This week all Boston Public School students from sixth to 12th grade are learning about how to engage in positive interactions with their peers, whether it's in person, via text or online. During BPS' first-ever 24/7 Respect Week all middle and high school students are watching a video called Stay Out of the Box. After watching the video students will participate in classroom discussions about how bias-based behavior and sexually explicit comments and images can be damaging to themselves and their peers. They'll learn about the dangers of posting derogatory and inappropriate messages on social media. The video is co-produced by the Boston Student Advisory Council (BSAC) and the Office of Equity.
The Boston School Committee is appointed by the mayor, but it wasn't always that way. Some people like that the seven-member committee is appointed and others would prefer to go back to an elected committee. There's also the option of a hybrid governance of elected and appointed. The school committee used to be a 13-member elected committee until a public vote in 1991 changed the governance to its current form. Back then there were lots of issues with having an elected committee, including not all neighborhoods being represented fairly.
State Sen. Sonia Chang-Díaz has been receiving an education in persistence the last few years as she has continually fought for legislation that would reform education fund across the state. On Wednesday, she led a press conference to once again announce a bill to reform education funding. Last session the House and Senate passed their own education reform bills, but couldn't agree on a funding reform package before the legislative session ended. So that led to legislators, municipalities, teachers, students and education advocates, coming together on Wednesday to promote the passage of the Education Promise Act. The bill would reform the state's education funding formula and better serve students across Massachusetts.
The community is invited to a public meeting to discuss the Boston Public Schools' BuildBPS plan on Jan. 10 at English High School. Interim Superintendent Laura Perille, a Jamaica Plain resident, and school committee members will be on hand to discuss the plan, its impacts on neighborhoods and to answer questions. The BuildBPS plan calls for some old schools to close, new schools to be built, and other schools to expand, including growing the amount of K-6 schools. Jamaica Plain's Manning School wants to be one of the schools to add a sixth grade. In December the school committee voted to close the former West Roxbury High School building, which houses Urban Science Academy and West Roxbury Academy.
Question: What is District 6 City Councilor Matt O'Malley's favorite Girl Scout Cookie? Jamaica Plain's Daisy Troop 67633 recently learned the answer to that very important question at the troop's first-ever Girl Scout Cookie Booth at the Curley K-8 School. O'Malley purchased several boxes of cookies, including Tagalongs, Thin Mints and his favorite -- Peanut Butter Patties -- on Dec. 20 from his local cookie entrepreneurs. Girl Scouts of Eastern Massachusetts’ Cookie Program runs through early March and you can locate Girl Scout Cookies by zip code at girlscoutcookies.org.