• SC Minutes 10/09/2013



    School Committee Meeting

    Wednesday, October 9, 2013

    Sharon Middle School

    75 Mountain Street

    Sharon, MA 02067

    Present: Katie Currul-Dykeman, Jon Hitter, Marcy Kaplan, Laura Salomons, Emily Smith-Lee, Veronica Wiseman (arrived at 8:12 p.m.)

    Also present: Tim Farmer, Glenn Brand, and representatives from the STA

    E. Smith-Lee called the Open Session meeting to order at 7:03 p.m.


    Open Forum

    There were no members of the audience present for participation in Open Forum.


    There were three pieces correspondence to come before the Committee:

    1)Email from Senator Brian Joyce re: 2014 Grant opportunities to help support local government designed to deliver local services more effectively and efficiently. Application deadline: November 22, 2013

    2)Email from Marlene Chused re: Special Town Meeting scheduled for November 4, 2013 – 7:00 p.m. SHS Auditorium

    3)Petition from STA members district-wide re: contract negotiations. Wording of the petition: “We the undersigned support the STA Negotiation team. We look forward to a contract that demonstrates our mutual investment in and commitment to excellence in the Sharon Public Schools.”

    Student Advisory Committee Representative

    Recent happenings at SHS:

    • Open House at SHS: October 10th from 7:00 – 9:00 p.m.

    • Fall sports are underway and enjoying a successful season so far.

    • Student Council in conjunction with the Red Cross sponsored a successful Blood Drive on October 3rd.

    • PTSO have funded three hallway tv’s.

    • Home Coming and Athletes’ Service Day were held last weekend.

    • The Guidance Department is scheduling College Fairs at SHS.

    • Senior’s first extended lunch will be October 11th.


    Consent Agenda

    1. Approve Meeting Minutes – Open & Executive Session (September 11 & 18, 2013)

    2. Approve Appleby Trust Donation ($8,000)

    3. Approve Home Schooling Request

    4. Approve Superintendent’s Goals

    E. Smith-Lee asked for a motion to approve consent agenda items: Open & Executive Session minutes from September 11 & 18 2013, Appleby Trust Donation ($8,000), Home Schooling Request, Superintendent’s Goals

    MOTION: (Salomons/Wiseman) Moved to approve consent agenda items as read and submitted. Yes vote: Currul-Dykeman, Kaplan, Salomons, Smith-Lee, Wiseman


    MCAS Results Annual Update 2013

    G. Brand, with the aid of PowerPoint, presented 2013 MCAS Performance & Accountability Report. The PowerPoint presentation, in its entirety, is available on the school department’s website. Included in the presentation:

    • Explanation and key concepts of Progress & Performance Index (PPI) and Composite Performance Index (CPI)

    • Explanation of Sharon’s accountability data

    • Accountability and assistance level of each school (Cottage & East – level 1; Heights, Middle and High School – level 2)

    • Required actions for level 2 districts & schools

    • Review of ELA, Math & Science proficiency gaps

    • Review of Math, ELA, Science/Technology performances

    • Review of areas of concern and action steps

    • Review of sampling of other surrounding districts

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

    Review/Release of Executive Session Minutes

    E. Smith-Lee outlined the procedure for reviewing/releasing Executive Session minutes. K. Currul-Dykeman will review the minutes, make recommendations for redactions and present to School Committee for a vote to release.

    Pond Street Property Adjacent to SHS

    E. Smith-Lee updated the Committee on her recent conversation with Selectman Bill Heiten re: property for sale adjacent to the High School. She asked for feedback from members on whether to meet with the owner or not to continue discussion on the feasibility of possibly acquiring the property. There was a discussion on the pros and cons. It was the consensus of the Committee that E. Smith-Lee and John Hitter will meet with the owner. Following the meeting, they will bring back additional information to the Committee for further discussion.


    L. Salomons presented the following policies and recommendations from the policy subcommittee:


    AB-People & Their School DistrictDelete incorrect Legal ref. & correct

    ACE-Nondiscrimination on the Basis of HandicapAdd legal ref “as amended”

    AD-Mission StatementReplace old w/recently adopted statement

    GBEBC-Gifts to & Solicitations by StaffRevise to include State Ethics Law changes

    GCRD-Tutoring for PayRevise for clarification-add MA Ethic ref.

    IB-Academic FreedomDelete

    IC/ICA-School Year/School CalendarRevise-minor changes

    IHAM-R-Health Education ExemptionRevise for clarity

    ID-School DayNo changes

    IHAMA-Teaching about Drugs, Alcohol & TobaccoRevise for simplification

    IHAMB-Parental Notification Relative to Sex EducationRevise for simplification – add legal ref.

    IHBD-Compensatory Education (Title 1)No changes

    IHCA-Summer SchoolDelete

    IHBD-Adult Education ProgramDelete

    IJLAA-School Libraries-GiftsRevise to change title and add cross ref.

    IJOA-R-Student Travel RegulationsRevise for clarity re: legal ref.

    IJOB-Community Resource Persons/SpeakersRevise for simplification

    IJOC-School VolunteersRevise for simplification

    IK-Academic AchievementRevise for clarity, including change of title

    IKB-HomeworkRevise for simplification

    Following the presentation of the policies, there was a discussion, which included: GBEBC-Gifts to & Solicitations by Staff - K. Currul-Dykeman expressed her concern that the specific language in the policy puts an undue burden on teachers and that the wording exceeds the intent of the law.

    IB-Academic Freedom – E. Smith-Lee questioned if the policy should be deleted as recommended by the Policy Subcommittee. There was a discussion on possibly retaining an Academic Freedom policy, but changing the entire wording to reflect the truer meaning of Academic Freedom or to see if there were other policies in the manual that addresses “academic freedom”.

    The policies presented this evening will be voted on at the October 23rd meeting.

    MASC Delegate

    The following motion was made:

    MOTION (Currul-Dykeman/Salomons) Moved to nominate Marcy Kaplan as the Sharon Public Schools MASC Delegate for the November conference. Yes vote: Currul-Dykeman, Hitter, Kaplan, Smith-Lee, Salomons, Wiseman


    Subcommittee Reports

    Budget subcommittee met this evening at 6:00 p.m. Areas of discussion included:

    • FY 2015 budget guidelines/calendar review

    • Review of submitted but not yet vetted Capital requests

    • S.C. budget priorities discussion

    • Transportation, athletic and full day kindergarten financing

    V. Wiseman asked if it would be possible to examining test scores of students over the years that attended full-day kindergarten vs. half-day kindergarten. There was a discussion on the feasibility of collecting and analyzing the data. T. Farmer stated that the approximate cost for full-day kindergarten is $600,000. There would have to be additional budget cuts if the Committee wants full-day kindergarten as a budget priority. L. Salomons stated that the Strategic Plan should be the School Committee’s budget priority. For further budget discussion, members were asked to prioritize within our existing programs.

    Finance Committee – L. Salomons updated the Committee on the recent Finance Committee meeting where the developer of Rattlesnake/Brickstone property presented a proposal for the property. Options included: A) a 40B development with approximately 125-250 units. B) Sell part of the land back to the town for approximately three million dollars and build 98 houses on the rest of the property. There was a discussion on the impact on the schools as a result of either option.

    Recreation Department – K. Currul-Dykeman updated the Committee on the recent Rec Dept. meeting. One of the subjects discussed was the possibility of the Rec Dept. selling parking spots at the lake to SHS students.


    T. Farmer presented the following Superintendent items:

    • Cathy Collins, SHS librarian, has been selected for the teachers for Global Classrooms Program. She is one of 72 teachers receiving this fellowship.

    • An article from Education Week “Fewer, Better Tests Can Boost Student Achievement” for SC FYI.

    • Charms Collaborative Board Update – the Collaborative is in good shape ($120,000) in discretionary funds.

    • This is the third year in a row that East Elementary School has been identified by the DESE as a high achievement school.

    • The train station is in the process of doing some renovations, the town has requested to use One School Street as train parking until the renovations are completed.

    Other Business

    There being no further business, E. Smith-Lee asked for a motion to adjourn Open Session and enter into Executive Session for the purpose of discussing collective bargaining with the intent not to return to Open Session.

    MOTION: (Salomons/Kaplan) Moved to adjourn Open Session and enter into Executive Session for the purpose of discussing collective bargaining with the intent not to return to Open Session.

    Yes vote: Currul-Dykeman, Hitter, Kaplan, Salomons, Smith-Lee, Wiseman

    Open Session was adjourned at 9:33 p.m.

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

    Back-up Materials for the October 9, 2013 meeting


    • minutes – Exec. & Open – 9/11 & 9/18/2013

    • copy of information re: Appleby Trust Donation

    • copy of home schooling request

    • copy of Superintendent’s goals


    • copy of PowerPoint re: MCAS Results Annual Update - 2013



    • copy of letter re: Cathy Collins TGC fellowship

    • copy of article from Education Week

    • copy of Charms Collaborative Report


    • enrollment data

    • After Care News Letters (Heights & Cottage)

    • copy of letter to Ma Dept. of Public Health re: Concussion Policy

    • copy of Superintendent’s contract

    • copy of letter from Attorney General re: Open Meeting Law Complaint (Great Barrington Board of Selectmen)

    • copy of Department of Labor Relations re: mediation/prehearing conference/hearing