Leadership Team/Department Head Meeting Minutes – October 1, 2013
GALILEO ACADEMY OF SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY
Leadership Team/Department Heads Meeting
Marcus called the meeting to order at 11:25am.
I. Summer Workshops
–David reminded everyone that if they want to do summer workshops, please ask for the funds up front, otherwise it goes from the following year’s budget. David said if teachers sign up ahead of time, they can get a check for the workshop ahead of time. Teachers will get an advance.
–Joseph said he thought the technical term was “encumbering the funds.”
–David said the funds have to be used by June 30th.
II. Vending Machines
–David still feels students are accessing the vending machines during passing periods and do students know the rules. He felt many of the students do not know the rules.
–David also asked about the new vending machine on the first floor by the cafeteria. There is no way to monitor this area.
–Marcus said he could not find another place for this machine. He asked if anyone knew of another place.
–Stan said that might be competition with the cafeteria. Marcus said he was not sure there is a policy about the competition with the cafeteria as he sees vending machines in other schools in the cafeteria.
–Joseph said part of the nutrition policy is not to have vending machines in competition with the cafeteria.
III. Hall Walkers
–Mat said one of his teachers expressed concern about the rising amount of hall walkers. Third floor seems busy after lunch.
–Stan said first floor after lunch sees activity.
–Doug said the problem is slowing creeping up.
Department Heads Agenda
I. Department Budgets/Stipends
–Marcus distributed the Budget Allocations.
–Doug talked about the consumables in the departments, like Science needing materials for labs. Doug suggested that each department help defray the costs of these consumables. After these funds are distributed, then we develop a formula to divide the funds between the departments.
–David said every year he spends between $7,000 – $8,000 for lab expenses.
–Stan asked why every pathway has a budget except Biotech, which has none. Also, Environmental Science does not have a budget as well. Marcus will talk to Katie about this.
–Michelle agreed that Science should get some extra funds for their consumables. Mat suggested 1%-2% from each department. Doug felt it should not be a percentage, but an amount off the top before the department distributions are made.
–Doug asked if other departments have needs like Science.
–Michelle asked if we should cover the entire cost of Science consumables, or half.
–Marcus suggested we meet with David and come up with a few alternatives.
–Joseph said we should review the needs of the pathways with no budgets—Biotech, Media Arts, etc.
II. Department Head Job Descriptions & Responsibilities
–Joseph put this on the agenda. He read it over and is in agreement with everything but the adjective “under served.” Marcus asked him to define the term. Joseph said he would prefer “underperforming” students. He cited ELD screening their students.
–Kathleen thought under served replaced “at risk.” Marcus said it replaced both terms.
Under served by who is Joseph’s question.
–Marcus said this came up from “under performing” and “at risk.” “Under served” does put some of the ownership on us. Is it teachers, is it parents, is it society as a whole? He felt this challenges us to think is there anything else we can do.
–Joseph felt that some of these kids are “over served” in a case he mentioned where 4 adults are trying to get 1 student to come to class, to no avail.
–David said we can always do more to help a student, but there should be a balance so that many students do not get the attention. “What can I do to help all my students” “What can I do to help this one student that will benefit all my students?”
–Marcus added that all the efforts may not work. He discussed his time in the district and working with many under served students. Success is not easy, but we cannot stop.
III. CPT Agendas and Sign-ins
–Lisa is making Excel spread sheets to keep track of meeting agendas, sign-ins, etc. She is making a binder for the WASC review. She showed Michelle’s materials.
She showed Mat’s weekly emails—some short, some long.
–Lisa will send everyone the Excel spreadsheet.
IV. Emergency Sub Plans/Syllabi
–Lisa is still collecting these. Please turn them in. Once she has them all collected, we will store them in a convenient place to use for substitutes. There should be 3 days of plans.
–Lisa is also collecting syllabi. Co-teachers should decide what they want to do—blanket department syllabus or one they design.
–Alicia asked about cluster meetings within the department. Lisa would like a sign in and a few lines about the meetings.
–Marcus has been trying to attend department meetings. He found 2 departments last week that were not meeting. One had a valid reason. Departments should meet every week.
V. General Feedback from Data Meetings & Next Steps
–Marcus gave a general over view of the last 2 meetings.
–David said last week’s was more useful than the first one. Both meetings brought up many issues. He felt that on both weeks the data was vague and brought up more questions.
–Michelle agreed and said when they were asked, “What’s your action plan?” This question was hard to answer without having clear data. It is hard to be in a position to have district personnel ask these questions and have to answer them without the real numbers.
–Doug said the interesting thing is that there are variables. What about our new administration? What about budget cuts? The data is raw data and the implication he felt was “It’s what’s going on in the classroom? Why does it always go back to what’s happening in the classroom?”
–Doug also said the data comes from students all across the city.
–Michelle said the reclassification of our ELL students is a major factor.
–Alicia suggested members raise their hands to speak.
–Alicia said she did not feel attacked by the district visitors. She felt it was another piece of information to take in and absorb—utilize it or not utilize it. She did not feel she was being blamed.
–Kathleen found it strange she was asked why the passing levels are low. We want our students to have the skills to succeed. Kathleen looks mostly at the CELDT for measurement.
–Michelle asked if we are continuing to meet in 450? No.
–Stan asked who will present this information to the faculty—administration or department heads. Marcus said the administrators will present this at the faculty meeting next week.
–Stan asked why we weren’t given this information at the beginning of the year. Lisa said she was asked by many in the room not to do this at the beginning of the year. They had other things to concentrate on.
Marcus said he would like to look at the data and then discuss what data we want to focus on.
–Doug liked the first meeting presenters from the district. He felt that with the second group, when they were asked to take action, he felt on the defensive. Marcus said we could look at this to see if there is something we are not doing that we could do.
–Marcus discussed a document the members completed at the last meeting. He handed out blank documents that were distributed last week.
He completed his and shared what he wrote with the group.
–Data Conclusions—Out of 19 African American Juniors who took the EAP English—0 were ready for college. Out of 12 AA Juniors who took Algebra II EAP, 0 were ready for college. Out of 3 AA who took Summative Math, 0 were ready for college.
–Reasons (within our control)—Students are not identified and motivated enough to continue to perform at a high school level after leaving middle school.
–Action (research based or best practice)—Best Practice—Principal identified focal students and meets with them individually; introduce myself to parents and constantly monitor academic progress and identify ways to provide support for four years.
–How Do You Know It Happened—Percentage or college ready AA students.
–How Do You Know It Made a Difference—Students will be accepted and attend four-year college or university.
–Josephine talked about the counselors and what they do to support students and the teachers to help them improve.
–Josephine thanked Alicia for asking for raising hands to speak.
Marcus discussed data that he looked at. He told the group that this can be on many different levels—what can you do to make a difference.
–He asked everyone to look at the data sets and see what we would like to focus on.
–Kathleen mentioned the tutoring requests she emailed everyone. They tutor on Monday, Tuesday, and Friday. None have been returned.
–Doug mentioned some shenanigans in the parking lot. Things come over into the cars. He thinks it is from the bleachers.
–Michelle asked Marcus to mention in his Principal’s Weekly Message to have respect for school and people’s property.
Meeting adjourned at 12:15pm.