• SC Minutes 11/30/2016



    School Committee Meeting

    Wednesday, November 30, 2016

    Sharon Middle School

    75 Mountain Street

    Sharon, MA 02067

    Present: Katie Currul-Dykeman, Jon Hitter, Marcy Kaplan, Laura Salomons, Emily Smith-Lee, Veronica Wiseman

    Also present for Open Session:  Tim Farmer, Jahmal Mosley, John Marcus, Susan Owen, Amy Steinberg, Rory Marty, Megan Sullivan, SHS student representatives, and a member of the community

    Open Session was called to order at 7:02 p.m.

    MOTION: (Smith-Lee/Salomons) Moved to enter into Executive Session for the purpose of negotiations with unionized personnel with the intent to return to Open Session. Yes vote: Currul-Dykeman, Hitter, Kaplan, Salomons, Smith-Lee, Wiseman

    Open Session was convened at 7:50 p.m.



    The following correspondence was received:

    1) Letter from Town Clerk thanking administration for their assistance on Election Day.

    2) Letter from Town Clerk re: Special Town Meeting on December 12, 2016

    3) Letter from community member re: American Flags on display at SHS. Dr. Libano responded to the inquiry.

    SHS Student Representatives

    Recent happenings at SHS:

    1) Congratulations to the varsity football team on their Thanksgiving Day win over Oliver Ames High School

    2) Fall sports ending – winter sports are getting underway

    3) The Drama Club’s musical, Hairspray, was performed during the week for the entire SHS student population and staff

    4) Mid-term has ended – grades are posted in Power School


    Consent Agenda:

    1. Approve Open Session Minutes (11/9/16)

    2. Approve $1,000 donation from MA Special Olympics

    3. Approve creation of Special Needs Reserve Account

    4. Approve remote participation in public meetings

    5. Approve new SHS clubs (Policy JFF)

    MOTION: (Salomons /Wiseman) Moved to approve consent agenda items 1-5 as presented. Yes vote: Currul-Dykeman, Hitter, Kaplan, Salomons, Smith-Lee, Wiseman


    Recycling Update

    M. Sullivan, with the aid of PowerPoint, updated the Committee on the recycling efforts district-wide, which have been accomplished through a grant from the MA DEP. The district has also received a recycling grant from the Sharon Education Foundation. After the grant money ends, in order to continue the great strides that have been made, the budget would need to allocate approximately $12,000. R. Marty noted that it would be necessary to have an employee designated for coordinating the recycling program.

    Following the presentation, there was a Q&A with the Committee.

    FY 2016 Year End Report & FY 2017 First Quarter Report

    S. Owen, with the aid of PowerPoint updated the Committee on the Year End and First Quarter Reports.

    Areas covered in the presentation included:

    Year End 2016 – Remaining balance of $1,479.28 was returned to the Town. Encumbered 2016 purchase orders in the amount of $314,238.37 will be paid as the delayed materials and supplies arrive. Any savings realized from the encumbered purchase orders will be returned to the Town.

    Athletic Department was in need of a transfer from the Assets account (voted and approved by S.C. at a previous meeting) in the amount of $100,000, which was used for equipment, uniforms, etc.

    Circuit Breaker – 2016 funding based on a 75% reimbursement rate was $947,332. This amount was carried over in its entirety into 2017.

    First Quarter Report

    Expenses to date are proceeding as projected.

    Salaries – money has been encumbered through the end of the year

    Electric – To date, 24% has been spent out of the utility budget

    Gas – To date, 3% has been spent out of the utility budget

    Circuit Breaker – projected total for this year is $1,149,785, which is based on a 70% reimbursement rate

    Capital Outlay – Beginning balance - $1,111,900. To date $247,928.57 has been spent for computers, furniture, phone system upgrade, MS track repair, projectors, wireless access, acoustics, SPED vans

    Grants – 2017 total is $1,431,632 compared to 2016 of $1,401,738. The difference of $29,894 is due to the small annual grant increase and a new SPED grant shared with the Striar School and the decrease in the NCLB Grants (Title 1 & Title 2)

    Student Activity Accounts – Strict laws require that student activity check accounts’ can only maintain a maximum balance $4,000

    Following the presentation, there was a Q&A with the Committee.

    Early Childhood Fees

    A. Steinberg and S. Owen highlighted the material that was in the S.C. drop-box regarding Early Childhood Fees. Based on the current year revenue and expenses, an increase in the preschool tuition for 2018 is recommended. No increases occurred between 2011 – 2015. The proposed increase if 5%, which would be used for operational expenses and salaries.

    Following the presentation, there was a Q&A with the Committee. Approval of the increase will be part of the Consent Agenda at the Dec. 7th meeting.

    The budget subcommittee will have further discussion on the kindergarten balance going forward.

    FY2018 Preliminary Budget

    T. Farmer and S. Owen presented the 2018 preliminary working budget plan. Areas covered on the spreadsheet included basic rollover costs, staffing needs to maintain class size, programs for moving the district forward. Percentage needed for 2018 is 2.91% - ($42,475,009.30 – an overall increase of $1,201,132.47 from 2017)

    Further discussion on the preliminary 2018 budget, which will include staffing needs and class size will be an agenda item at the Dec. 21st meeting.

    Policy INJDC, Employee Use of Social Media and Policy JICJB, Student Use of Social Media

    J. Marcus and the policy subcommittee presented an overview of the draft policies, which included language clarification and updating to comply with state and federal guidelines. After a lengthy discussion regarding language for the policies, it was the consensus of the Committee to have the policy subcommittee revise the document, including the suggestions from this evening’s meeting, for the Dec. 21st meeting. E. Smith-Lee stated that it is important to have an updated policy on bullying and harassment.


    T. Farmer asked the Committee to read the White Paper on Homework Research, Practices and Recommendations compiled by the Homework Task Force. It is a complete, comprehensive document and reflects many hours of time and dedication by the Task Force members (Teachers: Stephen Banno, Cheryl Harris, Karen Gulley, Christine Moore – Parents: Joanne Blatte, Jodi Carter – Administrators: Timothy Farmer, John Marcus and Kevin O’Rourke). The final document will be electronically available to all staff and parents.

    Due to the lateness of the hour, the Social Emotional Learning Task Force update will be on the Dec. 21st agenda.

    V. Wiseman updated the Committee on her meeting with the Town Clerk re: legal requirements for changing the composition of a board/committee. Next step will be for V. Wiseman to meet with Town Counsel regarding the wording for an article to be presented at the Annual Town Meeting. The Committee will have further discussion at the Dec. 7th meeting.


    T. Farmer, with the aid of PowerPoint, updated the Committee on the following:

    • Dec. 8th – PD workshops offered by teachers for teachers – focus moves beyond technology.

    •  Chinese exchange students have left Sharon and are now in LA before returning home.

    • SHS Spanish students have returned from a Thanksgiving week trip to Spain.

    • School and district state test “report cards” will be sent to parents before the December break.

    • Congratulations to everyone involved in the outstanding performance of Hairspray.

    • District newsletter will be sent out next week.

    • The Committee was updated on the district’s response to an incident that occurred at SMS. There will be administrative team discussions on Monday.

    Other Business

    There being no other business, M. Kaplan asked for a motion to adjourn Open Session.

    MOTION: (Salomons/Smith-Lee) Moved to adjourn Open Session. Yes vote:  Currul-Dykeman, Hitter, Kaplan, Salomons, Smith-LeeWiseman

    Open Session was adjourned at 10:51 p.m.

    Submitted on behalf of the School Committee by: Helen Campanario, Recording Secretary to the School Committee

    Back-up Materials for the November 30, 2016 meeting

    • copies of correspondence

    • copies of consent agenda materials

    • copy of Year-End Report documents

    • copy of Budget First Quarter documents

    • copy of Early Childhood fees information

    • copy of draft policies INJDC and JICJB

    • copy of Homework Task Force documents