Feb. 6, 2019 School Committee Meeting


Regular Meeting of the Quincy School Committee
Wednesday, February 6, 2019, 6:30 pm
Coddington Building

I. Approval of Minutes: Regular Meeting Minutes for January 23, 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. Partnership Recognition: National Association of Government Employees (NAGE)

C. Parent Academy, February 12: Preparing Students for Next Generation MCAS

D. Kindergarten Registration, Tuesday, March 5

E. Pre-Kindergarten Screenings, March 5 & 19

F. Collaborative Homework Initiative

G. Thomas Crane Public Library Initiative

H. Grade 5 Student Council Leadership Summit

I. FY2019 Grant Booklet

IV. Old Business:

A. 2019-2020 School Committee Meeting Calendar (Discussion) - Mr. Bregoli

B. 2019-2020 School Year Calendar (Discussion) - Mr. Bregoli

Both items will be eligible for vote at March 6, 2019 Meeting.

V. New Business:

A. Health Services Update - Ms. Bailey

B. QPS Mentor Program - Ms. Roy, Mr. Hennessy

C. Out of State Travel (One Day): March 2, 2019: Quincy High School to Science Bowl at University of Connecticut in Storrs, Connecticut.

VI. Additional Business:

VII. Communications:

A. Upcoming School Committee Meetings: March 6, 2019 and March 20, 2019 at 6:30 pm at the Coddington Building.

B. Upcoming Subcommittee Meetings: February 27, 2019: Teaching & Learning Subcommittee at 6:00 pm; March 13, 2019: Athletics & Wellness at 6:00 pm and Facilities, Transportation & Security at 6:30 pm; March 27, 2019: Joint Teaching & Learning/Special Education Subcommittee at 6:00 pm. All Subcommittee Meetings are at the Coddington Building.

VIII. Reports of Subcommittees:

A. Policy: Mr. Bregoli to report on the January 28, 2019 meeting.

B. Budget & Finance: Mrs. Hubley to report on the January 28, 2019 meeting.

C. Teaching & Learning: Mrs. Lebo to report on the January 28, 2019 meeting.

IX. Executive Session: None

X. Adjournment:  

Subcommittees of the Quincy School Committee

Athletics & Wellness

  1. Before School Exercise Programs Referred at the September 10, 2014 Special Organizational Meeting. Monitoring the implementation of these programs across QPS.

  2. Substance Use Education & Prevention Referred at the September 6, 2017 Special Organizational Meeting. Monitoring of the system-wide initiatives for students and families and the collaboration with outside agencies.

  3. Wellness Programs Referred at the September 6, 2017 Special Organizational Meeting. Monitoring of the school-based and system-wide initiatives related to student and staff wellness.

  4. Evaluation of Coaches Referred at the September 6, 2017 Special Organizational Meeting. Requesting further discussion of process of formal review of coaches by the Athletic Directors.

  5. Bishop Field Update Referred at the May 2, 2018 School Committee meeting and amended at the May 16, 2018 School Committee meeting; request for information on planned upgrades and a regular Park Board Meeting update (Mr. Bregoli, School Committee representative to the Park Board).

  6. Potential MIAA Athletic League Change for NQHS Referred at the September 10, 2018 Special Organizational Meeting for further discussion.

  7. Share Tables Referred at the October 24, 2018 for discussion of amending Wellness Policy 1.7 to include guidelines. (Also referred to Policy Subcommittee.)

  8. Health Curriculum Referred at the October 24, 2018 for review and discussion.

Budget & Finance

Facilities, Security, and Transportation

  1. School Playgrounds Referred at the September 14, 2016 Special Organizational Meeting. Requesting an update from the Park Department on recent equipment and safety fiber upgrades and projects in planning.

  2. New Middle School project Referred at the September 14, 2016 Special Organizational Meeting. Schedule updates to be provided as the planning phase moves into construction.

  3. Water Testing Results & Repair Referred at the December 7, 2016 School Committee meeting to monitor the schedule for fixture repair or replacement.

  4. Solar Panels on School Buildings Referred at the September 10, 2018 Special Organizational Meeting for update on Solar City, energy consumption, and related cost savings.

  5. QPS Vehicle Storage Facility Relocation Referred at the September 10, 2018 Special Organizational Meeting as a requested update.

  6. ALICE Protocol Referred at the September 10, 2018 Special Organizational Meeting for further review and discussion.

  7. Direct Emergency Contact from School Offices to Quincy Police Department (Panic Button) Referred at the September 10, 2018 Special Organizational Meeting for review and discussion.

  8. School Improvement Plan Facilities Needs Referred at the November 14, 2018 School Committee meeting for further review towards progress of addressing these issues.


  1. Middle School Grading System Referred at the December 10, 2014 School Committee meeting for review and discussion.

  2. School Committee Policy Book Referred at the January 13, 2016 School Committee meeting for review and updating as needed.

  3. NQHS Mascot Referred at the November 9, 2016 School Committee meeting.

  4. Extended School Day/Recess Scheduling Referred at the December 6, 2017 School Committee Meeting.

  5. School Year Calendar 2020-21: Referred at the September 10, 2018 Special Organizational Meeting for review of starting school before Labor Day, September 7, 2020.

  6. Veterans Memorial Stadium: Referred at the October 10, 2018 School Committee meeting by Mayor Koch; consideration of a resolution and revision to the associated School Committee Policy 11.6 Community Use of School Facilities.

  7. Potential Revision of Wellness Policy 1.7 to Incorporate “Share Tables” Referred at the October 24, 2018 School Committee meeting for consideration. (Also referred to Athletics & Wellness Subcommittee.)

  8. School Committee Policy 9.11.1 Homework Referred at the December 12, 2018 School Committee Meeting for review.

  9. School Committee Policy 11.8 Public Solicitations in Schools Referred at the December 12, 2018 School Committee Meeting for review.

  10. 2019-20 School Year Calendar Referred at the December 12, 2018 School Committee Meeting for review.

  11. 2019-20 School Committee Meeting Calendar Referred at the December 12, 2018 School Committee Meeting for review.

Rules, Post Audit & Oversight

Special Education

  1. High School Inclusion Classes Referred at the September 10, 2018 Special Organizational Meeting for a requested update of the status for the 2018-2019 school year.

Teaching and Learning

  1. Advanced Program Pathways Referred at the May 20, 2015 School Committee Meeting to review opportunities to challenge above-level students at all grades.

  2. Enrollment Data/Class Size: Referred at the October 14, 2015 School Committee meeting for further review and discussion.

  3. Superintendent Evaluation Referred at the September 7, 2016 School Committee meeting for preparation and procedure review.

  4. High School Mid-Term Examinations Referred at the June 14, 2017 School Committee meeting for further review and discussion.

  5. NQHS Mascot Referred at the May 2, 2018 School Committee meeting for review and discussion.

  6. Graduation Follow Up Referred at the September 10, 2018 Special School Committee meeting.

  7. District Goal for Science Referred at the October 10, 2018 School Committee meeting for further discussion.

  8. MCAS Growth Percentile Referred at the October 10, 2018 School Committee meeting for further discussion.

  9. School Improvement Plan Goal Development Referred at the November 14, 2018 School Committee meeting for further discussion.

  10. Foreign Language Program Referred at the January 9, 2019 School Committee meeting for review.


New Middle School Building Committee

School District Maps

Created at the September 10, 2014 Special School Committee meeting to review issues related to school district maps.


Quincy, Massachusetts – February 6, 2019
Regular Meeting of the Quincy School Committee  

Regular Meeting

A regular meeting of the Quincy School Committee was held on Wednesday, February 6, 2019 at the Coddington Building at 6:30 p.m. Superintendent DeCristofaro called the roll and present were School Committee Chair Mayor Thomas Koch, Mr. Anthony Andronico, Mr. Paul Bregoli, Mr. James DeAmicis, Mr. Douglas Gutro, Mrs. Kathryn Hubley, and Vice Chair Mrs. Emily Lebo.

Vice-Chair Presiding

Also present were: Dr. Richard DeCristofaro, Secretary; Ms. Laura Owens, Clerk; Ms. Rita Bailey, Ms. Deborah Cerone, Mr. Michael Draicchio, Dr. Beth Hallett, Mr. James Hennessy, Ms. Janet Loftus, Mr. James Mullaney, Deputy Superintendent Kevin Mulvey, Ms. Maura Papile, Ms. Erin Perkins, Ms. Madeline Roy, Mr. Keith Segalla, Ms. Kathleen Torraco; Quincy Education Association President Allison Cox; and Citywide Parent Council Co-President Scott Alessandro.

There was a moment of silence for men and women serving in the armed forces at home and overseas.


Regular Meeting Minutes Approved 1.23.2019

Mrs. Hubley made a motion, seconded by Mr. DeAmicis to approve the Regular Meeting minutes for January 23, 2019 as presented. On a voice vote, the ayes have it.


Open Forum

Citywide Parent Council Co-President Scott Alessandro requested consideration for creating an administrative director position to support data analysis for the 2019-2020 budget.

Mr. John Rodophele spoke about the Massachusetts School Building Authority Statement of Interest process, noting that there are three schools that are over 100 years old: Montclair, Parker, and Wollaston. Mr. Rodophele also requested School Committee consider meeting on a different day of the week so as not to conflict with Planning Board Meetings.


Superintendent's Report

Dr. DeCristofaro opened the Superintendent’s Report with the recognition of the National Association of Government Employees (NAGE), Special Assistant to the President Kevin Doyle and Mary Sheehan, President of the NAGE Charitable Trust for their support of the Mentoring Program, in addition to support of the schools through internships, backpack and supply donations and sponsoring Flag Day.

Superintendent DeCristofaro thanked City Council for supporting the submission of the MSBA Statements of Interest for Squantum and Broad Meadows in votes taken at the February 4, 2019 meeting.

South~West Middle School Opening Day will be Monday, June 3. A Transition team with representatives from Quincy Public Schools and the City of Quincy Public Buildings and Information Technology Departments are planning the move.

The Grade 5 Student Council Leadership Summit was held on February 14, 65 Grade 5 students from all schools participated in leadership activities led by the class officers from Quincy and North Quincy High Schools and staff from the South Shore YMCA. Another important partnership is between Quincy Public Schools and the Thomas Crane Public Library, who hosts many events for elementary and middle school students.

Dr. DeCristofaro then presented the Inspire Quincy video, featuring the middle school Pep Band at the North Quincy vs. Quincy Highh School Girls Basketball game, the Girls Quincy-North Quincy Ice Hockey team, middle school Wrestling, and A Matter of Heart CPR & AED training.

Kindergarten Registration will begin on March 5 and new this year, parents will complete a Pre-Registration form online and registration appointments will be scheduled at the school sites and Central Registration.

Mrs. Lebo presented an update on the Homework Initiative, a collaboration with Citywide Parent Council, Quincy Education Association, and Quincy Parent Advisory Council to Special Education as the current Policy has not been updated in many years. The group is working on developing a survey for students, parents, and staff and are hoping to have draft surveys to review with School Committee in March.

Director of Business James Mullaney presented the FY2019 Grant Booklet, details of $6 million funds, $5.3 in entitlement grants for Title I, Title II, Title III, and IDEA Special Education. Mr. Gutro asked about annual vs. time limited grants. Mr. Mullaney said the majority are annual grants. In the past, grants have made up as much as 10% of the budget but it is currently 5%. Mr. Gutro asked about time-limited grant, Mr. Mullaney said most are focused on technology, so one time purchases. Mr. Mullaney said the Essential School Services grant funded two nurse positions and that will no longer be funded for FY2020 and will need to be absorbed in the Quincy Public Schools budget.

Mrs. Lebo thanked all of the grant administrators, there is a lot of work involved with sustaining these. Special thanks to Mr. Segalla for his success with the competitive grants.


Old Business

2019-20 School Committee Meeting & School Year Calendars (Discussion)

Mr. Bregoli noted that both the 2019-2020 School Committee Meeting and the 2019-2020 School Year Calendar are on the agenda for discussion. As there was no discussion, Mr. Bregoli noted that both are eligible for vote at the March 6 School Committee meeting


New Business

Health Services Program Update

Coordinator of Health Services Rita Bailey and School Nurses Deborah Cerone and Kathleen Torraco presented an update on the Health Services program, specifically the role of school nurses. School nursing is a specialized practice and advances the well-being, academic success, and the life-long achievement of students. Removing health-related barriers to learning and promoting optimal level of wellness is the goal of the nurses at all Quincy Public Schools sites. There are 23 full-time registered nurses, each are licensed by the Board of Registered Nurses and the Department of Elementary & Secondary Education and are supported by four Health paraprofessionals.

School nurses provide direct care to students and staff, health education, management of chronic illnesses, daily medication administration, and develop individualized health care plans for students with specialized health needs, such as food allergies and diabetes. School nurses maintain adherence to mandated school health requirements such as immunization and physical examinations; provide state-mandated screenings for vision, hearing, scoliosis, and height/weight/BMI. School nurses are responsible for communicable disease control, including exclusion and treatment; notification; education; and compliance.

Through the SNAP program, school nurses maintain individual computerized student records including screenings, immunizations, and medical history. All school nurses have opportunities for mentorship from veteran school nurse staff member Donna Dean. School nurses provide health education for staff, students, and parents, including nutrition, CPR/AED, classroom presentations.

In 2017-2018, school nurses documented 83,365 student encounters, including 2,510 with ongoing healthcare needs and 11,136 documented nursing communications to parents and guardians. School nurses are leaders on the school-based Wellness teams, helping with setting goals, promoting health and wellness activities, and grant-writing to support health & wellness initiatives. A Matter of Heart is now in the fifth year, over 3,000 students have had introduction to CPR & AED; over 500 have been certified, along with parents and family members. School nurses collaborate with the Department of Public Health on Oral Health for Pre-Kindergarten through Grade 12, 554 students have been screened, received cleanings and sealings. The Big Smiles program serviced 516 students at their school site, including fillings, extractions, and sealants.

Mayor Koch left the meeting at 7:30 pm.

Mrs. Hubley thanked the presenters, and asked about a Vision program that was previously highlighted. Ms. Bailey said that service has been discontinued, but the Lions Club supports families who need financial assistance with vision needs.

Mr. Gutro referred the report to Athletics & Wellness Subcommittee for further discussion. Mr. Gutro asked about custodial staff membership on the Wellness Teams, looking for indoor air quality issue to be addressed in this team. Dr. DeCristofaro said that this is an item to be followed up on. Mr. Gutro asked about the SNAP data and what types of reports are available. Ms. Bailey said the data tracks types and details of student encounters. 95% of Massachusetts school districts are using the program. Mr. Gutro asked about the expiring grant for school nurses. Dr. DeCristofaro said there are currently 23 school nurses, 2 school-based nurses are paid from this grant.

Mr. Bregoli asked about monitoring the immunization compliance. Ms. Bailey said that the school nurses do an amazing job monitoring this both for new and continuing students. A student who is partway through a sequence and may be catching up is admitted to school as long as a documented appointment is confirmed. Ms. Bailey clarified that most immunizations are required during elementary school years, with one due in Grade 7. Religious and medical exemptions must be documented annually.

Mrs. Hubley asked if we still have a partnership with Manet Healthcare, Ms. Bailey said they are very responsive to assist with immunizations.

Mrs. Lebo asked about head lice, Ms. Bailey clarified that this is a nuisance, not a public health issue. Students with an active case will be sent home; those with nits are not excluded from school, but the parent will be notified and supported during the treatment process.


New Business

Mentor Program Update

Senior Curriculum Director Madeline Roy and Wollaston Elementary School James Hennessy presented an update on the Quincy Public Schools Mentor Program. New professional staff members are introduced to the Mentoring Program at the annual New Professional Staff Orientation in late August and all are assigned a mentor at their school site in the first week of school. Under the Education Reform Act, professional staff are required to participate in mentoring programs in order to achieve Professional licensure status. The goals of the mentoring program are to help new teachers improve practice, learn professional responsibilities, and ultimately positively affect student learning. The mentor program also allows veteran teachers to reflect and improve upon their practice, while coaching a new staff member. Ultimately, the mentor program elevates the teaching profession and foster a collaborative learning community for all educators. These benefits can lead to a much higher rate of staff retention.

The teams of proteges and mentors meets five times each year; team members keep journals reflecting the additional time spent on collaboration and coaching. The Mentor Planning Team consists of educators, principals, assistant principals, administrators, and retired educators and meets periodically throughout the year to review agendas and feedback, discuss future topics and break out sessions, and plan meeting agendas. The Mentor Team meetings feature guest speakers and videos, sharing of best practices and resources, opportunities to collect with principals and directors and colleagues, small group collaboration, and technology training and modeling. Topics for 2018-2019 included Essentials for Success, Building Relationships, Supporting Students with Disabilities, Mindfulness for Educators, and Reflections on Practice and Growth.

In 2018-2019, over 98 educators are participating in the Mentor Program. As a team, reflection is concrete through Exit Tickets for both mentors and proteges, plus a year-end survey and this allows evolution. The annual DESE Induction & Mentoring Report encourages district reflection on induction and mentoring practices and provides opportunities for sharing innovations.

Mr. DeAmicis thanked the presenters, a phenomenal program that is so important for beginning professionals.

Mrs. Hubley asked for clarification that this is for first-year teachers only. Mr. Hennessy said that teachers need to continue Professional Development for 50 hours beyond this first year. In many cases, the mentor-protegee relationships continue informally.

Mr. Andronico asked about the planning for a new school year. Mr. Hennessy said that before the end of the school year, there is an analysis of the exit tickets for all five meetings plus the end of year survey. The program also evolves depending on the types of new educators, more elementary or English Learner or Special Education teachers will shift the focus of the mentoring.

Mr. Gutro said that this program is impressive, so very individualized, many fields don’t have this type of support. Mr. Gutro asked how much of this is is defined by DESE as opposed to home grown, is there collaboration with other towns. Mr. Hennessy said that Quincy is ahead of the curve and a model for other programs.

Mrs. Lebo said that Quincy had a mentor program before it was a state licensure requirement, it has certainly grown over the years.


Additional Business

Mrs. Lebo announced that a School Committee Professional Development event conducted by the Massachusetts Association of School Committee field representative will be scheduled on a Wednesday in the next two months.



Upcoming meetings include School Committee Meetings on March 6 and March 20, 2019 at 6:30 pm at the Coddington Building. Upcoming Subcommittee meetings include Teaching & Learning on February 27, 2019 at 6:00 pm and and a joint Teaching & Learning/Special Education Subcommittee meeting on March 27, 2019; Athletics & Wellness on March 13, 2019 at 6:00 pm, followed by Facilities, Security & Transportation at 6:30 pm.


Reports of Subcommittees

Mrs. Lebo noted that School Committee and Subcommittee meeting minutes are posted online at www.quincypublicschools.com/schoolcomm/2018-2019.

Mr. Bregoli reported on the Policy Subcommittee Meeting held on January 28, 2019. Draft calendars for the 2019-2020 School Year and School Committee Meetings were reviewed and moved to School Committee for discussion.

Mrs. Hubley reported on the Quarterly Budget & Finance Subcommittee Meeting held on January 28, 2019. Director of Business James Mullaney presented an update on the 2nd Quarter of FY2019 for salaries and expenses.

Mrs. Lebo reported on the Teaching & Learning Subcommittee Meeting held on January 28, 2019. Presentations on the preparation for Next Generation assessments at the high schools, the development of common writing assessments, the keyboarding initiative were shared, along with a discussion around School Improvement Plan process.

As there were no corrections, the meeting minutes from the January 28, 2019 Policy, Budget & Finance, and Teaching & Learning Subcommittee meetings were approved as presented.


Executive Session

There was no Executive Session.



Mr. DeAmicis made a motion to adjourn for the evening at 8:35 p.m.