FEBRUARY 5, 2019
The Regular Meeting of the Brockton School Committee was held this evening in the George M. Romm Little Theatre at Brockton High School, at seven o'clock. These minutes contain a summary of the meeting and list items that were under discussion.
Present: Mayor Carpenter, Chair; Ms. Asack, Mr. Gormley, Ms. Plant, Ms. Sullivan, Mr. Sullivan, Superintendent Smith, Student Rep. Nahomie Bosquet
Absent: Mr. Minichiello, Vice-Chair; Mr. D'Agostino
Also Present: Executive Team Members
Mayor Carpenter called the meeting to order at 7:00 p.m., followed by a salute to the flag by Aaron Smith, senior at Brockton High School. A moment of silence followed in memory of Carl Landerholm. Mayor Carpenter spoke of Mr. Landerholm whom the city lost recently as a true icon of this city. He was the President of the Historical Society, President of the Brockton High Alumni Association. He knew the history of this city, loved this city and always gave back. He is a tremendous loss to Brockton. We send our sympathy to the Landerholm family.
Superintendent Smith then introduced Aaron Smith whom she met four years ago at Brockton High. Aaron expressed his happiness as a student, he mentioned that he has perfect attendance, he loves to paint and draw and his favorite class is art. He also loves watching the school committee meetings on television. Aaron conveyed his appreciation to Dr. Davis, Brockton High School Special Education Department Head, Dr. Murray, Principal of Brockton High School and Superintendent Smith.
Mayor Carpenter explained the purpose of the Consent Agenda and asked members for any requests to remove items for further discussion;
Superintendent Smith asked Mayor Carpenter to accept the revised January 15, 2019 minutes that were provided be approved.
Mr. Sullivan motioned the Superintendent's recommendation to approve the Consent Agenda items, Ms. Asack seconded the motion.
Voted: to approve the motion, unanimous.
Superintendent Smith introduced Ms. Cathy Jackson, Team Chairperson in the Special Education department. She has been nominated for the 2018-2019 National LifeChanger of the Year award by community member Mr. Walker. LifeChanger of the Year is an annual program recognizing K-12 educators and school employees across the country. The program celebrates those who are making a significant difference in the lives of students by exemplifying excellence, positive influence and leadership. The grand prize is $10,000 to be split between a $5,000 individual cash award and a $5,000 donation to the winner’s school and district. Ms. Jackson was presented with two certificates one from the Superintendent and Mayor on behalf of the School Committee, and one from National LifeChanger of the Year. Ms. Jackson was accompanied by her husband, Miles Jackson and son Michael Jackson for pictures. Ms. Jackson thanked Mr. Walker for the nomination and the Brockton Public schools for giving her the opportunity to teach and welcoming her into the Special Education department. Ms. Jackson also thanked Ms. Laurie Mason, Director of Special Education.
Superintendent Smith introduced Mr. Leroy Webster, a custodian at the Manthala George, Jr. Elementary School. Mr. Webster is the recipient of the 11th Annual Mentor Rally Award (Old Colony YMCA).
A parent wrote a letter about Mr. Webster and what an impact he has made. This parent expressed how Mr. Webster greets over 1000 students daily with a big smile each morning. One time, he took the day off of work and she expressed to him how much we missed seeing him and his response was, “I try to make it a point to bring my best self to work, I might be having a bad day but I know that everyone is stressed in the morning and it is important for the kids to start the day with a friendly face. His attitude was such an example to me and I appreciate how much effort he puts into making sure the students begin their day well since he is one of the first faces they see at school.”
Mr. Webster was presented with a certificate by the Superintendent and Mayor on behalf of the School Committee and a plaque from the Old Colony YMCA that was presented by Philip Gomez.
Superintendent Smith invited Principal, Ms. Natalie Pohl and Mr. Webster to say a few words. Ms. Pohl reiterated the wonderful things that are being said and how it was no surprise that he was nominated for this award. Mr. Webster thanked Deputy Superintendent Michael P. Thomas for giving him a job and thanked his wife Janice and granddaughter Akyzia.
Student Report (Nahomie Bosquet)
Nahomie reported the girls and boys indoor track team won the Big 3 championships. The girls swim team tied for league championships. Seniors participated in National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAAP) testing and the MCAS Bio retest will be taking place. The drama club held their Febfest February 1st and 2nd where three productions were directed and presented by students. Students are collecting books for the Educational Rising program and toiletries for needy peers. The second semester began on January 29th. Mr. Leonard and several other teachers will be hosting the Annual Bowl for Books on Friday, February 8th at the Westgate Lanes. Funds will be used for purchasing yearbooks. Term II grades will be distributed within a week.
Superintendent Smith spoke about focusing on a number of turnaround practices happening at five schools. Chief Academic Officer, Ms. June Saba-Maguire spoke about the work going forth as we lead up to writing grants and monitor site visits happening in the schools. Ms. Saba-Maguire invited Principal Ms. Natalie Pohl to speak about her involvement with some of the planning process for the turnaround schools in the district. Ms. Saba-Maguire spoke about the Manthala George, Jr. School and how the George is eligible to submit a competitive grant. They must submit a turnaround plan to be eligible to submit a competitive grant. The George school is working closely with the DESE and is sharing information during this process with West Middle School, Plouffe Academy, East Middle School, Brookfield Elementary School. The Arnone and Baker School have been working through this process for several years and are able to provide support.
Superintendent Smith spoke about leadership, shared responsibilities, professional collaboration, intentional practices for improving instruction, student specific supports and school climate and culture and their influences on school improvement.
Superintendent Smith spoke about the continued work that is going on. She attended an advocacy meeting at the state level with a number of urban districts, and reported we are watching the governor’s budget closely, along with the Senate bill and the House bill. Our State Legislators are meeting this week with the Superintendent to look at which bill best supports our students in the Brockton Public Schools. On January 8th the Massachusetts Association of School Superintendents sponsored community forums in Fitchburg, Malden and New Bedford to discuss the Equity in Education Project “A Tale of Many Cities”. The Superintendent and Aldo Petronio attended the forum in Malden. They have been asked to go to Lowell and share the message of the “Tale of More Cities”. Superintendent Smith would like to host a forum in our Brockton community in March of 2019.
Collaborative partnership with the Y and Project Grads Presentation
Coordinator of Extended Day Melissa Sheppard and Sr. Vice President – Old Colony Y, Erin Spaulding presented a PowerPoint on the collaborative partnership with the Y and Project Grads. Superintendent Smith also mentioned that 21st Century Coordinator Heather Arrighi, Director of Community Schools, Marguerite Masson, Program Director, Family Support – Old Colony Y, Lauren Selman have all participated in the success of this partnership. The PowerPoint gave a history and timeline of the program. Support systems are in place that allow teen parents to attend school and their children to attend daycare. The program services seventeen moms, two teen moms attend the Keith Center and fifteen teen moms attend Brockton High. Two children are at the Old Colony Y’s West Chestnut Street location. Ten teen mothers of Project Grads are seniors and are on task of graduating this year. Six teen mothers have been accepted in an on-the-spot admissions event with Massasoit Community College in the fall. Graduating seniors will have access to fulltime childcare at the Old Colony Y Center, opportunities for Summer of Work and Learning and continued access to emergency basic needs. Superintendent Smith spoke on how this is a transition year and meetings are held on a regular basis. Superintendent Smith talked about support here at Brockton High and looking at the possibility to include a stipend for a guidance position. She will work with the Brockton Education Association (BEA) looking at an additional job making sure teen mothers are supported. She will report back at the end of the school year to review the program and to discuss what we are looking at moving forward for the next year.
Trip to Cape Verde
The district was contacted by Dr. Joao Rosa from Bridgewater State University Institute for Cape Verdean Studies about a cultural trip to Cape Verde. Director of Bilingual Education, Ms. Kellie Jones spoke about how several of our teachers will attend the upcoming trip April 8th through April 20th. The itinerary includes trips to schools and classrooms, as well as to the University of Cape Verde. It also includes a meeting with the Mayor of Praia and a trip to the Island of Fogo.
2019-2020 BPS Academic School Year Calendar – FIRST READ
The 2019-2020 draft version of the BPS Academic School Year Calendar FIRST READ was presented for the school committee to review.
Ms. Woodcock mother of Jeffrey Woodcock a former student in the Brockton school system sent a thank you note for the opportunities Community school programs offer. She talks about signing her son Jeffrey up for swimming lessons at the Cape Cod Swim Club. The head coach saw him and thought he had the skills to be on the swim team. Jeffrey went to his first meet recently and qualified for regionals. Ms. Woodcock thanked Brockton for doing a great job.
Davis School – thanked the School Committee for allocating funds back into their afterschool garden club - The Davis Diggers.
Congratulations to six Brockton High School student musicians who have been accepted in the 2019 Massachusetts All State Music Festival. From the Chorus – Craig Duong, Domenick DeAndrade, Giovani Pereira, Victoria Sueiro and Marc Valcin. Elizabeth Moukit from the Band.
Items to Refer to Subcommittee
Mayor Carpenter requested to schedule a Facilities Usage & Planning Subcommittee, Finance Subcommittee and Superintendent’s Contract Subcommittee meeting. The Mayor would like to update the committee members on the Shaws Center.
Ratification of MOA – Paraprofessional Association
Mr. Sullivan motioned to ratify the Memorandum of Agreement between the Brockton School Committee and the Brockton Education Paraprofessional Association. The new contract shall be effective for a three-year period from July 1, 2018 through June 30, 2021. Ms. Asack seconded.
Voted: to approve the motion, unanimous.
Mayor Carpenter announced that school committee had personnel matters to deal with and would go into Executive Session accordance with MGL Chapter 30A, Section 21, and that the regular meeting would not reconvene.
Mr. Sullivan moved to go into Executive Session; seconded by Ms. Asack. A Roll Call Vote was taken:
- Mayor Carpenter – yes
- Ms. Asack – yes
- Mr. Gormley – yes
- Ms. Plant – yes
- Ms. Sullivan – yes
- Mr. Sullivan – yes
School Committee went into Executive Session at 8:09 p.m.
Kathleen A. Smith, JD
Project Grads PowerPoint