March 14, 2022 Meeting Comparison
We have taken just the section entitled “Final Comments of the School Committee Members” to illustrate that contrary to Massachusetts law, the meeting minutes to do not accurately reflect the meeting. Example 1: Significant omissions in the statements of Mrs. Leighton. Example 2: The following statement was attributed to Mrs. Hurst and she did not actually say it, “The students were all very enthusiastic.” She actually stated, ” It was great to be able to sit there and watch it. They’re so enthusiastic.” Example 3: It was stated that “Mrs. Pelavin attended the musicals at ESS.” She actually did not say in her comments that she attended anything. She stated was she was going to talk about the musical at the High School and Middle School Band and then promoted an upcoming musical at Elm Street School. Example 4: Gino Divito was stated to have said, “it is good to see things coming back to normal.: This is out of context for what he actually said, “it’s definitely cool to see the auditorium finally done again. Like, everything starting to come back to normal, especially as a senior.” Example 5: It was stated that, “Mr. Swartz attended the Grades 6 and 7 musicals and is looking forward to the GHS musical.” This is inaccurate. Mr. Swartz talked about his desire to go to the musicals in the future, he did not say he already went to them, “My wife and I hope to go to the Middle School grade 6 and 7 musical.” Example 6: It was stated of Mr. LaFreniere , “He expressed appreciation to all the school nurses during this difficult time.” Simply not true. He only thanked one nurse, “Just let her know we all appreciate what a great job she did.” Example 7: It was stated that Mrs. Cormier stated, “The budget was very well put together and Dr. Pellegrino provided a very good presentation.” This is factually incorrect. While Mrs. Cormier praised the presentation, she did not even mention Dr. Pellegrino by name.
The problem with the Meeting Minutes is the lack of including most of what was actually said at the meeting and the complete factual inaccuracies. And this is just one small sample of one small part of one meeting. It is obvious that the Meeting Minutes do not come even close to complying with Massachusetts Law. Massachusetts Law mandates that the Meeting Minutes be accurate. Most of what is said is completely omitted and the rest is simply full of errors. And remember, this is just one small segment of one meeting.
What the minutes say
What was actually said
Mrs. Leighton thanked the teachers for their work during this tough year. She is excited to see concerts and other performances by the students.
“I wanted to, ah, echo what Dr. Pellegrino was saying just about thanking the teachers, for, its, we’re two thirds of the way through the year, about, and um, I know as a teacher, but also as a parent like seeing, um, my daughter still come home and they’re still excited about learning. Um, it’s a, it’s says a lot about, just kinda the, um, the stamina and the effort that’s being put in by our teachers. Um, It’s been a tough year, but I know, that um, everyone’s excited but maybe a little bit trepidatious about masks coming off a couple weeks ago, but it seems, you know, I’m not gonna say it, knock on wood. And ah, same thing, very excited to see ,um, the musical events coming back. I know that the band concert, even though there was one of the band concerts delayed last week, but um Mr. Schmidt had a really successful couple performances and the choirs are this week and my little fifth grader gets to sing tomorrow night, so just very excited to see the students performing and getting out there again. So, thank you”
Mrs. Hurst attended the 5th grade band concert. The students were all very enthusiastic. She thanked Katie Abbott and Dan Forte.
“I got to see the 5th grade band, um, do their performance last week. And they were absolutely amazing. It was great to be able to sit there and watch it. They’re so enthusiastic. And one of them was like so excited, he was just like stamping his feet throughout the whole thing. It was just priceless. Um, I wanted to again thank Katie Abbott and Dan Forte. What you didn’t say about Dan though too, is that he’s been really integral at the Safety Committee meetings, with helping with sports-related things and he’s been great with policy stuff when we’ve needed to streamline things. Um, so, that’s about it. Thank you everybody.”
Mrs. Pelavin attended the musicals at ESS. She mentioned that spring sports will be starting soon.
“Well, I was going to talk about the musical at the High School and then the Middle School Band and Chorus, but also Elm Street School is having their musical next week “Frozen.” I think it’s Thursday night, is the performance. So it’s great that people are able to come back in and see the kids and they all get to perform. It’s amazing how it’s all happening at once too right now. And then obviously, Spring Sports will be starting soon, so that’ll be fun as well.
Mayor Nicholson interjected, “Thursday, 6:30pm.”
Gino DiVito said it is good to see things coming back to normal.
“Ah, I want to congratulate Dan again because especially from my prospective as his intern, all the stuff he does and like the stuff I help him with, it’s cool to see how much effort he’s willing to put into our sports, our community. So, congrats him again, and, it’s definitely cool to see the auditorium finally done again. Like, everything starting to come back to normal, especially as a senior. So, good things.”
Mr. Swartz attended the Grades 6 and 7 musicals and is looking forward to the GHS musical.
“My wife and I hope to go to the Middle School grade 6 and 7 musical, missed all the others due to my multiple evening meetings, and looking forward to the High School, and I wrote a note to look for more information about the Elm Street School. So I want to make the tour of that. That’s all I have.”
Mr. LaFreniere congratulated Dan Forte on his awards. He expressed appreciation to all the school nurses during this difficult time.
“Just want to congratulate Dan Forte. Well deserved. And also, like I said Becky McCaffrey the Nurse, I mean now, that things are quieting down, you know, she deserves everything. The work that she had to do through all this was , unbelievable, so she deserves a much quieter time for sure. Just let her know we all appreciate what a great job she did. That’s all. Thank you.”
Mrs. Cormier reminded members of how the City has backed the School Budget. The budget was very well put together and Dr. Pellegrino provided a very good presentation.
“I’m going back to earlier in the meeting with that budget presentation as a reminder of how our community backs up these schools. And, I really appreciate that. The presentation was great. It was very thorough, easy to understand which I appreciate as a person who doesn’t always understand numbers. But it was very well put together, so, thank you for that. As everybody has said, it’s great to see the kids being more normal. My family tends to be on the performing arts side of things, my daughter will be on the stage at the High School Thursday, Friday, Saturday, if anybody wants to look for the little red-headed girl. And that’s all thank you.”
Mayor Nicholson showed the miniature City souvenir chair now being made by GHS students.
“My closing comment here this evening is that a couple meetings ago I mentioned that the High School wood shop is going to be making our chairs that we give out. And they made them. So I have the prototype here. One of the things they added on top of the wood shop making the chairs is that our Maker Space Class laser engraved the City Seal on the seats of the chairs as well. It still needs to be stained, but if anyone wants to come up and see what our students are doing in those two great programs that we have there, I want to thank Bill Jacobson Dimetrius Tyros for overseeing those two classes that helped make these possible. I’ll leave that there if anyone wants to take a look after again. They’re still a prototype, and they made a couple different ones, they got creative with them too, some have arms, some don’t, some are different types of chairs, we need to see what they do in the end, but the laser engraved is one of the coolest spots that they did with the manufacturing.”