Monday, September 17, 2018

Worcester School Committee meets Thursday, but there's a report they aren't receiving

Worcester School Committee meets Thursday for their regular meeting--the agenda is here--but there is a report they aren't getting.
Teaching, Learning, and Student Supports was scheduled to meet last week on Wednesday, in which case it would report out this week, but the meeting was cancelled. And why is decidedly odd:
Earlier this week, the administration withdrew the plan for further review, and the standing committee’s meeting on Wednesday evening at which it would have reviewed the proposal was canceled.
That's from Scott O'Connell's coverage (and good catch, Scott) of the proposed middle school health curriculum update, which Mr. O'Connell and Mr. Monfredo then describe in what might be politely phrased as florid terms.
The curriculum, however, was never reviewed, because, as we read above "administration withdrew the plan" before the meeting and cancelled the meeting.
It certainly appears as if two members of a three member committee objected to an item on an agenda, let the administration know, and got the administration to withdraw the proposal all without ever holding a public meeting, a clear abbrogation of their responsibility as elected officials.
And if you think two members of a three member subcommittee somehow both called expressing the same concern that got the meeting cancelled, well...

The follow-up article, incidentally, does a much better job of characterizing what is a national model for sex education, something which Worcester is well overdue for updating, as the city's commissioner of public health points out:
Ms. Castiel sad the relatively high rate of teen pregnancies in Worcester is evidence that families cannot be expected to handle sex education in every case, however.
“It isn’t being taught at home,” she said. “I raised two kids myself – it’s a tough issue to talk about with your kids.”
Early adolescence is ultimately a critical period for teaching students about many seemingly adult issues like sex, drugs and relationships, she argues, because it’s when they start to become exposed to them on their own.
“All this stuff starts to happen when they are kids,” she said. “This kind of education has to happen at this age.”
More on this as I have it. Also, contrast with how Martha's Vineyard is tackling this conversation

As for the agenda items that do exist this week, it's a fairly light week. Beyond recognitions and congratulations, the report of the superintendent is on early college high school.
There are the usual beginning of the year retirements, transfers, and resignations.
There are a series of grants to be accepted:
There are also donations: 
-$446.13 from Lifetouch to Chandler Magnet School
-$385.06 from Lifetouch to Belmont Street Community School
-to support the Exhilarate Worcester Initiative at Woodland Academy:
  $800.00 from various donors
  $100.00 from the Specialty Sandwich Co.
  $250.00 from C2 Skin Bar
  $250.00 from Yoga Health Concepts Inc.
  $250.00 from Eagle Cleaning Corporation
  $500.00 from UNUM

Miss Biancheria would like a report on Manufacturing Day (October 5).
Mr. Comparetto is requesting a report on before-school care charges.
There is a single prior fiscal year payment of $71.

There is a posted executive session for "re: IUPE Local 135 and Worcester School Committee, American Arbitration Association No. 01-17-0005-2729 and related administrative agency litigation."

No comments: