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LAW School Council Meeting Minutes 9-12-2022

Lawrence School Council 

Meeting Minutes 

Monday, September 12, 2022 

5:00 - 6:00 P.M. 


Thomas Bushy - Principal/Chair 

Tiffany Van Mooy - Teacher Representative 

Abir Zaineh - Teacher Representative 

Heather Riveria - Parent Representative 

Tim Sheehan - Parent Representative 

Amy Apprill Mooney - Parent Representative 

Jennifer Morse - Parent Representative. 

● The Meeting began at 5:00 p.m 

Approve June 6, 2022 Meeting Minutes. The meeting minutes were reviewed and approved by all council members. 

Principal’s Comments: 

● School Council is an opportunity for family members to get an inside take on the school, as you would get from attending the PTO. 

○ Opportunities to share out ideas or get clarification, as well as to advocate for wants/needs. 

○ State law requires schools to have a School Council. Every few years there’s a refresher to complete mandates, such as having members complete the state ethics certification. Meetings are public. 

○ School Council has a role in the improvement plan, focusing on 3 district-wide goals with different action items per school. 1. Cont. Safety and Security (change from covid focus to safety focus). Improvements: Frank Zuccarello to help with locks and keys, fobs, district coordinator hired for all schools. 

○ 2. Cultural Proficiency: Continuum of cultural proficiency and where are we with EDI…progressing appropriately. Lawrence has been making adequate progress. Today the EDI group held a meeting and will hold the meeting again the following Monday. Derrick Zarra as Vice Principal and co-facilitator of the district DEI Group. We have a Current Events and Cultural Affairs group in-house and a staff EDI group, as well as a thriving GSA group.

○ 3. Community Partners: Started with a partnership with Woods Hole and now Falmouth has expanded its professional community. For example, Tiffany’s connection with a Falmouth art center, then there are the Cuttinghunk field trips, projects, and other community endeavors. 

Lawrence School Updates: 

Is the year off to a good start? Last year we had the perfect storm between underestimating the effects of covid, implementing restorative practices, traditional consequences, and then a tricky group of kids. Structures were put in place and structural approaches have been put in place this year (additional guidance counselor in to address real time lower level support systems by helping with the student and/or the teacher). Expectations with kids on the first day of school and explaining interventions took place during assemblies and in classes. 

○ Building community is working on the restoration notion if you've done something wrong = causing harm, own it apologize, and move on. Pair it with traditional consequences. We are in year two of a five-year process with restorative practices. Kids have some de-sensitization (distractions by social media/electronics) and we are also dealing with outside of school scenarios. The staff tried to implement restorative practices a little too quickly. Kids coming up with more use of language from the circles. (Held four circles in grade 7 and two circles in grade 8.) 

○ Structural Changes: Advisory has changed (some kids were with teachers only during advisory which wasn’t accurate when completing the DESSA). Intervention Program = Bulldog Time (2 x 30 mins a week). Last year with everyone having advisories there were fewer adults able to patrol the halls, entrance/exits, and bathroom issues. Schedule the same (rotating) mins change due to bulldog time. Only adults select where students go and the purpose it to have this time to complete work and be sensitive to afterschool commitments.. Clubs won't be offered at this time because of equity/equality opportunities. 

○ Bridge: Some students are hospitalized and the program is in place (coordinator/ta need to be filled). 

Staff: New Counselor, 7 and 8 Grade Math Teachers, new Science Teacher, new ELA Teacher, new 8th Grade Connect Teacher who transferred from the High School. 

Budget: We do not have control over operational budget, but we can advocate for resources (FEF Grant, local businesses have been kind and generous in providing more elite supplies/needs). There is a formula used for the supplies budget.

School Council Member Concerns: 

Parent Representatives would like to have communication, specifically for Open House and Fall Sports/Opportunities, to be presented as early as possible. They felt they did not have time to plan this year. A recommendation was to have 2 Open House sessions and a 3 week notice window of upcoming event dates. Tom explained that some dates are contingent upon the Superintendent’s schedule. 

○ Power School: There is a lag between Power School and Schoology. When in doubt, email the Teacher and/or Counselor. 

○ Reminder, Counselors need to review and preview schedules and classes to check in on SEL, Academic, and IEP needs. 

○ Recommendation for Tom to add hyperlinks (like Laurel does for the Most Important Documents) into the Friday Messages. 

School Council Upcoming Meetings: 

○ October 3, 2022, 5:00pm to 6:00pm 

○ November 7, 2022, 5:00pm to 6:00pm 

○ January 9, 2023, 5:00pm to 6:00pm 

○ February 6, 2023, 5:00pm to 6:00pm 

○ March 13, 2023, 5:00pm to 6:00pm 

○ April 3, 2023, 5:00pm to 6:00pm 

○ May 1, 2023, 5:00pm to 6:00pm 

○ June 5, 2023, 5:00pm to 6:00pm 

● Meeting adjourned at 6:04 p.m. 

Pride, Respect, Responsibility, Compassion