Northampton Public Schools Superintendent Blog

Posts Tagged ‘VINS

graduation_classic_It was a big week for our seniors.  Prom on Tuesday at the Log Cabin was well attended. Students enjoyed dinner, dancing, and an overall positive evening together. Thursday evening, seniors enjoyed a very warm senior picnic, and Friday offered time for the senior breakfast and video viewing.  On Sunday, due to the weather forecast of rain, we will be indoors at John M. Greene Hall at Smith College for our graduation ceremony at 3:00 pm.

Our team continues to review possibilities for personnel, programs, and services following the override vote and we are still establishing our position on the High School Late Start options.  So much of this is interconnected; we will discuss the intricacies of budget and bussing during our School Committee meeting on June 13th.  I will have our new bus contract following the bid opening on June 6th and this will have an impact on our planning.

We welcome new VINS coordinator, Ann Schlereth, to our team. Ann replaces Lynn Barclay as coordinator and will continue to build our network of volunteers, communicate needs and successes in our schools, and will review and help place new candidates wishing to volunteer in our schools.

You may be aware that we have several cases of pertussis (whooping cough) in our school community.  Our school nursing staff is working closely with our local public health authorities as well as our state epidemiologist to identify and refer potential cases. We have also been giving staff and families in the affected schools regular updates and are encouraging consultation with their primary care provider for any symptoms or for immunization, if warranted.

FOR MORE INFORMATION:  Please visit the NPS Health Services website at http://healthservices.northampton-k12.us/.  You may also call the Director of Health Services, Karen Jarvis-Vance, at 587-1364 for general questions and/or your child’s school nurse with specific questions regarding your child.

Sincerely,

Brian L. Salzer

By: photostock

During our Administrative Leadership Team meeting this week we prepared a draft of the professional development work our faculty will be engaged in on September 25th.  I am pleased to see the quality of the learning, the presenters, and the work we have scheduled for everyone: teachers, clerical, ESP’s, nurses, and administrators.   An agenda will be sent out early next week.  At the next ALT meeting, we will continue our planning for the October 24th PLC time during our “late start” for students.

Jennifer Towler, Tracy Harrity, and I are following up on a wonderful and creative idea Jen proposed last year.  We are working with our VINS network to secure volunteer support to help the schools with PR, general communication, and improvements to our “marketing” materials including website info, kindergarten registration packets, and bus information.  We are hopefully optimistic.

Sharon Carlson and I spent quite a bit of time together this week ironing out issues and working very collaboratively toward the betterment of our system.   We worked with Glenda Stoddard to resolve a few minor payroll issues, yet when it comes to payroll, there really are no minor issues.  Issues were resolved quickly to the satisfaction of the people involved.

On Thursday evening our School Committee reviewed the proposals for the late start options. I’d like to take a brief moment to respond to the questions about a new proposal.  The 8:30 start time mentioned will not work due to the close bus times at the end of the day.  And the two tier system will work, but will require extra buses now that we have maximized our bus capacity.  Though it is a time efficient way to improve our transportation, it would be an additional cost to provide additional buses.  So, next month I will report this in open session and I encourage SC members to steer your attention back to the proposals on the table.  If new proposals are requested, I would certainly like to keep to the process I have established and go back for community and educator review prior to having the SC vote on proposals.  The vetting process has been the key for me the past nine months and I would hate to short cut it at the end.

I had the opportunity to have lunch with new Smith Vocational  Superintendent Jeff Peterson on Friday.  We talked about the new teacher evaluation system, his upcoming NEASC review, and took a tour of the shops.  It was nice to see and talk to our JFK students, who are now freshmen, enjoying their exploratory experience in the various shops.

Sincerely,

Brian L. Salzer, Ed.S.


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