Thursday, April 15, 2021

Recap: School Committee approved FY 2022 budget, Parmenter shares highlights, District Improvement Plan status updates

Quick Recap:

  • School Committee approved their FY 2022 budget after receiving word on the amount the Town would fund (which was not discussed in the Joint Budget meeting on Monday)
  • Parmenter Elementary presented their highlights using staff, students and children integrated in the presentation
  • Re-opening fully in person underway, 700+ students remain remote in virtual academy, items being worked here and there; pool testing now Tue/Thu and will continue through end of school year
  • Updates to the District improvement plan #2 ad #3 provided including
    "Marking the moment" of a microaggression as a teachable moment, either on the spot or to return to and address

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  #schcom0413

Photos captured during the meeting and shared via Twitter c be found in one folder
FHS student updates 
  • FHS student updates; return to school went well, issues with lunch being worked, also with hallway and spacing, National Honor Society doing drive for Food Pantry #schcom0413 today's lunch better than Monday. Track tournament this week, theater beginning new production
Superintendent's report
  • Superintendent report, box at municipal bldg for food pantry also. Thanks to staff across district for reopening. #schcom0413 grant received for tilt skillet at FHS kitchen $18k, spring sports sign up underway. April vacation next week, stay safe.
Parmenter presentation
  • Parmenter school presentation next #schcom0413  slides to follow along with
  • Slides #schcom0413
  • Approx 46+ via Zoom, additional via live stream, still others via Comcast/Verizon cable. Google transcripts working on the audio feed provides a nice accessible feature. #schcom0413
  • Love the Maya Angelou quote shared: "Do the best you can until you know better. Then when you know better, do better."  #schcom0413
  • Multiple short videos with student presentation and voices highlighting the work being done #schcom0413
  • Poetry unit in 4th grade, civics in 5th grade,  examples of work being done #schcom0413
  • Over 100 new titles added to the school library, good to see some of the titles shared #schcom0413 at school council level a key Ibram X Kendi text was used
  • #schcom0413 looking for high school or college age mentors for student program, contact the principal if you know of one or more
  • "if you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change" Wayne Dyer - another timely quote  #schcom0413
  • BTW as Committee gets into feedback and questions on the Parmenter presentation Keenan and D'Angelo are present #schcom0413
  • Tiered support common across district albeit named or delivered slightly differently. Also working to align the tiering for content and the tiering for SEL #schcom0413
District improvement plan
  • Moving on the district improvement plan items #2 and #3 #schcom0413
  • Mixing metaphors talking of the compass rose as an anchor #schcom0413
  • "Marking the moment" of a microaggression as a teachable moment, either on the spot or to return to and address #schcom0413
  • #schcom0413 year 1 of 2 year plan  for new social studies framework implementation
  • 8th grade tackling civics this year (interview with soc studies teachers on this shared earlier this school year)
  • Homework monitoring leading into grading revisions. #schcom0413
  • Request for presentation on civics action projects for future meeting "Envisions" not meeting needs, may shift to "Illustrative Math". all programs need supplements, no one program is perfect.
  • Using benchmarks to compare the programs based upon the content taught, also will use MCAS as available. #schcom0413 Next update #3
  • #schcom0413 remote IEP meetings became a reality due to the pandemic. Leveraged every thing that could be used
  • After the Parmenter presentation, dropped down to 26+ via Zoom No questions after the #3 round. #schcom0413  Moving to discussion action and the budget
Discussion action items - FY 2022 budget
  • Did get a 2.2m or 3.4% increase from Town since last time so the previous view of the budget can be reduced to meet the town amount by $700k  #schcom0413 Based upon Gov Baker's numbers, not the House/Senate agreement to provide more than the Governor provided
  • Revised budget pages
  • #schcom0413  How can we prepay from this year? Favorable amounts in budget this year; subs in particular. There are fewer positions in the budget already
  • #schcom0413 the gap has been covered in part by COVID funds helping to offset some expense amount. Chair Bergen providing historical background on budget over the years. Two key reasons: 2.5% restriction placed 40+ years ago things cost more each year than that
  • #schcom0413 1) apples to oranges comparison to compare schools to police/fire. We can only spend what we collect. 2) Special ed is too much. We need to provide for them until they are 22. 3) we are competing for teachers and not overpaying.
  • Ready to vote on the recommendation; motion and second, vote via roll call passes 6-1 (Pfeiffer no) #schcom0413
  • Motion and second on policy adoption … #schcom0413 vote via roll call 7-0
Reopening update
  • Reopening update
  • 738 virtual only across district per family choice, metrics in packet, pool testing Tues/Thur with students back #schcom0413 follow guidelines please, others schools have gone remote temp due to exposure  Will continue pool testing thru end of year, monitoring activity closely
  • #schcom0413 keeping in mind recruiting; nurses, substitutes, etc. Appreciate flexibility in the community and staff, not all staff is vaccinated yet. 3rd round of stimulus expected in May
  • #schcom0413 if some purifiers are extra can they be used elsewhere? Any parent concerns, should be addressed to the schools directly. No Community comments, questions.
  • Joint budget subcomm yesterday. Community relations meeting Apr 28  Policy - mtg 4/29; SWAC update in newsletter this week, last meeting in May. Summer workshop on goals, evaluation anyone for an ad-hoc Committee for that
  • #schcom0413 Calendar for next meeting, diversity awareness, Remington, draft SchCom calendar for next year
Consent Agenda
  • Consent agenda - recommend approval, motion and second, passes  7-0 via roll call #schcom0413
  • Motion to enter executive session and not to return to public, motion and second, passes via roll call 7-0
  • That's all for tonight, catch you next time!


Recap: School Committee approved FY 2022 budget, Parmenter shares highlights, District Improvement Plan status updates
Recap: School Committee approved FY 2022 budget, Parmenter shares highlights, District Improvement Plan status updates

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