June 15, 2016 School Committee Meeting

Revised Agenda

Regular Meeting of the Quincy School Committee
Wednesday, June 15, 2016, 7:00 pm
Coddington Building

I. Approval of Minutes:

A. Regular Meeting Minutes for May 18, 2016

B. Executive Session Minutes for May 18, 2016

C. FY2017 Budget Public Hearing Minutes for June 1, 2016

II. Open Forum: 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. An individual may not exchange their time or yield to others.

III. Superintendent’s Report:

A. Inspire Quincy

B. Recognition: Special Education Director Judy Todd

C. Commissioner of Education Visit to Merrymount, Friday, June 17

D. Welcome to Kindergarten Parent Academy

E. NQHS Science Teacher to Antarctica

F. Summer Reading

G. Mentor Initiative Reflection

H. Bethany Program

I. Health Symposium and Partnership Events

J. High School Graduations

IV. Old Business:

A. FY2017 Quincy Public Schools Budget (Vote)

V. New Business:

A. Public Buildings Summer Projects Update - Mr. Cunniff, Mr. MacDonald, Mr. Murphy

B. South Shore Educational Collaborative Board (Vote) - Dr. DeCristofaro

C. Overnight Travel: NQHS AFJROTC to Leadership Encampment at Camp Edwards, Bourne, Massachusetts September 28, 2016 through October 2, 2016.

VI. Additional Business:

VII. Communications:

VIII. Reports of Subcommittees: Special Education: Mrs. Mahoney to report on the May 23, 2016 meeting.

IX. Executive Session: Contract Negotiations  

X. Adjournment:

Subcommittees of the School Committee


Budget & Finance

  1. Additional Funding Appropriation: Referred to Subcommittee at the September 30, 2015 School Committee meeting. With the reinstatement of the Full-Day Kindergarten Grant from DESE for Kindergarten Aides, there is an additional $250,000 available for one-time FY2016 expenses.

Facilities & Security

  1. President’s City Inn Referred to Subcommittee at the October 10, 2012 School Committee Meeting. Safety concerns have been expressed about this property that abuts the new Central Middle School. Current construction plans were reviewed at the March 18, 2014 Subcommittee Meeting and updates provided during the 2014-2015 school year.

  2. North Quincy High School Campus Expansion/Teele Field Project Referred at the January 22, 2014 School Committee Meeting. A presentation on the proposed enhancements will be scheduled.

  3. Faxon Field Equalization Pipe Referred at the October 14, 2015 School Committee meeting. Requesting information on the communications between the City of Quincy and Mass. DEP.

Health, Transportation & Safety

  1. Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports (PBIS) Referred to Subcommittee at the September 24, 2012 Special School Committee Meeting. Student Support Services working with elementary and middle schools to implement this initiative.

  2. Traffic Concerns at North Quincy High School Referred to Subcommittee at the March 5, 2014 School Committee Meeting. Concerns about East Squantum Street crosswalk/parking lot entrance.

  3. Solar Array Installation on School Roofs Referred from the Facilities & Security Subcommittee on September 10, 2014. Monitoring of the ongoing projects and the educational opportunities.

  4. Learn to Swim Referred at the September 10, 2014 Special School Committee Meeting. Monitoring the ongoing partnership between QPS and the South Shore YMCA.

  5. Farm to School Referred at the September 10, 2014 Special School Committee Meeting. Monitoring the Planning Grant rollout, a collaboration of QPS and the Planning Department.

  6. CPR Certification Referred from the Policy Subcommittee at the September 10, 2014 Special School Committee meeting.

  7. Before School Exercise Programs Referred at the September 10, 2014 Special School Committee meeting. Monitoring the implementation of these programs across QPS.

  8. Peer Mentoring for Grade 9 Students Referred at the September 29, 2015 Special School Committee meeting. Monitoring the implementation of this program at both high schools.


  1. Graduation Requirements Referred to Subcommittee at the September 7, 2011 School Committee Meeting and discussed at the October 11, 2011 School Policy Subcommittee. The discussion centered around adding a fourth year of Math as a graduation requirement; the issue is tabled until more is known about the impact of the new Common Core Standards on the Massachusetts frameworks.

  2. Advertising/Sponsorship Opportunities Referred at the June 13, 2012 School Committee Meeting. Review and discussion of amending the existing policy requested to explore the possibility of raising revenue by accepting advertising sponsorships.

  3. Review of High School Academic and Extracurricular Programs Referred at the November 13, 2013 School Committee Meeting. A comparison of the offerings at both schools to be analyzed to ensure equitable and parallel opportunities for all students at both facilities.

  4. Open Enrollment Referred at the October 8, 2014 School Committee meeting for review and discussion to focus on the timeline for placement decisions and communication to parents.  

  5. Middle School Grading System Referred at the December 10, 2014 School Committee meeting for review and discussion.

  6. 2016-2017 School Year Calendar Referred at the April 8, 2015 School Committee meeting.

  7. Weather Cancellation Schoolwork Referred at the April 8, 2015 School Committee meeting and shared with the Teaching and Learning Subcommittee. Exploring options for creating Policy for schoolwork during extended periods of weather-related school cancellations.

  8. Concussion Policy Referred at the May 6, 2015 School Committee meeting; as required by law, the policy must be reviewed and amended or reaffirmed every two years.

  9. Voter Registration at the High Schools Referred at the September 16, 2015 School Committee meeting for discussion of implementation with the City Clerk’s Office.

  10. 2016-2017 School Committee Meeting Calendar Referred at the January 13, 2016 School Committee meeting.

  11. School Committee Policy Book Referred at the January 13, 2016 School Committee meeting for review and updating as needed.

  12. QPS Employment Opportunities Referred at the May 18, 2016 School Committee meeting for further discussion on the advertising and hiring process for open positions.

Special Education

  1. Student Information for Substitute Teachers Originally referred at the January 17, 2007 School Committee Meeting. Aspen Student Information System Special Education module reports will be utilized to share information with substitute teachers beginning in 2015-2016 school year.

Rules, Post Audit & Oversight

Teaching and Learning

  1. Advanced Program Pathways Referred at the May 20, 2015 School Committee Meeting to review opportunities to challenge above-level students at all grades.

  2. Enrollment Data/Class Size: Referred at the October 14, 2015 School Committee meeting for further review and discussion.

  3. Resolution on Student Assessment: Referred at the October 28, 2015 School Committee meeting for review and discussion.


Sterling Building Committee

Sterling/Point Webster Grade 5

Created at the September 10, 2014 Special School Committee meeting to review issues related to Grade 5 being located in middle school buildings.

School District Maps

Created at the September 10, 2014 Special School Committee meeting to review issues related to school district maps.


Quincy, Massachusetts – June 15, 2016
Regular Meeting of the Quincy School Committee

Regular Meeting

A regular meeting of the Quincy School Committee was held on Wednesday, June 15, 2016 at the Coddington Building. The Superintendent called the roll and present were Mr. James DeAmicis, Mrs. Kathryn Hubley, Ms. Barbara Isola, Mayor Thomas Koch, Mrs. Emily Lebo, Mrs. Anne Mahoney, and Mr. Paul Bregoli, Vice Chair.

Vice-Chair Presiding

Also present were: Dr. Richard DeCristofaro, Secretary; Ms. Laura Owens, Clerk; Mrs. Rita Bailey, Mrs. Catherine Carey, Mrs. Donna Cunningham, Mr. Gary Cunniff, Mr. Michael Draicchio, Ms. Julie Graham, Ms. Beth Hallett, Mr. Richard Kelly, Mrs. Elaine Keohane, Mr. Walter MacDonald, Mrs. Joanne Morrissey, Mr. James Mullaney, Deputy Superintendent Kevin Mulvey, Mr. Kevin Murphy, Mrs. Maura Papile, Mrs. Susan Paquette, Mrs. Erin Perkins, Ms. Madeline Roy, Mr. Keith Segalla, Ms. Judy Todd; Quincy Education Association President Allison Cox.


There was a moment of silence for the victims in this past weekend’s terrorist shooting in Orlando. Dr. DeCristofaro also remembered former Quincy High School teachers Jane Southwick (Spanish & Latin) and Mary Rose Sullivan Myrick (Fashion), and Agnes Pettiti, secretary at Sterling Junior High School for 34 years.


Regular Meeting Minutes Approved 5.18.16

Mrs. Hubley made a motion, seconded by Mr. DeAmicis, to approve the Regular Meeting minutes for May 18, 2016. On a voice vote, the ayes have it.

Executive Session Minutes Approved 5.18.16

Mr. DeAmicis made a motion, seconded by Ms. Isola, to approve the Executive Session minutes for May 18, 2016. On a voice vote, the ayes have it.

Public Hearing Minutes Approved 6.1.16

Ms. Isola made a motion, seconded by Mrs. Hubley, to approve the Public Hearing minutes for June 1, 2016. On a voice vote, the ayes have it.


Open Forum

Ms. Debby Nabstedt and Mrs. Littif spoke in favor of reinstating the Special Education assist classes for Grades 11-12 at Quincy High School.


Superintendent's Report Dr. DeCristofaro opened the Superintendent’s Report with recognition of high school Track & Field athletes Nick Kelly (NQHS, Javelin); Nathan Sleiman (NQHS, Hurdles, Triple Jump, Pentathalon); Mike Munroe (QHS, Shot); and Nicole Jorgensen (QHS, Javelin).

Dr. DeCristofaro then recognized retiring members of the Superintendent’s Leadership Team: Food Services Director Joanne Morrissey, 23 years with Quincy Public Schools, has done so much over the years, grant-writing, training, implementing new nutritional regulations, participating on the Health & Wellness teams. Focus on serving students, advocate for children’s health, knowledgeable and dedicated, strong work ethic. Mrs. Lebo said Mrs. Morrissey touches more students lives on a daily basis, every day and the summer too. Ms. Isola thanked Mrs. Morrissey for her thorough knowledge of the complex federal and state guidelines, especially chocolate milk. Mrs. Mahoney said Mrs. Morrissey’s impact on students’ lives year round will be missed.

Director of Special Education Judy Todd, a Quincy Public Schools staff member for 29 years, 14 as Director of Special Education. Always an advocate for Special Education children and creator of great programming that impacted many students and families. Has left a legacy of dedication, love for each and every student in Quincy Public Schools.

Ms. Isola thanked Ms. Todd, always supportive and responsive. Mrs. Lebo thanked Ms. Todd for the phenomenal staff she has hired. Recently attended the Special Olympics, the staff was joyously working with the children. Mrs. Mahoney thanked Ms. Todd for her tireless efforts, very difficult job, high profile, she has much to be proud of. Mr. Bregoli thanked Ms. Todd for their years of working together professionally and all that she has done for Quincy Public Schools students.

Dr. DeCristofaro reviewed the Welcome to Kindergarten Parent Academy which was attended by over 150 parents. Curriculum and health information was shared with parents, tips on preparing students for the transition. Information will be posted on the Quincy Public Schools website.

Commissioner of Education Mitchell Chester will be visiting the Merrymount Elementary School on Friday, June 17. Merrymount is being recognized for 2015 MCAS achievement on narrowing the achievement gap and strong growth.

The Mentor program recently celebrated the end of another successful year. 40 mentors and mentees met every other month over the course of the year. The National Association of Government Employees (NAGE) supported the mentoring program with a donation of $10,000.

NQHS Biology, Zoology, and Marine Science teacher Cara Pekarcik will be one of 14 teachers traveling to the Antarctic in September on a PolarTREC expedition.

Recent Quincy School~Community Partnership events included the Community Service Learning Breakfast where over 150 students were recognized. High School All-Stars were: Samantha Caldwell, Hailey Houlihan, Emily Le, Justin Le, Marisa McGue, Patrick Tran (North Quincy High School) and Vanessa DeMore, Robert Hill, Carmen Huang, Brendan Kaliban, Jake Louzan, Declan Mayo, Nyasha Rankins, Jia Xen (Quincy High School).

Summer Reading information for Elementary, Middle, and High School students has been posted on the Quincy Public Schools website and shared with the Thomas Crane Public Library.

The recent Quincy Public Schools Robotics Challenge for Grades 5-8 saw 240 students participating, along with coaches, principals, and teachers from each elementary and middle school. Thanks to Edward Smith, Keith Segalla, Mike Marani, and the many high school student volunteers.

The Bethany Program for Quincy Teen Mothers will be on hiatus due to lack of enrollment for 2016-2017; the program’s five current students graduated this year. After 38 years of service, over 300 teen mothers and babies have been mentored. Thanks to Coordinator Noreen O’Connell, the staff, and board for their efforts on behalf of the program’s students.

At this week’s high school graduations, a total of 670 students graduated on two perfect evenings. Thanks to the principals, assistant principals, Quincy Police Department, Parks Department and Kevin Murphy


Old Business

FY2017 QPS Budget (Vote)

Mrs. Lebo made a motion to approve the FY2017 Quincy Public Schools Budget. Mrs. Hubley seconded the motion and on a roll call vote, the ayes have it 7-0.


New Business

FY2016 Budget Transfers (Vote)

Mr. Mullaney introduced the year-end funding transfers for FY2016. Deficits in the Natural Gas, Screening & Medical, Teacher Professional Discretionary; and Transportation – Outside Vendors, $234,000 in total will be covered by transfers from accounts with surplus funds.

Mayor Koch made a motion to approve the year-end funding transfers for FY2016. Mrs. Hubley seconded the motion and on a roll call vote, they ayes have it 7-0,

Mrs. Lebo asked if the FY2016 budget has been completely expended. Mr. Mullaney said there are still outstanding salary payments to be made before the fiscal year ends on June 30, 2016.


New Business

Public Buildings Summer Project Update

Director of Gary Cunniff presented an update on Public Buildings projects scheduled to begin this summer. The Massachusetts School Building Authority (MSBA) has invited Quincy to participate in the Accelerated Repair Program and replace the boilers at Atherton Hough, Beechwood Knoll, Merrymount, and Wollaston Elementary Schools. Total project costs are estimated at $1,000,000, with expected reimbursement at 70%; the project will be completed in Summer 2017.

Under the Mayor’s proposed Capital Improvement Plan, major upgrades to the North Quincy High School Science Labs are proposed with acquisition of all new furniture & equipment planned. The next step would be to hire a designer. In addition, plans are underway to replace the North Quincy High School gymnasium bleachers and reconfigure the Hunt Street lobby.

Other proposed capital plan items include a major upgrade in the Lincoln Hancock pool area for lighting and converting the pool heating source to geothermal. Also at Lincoln Hancock, converting from electric heat to a gas-fired system will be explored. The Broad Meadows heating system, partly upgraded in 2007, would completed. At Quincy High School, retrocommissioning to tweak the performance of the HVAC continues to reach maximum efficiency. Wollaston Elementary School drainage will be addressed in the basement and first floor.

Mrs. Hubley asked for clarification of the NQHS Science Lab project. Mr. Cunniff said there are 45,000 square feet of science classroom labs that were installed in 1977. In order to bring the labs up to current teaching standards, plumbing will need to upgraded and all new equipment installed. The first step in the process will be to engage a design firm to work on planning the lab with the NQHS Science staff. Mrs. Lebo noted that the Massachusetts Life Sciences grant is available for science lab construction, funds will need to be matched by the city.

Continuing with proposed Capital Improvement plan items, at the Parker Elementary School, replacing the front stairs is proposed. At the Montclair Elementary School, the nurses bathroom will be replaced.

Mrs. Mahoney asked if these are all Capital Improvement Plan projects. Mr. Cunniff said there would primarily design planning this summer.

Mayor Koch said that the new five-year Capital Improvement Plan was recently shared with City Council, representing hundreds of millions of dollars of investment in city buildings. The first appropriation is $19.5 million, and will address some mechanical and structural issues in the schools. At the recent Finance Subcommittee meeting, the equipment and paving expenditures were approved. These will go to before the full City Council on June 27, 2016. This is a rolling bond, balancing needs against available funding.

The costs for the North Quincy Science laboratory and gymnasium improvements will be borne by repurposing the contingency MSBA window & door funding for the projects completed last summer. Most of the work planned for this summer is design and planning.

Mrs. Mahoney said that she appreciates the clarification on the funding. Mrs. Mahoney requested a reconciliation of the bonds and the projects. There are other opportunities for funding as Mrs. Lebo pointed out, and the more information available will allow School Committee to be informed about the project schedules and funding sources.

Mayor Koch asked for clarification on Mrs. Mahoney’s request for reconciliation on bonds. Mayor Koch said that once the preliminary engineering for these projects is completed, additional details about scheduling will be shared. For the MSBA projects, we are required to fund the total costs, including contingency funding. When projects come in under budget, the additional funds appropriated may be repurposed for other capital projects.

Mrs. Mahoney said that when Parks Department Director Christopher Cassani presented to School Committee in May, she requested a funding reconciliation that has not been shared for Teel Field. Mayor Koch said that the last time he brought up the Teel Field project, Mrs. Mahoney objected. Mayor Koch said the city has an action plan to address long-held needs for the city buildings owned by all taxpayers in the city.

Mrs. Lebo asked about the sewerage issue at Beechwood Knoll. Mr. Cunniff said one issue was permanently addressed last summer in the area of the principal’s office. Mr. Cunniff said there is a developing issue in the older wing of the Beechwood Knoll building. Mr. Cunniff said the second issue at Beechwood Knoll can be temporarily maintained mechanically, but it does eventually need to be replaced.

Mrs. Mahoney asked for a master list of projects and a long-term schedule for the list of school-based items contained in the Capital Improvement Plan.

Walter MacDonald reviewed the status of the current MSBA projects. The Merrymount roof project will be completed this summer, including a new PVC roof and pre-cast stone caps to address water infiltration. The parapet wall will be repointed and a skylight will be replaced. A rooftop HVAC unit will also be replaced, along with all roof exhaust fans. Construction will begin Monday, June 27, and a pre-construction walk-through was held on Tuesday, June 14. All contractors and subcontractors are CORI checked, all abutters are notified of construction dates. Substantial project completion is scheduled prior to the opening of school, with the installation of the HVAC unit in September.

The Beechwood Knoll roof, windows & door, and ADA upgrades project has been deferred to Summer 2017, as there was not enough lead time for window manufacturing. The project will be re-bid in September and Public Buildings is looking forward to more competitive bids with the longer project schedule.

For Sterling Middle School, the complete Schematic Design was submitted to the MSBA. The next step is the Project Scope & Budget meeting scheduled for June 22. Test borings have been completed on the Sterling Building site, results were good, no indication of ledge issues.

A Core Program Statement of Interest was submitted for Squantum Elementary School, with the expectation that the project will not move into the pipeline until Sterling is completed.

Mrs. Lebo complimented the process of the City and Quincy Public Schools working together to submit to the MSBA. Quincy has certainly benefitted from Tim Cahill’s establishment of the MSBA.

Mr. Bregoli thanked Mr. Cunniff and Mr. MacDonald for the extensive update, it takes planning and patience to do things the right way.


New Business

South Shore Educational Collaborative Board (Vote)

Mayor Koch made a motion to for Superintendent DeCristofaro to continue to represent the Quincy Public Schools on the Board of the South Shore Educational Collaborative. Ms. Isola seconded the motion and on a roll call vote, the ayes have it, 7-0.


New Business

Overnight Travel

Mayor Koch made a motion to approve the overnight travel of North Quincy High School AFJROTC to the Leadership Encampment at Camp Edwards, Bourne, Massachusetts from September 28 to October 2, 2016. The motion was seconded by Mrs. Hubley and on a voice vote, the ayes have it.



Mrs. Mahoney announced a vigil at the United First Parish Church on June 16 for victims of Orlando.

Mrs. Hubley announced the PorchFest Quincy to be held on Saturday, June 18. This is a free community event being held in the Wollaston and Squantum neighborhoods in the afternoon and evening.


Reports of Subcommittees

Mr. Bregoli noted that all Subcommittee meeting minutes are posted online at www.quincypublicschools.com.

Special Education Subcommittee

Mrs. Mahoney reviewed the Special Education Subcommittee meeting minutes from May 23, 2016. The High School Special Education pathways were presented, as well as the Landmark Writing Program used in the Language Development classes in Grades 1-8. As a follow up, Mrs. Mahoney would like to address the differences between the Special Education programs at both high schools.

Subcommittee Meeting Minutes Approved

The meeting minutes for the May 23, 2016 Special Education Subcommittee were approved as amended.


Executive Session

Mayor Koch made a motion for School Committee to go to Executive Session for the purpose of contract negotiations at 8:45 pm. Ms. Isola seconded the motion and on a roll call vote, the ayes have it, 7-0. Mr. Bregoli noted that School Committee would be reconvening after Executive Session.


School Committee returned to regular session at 9:00 pm.

MOA with QPS Secretarial Unit (Vote)

Mr. DeAmicis made a motion to approve the Memorandum of Agreement between the Quincy School Committee and the Quincy Public Schools Secretarial Unit. Mrs. Hubley seconded the motion and on a roll call vote, the ayes have it, 7- 0.

MOA with QEA Unit C (Vote)

Ms. Isola made a motion to approve the Memorandum of Agreement between the Quincy School Committee and the Quincy Education Association, Unit C. Mrs. Lebo seconded the motion and on a roll call vote, the ayes have it, 7-0.

MOA with Painters & Allied Trades (Custodial) Unit B

Mrs, Hubley made a motion to approve the Memorandum of Agreement between the Quincy School Committee and the Painters & Allied Trades, Unit B (QPS Custodians). Ms. Isola seconded the motion and on a roll call vote, the ayes have it 7-0.



Mr. DeAmicis made a motion to adjourn for the evening at 9:15 p.m. The motion was seconded by Mrs. Hubley and on a voice vote, the ayes have it.