Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Live reporting; School Committee - September 23, 2014

Present: Douglas, O'Malley (late),Rohrbach, Clement, Mullen, Trahan, Jewell
Absent:  none

1 - Routine business

no citizens comments
no adjustments to agenda
motion to approve minutes from 9/9/14; second, approve 6-0

FHS Representatives
Conor Lemanowicz - things going well; Guidance for application process, excellent help as he is the first of his family going to college and no one to get the inside advice from
Justin Bates - boys soccer won today 9-0

Parent night -open house process to have parents walk through the schedule; how aware are folks of this happening?
maybe something on the website, additional communications coming for 'Curriculum Night"

2 - Guests/Presentations

Gabriela Blood, Haley Frank 

went on trip to China 

two teachers also went on the trip but were unaware that it was the same exact trip until late in the planning process

slide capture of presentation
slide capture of presentation

(slide show to be added later)

XieXie = thank you

more ambitious in trying foods than before
developed appreciation of freedom compared to here

Mr Walsh, Mr McCarthy

the Chinese school day was longer than here; their time is spent as students and not athletes

Joyce Edwards, Jane Hogan

(slide show to be added later)

joined trip as part of the delegation of educational leaders
a country of tremendous contrasts
urban and rural; Shanghai - the New York City of China

got to do 'tourist stuff' but then also meet with educational leaders
25 school administrators from 4 states

3-4 members of the group also spoke fluent Mandarin which helped with understanding the nuances of the discussions

met with Deputy Prime Minister of  Foreign Affairs, he had met with Ambassador Kerry the week before

grades 1-9 compulsory
high school 10-12 is not mandatory

meritocracy based system (driven by test scores)

a communist party member is on each school board
curriculum materials must be approved by the party

public funded but also accept private funding (from families)

1 child/family drives the strong family focus on education

teaching is a revered and professional position in China

60% teaching, 40% spent on development and preparation of the total teaching day in China

the second language is English, there is no other language taught in Chinese schools

farmers are exempt from the 1 child rule to help encourage farming (enough hands for picking crops)

ePals, an electronic form of penpals can provide an opportunity to communicate regularly

a Needham high school student spending the summer abroad in China volunteering there

EF Tours and Primary Source are good collaborators in fostering global education
the beginning

Is it time to teach Chinese at FHS?
the major hurdle is maintaining the funding and the resources; manpower not available to do so currently, the resources are such in high demand we have not been able to recruit and maintain a hire

Classroom to classroom is a rich opportunity, who would take lead?
It is open to anyone, a teach could arrange thru ePals

This is already happening in some areas within Franklin, with folks having returned from these trips, the incentive will increase

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