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District Improvement Team Report
District Improvement Team Report
Judith Paolucci
Thursday, January 24, 2019

The District Improvement Team met on Monday, January 14, 2018 to review progress toward district goals.  Evidence of goal progress was shared. The following accomplishments are considered complete:

  • Elementary science curriculum has been documented and is included in the curriculum folder, available to Smithfield teachers.  

  • Instructional materials for unified arts, computer science, guidance, writing, and library are updated, as needed.

  • Every school has a school safety committee that meets regularly and focuses on matters of safety concerns.

  • The second floor furniture has been replaced at GMS.

  • The bond project passed and the project has commenced.

  • iVisions for financial operations, including budgeting, is being fully implemented.  

  • Two grant workshops were held this year. Multiple grants were written. Grant opportunities are regularly distributed to staff and a Google folder is maintained for resources.

We have made good progress on the following tasks:

  • Writing curriculum for unified arts, computer science, guidance, writing, and library.

  • The assistant superintendent and 2 principals have participated in the WMN Network and have applied the PDSA cycle to work at LaPerche and McCabe.

  • The PD committee meets regularly and works from a well-developed, 3-year plan.

  • Elementary teachers participated in Responsive Classroom training.  Walkthrough data confirmed that teachers were increasingly implementing RC techniques.  After-school PD sessions are continuing and book study groups are organized at each elementary school.

  • In an effort to provide at least one parent workshop per quarter, a bullying workshop, conducted by RIPIN, was held in October.  Jeanine Fitzgerald presented When Kids Don’t Play Nice in October, and Screenagers will be held later in January.  Next, we are scheduling a Chartwells dietitian to speak sometime this spring.

  • Social media, a district app, and a new website is utilized to increase positive news about schools.

  • We have secured a full-time CTE Coordinator through the Innovation grant.  This individual handles program coordination, evaluation, and grant coordination.  A needs assessment for all CTE programs is being maintained to ensure all programs are supported.

  • SHS now has 7 RIDE-approved CTE pathways and has hosted a school showcase in December. Eleven students from out of district attended the showcase. SHS and GMS are coordinating efforts to increase female participation in computer science.  

  • We are implementing the Innovation grant by writing curriculum for GMS computer science, revamping GMS computer labs, purchasing new curricular materials, and implementing new programs.
  • A plan for furniture replacement throughout the district includes a timeline that considers bond project phases and stretches out the expenses over 7 years.
  • The Athletic Capital Committee meets regularly and has drafted the framework for a 10-year plan.
  • Batting shell has been purchased for the baseball field and an RFP for dugouts and backstop fencing is posted.
  • The Library Task Force has met 4 times. The group includes town librarians, school librarians, 3 district administrators and 1 school administrator.
  • We are working on updating pricing for sound, lights, and stage upgrades for the SHS auditorium. Met with music boosters to secure support and input.
  • Twelve finance policies are now included in our policy manual.  One is being introduced at the next SC meeting (1/22) and 7 remain to be written.
  • The Library Task Force, District Emergency Operations Team, and Athletic Capital Committee includes town staff.
  • We have met with some PTOs, Booster Clubs, and the Educational Foundation and plan to meet with other parent groups before the end of the school year.
  • We have promoted the “open house” for the Education Foundation and will be attending their next board meeting.

The following tasks have begun but more effort is needed in order to achieve goals by the end of the year:

  • The HS ranking committee has begun work to redesign the HS ranking system.

  • While some partnerships have been nurtured (i.e. Unos, Fidelity), more partnerships can be established.

  • Naviance was purchased and the use of Naviance will be included in the guidance curriculum.  Small groups of GMS and SHS students are starting with Naviance this month.

  • Some professional development has been offered regarding the effective use of technology.

  • The district’s Acceptable Use Policy is being revised.

  • While the district has a RIDE-Approved 5-year capital plan, there is a need is for an internal plan for $300k-$500k/year capital expenditures.

  • While a plan for a capital revolving account has been drafted, we have failed to gain support for this plan.

  • Monthly meetings between Town Manager and Superintendent lack regularity.

Only one task has not been started:

  • Establish School Committee liaisons to TC and FRC

The team decided that a few tasks were not necessary:

  • Research options for replacing the district’s student information system.

  • Upgrade/enhance the wired/wireless network at SHS / GMS (this year, we should simply assess the need for future upgrades.)

The team will meet in May to assess attainment of district goals and revise goals for next year.