Friday, December 17, 2021

Recap: School Committee hears Lifelong Learning update, plans for FHS masking; approved FHS business trips

Quick Recap:
  • Citizen commenters returned after a brief hiatus; one told of a sad story of her student being punished for something the IEP was supposed to be addressing; another advocated for inclusion of Diwali on the list of recognized religious holidays
  • Superintendent's report covered scenario if cases continued to rise, how they would revert to the face required process; communications late Wednesday did revert policy on masks back to being required as case counts rose about 4% positivity
  • Recognition of former SchComm member MJ Scofield; she had not been recognized earlier as she was running again and was not successful. She has long been an advocate and volunteer for schools and sports with a long list of accomplishments
  • Lifelong Learning presented an overview on their programs which are almost back to normal. They had been significantly affected by the pandemic. Even the summer programs had been adjusted for COVID precautions as opposed to the summer of 2020 when they were simply not held
  • two trips were approved for FHS DECA students and National Business Honors students
As with most meetings in this pandemic period, I took my notes via Twitter while I attended the meeting in the Council Chamber. 

The Twitter hashtag #schcom1214  can be found online. The thread begins with 


Citizen Comments
  • citizen comment; request for sex ed documentation but hadn't received response; request left with Chair; parent with student issue (speaking rapidly and hard to understand) #schcom1214 KP Sompally requests to have consideration to celebrate Diwali within the district
  • citizen comment; M Benson speaking on mask policy at FHS; claiming contradiction among DESE and DPH statements; #schcom1214
FHS student updates
  • FHS student update from R Chaudhury, provides multiple items - spirit week, theater auditions, middle sch auditions too; raffle calendar fund raiser; online open through Dec 31; sports news - FHS did beat KP on Thanksgiving; Unified Basketball going to FL; cheerleaders won D1;
  • action today on basketball courts; masks so far going well; looking forward to break; #schcom1214
Superintendents Report
  • superintendents report; PD last week (12/10) at building level; prof learning communities; elementary focused on assessment; middle multi-tier system of support; FHS worked on curriculum development; congrats to Unified Basketball team; traveling in Jun '22 #schcom1214
  • Congrats to Paula Lupien, named MIAA D1 gymnastics coach of the year; #schcom1214; shifting to FHS mask policy implementation - 75% of students/40% of faculty were choosing to unmask; case numbers are climbing and keep watching; masks will busing (Federal mandate)
  • changing definition of close contact to 6' (from 3'); no change to test/stay; can't test vaccinated students per DESE; #schcom1214 positivity 3.27% in Franklin (less than the 4 at benchmark); numbers updated Thursday; if over 4, would have a decision for the following Monday
  • apprehensive around cases and numbers; chart shared with the updated numbers (weekly from DPH); 129 students in quarantine (largest in while); published on Monday; to be included in District newsletter on Weds #schcom1214
  • if over 4 on Thursday, encouraged to mask on Fri but req'd for Monday; suggestion to reverse order of the info to put the newest on top; shoutout to music boosters, etc. in person concerts this month, nice way to celebrate the season; #schcom1214
Recognition of MJ Scofield
  • recognition of MJ Scofield former member of #SchCom1214 multiple policy updated under her leadership of Policy subcom; Keller/Sullivan building project in prior period of terms; MJ speaking, acknowledges being awkward; appreciates the free time; overtime 5 superintendents …
  • worked toward a common goal, could tell stories, but won't; negotiation sessions; pre-interest based bargaining did go long; #schcom1214 "kids always come first", keep advised of what Town Council and other board do; you're responsible for quality of ed for all students
  • Chair Spencer acknowledges the hard work and making a world of difference; an amazing mentor; a well of historical knowledge #schcom1214
Lifelong Learning Presentation
  • Lifelong Learning Presentation – Pattie Gay, Interim Director of Lifelong Learning Institute presentation #schcom1214 off rhythm due to the pandemic; stabilizing the dept and building back
  • presentation copy to follow along as req'd -> #schcom1214
  • Solutions - for K through 5th grade, at each elementary school; Lifelong Community Learning - resource/programs for all ages; Kid's Corner - students K-8; music academy for all ages #schcom1214
  • Summer programs were offered in limited capacity for 2021; high school experience offered in one day versions for incoming 9th and those in 10th who missed prior year; #schcom1214 anticipating return to full programing in summer of 2022; summer registration opens Feb 1, 2022
  • programs aligned with district improvement plans; #schcom1214 thanks to all who helped support our program around the District/Town. Shout out to the Solutions ladies who helped raise my kids; there are great offerings in the brochure, check it out; you can meet other folks
  • STEM and Math academy are complimentary to what is taught in school, particular during the summer, where usually regular teachers are the instructors; the college essay course is popular and helps to jump start the seniors; #schcom1214
  • Lifelong Learning has been able to develop programs (i.e. essay and common app) to help address identified needs of the students and community #schcom1214
  • great to be able to be back in person, enables real time opportunities to get feedback; courses do have an evaluation sheet at the end of each course; info reviewed and incorporated as needed; #schcom1214
Discussion Action Items
Discussion only item
  • Discussion only item -  draft SchCom meeting calendar for planning/review #schcom1214 most normal 2 mtgs/month with minor exceptions
  • Info matters - Budget meeting Thu - 12/16 at 7:30; community relations TBD; Joint PCC meeting today; COVID concerns discussed; pilot of Remington with Unlikely Story for book fair, next meeting Jan 10; SWAC next meeting Jan 4; #schcom1214 plng 4 another …
  • critical conversations event in the Spring - informing parents on how to recognize drug packaging, etc. #schCom1214 DEI cmte met 12/08, visit FPS page (link to be added later) - appointing Elise to SEPAC as rep
  • new business, Jan 11 - Special Ed update; action items related to the budget; re: $93,000 reduction for decision; FY 2022 capital request for SchCom to then go to the Town; #schcom1214
Consent agenda


Audio recording of meeting to be available in couple of days

Citizen comment updates:

School Committee meeting packet folder for Dec 14, 2021 includes the full Superintendent's report   packet folder ->

School Committee hears Lifelong Learning update
School Committee hears Lifelong Learning update

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