Feb. 25, 2015 Health/Safety Sub Meeting


Quincy School Committee
Health, Transportation, and Safety Subcommittee
Wednesday, February 25, 2015, 5:00 pm
Coddington Building
Mr. Noel DiBona, Chair

  1. Farm to School Collaboration - Mrs. Liz Manning, Planning; Mrs. Melissa Pond, Planning

  2. A Matter of the Heart/CPR Initiative - Mrs. Rita Bailey

  3. Alliance for a Healthier Generation Update - Mrs. Rita Bailey

  4. Elementary School Learn to Swim & Middle School Competitive Swimming Skills Programs Update - Dr. DeCristofaro

  5. Adjournment/Thank You!


Quincy School Committee
Health, Transportation & Safety Subcommittee Meeting
Wednesday, February 25, 2015

A meeting of the Health, Transportation & Safety Subcommittee was held on Wednesday, February 25, 2015 at 5:00 pm at the Coddington Building. Present were Mr. Paul Bregoli, Mrs. Kathryn Hubley, Ms. Barbara Isola, Mr. David McCarthy, and Mr. Noel DiBona, Chair. Also attending were Superintendent DeCristofaro, Mrs. Rita Bailey, Mrs. Joanne Morrissey, Mrs. Maura Papile; Mr. Sean Glennon, Ms. Susan Karim, and Mrs. Elizabeth Manning from Planning & Community Development; and Ms. Laura Owens, Clerk.

Mr. DiBona called the meeting to order at 5:00 pm and introduced Community Development Director Sean Glennon, who outlined the ongoing collaboration with QPS on Farm to School, a movement to source more foods locally and provide complementary educational activities. The Farm to School Planning Team is applying for Implementation grant in April, focused on three schools (Lincoln Hancock, Sterling, and Quincy High School) based on USDA data about income, access to supermarkets, and transportation.

Mrs. Morrissey has completed the Farm to School Readiness Assessment and Quincy Public Schools is at the early stages. Potential opportunities include expanded vendor selection through aggregate purchasing cooperatives and crafting a curriculum that reflects Quincy’s unique needs, strengthening connections to the Alliance for a Healthier Generation and Next Generation Science Standards. Mrs. Manning talked about community outreach conducted to date. There are many local partners who are interested in becoming involved, social media promotional possibilities, and creating tie-ins to local events. There will also be a family event to promote awareness later in the spring. In the short term, the Planning team is hoping the School Committee will introduce a resolution in support of Farm to School that will be used to support the grant application.

Mr. McCarthy said this is a unique opportunity for collaboration across departments, and fully supports this effort. Mr. DiBona asked about other cities and towns with successful Farm to School programs. Ms. Karim said Somerville and Lowell are local cities and we will learn from their best practices.

Mr. DiBona asked about using the local produce in our cafeterias. Mrs. Morrissey said that we are required to source food from accredited sources, but that there is a precedent with Sterling using their home-grown produce. On a larger scale, the Department of Public Health would be involved. Mr. DiBona said that this sounds like a great program.

Mrs. Hubley suggested that relevant Science Fair projects could be included in the Farm to School event, both high schools and all middle schools have Science Fairs between February and April.

Mrs. Bailey reviewed the CPR Initiative that was recently completed. The Grade 8 CPR training took place in all schools on February 4-6, over 600 students were trained in the Friends and Family CPR introductory program. QPS staff supplemented Fallon Ambulance Services staff due to the compressed schedule. On Saturday, February 8, 102 students and parents received a full CPR/AED training at Central Middle School, provided free of charge by Fallon Ambulance Services. Athletics coaches have been given two opportunities to become certified, including this Saturday, February 28.

Mr. Bregoli asked for details about the in-school training. Mrs. Bailey said this was a basic 45-minute overview, what to do in an emergency, basic compressions, and contacting 911. Mr. Bregoli asked if it has become mandatory for athletics coaches to be CPR trained, but this hasn’t become law yet. Mrs. Hubley asked how often CPR certification must be renewed; every two years.

Mrs. Hubley asked that we contact NQHS alum Tess McGough to let her know that we’ve implemented this program. Ms. Isola said this is a wonderful beginning and appreciates all the work and coordination.

Mrs. Bailey then reviewed the work done to date with the Alliance for a Healthier Generation. Through the school assessment process, the Wellness Team will determine new system-wide goals for 2015-2016. There are many great initiatives throughout the system, sharing of ideas and activities between schools. An upcoming meeting will include school-based Health educators and a discussion about best practices. Dr. DeCristofaro said in the third year of this initiative, the Wellness teams are institutionalized and the Wellness teams are up and running when the school year begins.

Mr. DiBona asked about activities during the school day. Most schools have incorporated some type of fitness break during the day as needed. Many schools have staff activities such as after-school yoga, fitness challenges, and recipe sharing.

Dr. DeCristofaro updated on the Middle School Competitive Swimming program, 29 students attended during the February vacation week. The goal for next year is to create a citywide Middle School Swim Team. For the Elementary school Learn to Swim program on early release Tuesdays, the third session is scheduled to begin next week. Lincoln Hancock, Clifford Marshall, Wollaston, Snug Harbor have already participated this year; Atherton Hough and Parker will join the spring session.

Mr. McCarthy made a motion to adjourn the Health, Transportation, and Safety Subcommittee meeting at 5:45 pm. Mr. Bregoli seconded the motion and on a voice vote, the ayes have it.