April 10, 2024 School Committee Meeting

April 10, 2024 School Committee Meeting
Posted on 04/08/2024
QPS logo


Regular Meeting of the Quincy School Committee

Wednesday, April 10, 2024, 6:30 pm
Coddington Building, School Committee Room

I. Call to Order: Roll Call, Pledge of Allegiance, In Memoriam

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. Interested parties may also submit written statements to: [email protected].

III. Superintendent’s Report

A. Student Recognitions: High School Science Fair Winners

B. All-Star Program Writing & Art Contest

C. IT Girls Challenge

D. Autism Acceptance Month

E. Student Representatives to School Committee

F. QPS Music Department Update

G. Recent & Upcoming Quincy Public Schools Events

  • Atlantic Fitness Center Dedication

  • High School Spring Concerts:

    • Combined Chorus, April 9

    • Combined Band, April 11

    • Spring Recital, April 24

  • Central Middle School World Language Fashion Show, April 26

  • South~West Middle School STEM Fair, April 30

  • North Quincy High School Cultural Fair, May 2

  • CVTE Women in the Trades Summit, May 3

  • Cleaner Greener, May 4

  • Citywide Multicultural Festival, May 11

  • South~West Middle School Drama Presents: Encanto, May 10 & 11

IV. Old Business:

A. 2024-2025 School Year Calendar (ROLL CALL VOTE) - Mr. Gutro

B. Policy Book Section 7.5.2 School-Based Public Access Defibrillation Program (recommending removal) - Mr. Gutro

C. Policy Book Section 7.5.3 CPR Training/Abdominal Thrusts - Mr. Gutro

D. Policy Book Section 10.11 Student Health Services & Requirements - Mr. Gutro

E. Policy Book Section 10.11.1 Physical Examination of Students - Mr. Gutro

F. Policy Book Section 10.11.2 Immunization of Students (no changes) - Mr. Gutro

G. Policy Book Section 10.11.3 Communicable Diseases (no changes) - Mr. Gutro

H. Policy Book Section 10.11.4 Administering Medication to Students - Mr. Gutro
Items B-H are on the agenda for discussion and are eligible for vote at May 8 meeting.

V. New Business:

A. Dr. Rick DeCristofaro Learning Center Update - Dr. Perkins, Ms. Graham

B. Chapter 70 Funding - Mr. Mullaney

C. School Committee Subcommittee Operations - Mrs. Lebo

D. Superintendent’s Goals 2023-2024 (VOICE VOTE) - Mrs. Lebo

E. School Choice Participation (ROLL CALL VOTE)

Superintendent Mulvey Superintendent Mulvey recommends that the Quincy School Committee withdraw from enrolling non-resident students in the Quincy Public Schools for the 2024-2025 academic year for the following reasons:

  • The level of current and projected enrollments at all elementary, middle, and high schools.

  • Adherence to the Quincy School Committee Policy on class sizes.

VI. Consent Agenda (ROLL CALL VOTE)

A. Regular Meeting Minutes: March 20, 2024

B. Grant: Massachusetts Skills Capital $188,527 for QHS Automotive Technology

VII. Additional Business:

VIII. Communications:

A. Upcoming School Committee Meetings: Regular Meetings on May 8 & 22, 2024; and June 12, 2024 at 6:30 pm at the Coddington Building.

B. Upcoming Subcommittee Meetings (at the Coddington Building): April 24, 2024: Quarterly Budget & Finance at 6:00 pm; Teaching & Learning at 6:15 pm; Policy at 7:00 pm

IX. Reports of Subcommittees:

A. Athletics & Wellness: March 20, 2024 meeting - Mr. Bregoli

B. Teaching & Learning: March 27, 2024 meeting - Mrs. Lebo

C. Policy: - Mr. Gutro

1. March 27, 2024 meeting

2. Remove Items #14 Section 2.5.7 School Committee-Staff Communication and #16 2024-2025 School Year Calendar from the items in Policy Subcommittee.

X. Executive Session: None

XI. Adjournment:


Quincy, MASSACHUSETTS – April 10, 2024

Regular Meeting of the Quincy School Committee

Regular Meeting

Chairman Presiding

A meeting of the Quincy School Committee was held on Wednesday, April 10, 2024 at 6:30 p.m. in the School Committee Room at the Coddington Building. Superintendent Kevin Mulvey called the roll and present were Mayor Thomas P. Koch, School Committee Chair and School Committee Members Mr. Paul Bregoli, Mr. Doug Gutro, Mrs. Kathryn Hubley, Mrs. Emily Lebo, and Mrs. Courtney Perdios.

Also present were: Superintendent Kevin Mulvey, Assistant Superintendent Dr. Erin Perkins, Ms. Claire Boudreau, Ms. Kerri Connolly, Ms. Kim Connolly, Mr. Michael Draicchio, Mr. Daniel Gilbert, Ms. Julie Graham, Ms. Andrea Huwar, Ms. Jennifer Leary, Mr. Michael Marani, Mr. James Mullaney, Ms. Meaghann Murray, Ms. Maura Papile, Mr. Keith Segalla, Mr. Edward Smith, Mr. Lawrence Taglieri; NQHS Student Representative Enhea Panariti; former School Committee member Frank Santoro; and Ms. Laura Owens, Clerk.

School Committee Vice Chair Mrs. Tina Cahill was absent.

School Committee observed a moment of silence for the following Quincy Public Schools employees and retirees who passed away recently: Phil Burke, Custodian at Quincy High School for last two years; Gay Carbonneau, Music Teacher at Snug Harbor, Atherton, Parker, Point and Broad Meadows for 21 years; Margaret “Peggy” Walker, English teacher at North Quincy High School for 27 years.

Mayor Koch 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.


Open Forum

Mr. Frank Santoro, Ms. Kate Campbell, Ms. Kavitra Mishra, Ms. Truc Lai, and Ms. Susan Chinsen, spoke in support of adding Lunar New Year to the QPS School Year Calendar. A video submitted by the Citywide EDI Subcommittee in favor of adding Lunar New Year to the school year calendar was played.

Ms. Owens read letters in support of adding Lunar New Year to the QPS School Year Calendar from City Councillor at Large Nina Liang; Grace Young-Jae, Susan Chinsen & Samson Lee, Mai Du, Truc Lai, Thuy Leung; Jill Sabin; Vicki Schow; Samson Lee; Joanna Chow; Amy Sorensen-Alawad; Ben Hires; Brian Henderson; Mary Jo Baryza; Grace Young-Jae; Kevin Spencer; Citywide EDI Subcommittee, Heather McDuffus and Grace Young-Jae, Co-Chairs, also signed by Shivpreet Singh, Scott Alessandro, Jenni Torres, Ginger McGill, Joanna Chow, Dawn Culbertson, Kristen Kehoe, Claudia Ortiz, Donna Yang, Lily Chan, and Carlos Rodarte.


Superintendent’s Report

Superintendent Mulvey opened his report by introducing Science Department Chairs Claire Boudreau from North Quincy High School and Meghann Murray from Quincy High School. Ms. Boudreau and Ms. Murray introduced the STEM Fair winners from each high school: Elijah Epter, 1st place NQHS; Maggie Chen, 2nd place, NQHS; Elmeiria Cheung, 3rd place, NQHS; Nathan Nguyen, 1st place, QHS; Maya Tittel, 2nd place, QHS; Sage Gillespie, 3rd place, QHS. The students each shared an overview of their projects with School Committee and School Committee thanked the presenters, praising their innovation and perseverance.

After a brief recess, Superintendent Mulvey continued his report by announcing that the Celtics All-Star Program recently competed the annual art and writing contest. Congratulations to Central Middle School student Angel Rathore for her first place writing award. Forty-nine Quincy Public Schools students were also recognized for their art and writing entries.

Congratulations to North Quincy High School Grade 11 students Hannah Moriarty, Alexia Laci, Melanie Wijaya, and Xuan Mai Ippolito for winning the CGI I.T. Girl Challenge. In this competition, the students competed against other local high school teams to innovate, design, and pitch an app of their own. They developed Falcon Focus, an app for helping high school students improve their concentration and mindfulness, which was awarded first place and a $20,000 scholarship. This is the 2nd year in a row that NQHS students have won this national competition.

Superintendent Mulvey recognized April as Autism Acceptance Month, which is not just about awareness; it is about understanding, inclusion, and embracing differences.

Superintendent Mulvey reviewed that the goal of Student Representatives at School Committee meetings is to ensure student voices in the decision-making process of the School Committee. Student representatives may bring news and updates from their schools, raise issues of concern relative to an Agenda item, or offer their own views on matters before the School Committee. The Quincy School Committee recognizes Student Representatives from each of our two high schools at each Regular Meeting. Three (3) students from each high school are elected annually to serve no more than two (2) school year terms so as to give opportunity to multiple students to fill this role over the course of a school year. Students may alternate attendance through the school year as needed to meet their school and extracurricular schedules. Thank you to all of our Student Representatives who have served with distinction over the years. We look forward to continuing our work with future Student Representatives.

Mrs. Lebo requested convening the Student Advisory Council early in the new school year, Mrs. Perdios agreed.

Student musicians from both high schools competed in the recent Massachusetts Instrumental and Choral Conductors Association concert festival competitions. The QNQ Symphonic Band and the QNQ Wind Ensemble competed in the Concert Band competition with the Symphonic Band earning a silver medal and the Wind Ensemble earning a gold medal (first in program history). The Quincy High School Junior Choir also earned a bronze medal in the Choral Competition. Congratulations to all of the students and the Music Department staff under the direction of Michael DeMarco.

Superintendent Mulvey continued his report by reviewingthe recent dedication of the new Atlantic Middle School Fitness Center, thanks to the Boston Celtics and Boston Scientific for their grant to create this space for our students.

High School Spring Concerts are underway this week with the Combined Chorus performance last night at Quincy High School and the Combined Band concert on Thursday, April 11 at 6:00 pm at the Chrisom Auditorium at North Quincy High School. The High School Spring Recital will be held on Wednesday, April 24 at 6:00 pm at North Quincy High School.

The annual Central Middle School World Language Fashion Show will be held on Friday, April 26 with two shows at 6:00 pm and 7:30 pm. The Snug Harbor Community School PTO is hosting a Touch-a-Truck event on Saturday, April 27 from 10:00 am to 1:00 pm. The South~West Middle School STEM Fair will be held on Tuesday, April 30 at 5:00 pm.

North Quincy High School’s Cultural Fair will be held on Thursday, May 2. The annual CVTE Women in the Trades Summit will be held at Quincy High School on Friday, May 3 at 9:30 am in the President’s Café. Cleaner Greener will be held on Saturday, May 4 from 9:00 am to noon at school sites and parks throughout the city. Thanks to our students, families, staff, and principals for helping to beautify the city. The Citywide Multicultural Festival will return to Pageant Field on Saturday, May 11 from noon to 4:00 pm.

Superintendent Mulvey recognized the accomplishments of Assistant Superintendent Dr. Erin Perkins, who was recently awarded her Ph.D.


Old Business

Mr. Gutro reviewed that the draft 2024-2025 QPS School Year Calendar was approved at Policy Subcommittee on March 13, 2024 and is eligible for vote tonight.

2024-2025 QPS School Year Calendar (VOTE)

Mrs. Hubley made a motion to approve the 2024-2025 QPS School Year Calendar as presented. Mrs. Lebo seconded the motion.

On the motion, Mrs. Perdios said that the version proposed does not include Lunar New Year as an observed holiday. There is community support for adding this holiday from the letters and statements at Open Forum.

Mrs. Perdios made a motion to amend the 2024-2025 calendar to add Lunar New Year as an observed holiday on the Quincy Public Schools calendar.

On the motion, Mayor Koch said that he supports adding Lunar New Year as an observed holiday as well.

Mrs Lebo made a motion to end the discussion on the 2024-2025 QPS School Year Calendar, seconded by Mrs. Hubley. On a roll call vote, motion failed 3-3. (Mr. Bregoli, Mrs. Hubley, and Mrs. Lebo voted YES; Mr. Gutro, Mrs. Perdios, and Mayor Koch voted NO; Mrs. Cahill was absent.)

Mr. Gutro said that the current calendar structure provides equality for all cultural and religious holidays through excused absence. Mr. Gutro would like to discuss removing Good Friday from contracts during the next round of negotiations., so that it will become a scheduled school day.

Mrs. Lebo suggested that the calendar should reflect federal and state holidays only.

On a roll call vote, the ayes have it 4-2. Mr. Bregoli, Mr. Gutro, Mrs. Hubley, and Mrs. Lebo voted YES. Mayor Koch and Mrs. Perdios voted NO. Mrs. Cahill was absent.

Policies 7.5.2, 7.5.3, 10.11, 10.11.1, 10.11.2, 10.11.3, 10.11.4 (Discussion)

Mr. Gutro reviewed that at the March 27, 2024 Policy Subcommittee, there were revisions to a number of Health Policies proposed by Health Services Coordinator Andrea Huwar; all are for discussion tonight and eligible for vote on May 8: 7.5.2 School-Based Public Access Defibrillation Program (recommending removal); 7.5.3 CPR Training/Abdominal Thrusts; 10.11 Student Health Services & Requirements; 10.11.1 Physical Examination of Students; 10.11.2 Immunization of Students; 10.11.3 Communicable Diseases (no changes); 10.11.4 Administering Medication to Students

Mrs. Perdios asked if families can be notified through the annual health form that an ambulance may be called in case of emergency. Ms. Huwar said the determination is made by the school nurse and parents are also immediately notified and if they arrive to school before the ambulance, they can sign and refuse transport to the hospital.

Mayor Koch asked for clarification, the two Policies that don’t have revision will not appear on the next agenda for vote.


New Business

Dr. Rick DeCristofaro Learning Center Update

Assistant Superintendent Erin Perkins, Special Education Director Julie Graham, and Special Education Coordinator Jennifer Leary presented an update on the Dr. Rick DeCristofaro Learning Center. Dr. Perkins announced that Kerri Connolly is being appointed as the new Principal of the Dr. Rick DeCristofaro Learning Center. The Design Team consists of parents, staff, and administrators and has assisted in the planning and development of the school programming, including the selection of curriculum and behavioral management system. The team has also reviewed newsletters and parts of the application to ensure that the language is family-friendly and accessible.

For the Pre-Kindergarten program, the application to the Department of Elementary & Secondary Education for the name and location change has been submitted and we are awaiting final approval. For the Kindergarten through Grade 8 program, there are 20 categories of information to be submitted to DESE with a targeted submission date of April 19. Placement is being proposed to families as IEPs are coming up for renewal this spring.

Information was shared about the Unique Learning Systems curriculum and the Welle Behavioral Safety Management program. Partnerships for the school will include the South Shore Autism Center, Quincy After School Childcare onsite (with inclusion provided by students from other elementary schools), and the Field Placement office from Curry College for graduate students in ABA.

The Dr. Rick DeCristofaro Learning Center has a page on the website, featuring photos of the new building and the new logo for the Learning Center. This spring will be busy with professional development for the new building educators and paraprofessionals, tours for families, submitting the final application to DESE, and preparing for the Summer programming and the full Fall 2024 opening. Dr. Perkins also thanked Team Administrator Simone Buckley for all of her efforts in completing the application.

Mrs. Perdios asked about staffing for the RDLC, Ms. Graham said 75-80% of the staff is in place and interviews are underway for the remaining positions. Ms. Graham said 50% of the staff will be existing Quincy Public Schools staff members and 50% will be new to QPS.

Mrs. Perdios asked about the approval timeline, Dr. Perkins said the site visit is already completed and we are expecting approval in time to open the summer program. DESE has been very responsive all throughout the process.

Mrs. Perdios asked for clarification on the Quincy After School Childcare program. Ms. Graham said QCARE has students on the waitlist for elementary schools in the area (Beechwood Knoll, Bernazzani, Wollaston) who will be offered seats

Mrs. Hubley asked about the building’s capacity, 350 students total. There will be 250 Pre-K students, although some are there half day programs.

Mayor Koch said a lot of work has been done to get to the completion stage on this project, thanked the team for all of their work. For School Committee, there will be a budget impact with the new hires, but there will be long-term savings on out of district tuitions.


New Business

Chapter 70 Funding

Director of Business James Mullaney updated School Committee that he recently met with Eric Mason, Senator Keenan, and financial staff from DESE on the Chapter 70 appropriation for Quincy (approximately $30 per student).

Mrs. Lebo shared the analysis prepared by the Haverhill School Committee with proposals to increase the Chapter 70 funding at the state level, distributed to School Committee members.

Mayor Koch asked what is Chapter 70 funding for Haverhill ($87 million vs. $49 million for Quincy). Mr. Mullaney said that Quincy’s required contribution is the 4th highest in the state, 31st in funding allocation for large districts, 11th largest district in enrollment. Under the current formula, the wealth of the community (real estate values) and the income of the community are the factors for Chapter 70. Quincy has four times the real estate value of Haverhill and five times the income. Quincy gets 27% of budget from Chapter 70 funding.

Mayor Koch said the city is being punished for being successful. Mayor Koch asked if the population served in the school system (high needs, economically disadvantaged, special education, English Learners) is a factor. Mr. Mullaney said it is acknowledged, but not funded. Mr. Mullaney noted that the City carries the health benefits, capital expenditures, debt services, Police, Fire, DPW, Natural Resources, Public Buildings, none are in the school budget.

Mayor Koch doesn’t support the inflation adjustments to Chapter 70 proposal, would like to urge the state delegation for the formula to be recalculated.

Mr. Gutro asked if there is a way to get credit for the city’s investments in supporting the school system. Mr. Mullaney said those are submitted under Schedule 19 and helps us meet the net school spending requirement.

Mayor Koch suggested drafting a letter to the state delegation to express the School Committee’s position.

Mr. Gutro made a motion to ask Superintendent Mulvey to draft a letter, seconded by Mrs. Hubley. On a voice vote, the ayes have it.

Mrs. Perdios asked Mr. Mullaney what is a potential solution to this issue, Mayor Koch said this will be included in the draft letter for School Committee review.


New Business

School Committee Subcommittee Operations

Mrs. Lebo said that at the recent meeting with the Massachusetts Association of School Committees Field Representative Jim Hardy, School Committee was informed that Subcommittee Meetings where all members participate need to be posted as a Meeting of the Whole.

Mrs. Lebo made a motion to refer School Committee Policy Book Section 2.3.3 Subcommittee Operations to Policy Subcommittee. Mrs. Hubley seconded the motion and on a voice vote, the ayes have it.

Mrs. Perdios asked for the Policy meeting where this is discussed to be scheduled as a Meeting of the Whole.


New Business

Superintendent’s Goals 2023-2024 (VOTE)

Mrs. Lebo made a motion to approve the Superintendent’s Goals for 2023-2024. Mr. Gutro seconded the motion and on a voice vote, the ayes have it.


New Business

School Choice Participation (VOTE)

Mrs. Lebo made a motion for the Quincy Public Schools to not participate in School Choice for the 2024-2025 School Year. Mr. Gutro seconded the motion and on a roll call vote, the ayes have it, 6-0. Mrs. Cahill was absent.


Consent Agenda

Approval of 3/20/2024 Regular Meeting Minutes

Grant Acceptance

Mr. Gutro made a motion to approve the items listed under the Consent Agenda. Mrs. Hubley seconded the motion and on a roll call vote, the ayes have it, 6-0. Mrs. Cahill was absent.


Additional Business

There was no Additional Business.



Mayor Koch noted upcoming School Committee Regular Meetings on May 8, 2024; and June 12, 2024 at 6:30 pm at the Coddington Building. The May 22, 2024 meeting will be held at Historic City Hall at 6:30 pm in order to recognize the graduating seniors in the National Honor Society.


Reports of Subcommittees

Mayor Koch noted that Subcommittee minutes are posted on the Quincy Public Schools website in the School Committee section.

Athletics & Wellness

Mr. Bregoli reviewed the March 20, 2024 meeting of the Athletics & Wellness Subcommittee where Athletic Director Kevin Mahoney reviewed the Winter 2023-24 season and previewed the Spring 2024 season for middle and high school Athletics.

Teaching & Learning

Mrs. Lebo reviewed the March 27, 2024 meeting of the Teaching & Learning Subcommittee where Coordinator of Mathematics Kim Quinn and consultant Molly Vokey presented on Mathematics instruction in the middle schools; Curriculum Director Michael Marani and Assistant Principal Susan Foley presented on the MCAS Civics pilot; and an update on Early College High School program to pilot awarding Associates degrees; and the Superintendent’s Goals for 2023-2024 were shared.


Mr. Gutro reviewed the Policy Subcommittee meeting from March 27, 2024 where the revisions to the Health Policies discussed tonight under Old Business were reviewed and accepted.

Mr. Gutro made a motion to remove items #14 School Committee Policy 2.5.7 School Committee-Staff Communication and #16 2024-2025 School Year Calendar from Policy Subcommittee. Mrs. Hubley seconded the motion, and on a voice vote, the ayes have it

As there were no corrections to the minutes of the March 20, 2024 Athletics & Wellness and March 27, 2024 Teaching & Learning and Policy Subcommittees, the minutes were approved as presented.


Executive Session

There was no Executive Session.



Mrs. Lebo made a motion to adjourn at 9:15 p.m. The motion was seconded by Mr. Bregoli and on a voice vote, the ayes have it.