Daily Buzz | A Round of Welcomes
Also a very loose summary of the first third of School Committee
Wow, friends. There are quite a lot of new faces around here today. Let me take a minute to show you around. (If you’re an old-timer, feel free to scroll down.)
The Buzz is an online local news publication serving Burlington, MA. We (I say “we” because it sounds better, but it’s mostly me) grew out of a need for more awareness and connection within our community. I write about things that are going on in the community, what’s shaking with town government, and occasionally a hot topic like Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion and why it’s important in Burlington, the history of Pride in our town, and, most recently, The Situation With The Schools.
I email you every morning with a quick hit with a pretty picture from around town. I call it a 3-minute read, but I’m a slow reader so I just kinda cut the time it takes me to read it in half and that’s my estimate. At any rate, it’s a brief note that aims to be relevant to you as Burlingtonians.
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The goal is for all residents of voting age (and younger!) to be aware of what’s going on in town and how it affects them, so they feel informed and compelled to vote in local elections and get involved in local issues.
I, by the way, am Nicci - an educator, author, and mom, among many other things. Read more from me at Nicci’s Notes.
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School Committee Recap
I didn’t capture everything today, because I was amilliontasking, but here are some key points.
During public participation:
A DEI policy and incident reporting policy were requested to be added to the website.
A parent advocated for services for students classified as gifted and talented.
A parent asked the Committee if they were aware of the collection of situations I wrote about yesterday. He also asked if there would be an investigation into “the incident,” but I wasn’t clear on which incident because there are so many co-occurring situations. School Committee Chair Ms. Bond said they can’t comment on personnel issues and anything that needed to be discussed would be done in executive session.
Another parent asked the Committee to work with the district to codify standardized procedures for responding to student and parent safety concerns as well as a social media policy for staff.
Elementary enrollment is over 1,600 and will climb more over the summer; Fox Hill is getting close to Francis Wyman in terms of enrollment.
The state will no longer distributing at-home COVID tests next year. This is definitely not what I thought this bullet would be about. 🤣
Mental health issues are pervasive, and schools are students’ de facto mental health provider. Mental health services improve outcomes - like lowering incarceration rates and improving attendance. We have many mental health & socioemotional support developments coming in the next year-plus. This was a long and thorough presentation and I, at least, walked away with the message that mental health is a priority in our district and there is much in the works to improve mental health outcomes among students and staff in coming years.
Dr. Conti’s evaluation by the School Committee was shared. He received high marks and much positive commentary was shared.
I’m missing a bunch of stuff and have reached the upper limit of my capacity to consume more information. Watch here if you want to know more about any agenda items.
Today in Burlington
I neglected to announce this earlier in the week, but I do want to encourage my fellow neighbors to head out to the dedication today of the newest conservation parcel, donated by GTH Homes LLC.
From Conservation’s John Keeley,
“This parcel directly abuts, and will be added to, the Mill Pond Conservation Area. A new trail provides access to the Mill Pond land directly from Chandler Road.”
Hope you can be there!
10:00 AM - Join the Conservation Commission for the dedication of its newest parcel. There will be parking on the Mill Pond Lane cul-de-sac.
12:00 PM - Planning Board meets to appoint a new Assistant Planner. (Join via WebEx)
5:30 PM - Community Meal at the Presbyterian Church - all are welcome!
That’s it for today, friends. I can’t believe it’s only Wednesday. Talk soon,