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Executive Board January 12, 2021

Executive Board Meeting Minutes

January 12, 2021

Present- D. Cicarella, P. Delucia, M. Solli, M. Pantaleo, M. Gallagher, J. Roth, A. Meadows, I. Festa, J.P. Wilson, J. Gonzalez, J. Steele, M. Maloney, M. Mazzacane, M. Soares, P. Stricker, T. Criscuolo, T. Harris, R. Pompano, R. Thomas, J. Leach, Kirsten Hopes-McFadden, C Heiter, D. Ortiz, K. Cudworth, M. Breuler, N. Charest 


1. Call to order at 3:35pm


2.  Motion to accept minutes from December meeting. Motion made                           and seconded and accepted unanimously.


3. Committee Reports


Discussion ensued on the End of the Year Report from last year (2020)and the budget for next year.(2021) 

EOY Report for 2020

Discussion and questions ensued around expenses and income for the 2020 End of Year Report.

Mike Pantaleo, Treasurer  and Pat DeLucia,  Chair of the Finance Committee answered questions around contracted services ,auto payment, and administrative payroll. Dave Cicarella,President clarified the payroll and stipends expenses, and union member benefits. Covid reduced travel expenses this past year.

We are at a 4.1% budget surplus this year.

Motion made to accept the End of the Year Report for 2020 and upon discussion there is unanimous approval.





Vote on budget 2021.Discussion around the budget ensued with specific     questions as to various line item expenditures.Motion to accept and seconded, and the budget passed unanimously.


Co-op HS—A grievance was filed pending one last ditch effort meeting with the HR Director to settle without going to arbitration. HR wants clarity and the next step would be arbitration. The issue was that the SPMT is not structured nor functioning as written in our contract.

   PreK-12 Report

Teachers have been approved for priority testing for Covid. 

Three PDs— Joint Unions Vaccine Town Hall on January 12th, Stewards training on Jan 20th....Sleep Well Virtual workshop on Jan 25th.

Discussion around making vaccinations mandatory such as in West Haven where there would be consequences, and other districts have been insistent. 

Governor Lamont would like to extend paid child care under FFCRA as well as supplemental personnel in schools. HR is telling people that it’s sick time that should be used—clarification needed.

Legislative session is virtual this year.

Minimum wage and PD for paraprofessionals, for SEL requirements in schools. Asking for TRB changes in a bill regarding spouse benefits. TRB wants to expand teacher membership on their board. No local legislator meetings in Branford at Eli’s On the Hill.


Nothing to report as there has been no meeting during Covid.




4.  Old Business

ADA requests—22 teachers have ADA paperwork pending so it should be completed soon in terms of approvals for January 12th.

Carolyn Ross-Lee has left the district as the Title IX Coordinator and discussion ensued around receiving an updated survey at ESUMS that would include more teachers around the topic of school resource officers. The concern is that surveys that do not include sufficient numbers of teachers’ responses from enough schools may not be valid.

Recommendation was made to have Al Meadows of Cross to attend the next meeting and seek clarification on the surveys and participants to determine number of responses from teachers, etc.

The Professional Time Plan (The 30 minute time plan voted in per a 75 % approval of the teachers and building principal) need modification, according to some building administrators . NHowever no  unilateral changes can be made to the 30 minute time plans.

Volunteering of teachers for special education and “asking” teachers, there is often benign pressure placed on teachers. Dave has asked to be the point person to ask teachers for voluntary assignments so that teachers are not volunteering in a room alone with supervisors etc. This has been clarified with central office.

School Re-opening

Discussion around when we will be registered to receive the vaccine as members of the 2b subcategory.

February 1st is when we’ve been told will be the beginning of vaccinations for NHPS.

It is not necessary to be vaccinated in New Haven…teachers can schedule  an appointment for a site close to where we live.

Dave Cicarella will call AFT-CT Executive Vice President John Brady for updated information as to  the vaccine rollout.

Discussion around sick time and FFCRA as being discontinued on 12/31/2020.

Dave Cicarella will ask HR for clarity.

Questions around deadlines for the ADA paperwork were clarified in that teachers can fill that out currently.

Wednesday, January 13th, NOT Thursday and Friday, are when prek-grade 5  teachers need to report before the January 19thhybrid re-opening.

Health Dept. is using different numbers and newer information in order to argue that it’s safe enough to go back.

We’re not getting specific metrics that are being used to determine remote, hybrid, or in-person learning. NHFT has asked for specific reports to determine the safety of various buildings, etc.

Discussion and clarification around use of sick time for Covid-related illness or care-giving took place, as did discussion around the disparity of safety for students or younger children versus the safety for adult teachers and staff. Dave will seek clarity from Dr. Tracey on the sick day issue.

Discussion of steward walk-throughs at John C. Daniels Prek-8 and possibly in other buildings led to a conversation around students’ masks etc and a lack of such for soap and other PPE.

Discussion occurred around the unusually high risk concerning enrichment teachers who teach upwards of 200 students each as well as the lack of supplies etc.

Discussion around the level of collaboration of the NHFT with the BOE and superintendent that is expected or required in order to be part of the solution together etc. 


5.  New Business

The union can and should engage in Courageous Conversations around racial justice and equity as much of the work in the district pd and throughout our community partners and other stakeholders continues to be around these important issues.


6.     Motion to Adjourn 5:15 pm