The Committee met last night in a brisk Alderman's Chamber, welcoming our newest member Jessica Dugan, and covering a number of diverse topics. (Don't forget - all the documents are on the IQM2 portal on the School Committee section of melroseschools.com.) Here are some highlights:
* A group of about 25 MHS Spanish students will be headed to Valencia, Spain over February vacation for the visit part of their exchange.
* Line-item revenue and grant predictions for next year are out: the bottom line is expected to drop about $87K in FY15 (about 5%) compared with the current year. Supt. Taymore and her staff are following this information closely.
* This fall, about 41% of high school students participated in an MHS sport while about 32% of students participated in a winter sport. Best of all, GPA's for student athletes ranged from 3.01 to 3.69, from which one could infer that engaged and active students make for high-performing academic students. Great job Red Raiders!
* As MVMMS Principal Mr. Brow is planning to retire at the end of this school year, Supt. Taymore is in the process of forming a search committee. Interested in participating? The committee will include two parents (chosen by the Site Council) and one community member chosen by Supt. Taymore.
* The Committee completed its legal duty to assess the Superintendent's mid-year performance and found her to be "On-Target" with respect to her four goals.
* Using samples from other districts, thinking about our December self-assessment, and forming our own ideas based on thoughts around the community, we brainstormed some district goals from which the Superintendent can set goals for herself and staff later this year. Chair Kristin Thorp is compiling our ideas in order for us to have a more focused discussion in the future. (We will invite a representative from the Mass. Assoc. of School Committees in for an hour prior to two upcoming meetings to talk in general terms about framing our work and monitoring its progress. The community is welcomed to attend.)
Most importantly, thank you so much for all you do to help and support Melrose students!
Margaret Raymond Driscoll is a nine-year Melrose School Committee member who is passionate about excellent teaching and learning for all public school students, and considers it a privilege to collaborate with others who share that passion. You can also follow her on Twitter at @MargaretDrisc. Just to be clear - opinions expressed here do not represent those of the Melrose Public Schools, the Melrose School Committee, or the Massachusetts Association of School Business Officials - they are hers alone.