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Superintendent's News

Superintendent Report for Thursday, November 13, 2014

Thursday, 13 November 2014 18:33

My report to the School Committee for Thursday, November 13, 2014 can be viewed here.  This report includes information on the recent MASS-MASC Joint Conference, the MSAN Student Conference, the implementation of building use fees, and recommended start dates for the 2015-2016 school year.


Override Scenarios

Tuesday, 11 November 2014 20:22

On Monday, November 10, 2014, I presented two important documents to the Board of Selectmen (a video of the presentation is available at  The main document outlines several override budget scenarios (referred to as the "90%" and "65%" scenarios) and provides detail on the school programs that I believe would be considered for enhancement, maintenance or elimination, depending on available revenue going forward.  Among other things, available revenues will be largely affected by the size of an operating override that the Selectmen are considering placing on the ballot for consideration by voters in May.  The second document provides a brief history of the enrollment discussion in Brookline since 2007.

While we have attempted to provide workable options and have discussed each with the School Committee prior to this Board of Selectmen presentation, the specific examples outlined in the override scenarios do not reflect "decisions" by the School Committee or "recommendations" from the Superintendent at this point.  Rather, I have provided the Board of Selectmen, at their request, with an early look (several months earlier than usual) at the budgetary and programmatic tradeoffs that I will need to weigh and recommend for School Committee consideration under different revenue scenarios.

The next step in our planning will be to continue to provide information to the Board of Selectmen as they deliberate the specific override question(s), a process which we understand will conclude in January 2015.  In parallel, I will discuss with the Board of Selectmen and School Committee a budget that assumes no additional revenues (a "no override" budget) for fiscal year 2016.  The actual FY2016 budget will reflect updated information about enrollment numbers, state funding to Brookline, health care costs, and so forth which becomes available throughout the first half of 2015, as well as robust public engagement and input, before final recommendations from me and decisions from the School Committee take place.


I understand that this presentation will raise many questions and look forward to the continued deliberation of possible override questions by the Board of Selectmen, as well as the community discussion of these priorities.  I will continue to provide you with information as we work through this process.   


Short-Term Space Options (FY2016-FY2020)

Sunday, 02 November 2014 19:20

As many of you know, the Schools are currently considering a long list of options to deal with our short-term capital needs (town-wide), which will accommodate our children while long-term building projects get underway and are completed.  While the School Committee has reaffirmed its long-term commitment to the neighborhood k-8 model and small class sizes throughout the past years of space planning consultancies and efforts, we will need to consider short-term choices that may need to work differently based on the space we have available.

The attached "Short-Term Space:  Needs and Options (FY2016-FY2020)" document provides an overview of space at each school in the system, along with plans for creating space where such strategies exist.  However, its major purpose is to outline options available to the School Committee as we consider important next steps and plans for maintaining excellent schools during these difficult times.  

This material was formally presented to the School Committee at their meeting on Thursday, October 30, 2014 (a video of the presentation is available at  These options and projects are subject to many external factors, including the availability of funding to complete them.  This conversation represents the beginning of this important process.  


FY2015 Hiring Profile

Sunday, 26 October 2014 16:53

Click here to view Dr. Allen's presentation of our FY2015 Hiring Profile to the School Committee, which was discussed on Tuesday, October 14, 2014.


Superintendent Report for Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Monday, 13 October 2014 10:22

My report to the School Committee for Tuesday, October 14, 2014 can be viewed here.  This report includes information on the upcoming Minority Student Achievement Network (MSAN) Student Conference.


Presentation to the Board of Selectmen (10-7-2014)

Monday, 13 October 2014 10:20

On Tuesday, October 7, 2014, I presented our "Preliminary Look at Budgetary Implications" of a potential Override to the Board of Selectmen.  My presentation is available here and a video of the presentation can be seen here (


Superintendent Report for Thursday, October 2, 2014

Friday, 03 October 2014 22:02

My report to the School Committee for Thursday, October 2, 2014 is attached.  This report includes information on the Deputy Superintendent for Administration and Finance search process, as well as the new Brookline Community Foundation (BCF) Scholarship Program for Brookline High School students.  The flyer for this scholarship program can be found here.


Pilot Parent and Staff Survey

Wednesday, 01 October 2014 20:04

 As part of our commitment to delivering an extraordinary education for every child, the Public Schools of Brookline will begin, this winter, to collect standard feedback surveys from all parents, guardians, and staff in the district.  Please see my letter regarding the piloting of these surveys in October, 2014.


Devotion School Education Plan

Sunday, 21 September 2014 17:49

We are very pleased to make public the Edward Devotion School Education Plan and Appendices, which were submitted to the Massachusetts School Building Authority (MSBA) as part of our ongoing efforts to renovate and expand this PK-8 school.  This plan details our goal to ensure that this building program is focused on the educational needs of our students and their teachers.  The document will be one of the key aspects of our continuing discussion with MSBA officials as we move toward next steps in this upcoming project.


School Committee Opts for MCAS in 2015

Sunday, 21 September 2014 17:28

On Thursday, September 18, 2014, the Brookline School Committee voted 8-0 to accept my recommendation for Brookline to stay with MCAS for 2015.  See my letter to parents outlining the reasoning for this final recommendation here.


Superintendent Report for Thursday, September 18, 2014

Sunday, 21 September 2014 17:15

My report to the School Committee for Thursday, September 18, 2014 can be accessed here.  This report includes detailed information on our enrollments, as well as recognition of our National Merit Semifinalists.  

The following supporting documents can also be downloaded as follows:  PSB Overall Enrollment, FY2015 Class Size, Kindergarten Buffer Zone Assignments, Materials Fee Program Enrollments, METCO Enrollments, and Summer Professional Development.


Superintendent Report for Thursday, September 4, 2014

Sunday, 21 September 2014 17:07

My report to the School Committee for Thursday, September 4, 2014 is available here.  This report details new administrative hires, a report on our school opening activities, preliminary information on enrollments, and my final recommendation on PARCC testing for 2015.


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