October 24, 2006
Brookline School Board
September 26, 2006
Dave Partridge, Chair
Richard Pike, Superintendent of Schools
Robert Kelley, Director of Special Education
Patty Montague, Special Education Coordinator
Carol Mace, Director of Curriculum
Mellinee Capasso, Business Administrator
Dr. Anthony Luzzetti, Principal RMMS
Lorraine Wenger, Principal CSDA
Kevin Stone, Assistant Principal
Mary Kay MacFarlane, Recording Secretary
Dave Partridge called the meeting called to order at 6:40 pm, following the Pledge of Allegiance.
A motion was made to accept the minutes of August 16th by Beth Lukovits. Mike Dreyer seconded the motion. The motion carried by a vote 5 yes, 0 no.
Special Education Coordinator Report
The report was given by Patty Montague. She started on July 6th. Responsibilities are shared between RMMS, CSDA, preschool and out of district children. She had a joint staff meeting at the end of August and discussed goals. She is trying to be proactive with the problems that have occurred in the district. She helped hire Para professionals. Team meetings 5-6 at CSDA and 12 at RMMS, as well as, preschool and out of district. A reading tutor was hired over the summer and she has been working with them. She is continuing her education at Rivier, taking a law course soon. She is pleased to be here and everyone has been wonderful.
Business Administrator’s Report
RMMS 01-2600-624-01-00 ($1838)
Actual FY06 - $34046 Budget FY07 - $39000 FY07 - $40838
- CSDA 01-2600-624-02-00 ($6242)
Actual FY06 - $24049 Budget FY07 - $25000 FY07 - $31242
On the Horizon:
Director of Curriculum and Instruction Report
Carol Mace gave the Curriculum and Instruction Report.
Ø Three planning meetings
· July Brookline - exploration of options, raised questions
Outcome - take time to gather information, implement in spring with one pilot grade at each school
· August Brookline and Hollis – information gathering with Milford Assistant Superintendent Laurie Johnson
· September NWEA presentation to SAU 41 Leadership Team
Ø Next steps
· October 6th Milford visitation to observe training
· November 15th NHSAA workshop with NH users of NWEA –
· November Finalize 2006-2007 Pilot Plan
· February/March Teacher training on early dismissal day
· April/May Testing (pilot classes – one grade at each school)
Ø Budget considerations – Preliminary (subject to change)
· Cost $13.50/student (200 students) = $2,700
plus $3,550 (possibly shared with Hollis)
Total $6,250 first year cost
· Source Testing Account
· October Conceptual overview presented
· November Baseline budget presented
Mike Dreyer asked how much time it takes to take the test and does it follow our curriculum? The test takes 45 minutes each and it is aligned with our curriculum.
Dave Partridge asked if we get the data so that if we don’t like the prepackaged report, that we can generate our own report. Carol Mace will look into that.
Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP)
· AYP required by No Child Left Behind (NCLB) and determined by performance on New England Common Assessment Program (NECAP)
· Three factors
ü Participation rates (95%)
ü Performance of school/district as a whole
ü Performance of subgroups (ethnicity, socio-economic status, special needs, English Language Learners)
· Must meet performance targets
ü 2006 Reading target 82% must score proficient or above
ü 2006 Mathematics target 76% must score proficient or above
ü Performance targets increase each year until all students must reach proficiency to establish AYP (2013 – 2014)
Ø Initial reports released in June and revised reports released in August
· Brookline Schools made AYP in all categories
· Brookline School District made AYP when the 2% rule* was applied to the Special Education subgroup in reading
· Full reports are available at www.ed.state.nh.us/education/AYP06-07.htm
Ø *2% adjustment for Special Education
· Applies only to schools or districts that would not make AYP based on the scores of the special ed subgroup
· Developed by the US Department of Education
· Acknowledgement that 2% of students will not be proficient because of learning disabilities or physical or mental handicaps
· Mathematical adjustment allowed until alternative test and academic standards are established for these students
· More information and actual calculations can be found on the NHDOE website (see above)
Lorraine Wenger gave the report for CSDA.
RMMS & CSDA
· Opening Day – Smooth transition of Grade 4
· Open House – well attended; positive feedback
o RMMS K-77 Total-344
o CSDA 4-89 Total-277
The Board took a 15 minute recess.
Gary Deitz is concerned about past and present. He has not been able to get answers to all of his questions. He is very upset about the past handling of his son’s education plan. He urges the Board to be due diligent with parent complaints in the future and he is encouraged by the staff changes.
The Board had lengthy discussions with several members of the audience regarding special education issues.
Dave Partridge encouraged any parent with concerns to follow the chain of command until they get their questions answered.
The Board requested that a memo go out to the parents informing them on how to find out answers regarding Special Education and who do they take their questions to first.
A motion was made by Mike Dreyer to have the Brookline School District Administration provide documentation to parents of students identifying processes and pathways available for troubleshooting and/or understanding educational process issues no later than October 31, 2006. The draft is to be provided to the Board prior to distribution to the public. The motion was seconded by Beth Lukovits. The motion carried by a vote of 5 yes, 0 no.
Policy JLCF – Wellness Policy, First Reading
It is the policy of the Brookline School Board that a comprehensive school-based Wellness Program be established and reviewed annually.
In addition, the Brookline School Board recognizes the importance of appropriate daily physical activity and exercise as a way of minimizing certain childhood health problems.
Toward that end, the District will involve students, parents, staff, administration and community leaders in assessing the school’s nutrition and physical activity environment, and will recommend an appropriate program that will enable all students to take advantage of proper nutrition and daily physical activity.
Mike Dreyer makes a motion to accept policy JLCF as a first reading. Beth Lukovits seconded the motion. The motion carried by a vote of 5 yes, 0 no.
Dave Partridge read the following press release.
Recently, the Press reported on a civil suit brought in the United States District Court against the Brookline School District. It is the policy of the District not to discuss or release the educational records or personally identifiable information of any student, without prior written consent from parents. The District is committed to this policy, and therefore, cannot discuss the specifics of any adversarial proceedings involving students or student issues. It is also the policy of the District not to comment on pending litigation.
The District acts in accordance with its policy to provide all children within the District with a free and appropriate education at public expense. The New Hampshire Department of Education periodically schedules independent on-site reviews for all school districts located within the State, and every district must undergo an on-site review at least once every five years. Past independent onsite reviews have affirmed that the District offers an appropriate education to its students and the DOE scheduled the next review, currently ongoing, at the maximum interval of five years.. The District has no reason to believe that the result of this review will be any different.
The District also takes measures to pro-actively improve the quality of its special education services. In April of 2006 two individuals filed 32 complaints with over 250 allegations regarding the provision of special education in the Brookline School District. The District answered each complaint in painstaking detail and also undertook two voluntary steps to further improve the quality and documentation of its special education services. This constituted the complete resolution of the case and the DOE has now closed the investigation.
The District makes educational decisions with parents as part of the educational team. Disagreements are usually resolved through discussion and consensus. However, when parents and educators disagree over the appropriate special education for a child, and are unable to resolve their differences, the State Department of Education resolves the disagreement through an impartial due process hearing. Those disagreements have been consistently resolved by impartial hearing officers in favor of the District.
The State Department of Education maintains redacted copies of due process decisions. These documents are part of the public record, and some of the decisions are available online, at:
The District is committed to providing all children with a free and appropriate public education and will continue to do so.
A motion to adjourn was made by Tom Solon. The motion was seconded by Beth Lukovits. The motion carried by unanimous vote 5 yes, 0 no.
Date __________________________ Signed ________________________