19th Ward Schools Committee
7:00 p.m., January 4, 2022
Present by Zoom: Joe Baldino, John Boutet, Jane Braband, Douglas and Charlotte Giebel, Lee Loomis, Josie McClary, Christina Molinero, Phyllis Moss, Dan and Jay Ross, Eva Thomas, Jason Wertz, Sarah Yaworsky,
Dr. Phyllis Moss convened the meeting at 7:00 pm and everyone introduced themselves.
School Reports from #29and #10:
Principal Joe Baldino of School #29, in response to the District conversation about merging School 29 with School 19, said he would prefer to stay where they are. Of particular concern is the GEM program students, (“Growth and Education for Students with Multiple Disabilities”) who “receive intensive Occupational Therapy, Physical therapy, Speech Therapy and the benefit of a full time Social Work Service to provide support to student and families.” (Descriptions taken from RCSD website.)
Joe said that modernization to his building would cost about $10 million and require their being out of the building for one year.
Dan Ross has put together four proposals in response to the District’s consolidation plans which he offered to distribute to us all by email. He believes that it is critically important to keep School 29 open with its GEM program, and mentioned that some additional neighborhood kids are interested in attending School 29.
One solution was to use School 19 as a Middle School.
Principal Eva Thomas of School #10 reported that her school had re-opened, though 12 staff members were out on Monday. She considers being in school safer for the children than being in the larger community. Her motto is “Come together as family and make it work.” Illustrating her own point, Dr. Thomas filled in for the gym teacher on Tuesday!
The children have been doing research on their own and making excellent presentations. They also were able to hold a Christmas concert celebrating “Christmas Around the World.”
As of January 13, Dr. Thomas will have fully staffed the school when new recruits expect to be hired and approved by the Board.
Volunteers: At this time, no volunteers are being accepted into the building. All meetings are being held by Zoom until February 1st.
A “virtual tool kit” is prepared for if kids must go online again. Two online learning programs that she recommends are Kahoot and i-Ready. Each classroom teacher has a Zoom link.
Dr. Thomas would like to discuss with Lee Loomis ways to use his volunteers by means of Kahoot and will set up an orientation for his tutors. Each teacher will need to be involved.
To implement Spelling Bee tutoring, she affirmed that a virtual dashboard could be created.
Schools 16 and 19 did not have reports.
Tutoring is expected to begin by Zoom on Saturday, January 15 with the help of U of R fraternity brothers.
John Boutet gave an update on efforts to promote local busing. Our committee favors these efforts, but since our present concern is focused on assisting in recovery of learning lost because of the pandemic, it was agreed that this topic should be pursued with the Southwest Education Committee in the future.
The next Schools Committee meeting was set for Tuesday, February 8 at 7:00 pm via Zoom.
The meeting adjourned at 8:10 p.m.