School Leadership Team Minutes 3/17/2016

In attendance:


Sherry French (Parent)

Janet Miller (Parent)

Parent Members

Kevin Daly (PTA Delegate)


Rhonda James

Kyle Pfortmiller (Chair)


Justyn Diaz (Student Government President)

Faculty/Admin Members:

Miriam Nightengale (Principal)

Dmitriy Fabyshenko (Faculty + UFT)

Erin Flaherty (Faculty)

Naeta Rohr (Faculty)

Kim Terranova (Faculty + UF



  1. Meeting called to order at 4:45pm
  2. Approval of Previous Minutes

The minutes from March 17, 2016 were approved.

  • Two main projects discussed at this SLT meeting: CEP & Grading Survey “Next Steps”
    1. CEP
    2. a. Should we use midterm and finals grades to measure student learning? Regents scores? How will we measure progress now? Regents are fairly stable. Meeting our goals with staff members but the main focal points should not be increasing state test results. This year the state test is untimed with fewer questions but a whole different ball game. MOSL: Lacks value but will be a more likely accepted measure by the superintendent.[1]
    3. c. Has increased
  • Community day: led to increased student participation
  1. e. Scholarships (received by our students)? Midyear regents results? Attendance? College matriculation? CSS grads? Other schools don’t share scholarship rates/course passing rates (peer schools) as information sources. Contextualizing results is most interesting to me. CU courses:

-Which classes are available for students to select?

-What kinds of classes can they take?

-What grades are our students earning in those courses?

What are our school’s PSAT & SAT results? (To be discussed over two meetings.)

  1. Follow-up to Grading Survey Discussion Questions:
  • Open to interpretation: Some of the vagueness is in order to avoid leading questions.

Day-to-day assignments showing “effort” grade, where effort shows silently. Effort is a component of “knowing the answers” part of grades.

  • PTA meeting: Different ways that grades are reported to pupilpath are stress producing for parents. “When has the page been updated?” function. If pupilpath is not able to be changed, can teachers put in when they last updated into a note in pupilpath? Or via e-mail?
  • Fear of failure: different definitions of failure. Failure is a thing vs. failure is a thing that applies to me, v. failure as a struggle. Pedagogical implications difference in the kinds of failure possible. Grade v. experiment.
    • We will return to the question of failure…
      • effort
      • creative thinking (should there be a way to grade both of these?) conflict over if the two things could be graded effectively.
    • Vagueness of the survey for further inquiry
    • Curve in a classroom setting…disconnect between students-parents-teachers over the philosophy of everyone getting a 90+ (About the students needing to do everything possible for 90 or above.)
  1. Facilities Updates:
    1. DOE Capital Plan meeting: was not attended by SLT Members
    2. New Website by Council for Education Equity (outside advocacy group) Estimates City DOE is underfunded $1.4 million per year from the state; we are getting less money from the state now than before 2007.
  • History: Columbia tried to donate the land to DOE to build CSS a permanent school site. CSS needs someone to donate the money for the construction by the School Construction Authority. Original funds for building construction was $5.5-6 million divided between CSS and Teachers College School.
  1. DOE and new development: school capacity and site planning do not factor into development planning in the city.
  1. Political Outreach: District funding “Participatory Budgeting” funding via funding from our community (Levine’s office.)
    1. Four things directly for our school on the ballot.
      1. Bring artificial turf.
      2. Fixing up the science lab.
  • Improving the auditorium.
  1. Electricity improvement.
  1. All residents 14-years or older should vote. It is possible to get votes at CSS. Many students at CSS can vote. Polls can be brought to CSS for parents and students.
  1. IEP subcommittee: we will have needs next year (Classroom space, teachers.)
  • Tabling Community Service Discussion


Next meeting:

  1. Grading Survey Inquiry: Regents data, PSAT & SAT data
  2. Survey question: effort, creative thinking, failure, 90%
  3. Community Service Discussion

4.Budget meeting?


Next Meeting: April 21, 2016

[1] Goal 1 –Over the 2015-16 school year, to better align our 7-year course sequences in the humanities and STEM to the new CCLS and associated assessments so that these courses incrementally develop students’ abilities to master increasingly complex tasks and afford them opportunities to engage in experiences that are related to and enrich their exposure to the content and grade level of the course, thereby increasing their state test scores by 5%, as measured by the scaled scores distributed by the State Education Dept, by the end of the 2015-16 school year.