HBSPA Meeting Minutes – 3/12/15

Present:  Frank Steever, Rachael Caiati, Karen Ng, Lindsey Reilly  Kristin McBride, Ann Durham, Jennifer Cox, Amy Kessler, Bethany Sutton, Kate Bosch, James Mangrum, Cilla Donatelli, Jessica Hewitt, Sandra Nichols,  Susan Aaron, Sophia Grice, Lori Fernandes, Ilyssa Grant, O’rya Hyde-Keller, Joe Hoefferle, Jeanine Magliocco, Meg Adair, Iris Tong

Principal Updates

Eat Green Wear Green Day: Thanks to organizers Nurse Blessing and HBSPA Health and Wellness Chairs Erin Hogan and Lindsey Reilly. And Third Grade parents Willy Motes and Jennifer Cox, who donated veggies and dips from University Heights Whole Foods. Also, Donovan Dining Services at RIC donated spinach salad with strawberries and honeydew melon. Finally, thanks to the many parent volunteers for classroom reading and table hosting. Parent comments: in the future, consider listing menu items in a handout to parents. Kids’ Favorite dip was the Sweet Basil Vinaigrette by Cindy’s Kitchen.

Locks on Classroom Doors: Ongoing discussions with Megan Key, RIC Assoc. Director of Buildings and Grounds, and Mike Wheeler, head of school resources for Providence Public Schools. Julie Richardson, who is spearheading the HBS Emergency Operations Plan, toured HBS with Mr. Wheeler on 3/11/15. Mr. Wheeler’s recommendations included the observation that classroom doors should lock from the inside or from both sides. An interim solution suggested was that doors can remain locked but propped open. HBS substitute teachers will be provided safety guidelines. Mr. Wheeler commended Mr. Arango’s Red/Green Flagged window indicators.

Lock Down Drills: HBS has completed the 2 required lock down drills, will be doing another unannounced drill with Mr. Wheeler present.

Formal Tuition Announcement: there will be a 5% HBS tuition increase for next year, 2015-16.

RI Governor Raimondo’s budget will be revealed tonight during her State of the State Address, which will disclose her intended state funding support for RIC and HBS.

HBS Scholarship Campaign launch is imminent. Components include an upcoming dedication ceremony for the HBS tree mural, opening of the HBS Store, with proceeds funding student field trips and additional student fees, and a capital campaign supporting 2 different need-based scholarships: one, the Bridge Scholarship, will be available to new students and two, the Retention and Growth Scholarship, will be for HBS students already enrolled.

Principal Magliocco attended The Annual Professional Development Schools Conference, a national educational conference, in Atlanta last weekend. She represented HBS as a professional development school- which supports co-teaching and student teacher interns, and provides a framework for exponential growth.

Recess Policy: a document was created to clarify the policy for teachers and parents. PreK and K have 2 recesses: before lunch and at the end of the day. 1st grade and up all have one 30 min recess. K has indoor/outdoor support with 3 teachers. Parent questions: Can teachers clarify their approach with their class/grade parents? Parent concern voiced when recess is taken away as punishment- policy? research? Consider a more active indoor recess model in the gym, cafeteria, library?

Teacher Updates

Students enjoyed Health and Wellness’s Eat Green Wear Green Day, a great opportunity to try new healthy foods.

Meg Adair and Donna Adler are organizing an HBS team for Relay for Life, Saturday, June 13th at Smithfield High School to honor HBS community members. HBS families are all invited to participate.

President and Board Updates

HBS Tuition issues:

A list of HBS parent questions and concerns generated from the January 2015 HBSPA meeting was submitted by our ad hoc Tuition Committee (Rachael Caiati, O’rya Hyde Keller, Spencer Dickinson, Susan Aaron, Bill Overbay, Paige Reynolds and Jessica Hewitt) to Principal Magliocco and the RIC Administration.

Those concerns include

  • tuition increase in future years
  • added value for added tuition and
  • ongoing parent representation in HBS oversight

A response is expected shortly from the Principal and RIC Deans.

The Principal formally announced today that Dean Pitt approved a 5% tuition increase for 2015-16. Thanks to the efforts of Principal Magliocco and the HBSPA tuition committee, we now have an irrevocable 5% increase, announced in early March. In addition, Principal Magliocco announced a need-based scholarship program to support currently enrolled as well as new HBS students on the basis of need.

HBSPA President Rachael Caiati and Tuition Committee member Paige Reynolds met with Kevin Gallagher, Governor Raimondo’s Director of Communications overseeing education, on 3/9/15. This meeting was to advocate for the Governor’s support for a 1.6M annual, base-funding for HBS as requested by RIC under the College’s budget proposal, and approved by the RI Board of Ed in December 2014. Mr. Gallagher asked insightful questions about the RIC/HBS finances. His position was one of collaboration. He asked “In the face of many state budget cuts, does all of the requested 1.6M for HBS need to be funded by the state, or are there some additional creative ways to maintain the school?” He was provided the financial tables from the HBSPA’s November 2014 communication with the RI Board of Governors for Higher Education, which included the comparison of local independent school tuition increases, and summary of RIC’s lost revenue due to attrition and under enrollment.

The discussion included collaborative solutions to stabilize and build enrollment at a price-point that a diversity of Rhode Islanders can afford.  Mr. Gallagher agreed that HBS has potential that should be more fully realized. We concluded that with a lab school model already in place, exploring innovative curriculum development and teacher training at HBS, strengthening teaching and educational programs statewide and modelling excellence nationwide are all possible with our strong new principal, a stable student population, state support and reasonable tuition increases.

Mr. Gallagher’s questions about HBS have been summarized and forwarded to the RIC Administration.

HBSPA Board and Committee Chairs for 2015-16

Cilla Donatelli, Parent Volunteer Coordinator and Nominations Committee Chair

Will send out Evite to current board and chair people to see if they will continue to hold their positions next year.

Family Dance: 233 tickets sold by today. Dance is next Thursday, 5:30-9:30 pm.

Organizers concerns: parents ordering adult meals for children- OK for this year, but not how Kirkbrae structured the pricing. Also, parents buying tickets for non-HBS siblings is not allowed. Organizers wish to have access to notes from Family Dance parent organizers from prior years. The box.com link will be added to the HBSPA website and Facebook.

Family Activities plan for All School Picnic and/or Fair: discussed fall vs spring event, which would include an easy to organize spring potluck on a weekend day and a more involved outdoor fall festival. Consider coordinating with RIC homecoming? HBS open house? consider next year’s event as community event, in the future as a fundraiser?

Yearbook Deadline: 3/15 for the discounted $26 price.

Sue St. Amand – leaving HBS, last day will be April 3.  Her position will be posted on RIC website.  Christina Messina is working full-time at present.  An appreciation event will be planned for her.   ? tribute from students at next HBS meeting – possible to move April’s HBSPA meeting from 4/9 to 4/2?

Paw Sox game –  planning for Sunday afternoon date (kids able to run bases after game):  likely 5/31.  maybe renting barbecue tent?  Min: 50 people, free parking, all-you-can eat food, ice cream bar =   $29/person.   Total = $1450 for 50 persons.  If HBSPA able to fund 50%, then tix could be $14.50 per person.

Walkathon:  tentative date Friday, May 15.   In past years, this was a fundraising event for the upper grades playground area.  Are we raising money for that playground again?  Or for Health and Wellness events in general? Want to place fundraising purpose on flyer.   To decide at April’s HBSPA meeting

HBSPA account:   Some funds have been earmarked for upper grade playground. Upcoming summit on RIC campus re: playground: a RIC committee will come to evaluate the HBS playgrounds and provide input about improvements.  HBSPA members to discuss at next meeting if we will use funds for playground or another purpose such as scholarships.

One Book One School program – The World According to Humphrey.  Principal Magliocco thanked HBSPA for providing funding to purchase the books for HBS families.

Book Fair = Raised $963.69 at last book fair. Thank you to Joe Hoefferle for a very organized book fair!

Pasta Night = raised $1941.91 for 4th grade field trip.  Thank you to Kristen King, Kristen Libutti, and Rebecca Sparks for organizing the event!

Field Day and Fun Day:  Friday, 5/29 and Friday, 6/5.  Informational Save the Date email will be sent out to parents re: both Field and Fun Day.

Last Day of School:  June 17, 2015