Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Live reporting - 5 minute recess

5 minute recess to allow the principals to clear the room and the remainder of the meeting to continue

Franklin, MA

Live reporting - Middle Schools/ High School

continuing the

2. Guests/Presentations
a. School Handbooks - Middle School Principals

similar updates, effort to work together on getting the handbooks more user friendly and equitable
recognizing that going green has been bringing good benefits, not just financially

There are very much consistent with quality handbooks that you would see anywhere else


Derek Folan, Asst Principal, representing the High School

This year was much more of a tune up for the handbook
Kept notes during the year on parent questions and from other events that occurred during the year
Change to more explicit language to help explain the policy

College visits
verbal request before May 1 okay, post May 1 - requires Asst Principal approval
found a few students making college visits after they had already committed to a college

when the number is exceeded per term, the student is in jeopardy of loosing credit for that course that term
Lays out the what the guidance and appeal process is
going to use Plato an online tool for credit recovery of classes missed to earn credit back
if the student doesn't pass the Plato option, then the student would have to re-take the course
Plato covers the core courses (math science, etc.) other courses could be designed and added by the teachers

Data on class cutting jumped dramatically, used social suspension as required

Dismissals from school
nothing new here, some pieces made more explicit for parents.

Per notes from the year, added cheat sheets, notes, etc.

Q - Cafasso - "What is unauthorized collaboration on an assignment?" can you give an example
This came from a specific instance, a collaborative project worked together on the data but the report had to be individually written.

Q - Cafasso - how do you define unauthorized use of computers?
The students were to research and provide definitions and terms on their own

Q - Cafasso - Do you use a scanning tool to find plagiarism?
Yes, "Turn it in dot com. Primarily to scan the English writing projects.

Q - Cafasso - Do you think there is
We try to teach them to use these devices responsibly. Cell phone use policy changes worked nicely.

Academic Assistance
moving the tutoring to the tech center to make it more visible

Due Process Rights and Procedures
this change was done across the board in the district based upon advice from the school district's Attorney
teachers can authorize use of devices for educational purposes after conversation with an Asst Principal; the conversation is more to alert the Asst Principal into the specific and accepted use of such devices and circumstances

high school used the middle school template for the bullying/cyberbullying

Q - Cafasso - Can we get a full and finished copy?
Yes, that would be easy.

Sabolinski - at the next meeting you'll be asked to vote to accept these handbooks as part of the action items
I'd like to compliment the high school, they are getting away from punitive measures and they are making progress, student dropouts are down, student discipline is down, they are helping to form young adults to make good choices.

Add the requirement for a "Constitution Day" to the handbooks

Franklin, MA

Live reporting - Elementary principals

2. Guests/Presentations
a. School Handbooks - Principals

Sally Winslow - provided an overview on handbooks
All the Elementary school principals, and Karen Seyfried (ECDC)

Statement in five major native languages present in the district
Documents to be converted to HTML format which will enable an automatic selection of language
Student friendly language
consistent policies across the schools
policy on early childhood school readiness added
new policy on bullying/cyberbulling added to the handbooks
principals work on this effort to apply it to each of the levels within the district

I reported on my survey results of the handbooks on the websites this afternoon.
They were all found but some were called "family", some "student", some had the school name and one had "parent"
Could there be some consistency in the naming of them; perhaps using the school name to reflect some of the specialization that each does.

Franklin, MA

Live reporting - School Committee

Present: Douglas, Cafasso, Rohrbach, Mullen, Roy, Trahan, Glynn
Absent: none

1. Routine Business

Citizen’s Comments - none

Review of Agenda - no adjustments

Minutes: I recommend approval of the minutes from the Executive Session and Open Session of the July 20, 2010 School Committee Meeting.
Motion to approve, passed 6-0 (1 abstain)
Payment of Bills - Mr. Glynn
Motion to approve, passed 7-0

Payroll - Mrs. Douglas

FHS Student Representatives

Correspondence: none

Franklin, MA

Business After Hours - Aug 11th - Canceled

From the United Regional Chamber of Commerce today, I hear that

Aug. 11 Business After Hours Canceled

Due to circumstances beyond our control, the Franklin Hawthorn Suites has canceled its Business After Hours scheduled for Wed., Aug. 11. We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause. Please consider attending the Aug. 24 Business After Hours at Pleasant Auto Center in Attleboro.

Franklin, MA

Choices - Choices

This is one of those days when you have a choice to make. You can participate in the Franklin Citizens Rail Trail meeting at the Y or participate in the School Committee meeting.

The agenda for the Rail Trail meeting can be found here:

The agenda for the School Committee meeting can be found here:

The District Improvement Plan (on the list for discussion) can be found here:

Your choice!

Franklin, MA

In the News - Price Chopper

He said the store could only be reached by two entrances from Chestnut Ridge Road - one for deliveries and the other for customers. He said they propose to install a traffic light at East Central Street and widen the entrance to Chestnut Ridge to make for easier turns.
Doherty said the building is about 35 feet lower than surrounding homes, and about a dozen 4-foot-high air conditioning units would sit on top of the building in soundproof enclosures. He said already existing evergreen trees would provide a buffer between the store and homes.
He said the developer would also try, during construction, to improve public utilities, like the sewage pumping station and water main.

The saga continues. Read the full story in the Milford Daily News here:

Proposed Price Chopper worries residents

from The Milford Daily News News RSS  

Franklin, MA

In the News - furnaces, St Rocco's

Furnaces to be replaced at low-income housing in Franklin

from The Milford Daily News News RSS 

In Franklin, a taste of heaven

Franklin, MA

Random Smile Project's Fun Runs for Jen Bal set

Sent to you by Steve Sherlock via Google Reader:

via The Milford Daily News News RSS by GateHouse Media, Inc. on 8/9/10

Random Smile Project's "Fun Runs for Jen Bal" benefit road race will be held on Sunday Aug. 22, at Boston Sports Club, 750 Union St., Franklin.

The first race at 9 a.m., will be held for kids. Feature races will be held at 10 a.m., a 5 K Fun Run and the 5 Mile Mount Street Madness race. Register at Active.com.

The family event will include professional timing, runner t-shirts will supplies last, award medals to first and second place in all divisions, race ribbons to all kids participants, post-race refreshments and raffle prizes. Free entry to BSC's campground facilities including ropes course, sad volleyball, basketball, inflatable waterslides and more.

All proceeds to benefit the Jen Ballarino Scholarship Fund and two-weeks at BSC's summer Camp, in Franklin.

Things you can do from here:

You can visit the BSC-Franklin website here to view the schedule of programs available:

Survey reminder

The current survey on the new trash and recycle system is open for your input through Aug 14th.

You can find the survey here:

As of 8/5/10 8:00 PM there were 43 responses.
As of 8/9/10 8:00 PM there were 62 responses.


Franklin, MA

Monday, August 9, 2010

ice cream as 'a treat that's refreshing and new'

At Spruce Pond Creamery's takeout window, Kenneth Josephson ordered two scoops of maple walnut ice cream, the only flavor he's tried for many years.
"I liked maple walnut when I was young. I still like it," said the retired engineer. "If you like something, why change it?"
That might surprise Marc Bluestein, who opened the combination ice cream parlor and organic pizzeria at 370 King St. in Franklin 11 years ago with his brother Gary.
They've prospered by adapting to new nutritional trends by serving a diverse and healthy menu featuring organic pizza and organic beer and all natural ice cream, which they make on site.
While many ice cream parlors are small specially shops located in a plaza or squeezed between bigger buildings, Spruce Pond Creamery is spacious and has a country ambience with a rear balcony overlooking its namesake pond.
"The only thing I don't have is a pasture with cows," said Bluestein, who has owned two other restaurants in Rhode Island and also worked many years in finance and administration.
The creamery serves about 50 flavors of all-natural homemade ice cream as well as "no fat, no sugar" soft serve yogurt and several varieties of sorbet.
Read more about other ice cream places in the area in the Milford Daily News here:

Trivia question: Something is wrong with this sign, can you tell what it is?

Updated 8/13/10:

The answer to the question is that the sign is the "old" one and not the one showing today:

This picture was taken on an overcast day in June. The picture above shows the sign in April before Spruce Pond updated it to show that they can now server beer and wine.

Franklin, MA

Plansee - "we are hiring"

The 60,000-square-foot factory specializes in special metals, known as refractory metals, and precision machining. It produces parts for X-ray machines, light bulbs, flight-safety parts and more.
It moved from Holliston to the Franklin Industrial Park in 1996, where it continues to grow with the help of experienced workers who are required to have some related skills before starting the job.
"They have to be a (computer numerically controlled) machinist. ...They have to have a capability with the machines," Okorn said.
"They have to be able to read blueprints and interpret technical drawings," added Sontgerath.
While machining skills are important, Sontgerath said training is also available.

Read more about the job opportunities at Plansee USA LLC in the Milford Daily News here:

You can visit the Plansee website here

Franklin, MA

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Franklin, MA: Planning Board - 08/09/10 - Agenda

The application for the Franklin Market (Price Chopper) comes back to restart the whole process on Monday, August 9. You may recall that due to a technicality where the developer had not completely notified all the abutters, what had transpired in the prior hearings gets wiped out and they start all over.

Franklin. MA Planning Board: Agenda 8-9-10

Note: email subscribers will need to click through to Franklin Matters to view the document.

Franklin, MA

Franklin, MA: School Committee - Agenda - 8/10/10

Vision Statement
The Franklin Public Schools will foster within its students the knowledge and skills to find and achieve satisfaction in life as productive global citizens.

Mission Statement
The Franklin Public Schools, in collaboration with the community, will cultivate each student's intellectual, social, emotional and physical potential through rigorous academic inquiry and informed problem solving skills within a safe, nurturing and respectful environment.

"The listing of matters are those reasonably anticipated by the Chair which may be discussed at the meeting. Not all items listed may in fact be discussed and other items not listed may also be brought up for discussion to the extent permitted by law."

Call to order Mr. Roy
Pledge of Allegiance
Moment of Silence

1. Routine Business

Citizen’s Comments
Review of Agenda
Minutes: I recommend approval of the minutes from the Executive Session and Open Session of the July 20, 2010 School Committee Meeting.
Payment of Bills - Mr. Glynn
Payroll - Mrs. Douglas
FHS Student Representatives
Correspondence: none

2. Guests/Presentations
a. School Handbooks - Principals
b. District Improvement Plan

3. Discussion Only Items - none

4. Action Items - none

5. Information Matters

Superintendent’s Report
a. MSBA Update
b. Personnel Update
c. Schedules / Teacher Assignments
d. Center For American Progress
e. New Staff Orientation (8/24, 25, 26 – RMS 8:00 A.M.)
f. Foreign Language Technology Presentation
g. Proposed School Committee Presentations 2010-11

School Committee Sub-Committee Reports
School Committee Liaison Reports

6. New Business
To discuss future business that may be brought before the School Committee.

7. Executive Session
Contractual Negotiations

8. Adjourn

Franklin (MA) Public Schools: District Improvement Plan

The following document is scheduled for discussion at the School Committee meeting on Tuesday, August 10, 2010.

The document outlines the District Improvement Plan (fondly referred to as the 'DIP'). The District Improvement Plan takes the Strategic Plan and sets out actions to bring the district to a level of achievement for each of their strategic objectives.

The format of the document should be easy to follow. Each page lays out one of the Core Values, with columns to show the strategies, resources, responsibilities, timelines, etc. to take action on.

Franklin (MA) Public Schools: District Improvement Plan_4SC_2010-12

How does this look to you?

What feedback would you have for the Administration, School Committee and whomever else participates on Tuesday evening?