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Nashua board will consider reducing size of school building committee

Union Leader Correspondent

February 09. 2014 9:09PM

NASHUA — The Board of Education has a full week ahead with meetings scheduled for each of the next four nights.

The full board meets tonight at 7 p.m. in Nashua High North’s Board Room. In addition to regular reports from Superintendent Mark Conrad and the chairmen of the board’s subcommittees, members will review a proposal from the Board of Aldermen to reduce the size of the Joint Special School Building Committee (JSSBC) from 18 members to a committee of eight members.

The new JSSBC would be made up of four members of the Board of Education and four city aldermen. Both boards must approve the proposed change.

Board members will also discuss establishing a new Instructional Technology Committee. In 2010, Nashua’s former Instructional Technology Committee reviewed and recommended a district-wide plan for classroom technology. But over the past four years, many more textbooks and teaching programs have begun using online resources and materials as supplements.

Beyond those resources, teachers are finding additional learning opportunities online and through social media sites. The new committee will explore ways the district can continue to integrate technology in classrooms. The committee will also look at ways to create home-access to web-based materials for all students, particularly those at the middle school and high school level so that technology doesn’t become another factor in the achievement gap between students from low- and high-income families.

Board members will also discuss the latest set of New England Common Assessment Program (NECAP) scores, which were released by the State Dept. of Education last Friday.

On Tuesday, the Finance and Operations Committee will meet at 7:30 p.m. at the School Administration Building.

At the top of the agenda for Finance and Operations is a $136,500 grant application to the state Dept. of Transportation’s Safe Routes to School program to improve sidewalks and crosswalks on the streets adjacent to Charlotte Ave. Elementary School. The goal of the project is to encourage more children to walk or ride bikes to school by providing wider and safer sidewalks.

The Dept. of Transportation awards up to $100,000 for such projects. The city would pay the remaining $36,500.

The committee will also review the policy for Kronos, the new electronic time clock program that city employees are required to use.

Members will also review the January 2014 financial report for the school district.

The full board meets again on Wednesday night at 7 p.m. in the Board Room at Nashua High North for another workshop on Superintendent Mark Conrad’s recommended budget for 2015.

The board is scheduled to review spending proposals for technology and curriculum.

The BOE’s Human Resources Committee meets Thursday night at 6:30 p.m. at the School Administration Building .

The committee will review a proposal from the administration to restructure several jobs in the Central Office and the Information Technology Department. The proposal shifts employees to different jobs and would replace a systems administrator with a systems developer/data base integrator. No additional spending would be required.

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