The Education Committee of the SW Common Council 

Wednesday, January 22, 2016

6-7:30 pm at

Arnett Branch Library, 310 Arnett Boulevard

Minutes Posted on: 

Video of this meeting is uploading and will go live at: 



Janie Anderson         EMMA Neighborhood Assn, 342-2794

Joe Baldino               School #29 Principal, 490-2245, 

John Boutet               SWCC Education Committee Chair, 328-4271,

Mary Coffey               N. Winton Village Co-Chair; Many Neighbors Building Neighborhoods; Public Safety,                                                    

Eleanor Coleman      Rotary SW, CFC YouthBuild, 224-5119,  

Pat Connor                Rochester Public Libraries, 428-8398,  

Mike Dondorfer         UR Americorps VISTA w/ Cornell Co-op 4H, 

John Laing                19WCA Schools Committee & Sch #16 Volunteer, 235-5236,

Chantel Lischer        WFA Community School Site Coordinator, 463-4100,  

Dorothy Parham        EMMA Neighborhood Assn, Founder; 795-0111

Alicia Ward                 Baden Street ATTAIN Lab, 820-7672,  


Reports Emailed:

Lee Loomis        School #10 Volunteer Tutor 

Karen Lahr        School #44 UPK Teacher              




Association for Teenage Diplomats - Scholarship for Student Exchange (15 to 18 YO) - Alicia Ward

  • Local program (Monroe County); private funding and student fees.  Founded in 1951.
  • Deadline for applications was 12/31; still have opportunities for children to apply.
  • Countries include:  Rennes, France; Wurzburg, Germany; Caltanissetta, Italy; Arequipa, Peru; Iquiotos, Peru; Krakow, Poland; Novgorod, Russia; Majorca, Spain.
  • Length of time can be a summer, 6 mths or school year; depends on choice of country.
  • RCSD students eligible, although very few have participated.  Participant numbers have been declining. Learn more at   Applications were distributed.
  • No career goal is necessary.  Some participants may choose a country that fits their career plan if they have one.  Italy and France require that you learn some of the language as their students will be attending school in those countries.
  • Program also hosts students in Rochester; need host families; interest flyer was passed out.
  • Contact Alicia for more information; Alicia is on the ATAD Board and actually participated in the program as a student and was able to go to Mexico.
  • Most students go on to college; one student from Quincy St. is now working for the State Department.
  • Application is very extensive.  Recommended that you begin applying now.
  • Most countries are Rochester’s Sister Cities representing already established and strong relationships.
  • From Rochester/Monroe County, 2-4 students apply each year.


RCSD Budget overrun - update

  • Meeting w/ Terry Dade to talk about Rochester Coalition for Public Education’s proposals including a push to have 2 State Advisors to supervise district (financial & educational); goal is to get board to work better with administration.
  • Cuomo announced he will appoint a monitor/financial advisor for RCSD.
  • Bronson has been a very strong advocate for oversight.
  • Dade very supportive of Early Childhood Literacy.  Common Core tried to introduce a very standardized program for literacy that didn’t really encourage students to read.
  • Still working to improve the busing challenges.  Dade wants to see more neighborhood school environments.  Feels they are making some headway with Albany regarding busing.  Coalition will be meeting with Harry Bronson this Friday, 1/24, to revisit busing.  Parents of Kindergarteners and 1st graders can apply for door-to-door transportation.


Community Engagement Teams (CET) - Updates   We participate in the 4 CET groups in the SW for Schools 10, 16, 19, and WFA.  Videos for 2019-2020 school year , 10-a , 10-b , 10-c , 16-b  , 16-c  , 19-a , 19-b , 19-c , 19-d , 19-e , 19-f  , WFA Have attended all meetings. No videos.  Active Links Above

  • No video shot for meeting 16-a
  • Videos for 10-c and 16-c in process.   


Updates on October 29th Community Forum - Rochester Coalition for Public Education - Report, Video


School #10 - Lee Loomis - Report emailed in

  • The activities of the RES (Rochester Engineering Society) Tutoring Team at #10 School, along with the planned science fair, is currently on-hold. 
  • A significant portion of the Fall 2019 faculty has been displaced by the RCSD lay-offs. It’s been decided to let the “replacement” teachers get to know their students better, before we resume our in-classroom science tutoring activities.
  • Similarly, it’s been recommended that we postpone the 8-10 week process of developing and presenting a science fair, until this coming Spring.
  • I am anticipating further communications with the School’s Community Building Coordinator (also a “new” person), as she works with the teachers to help them reach a point where they’re ready to have our tutors working again, in their classrooms.
  • Meanwhile, I have sixteen dedicated professionals who are anxious to resume helping our students, as soon as circumstances allow.


School 44 - Karen Lahr - Report emailed in

  • We are once again on the list of schools to close.  Apparently there is talk of either merging us with #29 or closing us all together.  Dade is recommending what schools he thinks should close on Thursday.
  • We lost 5 positions out of the 25 professional staff here.  That was a lot for such a small school.
  • Staff continues to try to keep a positive morale despite the rumors once again of us closing. 
  • Additional information can be obtained via the principal, Shalonda Garfield. 


School 16 - Update

  • Project Fair in March - Joan Cowles is the contact person; resource providers are welcome to talk about their programs. 


School 29 - Update

  • 15 teachers for general education - 5 cut; resulted in combining strands, one class at every grade level now vs two; it’s been an adjustment for teachers and students.
  • Focused on recruiting Kindergarteners.  Goal is to have 2 Kindergarten classes next year.
  • Facilities Modernization has been moved to  2020-2021 school year.  
  • School closings imminent; south zone most affected by Charter Schools.
  • Reading teachers who were hired early on in school year were not sustainable cost-wise.
  • District-wide numbers of teachers will be even lower by the end of the school year; feeling very confident in how Superintendent Dade is handling the issues.  Hands are tied; steps need to be taken.
  • District is currently being audited.  Commissioner LeBron warned of budget deficits early on and is now head of Budget Committee.
  • Performance was already low; concern that increasing class size will lower performance; maximum number of students is 25.  Difficulty is that students get attached to their teachers and changing them midstream is detrimental.

Wilson Foundation Academy Update (K-8) - Chantel Lischer

  • Community school vs neighborhood school not the same.
  • CET oversees Receivership transition for each school and makes sure indicators are being met. Community School is only one of those indicators.
  • Trying to get more CET stakeholders; generally, meetings are the 3rd Tuesday of every month at 2:15.  Looking to host at least one evening meeting vs all Tuesday at 2:15 meetings.
  • Needs assessment will be done first to determine which stakeholders are needed.  Can’t press forward with services until needs assessment is complete.
  • Encouraged to look at assets (asset mapping) and potential resources and work from there; must still match the assets with what is needed.  What do you have as resources vs what you don’t have.
  • Needs assessment helps guide you through the process of identifying resources; different schools have different needs.
  • UR’s Smile Mobile assists with dental issues, which can affect attendance and students’ ability to concentrate.  Nurses are overwhelmed.
  • UR also has eyeglasses available to all children.


CFC YouthBuild / Rotary SW - Updates

  • Youth ages 17-24 learn construction skills via classroom and onsite education.  Available to speak to parents who may have eligible siblings. Drop-outs welcome; TASC provided via Community Place of Rochester.  Next class starts in April.
  • Received a 2019 renewal grant to operate for 3 more years.
  • Students are currently working at a Habitat for Humanity site at 48 Cuba Place.
  • CFC YouthBuild is member of Rotary SW, which is working on a showing of the Harriet movie at Cinema Theater (S. Clinton & Goodman) for students.
  • Rotary SW also involved in the organization of National Night Out (NNO), 8/4, 5:30-7 @ the Westside Farmers Market on Genesee St.    The greatest deterrent to crime is to “know your neighbor.” Healthy Food Choices & Ice Cream Social - asking police to serve the ice cream. Next meeting 4/20, 2pm @ NSC Office.


Walk-in  Items

  • Wilson Commencement - getting ready for Black History month; interested presenters should contact Jackie Timothy, Math Teacher.  2/28/20, 7:45am-2:15pm Have different classrooms with different topics.   Looking for individuals in leadership. Theme:  This is Us.  Three Workshops:  1. This is us, 2. How do We Define Us?  3. How They See Us?  Informational meeting 1/27, 6pm
  • Dr. Clinton Strickland, past principal of School #29, has passed away.
  • 4-H Youth Development FREE programming that helps alleviate some of the stressors that arise from loss of teachers :
    • Lesson on conifer trees
    • Offering Agricultural Literacy all of March
  • Library:  
    • Gearing up for Census Day; much can be done online so libraries are being accommodating.  Maybe have Census “parties” - encourage people to come in to do them. Recommending dedicated computers.
    • Working in conjunction with Celebrate City Living & WXXI to offer FREE Preview Screening of NO PASSPORT REQUIRED - The PBS series explores and celebrates the wide-ranging diversity of immigrant traditions and cuisine woven into American food and culture. At Phillis Wheatley library is Feb. 22nd, 11:30am to 1:30pm.


Scribe Services: Eleanor Coleman, CFC YouthBuild & Rotary, 224 -5119,

SWCC Education Committee Chair, John Boutet, 328-4271,

19thWCA Schools Committee Chair, John Laing, 235-5236,

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