November 5, 2012
Regular Session

The meeting was called to order by Ray Estes at 7:36 p.m. at Foster School.

Members Present:    Ray Estes, Carol M. Falvey, Dennis Friedman, Paul Gannon, Edward Schreier, Andy Shafter

Central Office Present:    Dot Galo, Ellen Keane, Elizabeth Flynn, John Ferris

Visitors Present:    Roger Boddie, Alec Porter, Debbie Stellar, Mary Power, Laura Marwill, Deborah Sullivan, Jim Watson, Carol Meyer of the Hingham Journal, and Peter MacIntyre of HCAM.

On a motion by Dennis Friedman and seconded by Ed Schreier,

It was
Voted:    To approve the Minutes of the Special Meeting of October 18, 2012.

On a motion by Ed Schreier and seconded by Dennis Friedman,

It was
Voted:    To approve the Minutes of the Regular Session of October 22, 2012, as amended.

On a motion by Andy Shafter and seconded by Dennis Friedman,

It was
Voted:    To approve the Minutes of the Executive Session of October 22, 2012.

On a motion by Ed Schreier and seconded by Dennis Friedman,

It was
Voted:    To approve the Minutes of the Special Meeting of October 25, 2012.

On a motion by Ed Schreier and seconded by Dennis Friedman,

It was
Voted:    To approve the Minutes of the Special Meeting of October 30, 2012, as amended.

Dot Galo noted that the statement provided to the Committee by Special Counsel for the Town of Hingham, Susan Murphy, at the October 9, 2012 meeting would be filed with those Minutes as requested.


The Committee heard a report from Foster School.  Debbie Stellar, Principal, presented a report including the following:  displayed student work, Green Team – Foster identified as Eco – School and awarded Bronze Award, Habits of Mind; Creating, Imagining & Innovating theme, Math Olympiad, Halloween candy collected to send to troops and children.  She narrated a photograph display of her April 2012 trip to sister school, Peking Elementary School in Beijing, China.  Ray thanked Debbie for her report.

New Business

The Committee heard the CAT/Terra Nova Report for the 2011-2012 testing.  Ellen Keane, Assistant Superintendent, reviewed a presentation on the grade 6 2011 CAT results which provides a benchmark against national test results. School Committee asked questions and made comments:  reading results, value of grade 3 CAT results vs. more days for testing.

The Committee began discussion of possible Warrant Articles for the funding of the High School Fields Project.  Dot Galo characterized the discussion as a brainstorming session.  She reviewed the process the School Committee would follow to recommend Warrant Articles to Selectmen and AdCom and options for a possible menu of voter choices at Town Meeting.  School Committee asked questions and made comments:  What is or should be included in the “base recommendation”: multi-purpose field, removal of the bleachers, various fencing, concession building with bathrooms and storage, field hockey drainage, relocation of baseball and softball fields, parking.  Do features include natural v. artificial turf along with life cycle costs and lights? Are there 2-3 options? How does the need for equitable field opportunities for female students factor in? Should the base recommendation include synthetic field? If there was consensus among the committee for an all-in recommendation, is that the most efficient method to present options to TM? If a majority of voters favor an all-in recommendation, does it save time and protect residents’ right to vote by avoiding a protracted debate that lasts well into the night, sending voters home before important TM votes are made? Should we start with a base option, break out the lights option as a second choice, concession/bathroom facilities and added Police Department recommended parking changes as additional features? In what form is the School Committee recommendation made, i.e. if SC votes to recommend something more than a base recommendation? Include cost estimates after value engineering to preliminary estimate; how will costs covered by private funding be articulated in the Article?  Will there be savings from the Tennis and Track projects that can be applied to the proposed Fields Project?  Will CPC funds cover any of the expenses? There was a review of the unanimous Ad Hoc recommendation which included synthetic fields and lights. Finally, it was noted that a different permitting process is in place for this project versus previous proposals.

The Committee received notification of the appointment of Melanie Quackenbush as a paraeducator at Hingham High School, effective October 1, 2012.  This is a 20 hours per week paraeducator position to staff an HEF funded HHS transition program in the Counseling Department.

The Committee received notification of the appointment of Lynda Segal as a paraeducator at South Elementary School, effective August 30, 2012.

The Committee received notification of the appointment of Katherine Trinkle as a paraeducator at Hingham Middle School, effective October 29, 2012.

Scheduled Meetings:
November 15 – Policy Subcommittee and Ad Hoc H.S. Fields Study Committee Meeting.
November 19 – School Committee Meeting at PRS.
November 27 – Policy Subcommittee Meeting.
November 28 – School Committee meeting at Town Hall Central North & South Hearing Rooms (in place of December 3rd School Committee meeting)

There was a reminder that there would be a delayed opening scheduled for November 6 at both HMS and HHS due to the Election.

School Building Committee:  Ray noted that steel erection has begun at Hingham Middle School.

Liaison to Foster School:  Andy Shafter noted letter of commendation to Foster School from the DESE for MCAS results.
Long Range Planning:  Andy Shafter reviewed schedule of the Walk Around on November 17.

Special Education Working Group:  Dennis Friedman reviewed the first meeting and composition of the group.  Next meeting November 29 and timeline to be established.

Superintendent’s Report

1)    November 1 enrollment update – 92 K-5 elementary sections.

2)    Food Service Point of Sale system will start on November 9th.  John Ferris reported that students have been assigned PIN numbers and Parent Online Account will be available.  Dot Galo noted possible impact of new nutrition laws on Food Services sales.

3)    Annual School Report Cards and cover letters distributed to parents including new accountability levels. Hingham HS & Foster schools awarded commended school status for MCAS improvement.

Ray noted “Legally Blonde” performance at HHS on November 15-17 and Dot noted several articles distributed.

On a motion by Paul Gannon and seconded by Dennis Friedman,

It was
Voted:    To adjourn the School Committee meeting at 9:46 p.m.

Carol M. Falvey