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March 21, 2023

george school
March 21, 2023

 

Brockton, Massachusetts               Brockton School Committee Meeting         March 21, 2023

 

A meeting of the Brockton School Committee was held this evening in the George M. Romm Little Theatre of Brockton High School at seven o'clock. These minutes contain a summary of the meeting and lists items that were under discussion.

Present

Chair, Robert F. Sullivan, Mayor, Ms. Asack, Ms. Ehlers, Mr. Homer, Ms. Rivas Mendes,

Mr. Rodrigues, Ms. Sullivan, Mr. T. Sullivan, Superintendent Thomas

Absent

None

Also Present

Cabinet Members, Ms. Kim Gibson, BEA President, Attorney Peter Mello

 

Mayor Sullivan called the meeting to order at 7:10P, followed by a salute to the flag.

Mayor Sullivan read the following information into the record.

In addition to attending the public can view this meeting via television on Comcast channel 98 and /1071HD Version, and online via this link: www.youtube.com/TheBrocktonChannels

Mayor Sullivan then took a roll-call to establish a quorum.

Ms. Sullivan (Here)                Mr. Homer (Here)                    Ms. Ehlers (Here)                            Ms. Rivas Mendes (Here)         Mr. Rodrigues (Here)               Ms. Asack (Here)                            Mr. T. Sullivan (Here)             Mr. R. Sullivan (Here)

Hearing

of

Visitors

Mr. John Williams stated topic was:  The mistreatment of minorities in this system/city.

 

Mr. George Brickhouse stated topic was:  Critical Analytical Thinking program (CAT).

Consent Agenda

Mayor Sullivan explained the purpose of the Consent Agenda, read the items aloud and asked members for any requests to remove items for further discussion.

 

Ms. Sullivan made a motion to approve the Consent Agenda in its entirety, seconded by Mr. Sullivan.

 

The motion passed unanimously.

 

Superintendent’s Report

Teaching & Learning

Superintendent Thomas introduced Abigail Bertocchi.

Student Rep Report

Abby, using a PowerPoint, reported on High School activities including students that were awarded the Seal of Biliteracy, the 2023 Scholarship Book is available to all seniors and families, the Peer Mediation group was invited to the “Be in the Know Conference” where they shared with other students of what they are doing to make a difference and learn from organizations and nearby schools.  The Boys Basketball team ranked 14th and played their way to the Division 1 Elite Eight game against ranked 6 North High, they took an unfortunate loss after having a great season with a record of 15-8. Congratulations to Christensen Paul who finished 5th and medaled at the New Balance Nationals. It’s officially time for Spring Sports as our athletes conduct their tryouts this week, good luck to all, the annual Student vs Staff Basketball Tournament is Wednesday, April 5th at 2:30P in the gym.  The Jazz Band held the night of Jazz last Saturday the 18th, Brockton High’s Chorus Spring Concert is Thursday, March 23rd at 7P in the auditorium, congratulations to the students on the board for representing BHS in the Massachusetts All State Music Festival.  The Feb Fest drama competition team has moved to State Finals, awards were given to 7 members.  Exciting news, Mama Mia will be the music this year!  Congratulations to Xavier Maceachern, he was  awarded a Golden Glove in Boxing which is a prestigious award given to amateur boxers and the first at Brockton High.

 

Huntington Update

 

Superintendent Thomas gave an update on the recent incident that occurred at the Huntington School.  The matter is under investigation by the Brockton Police Department, and the Brockton Public Schools District will conduct an internal investigation.

 

Ms. Asack asked Superintendent Thomas for an update of the student.  Superintendent Thomas mentioned the student is home recovering well and is looking forward to coming back to school.   

 

Superintendent Thomas invited Ms. Clarissa Turner, Director, and Mr. Rakim Turner of, “Get You to The Gate”, a mentoring program at the Huntington School that works with students that face difficult challenges.  He acknowledged Rakim Turner, John Williams and Shakylia Turner (absent) for stepping into action during the incident.  Ms. Turner spoke briefly to the committee about the program, what it has to offer and how it’s designed to transform students teaching them how to respect teachers, parents and reengage them back to school and letting them know that they matter, and we care about them.

 

Questions/Answers

·       Mr. Rodrigues asked how many mentors are in the program, overall in the district?

Superintendent Thomas mentioned here are 3 mentors at Get You to The Gate Program,

and 16 mentor employees in the district.

·       Mr. Sullivan asked what are the hours for the program?

The hours are 7:45A – 2:15P, Monday thru Friday.

 

 

Honors Academy

Superintendent Thomas invited Mr. Todd Erickson, Coordinator of Accelerated Programs, 4-12 to give an update on the new Honors Academy program.

Mr. Erickson presented a brief powerpoint on the Honors Academy program.  The Honors Academy started this year at seven middle schools: East, West, North, South, Davis, Plouffe and Ashfield, enrolled are 1,106 students, Honors Academy Math, ELA and Classical and Modern Language are offered and taught by 59 teachers.  The Honors Academy has a great support team for teachers that work closely together to provide a network of support.  Planning information was provided for the 2023-2024  for incoming 6th graders.

Mr. Erickson also shared that Brockton Public Schools now has 7 different chapters of the National Junior Honor Society this year at: East, West, North, South, Davis, Plouffe, and Ashfield, each have their own chapters and advisors.  Recently the minimum 3.0 cumulative GPA was set for students and over 1,000 invitations were sent to student to join or apply to be in the chapters and in the spring seven National Junior Honor Society induction ceremonies across the district will take place.    

Questions/Answers

·       Ms. Asack thanked Mr. Erickson for the presentation, she asked when should students expect a letter of acceptance inviting them into the program?

             Mr. Erickson mentioned letters were placed last year in the student Infinite Campus backpack       

             and anticipate notification in the spring of this year.

·       Ms. Sullivan thanked Mr. Erickson for the presentation, she asked that we look at how we manage TAG students at the Angelo as they transition from schools, the friendships developed and leaving their neighborhood school.

·       Ms. Asack echoed Ms. Sullivans statement.

Superintendent Thomas mentioned having TAG students together in one/two classrooms of four/five years did not work.  He’s received more bullying investigations at the Plouffe school due to students being together to long, not a healthy environment and not seeing the results of students doing well.  Parents were notified a year in advance that their child would return to their neighborhood middle school.  The district will look further into the TAG program.

·       Ms. Rivas Mendes gave a shout out to the 1,106 students from the seven middle schools and a question she asked upon joining the school committee, reassuring that all students are getting a high-quality education, this is  huge leap.

·       Ms. Rivas Mendes asked what is this In-rigor-ator 2.0?

Mr. Erickson mentioned In-rigor-ator 2.0 is a PD  that he went and met with the different Honor Academy teachers and had them create their own tools that they could use to help them increase the rigor of the questions that they were asking their students, they have different traits that they look for in their questions and it’s gone well and receive good feedback.

·       Ms. Rivas Mendes asked who is identifying the students to be in the honors program math, English or both?

Mr. Erickson mentioned we are relying more heavily on data such as the MCAS, STAR and students currently in the TAG program.

·       Ms. Rivas Mendes asked for the data background for the 1,106 students.

Mr. Erickson provided the following information:  1,106 students currently enrolled, 2.60 students with disability, former ELL’s is 226 flip students that’s 20.4 %, ELL 1.6%, low income is 62%, Race Groups in terms of African American represents 54%, Asian 3.3%, Hispanic 15.6%, White 20.4%, Native American 0.1%, Native Hawaiian Pacific Islander 0.1% and Multi-Race Non-Hispanic is 5.9%.

 

 

FY2024 Budget

Superintendent Thomas mentioned earlier this evening during the Finance Subcommittee meeting,

Mr. Aldo Petronio, Chief Financial Officer presented the first round of the budget report from the governor’s budget, we will continue to have Finance Subcommittee meetings on Tuesday’s, all meetings will be posted online along with budget documents as we go through this process.

Items to Refer to Subcommittee

Superintendent Thomas requested a Safety, Security Transportation meeting on Tuesday, March 28, 2023 (6P)

Superintendent Thomas requested a Facilities Subcommittee meeting on Tuesday, March 28, 2023 (7P)

Mr. Rodrigues requested an Athletic, Arts, Music, Extra-Curricular Subcommittee Meeting.

Ms. Asack asked Superintendent Thomas for an update on the building dedication for Mr. Jones at the Champion High School.

Superintendent Thomas mentioned Mr. Jones would like to have the building dedication on Tuesday, April 4, 2023 at 11:00A., 596 Summer Street, Brockton, MA 02302.

Unfinished Business

Discussion and Potential vote:  Appointments of Subcommittees for the 2023 Calendar Year

Mayor Sullivan discussed the Bid Review Subcommittee that is under discussion and the intentions of having it a seven-member committee.  Attorney Mello confirmed that the rules and regulations of the school committee will need to be modified, information will be sent to each member in their Friday packet for review prior to the next meeting on the agenda as an item for discussion and potential vote.

New Business

Mayor Sullivan read the following into the record.

·       The Brockton High School Drama Club advanced to the state finals of the Massachusetts Educational Theater Guild High School Theater Festival.  They will perform their short play, entitled “Gossip,” next week at the Back Bay Events Center in Boston.  They are one of only  14 schools out of 100 to advance to the finals. (applause)

 

As Mr. Hogan has said, just making it to the state finals is like making it to the Super Bowl- it is an incredible honor. This is a challenging competition in which everything is timed- including makeup, putting together the set, and the play itself. It is a true testament to the skill not only of the students on stage, but of the entire crew.

 

·       It's also worth noting the Brockton High School Drama Club is defending their state championship because the state-level competition was last held in 2019 and they won with a piece entitled, "Magic Theatre."

 

·       Now another big announcement was made yesterday- the title of the Drama Club's spring 2023 musical. The students will be performing "Mamma Mia!" Believe it or not, this is the FIRST time the BHS Drama Club will perform the hit musical.

 

·       Our Empower Yourself students did an outstanding job at their 9th annual Global Economic Symposium, where they competed against high school and middle school students from Washington DC, New York, New Orleans, Dallas and Chicago. Brockton High School came in first place in the high school division, exploring the topic of Basic Universal Income. During the event, team captain Aris Cardoso learned that he received full scholarships to Notre Dame University, Bentley University, and the Issenberg Institute at UMASS. (applause)

 

·       Our middle school teams swept the middle school division, with North getting first place, and Ashfield teams coming in both second and third.

 

·       This is a program that allows our students to not only explore complex real-world subjects, but also practice their leadership and public speaking skills.

 

·       A reminder that Mr. Jones dedication is April 4, 2023 at 11:00A at the Champion High School, 596 Summer St, Brockton, MA 02302.

 

·       Thank you to the staff and students at Champion today, there was a fire in the woods behind the school, at no time the staff or students were in danger, however it did disrupt dismissal and Principal England was able to coordinate it.  Thank you to Fire Chief Nardelli and the team for putting out the fire in a timely order.

 

·       Ms. Asack mentioned, Thursday, March 23rd is the Spring Coral concert at Brockton High School at 7:00P

 

·       Ms. Asack recognized Ms. Phyllis Ellis and her Executive Team, the Brockton NAACP Branch recognized 10 Phenomenal Women.

 

·       Mayor Sullivan thanked Brockton High students, staff, BCA, Thomas Rhemow and IT Support, Tracy Lopes for their assistance on last Thursday for his State of the City.

 

Executive

Session

Mayor Sullivan read the following into the record, “The Committee will enter Executive Session pursuant to M.G.L. c. 30A, § 21(a)(3), to discuss strategy and obtain advice of counsel with respect to litigation against Juul Labs, Inc. (“Juul”) and others as part of the multi-district litigation pending in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California known as In re: Juul Labs, Inc. Marketing, Sales Practices & Products Liability Litigation, Case No. 3:19-md-2913-WHO, and to consider and potentially vote on a proposed settlement agreement with Juul.  The committee will not return to open session following this Executive Session.”

 

Mr. Homer motioned to go into Executive Session, seconded by Ms. Sullivan.

 

Mayor Sullivan took a roll call vote:

              Ms. Sullivan - yes                         Mr. Homer - yes                     Ms. Ehlers - yes                       

              Ms. Rivas Mendes - yes           Mr. Rodrigues - yes                Ms. Asack - yes                                

              Mr. T. Sullivan - yes               Mr. R. Sullivan – yes

The motion passed unanimously.

 

 

School committee Members went into Executive Session at 8:29P
 

Respectfully submitted,

 

Michael P. Thomas

Secretary

 

mdc

 

Enclosure(s): Student Rep (PPT),  Honors Academy (PPT)