New Bedford Tech Committee Addresses Student Placement and Teacher Support

The Greater New Bedford Regional Technical School Committee recently convened to discuss a series of issues ranging from student placements in freshman exploratory programs to the expansion of teacher support initiatives.

One notable issues addressed was the concern that 26 students had not been placed in any shops, which raised questions about the demographic characteristics of these students and the overall equity of the placement process. This revelation prompted a call for a review to ensure fair and equitable opportunities for all students. In response to this situation, there was a discussion about the need for a thorough analysis of placement data across all student subgroups to establish equitable criteria for student success.

The committee also heard updates on the instructional support coach program, which plays a role in teacher development and student achievement. This program, characterized by its collaborative and non-evaluative approach, provides individualized support to teachers, focusing on personal goals and diverse needs. The instructional coach outlined their strategy, which includes a variety of support mechanisms such as assistance with lesson plans, research-based strategies, understanding of adolescent psychology, parent communication, and even stress and anxiety reduction. The coach’s support extends to offering lure and test prep assistance.

In addition to the instructional coach’s work, the committee discussed the expansion of the non-professional status teacher program. The plan aims to increase class visits and small group collaborations and expects both returning teachers and new hires for the next year.

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Moreover, the committee was informed of the progress made by educators on emergency licenses, with 17 educators showing improvement. The superintendent recognized the efforts of the dean of exploratory and admissions and underscored a report on enhancing parent communication. The assistant superintendent presented achievements within the school, highlighting projects such as a cultural diversity initiative, a poetry recitation contest, and the remarkable performance of students in math assessments.

The technical programs’ achievements were a focal point of the meeting, with details on the progress of students in various fields such as Collision Repair, Cosmetology, Diesel Services, and Information Technology, among others. The discussion also shed light on the Cooperative Education placements that have successfully integrated over 255 students into the workforce, with more than 25 new sites added this year.

The committee approved several items during the meeting, including the Student Opportunity Act plan, the proposed school calendar, and overnight travel for engineering students. Moreover, preparation for future committee meetings was deliberated, with options for dates and times being discussed and determined.

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It is also noteworthy that student achievements were celebrated, with reports on the Spring Fling, Skills USA Districts, and senior superlatives among the BT students.

Note: This meeting summary was generated by AI, which can occasionally misspell names, misattribute actions, and state inaccuracies. This summary is intended to be a starting point and you should review the meeting record linked above before acting on anything you read. If we got something wrong, let us know. We’re working every day to improve our process in pursuit of universal local government transparency.

Superintendent:
Michael Watson
School Board Officials:
Michael Shea, Cynthia Marland, Randall C. Durrigan, Wayne Oliveira, Rita M. Ribeiro, Frederick J. Toomey, Patrick Walsh (Atty.)

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