March 21, 2007 School Committee Minutes


Quincy, Massachusetts - March 21, 2007
Regular Meeting of the Quincy School Committee

Regular Meeting

A regular meeting of the Quincy School Committee was held on Wednesday, March 21, 2007 at 7:00 p.m. in the Squantum Elementary School. Present were Mrs. Anne Mahoney, Mr. Kevin Mulvey, Mr. Dave McCarthy, Ms. Linda Stice, Mr. Jim Timmins, and Mayor Phelan, Chairman.

Chairman Presiding

The Superintendent called the roll and Mrs. Dwyer was absent. Also present were: Dr. Richard DeCristofaro, Secretary, and Mrs. Tefta Burrelli, Clerk; Drs. Mariano and Pattavina. Messrs. O’Brien, Ryan, Walsh, McPhee, Keith Segalla, and Mullaney; Ms. Powell, and Roberts. Paul Phillips, QEA President, Mr. Brawley represented Citywide and North Quincy High Associate Member, Tara McFarland were present.

The Committee observed a moment of silence for former Quincy Fire Chief, Edward F. Barry, who recently passed away.

Reg. & Exec. Mins. Approved 3/7/2007

On a motion by Ms. Stice seconded by Mr. Timmins, the Committee approved the regular and executive session minutes for March 7, 2007. On a roll call vote, the motion passed 6-0. Mrs. Dwyer was absent.

Welcome by Squantum Principal

Principal, Don Houghton, welcomed the members to the Squantum Elementary School. Also present was Ms. Ann Marie Ford, Assistant Principal. had a full week of activities. This week, students took the MCAS and last night there was a PTO meeting. This Friday night the movie, Aladdin, will be shown for students. Mr. Houghton praised his students who perform community service. He thanked the committee for the full day kindergarten, the small class size, and the Trophy’s reading program.

Student Recognition

Wrestling Coach, Patrick Lane, introduced three outstanding student wrestlers-- Jon Tan and Phillips Kelly from North Quincy High School and Camilo Arredondo from Quincy High School. The students received Outstanding Achievement Awards from the Committee. Also present was Christina Manipon, Quincy High School student who was recognized for her excellence in Culinary Arts. Ms. Manipon participated in the Governor’s inauguration. and on March 2, at the Anthony Spinizolla Careers in Culinary Arts Contest, she won a $42,000 scholarship. She received an Outstanding Student Award from the Committee.

The Robotics Team came in third at the Robotics competition in Florida. The team was awarded the Delhi-Driving Tomorrows Technology award. The team is now looking forward to the next competition on March 22-24 at Boston University. The Committee is invited to dinner on Friday evening.

The Superintendent thanked everyone who attended Beatlemania. Due to the inclement weather, there was not the usual crowd, however, close to 500 people attended. The proceeds from this event provides many mini grants for teachers and students. A special thanks went to Keith Segalla, Frank Santoro and Linda Santoro for all their hard work. The next event is the Partnership Breakfast on March 29. The last two events for the school year will be Evening at the Pops and the Historic Walk for Education on Saturday, June 2.

Ms. Janet Powell spoke to the trauma sensitive schools. Quincy has applied and received grants since 2005. These grants allow Quincy to train staff on the impact of trauma on the learning process.

Mr. Jim McGuire, Point Webster Principal, reported on the Partnership event with Roche Brothers. Students are transported by school bus to the supermarket where they survey customers. Mr. Timmins stopped in that day and said he found it to be an invaluable lesson. There was tremendous interaction between students, workers and customers.

The Superintendent commended Mr. Tim Carew and the North Quincy High School’s Renaissance students who put on a very impressive performance.

Open Forum

At the Open Forum, Mr. Henry Brawley, Citywide is asking the Committee to take another look at foreign language in the middle schools. They would like a full foreign language curriculum in the middle schools.

Mr. Paul Phillips, QEA, spoke to the three univent water leaks at Quincy High School at the East Wing. The QEA wants to make sure that the building is safe. Water was coming out of the light and electrical sockets.

Also, is has been over 200 days without a contract, and it has been one year since the first meeting. He asked that the Committee do something to get this resolved because we are heading for unfortunate waters.

Bldg. & Grounds

Mr. Joe Canavangh reported that Maintenance continues to work on heating issues--boilers, heat pumps, work orders and emergency calls. Squantum’s will get a new intercom system and it will be done in-house. With regard to the leaks at the East Wing of Quincy High School; the univents are over 40 years old and electrolysis has taken place. Maintenance is working to rectify the situation. Principal Santoro said he has notified the entire population, staff, and students.


The next Quincy High School Building Committee meeting will be on Monday, March 26 at 2:00 p.m. The committee has reviewed the four firms who answered the RFQ. After interviews a selection will be made. A book was given to staff for them to choose how their classroom will look. The principal, staff, and administrators will give feed back. Some members met with SMMA to discuss the interior of the building.

School Surveys

Parker School Principal, Maryanne Palmer, Jim McGuire, Point Webster principal, Lawrence Taglieri, Broad Meadows Principal and Diane O’Keeffe, principal of Beechwood Knoll were present and explained how principals assess their schools with the help of their school surveys. They explained how they prepare their surveys, who they survey, the collection process, who responds, and who analyzes. They explained their goals, how they collect their data, and the end results. Parker School had its survey reformatted by Mary Fredrickson to allow for computer scanning. Surveys are also translated into other languages. Results of surveys will be shared with staff, students, and parents.

Wind Turbine

Ms. Emily Lebo informed the Committee of a renewable energy grant Quincy High received from the Department of Education. Mr. Swanson put together a team. They sent in a proposal and Quincy High School received the grant. A lab will be built on the bridge of Quincy High School. A collection system will be installed to gather the energy. Mrs. Lebo is seeking permission from the Committee to move forward.

There are three different systems. A wind turbine which will be installed on the roof of the East wing. It is 33’ high with a 12’ wing span. Engineers will check to see if this can be installed. The photo voltaic will be installed on the patio of the CTE. This will be a learning laboratory. Through the Mayor’s office, we will be eligible for green start money. A weather station will be put on the bridge. Mr. Swanson, who was also present, added that this will make students want to understand technology. They will monitor the system, do measurements. They will put a large planter and grow herbs. Students in the ninth grade will be introduce to weather. We have to spend the money by June. This equipment can be installed on the new high school. The teachers are very excited. On March 29 there is a meeting with SMMA who will look at the plans for this building.

Mr. Ryan explained that on he will be attending an energy committee on March 29 to make sure whatever they are doing is structurally sound and installed properly, if it can be moved to the new school. This would give us another point for the Mass CHPS program. Mr. Ryan will have the specific reviews and make a recommendation to the Committee. This wind turbine would be 15 to 30’ above the roof line. It hasn’t been decided as yet where it will go on the new high school.

The Committee asked for more specifics and a rough drawing before they vote on it. Also, the Committee asked if there was an outreach to the community. Mrs. Lebo will contact Councilor Gutro.

BM to Canobie Lake Approved

On a motion by Mr. McCarthy, seconded by Mrs. Mahoney, the Committee Committee approved a trip for Broad Meadows students to travel to Canobie Lake, NH on June 6, 2007. The ayes have it.

Vandalism @ Marshall

At Mr. McCarthy’s request, Ken McPhee updated the Committee on the vandalism at the Marshall School. Windows and lights around the parking lot were broken. This is happening late at night. The police are investigating and will do frequent checks around the building.

Energy Audit

The Mayor reported that the City has an Energy Management Audit. This is a new state law. Quincy will be investing in more energy, boilers, water fixtures, etc. Honeywell will do a presentation to the Committee. School buildings will have a lot of work done. Over the next 18 months, $15 to $40 million dollars will be invested.


The Mayor attended a hearing at the state house regarding the GIC. Mr. Phillips came and some retirees. They spoke in favor of it. He asked the Committee to contact the state legislation. Quincy would save considerable amount of money if it was in the Group I state health insurance. This bill would allow the cities and towns just the option to opt into that plan.

The Quincy School District Technology Plan has been approved through June 30, 2008 by the Department of Education.

Policy Subcommittee

Ms. Stice reported that the Policy Subcommittee has met a couple of times in February and March regarding students’ fees for school activities. A notice was sent to all principals asking them to list those activities for which students pay a fee.

In discussing the DIP, they came up with 23 different topics. Only three of them will need a task force set up. They are:

  1. Study group configuration
  2. Study in house programs for outplaced students. What could we do within our school system.
  3. How we address and assess Giftedness. APC program in all middle schools.

The Superintendent will inform the Committee how he intends to address the evaluation of his staff.

Beginning the 2007 school year, the Committee will receive each quarter an attendance report for each school in their packet.

To SPED Subcommittee

On a motion by Ms. Stice, seconded by Mr. Timmins, a policy for the implementation of IEPs was referred to the Special Ed. Subcommittee. The ayes have it.

To Policy Subcommittee

On a motion by Ms. Stice, seconded by Mr. Mulvey, records of students moving in and out of the school system, services provided, assessments, and grant monies available was referred to the Policy Subcommittee. The ayes have it. The Committee is interested in how large a gap there is to get and to give out students’ records.

SPED Subcommittee

Mr. Timmins reported that the SPED Subcommittee met. There was a good turn out. The SPED staff did a great presentation. They have an overview of the ports of data and transition. Ellie Papile gave great insight.

Elem. Report Cards to Policy Subcommittee

On a motion by Ms. Stice, seconded by Mr. Mulvey, Elementary Report Cards was put into the Policy Subcommittee. The ayes have it.


The Committee noted the following resignations:

Guidance: Laurie Guthrie


The Committee noted the following retirements:

Paraprofessional: Carol Gardner


On a motion by Ms. Stice, seconded by Mr. Mulvey, the Committee adjourned for the evening at 9:05 p.m. There was no executive session. On a roll call vote, the motion passed 6-0. Mrs. Dwyer was absent.