Friday, March 24, 2006
Carlisle School communication evolves
At the March 15 Carlisle School Committee meeting Superintendent Marie Doyle reported on the school's efforts to improve communication with parents. She said she encourages parents to read the school's online newsletter, the Buzz. The newsletter was recently moved online and paper copies are no longer circulated. She also encourages parents to attend the scheduled superintendent-parent coffees, and the educational forums the school co-sponsors with the Carlisle School Association (CSA).
Since the resignation of Principal Steve Goodwin and Assistant Principal Michael Giurlando in late January, parents are giving greater scrutiny to the roles of the superintendent, the principals, and the School Committee. Ten parents attended the March 15 School Committee meeting, where prior to the resignations the meetings were often sparsely attended. School Committee member Wendell Sykes noted that the increased attendance is new for them.
"Where do parents go for information?" Alex Krapf asked, acknowledging that the bi-monthly School Committee meetings may not be the place to discuss some issues.
Sykes said parents should contact the principals, the superintendent, or attend the CSA forums and workshops, which may be a "better venue" for answers to questions about the curriculum and other issues. Parents often have to wait two or more hours because the audience comment period is at the end of the School Committee meeting.
"The school needs to be clear on who has what role," said parent Brenda Therrien.
Marie Doyle said a new organizational chart will be created after the new principals are hired.
Parent Wendy Solomon asked if the school could get a list of issues from parents. Doyle said the School Council is planning to create a survey of teachers, parents, and students this year. Principal Steve Goodwin, chair of the School Council, said the group recently revamped the School Improvement Plan, a chief part of the council's responsibility. The new principals will be invited to upcoming council meetings.
The School Committee discussed making changes to its web site at www.carlisle.mec.edu to enhance parent communication. The committee plans to post the e-mail addresses of its members, and may list members' phone numbers. Based on parent requests, the committee plans to begin listing its long-term agendas on the web site so parents can make plans to attend future meetings.
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