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Superintendent's News

Superintendent's News

Override Study by Board of Selectmen

Wednesday, 17 December 2014 22:54

See slides from the terrific presentation by Sean Cronin, Deputy Town Administrator, to the Board of Selectmen - "What We've Learned and Next Steps."  (


Driscoll School Statement of Interest (SOI)

Wednesday, 17 December 2014 22:04

We were recently notified by the Massachusetts School Building Authority (MSBA) that our Driscoll School SOI had not been invited into the Eligibility Period at this time.  A copy of the letter from MSBA is available here


Short-Term Space Recommendations (FY2016 through FY2020)

Wednesday, 17 December 2014 21:59

Attached are our short-term elementary space recommendations for Devotion, Pierce and Baker schools.  The School Committee is expected to vote on this plan at their meeting on Thursday, December 18, 2014.


Superintendent Report for Thursday, December 18, 2014

Wednesday, 17 December 2014 21:40

My report to the School Committee for Thursday, December 18, 2014, is available here.  This report includes recognition of a Posse Scholar at Brookline High School, an update on the implementation of community and staff surveys, and information about the Girls Who Build Conference that BHS students recently attended.


MSAN Student Conference

Tuesday, 09 December 2014 15:05

Eight (8) Brookline High School students attended the Minority Student Achievement Network (MSAN) Student Conference in Ann Arbor, Michigan in October.  See their presentation to the School Committee regarding the action plan that they developed as part of this experience (


Superintendent Report for Thursday, December 4, 2014

Saturday, 06 December 2014 22:20

My report to the School Committee for Thursday, December 4, 2014 can be viewed here.  This report includes our English Language Learner Program data for 2014-2015, the timeline for our staff and parent surveys, our non-property tax revenue presentation, and other important items.  Supporting document regarding the ELL program can be viewed here and the non-property tax revenue presentation can be viewed here.


School Cancellation and Delayed Openings

Friday, 28 November 2014 23:49

Please click here to read about the media outlets and other sources that we use to announce school cancellations and delayed openings.


Gifts to Staff Members

Friday, 28 November 2014 23:46

At this time of year, many teachers and other members of our school staff are confronted with the ethical question of whether or not to accept gifts from our students and their families.  Please click here to read my guidance to families on this important topic.


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.


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