Feb. 26, 2020 Teaching/Policy Joint Meeting


Quincy School Committee
Joint Meeting of Teaching & Learning and Policy Subcommittees

**This meeting is a Committee of the Whole**

Mrs. Emily Lebo, Teaching & Learning Chair
Mr. Paul Bregoli & Mr. Frank Santoro, Subcommittee Members

Mr. Paul Bregoli, Policy Chair
Mr. Anthony Andronico & Mrs. Kathryn Hubley, Subcommittee Members

Wednesday, February 26, 2020, 6:00 pm
Coddington Building

  1. QPS Mentor Program - Ms. Roy, Mr. Hennessy

  2. Proposed Revision to Policy 9.11.1 Homework - Mrs. Lebo

  3. Proposed Revision to the QPS Homework Guide - Mrs. Lebo

  4. Review of Policies 11.12.1 and 12.2 Relations with Other Schools and School Districts  - Mr. Bregoli, Dr. DeCristofaro, Mr. Mulvey


Quincy School Committee Joint Teaching & Learning and Policy Subcommittees Meeting ~ Wednesday, February 26, 2020

A joint meeting of the Teaching & Learning and Policy Subcommittees was held on Wednesday, February 26 at 6:00 pm in the Coddington Building. Present were Mayor Thomas Koch, Mr. Anthony Andronico, Mr. Paul Bregoli (Policy Chair), Mr. Doug Gutro, Mrs. Kathryn Hubley, Mrs. Emily Lebo (Teaching & Learning Chair), and Mr. Frank Santoro. Also present were Superintendent Richard DeCristofaro, Deputy Superintendent Kevin Mulvey, Ms. Marisa Forrester, Ms. Julie Graham, Mr. James Hennessy, Ms. Maura Papile, Ms. Erin Perkins, Ms. Kimberley Quinn, Ms. Madeline Roy, Mr. Keith Segalla, Mr. Edward Smith; and Ms. Laura Owens, Clerk.

Wollaston Elementary School Principal James Hennessy and Senior Curriculum Director Madeline Roy presented an update on the Quincy Public Schools Mentor Program. The Mentor Program meets the Massachusetts Standards for Teacher Induction Programs and the requirement for Professional Licensure. The goals of the Mentoring Program are to help new teachers improve practice, learn professional responsibilities, and ultimately positively affect student learning. The Mentoring Program allows veteran teachers to reflect and improve upon their practice, while coaching a new staff member. The program helps to unite the learning community as each individual works toward the same goal of improving the quality of education for students. The program’s final goal is to elevate the teaching profession and foster a collaborative learning community for all educators. These benefits can lead to a high rate of retention, as new educators find themselves in an environment that cultivates continual growth and success.

The process begins with the QPS New Professional Staff Orientation in August before the start of the school year and continues through the five meetings held during the school year. Mentor meetings feature whole-group informational presentations, mentor-protégé support and collaboration; small group discussions; and opportunities to connect with job-alike colleagues. The plan for the meetings evolve over the course of the year, integrating evaluations and suggestions from previous meetings. This year, 55 newer employees are being mentored by 54 veteran staff members.

As a district, reflection is provided through the Massachusetts Statewide Induction and Mentoring Report, which identification of strengths and areas for further development. In addition, the data provided to DESE allows for identification of promising practices to share across districts and understand areas where the agency can provide additional supports and resources to districts.

Mr. Andronico arrived at 6:15 pm.

Mr. Gutro asked about requirements for participation, mentors are volunteers and new employees are required to participate.

Mrs. Lebo thanked the presenters, very happy to see the job-alike opportunities, very important for small schools where there may only be one of a type of position, such as guidance counselor or ELL teacher. Mrs. Lebo asked about relevance of meeting topics for student support and nurses, Ms. Roy said these have their own job-specific topics for discussion.

The next item on the agenda was the revision of School Committee Policy 9.11.1 Homework.

Mr. Gutro asked about posting the proposed revised Policy for public comment. Mrs. Lebo clarified that once the revised Policy is voted back to the full School Committee, it will be posted on the website for public comment. Mr. Gutro requested notice be emailed to parents and staff.

Mr. Bregoli said that student athletes he spoke to were concerned about the potential for up to three hours of homework and is concerned about student stress and anxiety

Mrs. Lebo said the language change is to allow more leeway for teachers; they may assign up to 30 minutes per subject for high school students and are not required to assign a minimum amount.

Mr. Santoro said that on the Quincy High School schedule, students don’t have every subject every day. Mr. Gutro and Mrs. Hubley confirmed that North Quincy High School’s schedule is similar.

Mr. Andronico made a motion to move the revised School Committee Policy 9.11.1 Homework to School Committee for consideration. Mrs. Hubley seconded the motion and on a voice vote, the ayes have it.

The next item on the agenda is the revised Homework Guide. Mrs. Lebo said this is not a Policy, but reflects the revised Policy. Mr. Gutro asked that this be posted for public comment as well.

Mr. Andronico made a motion to move the revised Homework Guide to School Committee for consideration. Mrs. Hubley seconded the motion and on a voice vote, the ayes have it.

Mr. Gutro left the meeting at 6:25 pm

Mr. Mulvey introduced the proposed revision to School Committee Policy 11.12.1 Criteria for Approval of a Private School.

Mr. Bregoli asked about Special Education services; Ms. Perkins said students would receive services at their home school as they do now for any current private school students.

Mr. Mulvey said that he researched the liability for School Committee denial of a private school application and there are no existing cases.

Mr. Mulvey said that Mr. Santoro inquired about whether School Committee is required to look back at established schools and outside legal counsel has advised this is not the case. Existing schools would have the obligation to notify the Quincy School Committee when making a significant change, such as adding grades.

Mrs. Lebo suggested adding a notification provision for significant changes to any of these criteria.

Mr. Andronico asked who would be responsible for monitoring these changes.

Dr. DeCristofaro suggested that any substantial change to the approved facts about the private school must be submitted to the Superintendent and School Committee.

Mr. Bregoli asked who determines that their technology and textbooks are adequate. Dr. DeCristofaro said that the Superintendent’s Leadership Team will assist in the evaluation and provide a recommendation to School Committee.

Mr. Mulvey said he would provide amended language for the March 4 School Committee meeting,

Mr. Andronico made a motion to move the revised School Committee Policy 11.12.1 Criteria for Approval of a Private School to School Committee for consideration with the amended language proposed. Mrs. Hubley seconded the motion and on a voice vote, the ayes have it.

Mrs. Hubley made a motion to adjourn the Joint Teaching & Learning and Policy Subcommittees meeting at 6:35 pm. Mr. Andronico seconded the motion and on a voice vote, the ayes have it.