Thursday, July 16, 2009

conversation about School Committee conversation

Jack Foley asking where to go with questions from constituents…does she want all calls to go to her office? “Next step folks” she says (CFO, CAO, Dr. Friel), but she also wants to know, if available. Foley expresses concern about inundating her with calls, but she says that is part of their relationship. And she’s going to bring it back to staff. Mullaney says this is a bit of a switch, as she has previously gone to, say, the head of curriculum for a math question. Boone reiterates that she would want to know, as it becomes part of the larger conversation she is having with the School Committee. (OOOH, of all examples, she’s just chosen, in speaking to Mary Mullaney, of having four years of math in high school!) Every example Mullaney comes up with (bus being late), Boone says she wants to know. Mullaney says she has a problem with calling her over everything, fearing it will “bog her down.” Boone says it will only bog her down in the first year, it’s part of the job, she’s “not a control freak”…she is “the newbie to the district, and this is how she learns this.” Bogigian points out that sometimes he doesn’t agree with a person, sometimes he’s just asking a question. She agrees that it’s fine, that you need information. Boone thinks of going forward with joint City Council/School Committee meetings; how does she support your ability to communicate effectively in those sessions?
Quinn wants to go back to press…if someone calls you and wants to know your position…Lukes says it’s done individually. Hargrove says she didn’t have enough information to say something that would go out to the public. Boone is conducting a communications audit: “We’ve got to figure how we communicate…who are the key people?”
(Lunch just arrived from the Broadway)
Foley talks about executive session stuff saying “No comment” but beyond that, responding as individuals. O’Connell talks about educating themselves to educate the public through the media. Would we ever have a spokesman? No. Quinn didn’t know that there was no public relations department. He says they need to be “proactive about getting your message out” (exchanges of looks by reporters here)…”they’ll pick up on the negative” Foley on getting message out, advocating for superintendent being the point person. Monfredo thinks she could have a radio or TV show. Bogigian suggests adding point person to CAO position. She goes back to communication audit. Lukes agrees that she needs to be the person herself so she is known by the community.

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