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Meeting Type: Board of Education Meeting
Terryville High School Cafeteria
3/9/2005 7:00:00 PM

Plymouth Board of Education

Regular Meeting

Wednesday, March 9, 2005

Terryville High School Cafeteria



Board: Roxanne Perugino, Patrick Perugino, Daniel Gentile,

Lisa Moriarty, Patricia Budnick, Velma McConnell and Raymond Engle

Excused Absence: Lisbeth Leonhardt and Karen Kulesa

Administrators: Dr. Distasio, Gerry Perusse, Keith Rafaniello, Carol Doiron and

Peter Lovely


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


MOTION: To adopt the agenda as presented. Motion Roxanne Perugino, seconded Velma McConnell , motion passed unanimously.


MOTION: To approve the minutes of February 9, 2005 . Motion Roxanne Perugino, seconded Lisa Moriarty motion passed unanimously.


Dr. Michael Buzzi, principal of Harry S. Fisher Middle School and guidance counselors, from Harry S. Fisher Middle School , Margrit Morley and Silvana Licata and selected students, provided this month's presentation to the Board of Education. Both counselors discussed the role of the middle school guidance counselor. At Harry S. Fisher Middle School , the main objective of the guidance department is to be an advocate for students and to help make middle school a positive experience for students. Ms. Morley and Ms. Licata outlined the manner in which they work with students in order to provide educational, personal and social guidance.

Plymouth Board of Education Page 2 February 9, 2005




Mr. Perugino was invited to the following events which he will be unable to attend and opened up these invitations to any Board Member who would like to attend in his place: (1) A program presented by the Volunteer Ambulance Corp, entitled "The Hard Truth" Friday, March 11, 2005 at 8:45 a.m. at Terryville High School. This is a ninety minute program and will cover such topics as Mother's Against Drunk Drivers and Drinking and Driving; and (2) the 10 th Annual Academic Bowl Challenge to be held at Bristol Eastern High School on Saturday, March 12, 2005 at 12 p.m.




A. Approval of Childbearing/Child Rearing Leaves

MOTION: To approve a childbearing leave beginning on or about March 28, 2005 and extending through the end of the 2004 - 2005 school year for Mrs. Jaime Omiecinski, Grade 3 teacher at Plymouth Center School. Motion Velma McConnell , seconded Ray Engle motion passed unanimously.

MOTION: To approve an extension of a childrearing leave for Mrs. Michelle Luba , social worker for the remainder of the 2004 - 2005 school year. Mrs. Luba's initial request for leave was from September 7, 2004 - March 2, 2005 . Motion Roxanne Perugino seconded Ray Engle motion passed unanimously.

B. Board of Education Budget

MOTION: To approve a recommended increase of 8.5% over the current Board of Education Budget to the Plymouth Board of Finance for the fiscal year 2005 - 2006.

Motion Patricia Budnick, seconded Roxanne Perugino motion passed unanimously

Plymouth Board of Education Page 3 March 9, 2005

C. Approval of Renovation Plan for Harry S. Fisher Middle School and Terryville High School .

Following a brief presentation by the Mr. James Hoagland of the architectural firm of Jeter, Cook & Jepson with respect to Phase I renovation plans for Harry S. Fisher Middle & Terryville High Schools, the following motion was made:

MOTION: To approve Phase 1 of the plans of both conversation projects as presented for the renovation of Harry S. Fisher Middle School to an elementary school and for the renovation of Terryville High School to a middle school. Motion Ray Engle, seconded Roxanne Perugino. All In Favor: (a roll call vote was taken) Mrs. Perugino, Mrs. McConnell, Mr. Engle, Mr. Gentile, Mrs. Moriarty, Mrs. Budnick and Mr. Perugino. Motion passed unanimously.


• Curriculum - Karen Kulesa, Chair (excused absence)

Due to Mrs. Kulesa's absence, Mr. Lovely reported on the items that were discussed at the Curriculum Subcommittee Meeting.

The Curriculum Subcommittee met on March 2, 2005 and discussed the following items: (1) (a) District Improvement Plan - develops the Board of Education Goals, details objectives and corresponding action plans; (b) Teacher Evaluation Plan and Administrator Evaluation Plans - these two plans increased emphasis on measurable, data-driven goal setting is an important part of the District improvement Plan and achieving the Board's goals. A major part of the Administrator Evaluation Plan is to develop a School Improvement Plan which specifically addresses the district plan. The subcommittee members were interested in planning an end of the year goal setting meeting. And (2) the High School Summer School Plan - the program was approved by the Curriculum Subcommittee and a motion will go before the full Board for approval.

Mr. Lovely reported the following with respect to Summer School 2005:

Registration for Plymouth Middle School Summer School 2005 will be held at Harry S. Fisher Middle School on June 23 & 24 @ 8:30 a.m. - 2:30 p.m. Classes will be held Monday - Thursday beginning on July 5, 2005 and ending August 4, 2005 . Additional information may be obtained by contacting the Harry S. Fisher Guidance Office at


Plymouth Board of Education Page 4 March 9, 2005

Registration for Plymouth High School Summer School 2005 will be held at Terryville High School on June 23 & 24, 2005, 8:30 a.m. - 2:30 p.m., and June 27 & 28, 2005, 3:30 p.m. - 6:30 p.m. Classes will be held Monday - Thursday beginning on July 5, 2005 and ending August 4, 2005 . Additional information may be obtained by contacting the Terryville High School Guidance Office at 314-2778.

Upon completion of this Curriculum Subcommittee Report, the following motion was made:

MOTION: To implement the summer school program for 2005. Motion Velma McConnell , seconded Dan Gentile motion passed unanimously.

Information with respect to the magnet schools are as follows: Mr. Lovely indicated applications for Rotella and Maloney Magnet Schools will be accepted until the close of business -

4 p.m. - on Friday, March 11, 2005 . Waterbury Arts Magnet School applications will be accepted up to and including Wednesday, March 23, 2005 at 2 p.m.

B. Facilities - Ray Engle, Chair

Mr. Engle indicated that Board members had copies of the Project Status Report concerning the new school and renovation projects. Things are moving along and we are proceeding "full steam ahead".

C. Finance - Patricia Budnick, Chair

The Finance Sub-Committee met prior to the Board of Education Meeting. The accounts by facilities report was reviewed and will be forwarded to the Town of Plymouth Board of Finance.

D. Negotiations - Lisa Moriarty, Chair

The Negotiations Subcommittee met prior to the Board meeting to discuss the superintendent's contract.

E. Personnel - Roxanne Perugino, Chair

Mrs. Perugino reported that the personnel sub-committee met with the Superintendent prior to the Board meeting and approved all of his recommendations.

F. Policy - Velma McConnell , Chair

No Report

Plymouth Board of Education Page 5 March 9, 2005

G. Safety & Transportation - Ray Engle, Chair

No Report at this time

H. Education Connection - Patricia Budnick

No Report at this time

I. Student Representatives

Cassandra Huizenga - The Academic Bowl Challenge will be held at Bristol Eastern High School on Saturday, March 12, 2005 at 12 p.m. ; a Prom Fashion Show will be held on Friday, March 18, 2005 at 6:30p.m. at Terryville High School and the Leo Club is holding an Easter Egg Hunt on March 19, 2005 .

Sophia Sopczneski - The boy's basketball team is playing their state game at home on March 10, 2005 at 7 p.m. A pilot program in conjunction with the Diversity Club and approximately 50 grade 8 students from Harry S. Fisher Middle School will take place on May 26, 2005 . Grade 8 students will visit Terryville High School and team up with high school students for the day in order to familiarize themselves and get them prepared for high school.

Sean Link - Excused absence


Mrs. Doiron , Director of Pupil Personnel/District Administrator in Charge

A district-wide preschool program will be available at Plymouth Center School for the 2005 -2006 school year. This free of charge program is open to all residents of Plymouth and Terryville. Transportation is not provided. Regular education students for AM or PM sessions will be selected by a lottery. Students will meet Monday through Thursday for 2 ½ hours per session.

The following criteria needs to be met for children who will be considered for limited slots available for the peer models: (1) must be 4 years old before January 1, 2006 ;

(2) independent with toileting skills; and (3) strong social and language skills. Selections will be made by placing the child's name in an application pool which will be divided by gender.

Plymouth Board of Education Page 6 March 9, 2005

Forms need to be returned to Prospect Street , Main Street , or Plymouth Center Schools or the Plymouth Board of Education Office by April 1, 2005 . The lottery selection will take place on April 8, 2005 and parents will be notified by April 12 th if their child has been selected for the Preschool Program.

Questions regarding the Preschool Program should be directed to Mrs. Doiron, Director of Pupil Personnel or to Mrs. Basoli, Secretary at 314-8003.

Mr. Lovely - Director of Curriculum and Instruction

All information was covered under the Curriculum Subcommittee Report.

Mr. Rafaniello , Director of Technology

Mr. Rafaniello thanked the following students for taping tonight's Board of Education Meeting: From Harry S. Fisher Middle School, Brian Luba, Scott Mamrosh, Conner Raymond, Pat Know and Bethany Tamburrino; From Terryville High School, Rich Keator and Brian Shane; and Ms. Fran Block, Club Advisor.

Mr. Perusse , Business Manager

"Thank you" to the Wollenberg and Worhunsky Companies for bringing our students home safely during the snowstorm on Monday, March 7, 2005 . Mr. Perusse commended the State Highway Department for an excellent job during the storm and the help they provided to our students and community.

Dr. Distasio , Superintendent

Dr. Distasio welcomed Mrs. Aiudi and members of the Student Council.

The following items were highlighted by Dr. Distasio:

Prospect Street School & Main Street School

• March 16, 2005 - Grade 1 field trip to University of Hartford to see the play

• "Curious George".

• March 16, 2005 - Kindergarten Transition Night - 6:30 p.m. @ Plymouth Center School

• March 21 - Spring Literacy Night for Kindergarten students, 6:30 p.m. @ Plymouth Center School

Plymouth Board of Education Page 7 March 9, 2005

• March 23, 2005 - Distribution of Report Cards elementary school students.

• April 5 - Kindergarten Registration from 2-7 p.m. & April 6, 9 a.m. - 2:30 p.m.

Plymouth Center School

• March 3, 2005 - Read Across America

• March 7 - 11, 2005 - Jump Rope for Heart

• March 16, 2005 - Kindergarten Transition Night at 6:30 p.m.

• March 21, 2005 - Spring Literacy Night at 6:30 p.m.

• March 24, 2005 - Program presented by African Storyteller, Robbi Kumalo at 1:30 p.m.

• April 12, 2005 , Kindergarten Registration from 9 a.m. - 11:30 a.m. and from

1 p.m. - 3 p.m. for students with last names beginning with A - K.

• April 13, 2005 , Kindergarten Registration from 9 a.m. - 11:30 a.m. and from

1 p.m. - 3 p.m. for students with last names beginning with L - Z.

Harry S. Fisher Middle School

• March 8, 2005 - Washington , D.C. parent meeting @ 6:30 p.m.

• March 15, 2005 - PTA Enrichment Program for students in Grades 6 & 7

Bullying & Teasing; Grade 8, Drugs & Alcohol

• March 18, 2005 - Dance for grade 6 students from 2:30 p.m. - 4:30 p.m. and Grade 7 & 8 students from 6:30 p.m. - 9 p.m.

• March 29, 2005 - Washington , D.C. Trip for 8 th grade students.

Dr. Distasio attended a dinner performance by Mrs. Macinaus' class entitled "Murder at the Terryvilla" on February 16, 2005 at Terryville High School . The students wrote, performed and prepared the food for the performance. The students did an excellent job and a good time was had by all. The performance will be aired on Channel 16 for all to watch.

Dr. Distasio addressed the recent arrests of Terryville High School students concerning drug related activities. He indicated these incidents are currently under investigation by law enforcement and school administration, therefore, specific comments cannot not be made with respect to the individual cases. Dr. Distasio emphasized that the policy of the Plymouth Board of Education strictly prohibits the use of drugs or alcohol on or about school property or activities. It is the intent of the Plymouth Board of Education to provide a drug-free school environment.

Dr. Distasio indicated drug abuse to be a community issue and needs to be looked at by the community as a whole. It cannot be addressed by any one part of the community, solely by the Police Department; our schools, parents and community agencies.

Plymouth Board of Education Page 8 March 9, 2005

Dr. Distasio informed the viewing audience that support is needed in the form of a School Resource Officer for our Police Department; Health Teachers in our schools; parents to constantly speak with their children beginning at an early age; community organizations and church support. He thanked the Mayor and Town Council for scheduling a meeting of community leaders. Hopefully, by working together, we can make a difference.

11. Public Comments Regarding Agenda or Non-Agenda Items

Mr. Jim Murdock - 44 Minor Road - Terryville , CT 06786 - Mr. Murdock (1) commented on the article that appeared in the newspaper with respect to the drug situation at Terryville High School; (2) questioned the article in the Bristol Press with respect to textbooks; and (3) questioned if Plymouth Center School was going to be closed per the article in the Bristol Press.

12. Business of the Board

Mrs. Perugino - No comments

Mrs. McConnell - A "thank you" went out to all of those who took part in the guidance presentation by Harry S. Fisher Middle School; student council members were recognized for their attendance at the Board meeting; and the Parks & Recreation Department will be holding a course on Bicycle Safety on March 21 st or 27 th , 2005.

Mrs. Leonhardt - Excused absence.

Mr. Engle - "Thank You" to Dr. Distasio and Mr. Murdock for their comments. The drug and/or alcohol issues need to be taken seriously. These issues are not new in any community. No department in this community is taking this lightly. We all need to work together as a community.

Mrs. Budnick - Concurs with Dr. Distasio. As a Board, we are more than willing to work with the community to help correct the problem that we have in the school system and town wide because drugs are becoming an issue at this point.

Mrs. Moriarty - The guidance department of Harry S. Fisher Middle School gave an excellent presentation. Some wonderful ideas were presented, i.e. the student who shared her portfolio for Board members to review.

Plymouth Board of Education Page 9 March 9, 2005

Mr. Gentile - An excellent presentation of "Murder at the Terryvilla" was performed by students of Mrs. Macinaus' class. A good time was had by all. Mr. Gentile also indicated that he was pleased that the high school project was moving forward. He can't wait for a shovel to be put to the ground. It's been a long time coming.

Mrs. Kulesa - excused absence

Mr. Perugino - To Mr. Dolecki and Mrs. Scoville, thank you for attending tonight's meeting. To the Board of Education, Police Department, Town Council, Mayor's Office schools and administrators , working together with the community, I am sure we can make a difference. The public should know that we are not "putting our heads in the sand" rather we are out there looking and trying to do our best.

13. Next Regular Board Meeting

Mr. Perugino stated the next Regular Board of Education Meeting will be held on April 13, 2005 at 7 p.m. , Terryville High School cafeteria.

14. Adjournment

MOTION: To adjourn the meeting at 8:03 p.m. Motion Ray Engle seconded

Dan Gentile, motion passed unanimously.

Respectfully submitted,


Velma McConnell


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