Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Posting from the Board of Ed: introductory remarks, posting as we go

You can find the agenda here.

McKenna: reminder to Board on information on summer learning
Welcoming new members: Ed Doherty and Jim Peyser (new Secretary of Ed)

Chester: "it's been a tough winter...anybody notice that?...to the point that we never ended up holding our January meeting."
Comments that his report is especially long
districts have missed a bunch of time; snow day policy has been in place for a number of years
"not even unprecented in my tenure in Massachusetts"
cites in 2008-09 "ice storm that heavily impacted districts in the Worcester area"
"out of that even that we came up with the schema that we have used ever since"
"will keep our eye on the weather...expectation is that districts will work hard to make up time"
"working to expand time with kids not reduce time with kids"

EdWeek "Quality Counts" report: highest overall, ranked highest in "chance for success"
Chester's response to Bump's auditor of charter schools
"welcome opportunities to improve"

Funding technology: bond of $38M upgrading infrastructure
excited about federal E-rate
first money out of state bond issued; requires a local match
Working with executive office on IT
142 school districts on a call with FCC who oversee Erate and with Senator Markey last week
federal officials assure us that there is sufficient federal funding to receive funds to upgrade funding for infrastructure

teacher equity report required by fed in June (more coming)

MBAE report on PARCC/MCAS in which MBAE said that MCAS wasn't sufficient

echoing McKenna's welcome to new Board meetings

McKenna: EdWeek...in early education we're 27th
1st in K-12

Peyser: "this is deva vu all over again...been awhile since I've been at this table"
"primary goal is to learn and to listen...to get back up to speed"
"for now, it's just great to be back"

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