Jan. 9, 2008 School Committee Meeting


Regular Meeting of the Quincy School Committee January 9, 2008

Merrymount Elementary School
7:00 p.m. Regular Meeting

I. Approval of Minutes: Regular Session minutes for December 12, 2008.

II. Superintendent’s Report:

A. Welcome New Members
B. Health Services Newsletter
C. Drop Out Report (Dept. of Education)
D. Winter Institute

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. Canavan to report.
B. Update on the New Quincy High School: Mr. Ryan to report.
C. Update on Central:
D. Ms. Stice made a motion, seconded by Mr. Mulvey, that at the elementary level, a statement noting that “parents should contact their principal if they have difficulty paying a fee” will appear on every notice sent to parents that involves a fee of any kind; and that such a statement should be created by the elementary school principals. The Committee asked that the Superintendent look into that (tying it into the free and reduced lunches). The motion remains on the table.

V. New Business:

A. Report from School Building Assessment Teams
B. Appointment of Director of Career and Technical Education: See Attachment A.
C. Overnight Student Trip: Approval for Atlantic Middle School to Camp Burgess, Sandwich, MA. See Attachment B.
D. Gift: Acceptance of $500.00 from the Quincy Point Congregational Church to Project Access. See Attachment C.

VI. Additional Business:

VII. Communications:

VIII. Hearings: - none

IX. Reports of Special Committees:

X. Executive Session:

XI. Adjournment:

Subcommittees of the School Committee

Subcommittee Date Referred Business Pending
Budget & Finance
McCarthy/Stice/Mahoney 11/19/2003 Vending Machines in Schools
  1/7/2004 Marshall Remedial Action Plan
  5/27/2004 (Subcommittee) Transportation Fees
  4/11/2007 HS Health Curriculum
Building Needs    
Dwyer/McCarthy/Timmins 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
  1/25/2006 Fire Extinguishers
  1/25/2006 Outdoor Lighting
  2/8/2006 Conservation
Health, Safety & Security    
Mahoney/Dwyer/Timmins 10/18/2006 NQHS Traffic & Drop off
  4/11/2007 HS Health Curriculum
School Policy    
Stice/Mahoney/Mulvey 1/10/2001 Policy Manual
  11/19/2003 Vending Machines in Schools
  10/18/2006 Sliding Scale for Student Fees
  3/21/2007 Student Records/Transfers, etc.
  5/2/2007 Bullying
  10/3/2007 Student Agenda Books
  11/28/2007 Progress Reports
Special Education    
Timmins/McCarthy/Mulvey 1/17/2007 Emergency Information Form
  1/17/2007 Substitute Teachers for SPED
  3/21/2007 Implementation of IEPs
Rules, Post Audit & Oversight    
Superintendent's Evaluation    
Dwyer/McCarthy 10/3/2007 Evaluation Format
Channel 22    
Timmins/Mahoney 10/17/2007 Encourage greater use of



Quincy, Massachusetts - January 9, 2008
Regular Meeting of the Quincy School Committee

Regular Meeting

A regular meeting of the Quincy School Committee was held on Wednesday, January 9, 2008 at the Merrymount Elementary School. Present were Mrs. Mrs. Anne Mahoney, Mr. Kevin Mulvey, Mrs. Jo-Ann Bragg, Mr. Jim Timmins, Mrs. Elaine Dwyer, Mayor Koch and Mr. Dave McCarthy, Vice Chairman.

Vice Chairman Presiding

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The Superintendent called the roll and all members were present. Also present were: Dr. Richard DeCristofaro, Secretary, Mrs. Tefta Burrelli Clerk. Dr. Pattavina, Messrs. O’Brien, Walsh, McPhee, Kevin and Keith Segalla, Ms. Powell, Hughes, and Roberts. Mr. Paul Phillips, QEA President, was present.

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Moment of Silence

A moment of silence was observed for the following Quincy Public Schools staff who recently passed away: Thomas Maher, custodian; Kevin Maldonado, Science teacher; Noreen Myers, paraprofessional; Rita Nazzaro, retired secretary; and Marilyn Waywood, retired secretary.

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Reg.Mins Approved 12/12/2007

On a motion by Mrs. Dwyer, seconded by Mr. Mulvey, the Committee approved the regular session minutes for December 12, 2007. The ayes have it.

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Welcome by Principal

Ms. Ann Pegg welcomed everyone to the Merrymount Elementary School. Ms. Pegg commended her staff who continually works to raise the bar. Students are showing continued growth in all academic areas.

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Supts. Report

Quincy received a $30,000 grant from the Department of Education. The grant award will fund a program beginning in the spring and continuing in the Summer for students transitioning from eighth to ninth grade. Thanks went to Janice Erler for her hard work.

The Committee received a copy of the Health Services News Letter. Thanks went to Ms. Jane Kisielius.

The Committee received a copy of the Drop-out Report. The Committee will review this information. The members received a pamphlet for Winter Institute which begins this Saturday.

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Assessment Teams Update

The Committee took out of order, New Business, Report from School Building Assessment Teams. The Merrymount Assessment Team and the Central Assessment Team were present to review for the members how their teams work. The teams assess the needs of the students, assess their curricular strengths and weaknesses and assess their practices as educators. The assessment team provides classroom teachers with individual student reports generated from Test Wiz. These reports give teachers a detailed picture of individual student performance on MCAS testing. Along with classroom data, teachers use these reports to help develop Individual Student Success Plans. The assessment team presents data to the staff. The staff then determines grade level and school wide curriculum strengths and weaknesses. These discoveries go into developing school wide Smart Goals and Professional Development Plans. The Merrymount Assessment Team is concentrating on math. They hold a Math-a-thon, Math Fair, Continental Math league to keep students motivated.

Central’s goal is to improve overall test scores on the MCAS. This assessment team worked with the math team. They looked at all the incorrect answers the students had and came up with several different answers. They aligned their curriculum. They have a “Challenge Day,” a “Hero Day” and Healthy Choices to keep their students motivated.

The Committee asked how/if this data follows the individual students, however, Ms. Fay stated they haven’t come that far yet. Transition is a big part of guidance. Cards do follow the students. Mr. O’Brien added that this is called “data mining.” They collect data all the way through high school. Mr. O’Brien anticipates that Quincy will get there, but we’re not there yet.

There was a two minutes recess at 8:05 p.m.

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At 8:14 p.m. the Committee went on with the business at hand. There was no update on building projects, renovations and construction.

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Mrs. Dwyer reported that a Building Committee Meeting is scheduled for mid- January and then hold a Building Needs Subcommittee to update everyone. She would like a presentation at the next School Committee meeting January 23 on the new high school project. The next week will be closing dates for the subcontractors. Phase II is still 50% completed. The Science Technology wing will be poured in February. A 36” drain pipe has been installed in Woodward Ave. There is a meeting scheduled for next Monday with Gilbane. Mr. O’Brien will be updating the webpage. Dr. DeCristofaro and Mrs. Dwyer will make a presentation before the City Council soon.

At this time, Mr. Timmins reported that he had driven by the site and found a gate open and no security guard. He got out of his car and walked the site. A few workers there ignored him. He said he hopped on a crane and then strolled the first two floors of the Annex building on Saville Ave. The building was wide open and only one person there on the third floor. He found this very disturbing. Mrs. Dwyer will bring this up to Gilbane again.

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Central Middle School

Mr. McCarthy reported that we are awaiting information from the MSBA on the feasibility study for Central Middle School.

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Motion re. “fees” Approved

Mrs. Bragg made a motion, seconded by Mrs. Mahoney to take the tabled motion regarding fees off the table. The ayes have it. On a motion by Mrs. Bragg, seconded by Mr. Mulvey, the Committee approved the motion that the elementary level, a statement noting that “parents should contact their principal if they have difficulty paying a fee” will appear on every notice sent to parents that involves a fee of any kind; and that such a statement should be created by the elementary school principals. The ayes have it.

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Appointment Dir. of Career & Tech. Ed.

Following appropriate advertising, interviews were held on January 3, and the Superintendent met with two candidates for the position of Director of Career and Technical Education. The Superintendent announced that he is appointing Mr. Keith Segalla to the position of Director of Career and Technical Education for the Quincy Public Schools.

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Atlantic to Burgess

On a motion by Mr. Mulvey, seconded by Mr. Timmins, the Committee approved a trip to Camp Burgess for Atlantic Middle School from June 3, 2008 to June 6, 2008. The ayes have it.

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Gift - Homeless

On a motion by Mrs. Dwyer, seconded by Mrs. Mahoney, the Committee accepted a gift of $500 from the Quincy Point Congregational Church to Project Access- Educational Services to Homeless Children. The ayes have it.

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Mrs. Bragg will hold a Policy Subcommittee meeting to review the remaining items in her subcommittee.

SC to review Agendas

Mr. McCarthy said he will discuss with the members and brainstorm agenda items. The members would like more input as to what goes on the agenda.

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Letter to Sun Approved

On a motion by Mrs. Bragg, seconded by Mrs. Dwyer, the Committee approved a letter written by Mr. Ken McPhee to the Quincy Sun regarding security in the schools. The members said the letter was well written and addressed the security issues. It should be shared with the public. Mr. Mulvey agreed that it outlines many of the programs in place, many of which we can’t reveal for security reasons. Regarding the article in the Quincy Sun, Mrs. Dwyer said there were a lot of things in the article that are not true. She didn’t think that the person had ever been in the schools. Parents should know that the children are safe and the teachers are safe. The ayes have it.

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The Committee noted the following retirements:

Sr.Clerk & Typist: Janet Tantillo


The Committee noted the following resignations:

Teacher: Barbara Cross

Paraprofessionals: Linda Della Croce,  Annette Oliver


The Committee noted the following appointments:

Teachers: Patricia Dwyer,  Joan Walsh

Occupational Therapist: Abby Thorell

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On a motion by Mrs. Timmins, seconded by Mrs. Dwyer, the Committee adjourned for the evening at 8:36 p.m. On a roll cal vote, the motion passed unanimously 7-0.