Oct. 29, 2008 School Committee Meeting


Regular Meeting of the Quincy School Committee
October 29, 2008

7:00 p.m.
City Council Chambers

I. Approval of Minutes: Regular and Executive Session Minutes for October 15, 2008.

II. Superintendent’s Report:

A. Commissioner Mitchell Chester’s Visit

B. Trauma Sensitive Schools

C. Community Service Learning Recognition Celebration

D. School Walk-through

E. November 4, 2008 (“no school” reminder)

III. Open Forum: An opportunity for community input regarding the Quincy Public Schools. After giving his or her name and address, each speaker may make a presentation of no more than four minutes to the School Committee.

IV. Old Business

A. Update on building projects, renovations, and construction: Mr. Murphy to report.

B. Update on the New Quincy High School:

C. Update on Central: Mrs. Bragg and Mrs. Mahoney to report.

V.  New Business:

A. MCAS/AYP Presentation: See Attachment A.

B. Gifts: Donation of 600 dictionaries from the Quincy Lodge of Elks to our elementary school students. (See Attachment B)

C. Gifts: Donation of $2,218.15 from the Rural Masonic Lodge for the purchase of epi-pens. See Attachment C.

VI. Additional Business:

VII. Communications:

VIII. Hearings: - none

IX. Reports of Special Committees:

A. Policy Subcommittee: Mrs. Bragg to report.

B. Special Ed Subcommittee: Mrs. Mahoney to report.

X Executive Session:

XI. Adjournment:

Subcommittees of the School Committee

Subcommittee Date Referred Business Pending
Budget & Finance
Mariano/Bragg/McCarthy 4/11/2007 HS Health Curriculum
  3/29/2008 Bus Rental Fees
  3/29/2008 Building Rental Fees
  9/10/2008 Revolving Funds 5-yrs. History
School Facilities Management    
Dwyer/Mahoney/Mariano Major Building Projects  
  3/4/98 QHS/Central/Sterling Building Plans
  10/20/2004 ADA Report
  9/7/2005 Alternative Plans for Central Middle School
  2/8/2006 Conservation
  4/9/2008 11.6 School Facility Policy
  4/9/2008 Track
  9/10/2008 NQHS gym floor named
Health, Safety & Security    
Puleo/Mahoney/McCarthy 10/18/2006 NQHS Traffic & Drop off
  4/11/2007 HS Health Curriculum
  3/26/2008 Increase School Breakfast Participation
  5/21/2008 Lockdown Policy
School Policy    
Bragg/Dwyer/McCarthy 1/10/2001 Policy Manual
  2/6/2008 Voting Places
  3/12/2008 Teacher Evaluations
  6/18/2008 Homeless Policy
  9/10/2008 Grade Configurations
  9/24/2008 Warrants
  9/24/2008 Quill Program
Special Education    
Mahoney/McCarthy/Mariano 1/17/2007 Emergency Information Form
  1/17/2007 Substitute Teachers for SPED
  3/21/2007 Implementation of IEPs
  9/24/2008 INSPIRE Initiative
Rules, Post Audit & Oversight    
Channel 22    
Mahoney/McCarthy 10/17/2007 Encourage greater use of



Quincy, Massachusetts - October 29, 2008
Regular Meeting of the Quincy School Committee

Regular Meeting

A regular meeting of the Quincy School Committee was held on Wednesday, October 29, 2008 at the City Council Chambers, City Hall. Present were Mr. Ron Mariano, Mr. Nick Puleo, Mrs. Jo-Ann Bragg, Mrs. Anne Mahoney, Mr. Dave McCarthy and Mayor Tom Koch, Chairman.

Chairman Presiding

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The Superintendent called the roll and Mrs. Dwyer was absent. Present were: Dr. Richard DeCristofaro, Secretary, Mrs. Tefta Burrelli, Clerk. Messrs. O’Brien, Mullaney, Draicchio, Keith Segalla, Dr. Pattavina, Ms. Powell and Roberts. Ms. Tracey Christello, Citywide, and Mr. Paul Phillips, QEA. Meghan Peterson, QHS associate member was present. The Committee observed a moment of silence for all our troops and long time food service worker, Jean Ball, who recently passed away.

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Reg. Session Mins. 10/15/2008

On a motion by Mr. Mariano, seconded by Mr. McCarthy, the Committee approved the amended regular and executive session minutes for October 15, 2008. The ayes have it.

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Commissioner of Education, Chester Mitchell, visited the Marshall School last Friday. The Commissioner was here to listen to trauma sensitive initiatives in the schools. He was impressed with the school and their programs. Representa- tives from Mass Advocates for Children and Principals from Ludlow and Brockton, who are putting these strategies in their schools, were present. A small luncheon at Point Webster was served. The CSL recognition celebration will be held on November 20.

The Superintendent has been visiting schools and walking through to measure the comfort level, the climate, the cleanliness. He invited the members to go with him at any tine.

There was a water main break at 6:30 a.m. at Snug Harbor. The Superintendent t thanked Brian Carlisle, Commissioner Prenderville, Kevin Segalla, and Kevin Murphy. It was a team effort and the water was turned back on and the students went to school.

There will be no school on November 4, Election Day. All parents will be notified by Instant Alert.

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Open Forum

Ms. Tracey Christello, Citywide, thanked the Mayor, Mrs. Bragg, Mrs. Mahoney and Dr. DeCristofaro on behalf of North Quincy High School parents for attending the PAC meeting in October. There was a lot of information they were able to take back to their schools.

Mr. Paul Phillips, QEA President, acknowledge the programs that the Commissioner visited. He was hoping the School Committee would take a stand against Question 1.

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Building Update

Mr. Kevin Murphy reported that Maintenance is in the process of disassembling the first floor of the Vocational Technical building. They have completed the Point Webster Lab for the Print Shop. The Print Shop is moving in there on Saturday. Mr. Dennis McGillvrary partially tore his Achilles’ heel and will be out of work four to six weeks. Work continue with Honeywell on some issues at some schools. Work continues on desk hinges.

The steam pipe gave way at Broad Meadows because it was not properly patched. Honeywell has assumed all responsibility and is replacing everything in that computer lab. It will take at least a month to finish.

The Mayor added that Mr. Cunniff continues to work with Honeywell. A lot of issues still are not fixed. The City is withholding funds until everything is finished.

Mr. Puleo inquired about heat complaints at some schools. Mr. Murphy said the new system is not functioning properly. They are working with Honeywell.

Mrs. Mahoney has received complaints about the front doors at North Quincy High not locking properly. Mr. Murphy said the foreman is working on the doors. There was a pipe leak at the photo lab which did a little damage. It should be fixed next week. Mrs. Mahoney inquired if any chemicals leaked and if they were dangerous. However, everything has been cleaned out.

Mr. McCarthy asked about the electrical issues at the Carpentry Shop at Broad Meadows. Mr. Murphy said there are power issues. The Atrium glass will be re-glazed and re-flashed this Friday.

The intercoms at Atherton Hough and Atlantic have issues. Maintenance is working hard at Merrymount and Atherton Hough. The problem is work can’t be done during the day. The intercoms need to be fixed at night. Mr. Murphy will set up night times with the principals.

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QHS Bldg.Comm. Update by Supt.

Mrs. Dwyer was absent, but the Superintendent thanked her for organizing the tour last Saturday of the new Quincy High School. Everyone was very impressed with the new building. Mr. McCarthy added that the new high school is very impressive. Principal Santoro did a wonderful job explaining the whole lay out.

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Central Bldg. Comm. Update by Mrs. Bragg

Mrs. Bragg reported that they are still waiting for the state to come back with Central’s paper work. Mayor Koch has spoken to Katherine Craven and she said they are reviewing everything and then we will look toward getting the Project Manager.

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The team of Rich O’Brien, Mary Fredrickson, Edie Hughes, Colleen Roberts, and Janet Powell shared the MCAS/AYP results and the growth in the school system. Mr. O’Brien commended Mary Fredrickson. The task involved with the administration and management of the MCAS testing is a phenomenal task. Mary does a tremendous job every year. The No Child Left Behind law requires school districts to have every student demonstrate proficiency by 2014. In Massachusetts, proficiency is determined by a student achieving a minimum ELA and Math MCAS score of 240. It used to be 220, but the bar has been raised to 240 and 220 in Science. The team reviewed the scores from grades 3 to 10. Quincy’s Composite Proficiency Index for 2007 & 2008 is 85.4 in ELA and 76.5 in Math. By 2014 we need to reach 100. Ms. Fredrickson reviewed how MCAS results are converted to AYP Points. The high school AYP Performance Rating in ELA was one high school very high and one high school high, in Math, both high schools were rated high. Quincy’s students are meeting the challenge.

The Committee asked questions regarding the diverse population in Quincy, ELL and SPED classes, the Committee thought that no mater what, people get nervous. They assured the families at home that all of our schools are good. We should focus on individual students. The Committee was impressed with all the work being done.

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Gifts: Elem. Schools

On a motion by Mr. McCarthy, seconded by Mrs. Bragg, the Committee accepted a gift of 600 dictionaries donated to the elementary schools by the Elks Lodge. The ayes have it.

Gifts Epi-pens

On a motion by Mr. Puleo, seconded by Mrs. Mahoney, the Committee accepted a gift of $2,218.15 donated by the Rural Masonic Lodge for the purchase of epi- pens. The ayes have it.

Gifts Sterling Middle

On a motion by Mr. McCarthy, seconded by Mr. Mariano, the Committee accepted a gift of 12 computers and $5,000 donated from Arbella Insurance to Sterling Middle School for the installation of new auditorium curtain. The ayes have it.

Gifts Sterling Middle

On a motion by Mr. Mariano, seconded by Mr. McCarthy, the Committee accepted a gift of $1,000 from Fallon Ambulance to Sterling Middle School. The ayes have it.

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Question #1

Mr. Nick Puleo spoke to Question 1 which is on the ballot. He urged everyone to vote “No.” This question is asking to repeal the Massachusetts Income Tax. If the Income Tax is repealed he said, it will cause great harm to cities and towns throughout the state. Mr. Puleo made a motion, seconded by Mrs. Bragg, that the Quincy School Committee adopt a resolution to oppose Question #1. On a roll call vote, the motion passed 5-1-1. MR. McCARTHY voted NO and Mrs. Dwyer was absent.

Election Day

A this time, Mrs. Bragg brought up the issue of closing the schools on election day. She called a Policy Subcommittee meeting for Wednesday, November 5 at 3:30 p.m. in the Superintendent’s Conference Room to come up with a resolution so that no one will lose any pay. They will also discuss the Quill Program.

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Additional Business

Mr. McCarthy inquired about the Carpentry Shop move to Broad Meadows. Mr. Keith Segalla answered that work there is scheduled with two carpentry instructors – while one is in the classroom, the other is in the shop or in the field. With regard to Robotics, we are very close to finding a home.

Mr. McCarthy passed out copies of a memo from Mr. Timmins, City Solicitor, regarding Faxon Field and the GIC. Attached were copies of deeds to Faxon Field and an act enacted in 1964. He pointed out Chapter 42, Section 2 where it states that both the City Council and School Committee have to vote on the land. Mr. McCarthy made a motion to put this into the RULES, POST AUDIT & OVERSIGHT Subcommittee. Mrs. Mahoney seconded the motion. The ayes have it. He wants to look at the legality and the proper procedures to take a vote with the City Council.

Mr. McCarthy recognized Siobhan Carnell, a soccer player at North Quincy High School She received “Athlete of the Week” in the Ledger.

Mrs. Bragg noted a letter the Committee received from District Attorney Keating on cyber bullying and media violence. The Committee is thankful for all his help.

Mr. McCarthy informed the Committee that there will be a presentation by Gale Associates on the track design at Faxon Field on November 3 at Quincy High School at 7:00 p.m.

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Mrs. Bragg removed the garden at Snug Harbor, Maintenance/Custodial training schedule, Lincoln Hancock pool reserve, enrollment at North Quincy High off the School Committee listing of projects/reports to be completed.

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Policy Subcommittee Report by Mrs. Bragg

The Policy Subcommittee met on Wednesday, October 8, and reviewed the polices for Section 10.2, Equal Educational Opportunities, 10.5.4 Admission Residency and Parental Responsibility, 10.5.7 Homeless Students, 10.6 High School and Middle School Attendance and Tardiness Policy, and 10.6.1 Student Dismissal Precautions. She reviewed the changes made on these policies. She will bring them back at a later date for final approval.

On a motion by Mrs. Bragg, seconded by Mr. McCarthy, the Committee approved the changes to the Homeless Policy 10.5.7. The ayes have it.

On a motion by Mrs. Bragg, seconded by Mr. McCarthy, the Committee approved the Policy Subcommittee minutes for October 8, 2008. The ayes have it.

Middle School SIPs Approved

On October 20, the Policy Subcommittee met to review the School Improvement Plans for all middle schools. On a motion by Mrs. Bragg, seconded by Mr. McCarthy, the Committee approved all five middle school school improvement plans. The ayes have it.

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SPED Subcommittee Report by Mrs. Mahoney

Mrs. Mahoney held a Special Education Subcommittee meeting on Wednesday, October 22 at Broad Meadows Middle School. They met with interested parents to receive an update on new programs, they discussed INSPIRE, they received an overview from Lois Constantino regarding SPED transpiration, they received a report from Carol Dumas on the Mayor’s Drug Task Force. Their next meeting is scheduled for January 28, 2009 where they will discuss in more depth the Coordinated Program Review results for Special Education. On a motion by Mrs. Mahoney, seconded by Mr. Puleo, the Committee approved the Special Ed Sub- Committee minutes. The ayes have it.

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Mr. Puleo asked that the next meeting the subcommittee discuss politically – related bumper stickers on transport vehicles or contractor vehicles.

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The Committee noted the following appointment:

Occup. Therapist: Tara MacLeod

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On a motion by Mr. McCarthy, seconded by Mrs. Bragg, the Committee adjourned for the evening at 8:55 p.m. for the evening. There was no Executive Session. On a roll call vote, the motion passed 5-0. Mrs. Dwyer was absent.