Wednesday, August 12, 2020

School Committee votes on plan to begin remote, transition to hybrid on a schedule

Quick Summary:

  • The School Committee after a lengthy presentation and discussion voted for the plan to begin remote learning in September and then transition to hybrid on a schedule prioritizing the high needs and younger learners first, with middle school and high school coming in at a logical break point (i.e marking period end)

  • The vote for the record was 6 for, none against with 1 abstain (D'Angelo). D'Angelo had made a motion to split the vote into two parts, one to begin remote, one on the plan itself. It was not seconded, hence dropped. The motion voted was to accept the plan as recommended by the Superintendent.

  • Dr Ed Quigley was announced as the interim principal at Davis Thayer. For those who viewed the tour of the schools via Zoom last Friday, he was the masked individual welcoming the tour to Davis Thayer.

  • The revision to the school calendar, reducing time on learning to 170 days (per DESE guidance), keeping the previously scheduled vacation periods as is, was approved by a 7-0 vote.

  • Note all votes were via roll call for this hybrid meeting, some members of the SchCom and Central office were in the Council chambers, the remainder of the SchCom was remote via Zoom. The meeting was well attended with over 320 participants via Zoom, another 16 (max) on the live steam and an unknown number via cable broadcast via Verizon/Comcast.

As with most meetings in this pandemic period, I took my notes via Twitter during the meeting reporting in real-time via the virtual session.

The Twitter hashtag can be found online #schcom0811

  • Real time reporting underway for the #schcom0811 meeting, over 200 joined via Zoom. Also on cable and live streamed

  • Superintendent report: FY 21 being level funded per state, still awaiting final #s from State, able to restore many of the individuals previously notified. Some choose to move on. District will have long term issues with funding #schcom0811

  • Dr Ed Quigley joined as interim principal for Davis Thayer, has been principal and superintendent in previous roles. #schcom0811

  • Presentation on the re-opening plan to be shared and reviewed (page by page) some additional info added since shared this weekend

  • District has until Aug 14 to submit plans #schcom0811

  • Lots of folks listening to this. Zoom has approx 250, another dozen viewing the live stream from Town page and countless others via Verizon and Comcast #schcom0811

  • For those zooming, make sure you have "speaker view" showing so you can see the slides and not the individual boxes of the participants. #schcom0811 kindergarten room shown, previously showed an FHS room.on this slide

  • Time on learning, more expected in Sept than was done in March. Teachers teaching from classrooms to enable collaboration among as well as do the health protocol daily in advance of in person learning. #schcom0811

  • Attendance taken either daily or period by period, instructional work to be graded, some visits planned to the classroom (a reverse field trip) #schcom0811 high needs students priority for in person learning.

  • Shannon Barca, principal at Parmenter, provides insights into elementary details. #schcom0811 consistent lunch time planned to enable all at remote to eat together (in person normally would go at different times grade by grade)

  • Middle school insights, Becky Motte from Horace Mann #schcom0811

  • Brief interruption from someone who didn't realize they were not muted, in speaker view you broadcast to interrupt the meeting and advertise who you are at the same time. Just in case you didn't know #schcom0811 mute is good!

  • Principal Hanna from FHS mentions the over 900 sessions in a normal FHS schedule. (By the way, did you catch his interview last week? No, check on ) #schcom0811 ECDC will be in person with about 5-6 students with special needs/class along with peers

  • Paula Marano provides update on the special education provided either  way in person, remote, or out of district #schcom0811 days of learning will line up, minutes may not (per IEP)

  • Quick update, over 310 now, 14 on live stream. #schcom0811

  • Transition to hybrid model for grades 2 and up at natural break points for both students and teachers benefits #schcom0811 hybrid for elem/middle aaxbb hence two cohorts. In FHS, due to size restriction of rooms there, they would be 25% each group

  • Moving to hybrid takes into account the teachers coming from areas in metro Boston as well as metro Providence, as well as franklin and surrounding Communities. #schcom0811 all models provide challenges.

  • Awaiting guidance from State on sports #schcom0811 MIAA has not updated in awhile and they also are waiting for state guidance

  • Some folks in the Council chambers for this meeting, some Committee members remote, #schcom0811

  • HVAC already set for occupancy, would need to increase air flow, being worked, contractor working in prep for Sep #schcom0811 possible installation of ultra Violet light to be added, priority for hybrid first areas Asst Superintendent Dr Joyce Edwards provides updates on the first 10 days what the teachers would do to prepare for remote learning, whether fully remote or hybrid #schcom0811

  • Asst Superintendent Lucas Giguere provides updates on SEL prep in the first 10 days, will be incorporating the learning from spring time, consistency needed, plan evolving to include #schcom0811

  • Part of task force working on approach to support students and staff, another survey coming to look for needs to address. #schcom0811 Marano provides updates on these points

  • Additional Chromebooks ordered, not yet delivered, looking into. #schcom0811 FHS Chromebooks were received along with the Senior class hand me downs. Adding bandwidth to allow for live Instruction

  • Business manager Miriam Goodman adds reminder on funding for school lunches being provided during summer, families can take advantage of this #schcom0811 some polices will need to be adjusted for the pandemic and remote learning situations

  • Proposed calendar for 2020-2021 on agenda for #schcom0811 to review and vote on. Pending vote, plan will go to DESE on Friday. Planning will continue. Communications to be executed to spread word on what is happening

  • Acknowledged work of the task force, can't thank them enough, meetings T W T for min 2 hours, #schcom0811 Dr Bergen seconds Dr Ahern's comments, thanks for the thoughtful feedback, this is complex

  • Starting around with #schcom811 questions, Elise Stokes starts.

  • Close to 100 k-5 students of teachers either in Franklin or outside, lifelong learning looking at this, may not be able to service all. #schcom0811 solutions not likely an option initially, more details to come, trying to work things out

  • Q on FHS last in priority? Not really it made sense to bring them at the marking period and that is how it fell. Q on when student assignments will be sent out? I.e. cohort assignment, info being gathered. It will be hard to accommodate request siblings 1st #schcom0811

  • Q still Aug 31? The date is likely to be changed for when the payment is expected pending decision tonight. Q  no support for only 50% of teachers rumored to be returning either in person or remote; not officially seeing #s like that, will need some but not 50% #schcom0811

  • If parents do want to go private school or home school, and leave district, please contact your principal or the central office so it can help with the planning for those staying in district. #schcom0811

  • Being mindful of screen time, intending to include low tech activities along with the screen time breaks, should be for all grades not just lower grades; reminder that this time the schools are open (they weren't in March) #schcom0811

  • What is date for teacher notifications? Tough question to answer as it is governed by other legalities, it is a fluid and rolling process, folks situations will change, and we have to accommodate #schcom0811

  • Q how will the additional support be provided, will they be fully used either remote or hybrid? Yes for the special need support, they will be more needed to help get back to a routine. Instructional specialist and coaches, would be full time #schcom0811

  • The math and literacy specialist would be full time to help assess where students are and then address the gaps as required, either with the student directly or support the teacher as needed #schcom0811

  • Q on busing? Savings or costs for parents? In process of working with bus contractor, with increased sanitization, reduced schedules, complex process but being negotiated. #schcom0811

  • Tim reads some of the 'spread kindness like confetti' in an interesting way to highlight the changes. (I hope the kids were not listening). Yes, everything changes when we go back, will need to find new ways #schcom0811

  • Tim observed that lots of folks tend to find things that help their point often ignoring an other point of view, should recognize different POV, #schcom0811

  • Approx less than 100 students in the high needs coming in for 1st phase, spread across buildings, state released guidance today for markers, Q on how to utilize facilities MS and FHS before they hit dates #schcom0811

  • Q on miscommunication, not from district may be due to changing guidance and adjusting to the changes, most of the time is quiet but July has been very busy, regroup being retooled (student population) #schcom0811 also doing radio shows to provide updates!

  • Dr Bergen adds that the Y is expanding their day care offering in additional sites in and around town, Recreation is also looking at outdoor activities. #schcom0811 Q on the rapid testing that Gov Baker has touted, not known now. No timeline on HVAC changes yet

  • Q on changes from remote to hybrid, vice versa, would like several weeks notice. #schcom0811 would like vote on plan, it will be a living doc, anything large SchCom would be informed before, there would be regular SchCom meetings to help keep informed

  • Clarification Q on staff cleaning responsibility, no, the custodians will do the cleaning multiple times a day. 

  • Health Director Cathleen Liberty has been on the task force and provided guidance along the way. #schcom0811

  • Students would be masked on bus, windows open except in most inclement weather, some routes would be shortened to reduce time on bus #schcom0811 Q outside is impractical for chorus and band for our New England weather, lessons would occur in remote settings

  • Lisa Trainor provides update on intersection of family first act and FMLA, complicated to be sure but we need to be responsive. Q can they move back and forth between remote and hybrid? Hasn't been part of conversation but can be considered. #schcom0811

  • Q raised by ECDC faculty to service IEP and peers, how to move about the building safely with PPE, much hasn't been said about us, concerned  that the decision doesn't reflect the situation #schcom0811 yes, the plan is biased on K-12 focus and we acknowledge that

  • Special training on PPE would be provided was acknowledged earlier but not specifically addressed the ECDC world. The students will require us to be closer to them, we are working to train our staff, it is process #schcom0811 would be over 50 in the school but not in a room

  • Various POV from parents and Community, valid, individual and no good answers would work for all. Wish the #Schcom0811 well with whatever decision they make. "We have ways to help folks come back from trauma, we do not have ways to have folks come back from death"

  • Donna Grady: not an easy decision for any of us, none are easy, educators will go above and beyond, it will look different this fall, we want what's best for your children, #schcom0811

  • Motion (D'Angelo) to separate plan from remote approach as two separate votes, not seconded: hence falls aside

  • motion to accept plan as discussed 6 for 1 abstain (D'Angelo) ) vote passes 6-0-1 #schcom0811

  • Motion to accept revised schedule #schcom0811 via roll call 7-0

  • Motion to accept policy from second reading, #schcom0811 via roll call 7-0

  • Moving to next meeting updates: likely updates on re-opening, policy changes per re-opening as discussed, Pfeffer objects to throwing away books (even outdated) when they could go elsewhere. #schcom0811

  • This was a question on the consent agenda which is usually is done in a block, adjustment to minutes of first set , motion to accept consent with adjusted mins. Passed 7-0 #schcom0811 via roll call

  • Motion to go to executive session to return to open session, passed 7-0 #schcom0811

  • #schcom0811 may be coming back after the executive session but sorry, that's all for me tonight. Catch you all next time!

Photos shared on Twitter for this thread can be found in one album

No comments:

Post a Comment