Regular Meeting Meeting | Agenda

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Held in and broadcast from the Dr. Henrietta S. Attles Meeting Room, Cambridge Rindge, and Latin School, 459 Broadway, Cambridge. To sign up to call in using the ZOOM app on your computer or mobile device: visit www.cpsd.us/school_committee/virtual

Regular Meetings will be live-streamed at www.cpsd.us and broadcast on Cambridge Educational Access TV (CEATV) Channel 98/99, as usual. Motions shown below are updated live as they progress.

From the Office of the Executive Secretary to the School Committee

May 7, 2019 | 06:00 pm

1. Public Comment (3 Minutes):

2. Student School Committee Report:

3. Presentation of the Records for Approval:

Special Meeting, March 19, 2019 Budget Workshop
• Special Meeting, March 26, 2019 Budget Workshop
• Regular Meeting, April 2, 2019

4. Reconsiderations:

5. Unfinished Business/Calendar:
#19-80 Motion by Member Bowman

That: Whereas the Cambridge School Committee is committed to honoring the will of the people and creating a working environment where all Committee Members have the ability to honor their civic duty;

Therefore be it resolved, that School Committee Sub-Committee meetings be scheduled during times when Members of a Sub-Committee have the ability to participate and perform their civic duty.

6. Awaiting Reports:
#19-52 Joint Motion by Member Nolan, Member Kimbrough

Whereas the School Committee worked to raise the level of instruction for all students through the Level Up initiative at CRLS; and

Whereas a recent Globe project on valedictorians documented a sobering and critically important question of whether high schools are preparing students for success: and

Whereas the recent report The Opportunity Myth by The New Teachers Project found that despite 71% of students in a national representative sample of audited classes met classroom expectations and succeeded on assignments, only 17% of those assignments were on grade level when evaluated; and

Whereas both the Valedictorian Project and The New Teachers Project identified the need for high expectations and intentional focus on rigorous curriculum, instruction and assignments as key to delivering on the promise of success in college and life; and

Whereas there were gaps by racial subgroups in performance on common assessment; and

Whereas nearly 1 in 3 CRLS students indicated that teachers do not have very high expectations of them; Therefore, the School Committee directs the Administration to evaluate the Level Up ELA classes, to ensure that the initiative is as successful as possible. The School Committee requests the Superintendent submits a report no later than the August 6, 2019 Regular Summer Meeting.

7. Superintendent’s Agenda:

7a. Superintendent's Update:
7b. Presentations:

District Plan Framework Strategic Initiative 2.2:
Rigorous, Joyful, Culturally Response Learning
Dr. Anda Adams, Assistant Superintendent of Curriculum & Instruction
Robin Harris, Principal, Fletcher/Maynard Academy
Kenneth Salim, Superintendent of Schools

7c. CPS District Plan:

7d. Consent Agenda:
#19-80 Recommendation: SY2019/2020 State School Choice Program- Recommendation for Non-Participation
#19-81 Recommendation: Contract Award: BCM Controls Corporation: Security Updates
#19-82 Recommendation: Contract Award: Kittredge Equipment Company Food Service Equipment
#19-83 Recommendation: Heinemann Publishing: Curriculum Materials
#19-84 Recommendation: Recommendation: Gifts/Miscellaneous Receipts
#19-85 Recommendation: Grant Award: FY19 Title III English Language Acquisition: Immigrant Grant (SC19126)
#19-86 Recommendation: Grant Award: HGSE Residency (SC20116)
#19-87 Recommendation: Grant Award: FY19 Cambridge In Motion/ Cambridge Health Alliance (SC19128)
#19-88 Recommendation: Grant Award: FY19 CCT/Microsoft Digital Skills (SC19156)

8. Non-Consent Agenda:

9. School Committee Agenda (Policy Matters/Notifications/Requests for Information):
#19-89 Joint Motion by Member Dexter, Member Fantini

That Whereas Cambridge Public Schools (CPS) strives to provide equitable learning environments across the district; and

Whereas the twelve Cambridge Public Schools elementary school buildings differ in age, quality, and condition of maintenance; and

Whereas the City of Cambridge shares responsibility with CPS for school buildings; and

Whereas the Cambridge Public Schools administration has estimated that CPS buildings will require $132 million in maintenance upgrades over the next five years, which is an average of $26 million per year; Therefore, the School Committee requests that the CPS Administration invite members of the Cambridge City Council to tour CPS buildings that are in the greatest need of maintenance.

#19-90 Joint Motion by Member Dexter, Member Kimbrough

That Whereas there has been discussion in the Cambridge Public Schools community about the advantages and disadvantages of MCAS testing, with some community members viewing MCAS as a tool for equity and others viewing MCAS as a tool of discrimination;

The School Committee will hold a roundtable discussion about MCAS, other forms of CPS assessments, and the Massachusetts Consortium for Innovative Educational Assessments (MCIEA). This roundtable will be televised, livestreamed, and archived on the School Committee website, and will be held before October 15, 2019.

#19-91 Joint Motion by Member Fantini, Mayor McGovern (Subsitute Moton), Vice Chair Kelly

Whereas, as flexible and adaptable learning organizations, Cambridge Public Schools and the Cambridge School Committee uphold the district strategic objectives of Equity and Access and Continuous Improvement; and

Whereas improvement requires the regular monitoring of progress in multiple ways however, the current format and frequency of the Massachusetts Comprehensive Assessment System (MCAS) does not fully align with CPS district objectives or CPS vision of rigorous, joyful, culturally responsive learning; and

Whereas the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) recently acknowledged that a racially insensitive question appeared on the 2019 10th grade English Language Arts MCAS exam that called for students to take on the perspective of a racist character after reading passage in Colson Whitehead's The Underground Railroad; and

Whereas this highlights the need for inquiry into MCAS test question creation, review, and approval process as well as the developmental and cultural appropriateness of the MCAS as an effective and unbiased assessment measure; now therefore be it

Resolved that the School Committee go on record in support of the role that CPSD and the Superintendent can play in advocating to the Massachusetts Commissioner of Education and Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) for flexibility from federal assessment regulations in the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA); and be it further

Resolved that the School Committee request a letter be sent to the Commissioner of Education and Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) encouraging the state to explore an application to the Innovative Assessment Pilot (ESSA Section 1204) for Massachusetts be one of the US States allowed to 'pilot innovative systems of assessments' with a goal of providing continued accountability, and improving authentic and meaningful assessments that more equitably serve our students; and be it further

Resolved that the Superintendent create a working relationship with the Massachusetts Consortium for Innovative Education Assessment (MCIEA) around the idea of creating innovative performance assessments.

#19-92 Motion by Member Fantini

Given the proximity of the Eversource electrical substation to the Kennedy-Longfellow School that the School Committee go on record supporting the attached City Council Order.

#19-93 Motion by Member Bowman

That the School Committee review and approve the attached Draft Personal Use of Social Media by Cambridge Public Schools Employees Guidelines (first reading).

#19-94 Motion by Member KimbroughThat the Cambridge Public Schools will work with the city to ensure equal usage of Russell Field for girls and boys sports beginning in school year 2019-2020.
#19-95 Motion by That the Report of the March 27, 2019 Buildings & Grounds Sub-Committee be accepted as presented.
#19-96 Motion by That the Report of the April 8, 2019 Communication Sub-Committee be accepted as presented.
#19-97 Motion by That the Report of the April 11, 2019 School Climate Sub-Committee be accepted as presented.
#19-98 Motion by Report of the April 23, 2019 Governance Sub-Committee Meeting
10. Resolutions:
#19-99 Joint Motion by Member Fantini, Mayor McGovern, Vice Chair Kelly

That the School Committee hereby goes on record in expressing it's congratulations to Ms. Kathleen S. Donlon for her official retirement as of December, 2017, and that the Executive Secretary be and hereby is requested to forward a suitably engrossed copy of a resolution to Ms. Kathleen S. Donlon on behalf of the entire School Committee.

11. Announcements:

12. Late Orders:

13. Communications and Reports from City Officers:

At the conclusion of the Regular Meeting, the School Committee will entertain a motion to convene in Executive Session, in the School Committee Conference Room, 459 Broadway, Cambridge, for the purpose of discussing strategy for contract negotiations with non-union personnel (Superintendent).

Updated on 04/04/2022