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LSC MEETING – 20170213

LSC MEETING – 20170213

OA Thorp Scholastic Academy

Monday, February 13th 2017 @ 5:30pm

Attendees: Tim A., Monica D., Debbie D., Ms. Alper, Jerry C., Mr. Robles, Amy E., Efren T.

Jason Q. Tim D. arrived late.

  • Call to Order
  • Roll Call
  • Review/Approval of Minutes
    • Motion to approve the Minutes Motioned: Debbie D, Seconded: Amy E
    • Vote: passed w/unanimous consent
  • Approval of Agenda
    • Motion to approve agenda Motioned: Amy E, Seconded: Ms. Alper
    • Vote: passed w/unanimous consent
  • LSC Committees Updates & Reports:
    • Continuous Improvement Work Plan (CIWP)
      • Covered during the Principal Report
    • Professional Personnel Leadership Committee (PPLC)
      • Meeting on 1/7/2017
      • Distributed meeting minutes
        • Some divergence on the writing curriculum
        • Looking for continuity on curriculum in general
        • Lack of clarity on the extra staff and their roles
      • Separation of Church and State
        • Some discomfort on the choice of songs at the assembly
        • Ms. Ras points out we’re a secular institution.
        • Long discussion on the issue of the content in the assembly and it’s religious content. Opinions varied from the issue of what the content of non-christian songs were to the number of christian songs. Mr. Viktor, who heads the assembly committee, was discussing how one of the assemblies had more secular content. Amy E suggested opening up the committee and allowing more voices.
        • Mr. Toledo will review the song content in the future and Mr. Vihktor intends to open up the committee to more voices.
    • Communications Committee
      • Reviewed the LSC Minute for last meeting
      • Reviewed the initial trial site for the web.
      • Briefly discussed the gas incident
    • Principal Evaluation Committee
      • Will likely have a followup meeting on the revised questions.
    • Friends of Thorp
      • Fundraiser 2/22-23 Cochinita
      • Pub Quiz was 1200
      • Porettas 500
      • ToT 3/25th at Biaggios — 80s theme
    • PTA
      • Book fair will be in March.
    • 8th Grade Committee
  • Principal’s Report
    • Quick review of the foci for the CIWP.
    • Early on gathering of documents:
      • Get and Gap (what are we good at and what aren’t we good at?)
      • Curriculum matrix (What happens each quarter in each grade)
      • Teacher Unit Plans
    • Writing Curriculum
      • Pam Allyn program was brought in a couple of years ago with the idea of providing some structure but not forcing people into specifics. There was some question coming out of PPLC that indicated people weren’t fully aware of the writing curriculum indicating there’s a need to do more monitoring and provide more awareness to staff. Last year we spent about $30k on a teacher helper on joining teachers to the curriculum.
      • Additional questions about why we didn’t have a writing coach which Toledo felt we had and that was problematic for teachers as well who felt they were being told what to do.
      • We’re continuing to develop the curriculum overview document.
      • Since 2012 with the new union contract, the extension of the school year eliminated meeting times between staff and administrations. Since then when Mr. T has provided optional meetings he hasn’t seen much uptake from teachers. When asked about whether that resonated with teachers we heard some agreement that the loss of meetings were problematic but there was a further indication that the curriculum itself is flawed in the opinion from some teachers. There was some suggestion of followup to get some of those voices (especially with respect to the writing and reading curriculum specifically) to the PPLC so that they can be heard.
    • The move towards problem based learning
      • Shift has moved towards small groups across
      • Addition of flexible time
        • creating room for problem based learning
      • Has asked for a capstone project at each grade level
        • 3rd and 4th grade: Sole hope and the lack of adequate shoes in Uganda. Allowing it to be constructed as any type: language arts, math, science, etc.
        • 6th grade: A proposal for Math to do affordable housing “Shark Tank”.
        • This is the beginning
          • Eventually this (over three years) becomes quarterly and interdisciplinary.
      • Why did we choose this? Toledo is choosing this as a leader.
    • Presentation on WIN from Mr. Vikhtor and the 5th graders. Notes:
      • Toledo highlighted the fact that there was less late work being turned in.
      • The move to the colored spreadsheet seems to have made a big impact:
        • More time for kids but also more transparency around where they are and what they need to finish.
    • Safety and Order
      • Gas leak
        • Praised the staff and their response.
        • Engineer notified Toledo that they had a leak and that ComEd had said to evacuate. Toledo said evacuate.
        • Mentioned that there was a bunch of interactions with central office that caused problems in communications and second guessed decisions during the crisis.
        • Talked about teachers maintaining and modeling calm for kids.
        • Recognized Debbie D for her communication and handling of the office as well as the quick action of the engineer.
        • Improvements:
          • Didn’t have class lists at the time
          • Did have emergency contacts because they brought it with them.
          • Did not have an all call to evacuate the building
          • Naomi suggested bringing in someone from the fire department or a first responder on best practices and adjustments.
          • Followup on checking if the SMS worked.
        • Tim A requested followup on the lessons learned and followups. Also asked to followup with Toledo on the interactions with central office and how to approach them on some of their second guessing.
      • Budget Cuts:
        • Ramifications of the $215mm veto by Rauner.
        • $53,666 cut to OA Thorp.
        • Decree was any money not tied to personnel required to give up half.
          • This is why things like supplies etc. are getting hit.
        • Expects a review of the 2 AP positions.
        • Everything except account 290001 was aggregated to determine where the starting part for half would be.
  • Old Business
    • Internal Accounts Review
    • Principal Evaluation Committee
    • Field Trip for students K-8th
  • New Business
    • Updates on field Trip for students K-8th
      • Amy E mentioned a couple of opportunities: Monster, as well as Robin Hood over at the filament. Filament is also looking to have a sensory issue focused performance. Also a Thorp Loves Theatre discount code for Robin hood on March something.
      • Teacher’s have come together to provide 2 per grade that are detailed in one of the reports.
      • Monica was looking specifically for the followup from 3rd grade teachers on how to incorporate field trips since they seemed most resistant.
      • $16 dollars per kid is allocated for field trips.
      • Also provided numbers on the busing.
    • Internal Accounts Review
    • Upcoming Fiscal Cuts from CPS
  • Items up to a vote:
    • Principal Evaluation
      • Motion to approve Motioned: Monica D, Seconded: Debbie D
      • Vote: passed w/unanimous consent, Toledo Abstained.
  • Public Participation
    • Karen Sandman: Fundraising for the 8th grade dance and others is well above the level needed. Sold 874 carnations. Lou Malnati’s, Sky High, all exceeded expectations.
  • Adjourn

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