Assistant Superintendent’s Announcements
Christopher Tranberg, assistant superintendent, made announcements in Dr. Addley’s absence.
There has been an increase in the number of students riding the late bus this week from 10 to15 to about 23 students.
A Memorandum of Understanding has been signed for a collaborative effort to purchase fuel for school buses.
The district will be hosting six educators from Pakistan from Oct. 15 through Nov. 9. There will be five elementary teachers and one secondary teacher from the Foundation School in Pakistan.
The high school completed its NEAS and C visit last week. The initial feedback from the committee was that the high school is well aligned to the self-study. One of the commendations was there is a supportive Board of Education and consistent messaging of equity being a clear focus of the district.
The appropriation request approved at the last meeting for the high school roof repair has been sent to the Board of Selectmen and will be on its Oct. 15 meeting agenda.
Interviews have begun for the high school security guard. This will most likely be a service provided through CREC.
Teaching and Learning
Christopher Tranberg, provided an overview of our new USDA Farm-to- School Grant and addressed the project goals of community gardens, developing curriculum to support the use of gardens in schools, and exploring strengthening the farm-to-school relationship with local farms. Granby was awarded a federal farm-to-school grant for $40,000 and will receive $30,000 over the next two years and a district match of $10,000. Tranberg traveled to Detroit recently for a farm-to-school grant conference and learned there will be an opportunity to write a larger grant for implementation up to $100,000. He stated that schools do not generally receive these grants so this is a bragging point for the district. With regard to establishing partnerships, this will be a priority for the Wellness Committee who will work with the Business Manager and Food Services. A grant administrator is needed for the grant processing and reporting. The board encouraged collaboration with community organizations.
Elementary School Improvement Plan
Kimberly Dessert, principal of Kelly Lane Primary School, presented her 2018-19 School Improvement Plan to the board. The Vision, Mission and District Achievement Goal focuses on the equity report and, specifically, chronic absenteeism and office referrals to decrease by 10 percent in all subgroups. Dessert thanked the board for adding a social worker in this year’s budget for Kelly Lane and stated she has seen a big improvement thus far. She informed the board that her involvement with the Equity Task Force has allowed her to bring back knowledge to her staff with regard to equity. Kelly Lane’s goal for student achievement is to increase achievement in literacy and numeracy across disciplines. There needs to be an increase in progress-monitoring within the standards and within the curriculum to raise students’ scores.
Dessert also discussed student-center coaching that leads to measurable student outcomes by using formal and informal assessments and stated something needs to be done differently to improve student achievement in Grade 3. With regard to instructional goals, teachers at Kelly Lane will increase opportunities for students to take ownership of their learning; will foster independence by having students self-assess what they are doing; develop a shared understanding of being compliant versus being a fully engaged learner; increase the students’ stamina to do the work; make sure the library supports students’ choices as well as their instructional goals; and provide job-embedded professional learning in the classroom to build student independence.
Secondary School Improvement Plan
Susan Henneberry, principal of Granby Memorial Middle School, presented her 2018-19 School Improvement Plan to the board. Her school improvement plan starts with feedback from the faculty as to what is working or not working for the middle school. It is a collaborative effort. The Vision, Mission and District Achievement Goal is to focus on the maximum effectiveness of professional teams to increase student achievement, which has shifted this year to be student intervention teams. Every team is a student intervention team, which includes school counselors, a school psychologist and social worker. There has already been a change in student outcomes. PLC teams are focusing more on looking at student work and, specifically, students who already know the material. SIT teams are student-centered and PLC teams are curriculum-centered. The Student Achievement goal is to increase student achievement in literacy and numeracy standards across all disciplines. Henneberry stated SBAC is the authentic way to measure these standards. Additionally, progress monitoring of all students will be done with a focus on high needs student performance. With regard to the Instructional Goal, middle school teachers will utilize equitable instructional practices that personalize learning for all learners by tapping into students’ talents and creativity with the school-wide enrichment program. A process has been created for identifying gifted and talented students. The new Enrichment Coach hired this year will be working with PLC groups and individual teachers.
Rosemarie Weber, Board Secretary