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September 21, 2022

Minutes of the

Monson School Committee

Regular Business Meeting

September 21, 2022

Hybrid Model


Members of the public were able to participate virtually in this meeting at https://us06web.zoom.us/j/86984448222 Meeting ID: 869 8444 8222


Present (In-person): Chair Colleen Flynn; Vice Chair Alison Morgan; Committee Member Kathryn Peterson; Committee Member Jamie Murphy; Superintendent Dr. Cheryl Clarke; Director of Business and Operations Leah Zippin; Director of Special Education Colette Bidus; Director of Curriculum and Instruction Katherine Watts; Granite Valley School Principal Joseph Trivisonno; Monson High School Principal Matthew Sullivan; Monson High School Assistant Principal Katie Czarniecki and Recording Secretary Karen Methe


Present (Remote): Secretary Emily Graves-Harrison and Granite Valley School Assistant Principal Myriah Hudak


Note: This meeting was recorded by M-Pact TV and Zoom.


Due to technical difficulties with Zoom, Ms. Flynn did not call the meeting to order until 7:35 p.m. to ensure everyone interested had remote access.


Ms. Morgan read the Mission & Vision Statements.

Announcements:

Tomorrow is an early release for students. Staff will be participating in In-Service Training Workshops,

October 3, 2022 is Community Soccer Night sponsored by the Athletic Boosters. The girls’ game will begin at 5:00 p.m. and the boys’ game will be played under the lights starting at 7:00 p.m. Concession stands will be available.

The first Parent Teacher Student Association (PTSA) meeting is scheduled for October 5, 2022 at 6:00 p.m. at Quarry Hill Community School (QHCS).

Monson High School (MHS) Open House is October 13, 2022 from 5:30 p.m.-7:00 p.m.

The PTSA has planned Trunk or Treat for October 22, 2022 at QHCS.


Recognition:

Dr. Clarke thanked Bruce Henriques and the M-Pact staff for the addition of live streaming and closed captioning to School Committee meetings.


Ms. Czarniecki came to the podium to recognize and congratulate MHS student Domenic Romeo who has received a recommendation from the National Merit Scholarship Program through the College Board. Domenic is a National Merit Qualifier. Based on his PSAT scores, he has qualified for the National Merit Scholarship. This is the first time in at least 15 years that a student in Monson has received this recognition.



Minutes:

  • Motion by Ms. Morgan to approve the September 8, 2022 Regular Business Meeting Minutes as presented. (Second by Ms. Peterson)

  • Ms. Morgan stated that the page numbering was inaccurate on the email copy sent though the printed hard copy had the correct page numbering.

  • Roll Call Vote:

Ms. Murphy Yes

Ms. Peterson Yes

Ms. Morgan Yes

Ms. Flynn Yes

Ms. Graves-Harrison Yes

  • Motion carries 5-0


Student Representative Report:

The MHS report for this evening was waived.


Superintendent’s Update:

Dr. Clarke reported that she attended the PTSA Board Meeting last Monday. She was invited to attend and discuss plans for the upcoming year. The Reflections Contest has been started, and the PTSA will be working with Ms. Novak from GVS to facilitate the program. Room representatives are going to be brought back this year. As previously mentioned, the PTSA is sponsoring Trunk or Treat on October 22, 2022 and the first meeting of the year is scheduled for October 5, 2022. Newly elected PTSA President Denise Newland will be added to the next meeting Agenda.

There were 2 parent events, one in the morning and one in the evening, for upcoming Alert Lockdown Inform Counter Evacuate (A.L.I.C.E.) drills that will be taking place in the district. There were 2 parents in attendance at each session. Dr. Clarke announced that a parent letter was sent out today outlining all the training that will be occurring in the next week or so. She added that all new staff were trained last week. Counselors have been reading the book I’m not Scared, I’m Prepared for students in grades PK-3. Grades 7-12 will be trained at the high school tomorrow beginning with a PowerPoint presentation followed by 3 simulated active shooter drills. Grades 4-6 will have the same training next Friday, in addition to an Evacuation Drill for Pre-K and Kindergarten at QHCS and grades 1-3 at GVS.

The district will be hosting A.L.I.C.E. training for anyone from surrounding districts that would like to participate, including law enforcement on December 28 and 29, 2022 at QHCS. Dr. Clarke and the Administrative Team will be participating as well.


Agenda Item 9-Old Business-b.-Cell Phone Policy Proposal Update (Mr. Sullivan) was moved up to this point in the meeting.


Mr. Sullivan talked about the results of the parent and staff survey regarding cell phone use in school. He noted that though the staff was in favor of the proposed YONDR Program, parents and families were mixed but there were mostly negative responses. Mr. Sullivan stated that he feels YONDR is not a viable option at this time. He distributed the new Cell Phones-Monson High School Policy. He is proposing the streamlined handbook language and the contents were then reviewed and discussed in great detail. There was an extensive question and answer period that followed.


  • Motion by Ms. Peterson to accept the revised language, as presented, for the Monson Public Schools Handbook regarding cell phone usage. (Second by Ms. Murphy)

  • No further discussion

  • Roll Call Vote:

Ms. Murphy Yes

Ms. Peterson Yes

Ms. Morgan Yes

Ms. Flynn Yes

Ms. Graves-Harrison Yes

  • Motion carries 5-0


Public Session:

Ms. Flynn opened Public Session at 8:26 p.m.

Jen Silva asked that the motion language for the revised handbook language regarding cell phone usage and outcome of the Committee vote be restated.

Ms. Flynn closed Public Session at 8:28 p.m.


Subcommittee and Liaison Reports:


Schedule a Curriculum Subcommittee Meeting for October 26, 2022 at 6:00 p.m.


A Policy Subcommittee Meeting needs to be scheduled and will be done as an action item later in tonight’s meeting.


Ms. Murphy stated that she attended the recent Town Finance Committee Meeting adding the Town Budget Calendar was presented and reviewed and the Special Town Meeting will be held on November 14, 2022. October 17, 2022 is the next scheduled Town Finance Committee Meeting. Ms. Murphy provided additional upcoming meeting dates and topics slated to be discussed.

New Business:

Dr. Clarke reported that the Athletic Boosters have been working very hard to secure funding for items needed for the teams. She talked about the Lacrosse sign and funding that was secured from the Community Preservation Committee (CPC) and the town. The cost of the sign was $7,700. Town funding/CPC donated $5,025 and Athletic Director Mr. Dreher confirmed that $700 could be paid from the athletic account leaving a balance of $1,975 which the Athletic Boosters have graciously agreed to pay. Dr. Clarke noted that a Committee vote was required to accept the donation.


  • Motion by Ms. Flynn to accept the $1,975 donation from the Monson Athletic Boosters. (Second by Ms. Murphy)

  • No further discussion

  • Roll Call Vote:

Ms. Murphy Yes

Ms. Peterson Yes

Ms. Morgan Yes

Ms. Flynn Yes

Ms. Graves-Harrison Yes

  • Motion carries 5-0


Committee members thanked the Boosters for their generous donation.


Dr. Clarke noted that the softball field needs a scoreboard. The Athletic Boosters have secured a donation for many thousands of dollars, from Trelleborg Coated Systems US Inc., to purchase the scoreboard. Through a PowerPoint she was able to provide a Google map showing the location of the new scoreboard. Current Policy specifications will be adhered to and a Committee vote is required to accept the donation.


  • Motion by Ms. Peterson to accept the generous donation from the Boosters and Trelleborg. (Second by Ms. Morgan)

  • No further discussion

  • Roll Call Vote:

Ms. Murphy Yes

Ms. Peterson Yes

Ms. Morgan Yes

Ms. Flynn Yes

Ms. Graves-Harrison Yes

  • Motion carries 5-0


Committee members expressed their thanks to everyone involved in securing the funding for the scoreboard.


Ms. Murphy noted that the scoreboard at Flynt Park does not work or hasn’t been made operable yet this year. It was determined that the scoreboard is under the purview of Parks and Recreation. She also talked about lights for that field. Ms. Flynn stated that this topic would be reserved for a future Agenda, not discussed at tonight’s meeting.


Ms. Bidus presented a Special Education Update September 2022 PowerPoint. She began with the department theme of Positive Thinking and Positive Change-Building on Health and Wellness with a Positive Outlook. She noted that 10 new staff and service providers were hired and they will participate in SPED 101 for Professional Development on September 22, 2022. The department has added 12 new students and Ms. Bidus thanked Administrative Assistant Nichole Martin for all her hard work in getting the new year off to a great start. Ms. Bidus reviewed related services including Occupational Therapy, Physical Therapy, Board Certified Behavior Analyst, Speech and Counseling. She spoke about Early Intervention Transitions at the ECC. The ECC will hold a Special Olympics Young Athletes Event on October 6, 2022. Preschool and Kindergarten students will participate with support from high school and Vocational Independence Program (VIP) students leading the stations. Ms. Bidus spoke about the new grades 4-6 support structure based on strength-based instruction and support. She also spoke about programs at the high school. Achieve, Contribute, Thrive (ACT) is a life skills program for 7th and 8th grade students targeting life skills and functional academics. The VIP Program has placed students for internships at a local dog groomer, Palmer Library, Monson Public Schools and Adams Market. The high school is partnering with Build Repair Grow (BRG) for weekly workshops in the areas of basic carpentry, sewing, cooking and bike repair. An invitation was made to the Palmer 18-22 Special Education program to join for increased social opportunities and community building. Next steps include the return of the Special Education Advisory Council (PAC) this year, Tiered Focus Monitoring (TFM) process and pre-employment transition services (Pre-Ets). The Special Olympics Unified Games will take place on April 28, 2022 at Granite Valley School.

Old Business:

Dr. Clarke distributed and reviewed a report of School Choice Out Students as previously requested by the Committee.

Action Items:

Schedule a Policy Subcommittee Meeting at the next meeting with Agenda items Cell Phone Policy and Flag Policy.

Regular Business Meetings scheduled for October 12 and 26, 2022. November dates to follow.


  • Motion by Ms. Morgan to adjourn Open Session. (Second by Ms. Peterson)

  • No discussion

  • Motion carries 5-0


Open Session closed at 8:59 p.m.


Documentation for this meeting:

September 21, 2022-Regular Business Meeting Agenda

September 8, 2022-Regular Business Meeting Minutes-DRAFT

Cell Phones- Monson High School


Distributed/Presented at meeting:

Scoreboard PowerPoint Presentation

Special Education Update-September 2022 PowerPoint

Monson Students School Choice Out of District 2022-2023


Approved by Committee:


_________________________________________________

Emily Graves-Harrison, Secretary


SC-September 21, 2022-Reg Bus Mtg Minutes
.pdf
Download PDF • 365KB

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