Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Public comment at the Board of Ed

Rep. Brady and Cronin are here, deferring comment to later in meeting
updating as we go; using names only as obvious to me

Amy Howland: Academy of the Pacific Rim charter school, testimony on evaluation in teacher licensure
a Teacher Plus policy fellow: "licensure system should ensure that students have access to highly effective system"
"performance systems of impact of students"
teacher's ability to meet students' needs on day one
hope to tie it to existing teacher effectiveness
urge state to streamline transition for those moving into state from elsewhere
took her three years to transfer her license from Washington

Two speakers on restraint and seclusion regs (on which no action will be taken today)
in support of DESE's thoughtful regs
"particularly support Department's ban on prone restraints"
"we know the students, we know the challenges they represents"
"prone restraints represent an unexceptable degree of danger to these students"
white paper made available to Department on dangers of prone restraint
getting some foreshadowing of what the pro side may say
banned by the departments that deal with some of these children as they get older: "why should children be entitled to less protection than the adults?"
"had no difficulty finding children who continued to be restrained even after they have told the adults that they can't breathe"
"that alone makes us very nervous that training is not enough"
speaker from 766 approved private schools: "strongly oppose the ban"
written comment to oppose ban but also gives further suggestions on changes to regs"
"we respectfully urge you to consider the proposals by" them

Barbara Madeloni, MTA president
"it is especially easy for me to be brief, as Commissioner Chester has agreed with most of our points" in his memo
agrees the language should be interpreted as it reads in plain English
agrees this Board properly established regs
agrees this Board properly changed system
agrees Brockton is not in bottom 10%
...yet thinks Brockton should be be granted waiver
"we find this position disturbing"
"does not obviate the fact that the law did exactly what it was intended to do in this instance"
has no authority to waive the law
Commissioner rejects that charter schools are a punishment of lower performance
"I can assure you that a charter school opened in the midst of a community rejecting that school feels like a punishment"
"leaving districts with fewer resources to meet needs of students with higher needs"
"it is fair to require New Heights to play by the rules as Brockton has done for so many years"
Brockton superintendent: joined by mayor, state delegation, MASC, MASS, teachers' union
"we have argued that a waiver is contrary to current applicable regulation"
"applicants were given ample opportunity to relocate"
New Heights has refused to do so
discussion about if the Board will allow the applicants to circumvent the process
"charter schools should be expected to do the same"
"the harm that comes from not following the law...diverting school from core mission...creating loopholes for self-serving interests"
"district has proven success"
Robert Sullivan, Brockton City Council president
"respectfully ask you to reject this request"
"as a lawyer, I don't think there's a legal basis"
"I think this is going to have a detrimental effect on our kids"
Brockton School Committee: on Commissioner's memo
Agree with Commissioner on many points
applicants should have been aware of impact of regs on application
"as stated the statute is clear"
"cannot engage in after the fact rulemaking"
"there is nothing extraordinary about this results"
"an applicant outside the 10% is attempting to seek a charter...outside the law"
Rep. Brady: "implore this Board not to waive the existing regulations"
result of hard work of public schools
"would jeopardize opportunities"
"we're proud of the achievements of the Brockton Public Schools"
entire body of legislators from Brockton

speaker on vocation education from association
appreciate and concur with Commissioner on two step, should be considered a two year timeline, no reimbursement until second year
eighth grade student lists should be given to vocation schools
agree that non-residential tuition rates being more sensible
invite people for tours

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