May 18, 2011 School Committee Meeting


Regular Meeting of the Quincy School Committee
May 18, 2011

7:00 p.m.
City Council Chambers, City Hall

I. Approval of Minutes: Regular minutes for and Executive Session minutes for May 4, 2011 and regular session minutes for April 6, 2011 which were tabled by Mrs. Bragg at your last meeting.

II. Superintendent’s Report:

A. National Honor Society (Student Recognition)

B. Lions Club Speech Contest (Student Recognition)

C. Skills USA (Student Recognition)

D. High School Graduations:
June 6 – North Quincy High School
June 7 – Quincy High School

III. Open Forum: (7:15 p.m.) 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: Mrs. Dwyer to report.

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

D. Service Animal Policy:

E. Sexual Harassment Policy:

F. Harassment Policy:

V. New Business:

A. QPS Substitute Teacher Information: Mrs. Roberts and Mr. Mulvey to report.

B. CVTE Advisory Board Update: Mrs. Santoro, Mrs. Scanlon and Mr. Segalla to report.

C. School/City Building Status: Mr. Timmins and Mr. Cunniff to report.

D. Out of State Travel: Quincy High School to Kansas City, MO. (A)

E. Out of State Travel: Quincy High and North Quincy High to Spain. (B)

VI. Additional Business:

VII. Communications:

VIII. Hearings:

IX. Reports of Special Committees:

A. Budget Subcommittee: Mrs. Mahoney to report.

X. Executive Session: Collective Bargaining and Litigation Issues with QEA

XI. Adjournment:

Subcommittees of the School Committee

Subcommittee Date Referred Business Pending
Budget & Finance
Mahoney/Bragg/Lebo 10/7/2009 Half Time Teachers
  9/15/2010 Full Day Kindergarten
  9/15/2010 Opportunities & Challenges
  9/15/2010 Free & Reduced Lunch
  9/15/2010 Short & Long Term Goals
School Facilities Management    
Dwyer/Lebo/McCarthy 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 Track
  3/3/2010, 9/29/2010 Coddington Hall
Health, Safety, Security & Transportation    
McCarthy/Isola/Dwyer 3/17/2010 North Quincy Traffic Intersection
  3/26/2008 Increase School Breakfast Participation
School Policy    
Bragg/Isola/Dwyer 3/11/2009 MS Interim Letters
  9/15/2010 CPR/ADE Training
  10/2010 Harassment Policy
  11/17/2010 Polling Places
  11/17/2010 Internet/Technology Policy re: Social Networks
  1/5/2011 CTE Admissions Policy
  3/23/2011 CTE Program Improvement
  3/23/2011 CORIs
Special Education    
Lebo/McCarthy/Mahoney 1/17/2007 Substitute Teachers for SPED
  9/24/2008 INSPIRE Initiative
Rules, Post Audit & Oversight    
Isola/Mahoney/Bragg 10/29/2008 Faxon Field
Channel 22    
Mahoney/McCarthy 10/17/2007 Encourage greater use of



Quincy, Massachusetts - May 18, 2011
Regular Meeting of the Quincy School Committee

Regular Mtg.

A regular meeting of the Quincy School Committee was held on Wednesday, May 18, 2011 in the City Council Chambers, City Hall. Present were: Mr. Dave McCarthy, Ms. Barbara Isola, Mrs. Emily Lebo, Jo-Ann Bragg, Mrs. Elaine Dwyer, Mrs. Anne Mahoney, and Mayor Koch, Chairman

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; Messrs. Mulvey, Mullaney, Draicchio, Murphy and Keith Segalla. Ms. Papile, Todd and Roberts. Ms. Allison Cox, QEA President, Tracey Christello, Citywide and Donna Niosi, QHS Student Representative.

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Reg. Mins. Approved 4/6/2011

On a motion by Mrs. Bragg, seconded by Mr. McCarthy, the Committee approved the April 6, 2011 regular minutes as amended. There was one change in the minutes. The ayes have it.

Reg. Mins approved 5/4/2011 Exec. Session Mins. Approved 3/23/2011

On a motion by Mrs. Bragg, seconded by Mrs. Lebo, the Committee amended the May 4, 2011 regular minutes to reflect that Mrs. Dwyer and Mrs. Bragg abstained from approval of the Executive Session minutes for March 23, 2011. The ayes have it.

Exec.Session Mins. Approved 5/4/2011

On a motion by Dwyer, seconded by Mrs. Lebo, the Committee approved the Executive Session minutes for May 4, 2011. On a roll call vote, the motion passed 5-0. MRS. DWYER and MRS. BRAGG ABSTAINED.

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Student Recognition Nat. Hon. Society

This evening, the Committee recognized the National Honor Society graduating seniors from North Quincy and Quincy High School, the Lions Club International Essay Contest winner, and the Skills USA student. The students were presented a Certificate of Recognition by the Committee.

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Open Forum

Ms. Linda Perry asked the School Committee to look into the School Committee meetings not being shown on Channel 22. They are supposed to be shown at noontime and 7:00 p.m. School Committee meetings will be replayed. They haven’t been played since January. Mrs. Cathy Hogan spoke to a request she had to teach physics and geometry in a new and different way. The Superintendent will look into this.

Ms. Tracey Christello, Citywide would like the School Committee to: – restore literacy, restore media, restore technology in the middle schools, reading in the middle schools, include community service requirement at the high school, standardizing of math packets and reading lists. Also, the high school foreign language class sizes are getting larger. There are not enough seats in the lab programs.

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Bldg. Update

Maintenance has been busy getting Veterans Stadium ready for graduations. Electricians with Mike Draicchio have been tweaking security systems in the elementary schools. A bucket truck was used to fix outdoor lighting. Mr. McCarthy inquired about a leak in the Guidance area at the new high school. Mr. Murphy said they are putting together a punch list working with Mr. Santoro and Eugene Caruso.

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QHS Bldg. Committee Mrs. Dwyer reports

The Quincy High School Building Committee met today to review the latest tracking log for repairs at Quincy High School. They replaced the entire damaged carpet from the Glycol leak. There will be a Facilities Subcommittee meeting next week to go review details. There will be a final walk through in third week in July. Mr. Santoro has requested his staff to report to him anything in the building that is not working probably.

Mrs. Lebo inquired about the auditorium seating. A mechanism in 12 of the chairs has failed.

Mr. McCarthy inquired about the gym floor. Kenro has been back out and did a test patch. The gym flooring was not dry enough when it was installed and painted. Mr. Santoro, Mr. Cunniff, and Tishman will meet about the quality of that work. Mr. McCarthy asked that Kevin Segalla be made aware because he has summer rentals in that gym.

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Central Bldg. Committee Mrs. Bragg reports

Central Building Committee met on May 10 and was attended by Mayor Koch, Superintendent DeCristofaro, Jen Fay Beers, Anne Mahoney, Joanne Bragg, Doug Gutro, Mike McFarland and Tacky Chan. The neighbors want communication as the building goes up. A hot line will be established for the neighbors. Ai3 presented all phases of construction. A traffic study was done and the intersections can handle the volume of traffic. A meeting with Jack Gillan is scheduled. No soil needs to be removed. There was discussion about flooding. They discussed rain gardens and catch basins. Landscaping, the exterior building material will be high quality and low maintenance materials that will fit into the historical nature of our City. There were questions regarding paving Old Colony Road, parking on St Ann’s Road, and the Stadium walls, how the roof is designed to handle snow, rain, and drifts.

Neighborhood houses need to be protected during demolition. Demolition will begin in September. The new school should be ready for September 2013. Tomorrow night at Central there will be a PTO meeting at 7:00 p.m. to do the presentation again.

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Service Animal Policy 9.7.12 approved

On a motion by Mrs. Bragg, seconded by Mr. McCarthy, the Committee approved the Service Animal Policy 9.7.12. On a roll call vote, the motion passed unanimously 7-0.

Harassment Policy 1.8 Approved

On a motion by Mrs. Bragg, seconded by Ms. Isola, the Committee approved the Harassment Policy 1.8. On a roll call vote, the motion passed unanimously 7-0.

Sexual Harassment Policy 1.8.1 Approved

On a motion by Mrs. Bragg, seconded by Mr. McCarthy, the Committee approved the Sexual Harassment Policy 1.8.1 with an amendment that ”this policy also covers field trips and athletic events.” On a roll call vote, the motion passed unanimously 7-0.

On a motion by Mrs. Bragg, seconded by Mrs. Lebo, the Committee approved the Policy Subcommittee minutes for May 3, 2011. The ayes have it.

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Substitute Teacher Process Mrs. Robert/Mr. Mulvey Report

Mrs. Colleen Roberts and Mr. Kevin Mulvey reviewed the Substitute Teacher process. The requirements for a substitute teacher are 60 college credits or an Associate’s Degree or higher. Every applicant fills out documents taken off our website. They bring them into the Human Resources Department where every applicant fills out a CORI form in person. They have to take the state ethics exam and update their ING Form. They are put on a monthly updated substitute list, and it is emailed to principals. It lists substitutes who have certification, a Bachelor’s Degree, 60 credits or more, and level to work. We have 300 active substitutes, 65 are certified, 20 are retires and 244 have a Bachelor’s Degree or higher and the remainder have 60 credits or higher. We are interested in substitutes who have a teaching certificate. Mrs. Roberts works closely with principals to get a teacher with certification for long-term substitutes. When they can’t find anyone, the principal and she make a decision based on a particular substitute who works in that building and works well. Department chairs, principals or the secretary call the subs. The teachers are expected to leave lesson plans, schedule of the teacher’s day and the student’s day. Principals or assistance principals orient the substitute. They check on the substitutes during the day. We are informed if the substitute doesn’t do well. Principals know the ones who are looking for a permanent job. This process has been very successful.

Ms. Isola asked how the substitutes are evaluated. Mrs. Roberts answered that they are not at this time. Mr. Mulvey said that the principals are the main source and do the walk-throughs. Principals know and let Administration know if the substitute is not working out well. They will then be removed from the list. The same is true for long-term substitutes. There is no interview process.

Mrs. Lebo was concerned that they are hired without an interview and thought that the high school principals are too busy to walk into a classroom to check on a substitute. Mrs. Lebo asked that we survey the substitutes to see if they have everything they need when they go into a classroom.

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CTE Advisory Board

The Center for Technical Education Advisory Board presented their Advisory Report to the School Committee. Mr. Keith Segalla and Ms. Gina Scanlon introduced Mr. Zachary Egan, Chairman. Mr. Egan is an engineer at Gillette and a graduate of North Quincy High School 2002. A graduate of UMass Lowell with a degree in Engineering, he now works at Gillett and is a mentor to the QPS Robotics team. Mr. Egan highlighted the CTE Advisory Board Report. They have an active and involved Advisory Committee. This group meets formally with teachers and administrators to determine new and emerging technologies and employment trends. They have attempted to expand opportunities for industry partners to share their expertise and knowledge, to promote curriculum updates, program direction, improvements, feedback on successful employment. They provide personal resources, sharing industry trends and emerging needs. They provide paid and unpaid job shadowing and internships in employment opportunities. They also provide donated equipment and instructional materials and opportunities for graduating students.

The Advisory Committee met in the spring of 2010 to establish priorities and again in October 2010. They presented the Board’s goals. The members reviewed the list of program needs for 2010-2011 and the 2011-2012 requests from the Perkins Grant. Mr. Segalla said he received $126,000 for this year from the grant. We prioritize first, safety is the main concern. The School Committee said if there are any critical needs, he should make the Committee aware.

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Saville Ave Houses in Subcommittee

Mrs. Dwyer met with the Superintendent and Mr. Cunniff. The Superintendent said he sees no educational use for the two houses on Saville Ave. Mrs. Dwyer put them into Subcommittee.

Coddington Hall in Subcommittee

Coddington Hall will be used for school administration. Mrs. Dwyer put that into the Facilities Subcommittee. City Hall has hired an architect to design the office space. There is a Capital Improvement Plan budget of $1.5 million to renovate this building. It should be ready within two years.

Old QHS Bldg.

With regard to the old Quincy High School, Mr. Cunniff said he is working with Symmes Mani & McKee, the architects of the new Quincy High School. They will do the final design of that lot with regard to landscaping, drainage, additional offsite parking, green space. SMMA will present several options and the City will pick one of those. There is some overlap from past work with the high school. Part of the old Quincy High School that was supposed to be demolished is still standing. There is a proposal of $175,000 for SMMA and the City has budgeted around $200,000 for testing services.

Mr. Cunniff is optimistic that the old Quincy High school will be down before school starts, at least the abatement work should be finished by then. If not, during Christmas recess. Mr. Cunniff will report back to the full School Committee and keep the Quincy High School Building Committee involved. The Committee asked where the funding is coming from. Mr. Cunniff said this project will cost around $7 million. This includes all the architectural services, demolishing and siting services. There are some open purchase orders available from the new Quincy High School. There is contingency money which will be used to offset this amount. On the City side, there is about $3.5 million available in contingency money. He expects around $200,000 from Gilbane. The Mayor said the School Committee would be voting on the design for that area and Mr. Santoro would be involved.

Coddington Hall

The estimated minimum cost for renovations to Coddington Hall would be $1.5 million. With regard to the NAGE lease, Mr. Timmins said it has expired. The Superintendent and he will meet with NAGE and tell them how long the school department will stay at NAGE.

Mr. Cunniff said Gilbane is still under contract. Money has been held over because the new Quincy High School is not closed out yet. After we finalize the punch list, do the walk through and things are corrected, we will close out, probably in September.

Mrs. Mahoney asked if they didn’t spend all the money how much of that is left. Mr. Cunniff said there are 11 different purchase orders that have a dollar value on them that were not used. It totaled more than proposed extra services. SMMA proposed $175,000 for extra services, however, there is money that was already slated for SSMA that we did not use for other design services. That money is still available. Mrs. Mahoney said she had wished they received a packet of information. She understood that we have $3.5 million left over to do this project, but it is estimated it’s going to cost $7 million. Where will the rest of the money come from? Mr. Cunniff said they are not looking at this as a separate project because we have to close off the hole in the back of the building. In terms of design services he is very cautious in the way he spends the money. He doesn’t get involved where the money is generated from.

Mr. Cunniff said from verbal conversations he has had, half of that $7 million will get us to removing the building and capping the site.

Mrs. Mahoney asked if we have approval to take the school down? Mr. Timmins said he is dealing with the Mass Historic Society and Army Corps. The Committee asked to be kept posted.

Mr. Timmins said he will email copies of the NAGE lease payment terms to the Committee.

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QHS to MO Approved

On a motion by Mrs. Bragg, seconded by Mrs. Dwyer, the Committee approved Quincy High School trip to The Skills USA National Conference in Kansas City, MO from June 18 to June 15, 2011. The ayes have it.

NQHS to Spain

Approved On a motion by Mrs. Lebo, seconded by Ms. Isola, the Committee approved North Quincy High School trip to Spain from April 19, 2012 to April 26, 2012. The ayes have it.

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Additional Business

Ms. Kristen Powers will be present at the June 15 School Committee meeting.

On June 10, Columbia Pictures will take a portion of the Wollaston parking lot from 11:00 a.m. to midnight. They will park four or five vans. The PTO is on board. The Superintendent will report back to the Committee. Mr. Timmins will draw up a contract and all funds will go directly to the Wollaston School.

Dave McCarthy asked for a presentation from the Parks Department. He is looking for a schedule of mowing, principals’ comments. The Superintendent asked the Committee to send him questions.

Mr. McCarthy asked that the front of the old Quincy High School be cleaned and the grass mowed. He asked that Mr. Segalla have his custodians pick up the trash around the old high school and in the buses.

Mr. McCarthy asked about the elevator at Quincy High School. The Superintendent answered that there were four call backs since March 10 – all under warranty.

With regard to the movie money, the Mayor said $10,000 will be used for the fields for the Stadium. The other would go to school Athletic budget.

Mrs. Bragg asked that the CTE Admission policy be on the next agenda.

Mrs. Lebo congratulated Ms. JoAnn Morrissey, Food Services Director, for getting a grant.

Mrs. Mahoney asked the Superintendent to check into Channel 22. She would like to see a schedule.

Mrs. Mahoney again asked the Mayor consider using Quincy people when he puts in the new roofing for the schools. The Mayor said there is an ordinance he has to follow.

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Mrs. Dwyer removed Central Middle School, Coddington Hall, add (May 18 $1.5 appropriation) and future use of houses on Saville Ave. on the Facilities Subcommittee. There will be a School Facilities Subcommittee meeting on June 8, 2011 at 4:30 p.m. to discuss all the outstanding School Improvement Plan work orders and the timeline for summer work.

Policy Subcommittee

Mrs. Bragg removed Middle School Interim Letters, Harassment Policy, CORIs, Internet/Technology Policy re Social Networks moved into negotiations.

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Gift – US Flags

On a motion by Mrs. Bragg, seconded by Mr. McCarthy, the Committee accepted 4,800 flags donated by Uncle Sam Rounsevile and Ms. Jean Kenney, estimated cost $1,200.00. The ayes have it.

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Student Recognition Jr. ROTC

Congratulations went to the Junior ROTC at North Quincy High School for earning the Distinguished Unit Award with Merit for academic year 2010-2011.

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Budget Subcommittee Mrs. Mahoney reports

The Budget and Finance Committee will meet on Thursday, May 26 at 4:30 p.m. There is an increase in staff to accommodate ARRA positions. Five Special Education positions in the ARRA funding and ten in Title 1 ARRA funding. In order to get them into our budget, specialists were put into regular Title 1 and classroom teachers were taken out of Title 1 and put into our budget. The net effect is there will be 15 new positions in the Quincy Public Schools but not new to our school system. We had to absorb 15 teachers. There was a reduction in longevity to reflect decrease retirements. These funds were shifted to address new positions. We expect 14 retirements.

The ROTC program is now housed in North Quincy High School only. The money from the Air Force for the instructor’s salary goes directly to the City. The superintendent is working with the Air Force, and depending on the numbers; we may go back to two instructors. There are only five or six ROTC students at Quincy High School. The staff members are split between Quincy High and North Quincy. Next year, any student that wants ROTC will be able to attend North Quincy High School.

Coor. of Custodians moved to Dept. Head Line

Mrs. Lebo made a motion, seconded by Mrs. Bragg, to move the Head of Custodians out of the Custodial line into the Coordinators and Department Head section. On a roll call vote, the motion passed 4-0.

There is an increase in funding of $100,000 in the Textbook line to begin implementation of new common core requirements. Within two years, we will need new math books for the new Math Curriculum Frameworks.

There was an increase in funding to upgrade system software and classroom computers.

The Bernazzani Elementary School is the only school that uses oil. All our other school buildings are on gas. Mr. Mullaney increased this line to reflect anticipated increase in energy costs.

There is an increase in funding for a planned upgrade of the bus fleet. Mr. Mullaney has a plan in place to purchase new vehicles. We have 13 large buses. Mr. Mullaney would like to purchase six new mini-buses, four large buses, three vans, one of which will be for the handicapped. We would be looking at one handicap van for a total cost of $735,000 for new buses over a three year plan. While our buses are safe it is getting harder to maintain them.

Mrs. Lebo stated that we use seven buses to transport students and in 2000 we purchased six large buses for Athletics. She would like people to know that the Athletic Department is being subsidized a lot greater than it apparently is as well as the bus drivers. We are using six buses for athletics, plus bus drivers.

Regular Schools & Athletics $ 70,738,425


Regular Schools 18,594,535

Additional Equipment 108,500

Pensions 33,441

Total Budget $ 89,474,901


Circuit Breaker (1,938,000)

Educational Job Grant (1,298,455)

Total Appropriation $ 86,238,446

Mrs. Bragg asked that we take a look at the budget to find some money for media. Reading and technology was cut in the middle schools last year. A breakdown of overtime for the bus line $60,000. Mrs. Bragg asked to relook at the MASC dues –provide a cost figure for the Committee. Mrs. Lebo stressed the importance of having a Director of Curriculum. While she applauds Ms. Roberts for the work she does, we are a school system with over 9,000 students and we will be addressing the new assessments in the next five years. There will be changes across the board in curriculum. At the next meeting, the members will be looking at the movie money.

On a motion by Mrs. Mahoney, seconded by Mrs. Bragg, the Committee approved the Budget and Finance Subcommittee minutes. The ayes have it.

Mrs. Mahoney inquired about the City Council meeting who identified $2.5 million for the City side. They said that the offsets would come from the unemployment compensation budget that showed a surplus of almost $2million Her concern was that the school department is asking for the reconciliation money, from the 2011 budget. We anticipated an unemployment transfer that is separate from the appropriation applied to our schools last year. She was looking for clarification. Mayor Koch answered that everything is in the budget the School Department has received for FY2012.

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Sp.Ed.Subcommittee Mrs. Lebo reports

The Special Education Subcommittee met on May 11, 2011. Mr. Mulvey went through the CORI process and its history. Everyone that works in the schools -- volunteers, chaperones, including bus drivers, are CORIed. Mr. Mulvey explained the Family Education Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA). QPAC has a new Executive Board. The dates for next year were established. They are October 26, February 1, 2012, March 28, 2012 and May 23, 2012. There was a short discussion about program movement and if students in substantially separate programs make too many school site changes. Ms. Todd reported that the way CARES is structured was most beneficial to students and that there is no space at Squantum. On a motion by Mrs Lebo, seconded by Mrs. Bragg, the Committee accepted the Special Education Subcommittee minutes. The ayes have it.

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The Committee noted the following retirement:

Teacher Margaret Walker

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Executive Session

On a motion by Mr. McCarthy, seconded by Ms. Isola, the Committee went into Executive Session at 10:42 p.m. for Collective Bargaining and Litigation Issues with the QEA. On a roll call vote, the motion passed 5-0. MRS. BRAGG and MRS. DWYER ABSTAINED. The Committee did not return to Open Session.