Thursday, June 13, 2013

Worcester School Committee policies: posting as we go

The Governance and Employee Issues subcommittee is meeting today to work on our review of the Worcester School Committee policies. You can find the first section that we're reviewing here.

Monfredo: review of all policies of the Worcester Public Schools by Mass Association of School Committees; this is the first of many meetings, as we'll take this in pieces
policy change is an ongoing process
should outline the procedures of the school committee, should be clear, be updated regularly, and easily accessible to staff and the public

Carrara (from MASC): if MASC has a policy that may be more up to date, both with be presented
sources are giving for each section (WPS or some cases, ours is theirs)
Don't use figures and names in policies, as those tend to change on an annual basis
Federal government recommends that a discrimination person be appointed (and named)
regulations are not policies; "not how you're going to do it, as that belongs to the superintendent"
"You're the what, and the superintendent and administration is the how"
Try to keep you legal, try to keep you away from doing what you ought not
Legal references are cited at the bottom
Charters are not put in the policy manual itself, 'though they will need to be cited as a source
(the municipal charter covers, for example, how our meetings are chaired, how chairs are elected, and so forth)
"when you make changes, if you send it to us, we automatically put it up for you"
"policy should be on your agenda almost every meeting"
all updates must be voted, but some are mandated by state law or regulation
will meet every four to six weeks: section G, I, J are very large, as they are instruction, students, and employees

School District Legal Status
statutory law
include reference to MGL and Constitution
need a bit of inclusion of WPS history
People and their School District:
separate regulation/procedure document urged
could we have a procedural manual?
working to separate procedure from policy
maintain same coding as policy, as they correspond
some reference to where you can find the procedures
person to whom non-discrimination complaints are issued
question to link to our procedures from our policies: MASC doesn't have the ability to link to a procedures manual
apparently MASC is limited in what they can link to by the contract they have with their web (outsourced) people
Monfredo: decide on a later date
Luster comments that policy and procedure has been combined in the past; not sure that all areas are covered
Carrera comments that several policies are combined in our policies that MASC would recommend that we separate
Monfredo comments that keeping all of the nondiscrimination policy and procedure together in one thing so it can all be found together
Sexual Harassment:
question around user friendliness of current policy vs MASC policy
what is sexual harassment is spelled out by the current Worcester policy
Motion to adopt MASC's policy
Sexual Harassment Grievance Procedure
should keep these and should keep them in your manual
should we clarify which policy is for whom?
students can use either procedure, 'though students can use either
Mission statement needs to be rewritten
Approval of non-smoking policy
CORI information
question on the fingerprinting change
MASC's attorney is saying wait on policy change on that

And here, alas, I had to leave, as it was school pickup time, and just as we were getting into the operational bit! Oh, well. This will report out to the full committee next Thursday.

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