Superintendent's Report - January 13, 2015

posted Jan 16, 2015, 1:14 PM by Hps Webmaster

Progress towards Goals and Superintendent’s Professional Growth

New Superintendent Induction Program
I attended another New Superintendent Induction Program content day. The focus of this day was on using root cause analysis to uncover underlying sources of problems and on the construction of the report of entry findings. You have a copy of my report in your packet. I will be presenting a brief overview and answer any questions that you may have at our meeting.
Interest Based Bargaining Training

I attended an 8-hour session on Interest Based Bargaining that was conducted through the Massachusetts Education Partnership. School Committee Negotiation Team members Mr. Luoto, Mr. Maston, Mrs. Hay and Mrs. O’Brien also attended. This was an outstanding opportunity to explore new approaches to contract negotiations. Having the School Committee Team, the Hudson Education Association Team, and the Hudson Paraeducator Team learning together was a powerful experience. I would like to thank members of all three teams for taking a chance and carving time out of their busy schedules to spend time in this valuable activity.

Secondary Math Professional Development

I was fortunate to attend the morning portion of a full-day professional learning opportunity for our secondary math teachers. The learning was facilitated by Dr. Andrew Chen.

Dr. Chen is the President and founder of EduTron Corporation. Dr. Chen has been a professor and a principal research scientist at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He frequently consults with education research institutions, including the Institute for Education Science at the U.S. Dept. of Education, and Achieve, Inc. Dr. Chen is on the Common Core State Standards Development Team in Mathematics; he is also on the Advisory Board of the National Council on Teacher Quality. Locally, he is on the Mathematics and Science Advisory Council for the Massachusetts Board of Education.  (edutron.com)

I found the portion of the day that I attended to be engaging and rich in discussion around the teaching and learning of mathematics.  While sharing content and learning progressions with teachers, Dr. Chen practiced subtle pedagogical skills that our teachers were able to bring back to their students while encouraging session participants to reflect on their own mathematical learning process. Dr. Chen has agreed to come and provide a parent presentation on the major shifts in the common core and the standards of mathematical practice. He will be presenting at the Quinn Middle School April 1, 2015 from 6:30-8:30 p.m. I am looking forward to this event.

School Visits

·         High School – December 11th

·         Forest – December 15th

·         Mulready – December 17th

Finance and Operations and Facilities

Plumbing and Heating

I want to acknowledge a series of major maintenance repairs made in the last couple of months that were achieved under the radar.

·         A 750-gallon hot water heater at the high school failed and was replaced with an energy efficient gas-fired condensing boiler and side storage tank.  Domestic hot water supply was never lost during school hours.

·         One of the 10 horsepower circulators on the heating system at the high school failed and started leaking.  It was removed, sent out to be rebuilt, was reinstalled and heat was never lost.

·         At Farley Elementary School, both 15 horsepower circulators on the heating system started leaking within three days of each other.  Our Facilities Department lowered the working pressure of the system to reduce the leak, removed the one that was leaking the worst and sent it out as a rush job to be rebuilt.  We diverted the other leaking pump into a floor drain to keep it going. When we received the first one back, we removed the 2nd pump and installed the rebuilt unit in its place.  We never lost heat in the building.  When the 2nd pump is sent back, we will install it with no loss of heat since the lines are already isolated. Keep in mind that all these circulators are in the 12 to 16 year age range which is in the upper range of their expected life cycle.

·         At Quinn Middle School, we had situations that resulted in a domino effect. It was discovered that the plumbing contractors had inadvertently missed installing isolating valves on the 4” cold and 2” hot domestic water mains in the boiler room.  When they came over the December vacation to install them, they had to shut down the water main to the building.  This caused the 4” backflow preventer on the water main to fail.  We worked with the Water Department and finally got it back on line Friday so school could open on Monday.  Two 40 horsepower motors that were wrong from the factory in two of the rooftop units were also replaced.  We never lost heat in the building.

Elementary Morning Drop Off

Upon returning from vacation, the drop off time at our elementary schools changed from 8:00 to 8:15. This has resulted in greater than usual traffic at all elementary schools with a longer wait to drop off students. While we acknowledge that this has resulted in some inconvenience for families, our student tardy rate has not increased since the enactment of the new drop off time. Using the week of 11/17/-11/21 as a base line and comparing the number of students tardy for this past week (1/5/15-1/9/15), the following represents the actual # of students marked tardy in IPass at each school.

 

Farley

Forest

Mulready

November 17-21

46

15

20

January 5-9

16

13

9

For their convenience, we would encourage families to carpool as much as possible, walk to school with their students that are not eligible for a bus or to use provided transportation if possible.

Quinn Afternoon Pick Up

The traffic during afternoon pick up at Quinn has become a great concern for parents, the residents of Manning Street and Town safety officials. Mr. Webster, School Resource Officer Detective Crogan and I will be attending the Internal Traffic Committee Meeting on January 30th to address these issues. I met with Mr. Webster and Detective Crogan on Friday to discuss some alternate traffic pattern proposals to help ameliorate the problems. I will have an update after our ITC meeting. I would again encourage parents picking up their children to pull in past the door and carpool with neighbors and friends as much as possible until the problem is solved.

Website

If you have not already done so, I encourage you to take a peek at the changing face of our District website. Ellen Schuck has been working diligently with Denise Reid to update the look and feel of our website. This is an exciting outcome of our new Communications Subcommittee.

Parent and Community Groups

Assabet Valley Chamber of Commerce Women’s Business Network

I had the privilege of speaking at the holiday tea held by Assabet Valley Chamber of Commerce Women’s Business Network. The topic of my speech was my journey as a woman in a leadership position. I thoroughly enjoyed meeting this group of women and sharing my experiences with them.

Senator Eldridge

Senator Eldridge paid a visit to Executive Assistant Julia Pisegna and me to discuss the possibility of our hosting his annual conference for the elders in his district. We hosted this event last April and it was quite successful. The Senator’s Office reached out to us after the meeting and asked us to host this event again in April. It is a wonderful opportunity to showcase our high school with the elders in our community. 

Rotary Club

Mrs. O’Brien and I attended a Hudson Rotary Club meeting where I was honored to be the guest speaker. The topic that I spoke on was “Hudson Public Schools: Who are We?” This event offered me the opportunity to highlight some of the wonderful work that we are doing in Hudson to offer a comprehensive, world class education to our students.

School Health and Safety Advisory Committee

I had an opportunity to attend the December meeting of the School Health and Safety Advisory Committee. During this meeting we reviewed the District’s Wellness Policy to check for areas of compliance with State and Federal Mandates. I am happy to report that our current policy and practices are in compliance with regulations. 

Personnel and Celebrations

Outstanding Teaching

A fifth grade math teacher immediately applied new learning that she had gained at the session with Dr. Chen to her personal practice. She provided her students with a complex problem with multiple solutions. She incorporated some of the advanced strategies that Dr. Chen used in his presentation. This type of application of professional learning is wonderful to catch, however this teacher took a risk (just as she was asking her students to do) and invited her Principal and Curriculum Director in to see her professional practice. Both were impressed with her initiative and growth mindset. She was then asked to relate her experience and the experiences of her students during a staff meeting. The willingness to expose one’s practice to scrutiny is a cornerstone of a true culture of professional learning. The teaching and collaboration that this teacher exemplifies is the high level of professional practice that occurs in Hudson.

Enrollment 

All enrollment numbers are up to date as of the writing of this report. They are unofficial numbers. The Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education collects snapshots of enrollment data three times per year October, March, and June. I will provide you with monthly enrollment numbers so that you can be aware of the amount of fluctuation that may or may not be occurring on a monthly basis.


 

Aug. 26th  

Sept. 9th

Sept. 23rd

Oct. 7th

Oct. 21st

Nov. 4th

Nov. 18th

Dec. 9th

Hudson High School

 1,027

 

    1,016

1,001

1,000

999

995

995

993

Quinn Middle School

687

689

687

684

683

683

683

683

Farley Elementary School

 506

511

511

512

511

511

513

511

Forest Avenue Elementary School

 317

318

316

315

317

317

317

319

Mulready Elementary School

 277

278

280

280

279

279

279

280

HHS Preschool

94

93

92

90

91

89

89

91

 District Total

 2,908

2,905

 2,887

 2,881

 2,880

 2,874

 2,876

 2,877

 

 

Dec. 9th

Jan. 13th

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 Hudson High School

993

 992

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Quinn Middle School

 

683

685

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Farley Elementary School

 511

 511

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Forest Avenue Elementary School

319

 321


 


 

 


 

Mulready Elementary School

280

 282

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

HHS Preschool

 91

 93

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 District Total

 2,877

 2,884

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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