The week in government: Decision on MCAS/PARCC this spring, Public Safety complex budget, Main St update, and ARHS enrollments

by beth on December 14, 2015

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It’s the “Holy Cow!” of committee meeting weeks in Southborough, with 19 already scheduled. It seems that everyone is trying to get business out of the way before Christmas week.

With what sounds like a controversial item on one of the agendas, it’s a good time to insert some school news I never shared. . .

Last month, the state Board of Ed finally took their big vote on MCAS vs. PARCC standardized testing. They elected in favor of neither.

Instead they plan to develop a new version of MCAS incorporating some elements from PARCC. (Though some have publicly worried that it will actually be PARCC with only elements of MCAS.)

The plan is for a spring 2017 launch. For this spring’s tests, they will allow schools (like ours) that administered MCAS last year to decide for themselves whether to use MCAS or PARCC. (Read about that here.)

The combined committees for Southborough, Northborough and Algonquin will vote on that issue this week. (I’d be highly surprised if they don’t elect to stick with MCAS. But I don’t have any inside knowledge on the vote.)

Now here are the scheduled meetings along with my selected highlights from the agendas. All these are open to the public, so you’re welcome to stop on by. 

Be aware that changes to the schedule are known to happen throughout the week. For an updated look, visit the town website.

Monday, December 14, 2015

  • Southborough Trails Committee, 8:30 AM @ Recreation Office, South Union Building, 21 Highland Street (agenda) Agenda Highlights: Project updates on Fayville Dam/Bay Circuit Trail and Sudbury Reservoir Trail
  • Public Safety Study Committee, 7:00 pm @ Cordaville Hall, Rooms A and B, 9 Cordaville Road (agenda) Agenda Highlights: Discussion with Advisory re budget guidelines
  • Historical Commission, 7:15 pm @ Town House, Hearing Room, 17 Common Street (agenda) Agenda Highlights: Town Planner discussion on adaptive reuse; Stone Bridges; Nichols House
  • Advisory Committee, 7:30 pm @ Cordaville Hall, Rooms A and B, 9 Cordaville Road (agenda,  website with communications & packet materials) Agenda Highlights: Debt Capacity and Uses Subcommittee presentation; Comparison of legal expenses with other towns
  • Debt Capacity and Uses Subcommittee, 7:30 pm @ Cordaville Hall, Rooms A and B, 9 Cordaville Road (agenda) Agenda Highlights: Presentation to Advisory Committee – Overview of Southborough financials for next 30 yrs as relates to new debt

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

  • Trottier School Council, 2:30 pm @ Trottier Middle School, Room 190, 49 Parkerville Road (agenda) Agenda Highlights: Student Government update
  • Board of Trustees Southborough Library, 6:00 pm @ Southborough Library, Eaton Room, 25 Main Street (agenda) Agenda Highlights: Design & Planning Grants vs. Construction Grants discussion
  • Board of Selectmen, 6:30 pm @ Town House, Hearing Room, 17 Common Street (agenda with packet) Agenda Highlights: Update from Main St Design Working Group, Debt presentation, Joint meeting with Advisory Public Safety, and Debt Capacity committees for Debt report on Public Safety project, FY15 Audit Report, and Town Clerk update
  • Advisory Committee, 7:30 pm @ Town House, Hearing Room, 17 Common Street (agenda,  website with communications & packet materials) Agenda Highlights: Joint Meeting with BOS and Public Safety Study Committee to discuss Debt Capacity findings and public safety complex proposals
  • Debt Capacity and Uses Subcommittee, 7:30 pm @ Cordaville Hall, Rooms A and B, 9 Cordaville Road (agenda) Agenda Highlights: Discussion with BOS and Advisory on Southborough financials for next 30 yrs as relates to new debt
  • Public Safety Study Committee, 7:30 pm @ Town House, Hearing Room, 17 Common Street (agenda) Agenda Highlights: Discussion with Advisory and BOS re budget guidelines
  • Northborough – Southborough Regional School Committee – Operational Budget Subcommittee, 7:30 pm @ Neary School, Office of the Superintendent, Conference Room 53, Parkerville Road (agenda)

Wednesday, December 16, 2015

  • Board of Assessors, 4:00 pm @ Town House, Hearing Room, 17 Common Street (agenda) Agenda Highlights: Hiring process to fill open Assistant position
  • Southborough Housing Authority, 6:30 pm @ Colonial Gardens, 49 Boston Road (agenda)
  • Combined Northborough, Southborough, and Northborough – Southborough Regional School Committees with Superintendency Union, 6:00 pm @ Algonquin Regional High School, 79 Bartlett Street, Northborough (agenda) Agenda Highlights: Approval to administer MCAS or PARCC this spring [Editor’s Note: See MCAS/PARCC explanation at top of this post], ’16-’17 calendar, Solar Feasibility Study update, and Director of Instructional Technology and Digital Learning update
  • Northborough – Southborough Regional School Committee, 7:00 pm @ Algonquin Regional High School, 79 Bartlett Street, Northborough (agenda) Agenda Highlights: Enrollments and enrollment projections by New England School Development Council
  • Health & Wellness Advisory Council, 8:00 AM @ Algonquin Regional High School, Room D110i, 79 Bartlett Street (agenda) Agenda Highlights: Presentation on ARHS Metrowest Adolescent Health Survey Results; update on opiate crisis; impact testing

Thursday, December 17, 2015

  • Green Technology and Recycling Committee, 6:30 pm @ Southborough Library, 25 Main Street (agenda) Agenda Highlights: Transfer Station fines by-law proposal & commercial dumping options

(Photo by Susan Fitzgerald)

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