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MINUTES FOR DEAL LSRT MEETING - 4-11-05

1. Minutes from February meeting will be sent around for approval by email.

2. Principal Search - two candidates have been approved by the Deal principal search panel and have been forwarded to the Superintendent for further review/interviews. along with results of the panel's discussion about each candidate.

3. Deal Facilities money - The original modernization plan has become systematic rehabilitation plus. Altogether $22 million has been approved by the School Board over a 3-year period. The overall school budget still needs approval from the City Council and Congress, but that approval is likely. This money will allow for repair of electrical, heating and plumbing systems, all cosmetic repairs such as painting and rehab of the 'new wing', but also a new, detached gym building with a retractable divider and the reconfiguration of the space where gyms are currently located. Final decisions about priorities, etc. will be made jointly between the Facilities and the appropriate Deal people.

The decision of middle school v. junior high (or something else) should be made by Sept. 2005, which may impact the ultimate design of the renovations. September 2005 is when the Superintendent is scheduled to announce his new Educational Plan for DCPS.

4. Team teaching - update by Ms. Legall. Model is now being introduced by the DCPS into secondary schools, although this originally came out of the middle school model. A draft of a possible change in the daily schedule was discussed, which showed how a switch to team teaching could be accomplished.

5. Local School Plan - Ms. Legall presented the One-Year Local School Transition Plan, developed through feedback of teachers and the LSRT. This new way of doing school plans was divided into successes, challenges and changes needed to address the challenges, including changes in the previous School Plan. The three goals for next year are: Increase Student Achievement in Reading, Increase Student Achievement in Mathematics, and Improve the Delivery of Instruction. Goals are measurable by test scores and GPA's. This is a one-year plan because of the anticipated changes resulting from the new Educational Plan and the adoption of the Massachusetts Standards, which will start in the 2005-6 School year.

6. 2005 -2006 Budget - Ms. Legall presented next year's budget. There will be 54 full-time teachers, with seven teachers in each of the main subject areas (English, Math, Social Studies, and Science), which is the same number as it was prior to the abolishment of positions in year 2003-04. There will be 16 other teachers in art, music, etc. In addition, because of additional funding through Title I, we are able to hire remedial teachers in both reading and math. There will be shifts from one subject area to another for some teachers with double certifications. This will enable some creative focusing of effort; for instance, a current ESL teacher will fill a Science slot, enabling him to further help the ESL students in that subject area. There will be 4 Foreign Language teachers, 2.5 ESL teachers, 5 Special Education teachers, and 1 Vocational Education teacher.

7. The Chair reported that 3 of 4 current parent members will run for re-election, and that there are 4 parents who have expressed interest in running for next year's LSRT. There was a discussion of the importance of having parents from each grade level to ensure continuity from year-to-year.

8. There was discussion of finding a Community Member next year (there was none for this year) and re-instating the Student Member (usually the Student Council President). A thought for a Community Member might be a Deal parent who has moved on to Wilson, to allow for more continuity and increased liaison.

9. Because of all the upcoming changes at Deal (new Principal, new Standards, new Educational Plan), there may be a need to have Subcommittees on the LSRT that are parents/teachers/administrators who work on a particular topic area and report to the LSRT for the final decision-making. This is a model followed at Wilson. Areas might be Standards/Curriculum, School/Community Partnerships, Technology.

10. The chair suggested creating a Technology subcommittee as soon as possible to attempt to work with DCPS and community partners to make sure as many classrooms as possible will be wired for the Internet by next school year. It was seen as ideal for the plan to be developed before the end of the current school year, so that work can be done in the summer. [Background: AT & T partially wired the building, but never completed the project].

11. The chair discussed the germ of an idea to provide additional mental health consultation (private) to support the work of the counselors. This is modeled on a program used at Murch where a psychiatrist worked with the counselor and teachers to help students in need. The funding may come through the PTA, possibly in combination with some limited funds through the Deal budget. An initial discussion was held with the Adele Lebowitz Center of the Washington School of Psychiatry (located in our neighborhood at Wisconsin and Fessenden).

12. Mr. Dacoba reported through Ms. Legall that the new teachers' computer room is ready to go. Once keys have been distributed and teachers have gone through an orientation, the room can be used. There are 4 state-of-the art computers with hi-speed access to the Internet, a B & W laser printer and a color printer. The idea arose in the LSRT and was paid for with discretionary funds from the PTA. It is located in the old Ditto Room.

Prepared by Deborah Fox and Mary Froning April 12, 2005

Mary L. Froning Deal LSRT Parent Co-Chair 202-244-9194 [email protected]

 
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