Music teacher position added at BOE meeting

Published Jul 14, 2018 at 4:00pm

Creation of a new elementary music teacher position, a new agreement for services through Upstate Cerebral Palsy, and sub-committee assignments for the 2018-19 school year have been approved by the Board of Education.

Among the items addressed Thursday:

• An additional elementary music teacher position is needed because about 100 more students than anticipated have signed up for orchestra instruction, school district Superintendent Peter C. Blake told the board. The position would cover orchestra as well as general music, he explained.

The district will be able to fund the position after some other additional positions were reduced since the 2018-19 budget was approved, Blake said.

The position primarily will be split between Bellamy and Denti elementary schools, Blake noted. It is expected to be filled this summer, and salary will depend on experience, he added.

• The board approved a new agreement with Community Health and Behavioral Services of Upstate Cerebral Palsy (UCP), beginning on or about Sept. 1 this year and ending on or about Aug. 31, 2019.

The agreement, to involve psychiatric and social work services, is for students and families and will be based at Staley Elementary School, Blake said after the meeting. Staley was selected based on its size and student population, he commented, adding that the district seeks to provide families with as much support as possible; Staley is the largest of the Rome district’s seven elementary schools for grades K-6, with an opening-month enrollment in 2017-18 that surpassed the second-largest school by about 200 students.

The district may seek to extend the service to other schools, Blake observed.

There will be one UCP staffer on-site, said Blake, who noted that the program is at no cost to the school district. He said his understanding is that UCP is reimbursed through Medicaid for the program.

The service is for students and families that may need support, and will be based on referrals and evaluations, Blake explained.

He added “the concept is essentially that UCP is operating a clinic within the building.”

• The board’s sub-committee assignments that were agreed upon for 2018-19 include five categories.

Buildings and Grounds — Paul Hagerty is the chair. Other members are Richard Hitchings and Lawrence Posselt.

Finance — Paul Fitzpatrick is the chair. Other members include John Leonard and Leigh Loughran.

Instruction and Services — Stephen Hampe is the chair. Other members are Fitzpatrick and Hagerty.

Personnel — Fitzpatrick is the chair, but may soon defer to another board member. The committee also includes Hitchings, Loughran and Jonathon Matwijec-Walda.

Policy —Joseph Mellace is the chair. Other members include Leonard and Matwijec-Walda.

The committees meet at the school district office, 409 Bell Road, to review topics and other recommendations for full board action. They typically meet separately from the full board’s regular meetings.