Hollis School Board

Hollis Primary School

January 13, 2005

Doug Cleveland, Chair

Kathy de Lacy

Harry Haytayan

Janet Listowich

Anita Moynihan (left from 7:50-8:05)

Ken DeBenedictis, Superintendent of Schools

Lee Ann Blastos, Business Administrator

Mary Kay MacFarlane, Recording Secretary

 

Doug Cleveland called the meeting to order at 7:05 p.m.

Open Forum

Harry Haytayan asked several questions regarding busing policy. His concerns were regarding last minutes changes made in bus routes, how children and parents are notified about these changes and how quickly administrators are made aware of busing problems.

Dr. Paludi and Dr. DeBenedictis assured him that the school has all the appropriate policies in place to handle any kind of bussing issue that may arise.

Minutes

A correction needs to be made to the January 10th, 2005 minutes. The cost of the boiler is $28,800.

Janet Listowich made a motion to accept the minutes of January 10th, 2005, as amended. Anita Moynihan seconded the motion. The motion carried by unanimous vote 5 yes, 0 no.

Anita Moynihan makes a motion to accept the workshop minutes of December 9th, 2004. Kathy de Lacy seconded the motion. The motion carried by unanimous vote 5 yes, 0 no.

Staffing

A motion was made by Kathy de Lacy to accept with extreme regret, the retirement of Mary Ann Smith. The motion was seconded by Janet Listowich. The motion carried by unanimous vote 5 yes, 0 no.

A motion was made by Anita Moynihan to accept with regret, the retirement of Cheryl Linscott. The motion was seconded by Janet Listowich. The motion carried by unanimous vote 5 yes, 0 no.

A motion was made by Kathy de Lacy to accept the appointment of Elizabeth Keegan as a grade 6 teacher. The motion was seconded by Janet Listowich. The motion carried by unanimous vote 5 yes, 0 no.

Principal’s Report

Dr. Gail Paludi gave the principal’s report of HPS

Enrollment

Enrollment has increased by 2 students

Supervisor Update

We are please to welcome Mrs. Karen Kelley as our new Mathematics/Science Supervisor.

Dr. Paludi meets weekly with the Curriculum Supervisors to review programs and current curriculum initiatives.

Board Goals 2004-2005

Reporting System – the Report Card Committee is continuing to meet on a regular basis. Mrs. Fowler will be reporting on the committee work to date at this meeting.

Fountas/Pinnell Phonics Program – we continue to discuss and refine the implementation of the program in grades K-2. We visited the Guilford Elementary School and the Bow Elementary School to view the program in action.

Language Arts Core Selection Committee – the committee went on two visitations during December. One visit, on December 10, 2004, was to the Guilford School District. They are using a Literacy Collaborative Model. One visit, on December 14, 2004, was to the Bow school District where the Rigby Program and Guided Reading are currently being utilized. We learned a great deal from both visitations and believe that we will take pieces from both visits to assist us with our decision. We will also visit the Hopkinton School District this month where they are using Fountas/Pinnell, Guided Reading, and a Comprehension Strategies Program. Members of the committee will serve as facilitators for the next delayed opening.

Professional Development

Risk Watch workshops continue to be held each month. The topic this month is Fall Prevention. Scott Hunter from the Hollis Fire Department will attend our next faculty meeting to review progress to date.

Our Delayed Opening on 1/19/05 will be devoted to reviewing writing programs as part of the core language arts selection process.

The HQT training for paraeducators continued this month with the first class about Mosaic of Thought taught by Dr. Paludi. The next class will be held in February.

Staffing for ‘04-’05 School Year

We have no changes at this time.

Building Maintenance

The maintenance crew did a fabulous job over the holiday break getting the building cleaned and refreshed for the remainder of the school year.

Johnson Controls worked over the holiday break to correct some minor heating/ventilation problems.

The Hollis Fire Department completed the building fire inspection and we are waiting for the final report. One of the boilers is being replaced as a result of the malfunction and fire over the holiday break.

Grade Level Team Meetings

All teams have been meeting with the curriculum supervisors and Dr. Paludi to discuss various curriculum related topics. Currently at team meetings, grades K-2 teachers are reviewing and discussing the phonics program. Grade 3 teachers are discussing mathematics and how to differentiate instruction to meet the needs of all learners. We will also be reviewing the mid-year writing prompts at all grade levels.

The work of the Report Card Committee was reviewed at team meetings for grades 1-3. We discussed the current reporting system and modifications that each grade level would like to see in the place.

Additional Items of Interest

Registration for incoming kindergarten students and first grade students not currently attending HPS will take place on February 8, 2005 from 4pm-6pm. The snow date for registration is February 10, 2005 from 4pm-6pm. We sent out notices to all the pre-school programs in the area and will have the registration announced in the newspapers. It is critical for us to have everyone register so our enrollment counts are as accurate as possible as we plan for classes in September.

Special Events

The PTA meeting this month will be held on 1/21/05 at 8:45am in the HPS Environmental Science Room. A special thank you to the PTA for all of their support.

We are planning a Mathematics Night for 2/22/05 from 6:30 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.. Additional information will be sent home in a flyer as soon as we have finalized the details.

Carol Thibaudeau gave the principal’s report for HUES

Enrollment

Enrollment is down by 2 students.

Staffing

Betsy Keegan, 6th grade teacher and Meg Bamford, reading specialist have assumed their new roles and are working diligently to learn a new school culture, curriculum, and students. Mrs. Fischer & Ms. Keegan are planning a ‘meet & greet’ for parents on Tues., January 18th. We also welcome a new student teacher in Ms. Noonan’s room.

Several openings will become available for the 05-06 academic year. Therefore, advertising early will be a priority so that the best candidates will be selected along with a strong orientation and mentoring program in place.

Curriculum & Instruction

Gender Equity remains an important topic. During the January staff meeting, staff members were given another article addressing the above and a reminder of how we are implementing our strategies to further support our students. Also, two staff members are researching ideas supporting gender equity to submit for the upcoming Rotary Competitive Grant.

Programs/Activities

The Report Card Committee under the leadership of Candice Fowler has made some great progress and an update will be given by Candice & Brenda Nickerson this evening.

Recycling is still a priority for the Hollis School Community. Mrs. Fowler will present and update.

Tom Williamson, physical education teacher, has quickly embraced the recent snowfall and HUES students are enjoying the cross-country skiing unit.

4th graders contributed to Governor Lynch’s inaugural celebration by submitting student work (‘If I were the Governor, I would…’ & What I like best about New Hampshire is…’) that was displayed throughout the State House during the inauguration.

Our wonderful PTA approved my request for 3 picnic tables & benches for the HUES playground. They will be delivered in the spring.

The Hollis/Brookline Rotary Club has notified us that they will again support our Community Reading Day with their generous donation of $750 and member participation. We look forward to this wonderful event that will be coordinated by Brenda Nickerson, 4th grade teacher.

Our secretaries, Dory Plante & Tina McMullen are official members of the Win School Club & are attending monthly meetings to learn more about the Win School program.

HUES Ski Program is underway. Two sessions have been held with 154 students and 17 chaperones registered. So far, the program has run very smoothly.

We are tentatively planning a Math Night for February 22nd and have considered this event as an opportunity to support the Tsunami Relief Fund. We will need School Board guidance for this since it could involve monetary donations from participants.

Our Senior Luncheon was held today. Miss Hoyt’s class hosted the event with wonderful performances, snowmen centerpieces and special Snowman Soup favors. Approximately 26 enthusiastic guests attended.

Looking Ahead

Jan 14 LA Task Committee full-day work session – HUES

Jan 19 Delayed Opening

Jan 24 Parent Conferences begin

Jan 24 Ski Program #3

Jan 28 Grade 6 field trip – MFA Boston

Jan 31 Ski Program #4

Recycling Committee

Candi Fowler gave a presentation on a recycling program, D.I.R.T. (Do It Recycle Today)

The committee has met each month to explore options for starting recycling. We have:

Contacted the High School

Researched Supplies from the State

Looked into Grant Opportunities

Met Art LeBlanc

Researched environmental/recycling enrichment program for students.

The biggest obstacle to recycling is getting the material to our local dump to be recycled. The DIRT committee has brainstormed and is proposing the following for a recycling program in our schools:

To contact with a "pick up" person for weekly pickup of all recycled material in both buildings. The contact would be for $100/month and the individual would have to have their own vehicle for transporting the material. This cost would come to $1,200.00 annually for recycling.

To purchase 75 recycling bins for our buildings (one in each room). Each bin costs $2.75 for a one-time cost of $206.25.

The total cost for recycling in our district would be $706.25 for the 2004/2005 school year if we started recycling in February.

Projected costs for recycling in 2005/2006 are $1,200.00

Kathy de Lacy makes a motion to go forward with the DIRT program at a cost of 706.25. Janet Listowich seconds the motion. The motion carried by unanimous vote 5 yes, 0 no.

Report Card Committee

Candi Fowler gave an update on the report card committee.

The Report Card committee has been working this year to analyze survey data and make recommendations based upon that data.

The committee feels that the "how" of our reporting system (developmental techniques, using rubrics and differentiating) is on target with research and the trend in education to provide an objective grading system for students. Nashua, Merrimack, Brookline, and Bedford are using the same type of reporting system that is currently being used in Hollis. From the survey data, students in grades 3-6 understood why and how rubrics are used and parents did not report concerns about rubrics.

Also, from the survey data, we concluded that students and parents feel that the PCIS indicators are unclear and hard to conceptualize. Many comments were centered on "I just change the PCIS to ABCD and then I understand how my child is doing".

According to The Center for Performance Assessment, the purpose for report card is twofold. First, they should be accurate. Second, they should be helpful and give insight on how to improve. From our survey data, it is clear that our use of PCIS indicators have not been helpful to parents or students.

The report card committee recommends a change in the indicators so that they are clear and helpful to both parents and students. HUES staff are proposing the use of ABC with some indicator to use when students are not meeting grade level expectations. HPS staff is currently having discussions on what indicators to use. Both schools would need to work on creating/revising all rubrics if the PCIS indicators are changed.

If the school board supports this change, our plan is to begin creating new rubrics to pilot for the 2005/2006 school year.

Anita Moynihan makes a motion to support the report card committee to create a new rubrics to pilot for the 2005/2006 school year and change the indicators at HUES. Janet Listowich seconds the motion. The motion carried by unanimous vote 5 yes, 0 no.

Business Administrator Report

The Board discussed reducing the contingency fund by $20,000 to $30,000 in order to meet the request of the Hollis Budget Committee.

Kathy de Lacy makes a motion to reduce the contingency fund by $20,000. Janet Listowich seconds the motion. The motion carried by unanimous vote 5 yes, 0 no.

Lee Ann Blastos noted that there is no expenditure report for tonight, however, the stipend that the Board receives will be reported to the IRS this year, as the Board is now considered employees of the SAU.

NHSBA Policy

The Board discussed the details of the NHSBA Policy Proposal. The NHSBA is willing to accept $1,000 down as long as the balance is paid by June 2005.

Janet Listowich makes a motion to approve funding for the NHSBA Policy Proposal, contingent that the Coop School District and the Brookline School District approve funding as well. Anita Moynihan seconded the motion. The motion carried by a vote of 4 yes, 1 no.

Policy Development

Doug Cleveland had several revisions to various policies.

Policies BEDB and BGC were both amended.

A motion is made by Kathy de Lacy to accept the following policies as revised: BEDB, BFE, BGA, BGB and BGC. Anita Moynihan seconded the motion. The motion carried by unanimous votes 5 yes, 0 no.

A motion is made by Janet Listowich to go into non-public under RSA 9-A:3II b under negotiations. The motion is seconded by Kathy de Lacy. The motion carried by unanimous vote 5 yes, 0 no.