum may submit written statements to the School Committee.  After giving his or her name and address, each speaker may make a presentation of no more than four minutes to the School Committee. An individual may not exchange their time or yield to others.

III. Superintendent’s Report:

A. Inspire Quincy
B. Quincy College Appointing Board
C. Mentor Program Meeting
D. High School Open House Events for Grade 8 Students & Families

○ North Quincy High School, October 22
○ Quincy High School, October 15

E. BOKS Program
F. Fall Institute
G. Professional Educator Status Reception, October 23
H. South~West Opening Celebration, Sunday, October 27
I. School & Program Improvement Plan Schedule
J. Capital Improvement Plan
K. Parent Academies:
L. Health & Wellness Symposium, October 10
M. ArtsFest, September 27-29
 N. City of Presidents 5K Road Race/Walk, Sunday, September 29

IV. Old Business:


V. New Business:

A. Health Services Program Improvement Plan Ms. Bailey
B. Student Support Services Program Improvement Plan Ms. Papile
C. Overnight Travel (Out of the Country):

1. Quincy High School to Athens, Greece and Rome, Italy from April 16 to April
24, 2020
2. North Quincy High School to Tokyo, Japan from April 16 to April 23, 2020.

VI. Additional Business:

VII. Communications:

A. Upcoming School Committee Meetings: October 16, 2019 (South~West Middle
School Auditorium); October 30, 2019; and November 13, 2019 (Coddington
Building) all at 6:30 pm.
B. Upcoming Subcommittee Meetings (at the Coddington Building): Wednesday,
October 23: Quarterly Budget & Finance at 6:00 pm; Facilities & Security at 6:15
pm; and Policy at 6:45 pm.

VIII. Reports of Subcommittees:


IX. Executive Session:


X. Adjournment:


Quincy, Massachusetts – September 25, 2019

Regular Meeting of the Quincy School Committee

A regular meeting of the Quincy School Committee was held on Wednesday, September 25, 2019 at the Coddington Building at 6:30 p.m. Superintendent Thomas Koch, Mr. Anthony Andronico, Mr. Paul Bregoli, Mr. Douglas Gutro, Mrs. Kathryn Hubley, and Mrs. Emily Lebo, Vice Chair.

Vice-Chair Presiding

Also present were: Dr. Richard DeCristofaro, Secretary; Ms. Laura Owens, Clerk; Ms. Rita Bailey, Ms. Colleen Connerty, Mr. Michael Draicchio, Mr. James Mullaney, Deputy Superintendent Kevin Mulvey, Ms. Maura Papile, Ms. Erin Perkins, Ms. Madeline Roy, Mr. Keith Segalla; Quincy Education Association President Allison Cox; and Quincy High School Representatives Paige Maze and Stephen Hallahan. School Committee Member Mr. James DeAmicis was absent.


There was a moment of silence for the men and women serving in the armed forces at home and overseas. Mayor Koch also remembered Francis Andronico, grandmother of School Committee member Anthony Andronico, and a long time Election Department worker.

Mrs. Lebo read the following statement into the record: Pursuant to the Open Meeting Law, any person may make an audio or video recording of this public meeting or may transmit the meeting through any medium. Attendees are therefore advised that such recordings or transmissions are being made whether perceived or unperceived by those present and are deemed acknowledged and permissible.


Regular Meeting Minutes Approved 9.11.2019

Mr. Bregoli made a motion, seconded by Mrs. Hubley to approve the Regular Meeting minutes for September 11, 2019 as presented. On a voice vote, the ayes have it.


Open Forum

As no one wished to speak at Open Forum, School Committee moved onto the next item on the agenda.


Superintendent's Report

Dr. DeCristofaro opened the Superintendent’s Report by noting that Mr. Andronico and Mrs. Lebo will be serving on the Quincy College Appointing Board.

The Capital Improvement Plan was recently approved by the Quincy City Council, with many items for Quincy Public Schools buildings, including new buses, upgraded plumbing, flooring, lockers, and other facilities improvements.

The first meeting of the Mentoring Program was held last week, thanks to the sponsorship of the National Association of Government Employees (NAGE), $10,000 annually. Thanks to the leadership of Madeline Roy and Jim Hennessy for once again organizing this important program.

High School Open Houses for Grade 8 students will be held on October 15 at Quincy High School and October 22 at North Quincy High School.

Information and educational resources on Vaping was shared with School Committee via email. Parent Academy events will be held on October 8 at North Quincy High School and October 22 at Quincy High School on vaping.

In partnership with the South Shore YMCA, the Splash program is for Grade 3 students who are non-swimmers to learn the basics of water safety and swimming skills. The program is being expanded to include Grade 2 students this year.

The BOKS program will begin the week of September 30, the fourth year of the program sponsored by the Reebok Foundation in memory of Emily Zarnoch. In last school year, 34 staff members administered the exercise program with over 650 elementary and middle school students before school twice a week.

A Saturday Fall Institute for elementary and middle school students will be sponsored by Mayor Koch and include opportunities for enrichment in art, music, health & wellness and STEM activities.

The high school marching band has reached the milestone of 100 members, including the color guard. The support of the Quincy Band Boosters has been instrumental in the development of the program, along with Mayor Koch who provided funding for the new uniforms.

The ArtsFest will be held on the weekend of September 28-29, over 100 submissions from elementary, middle, and high school students, sponsored by the Quincy Art Association and the Quincy Park & Recreation Department. The City of Presidents 5K Road Race/Walk will be September 29 at 9:30 am, close to 500 registrants.


Old Business

There was no Old Business on the School Committee Meeting Agenda.


New Business

Health Services PIP Presentation

Coordinator of Health Services Rita Bailey opened her presentation by reflecting on the Health Service Team Goals from 2018-19. Wellness Team members worked with middle and high school students on “unplugging” from electronics and realizing the influence of social media. For 2019-2020, the Health Services Team will focus on Anxiety and supporting LBGTQ students. Professional Development will cover the topics of Nutrition and Mental Health, Understanding Anxiety and Helping Students Develop Coping Skills, Understanding PANS/PANDAS. Work will continue on the QPS Nursing Guidelines, Procedures, and Protocols Manual. The Health, Nutrition, and Wellness Advisory Council meets four times per year, inviting community resources in to consult on promoting school wellness.

Health Services End-of-Year Report for 2018-2019 documents 101,819 student encounters, including 2,625 students with regular healthcare needs. QPS Nurses have a return to class rate of 94.8%, serve as trainers for CPR/AED with 87 staff members certified. In addition, QPS Nurses collaborate with local pediatricians on concussion monitoring and many other medical issues.

Health Services initiatives include A Matter of Heart, in its 6th year of training Grade 8 students on CPR/AED and the Big Smiles Dental program.

Student Support Services PIP Presentation

Senior Director of Student Support Services Maura Papile presented the Student Support Program Improvement Plan for 2019-2020 by reviewing the initiatives being collaborated by the Student Support Services staff. The Student Support Services Staff consists of Guidance Counselors, School Psychologists, Middle School Health Educators, High School Health Interventionists, Physical Education Educators, Homelessness Coordinator, Supervisors of Attendance, as well as School Nurses. The focus for this year is on collaboration and student engagement; the Be Well Initiatives are informed by the implications of the VOCAL Survey, “being the best you” growth mindset, encouraging peers to make healthy decisions; using the school community to reinforce school engagement; setting personal goals with trusted adults; addressing challenges together; and empowering students to make change through education.

The VOCAL survey results showed that while 95% of 4th, 5th , and 8th grade students feel that teachers care about them as a person and adults at their schools treat all students with respect, the majority did not feel that students were involved in deciding school rules. With the critical issue of Vaping and its effect on student health and well-being, Health Educators will be presenting factual information to support students making healthy decisions. Positive peer messaging will be through the SADD chapters supporting the Be Well Initiative through monthly events and timely topics.

In Grade 5, the Be Well Initiative will be for Social Media; students will learn about the challenges (increasing rates of anxiety and depression) and benefits of social media use, again with the goal of making healthy choices and incorporating physical activity.

Professional Development by Charlie Appelstein based on his book No Such Thing as a Bad Kid will be for Grades 5 & 7 teachers, Principals, Assistant Principals, Guidance Counselors, School Psychologists, Health Educators, Health Interventionists, and Physical Education Teachers.

The Peer Mentoring Program “Roots and Wings” was piloted at North Quincy High School last year and will expand to Quincy High School this year. For Grade 10, the FLASH (Family Life and Sexual Health) Curriculum will be implemented with Grade 10 students. The 2nd year of the SADD Summit will expand to include Middle School students, the fall event will focus on goal setting with high school students mentoring the middle school students.

Mr. Gutro asked Ms. Bailey about the statistics, do these represent a change from previous years. Ms. Bailey said there has been a decrease in concussions and feels that reflects prevention education. The student return to class rate is slightly improved, even though the student interactions increased by 20%. Some of that may be attributed to upgrade in SNAP software. Increased medication dosages can reflect more students with chronic conditions such as diabetes that require multiple interactions with the nursing staff daily.

Mr. Gutro asked whether there was an increase in encounters due to anxiety or vaping. Ms. Bailey said that level of detail can be provided, does not have the breakdown available tonight. Mr. Gutro asked about Vaping and Health education, Ms. Papile said that for the last few years, this has been a topic covered in the middle school Health classes. This year, core curriculum teachers will become involved, the theory being that the consistent message from trusted adults will have a positive effect. Mr. Gutro asked about custodian involvement in the Wellness Team, Ms. Bailey said that the custodians are now part of the teams and share information about maintenance and provide opportunity for comment.

Mrs. Hubley complimented the Big Smiles program and received confirmation that the program will be at all elementary, middle, and high schools this year.

Mr. Bregoli asked to consider making CPR/AED mandatory for all QPS staff members. Dr. DeCristofaro said that this idea has merit, but would need to be explored with the Quincy Education Association.

Mr. Bregoli asked whether the Health curriculum includes dating violence, Ms. Papile said defining healthy relationships and awareness is supported in middle school Health Education curriculum and through support from DOVE. The new high school Sexual Health curriculum has an emphasis on consent and boundaries for all students.

Mr. Bregoli asked if all concussions were Athletics related, and is concerned about Girls Lacrosse as they do not wear helmets. Requested a letter be sent to the MIAA from School Committee that supports the requirement. Mr. Bregoli made this in the form of a motion.

Mrs. Lebo asked for clarification, Mr. Bregoli said Boys Lacrosse requires helmets and Girls Lacrosse does not.

Mayor Koch said that both Boys and Girls Soccer are helmetless.

Mr. Gutro seconded the motion and requested a breakdown of concussions by sport.

Mr. Gutro supports the letter being sent to the MIAA requesting the rationale, would like to see the data.

Mrs. Hubley agrees that she does not have enough information, suggested moving to the Athletics & Wellness Subcommittee for further discussion.

Mr. Bregoli withdrew his motion.

Mayor Koch agreed with the referral to Athletics & Wellness Subcommittee but is concerned about starting down this road.

Dr. DeCristofaro said we can request information from the MIAA prior to the Athletics & Wellness Subcommittee.

Mr. Gutro asked if the Athletic Directors can research whether any other cities or towns mandate the use of helmets for Girls Lacrosse.

Mr. Andronico asked about parental notification for the revised high school FLASH curriculum. Ms. Papile said the high schools will post the information on their websites; Mr. Andronico suggested information be sent directly to parents.

Mrs. Lebo said a Parent Academy around the FLASH curriculum would be helpful and noted that it is being implemented at both middle and high school. Ms. Papile said the Health Educators met in a vertical team to do curriculum planning and alignment over the summer. The educators are also integrating other resources and the high school classes are beginning this week.

Mrs. Lebo said that the School Nurses are also supporting the introduction of this curriculum. Mrs. Lebo requested to see a Curriculum Map for the Social Emotional & Physical Health areas.

Mrs. Lebo said that Mr. Bregoli’s idea about CPR/AED is a good idea, but noted it is a 7-hour class for full certification. There are introductory classes available. Ms. Bailey said that each school has an Emergency Response Team of CPR/AED certified staff members.

Mr. Bregoli asked if all Athletic Trainers have access to Portable AEDs and Ms. Bailey confirmed they do.

Mr. Gutro asked about the Program Improvement Plan goals, what is different from previous years. Mrs. Lebo said that typically these programs goals evolve in response to emerging trends.

Mr. Gutro asked if SADD participation is increasing or decreasing. Ms. Papile said it is continuing to grow, it is only a few years old at the middle schools and the Guidance staff have surveyed students to determine their interests.

Mr. Gutro noted that the Smoking Policy is in Subcommittee for updating to include Vaping.

Mrs. Lebo made a motion to approve the Health Services and Student Support Services Program Improvement Plans. Mrs. Hubley seconded the motion and on a voice vote, the ayes have it.

Dr. DeCristofaro thanked Ms. Bailey and Ms. Papile for their efforts, these Program Improvement Plans cover such critical areas, their involvement and connections to so many areas of Quincy Public Schools are evident. It is remarkable to see that students will be setting their own goals and having an impact on their own schools.


New Business

Out of the Country Travel

Mayor Koch made a motion to approve the Out of the Country Travel of North Quincy High School to Tokyo, Japan from April 16 to 23, 2020. Mrs. Hubley seconded the motion and on a voice vote, the ayes have it.

Mayor Koch made a motion to approve the Out of the Country Travel of Quincy High School to Athens, Greece and Rome, Italy from April 16 to 24, 2020. Mrs. Hubley seconded the motion and on a voice vote, the ayes have it.


Additional Business

Mrs. Lebo announced that Mrs. Hubley will be serving on the Substance Use Advisory Board convened by Norfolk County Sheriff Jerome McDermott.



Upcoming School Committee meetings will be held on October 16, 2019 (South~West Middle School); and October 30, 2019 and November 13, 2019 (Coddington Building). All meetings will begin at 6:30 pm.

Upcoming Subcommittee Meetings will be held on October 23, 2019: Quarterly Budget & Finance (6:00 pm); Facilities, Transportation & Security (6:15 pm); and Policy (6:45 pm).


Reports of Subcommittees

All School Committee and Subcommittee meeting minutes are posted online at

There were no Subcommittee Meeting Reports on the Agenda.


Executive Session

There was no Executive Session.



Mayor Koch made a motion to adjourn for the evening at 8:00 p.m. The motion was seconded by Mrs. Hubley and on a voice vote, the ayes have it.