Sept. 29, 2010 School Committee Meeting


Regular Meeting of the Quincy School Committee
September 29, 2010

7:00 p.m.
City Council Chambers

I. Approval of Minutes: Regular Session minutes for September 15, 2010.

II. Superintendent’s Report:

A. Amelio Della Chiesa Room Dedication - October 3, 2:00 p.m.

B. City Lab Visits

C. Professional Development for Administrators (NISL)

III. Open Forum: (7:15 p.m.) An opportunity for community input regarding the Quincy Public Schools. After giving his or her name and address, each speaker may make a presentation of no more than four minutes to the School Committee.

IV. Old Business

A. Update on building projects, renovations, and construction: Mr. Murphy to report.

B. Update on the New Quincy High School: Mrs. Dwyer to report.

C. Update on Central: Mrs. Bragg and Mrs. Mahoney to report.

V. New Business:

A. New Central Middle School Site Selection Vote: Mayor Koch and City Solicitor Timmins to present

B. Former Quincy High School: Mayor Koch to present.

C. The New Quincy High School: Closing out Process – Mr. James Anderson, Tishman Construction.

D. Out of Country/State Travel: Atlantic Middle School to Camp Burgess. See Attachment A.

E. North Quincy High School to New Hampshire: See Attachment B.

VI. Additional Business:

VII. Communications:

VIII. Hearings:

IX. Reports of Special Committees:

X. Executive Session:

XI. Adjournment:

Subcommittees of the School Committee

Subcommittee Date Referred Business Pending
Budget & Finance
Mahoney/Bragg/Lebo 3/29/2008 Bus Rental Fees
  3/29/2008 Building Rental Fees
  10/7/2009 Half Time Teachers
  9/15/2010 Full Day Kindergarten
  9/15/2010 Opportunities & Challenges
  9/15/2010 Free & Reduced Lunch
  9/15/2010 Short & Long Term Goals
School Facilities Management    
Dwyer/Lebo/McCarthy Major Building Projects  
  3/4/98 QHS/Central/Sterling Building Plans
  10/20/2004 ADA Report
  9/7/2005 Alternative Plans for Central Middle School
  2/8/2006 Conservation
  4/9/2008 Track
  3/3/2010 Coddington Hall
Health, Safety & Security    
McCarthy/Isola/Dwyer 3/17/2010 North Quincy Traffic Intersection
  3/26/2008 Increase School Breakfast Participation
School Policy    
Bragg/Isola/Dwyer 3/11/2009 MS Interim Letters
  3/11/2009 Naming of QPS schools/places/etc.
  12/16/2009 School Tardiness Policy
  6/10/2010 Waivers
  9/15/2010 Attendance Tardy Policy with High School principals
  9/15/2010 CPR/ADE Training
  9/15/2010 Students Use of Electronics
  9/15/2010 Open Enrollment Policy
  9/15/2010 Anti-Bullying Policy
Special Education    
Lebo/McCarthy/Mahoney 1/17/2007 Emergency Information Form
  1/17/2007 Substitute Teachers for SPED
  3/21/2007 Implementation of IEPs
  9/24/2008 INSPIRE Initiative
Rules, Post Audit & Oversight    
Isola/Mahoney/Bragg 10/29/2008 Faxon Field
Channel 22    
Mahoney/McCarthy 10/17/2007 Encourage greater use of



Quincy, Massachusetts - September 29, 2010
Regular Meeting of the Quincy School Committee


A regular meeting of the Quincy School Committee was held on Wednesday, September 29, 2010 in the City Council Chambers, City Hall. Present were: Mr. Dave McCarthy, Mrs. Emily Lebo, Ms. Barbara Isola, Mrs. Jo-Ann Bragg, Mrs. Elaine Dwyer, Mrs. Anne Mahoney and Mayor Thomas P. Koch, Vice Chairman.

Chairman Presiding

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The Superintendent called the roll and all members were present. Also present were: Dr. Richard DeCristofaro, Secretary; Mrs. Tefta Burrelli, Clerk; Messrs. Mullaney, Draicchio, Mulvey, Murphy and Keith Segalla; Ms. Roberts, Tenaglia, Todd, and Hughes. Mr. Mike Ellis, QEA Vice President and Ms. Tracey Christello, Citywide.

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The Committee observed a moment of silence for Mr. Barbara Cunniff and Mr. Tom Nestor who recently passed away.

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Reg. Meeting Approved 9/15/2010

On a motion by Mrs. Bragg, seconded by Mr. McCarthy, the Committee approved the regular session minutes for September 15, 2010. The ayes Mins. have it.

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Supts. Report

The Center for Physical & Occupational Therapy dedication for Carol Shiffer at the Amelio Della Chiesa Early Childhood Ctr. will be held on Sunday, October 3, 2010 at 2:00 p.m.

Gift/Squantum School

The Committee received a letter on behalf of the Squantum Elementary School to recognize and thank the Major Theatre Equipment Corp. for their outstanding work and generous donation of time and materials to renovating the stage area at Squantum Elementary School.

The Committee received a booklet Career Preparation Guide from Keith Segalla for Marketing and Promotions of QPS Career and Technical Education programs.

The Committee received a schedule of lockdowns for all the school from Mr. Michael Draicchio. This is done twice a year.

Nat. School Leadership Program

Mrs. Colleen Roberts spoke to the National School Leadership Program. The Department of Elementary and Secondary Education has been working with MISSLE to provide leadership training to school district leaders. The effort is moving into its fifth year. It is a heavily researched and tested program designed to assist districts with leadership development efforts. The intent is to build leadership capacity, increase recruitment and retention to improve student achievement. Title I school principals and assistant principals, team administrators and central office administrators were invited and encouraged to attend. Four schools are represented with two of our administrators and Ms. Roberts attending. Topics for this program include the educational challenge, the principal as a strategic thinker, foundation of effective learning, leadership in Excellence, and other topics as well. It is provided over an 18 month period. These courses are paid for by the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education through federal Title I funds.

City Lab @ BU

For the past 10 years. Quincy eighth grade students have participated in a fully equipped bio-technology laboratory program based out of BU School of Medicine called City Lab. Eighth graders and their teachers spend a full day on campus in the technology labs exploring topics in health disease through an inquiry-based methodology. City Lab offers six activities to the students to participate in. Each investigation pre lab activities worked on in school laboratory activities and post lab activities are performed at BU. The City Lab program is an annual highlight for eighth graders. This is at “no cost” for our students.

At the next meeting, the Superintendent will be discussing MCAS AYP, class size, schedules, official October 1 enrollment and transportation.

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Open Forum

As no one wished to be heard at the Open Forum, the Committee went on with the business at hand.

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Bldg. Update

Maintenance is busy with conversion from cooling to heating modes. Boiler repairs were made at Broad Meadows, Central, and Atherton Hough. Electricians are installing more security cameras in schools working with Mike Draicchio. They completed phase I for a computer lab at Atlantic, scheduled a rental of 50’ lift for four days, to work on walls around Wollaston Squantum, Point Webster parapet/wall repairs, tech labs are all finished at North Quincy. Ceiling tiles at North Quincy High are finished and at the Early Childhood Center they installed a new area rug and painted walls for the new room which was being dedicated for Carol Shiffer.

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QHS Bldg. Committee

The Quincy High School Building Committee met last Friday and received a construction update. They will be working on a combined punch list for the school committee to review in the next few weeks. Training for the audio visual equipment in the Auditorium was held for staff. We are looking at more cameras for outside the building. While driving by the new high school this past Sunday, Mrs. Dwyer counted 25 skate boarders on the courtyard and stairs. She asked the Superintendent to meet with the Police Chief and see if there are any penalties. The Superintendent will come back with a plan to keep skate boarders off the property.

Mr. McCarthy inquired about the landscaping around the parking lot. The Russell Park parking lot is all weeds instead of grass. Mr. Eugene Caruso explained that they have put down some hydro seed but it hasn’t taken. They will be working on that area. However, it will not look like the front of the building.

Mrs. Mahoney inquired about the rocks washing away on the Coddington side parking area. Mr. Caruso said that is stone dust and should solidify with the rain.

Mrs. Dwyer wants a clear line where the grass ends and the parking lot begins on Coddington St. She wants it delineated that there is a sidewalk. Mr.Caruso will look into curbing.

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CMS Property

Mr. Jim Timmins, City Solicitor, passed out a map of the land relative to new construction for the new Central Middle School. Discussions continue in a good way for St. Ann. ENC has a coffee shop on this land. They will continue to proceed with ENC, acquire St. Ann, the chiropractor’s office and two small homes. He reviewed an aerial plan of the property. He asked the for the committee to vote to approve the acquisition of the parcels, approve the site and construction of a new Central Middle School at this site. He will come back to the Committee with site plans. This vote is simply for acquisition.

Mr. McCarthy asked if we were no longer after the motel or the car wash. Mr. Timmins answered that the Mayor has reached an accord with St. Ann. If the City took the businesses they would have to pay for them and pay to relocate the businesses to another site. This would be more expensive than taking St. Ann.

The Church had decided that the Sacred Heart property was in better shape for their school. As soon that decision was made, the Mayor contacted St. Ann to look at the property. He didn’t ask before because it was an emotional issue. The Catholic Counsel met and offered to sell the whole property. We are almost in agreement with the price. The church doesn’t pay taxes. The other businesses pay taxes and this is a better spot. The building would be demolished. Mr. Timmins said he didn’t have any values done yet. He has asked the appraisers to come in. If they can’t come in with an agreement on value they could take it by eminent domain.

Mrs. Mahoney stated that these sites have been discussed forever and the Committee would like to know the cost of the property. Mr. Timmins answered that two properties are commercial. He has been working on the assessments. Vision Appraisal has these on their website. The members asked for an approximate cost. They didn’t feel comfortable voting on the property without an estimated cost of the properties. Mr. Timmins answered that the cost was not within their jurisdiction and that their focus is on the academic site. The role of the School Committee is to approve the site. In terms of the cost, this is an issue for the City Council and the Mayor. He did not want to discuss it publically. Mrs. Mahoney asked to go into Executive Session to be appraised of the costs. Mr. Timmins said he would not. It was Mr. Timmins opinion that because the School Committee does not have a role in valuation issues, they cannot go into executive session. They would be considering something they don’t have any jurisdiction over.

Mr. Timmins stated they did not have an estimated value. Mrs. Mahoney said she was going to table this vote until we can have that executive session.

Mr. Timmins stated that the car wash could be around $3 million plus relocation fee. We would have to move his business out to Waltham. The motel would cost considerably more than that. The ENC site is going to stay. The St. Ann property is valued at $8.3 million but $5.5 million is the building which does not warrant that sort of value. Neither of the two homes in today’s market is worth more than half million dollars. We think the acquisition is going to be less because there won’t be any relocation fee. Tishman will do a demolition survey to see about asbestos.

Mrs. Bragg asked about relocating the “Egg and I.” Also she has a concern about the school being so close to the motel. She asked about a buffer between the school and the motel.

Mrs. Lebo also expressed concern with the motel next to the school. It is not the most attractive place and she has a concern with some of the stuff going on in the motel. Mayor Koch said there will be plantings and fences. Ms. Isola asked the Superintendent to check with St. Ann and the Police Dept. to find out if there have been any claims from St. Ann.

Mrs. Dwyer said if the Committee had concerns with the motel, perhaps the most prudent thing to do would be to take the motel also. She prefers to wait until the next School Committee meeting to vote. She didn’t feel confident enough to vote now.

Mayor Koch said he had walked the site with Catherine Cravens and she expressed no concerns with the motel.

Mrs. Bragg said there had been a previous vote that needs to be rescinded and approve the site on the next agenda.

Mrs. Mahoney would like an inquiry to the Police station regarding any incidents at St. Ann with street crossings.

Mr. Timmins suggested scheduling meetings with pairs of members to go over the site.

Mr. Jim Anderson gave the Committee the steps that will be taken to build the new school -- site acquisition, execute agreement with the architect, a feasibility study, schematic design, board vote from the MSBA to approve the design, procure a funding agreement, funding agreement goes to the city, design development, and construction.

Mayor Koch stated the quicker we move, the safer it will be for students in the City. He stressed that he will not take the motel or the car wash.

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Old QHS Building

Mr. Gary Cunniff presented an overview, assessment and alternatives for the existing Quincy High School building. This is an old building with many safety issues and not in compliance with safety codes. It would have no parking spaces. Renovating the building would cost around $53 million, partial demolition $36 million plus $6 million for the gym rear section. It would cost $6 million to demolish the building.

Old QHS to Subcommittee

Mrs. Bragg referred this to the Facilities Management Subcommittee.

Mrs. Bragg asked for a copy of memo from Jim Anderson regarding the MOA. She asked if the partial renovation would limit us with the Historical Commission? Mr. Cunniff answered that if there is no money available, the City can’t be made to renovate. She asked for any information about the historic part of this.

Mr. Cunniff stressed that the Committee has to make a decision. We have to have a plan of action and file that. If it is decided to tear down the building, they wouldn’t want to pay for mothballing.

With regarding to Coddington Hall, the Mayor, the Superintendent and Mr. Cunniff walked through Coddington Hall during the summer. It is the Mayor’s intention to move the school administration to that building.

Coddington Hall to Subcommittee

Mr. McCarthy put Coddington Hall into Subcommittee.

Mayor Koch said he has no money to renovate the old Quincy High School. In the end, he will probably demolish it when school is out of session.

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QHS Construction

Mr. Jim Anderson reviewed a listing of the items remaining on construction. Mr. McCarthy said Kitridge has a lot of items to complete. There were some back items that might take a lot longer. Mr. McCarthy said he would like to walk through the building with the list. He asked if he can finish this out by the end of the Year. Mr. Anderson answered yes.

The Superintendent thanked Mr. Caruso for all his work and that it has been a pleasure working with him.

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Travel AMS to Camp Burgess

On a motion by Ms. Isola, seconded by Mrs. Dwyer, the Committee approved a trip for Atlantic Middle School to go to Camp Burgess, from June 7, 2011 to June 10, 2011. The ayes have it.


On a motion by Mrs. Bragg, seconded by Mr. McCarthy, the Committee approved a trip for North Quincy High School to go to the University of New Hampshire on November 3, 2010. The ayes have it.

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Mayor’s Golf Tournament

Mrs. Mahoney recognized that the Mayor is having a charitable golf tournament coming up. The first year the money went to fuel assistance, and last year the Wollaston Theatre on behalf of Street Works. Mrs. Mahoney requested the money from the golf tournament come back to the Quincy Public Schools.

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Educational Commission

Mrs. Bragg is resigning from the Quincy Educational Fund Board and Ms. Isola will take her place. Since 2003, they have given back $31,000 to the Quincy Public Schools. Right now, there is $6,688 in the fund.

On Friday, October 15 at the Sons of Italy hall there will be a fund raisers for the Special Education Department.

On Thursday, October 7 at 4:00 p.m. there will be a Policy Subcommittee meeting to review the Anti-Bullying Policy.

On Monday, October 4 at 4:00 p.m. there will be a Health, Safety, Security and Transportation Subcommittee meeting to review all our transportation.

On Wednesday, October 6 at 7:00 p.m. there will be a Special Education Subcommittee meeting.

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Budget Subcommittee Mrs. Mahoney reports

Mrs. Mahoney reviewed the minutes of the last Budget Subcommittee meeting which was held on September 15. Mr. Mullaney went through the budget to date. There are two sources of stimulus money coming in—$1.3 million for the educational jobs program that money can be spent anytime going back to August 2010 up until the first quarter of 2012. The $101,000 SFSF Funds money can be spent any time this fiscal year or the first quarter of FY2012. The Superintendent will come back with recommendations in the areas of the budget with short term and a longer financial picture so that we can evaluate the best way to proceed with these additional funds.

On a motion by Ms. Isola, seconded by Mr. McCarthy, the Committee approved the Budget Subcommittee minutes. The ayes have it.

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Leaves of Absence

The Committee noted the following leaves of absence:

Heather Crofts Holet


The Committee noted the following appointment:

Speech Pathologist: Tracy Razzano

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Mrs. Mahoney removed Bus Rental Fees and Building Rental fees from the Budget & Finance Subcommittee.

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On a motion by Mrs. Bragg, seconded by Mr. McCarthy, the Committee voted to adjourn for the evening at 9:55 p.m. There was no Executive Session. On a roll call vote, the motion passed unanimously 7-0.