Brockton, Massachusetts Regular Meeting March 7, 2017

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; Mr. Minichiello, Vice-Chair; Ms. Asack, Mr. D'Agostino, Mr. Gormley, Ms. Plant, Mr. Sullivan

Also Present: Executive Team, Laurie Mason

Absent: Superintendent Smith, Mrs. Sullivan

Mayor Carpenter called the meeting to order at 7:05 p.m., followed by a salute to the flag.

Hearing of Visitors Mayor Carpenter called on the following visitors to address the committee:
Teresa McIntosh, Gilmore parent, spoke against moving Gilmore to Barrett Russell;
Karen Shore, Occupational Therapist, spoke against moving the Gilmore School;
Erin Gallup, Gilmore teacher, spoke against moving the Gilmore School;
Timothy and Dina Furtado, Gilmore parents, spoke against moving the Gilmore School;
Lisa Sinkiewicz, Gilmore parent, spoke against moving the Gilmore School;
Helen Virga, former Gilmore Principal spoke against moving the Gilmore School;
Amanda Carlson, Gilmore parent, spoke against moving the Gilmore School;
Liz Kahn, Gilmore parent, spoke against moving the Gilmore School;
Keith Lawson, Gilmore parent, spoke against moving the Gilmore School;
Maureen Riley, widow of Kevin Riley, spoke against moving the school and the Sway
playground dedicated in her husband's name;
Samara DePina, Huntington parent, supported the Huntington to Gilmore move;
Kate Uchal, Huntington parent, supported the Huntington to Gilmore School move.

On behalf of the school committee, Mr. Minichiello said there is no easy solution to the issues the district is facing. He thanked the audience for their courteousness and said the committee understands this is an emotional issue; there will be further discussion and an open house (at the Barrett Russell). Mr. Minichiello said the committee appreciates the speakers' thoughts on the matter.

Mayor Carpenter commented that the budget deficit is very real and the cuts this year will be the most painful. He said he wants to put into perspective the difficulties the school committee and administration are facing as they deal with the second consecutive year of less than adequate funding from the state; they are looking at all angles to save money and preserve staff. He said if the numbers stand as they are right now, there will be devastating cuts cross the district. The Mayor advised that people should be calling their state legislators to advocate for proper funding for the district, Brockton received one of the smallest percentage increases this year while adding over 200 more students. Mayor Carpenter also assured people that we are going to do the best we can and we need you to work with us.

Mayor Carpenter called a 5-minute recess at 8:10 allow the crowd to exit the meeting if they so wished. The meeting resumed at 8:15 p.m.

Consent Agenda Mayor Carpenter explained the purpose of the Consent Agenda and asked members if there were any requests to remove items for further discussion; Mr. D'Agostino removed Item C, Accounts Review Report, and Mr. Minichiello removed Items F, G, H, and I, new scholarships.

Mr. Sullivan moved the Superintendent's recommendation to approve the following remaining items on the Consent Agenda, Ms. Plant seconded the motion.

• February 7, 2017 Regular School Committee Meeting Minutes
• February 7, 2017 Finance Subcommittee Meeting Report
• Field Trip: BHS Science Club Deep Sea Fishing Excursion
• Out-of-State Field Trip: Ashfield Middle School to Newport, RI
• Notification of Personnel Appointments: Certified & Non-Certified
• Notification of Personnel Actions: Leaves of Absence, Resignations Retirements

Voted: to approve the motion, unanimous.

Mayor Carpenter invited Mr. D'Agostino to address Item C, Accounts Review Report, followed by Mr. Minichiello to speak about the scholarships.

With respect to Item C, the report of the Accounts Review Subcommittee meeting, Mr. D'Agostino said while attending said meeting, he became aware of the fact that one person is responsible for maintaining all 43 vehicles owned by the school department, as well as the 400 pieces of equipment that are used to maintain our facilities. He wanted to publicly acknowledge that person, Mr. John Anderson.

Mr. D'Agostino moved to accept Item C, the report of the March 1, 2017 Accounts Review meeting, the motion was seconded by Ms. Asack.

Voted: to approve the motion, unanimous.

Mr. Minichiello said there are some very generous people in the community that he would like to acknowledge for their scholarship donations:
From the City Scholarship – Jefry Lopes
The Brian M. Silva Scholarship – The Silva Family
The Mark R. Boucher Memorial Scholarship for $1,000 – The Boucher Family
The Italian American War Veterans Scholarship

Mr. Minichiello moved to accept the above scholarships; Mr. Sullivan seconded.

Voted: to approve the motion, unanimous.

Communication A request from the Elections Commission was presented by Mr. Thomas for discussion and approval. The Elections commission is requesting the use of the Ashfield, Brookfield, Davis, Downey, East, Gilmore, Hancock, Kennedy, North, Raymond, South and West schools as polling locations for the 2017 election cycle.

Mr. Sullivan moved to approve the request as presented; Mr. D'Agostino seconded the motion.

On the motion: Ms. Plant asked for clarification on whether schools will be closed during voting; Mr. Thomas responded that schools will remain open during the primary election on September 19th; but will be closed on November 7th.

Voted: to approve the motion, unanimous.

Superintendent's Mr. Thomas began by stating that he was saddened by the recent discovery of racist,
Report offensive writings at Brockton High School; Brockton prides itself on its diversity. He reported that school police continue to investigate and, if caught, the student will face expulsion and will be charged with a hate crime. He said it is unfortunate that this is happening across the country.

Mayor Carpenter said there is zero tolerance for this type of action; whatever resources are available will be allocated, as we want to send a clear message that this will not be tolerated. Mr. Minichiello agreed, stating that this community and this school committee will not tolerate this, it is not reflective of our community or our schools, and the school committee is in full support of the actions of the administration with respect to these incidents. To Ms. Plant's question as to whether sensitivity training would be provided to the perpetrator if caught, Mr. Minichiello responded it would be court-ordered.

2017-18 School Calendars – Mr. Thomas informed the committee that the calendars presented tonight are a first-read for review and discussion, no action is requested; if appropriate they will be on the agenda at the next meeting for approval.

Drop Out Rate – Mr. Thomas was pleased to report that Brockton's drop-out rate has dropped nearly in half since 2010, from over 15% to 7.6%. He credited the high school, alternative pathways such as Champion High, Edison Academy, Frederick Douglass Academy that provide additional ways for students to get a high school diploma.

Mass Capital Grant - Mr. Thomas announced Brockton was recently awarded $495,674 from the Mass Skills Capital Grant Program. This grant will be used to purchase equipment at the high school for the training of students in advanced manufacturing pathways.

Request for Out-of-State Travel - Mr. Thomas announced that the boys 4 x 4 relay team has qualified to compete in the New Balance Invitational national indoor track meet. He presented a letter from Athletic Director Kevin Karo requesting permission for an out-of-state, overnight, field trip for the five boys and two coaches to travel to New York City on March 10th for this event. Mr. Thomas said there is a cost of $2,300 for transportation and lodging that would be paid from the athletics revolving account. He congratulated students Rudiano Ramos, Djosue dos Santos, Cedric Souffrant, Chris McCaffrey, alternate Antoine McCray, and coaches John Fidalgo and Carlito Weaver.

Mr. Gormley moved to approve the expenditure of $2,300 for the transporting and boarding of the athletes to compete in the national track meet, together with the field trip itself. Ms. Plant seconded the motion.

Voted: to approve the motion, unanimous.

Items to Refer to None.

New Business Appointment of School Committee Member to Code of Conduct Task Force
Mr. Thomas said the Superintendent is looking for a member of school committee to serve on the district’s Code of Conduct Task Force.

Mr. Sullivan nominated Ms. Plant; Ms. Asack nominated Mr. Gormley. It was agreed that more than one member could serve on the task force.

Mr. Minichiello moved to approve the nominations of Ms. Plant and Mr. Gormley to serve on the code of conduct task force, Mr. Sullivan seconded the motion.

Voted: to approve the motion, unanimous.

On a final note, Ms. Plant and Mr. D'Agostino spoke briefly about their wonderful experiences reading at several schools on Read Across America day.

There being no other New Business, the meeting adjourned at 8:45 p.m.

Respectfully submitted,

Michael P. Thomas
Deputy Superintendent/ Secretary