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At the School Committee’s regular meeting on January 4, the following items were presented or discussed:

  • Don Jamison and Paula Cote were unanimously elected as Chair and Vice Chair, respectively.
  • Committee assignments were handed out as follows:
    • Don Jamison – Policy and WSSR-TV
    • Paula Cote – Curriculum, Wellness, Performing Arts, WSSR- TV
    • John Roux – Dropout Prevention, Personnel, Facilities
    • Jonathan Mapes – Adult Education, SRTC, Facilities, Building
    • Amy Sevigny – Curriculum, Wellness, Personnel, SRTC
  • The Audit report was presented by Christian Smith of Wipfli. He said the audit went smoothly, there were no findings or adjustments, and the district is in a good financial position.
  • During Superintendent of Schools Matt Nelson’s construction update, Ms. Sevigny said she had received a lot of questions from parents about how traffic will flow at the Converted Elementary School. Mr. Nelson will check with the architects to see if a preliminary plan can be made available.
  • Superintendent Nelson went over the proposed school calendar for the year. The other schools who send students to SRTC will have input before it can be finalized, but the proposed version has the first student day of the 2021-2022 school year on Monday, August 30. Ms. Sevigny asked if there could be a day before school opens for elementary school students to visit their new schools to reduce first-day anxiety. Beth Letourneau, Sanford High School’s Director of School Counseling, said it would be helpful for transfer students in all grades. She pointed out that over 100 new students transfer to the high school each year.
  • Assistant Superintendent Steve Bussiere announced that the day program for remote learners, held at Lafayette School in a partnership with the YMCA, will continue through the end of the school year. 68 students have taken advantage of the program at some point so far this year, with an average of about 20 students per day.
  • Curriculum Director Beth Lambert gave an update on the “skinny block” enrichment classes planned for Sanford High School next year. See separate story.
  • The process for giving a permanent name to what is now being called the Converted Elementary School (formerly the Junior High) was discussed. See separate story.
  • Sanford Middle School Nurse Shawnda Lapointe presented her request for a sabbatical that would enable her to finish her schooling and become a nurse practitioner. She has a long-term substitute lined up to replace her for the months of September through December, when she would be doing her required clinical rotation. There was lengthy discussion on the possibilities of employing a nurse practitioner in the district, including having a student-based health center where ailments like strep throat and ear infections could be diagnosed and treated. As the funding would need to be budgeted to pay the substitute, Chair Don Jamison said a decision would be made as part of the budget process that will take place over the next few months.
  • The first reading of an update to the policy regarding English Language Learners was accepted. The update would bring the district’s policy in line with state requirements. The second reading of a policy on Earned Paid Leave for Non-Union Employees was approved.

The full meeting may be viewed on the WSSR-TV YouTube channel.

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