Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Live Reporting: School Committee - Aug 11, 2015

Present: Douglas, Mullen, Trahan, Jewell, Rohrbach (late due to train)
Absent: O'Malley, Clement

1. Routine Business

Citizen’s Comments - none
Review of Agenda - none
Minutes: I recommend approval of the minutes from the July 28, 2015 School Committee Meeting.
motion to approve, seconded, passed 4-0

Payment of Bills Mr. Clement
Payroll Mrs. Douglas
FHS Student Representatives
Correspondence: Budget to Actual

2. Guests/Presentations

a. New Administrators
Peter Light, Principal - Franklin High School

  • Brenda Redding, 11 years in district, 6 years at FHS; one of the assistant principal
  • Craig Williams, 7 years at Sullivan Middle School; another new assistant principal

Maria Weber and Lisa Markiesian could not make it tonight and will come to another meeting

Debbie Dickson, new Director of Student Services
here about 30 days here, 30 years experience with special education background in schools
looking to increase equity access to the student services

b. Handbooks
handbooks include policy and need to be approved each year

Sally Winslow, provides an overview
working to have consistent language in the handbooks and maintain some of the individuality to capture the school culture

three sections in the handbook

  • school information for grade levels (elementary, middle, high schools)
  • individual school info (arrivals/dismissals, etc.)
  • school policies

policy updates (including two policies on the agenda tonight)

"Signs of Suicide" program being introduced to middle and high school
setting up a train the trainer process to help spread the word and information throughout the district
required by MA Law to provide this to students
to be implemented in 7th and 9th grades; parents will have the opportunity to opt out


basically the lunch process and updates to the policy changes were the major changes

Winslow - it has worked to benefit to have the handbooks as consistent as possible
Sabolinski - the principals are meeting all year so the cross sharing of best practice is done all the time

Question on the building entry policy
the protocols were in place and where some procedures were changed due to the building situation (i.e. Parmenter)

Question on the removal of the modulars?
something new to think about, some parents did meet at the fence and we'll need to re-look at that

The DPW did a tremendous job after the contractors took the modulars down

Trahan - each school has their section will helps to maintain the cultural and yet they are indeed consistent across the district

Middle Schools

a comment from a custodian who had come through Franklin schools, the handbook at that time was one page; folded over with the logo on the front, the flag on the back. Now we have a 90 plus page handbook.

the generational differences are dealt within the district on a regular basis given the nature of the population

High School

Peter Light - not a significant number of changes, did look at the absence policy and attendance; conversations with families on long absences, wanted to clarify the procedures for excessive absences; if on track to miss more than 20%, they will reach out to the family

other than the changes are mostly name changes, the changes are shown in 'green' but some of them are grammatical so they will change before publication

guidance workload is being looked at to adjust, splitting by alphabet was not working as desired, so the housing split will be assigned randomly. There is no impact to the juniors and seniors. Some sophomores will remain with current counselors others will get re-assigned; adjustments to be made within the next two weeks and then communicated out

Any changes to the building?
choosing not to address much at this point due to the change in assistant principals; use of the IDs is not a big deal, the food policy is to be looked at. Academic honesty policy would be looked at to reflect 21st century learning

(two minutes break)

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