School Committee Meeting Agenda: March 1, 2016

From the Office of the Executive Secretary to the School Committee

School Committee: Regular Meeting | March 1, 2016


1.    Public Comment (3 Minutes):

2.    Student School Committee Report:
3.    Presentation of the Records for Approval:  

  • Special Meeting  – February 2, 2016
  • Regular Meeting – February 2, 2016
  • Special Meeting – February 9, 2016

4.    Reconsiderations: None
5.    Unfinished Business/Calendar: None

6.    Awaiting Reports: None

7.    Superintendent’s Agenda:

7a. Presentations: None

7b. Innovation Agenda:

7c. Consent Agenda:

#16-32 Recommendation: Gifts/Miscellaneous Receipts
#16-33 Recommendation: Day & Residential Program Services not Available
From the Cambridge School Department
#16-34 Recommendation: Contract Award: NOVAtime Technology Inc.
Software & Maintenance for Time & Attendance System
#16-35 Recommendation: Contract Award: Center for Autism & Related Disorders Inc.:  Students Services
#16-36 Recommendation: Easter Seals Massachusetts: Students Services
8.    Non-Consent Agenda:

9.    School Committee Agenda
(Policy Matters/Notifications/Requests for Information):

#16-37, Motion by Mr. Fantini, that the Superintendent and the CRLS principal report back to the School Committee on the process by which guidance counselors and teachers do letters of recommendation for students applying to college. And further, to explain if there is any compensation for doing this work.

#16-38, Motion by Ms. Dexter, that whereas School Committee policy specifies, "It is the School Committee's intent to activate a sufficient number of positions to accomplish the school district's goals and objectives and to provide for the equitable staffing of each school building," it is requested that the Superintendent ensure equitable staffing for all students and an equitable workload for all teachers across all 12 CPS elementary schools.

Particular attention should be paid to the number of General Education teachers and paraprofessionals per student, classroom, and school, and the number of intervention teachers per JK-5 student who is at risk of falling behind grade level in reading, writing, or math. JK-3rd grade staffing decisions, in particular, should be research-based, taking into account the unique developmental needs of young children.

In addition, provisions for staff planning time should be equitable and should take into account the need for joint-planning time between General Education teachers, Special Educators, intervention teachers, and ELL specialists in schools with large numbers of students receiving these services.
(See Cambridge School Committee Policy Manual Section GCA.)

#16-39, Motion by Ms. Nolan, whereas "Opportunity" at CRLS includes reference to the many courses offered at the high school and whereas the district encourages students to take advantage of the opportunity to pursue an area more in-depth through “doubling up” in one year and whereas educationally doubling up in world language or math can help solidify student learning, and whereas for some students, elective courses are more engaging and meaningful than required courses; whereas most electives courses attract students with varying academic abilities; whereas some classes both elective and core academic are full; the School Committee requests that CRLS staffing for FY17 include enough teachers to ensure that all CRLS students have the opportunity to enroll in courses that match their unique interests and talents, while maintaining favorable class size and  allowing room for students who file for course changes after the first round of selections.  

#16-40, Motion by Ms. Nolan, whereas the Cambridge City Council discussed having the second Monday in October be designated Indigenous People’s Day, per an order introduced in fall of 2015 by Councillors Mazen and Benzan and whereas several universities including Brown and several cities including Seattle WA, St. Paul, MN and Portland OR celebrate that day as Indigenous People’s Day and whereas the contributions of immigrants including Italians should be commemorated, the School Committee requests that the district convene a group of staff and the CRLS student government to consider having the second Monday in October, a holiday in the school district, be renamed either Indigenous People’s Day or Indigenous People's and Immigrants Day. Further that the district report back to the School Committee by the end of this school year with a recommendation.  
(See City Council Policy Order Resolution Calendar item)

#16-41, Joint Motion by Mr. Harding and Ms. Kelly, whereas it is the desire of the School Committee to include world language in the elementary schools and whereas previous School Committees have called for the implementation of an elementary world language program and recognized the time limitations involved in the creation of such a program, the Superintendent and the Assistant Superintendents for Elementary Education and Curriculum and Instruction are directed to develop for the School Committee’s review a model for the implementation of a world language program beginning in the 2016-17 school year.

The model should include a recommendation for the curriculum and the program structure including such factors as to whether the program should be phased in or piloted.  Further that the recommendation from the Superintendent should include all impacts on the educational experience of the overall elementary program.  Further that the recommendation should be presented to the School Committee no later than the first meeting of December 2016.

#16-42, Superintendent Transition Planning Subcommittee Report, Subcommittee Members: Manikka Bowman, Chair; Alfred Fantini, Patricia Nolan
After engaging the superintendent transition planning subcommittee and Dr. Salim, the subcommittee is recommending that Dr. Salim use his remaining contracted transition days to start transition planning for his July 1st start date. We are recommending one contracted day be used for individual meetings with School Committee members. During these meetings, Dr. Salim will gather insights that will assist him with building a thoughtful entry plan. A second contracted transition day will be leveraged to meet with central administrative staff to plan for summer leadership meetings. The remaining contracted dates will be used for writing and completing his plan.

As part of Dr. Salim’s official entry in July, he will finalize the formal entry plan report and present the plan - including timeline for school visits, members of a transition team (team to possibly consist of outside stakeholders), and engaging stakeholders in late July. Dr. Salim will work to align the presentation of his entry plan findings with the budget planning process of the district. Findings from Dr. Salim’s entry plan work will be presented in January 2017.

Proposed Entry Planning Timeline:

April/ May       Meeting with individual School Committee Members
May/ June      Meetings with central administration
June               Leverage remaining contracted dates to complete entry plan
July                Formally present entry plan report at public meeting
January 17    Present findings from entry planning work to School Committee

#16-43, Report of the January 26, 2016 meeting of the Budget Sub-Committee Retreat (Committee of the whole)

#16-44, Report of the February 9, 2016 meeting of the Budget Sub-Committee Public Hearing (Committee of the whole)

10.    Resolutions (letters of congratulations, letters of condolence): None
11.    Announcements:

12.    Late Orders:

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