School Committee Agenda: September 17, 2019

From the Office of the Executive Secretary to the School Committee

School Committee - Regular Meeting
September 17, 2019


1. Public Comment (3 Minutes):

2. Student School Committee Report:

3. Presentation of the Records for Approval:
• Special Meeting, Superintendent Evaluation, August 22, 2019
• Regular Meeting, September 3, 2019

4. Reconsiderations: None

5. Unfinished Business/Calendar:

#19-201 Joint Motion by Ms. Nolan and Mr. Kimbrough, whereas the School Committee passed an order related to reviewing school building namesakes relation to the slave trade and whereas the School Committee also wishes to understand if any school buildings are named for people who sought to oppress women, now therefore the School Committee ask that the historical review of ties to slavery include a review of ties of namesakes to the oppression of women. (8-6-19, McGovern)

6. Awaiting Reports:
C19-064 That the following be amended and referred to the Superintendent:
Whereas the School Committee worked to raise the level of instruction for all students through the Level Up initiative at CRLS; and
Whereas a recent Globe project on valedictorians documented a sobering and critically important question of whether high schools are preparing students for success: and
Whereas the recent report The Opportunity Myth by The New Teachers Project found that despite 71% of students in a national representative sample of audited classes met classroom expectations and succeeded on assignments, only 17% of those assignments were on grade level when evaluated; and
Whereas both the Valedictorian Project and The New Teachers Project identified the need for high expectations and intentional focus on rigorous curriculum, instruction and assignments as key to delivering on the promise of success in college and life; and
Whereas there were gaps by racial subgroups in performance on common assessment; and
Whereas nearly 1 in 3 CRLS students indicated that teachers do not have very high expectations of them; Therefore, the School Committee directs the Administration to evaluate the Level Up ELA classes, to ensure that the initiative is as successful as possible. The School Committee requests the Superintendent submits a report no later than the August 6, 2019 Regular Summer Meeting.

C19-181 That the following be adopted as amended:
That whereas bottled water is environmentally devastating, and
Whereas bottled water costs approximately 50 times more than city water, and
Whereas Cambridge's water routinely exceeds health and safety standards, and
Whereas the school district and the city have sought to reduce waste and encourage city water consumption over bottled water, and
Whereas the City Council passed an order recognizing this issue on January 28, 2019, be it ordered
That the district establish a policy that no district funds, unless necessary, may be used to purchase bottled water, and
That this policy be referred to the Superintendent for a report by the summer meeting, and
That this policy be communicated to all schools.

#19-205, Joint Motion by Ms. Nolan, Vice Chair Kelly and Mr. Fantini
That whereas the district has a commitment to all learners; and
Whereas the position of lead teacher for advanced learners has not had stable leadership for some time; and
Whereas the district has been reviewing protocols to address advanced learners needs; and
Whereas at times circumstances are such that students’ needs cannot be met in a classroom;
That the School Committee request, before the next school year begins, a report on recruitment efforts for the position, on supports for learners, including existing statistics on existing plans, and future updates to procedures, policies and protocols, including changing the existing system of relying on parents and guardians to identify students, which is inherently inequitable, and to ensure transparency and clarity, and under what circumstances a student may advance a grade.

C19-210 That the following be adopted as amended:
Due to legislation passed by the State Legislature that requests early screenings of students to identify if they have dyslexia,
That the Superintendent take appropriate steps to ensure that students are screened and that students who are identified receive appropriate and timely supports and that training and support for teachers is in place. Superintendent will report back on how the district will comply with the present law by the Regular meeting in November.
7. Superintendent’s Agenda:
7a. Presentations:
Dynamic Diversity Development…….....
Barbara Allen, Executive Director of Human Resources
Ramon DeJesus, Program Manager for Diversity Development

7b. CPS District Plan:

7c. Consent Agenda:

19-225 Day & Residential Services not Available from the Cambridge School Department

19-226 Contract Award: Everfi, Inc.: Professional Development

19-227 Contract Award: Tutoring Plus of Cambridge Inc.: Educational Services

19-228 Contract Award: Cambridge Housing Authority: Educational Services

19-229 Contract Award: Somerville Live Poultry Inc. DBA Mayflower Poultry Co.:
Supply & Delivery of Fresh Meat

19-230 Contract Award: Teaching & Learning Alliance: Professional Development

19-231 Contract Award: Van Pool Transportation: Student Transportation Services

19-232 Recommendation: Grant Award: FY20 Title III: English Language Acquisition for
Limited English (LEP) Students (SC20737)

19-233 Grant Award: Emergency Impact Aid for Homeless Students (SC20155)

19-234 Grant Award: FY20 McKinney Vento Homeless Students (SC20707)
8. Non-Consent Agenda:

9. School Committee Agenda (Policy Matters/Notifications/Requests for Information):
#19-235 Joint Motion by Ms. Nolan, Vice Chair Kelly, and Committee Member Dexter whereas current research and evidence related to vaping has documented the serious harmful health effects, including the possibility of lung blockage and death; and
Whereas increasing numbers of adolescents and young adults are using vaping products, which are readily available in our community;
That the School Committee requests the District Leadership add a health unit on the effects of vaping to the 9th grade health curriculum that explains the highly addictive effects of nicotine and lung damage caused by oils in vaping products. Additionally, the District Leadership will create an action plan that outlines the important public health measures that will be taken to protect our families, students, and staff.

#19-236 Motion by School Committee Member Dexter that whereas the Committee has expressed concern about the CPS practice of suspending students in grades preK-2, a practice abolished in some other districts, the Committee requests data from the administration from the 2017-2018 and 2018-2019 school years on the total number of preK-2nd grade students who were suspended one or more times in either or both of these years, with, if possible, specification of the number of these suspended prek-2nd grade students who were African American/Black or Latino boys. This data is requested by October 15, 2019.

#19-237 Motion by School Committee Member Dexter that whereas the School Committee has expressed ongoing concern about the CRLS practices of reducing grades for high school students who are frequently absent or tardy without accepted excuses (Attendance Violations), the School Committee requests data from the Administration from the first and second semesters of 2018-2019 on the total number of students whose grades were reduced due to Attendance Violations, as well as these grade reduction frequencies disaggregated by gender, race, income, ELL status, and disability status. This data is requested before October 15, 2019. The School Committee further requests that, going forward, this data be provided to the School Committee after each semester of the 2019-2020 school year, in order for the School Committee to evaluate the effect of the new Attendance Violation policy.

#19-238 Motion by Mr. Kimbrough, whereas the Cambridge Public Schools has created the strategic objective of creating stronger relationships with community partners and creating a more culturally competent workforce;
Be it resolved that the Cambridge Public Schools will work with DHSP and other non-profit organizations that the district gives financial assistance to create a policy where participation can lead to earning high school credit; and
Further, that the high school will look to create an after-school focus group around race and equity in which CRLS students and teachers can earn credit towards graduation and professional development points (PDP’s) with the desire to begin both opportunities beginning in the 20-21 school year.

#19-239 Motion by Ms. Nolan, whereas the School Committee has focused on providing support for schools in need; and Whereas Putnam Avenue Upper School (PAUS) has graduated a total of only 22 students in the last seven years who successfully completed Algebra in 8th grade, compared to an average of 132 students from the other Upper Schools - five times as many -who met that standard;
That the district explore implementing an intensive tutoring program at PAUS this school year in math.

#19-240 Motion by Ms. Nolan, that whereas there are sometimes circumstances that lead students to not be in school; and
Whereas students across the country are organizing a strike on September 20, 2019 to ask for action on the climate crisis;
That the School Committee direct the Administration to ensure no punitive measures be taken against students who choose to participate.
10. Resolutions (letters of congratulations, letters of condolence):

11. Announcements:

12. Late Orders:

13. Communications and Reports from City Officers:

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