Showing posts with label recognition. Show all posts
Showing posts with label recognition. Show all posts

Saturday, December 11, 2021

Franklin, MA: School Committee - Meeting Agenda - Dec 14, 2021

School Committee Meeting
Municipal Building - Council Chambers 
(Virtual Link in Agenda)

Call to Order

Pledge of Allegiance
Moment of Silence

I. Routine Business
A. Review of Agenda
B. Citizen’s Comments
In the spirit of open communication, “the Committee will hold a public participation segment (also called Citizen’s Comments) about matters not related to an agenda item at the beginning of each regular School Committee meeting. The Committee will listen to, but not respond to any comment made…. A Committee member may add an agenda item to a future meeting as a result of a citizen comment…. The Committee will hear public comments related to an agenda item when the Chair deems appropriate during the Committee meeting. Topics for discussion during the meeting must be limited to those items listed on the Committee meeting agenda for that evening…. ” - from Policy  BEDH

C. FHS Student Representative Comments
D. Superintendent’s Report

II. Guests/Presentations
A. Recognition of recent School Committee Members – Dr. Ahern

B. Lifelong Learning Presentation – Pattie Gay, Interim Director of Lifelong Learning

III. Discussion/Action Items 
A. Dissolve Transportation Sub Committee
I recommend dissolving the Transportation Sub Committee as discussed.
B. DECA Field Trip for State Competition
I recommend approval of the request of Miguel Carmo to take students to the
DECA State Competition in Boston, MA from March 10-12, 2022 as detailed.
C. New York City Trip
I recommend approval of the request of Paul Cadenhead and Miguel Carmo to
take NBHS (National Business Honor Society) students to NY City on April 9, 2022
to visit the Stock Exchange, Wall Street and the World Trade Center as detailed.

IV. Discussion Only Items
A. 2022-2023 School Committee Meeting Schedule - DRAFT

V. Information Matters
A. School Committee Sub-Committee Reports (e.g. Supt. Evaluation, Budget,
Community Relations/Public Schools Advocacy, Policy, Transportation)
B. School Committee Liaison Reports (e.g. Joint PCC, Substance Abuse Task Force,
School Wellness Advisory Council, SEPAC, DEI Committee)

VI. New Business
A. To discuss any future agenda items

VII. Consent Agenda
A. Approval of Minutes
I recommend approval of the minutes from the November 23, 2021 School
Committee meeting as detailed.
B. Athletics Gift
I recommend acceptance of a check for $33.00 from Campus Box Media for
Supplemental Supplies for the Athletics Department as detailed.
C. Districtwide Gift
I recommend acceptance of a check for $295.00 from BJ’s Wholesale Club for
in-house enrichment districtwide as detailed.
D. Jacqueline A Schaeffer Theatre Arts Scholarship
I recommend acceptance of a check for $250.00 from Sean Jobin for the
aforementioned FHS scholarship as detailed.
E. Vincent & Alma DeBaggis Scholarship
I recommend acceptance of a check for $1,000.00 from Roberta Trahan for the
aforementioned FHS scholarship as detailed.

VIII. Payment of Bills Ms. Spencer

IX. Payroll Ms. Stokes

X. Executive Session
a. Pursuant to M.G.L. c. 30A §21(a)(2) to conduct collective bargaining with nonunion personnel as an open meeting may have a detrimental effect on the bargaining position of the School Committee and the Chair so declares.
XI. Adjournment 

Agenda doc -> 

Franklin, MA: School Committee - Meeting Agenda -  Dec 14, 2021
Franklin, MA: School Committee - Meeting Agenda -  Dec 14, 2021

Wednesday, November 3, 2021

New York Times: "Facebook, Citing Societal Concerns, Plans to Shut Down Facial Recognition System"

"Facebook plans to shut down its decade-old facial recognition system this month, deleting the face scan data of more than one billion users and effectively eliminating a feature that has fueled privacy concerns, government investigations, a class-action lawsuit and regulatory woes.

Jerome Pesenti, vice president of artificial intelligence at Meta, Facebook’s newly named parent company, said in a blog post on Tuesday that the social network was making the change because of “many concerns about the place of facial recognition technology in society.” He added that the company still saw the software as a powerful tool, but “every new technology brings with it potential for both benefit and concern, and we want to find the right balance.”

The decision shutters a feature that was introduced in December 2010 so that Facebook users could save time. The facial-recognition software automatically identified people who appeared in users’ digital photo albums and suggested users “tag” them all with a click, linking their accounts to the images. Facebook now has built one of the largest repositories of digital photos in the world, partly thanks to this software."
Continue reading the article online. (Subscription maybe required)

Facebook is shuttering a feature, introduced in December 2010, that automatically identified people who appeared in users’ digital photo albums.Credit...Carlos Barria/Reuters
Facebook is shuttering a feature, introduced in December 2010, that automatically identified people who appeared in users’ digital photo albums. Credit...Carlos Barria/Reuters

Thursday, October 28, 2021

Recap: School Committee meeting interrupted by audience; MASC resolutions discussed, mask policy approved, Executive Session closed meeting

Quick Recap:
  • The FHS student updates were interrupted by some members of the audience, a shouting match ensued, and a break in the meeting was gaveled by the Chair
  • As the meeting back to business, they heard a presentation from the Science National Honor Society, status update on re-opening, and the Oct 1 enrollment report (with lots of details) 
  • The MASC resolutions were discussed, and while most passed, the exact vote outcome was not clear (all seven members were in the Chambers and roll call was not required)
  • Given the DESE decision to extend the mask policy was announced Tuesday afternoon, the policy proposal had been reworded to provide room for implementation of future changes. The decision to apply for the waiver (as FHS has reached 82% vaccination rate) was approved. The masks don't go away immediately. The next school committee will hear of the proposed implementation plan before it is set in motion. Given what has been happening around with other districts, a cautious approach is quite likely with more of a relaxed implementation after the holidays (assuming the number of COVID cases remains low)
  • Recognition of the three members not returning (they are not running for re-election) was moved from meeting opening to just before the Executive Session. They received a plaque and a token of appreciation
  • The Committee entered executive session not to return to public meeting and the broadcast/live stream ended
As with most meetings in this pandemic period, I took my notes via Twitter during the meeting reporting in real time via the Zoom/live stream 
The Twitter hashtag can be found online  #schcom1026 
Agenda doc ->
Meeting packet folder - >
Photos captured during the meeting and shared via Twitter can be found in one folder
  • Getting ready for live tweeting/ reporting on the Franklin  #schcom1026 meeting
  • Meeting packet folder contains agenda doc, connection info, and anything else released 4 this meeting. Superintendent's report gets added on Weds… #schcom1026
  • In a time warp? #schcom10126 we'll find out soon…
  • Something of a time warp in that the live stream started before some folks were allowed into the Zoom session (at least me) #schcom1026
  • Motion to move the recognition of departing members to end of meeting, moved, seconded, (to conclude all business) before executive session #schcom1026 passes (likely 7-0; to be confirmed as members are viewed)
Citizen Comments
  • Citizen comment on 'protected students' who is  who determines? Shouldn't be a division looking for definition. #schcom1026 
  • Husband of candidate Videra reads the section left out of the statement from the candidate forum quote from The Bluest Eye by Toni Morrison
  • Parent with comment on student lunch time and recess time, Franklin has done nothing in the 8 years she has been complaining about, then shifts to sex talk for 9 year olds, "the hate you give" being read earlier than recommended #schcom1026
  • Parent speaking on the DESE extension and lack of initiative for FPS to go on their own, #schcom1026 no survey done of parents to see where they fall on this 
  • Parent talking about possible coercion for vaccine to kids as discussed by SchCom at prior meeting
  • Resident complains about the lack of Franklin TV for making the #SchCom1026 videos available.
  • FHS students plugging production of "Mamma Mia" Nov 12-13; trunk or treat this weekend in FHS parking lot; National Honor society project to run theater clinic for elementary students; #schcom1026 Medway doing regular testing in lieu of masks
  • FHS seniors coming back and now starting to feel stress as college apps are being done, hard transition; enforcing masks, students not following be considerate of those around and their well-being #schcom1026
  • Spirit week, include photos to add soul to the school, gym decorated, corner colors by class, cabaret last week, Dalton award from Globe for sports, #schcom1026 student responds to protected student question, everyone is protected
  • Meeting takes a break as parent objects to FHS student comment on harassment and voices are raised #schcom1026
  • Chair gaveled for break after request for silence was not adhered to, zoom muted, live stream audio switch to radio. Assume it will come back some time #schcom1026
  • Someone on Zoom complaining about violating open meeting, actually no. Once gaveled for a break, they are not in an official meeting, when they gavel back the meeting will resume. #schcom1026
  • Gaveling back to order. #schcom1026
  • Everyone was respectful in their comments, that same respect should be accorded the FHS students. #schcom1026
Superintendent Report
  • Next up Superintendent Report, Professional development schedule for Nov 2; congrats to FHS for Dalton award, leaving room for parking at the gym for election #schcom1026 FDA working towards making vaccine available when approved in a local clinic
  • With round of committee option to comment or question the report, confirms that all seven are indeed in the Chambers this evening #schcom1026
FHS Science National Honor Society
  • FHS students presenting on national honor society for science #schcom1026
  • Screen grabs on science nights conducted by group pre-COVID #schcom1026
  • YouTube channel created during COVID to share the experiments #schcom1026
  • Working with elementary school to develop a science project for their curriculum #schcom1026 ad-hoc comments on promotion of DEI setting a good role model for younger students given tonight's events
MASC resolutions
  • Next up discussion action item; MASC resolutions for delegate representation at conf next week, motion on resolution 1  #schcom1026 vote not clear but would pass (Pfeffer no, someone else no, possible abstain also)
  • MASC resolution 2 Pfeffer also speaks to no on this, (the resolution would enable MASC to lobby on our behalf for these) #schcom1026 vote likely 6-1 
  • Resolution 3 - Pfeffer also speaks to no, Keenan where is the prioritization on these? How does that come to play? Superintendent adds some clarification around funding and priorities and funding sources, res 4 would require time on learning change for recess #schcom1026  Vote on res 3, likely 6-1 
  • #schcom1026 resolution 4 Pfeffer also speaks to no due to her lack of understanding of the wording; vote likely 6-1 
  • Resolution 5 - Pfeffer likes this one! Zero tolerance policy should be avoided whenever possible, use restorative practice, vote 7-0
  • Resolution 6 an alternative to MCAS, vote 7-0
  • Resolution 7 SchComm and receivership; Pfeffer speaks to no on this (?) Discussion on this as intending to restoration of local control - vote 6-1 likely #schcom1026
  • Resolution 8 - Pfeffer too altruistic statement, chances of getting in her opinion slim to none, voting no; vote hard to say but likely not passed
  • Resolution 9 - voting 6-1 #schcom1026
Policy discussion/approvals
New business / recognition
  • New business; Nov 9, organization meeting, vote on leadership and subcommittees; MCAS update later in Nov, update on waiver and next steps for facial covering implementation (assuming waiver accepted) #schcom1026 consent agenda approved, passes 7-0
  • Recognition of departing #schcom1026 members, last two years were most challenging, pandemic, budget, facility analysis; Keenan first, Pfeffer next, Bergen next
  • Photos to be added, plaque, token of appreciation given to the three members in recognition #schcom1026
  • Keenan: Appreciate the patience, we haven't always agreed but is has been an honor and a privilege, it takes a lot to whomever is elected, keep it civil and kind, #schcom1026 "it is easier to listen the more civil and kind it is"
  • Pfeffer: to do this properly we need to ask questions, examine the costs and manpower, how does the school get money? how does the town get money? New members should be given a copy of Roberts Rules of Order #schcom1026
  • Bergen: thanks to the community for the honor of serving, thanks for your patience in the world of Zoom, tech is not one of my strengths; showed concern for staff as well as the students; wrote a few closing remarks - the Portrait of a Graduate is an impressive accomplishment
  • Schools and town services are affected by the budget shortfall it is up to the residents to decide, we provide an objective transparent view of the budget and issues, legislative forums among others outreach efforts #schcom1026
  • Rigorous academic education as well as physical emotional well-being, what Horace Mann knew, opioid problem hasn't gone away, emotional health issues are growing around us, a community issue, #schcom1026 we need to understand the toll it takes on us and the children
  • In my time, 9 superintendents, never had one dealt with the challenges that Dr Ahern has in her term, it has not been done by her alone, along with her central office staff and the principals across the district, the whole staff bus drivers, custodians, etc. #schcom1026
  • Thanks to Chris Sterns and Franklin TV for making the meetings happen, thanks, Horace Mann would be proud of us today. #schcom1026 
  • MJ interjects to give thanks, Judy jokes that she'll go to the Planning Board next. MJ acknowledges knowing Dr Bergen and working with her
Executive session / not to return to open meeting
  • Motion to enter executive session, not to return to open meeting, to discuss negotiation and legal issues Via roll call passes 7-0
  • That's all for tonight (yup, late to this, what a night!) #schcom1026
  • Audio recording of meeting to be available in couple of days

FHS Science National Honor Society provides update
FHS Science National Honor Society provides update

Friday, July 23, 2021

Recap: Town Council approves Dean alcohol license and executes right of first refusal for Maple Hill open space

Quick Recap:
  • The Town Council recognized two retirees Patti Wyllie, Treasurer-Collector's Department and Tommy Grundstrom, DPW and Ndoumbe Ndoye, Franklin High School, Commonwealth Heroines Award
  • Reconsideration of the alcohol license for Dean College per their ABCC appeal resulted in approval by a 7-2 vote
  • The right of first refusal for the Maple Hill property was funded and approved by a unanimous 9-0 vote (via roll call). This is the first time the time has accepted its right of first refusal as it was in position to do so with the funds from the Pond St sale ($1.6M) and use of the Community Preservation Act funds now available. It will take time to complete the purchase, then the planning for trails, access parking, etc. can begin. Funding for this improvement work remains to be determined.
  • Town Administrator contract approved with minor revisions to extend for 5 years (from 3), increase aligned with that of other town employee commitments, and formalized the annual review with an ad-hoc subcommittee to provide a report to the full Town Council.


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  #tc0721 

Photos captured during the meeting and shared via Twitter can be found in one album


Citizens comments
  • Citizens comments, Dale Kurtz announcement of purple heart day, Aug 7, recognition of 18 recipients. Contact veterans office to confirm participation. Monument repair project starting.
  • Kerri Bertone treasurer collector announcing paperless billing option, also waiving ACH charge for electronic payments. #tc0721
Approval of minutes
  • Motion to approve mins of 5/26 meeting; 5/27 minutes approved also by voice vote; June 9 meeting mins, Jun 23 minutes, approved also via voice vote - 2 abstentions for last vote #tc0721
  • Patti Wyllie recognized at retirement after 33 years of service to Town of Franklin #tc0721
  • Tommy Grundstrom, DPW sewer dept now retiring after 26 years, #tc0721
  • Ndumbe Ndoye, recognition for her selection as a commonwealth heroine. #tc0721
  • Public hearing opened for bylaw amendment on tasting rooms, no Public step to comment, EDC subcommittee chair Hamblen speaks for, hearing closes ... up for vote later in meeting #tc0721
Dean College all alcohol license
  • Next up, dean college alcohol license up for approval after denial last year by council. ABCC determined no legal reason for denial. Back for approval... #tc0721 
  • If TC does deny again, the applicant could appeal, would be heard by superior court which would review the hearing by the Council. Not a public hearing, applicants can respond to questions clarification on points. Students would not be tending bar, only Sodexo employees #tc0721
  • Councilor Chandler pulled records of last 4 years of police incidents. College may not notify of all incidents, can be handled internally, major ones or per student request do get reported. Alcohol events are well managed by college personnel and Sodexo tip certified #tc0721
  • Chandler concerned with 'capricious' comment by ABCC. Council does have broad authority, the applicant does have broad authority. "It is not that simple" #tc0721
  • Bissanti Council should not be bullied by ABCC or threat of lawsuit. Dellorco how much have we spent? Just over $2k to defend the community for the prior decision. Jones adds that this is a simplification of the 30 one day licenses with this they did have no incidents #tc0721
  • Mercer important to clarify the license for events, no a pub open in the campus center, faculty, college business. #tc0721 Cerel "do you want to take their advice or not?" Hellen State ABCC acts to provide guidance and oversight on the legality of the process.
  • Events only license not a liquor license? Kelly - Dean needs to do better community outreach on any number of the other issues, parking etc. #tc0721 a further amendment to add a condition of req 21+ to serve at the events. Bissanti calls this a recipe for disaster
  • Exception made for citizen comment which is not part of the public hearing. Another citizen complaining about the student behavior as neighbors. #tc0721
  • Confusion between what is allowed per license for the special events vs. general alcohol already on campus from other Franklin establishments. This license doesn't allow for those type purchases. #tc0721
  • Roll call vote: Chandler, Bissanti no, all other 7 Councilors voted to approve. 7-2 vote, it passes. #tc0721
Legislation for Action
Maple Hill right of first refusal
Town Administrator report
  • Many happy people out there voted for this historic vote. #tc0721 TA Hellen report, grant for $20k for complete streets for chairs, lighting, barriers for outdoor dining downtown. Thanks to the 4th of July committee for their work. Quiet zone study money rec'd.
  • Thanks to Chrissy Welton for her work, she is moving to FL, best wishes. #tc0721 Dean Ave parking for future agenda. Thanks to those who voted for CPA, put us position to make the purchase of Maple Hill. Last word "awesome" for Chrissy. Dean relationship does need to improve
  • #tc0721 thanks to prior Councils for identifying the Maple Hill space and helping to work towards the purchase today. Executive session, will return to open session, subject to what happens for final adjournment. Negotiate with TA, motion and 2nd passes via roll 9-0
Executive session

Return to open session

  • Council returns to open session, contract for Jamie, FY 22 same salary (2% COLA) no new financial commitments, removes auto increases, replaced by increase inline with other municipal employees, also reqs ad hoc sub comm to do review and bring to full council. #tc0721
  • No comments on new contract, motion to approve, passes 9-0 Motion to adjourn, passes 9-0 #tc0721

Audio recording of meeting to be available in couple of days 

Dean College officials answering questions during the alcohol license discussion
Dean College officials answering questions during the alcohol license discussion

Monday, June 28, 2021

FM #574 - Town Council Quarterbacking with Tom Mercer - 06/24/21 (audio)

FM #574 = This is the Franklin Matters radio show, number 574 in the series. 

This shares my conversation with Town Council Chair Tom Mercer. This is one of a series of conversations meant to provide a recap of the prior Council meeting. Akin to one of the many sports post-game analysis broadcasts we are familiar with in New England,  this would be a discussion focused on the Franklin Town Council meeting: 

  • ok, what just happened? 

  • What does it mean for Franklin residents and taxpayers?

We cover the following key topics


a. Police Department Recognition: Patrol Officer David Mellor

b. Fire & Police Department Recognition: Winter Street Incident



a. Annual Reappointments


· S&J Restaurant, LLC d/b/a Sierra’s Brick Oven Pizza & Pub, New Common Victualer All Alcohol License and Approval of Manager, located at 648 Old West Central Street, Franklin, MA 02038.

· Proof Restaurant, LLC d/b/a Proof, New Common Victualer All Alcohol License and Approval of Manager, located at 862 West Central Street, 2nd Floor, Franklin, MA 02038. 



Open Meeting Law (OML) Complaint from Patrick Higgins: Failure to approve Town Council meeting minutes in a timely manner. 



Resolution 21-33: Expenditure - Recreation Department Expenses, Fletcher Fund (Motion to Approve Resolution 21-33 - Majority Vote)


Resolution 21-34: Appropriation - Franklin Downtown Zoning and Marketing Capital Account (Motion to Approve Resolution 21-34 - Majority Vote)


Resolution 21-35: FY21 Appropriation Transfers (Motion to Approve Resolution 21-35 - Majority Vote)


Resolution 21-37: Termination of the Veteran’s Services Agreement (Motion to Approve Resolution 21-37 Majority Vote)


Zoning Bylaw Amendment 21-874: Amendment to CH. 185 Section 21 Parking, Loading, and Driveway Requirements - Referral to the Planning Board (Motion to Refer Bylaw Amendment 21-874 to the Planning Board - Majority Vote)

The show notes include links to the meeting agenda and associated documents.

Our conversation runs about 31 minutes, so let’s listen in to my quarterbacking session with Tom Mercer.

Audio file =>


Franklin Community Profile  =>


Agenda folder ->


Agenda doc (including connection info) ->

My notes from the meeting


We are now producing this in collaboration with Franklin.TV and Franklin Public Radio ( or 102.9 on the Franklin area radio dial. 

This podcast is my public service effort for Franklin but we can't do it alone. We can always use your help.


How can you help?

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The music for the intro and exit was provided by Michael Clark and the group "East of Shirley". The piece is titled "Ernesto, manana"  c. Michael Clark & Tintype Tunes, 2008 and used with their permission.

I hope you enjoy!


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Town Council Quarterbacking with Tom Mercer - 06/24/21
Town Council Quarterbacking with Tom Mercer - 06/24/21