Sept. 30, 2020 School Committee Meeting


Regular Meeting of the Quincy School Committee

Wednesday, September 30, 2020, 6:30 pm
Quincy High School Cafeteria

Per Governor Baker’s order suspending certain provisions of the Open Meeting Law, G.L. c. 30A sec. 20, the public will not be allowed to physically access this School Committee meeting. Members of the Public can access the meeting audio live on QATV Channel 22 or at The meeting will also be recorded for rebroadcast and posted on the QPS website on Friday, October 2, 2020.

I. Approval of Minutes:

A. Special Meeting Minutes for September 2, 2020 and September 9, 2020

B. Executive Session Minutes for September 2, 2020 and September 9, 2020

C. Policy Subcommittee Minutes for September 2, 2020 and September 9, 2020

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. QPS Covid-19 Metrics (with Health Commissioner Ruth Jones)

B. Preliminary 2020-21 Enrollment Update

C. Chromebooks/Technology Update

D. Quincy School~Community Partnership Update

E. Governor Baker & Board of Education Recognitions

IV. Old Business:

A. High School Hybrid Scheduling Update - Superintendent Mulvey, Mr. Shaw, Mr. Taglieri

V. New Business:

A. Chairman’s Report - Mayor Koch

B. MASC General Meeting Delegate - Mrs. Hubley

VI. Additional Business:

VII. Communications:

A. Upcoming School Committee Meetings, October 14 and 28, 2020 (Regular Meetings, 6:30 pm)

B. Upcoming Subcommittee Meetings: Budget & Finance October 14, 2020, 6:00 pm

VIII. Reports of Subcommittees: None

IX. Executive Session: Contract Negotiations

X. Adjournment:


Quincy, MASSACHUSETTS – September 30, 2020

Regular Meeting of the Quincy School Committee

Special Meeting

Vice Chair Presiding

A meeting of the Quincy School Committee was held on Wednesday, September 30, 2020 at 7:00 p.m at Quincy High School. Superintendent Kevin Mulvey called the roll and present were Mayor Thomas Koch, Mr. Paul Bregoli, Mr. Doug Gutro, Mrs. Kathryn Hubley, Mrs. Emily Lebo, Mr. Frank Santoro, and Mr. Anthony Andronico, Vice Chair.

Also present were: Superintendent Kevin Mulvey, Assistant Superintenden Erin Perkins, Ms. Allison Cox, Mr. Michael Draicchio, Mr. James Mullaney, Ms. Maura Papile, Ms. Madeline Roy, Mr. Keith Segalla, Mr. Robert Shaw, Mr. Lawrence Taglieri; Health Commissioner Ruth Jones; and Ms. Laura Owens, Clerk.

Mr. Santoro asked if there is any change to Open Meeting law that would allow for in-person participation for community members. Mr. Andronico said not yet as the Governor’s Order on public meetings is still in force.

Superintendent Mulvey recognized the following former Quincy Public Schools employees who have recently passed away: Mary Bozian, 19 years as a Special Education teacher and Guidance Counselor at Atlantic and Broad Meadows; Jean Doherty, 38 years as a teacher at the Hunting, Massachusetts Fields, Beechwood Knoll, and Parker Elementary Schools; Carol Evans, a bus driver for 35 years; Margaret McHugh, a bus driver for 30 years; Richard Ramsdell, 28 years as an Art Teacher and Coordinator of Arts & Humanities; and Robert Trott, 30 years as a teacher at Quincy Vocational Technical High School.


Approval of Minutes

Mrs. Hubley made a motion to approve the minutes of the Special Meeting Minutes for September 2, 2020 and September 9, 2020; the Executive Session Minutes for September 2, 2020 and September 9, 2020; and the Policy Subcommittee Meeting Minutes for September 2, 2020 and September 9, 2020. Mr. Bregoli seconded the motion and on a voice vote, the ayes have it.


Open Forum

For Open Forum, six letters were submitted in support of returning to full-time in-person learning from Alison Rosenthal, Katie Ollman, Kristin Campbell, Sean Glennon, Amy Kelley, and Jim Ferrara.


Superintendent’s Report

Superintendent Kevin Mulvey opened the Superintendent’s Report with Health Commissioner Ruth Jones presentation of updated COVID-19 metrics, two weeks of data from September 16 through September 29. With a daily average of confirmed cases at 4.14 over the two weeks, the City of Quincy has moved into the yellow. Several of the Quincy Public School students that are positive cases are remote students, others were hybrid. so school-based contact tracing was done and notifications to families and staff. Commissioner Jones said that PCR-based testing is considered the most reliable and she has been discussing with the Mayor and Superintendent that this be the policy for the city. The antigen-based test gives fast results, but has not been as reliable. (A student was positive on an antigen test this week but negative on the subsequent PCR test.)

Mr. Gutro asked about relationships between cases, Commissioner Jones said these are community spread, sometimes within a household. None are school-based transmissions. Mr. Gutro said the complete picture provided by the metrics is very helpful, there are no cases among QPS staff currently.

Mr. Bregoli said that Governor Baker has publicly said that communities in the white, green, and yellow are in good shape in terms of getting back to school. Commissioner Jones agreed that this change should not affect the current plans about returning Grades 4-12 hybrid. The mix of metrics shows where the cases are happening and all are factors in making appropriate decisions. There was no transmission from the positive cases who are attending school.

Mrs. Lebo asked about the positive cases that were in school. Commissioner Jones agreed that the 6-foot distancing was important, the other students in the classroom did not have to quarantine as all were wearing masks and sitting far enough apart. Mrs. Lebo thanked the staff, it is not easy to enforce the guidelines. Mr. Bregoli asked for clarification because the guidelines for dining out have been expanded to allow for 10 people to sit at a table. Commissioner Jones said that dining out is a smaller circle of transmission, these are people who are together in different phases of their life, often family groups. In a classroom setting, where students and staff are all from different households, the six-foot distance is important.

Mr. Bregoli asked about moving to the 3-foot distance, Commissioner Jones does not advocate changing this metric at this time.

Mrs. Lebo said that the choice to go out to dinner is made by adults and very different from School Committee making the decision for students to be in school full time.

Mr. Andronico asked Commissioner Jones to confirm that she agrees with the current path that School Committee has put into place and she does.

Superintendent Mulvey continued his report with an update on Quincy Public Schools Preliminary Enrollment, 9,698 students with 65 registrations still in process. 1,381 students are enrolled in the Virtual School, 51% of Kindergarten through Grade 3 students.

2,500 Chromebooks arrived at the Coddington Building on Monday, thanks to the assistance of DESE Commissioner Jeffrey Riley and Associate Commissioner Russell Johnston. Thanks to Executive Director Keith Segalla, the entire IT staff, and many Coddington Staff members, 1,300 have been distributed in the last two days. Distribution will continue this week, with 600 requests outstanding. The next shipment of Chromebooks will arrive on Monday, October 12.

Mr. Bregoli asked for clarification, families who have not yet requested to borrow Chromebooks can go to the Quincy Public Schools website and fill out the form found under Technology Links.

Superintendent Mulvey then presented an update from the Quincy School~Community Partnership: 3500 backpacks filled with school supplies were distributed to all schools; PPE donations include 500 face shields, 100,000 face masks, and PPE care packages; and technology donations have been received from Quincy College and Quincy Credit Union.

Superintendent Mulvey concluded his report by noting that Governor Baker recognized Quincy Public Schools at last Thursday’s press briefing. Yesterday, Superintendent Mulvey and Assistant Superintendent Perkins presented to the State Board of Education on the Special Education summer program initiatives. Mr. Andronico said that he was glad to see the hard work of the Quincy Public Schools team recognized by the state level, the governor confirmed his support of the Quincy Public Schools model.


Old Business

High School Hybrid Learning Model

Superintendent Mulvey introduced the high school principals who will be reviewing the final version of the hybrid plan for high schools. Based on discussions with the Re-Entry Task Force, the proposed re-entry date for Grades 4-12 would shift to Thursday, October 15 with cohort B beginning hybrid learning. Principal Shaw reviewed that this plan returns to the model first presented in August with hybrid students having a mix of synchronous learning in person and online.

Mrs. Lebo thanked the high school principals for their efforts, wants to be sure that the public knows that Quincy Public Schools is required to offer a full remote model and that the two high schools have differing levels of student interest in hybrid vs. remote. Mrs. Lebo reiterated that there will be changes in teacher assignments no matter if students remain remote or enter the hybrid model.

Mayor Koch asked about attendance and engagement. Mr. Taglieri and Mr. Shaw said the attendance is excellent, students are initially required to have their cameras on but not necessarily for the whole period. Mr. Taglieri said that teachers use breakout groups for student interactions. Mr. Shaw said that teachers Professional Development encouraged them to add interactive elements, polls and questions to be answered.

Mr. Gutro asked about average class sizes, in a normal in-person model, 22-24 is the average class size also for remote learners. For hybrid, there will be 7-10 students in a class. Mr. Gutro asked about remote students watching/ participating in a class that is taking place in person. Mr. Shaw said that teaching remotely and teaching in person are different, it would be difficult to adapt to doing both at the same time, especially the logistics of managing the technical aspects.

Mrs. Lebo said that additional technology would be needed for cameras that allow staff to move around within the classroom and what works for college students is less likely to be successful at other grade levels, teachers have not been trained, and this may require negotiation. Mrs. Lebo asked for clarification, full remote students are fully synchronous and hybrid students are not.

Mr. Bregoli suggested that technical issues would interfere with teachers’ ability to teach in person and remotely at the same time.

Mayor Koch echoed Mrs. Lebo and Mr. Bregoli’s thoughts, the principals have worked very hard on these plans, agrees that there are technology issues and School Committee needs to adopt the plan so scheduling can be completed. Mr. Santoro agreed that this would be very difficult for teachers.

Mr. Gutro asked if the plan could be revisited for the 2nd semester, but Mr. Taglieri said this is the plan until in-person learning is able to resume.

Mr. Andronico asked for clarification, the QPS Fall 2020 Re-Opening Task Force reviewed the plan yesterday and the majority are in favor of the plan.

Mayor Koch made a motion to approve the high school hybrid plan, seconded by Mrs. Hubley.

On the motion, Mrs. Lebo noted that the re-entry date is now October 15 for Grades 4-12.

On a roll call vote, the ayes have it, 7-0.


Old Business

Chairman’s Report

Mayor Koch thanked Commissioner Jones, Quincy is still below the state average for new positive cases. Mayor Koch noted that he is creating models for next year’s budget, all departments could be looking at challenges fiscally.


New Business

MASC General Meeting Delegate

Mrs. Hubley announced that on November 7, the Massachusetts Association of School Committees General Meeting will be held virtually. The MASC Resolutions to be reviewed at a subsequent meeting.

Mr. Gutro made a motion for Mrs. Hubley to serve as the Quincy School Committee Delegate to the MASC General Meeting. The motion was second by Mr. Bregoli.

On the motion, Mrs. Lebo mentioned there is a Professional Development on Cultural Relevancy that she would like to participate in. Ms. Owens will follow up about registration.

On a voice vote, the ayes have it.



Mr. Andronico announced that upcoming School Committee Meetings will be held on October 14 and October 28, 2020 all at 6:30 pm.

A Budget & Finance Subcommittee Meeting is scheduled for October 14, 2020 at 6:00 pm.


Executive Session

Mrs. Lebo made a motion for School Committee to enter into Executive Session for the purpose of contract negotiations at 8:45 pm. Mr. Bregoli seconded the motion and on a roll call vote, the ayes have it, 7-0.



As School Committee will not return to the Regular Meeting from Executive Session, the meeting was adjourned at 8:45 pm.