Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Update on Southbridge

written update on Southbridge here
Johnston: receiver starts May 2
already collaborating with her on key decisions
separating middle and high school into two schools, as building was designed
need to hire principals for each building: applicants being vetting, receiver will decide
stakeholder group met for final time last night
development of turnaround plan begins once receiver starts
budget: Paul Dakin helping with that
broader work of stakeholder group: weekly updates sent out to staff and parents
community conversations: "place based"
smaller groups: community members, students, parents to be part of discussions around the district
what's working well, what needs to be improved, what suggestions do you have?
have had four so far: worked with parents on location
have had about 70 participants so far: 10 to 30 participants per meeting
Southbridge is a very proud community
"a lot of comments like 'it's about time'" for receivership
very disappointed that it's come to this; get community engaged in a conversation on needs for kids in city
"it's governance"
less clear on folks understanding quality of classroom instruction
"a source of education" we'll have to pay attention
parent involvement: started as almost an accusation; moved to what are the challenges? why aren't people involved?
maybe parents don't have the support themselves to support their students
one social worker in district; need more support
community members feel they're not used as a resource (beyond parents)
opportunity to bring town together "to restore Southbridge"
work to pull in receiver on these conversations

Stewart: leadership in schools to invite partnerships
district take advantage of that resource

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