Dec. 3, 2020 EDI Sub Meeting


Quincy School Committee

Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion Subcommittee

Per Governor Baker’s order suspending certain provisions of the Open Meeting Law G.L. c. 30A sec. 20, the public will not be allowed to physically access this School Committee meeting. Members of the Public can access the meeting audio live on QATV Channel 22 or at The meeting will also be recorded for rebroadcast and posted on the QPS website on Friday, December 4, 2020.

Mr. Anthony Andronico, Chair
Mr. Doug Gutro & Mrs. Emily Lebo, Subcommittee Members

Thursday, December 3, 2020, 4:30 pm
via Zoom

  1. City of Quincy Social Justice & Equity Department Discussion - Vice Chair Andronico

  2. VISIONS, Inc. Proposal Review - Superintendent Mulvey, Ms. Maura Papile


Quincy School Committee

Equity, Diversity & Inclusion Subcommittee Meeting ~ Thursday, December 3, 2020

A meeting of the Equity, Diversity & Inclusion Subcommittee was held on Thursday, December 3, 2020 at 4:30 pm via Zoom. Present were Mr. Doug Gutro, Mrs. Emily Lebo, Mr. Frank Santoro, and Mr. Anthony Andronico, Vice Chair and Subcommittee Chair. Also present were Superintendent Kevin Mulvey, Assistant Superintendent Erin Perkins, Ms. Allison Cox, Ms. Julie Graham, Ms. Bridget Vaughan, Ms. Maura Papile, Ms. Madeline Roy, Ms. Kimberley Quinn; City Council President Nina Liang and Ward 4 City Councillor Brian Palmucci; Quincy Education Association President Sean Greene; and Ms. Laura Owens, Clerk.

Vice Chair Anthony Andronico called the meeting to order and introduced Ward 4 City Councillor Brian Palmucci and City Council President Nina Liang who reviewed the ordinance submitted to City Council to create a Department of Social Justice and Equity. (Councilor-At-Large DiBona was unable to attend.) The department would help inform the community on the many programs already in place in the City of Quincy, create policy and new programs that increase equity and diversity opportunities. The department would serve as a resource to the Quincy Public Schools. There were a series of community listening events held by City Councillors this summer and this is an outgrowth of those events.

Mrs. Lebo asked about why this is different than a position that already exists in Constituent Services. Councillor Palmucci said this position would be a Director, so a peer to other City department leaders. Council President Liang said that education and training is an important component and assisting with relations with the public. Mrs. Lebo said that the position needs to be able to protect the anonymity of staff experience and Council President Liang agreed, there needs to be space for sharing and validation of personal experiences.

Mr. Santoro noted that Quincy Public Schools is concerned with employees being protected from anonymous complaints that they are unable to respond to. Councillor Palmucci said that it has to be a safe space for all to participate in the discussion and that the person would need be professional, spend time gathering information, and sensitive to local issues and concerns.

Mr. Andronico noted that the anonymous Instagram posts this summer identified staff members and there was no way to respond to the specifics. Superintendent Mulvey has reiterated that all reported incidents are investigated but the resolution may not always be publicly apparent. Council President Liang agreed that a transparent process for resolution is important.

Mr. Gutro thanked the City Councillors for their leadership on these issues; requested a copy of the ordinance. Mr. Gutro noted that establishing and appointing to this position is the Mayor’s prerogative, which might be difficult with the fiscal challenges ahead. Council President Liang agreed that this will be a challenging budget year, but hopes this will be a priority moving forward. Councillor Palmucci said that there is not an option to be unresponsive and Mayor Koch has been a partner to the City Council even when he does not agree with their position.

Mr. Santoro reiterated that Quincy Public Schools Policy is the purview of the School Committee. Mrs. Lebo suggested that the wording be changed to “collaborate” or something similar. Councillor Palmucci agreed that the position is a resource to the School Committee and would not be dictating Policy, Quincy Public Schools has been in the forefront of many of these issues and is one of the most welcoming resources for the city.

Mr. Andronico thanked City Council President Liang and City Councillor Palmucci for their leadership and collaboration on this issue; looks forward to future conversations.

Superintendent Mulvey reviewed that the planning is underway with VISIONS Inc. and the cross-functional QPS Equity Team and that Senior Director of Student Support Services Maura Papile is pursuing a grant opportunity for restorative justice. Ms. Papile reviewed that VISIONS is proposing to conduct a series of workshops and focus groups that are both interventions and assessments. Operations, policies, practices and cultural norms will be reviewed in forty focus groups; a cross-functional planning team is meeting regularly. Once the report is completed, decisions will need to be made about how to utilize the data, this should be a unifying process to take the district forward.

Restorative justice practices are an area of interest expressed from staff and parents, Ms. Papile is applying for a grant from Blue Cross-Blue Shield which would fund training over the next two years. Fifteen staff members from each high school would be trained and stipends would be offered. Teaching pro-social skills, interventions to support students, and managing difficult situations as a community are all included in the 30+ hours of training.

Mrs. Lebo said she would like to see teachers included in the training, seems to be geared toward administrators. Suggested that the training be offered to staff who would be champions who could train other staff. Ms. Papile said there are definitely interested teachers and there will be opportunities in the second year as well.

Mr. Santoro thanked Ms. Papile for her leadership, at Quincy High School, the team time could be utilized. For students, training in this area could be an alternative to suspension for students.

Mrs. Lebo said that the VISIONS proposal is more weighted to assessment and not enough intervention. Mrs. Lebo wants to be sure that there is opportunity to get the teachers be more involved, especially the teachers who have come forward to be champions. Ms. Papile feels that the parent and student focus groups will be a new opportunity and the restorative justice initiative is something that can be implemented first.

Mr. Mulvey said that the teacher representatives are part of the planning process and they will be an integral part of the implementation plan.

Mrs. Lebo suggested that the Citywide Parent Council Equity, Diversity & Inclusion Subcommittee be involved in the planning.

Mr. Andronico requested to see samples of similar reports provided by VISIONS for other communities, this will help inform considerations moving forward and the item will remain in the Equity, Diversity & Inclusion Subcommittee.

Superintendent Mulvey said that there is CARES Act funding available for the VISIONS proposal.

Mrs. Lebo made a motion to adjourn the Equity, Diversity & Inclusion Subcommittee meeting at 5:45 pm. Mr. Gutro seconded the motion and on a voice vote, the ayes have it.