The Committee also accepted the resignation of Jurrien Timmer who will be moving this June to Manchester- by- the Sea.
Ms. Hollingsworth encouraged anyone who is interested in serving on the School Committee to submit a letter of intent to her, care of the Superintendent’s office along with their qualifications by the deadline set forth in the press release submitted to the Lincoln Journal.
Interviews for the interim members will be held at the June 19th meeting and the Board of Selectmen from the Town of Lincoln and the remaining members of the School Committee will vote to appoint new members. The candidates selected will serve until March of 2004 until the next Town meeting and ballot election takes place.
Sue also announced that the School Committee is also accepting letters of interest for the Lincoln Public Library appointee position, a three year term.
Jan Nyquist gave a report on the first planning meeting for the METCO Forum. Dr Wu facilitated this first meeting. The hopes and objectives of the group are to have a respectful discussion about METCO, to poll and survey the community, then educate the community prior to the community- wide forum. They hope to have the survey go out to the community by the end of June. The committee consists of members of the League of Women Voters, PTA, METCO Coordinating Committee, a representative from the Lincoln Sudbury School Committee, the Superintendent, Mr. Brandmeyer, and Jan Nyquist from the Lincoln School Committee. The Forum will be moderated by an outside facilitator.
Sue Hollingsworth added one last comment. She wanted to thank Mr. McDonough for the great job he does coaching the girls’ Middle School softball team. She stated that Mr. McDonough is a very positive and encouraging person and is a wonderful coach to the girls.
The Superintendent also reported on the following school related activities:
The FY04 Budget Proposal approved by the Lincoln Town Meeting included reduction of sections at both grades 3 and 6 which increased class size in an attempt to come closer to the target established by policy.
Mr. Brandmeyer noted that many parents are concerned with this decision and they have submitted a significant number of letters asking for reconsideration of the decision.
Patty Spencer represented the concerned parent group and spoke to the School Committee via a power point presentation. The focus of the presentation was on maintaining the current small class sizes, to preserve or add direct service to the students as a first priority and to revise and update the class size policy to align with the preference of the parent community.
Jan Nyquist stated that the analysis shows that it costs approximately $90,000 to $125,000 to add a new section to a grade level. Her intention is to create a policy to put in place for the next 9 to 10 years. She also mentioned the 70% of the taxpayers who do not have children in schools and the burden we place on them when the School Committee continues to ask for overrides.
Ashton Peery stated that building a budget involves trade-offs. The current budget had input from administration, faculty and the community.
Mr. Brandmeyer suggested that a sub-committee of the School Committee be formed to take a look at the class size policy. This will allow the Committee to solve problems and find solutions in a flexible and creative way.
The Superintendent stated that the current policy provides the opportunity to add a section if necessary in the summer.
A steering committee composed of faculty, administrators and Advisory Council members will guide a year long study of the K-8 model.
Jan Nyquist stated that she liked the “ground-up” approach and that this was a very ambitious plan and work of tremendous value.
Mr. Brandmeyer liked the focus on the Curriculum work in the plan.
Ashton Peery moved to approve the 2003-2004 Lincoln School Improvement Plan. Jan Nyquist seconded. Approved 4-0. Hanscom Representative concurred.
Sue Hollingsworth complimented Dr. Whitten on the report, stating that it is very well written.
The open meeting adjourned at 10:10 p.m.
Respectfully submitted by