Madison School Board Progress Report - July

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Arlene Silveira
Senior Member
Posts: 47
Joined: Thu Nov 09, 2006 10:16 am

Madison School Board Progress Report - July

Postby Arlene Silveira » Thu Aug 02, 2007 8:48 am

All -

I hope everyone is enjoying their summer. Below is the July progress report for the Board of Education. As you will see, it has been a busy summer. We have started committee meetings and have also been working
in preparation for the search for a new Superintendent.

As always, if you have any questions or comments, please do not hesitate to contact me( or the full Board

Arlene Silveira

Board Priorities
Listed below are the MMSD Board of Education priorities for the 2007-08 school year. In addition to these priorities the Board and committees will also be working on many other issues throughout the year.

1. Hire a new Superintendent to lead the school district by April 2008.

2. Develop specific, measurable goals to evaluate student progress and success.

3. Evaluate the need and weigh options for going to the community for an Operating referendum. If a decision is made to go to referendum, plan strategy and define referendum question(s).

4. Consider revisions to the BOE's equity policy and the development of guidelines to implement the policy to support the BOE goals of reading, math and attendance.

5. Study and address issues that affect the educational environment and student achievement such as attendance, dropouts, truancy, expulsions and bullying.

Board of Ed Development: On July 16 the Board had a facilitated workshop on Board development. As we move into the process of hiring a new Superintendent we thought it was important to discuss our role as Boardmembers in relation to each other, to a Superintendent and to the community. Topics included teamwork, accountability, leadership,
decision-making and vision. Personally, I thought this was a very productive meeting for our Board.

School Naming: The Board made some modifications to Board Policy 6700 on the naming of a school. MMSD schools can now be named for: 1) A
prominent national or local figure who is deceased; 2) a locally significant geographic site; 3) a place of local significance; 4) an idea or concept which represents a broadly respected community value.
At our August 13 meeting we will talk about community involvement in the naming process and finalize the policy. Following finalization of the policy, we will open up the process for the naming of the school on the far West side.

Finance and Operations Committee: The committee members on Finance and Operations are Lucy Mathiak (chair), Carol Carstensen and Maya Cole.
The committee met at the end of June and discussed the following: process for getting feedback on the Citizen's budget; data elements for the quarterly financial reports to the BOE; process and timeline for
review of Fund 80.

Communications Committee: The Board committee members on Communications are Beth Moss (chair), Carol Carstensen and Lawrie Kobza. The committee met twice during July. The committee discussed possible goals for the year: Ways to involve the community in advocacy for state funding reform; crisis communications; student/family communication. The
committee will also be looking at ways other districts communicated with their communities during a referendum campaign.

Performance and Achievement Committee: The committee members on Performance and Achievement are Lawrie Kobza (chair), Johnny Winston Jr. and Maya Cole. The committee met twice during July. There was a review of all the work that has been done on the Four Year Old Kindergarten(4K) project. Based on state funding, this program would cost the district money in years 1 and 2. It would then be self- funding year 3 and beyond. The committee has directed the Administration to evaluate methods that can be used for collecting community input on the value of 4K to the community. In the second meeting, Dr. Ron Meyer from the Value-Added Research Center at UW-Madison gave a presentation on a value-added data analysis system which is designed to measure growth in
student achievement from one grade to the next. Such a system would allow the District to identify the progress made by individual students as well as the extent to which programs, individual schools, etc. have contributed to that progress. This ties in with Board priority #2 listed above. The committee will continue with the evaluation of this program.

Community Partnerships Committee: The Board committee members on Community partnerships are Maya Cole (chair), Johnny Winston Jr. and Lucy Mathiak. The committee discussed the funding of community programs through fund 80. They will recommend to the full Board that future partnerships are funded through an open grant competition. A proposed process and timeline for grants was introduced and, with a decision-making matrix for how to move forward, will be reviewed in more detail at the next meeting. The committee started the discussion of
possible goals for the year including parental participation in the schools and identification of new community partnerships.

August: On the August agendas for the full Board: 1) Code of conduct and expulsion process; 2) Begin conversations on a possible referendum; 3) Kick off the Superintendent search with a planning meeting with Hazard, Young, and Attea, our consultants for the search; 4) Evaluation of Superintendent Rainwater.

westside liberal
Senior Member
Posts: 20
Joined: Fri Sep 15, 2006 11:51 am

Board priorities

Postby westside liberal » Thu Aug 02, 2007 1:37 pm

What I find missing in the board's priorities is a stated desire to listen to the customer.

In any quality mission listening to the customer is key.

An example in priority #5- Teacher performance is not included in items that would "affect the educational environment and student achievement".

Nowhere is there any evidence that the board is collecting data to illustrate teacher performance.
No efforts are made to survey or gather feedback from parents regarding their experience with their child's teacher.

Nowhere does there exist a proceedure or policy for parents to complain about a teachers performance in the classroom.

My child is in a school where one teacher is under performing and the school's principal insist that the dozen or so parents that have complaints are conducting a witch hunt, and that the teacher is the "real victim".

Show me where the schools are listening to the customers?

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