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9/10/2008

Minutes
Meeting Type:
Board of Education Meeting
Location:
Terryville High School Cafeteria
Date:
9/10/2008 7:00:00 PM
PLYMOUTH BOARD OF EDUCATION
REGULAR MEETING
WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 10, 2008
TERRYVILLE HIGH SCHOOL CAFETERIA
MINUTES

Present:

Board: Raymond Engle, Patrick Perugino, Jennifer Zalaski, Karen Kulesa,
Martin Wetzel, Roxanne Perugino and Lenny Morgan,

Excused Absence: Dan Gentile

Administrators: Dr. Distasio, Superintendent of Schools, Michael Santogatta, Business Manager,
Thomas Meehan, Director of Pupil Personnel & Special Education,
Peter Lovely, Director of Curriculum & Instruction and Richard Trudeau, Director of Technology

1. CALL TO ORDER AND PLEDGE TO THE FLAG

Mr. Engle called the meeting to order at 7:03 p.m. The group joined in the Pledge to the Flag.

2. ADOPTON OF THE AGENDA

MOTION: To adopt the agenda as presented. Motion Martin Wetzel, seconded Lenny Morgan, motion
passed unanimously.

3. APPROVAL OF MINUTES

MOTION: To approve the minutes of the Regular Board Meeting of August 20, 2008.
Motion Roxanne Perugino, seconded Martin Wetzel, motion passed unanimously.

4. Presentations

Dr. Distasio introduced the following new certified staff to the Plymouth Board of Education:
James Barbarito – Math, Terryville High School; Robin Boe – Special Education, Eli Terry Jr. Middle School;
Rebecca Daly – Math, Eli Terry Jr. Middle School; Sherry Dawson – Math, Terryville High School;
Sarah Dyer – Speech/Language Pathologist, Plymouth Center School;
Stephanie Fauss – Music, Plymouth Center School; Laura Gagnon – Science, Eli Terry Jr. Middle School;
Hedwig Koenig – Special Education, Terryville High School;

Plymouth Board of Education Page 2 September 10, 2008

Samantha Kubeck – Biology, Terryville High School; Daniel Oleksiw – Computers,
Terryville High School; Kristina Padelli – Special Education, Terryville High School;
Allison Pelosi – Grade 4, Harry S. Fisher Elementary School; Kathy Pisconski – Grade 1,
Harry S. Fisher Elementary School; Kimberly Privitera – Language Arts, Eli Terry Jr. Middle School;
Denise Przystawski – Language Arts/Geography, Eli Terry Jr. Middle School; Tyson Stoddard – Special
Education, Harry S. Fisher Elementary School; and Kathleen Trotochaud – Science, Eli Terry Jr. Middle
School.

The second presentation of the evening was Mr. Lovely’s introduction of Plymouth’s Teacher of the Year,
Mr. Robert Nave, History Teacher at Terryville High School.

Dr. Distasio presented a plaque to Mr. Dennis Klimkewicz, Head of Maintenance for the Plymouth
Public School District in appreciate for all of his hard work in preparing our buildings for the
opening of school.

At this time Mr. Engle called for the following:

MOTION: To recess at 7:08 p.m. in order for the Board Members to meet the new certified staff members.
Motion Patrick Perugino, seconded Martin Wetzel motion passed unanimously.

MOTION: To resume regular session at 7:27 p.m. Motion Roxanne Perugino, seconded Patrick Perugino motion
passed unanimously.

5. PUBLIC COMMENTS REGARDING AGENDA ITEMS

None

6. COMMUNICATIONS

Dr. Distasio informed Board Members that he had received a “thank you” note from
LeaAnn Meyers of the Human Services Department for the Town of Plymouth, for providing a
table to her department. Dr. Distasio indicated this was possible due to the furniture
that was received from Southern Connecticut State University.

7. OLD BUSINESS

None

Plymouth Board of Education Page 3 September 10, 2008

8. NEW BUSINESS

 A. Out-of-State Field Trips

MOTION: To approve the trip to Springfield, Massachusetts for Band, Special Education and
Dance Team students at Terryville High School to participate in the Big E on September 25, 2008.
Motion Patrick Perugino, seconded Roxanne Perugino motion passed unanimously.

MOTION: To approve the trip to Washington, D.C. for grade 8 students at Eli Terry Jr. Middle School
from May 12 – May 15, 2009. Motion Patrick Perugino, seconded Roxanne Perugino motion passed unanimously.

B. Board of Education Strategic Plan

Dr. Distasio explained that the Board of Education Strategic Plan included their vision,
mission statement, core values, beliefs and the goals of the Board of Education.
The Board Goals for this year are as follows:

Goal 1: Systematically improve student performance and accelerate academic achievement for all students.

Goal 2: Welcome and engage students, families, and the community in education.

Goal 3: Develop an on-going building and grounds, maintenance and capital improvement plan to meet the
needs of the schools and community.

Goal 4: Utilize accountability systems for providing, assessing, and supporting quality instruction.

Goal 5: Develop and improve district programs to enhance the student education experience.

Goal 6: Create an opportunity for students in Plymouth to participate in a full day kindergarten experience.

Goal 7: Develop a facility plan to meet the needs of the district Central Office Administration and Staff. 

MOTION: To discuss the above goals. Motion Patrick Perugino, seconded Lenny Morgan motion
passed unanimously.

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With reference to Goal 3, Mr. Perugino suggested that a ten year plan be put into place for all of the
schools with a revision every five years. With respect to Goal 6, Mrs. Perugino suggested phasing in
this program by possibly adding one class at each school and have a lottery. With respect to Goal 7,
we must research where to house Central Office.

After a brief discussion, the following motion was made:

MOTION: To approve the Plymouth Board of Education Strategic Plan from 2008 – 2011.
Motion Patrick Perugino, seconded Lenny Morgan. The chair called for a roll vote: Mr. Perugino,
Mrs. Zalaski, Mrs. Kulesa, Mrs. Perugino, Mr. Morgan and
Mr. Wetzel all voted in favor of the motion. Motion passed unanimously.

C. Appointments

MOTION: To approve the following: Melissa Armbruster – Paraprofessional at Plymouth Center School;
James Barbarito – Math Teacher at Terryville High School; Robin Boe – Part-Time Special Education Teacher
 at Eli Terry Jr. Middle School; Rebecca Daly – Math Teacher at Eli Terry Jr. Middle School;
Lisa King – Paraprofessional at Plymouth Center School; Hedwig Koenig – Special Education Teacher
at Terryville High School and Denise Przystawski – Language Arts/Geography Teacher at Eli Terry
Jr. Middle School.

Motion Martin Wetzel, seconded Patrick Perugino motion passed unanimously.

MOTION: To approve the following coaching appointments: Brent Gurski – JV Boys Soccer Coach at
Terryville High School and George Smith – Girls’ Soccer Coach at Eli Terry Jr. Middle School.
Motion Martin Wetzel, seconded Patrick Perugino motion passed unanimously.

D. Resignations

Dr. Distasio informed the Board that he has accepted the following resignations:
Diana Melende, World Language Teacher at Terryville High School effective September 19, 2008;
Denise Przystawski, Hall Monitor at Eli Terry Jr. Middle School effective August 26, 2008, a
nd Joseph Barbino, History Teacher at Terryville High School effective September 8, 2008.

E. Board of Education Meeting Dates for the Calendar Year 2008 - 2009

The Board Members received in their packets the schedule of the meeting dates for the Board of Education
for the calendar year 2008 - 2009 for their review.

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MOTION: To approve the Board of Education Meeting Dates for the Calendar Year 2008 – 2009
as presented. Motion Roxanne Perugino, seconded Patrick Perugino motion passed unanimously.

F. School Lunch Program

Each year the Board acts regarding the school lunch program. The following motions were made:

MOTION: In accordance with Public Act 06-63, the Plymouth Board of Education authorizes
Dr. Anthony W. Distasio, Superintendent of Schools, to sign theED-099 Agreement for the Child Nutrition
Program, and to sign any claims for reimbursement. Motion Roxanne Perugino, seconded Lenny Morgan motion
passed unanimously.

Public Act 06-63, An Act Concerning Healthy Food and Beverages in Schools, requires that all Connecticut
Public School Districts that are eligible to participate in the healthy food certification take action to
certify whether all food items sold to students will or will not meet Connecticut Nutritional Standards.

MOTION: In pursuant to section 10-34 of the general statutes that participates in the National School
Lunch Program, we certify that all food items made available for sale to students in our school district
will meet the nutritional standards published by the Connecticut State Department of Education.
Motion Martin Wetzel seconded Patrick Perugino motion passed unanimously.

In accordance with Public act 06-63, our Board may allow the sale of items excluded from certification
as long as such sale is in connection with an event occurring after the end of the regular school day
or on the weekend, such sale is at the location of such event and such food is not sold from a vending
machine or school store.

MOTION: The Plymouth Board of Education will permit the sale of items excluded from certification as
long as such sale is in connection with an event occurring after the end of the regular school day
or on the weekend, such sale is at the location of such event and such food is not sold from a vending
machine or school store. Motion Roxanne Perugino seconded Lenny Morgan motion passed unanimously.

G. Drug Free Communities Grant

Dr. Distasio informed the Board Members along with the public the following: The Plymouth Board
of Education along with the Town’s Local Prevention Council received notification from the Federal
Government that we have been awarded the Drug Free Communities Grant. This competitive grant was
applied for last year. It will provide the Town with approximately

Plymouth Board of Education Page 6 September 10, 2008

$100,000 each year for the next five years and will be used for drug and alcohol prevention in the community.
Dr. Distasio thanked the Substance Abuse Action Council and Director at that time, Joe LaRosa; John Daviau,
who helped guide us through the writing of the grant; Lisa Aiudi, Peter Lovely, and Patricia Piskorski for
their work in writing and putting the grant together; to Mayor Festa for his support and participation in
the meetings, to the Local Prevention Council for their input in providing the data necessary for grant
submission.

Mr. Perugino indicated a “special thank you was in order to Dr. Distasio for all of his hard work and
efforts in pushing to get this grant through.

9. BOARD MEMBER/COMMITTEE REPORTS

 A. Curriculum – Mrs. Kulesa, Chair

No Report

 B. Facilities - Mr. Perugino, Chair

All schools opened on time and opening day went well. There are just a few minor items that need to
be taken care of.

 C. Finance – Dan Gentile, Chair

In lieu of Mr. Gentile’s absence, Mr. Engle informed the Board Members of the following:

The Finance Subcommittee met prior to the Board of Education Meeting, reviewed the August accounts
by facilities report and moved that it be forwarded to the Town of Plymouth Board of Finance.

 D. Negotiations – Mr. Perugino, Chair

Mr. Perugino indicated that negotiations with the PEA will begin shortly.

 E. Personnel – Mrs. Perugino, Chair

Mrs. Perugino reported that the Personnel Subcommittee met with the Superintendent prior to the Board
meeting and approved all of his appointments.

Plymouth Board of Education Page 7 September 10, 2008

 F. Policy – Mrs. Zalaski, Chair

No Report
 

G. Safety/Transportation –

No Report

 H. Education Connection – Mrs. Kulesa, Representative

No Report

 I. Student Representatives

Elyse Santorso – Boys soccer team lost to Litchfield and the Boys cross country team won
against Gilbert.

Elyse questioned an issue involving the space around the new fields. It was indicated to her
that the space was to be returned to the Town if it was not used for athletic facilities.
The space was to be used for a nature walk for biology and environment classes. Also, the
cross country team would be able to use this space. Her question: “What’s happening with
that situation, if anything?”

Dr. Distasio’s response: We received the property that was needed to build the school. He
believed the plan of the town, at the time, was to be able to use the other property that we
had for things like nature preserves, nature walks, and possibly a cross country course.
The cross country course was sort of a secondary thought, as the property was more for
educational purposes in terms of viewing nature and using it for biology classes, etc.
There was never any formal plan. The focus was getting the buildings built and getting
the fields on the building. There still is another track that needs to be completed and
some sidewalks that need to be done which are all priorities. The track and sidewalks are
still major concerns.

Elyse – The thought of the track is something that is definitely not in the near future.

Dr. Distasio – That is not accurate. The track is still in the plan and one of the priorities.

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Aubrey McCarthy – the clubs are beginning to set up their schedules. Yearbook meeting,
September 9, 2008 and Leo Club meeting, September 10, 2008.

Alexis Cordone – Questioned the $50 parking fee for students

Dr. Distasio – The fee which is $25.00 per semester will accomplish the following:
(a) safe parking lot; (b) help defray the cost for the tags or stickers which will
coincide with the license plate of the vehicle or vehicles; (c) lining of the parking
lot in the future; and (d) maintaining the parking lot. 

The amount of the fee came about through a survey of the Berkshire League. Fees ranged
from $0 to $100 a year. The Board took the middle of the road figure.

10. ADMINISTRATIVE REPORTS/REQUESTS/INFORMATION

 Mr. Lovely – Director of Curriculum & Instruction/District Administrator in Charge

Mr. Lovely indicated to parents that the CMT (Connecticut Mastery Test) test scores will
be sent home with the students on Friday. Please look for them.

 Mr. Meehan – Director of Pupil Personnel

There has been some movement in the district with respect to paraprofessional positions.

 Mr. Truedau – Director of Technology

Mr. Truedeau thanked, Connor Raymond, Brian Luba and Rich Keater for making it possible to
broadcast tonight’s meeting live. Three successful staff workshops were held during the
month of August. Mr. Trudeau, Mrs. McBaine and Mr. Telke have been going from building to
building to complete any remaining work that needs to be done. Please, if you have any
events you would like broadcast, send them to Plymouth16@plymouth.k12.ct.us.

Plymouth Board of Education Page 9 September 10, 2008

 Mr. Santogatta– Business Manager

Mr. Santogatta reported the auditors have been at the Board Offices and should be finished by
October 1st; the State Report (001) has been filed; the accounts by facilities report was
reviewed by Finance Subcommittee Members prior to the Board Meeting. Some of the accounts
that were discussed were: Facility Maintenance and the Refuse Account. The custodial staff
gave their hearts and souls to make certain the schools were ready for opening day. Our
custodians are a tremendous group of individuals and all should be commended for their hard
work. The town auditors have been in and will complete their work by October l, 2008.

 Dr. Distasio – Superintendent

Dr. Distasio reported that Opening Day for all staff was held on August 27, 2008 in the
Terryville High School auditorium from 8:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m. At the conclusion of the
opening day meeting, staff members reported to their respective schools for meetings and
classroom organization.

We had a well organized and smooth opening due to the work of our administrators,
principals and staff. Dr. Distasio expressed his sincerest appreciation to Dennis Klimkewicz
and the custodial staff for helping to move and clean the buildings in preparation for opening day.
Also, “thank you” to Gary Travers, Brian Falcone, and Phyllis Worhunsky for their flexibility
and hard work. Many Thanks to: Amy Radke, Assistant Principal at Terryville High School for
coming in over the Labor Day weekend to work with other administrators, teachers and staff
as they cleaned and organized the classrooms for students; Angie Suffridge, President of the
Plymouth Education Association, Kathy Bart and Suzette Andrade kindergarten teachers who did
not have the opportunity to prepare their classrooms prior to the Labor Day weekend; Michelle
Spencer, former Board of Education Member, who was cleaning student lockers and to all teachers
and staff who helped over the Labor Day weekend to get our rooms ready for our students.
And to the many parents “thank you” for all of your help. This was surely a team effort.
Also, “thank you” to Jack Schubert, Fire Marshal and Clarence Atkinson, Building Inspector
for all of their help.

Due to the hard work and foresight of Mr. Bill Allread, Chair of the Building Committee and
the Building Committee itself, our buildings are in fantastic shape. Thank you to the town
of Plymouth for your support.

Dr. Distasio announced that he received notification from the Commissioner of Education
congratulating six students from Terryville High School who performed at the Advanced Level
on the 2008 Connecticut Academic Performance Test (CAPT) in Mathematics, Reading, Writing and Science.
Congratulations to: Christopher Anderson, Ronald Bilodeau, Kenneth Case, Alexis Cordone,
Gressi Kello and Douglas Sekorski.

Plymouth Board of Education Page 10 September 10, 2008

Dr. Distasio encouraged parents to discuss the very important issue of bicycle safety with
their children. To our drivers, please drive defensibly and be cognizant of children.

Best Wishes to the best students in the world, the students in our Plymouth School District,
may you have a productive and enjoyable school year.

11. Public Comments Regarding Agenda or Non-Agenda Items

Jacqui Denski, Liason to the Board of Education – 6 Hoye Street, Terryville CT

When considering a full day kindergarten, on behalf of the Town, please be certain
its fits within your (the Board of Education) budget. Also, if considering a “pay to k”
for kindergarten, parents would send there child to a private school rather than pay for kindergarten.

12. Board Liaisons to Schools

Mr. Perugino – Harry S. Fisher Elementary School

 September 8 – 12 Book Fair
September 12 5 p.m. – 7 p.m. Welcome Back Hot Dog Roast
 September 15 PTA Meeting (3rd Tuesday of each month @ 6 p.m.)

Mr. Engle – Plymouth Center School

 No Report

Mr. Gentile – Eli Terry Jr. Middle School

 Excused Absence

Mrs. Zalaski – Terryville High School

 No Report

Mr. Wetzel – SEPTA

 No Report – Meeting was held tonight, September 10, 2008

Dr. Distasio – PTA Council
 
 First Meeting is scheduled for Thursday, September 18th @ 7 p.m.

 
Plymouth Board of Education Page 11 September 10, 2008

13. Final Board Comments

Mr. Perugino – welcome all new teachers. It’s great to have an individual such as
Mr. Nave in our school system.

Mrs. Zalaski – Thank you to the PTA at Harry S. Fisher Elementary School for supplying
the tee shirts for staff and students.

Mrs. Perugino – Welcome back returning and new staff members. Hope everyone has a
great year.

Mr. Morgan – Congratulations to the new staff members. I hope they do well.

Mr. Engle – Congratulations everyone. Welcome new staff members. Congratulations to
Mr. Nave; Welcome new student representatives; Thank you to the Plymouth Center School
PTA regarding the playground equipment that was installed – great job.

14. Next Regular Board of Education Meeting

Mr. Engle stated that the next Regular Board of Education Meeting will be held on
October 8, 2008 at 7 p.m. at Terryville High School.

15. Adjournment

MOTION: To adjourn the meeting at 8:12 p.m. Motion Roxanne Perugino,
seconded Patrick Perugino motion passed unanimously.

Respectfully submitted,

___________________________
Patrick Perugino
Secretary

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