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School Board Notes 6/23/17

posted by Debbie Boisvert

With the end of the academic year approaching quickly, the Board at its June meeting began wrapping up some of our district-level concerns. The fiscal year 2016-2017 closes at the end of June and we received an update from Business Manager Amber Wheeler that it is looking like we will end the year with a surplus. As of now the surplus looks to be around $429,000, which would allow the Board to transfer funds to the Facilities Repair and Facility Paving trust funds, as instructed by the voters at this past March town meeting. This would close out the year with a roughly $364,000 surplus, the majority of which would be returned to the taxpayers.

The Board also took this opportunity to review our progress on the goals that we set in September. You can download them here. The Board observed the following:

  1. Personnel

    1. We hired a new principal (Chris Smith) and assistant principal (Brian Grieve) to begin in July upon Paul Yergeau’s retirement.

    2. The voters passed a new collective bargaining agreement with our paraprofessionals.

  2. Infrastructure

    1. Voters budgeted for an engineering study of DCS in 2017-2018; the Board accepted an RFP for a local company to begin work on this over the summer.

    2. Additional work is needed on updating our Technology Improvement Plan (TIP).

  3. Curriculum

    1. The Board is looking forward to hearing from the DCS PACE team about their recommendation on moving to Tier 1 or remaining at Tier 2, expected this summer or early fall.

    2. Results from the Board’s survey of parents and high-school students and updated data reports from Concord High School have opened discussions with DCS about how our students transition to 9th grade at CHS. Discussions will be continuing on this topic.

    3. DCS Library Media Specialist Ginna Schonwald presented her updated Library curriculum to the Board in June; we expect to revisit it at our next meeting.

  4. Communication

    1. DCS has held several parent forums this year, mostly around collecting community input on the ongoing work with competency-based education (CBE) and PACE.

    2. Board-community communication has grown this year, partly in the form of these regular updates. Hopefully you find them useful!

School Board Notes June 15th

posted Jun 17, 2017, 10:27 AM by Debbie Boisvert

Deerfield Community School has several faculty members retiring this year. The Board would like to thank Gloria James, Pat Rose, Gail Korth, and Patty Cameron for their years of service to our school and our community.

The Board would also like to recognize all of the administration, staff and students who have worked so hard to make DCS what it is over the years. You may have heard that DCS was named the 2017 K-8 School of Excellence by the New Hampshire Excellence in Education Awards Program ( Last weekend the school was honored at the EDies awards ceremony.

We are looking ahead to a busy summer at DCS. Perhaps first and foremost, Assistant Principal Chris Smith will take on his new responsibilities as principal at the beginning of July and Brian Grieve will return as assistant principal. Additionally, the RFP process for the school’s engineering study and the town’s demographic study is underway, and the SAU’s new Curriculum Coordinator is working with the school to identify and prioritize our greatest needs.

As we work through the summer, updates will be posted periodically on the school’s website ( ) as well as on The Forum ( See you in September!

School Board Meeting 5/31/17

posted May 30, 2017, 1:51 PM by Deb Boisvert   [ updated May 31, 2017, 11:50 AM by Debbie Boisvert ]

Due to late-breaking developments, tonight's meeting has been cancelled.




WEDNESDAY, MAY 31, 2017 ~ 5:30 P


1.      Call to Order – Mr. Deely, Chair

2.      Pledge of Allegiance – Mr. Deely

3.      Immediate Business

        A.    Public Comments

        B.     Impact Fees

4.       Public Comments

5.       Adjournment

 Next Scheduled MeetingJune 14, 2017 ~  Deerfield Community School*

*Elevator access to the meeting room is available upon request.

School Board Meeting May 3, 2017

posted May 8, 2017, 10:28 AM by general generaldcs

YouTube Video

School Board Notes 4/5/17

posted May 5, 2017, 9:45 AM by Debbie Boisvert   [ updated May 5, 2017, 9:51 AM ]

At the School Board’s April meeting we heard about how DCS collects data on our students’ academic progress and uses the information to monitor both student and school-wide growth and to make decisions about student supports and opportunities.

Reading specialist Kristen Davis and math specialist Heidi Cook began by describing the different assessment tools used to develop a picture of school-wide progress: aimsweb, which measures student fluency in both reading (i.e. decoding words) and math (i.e. math facts); STAR, which measures conceptual comprehension and application in both reading and math; and the Smarter Balanced Assessment, which provides information on how well students are reaching higher-level comprehension skills in math and literacy.

They went on to discuss some of the ways that DCS uses the results of these measurements to increase student learning. In each grade faculty get together in data meetings to review the range of assessment results and group students according to who would benefit from additional support in literacy or in numeracy, or who would benefit from enrichment studies, etc. Students in the elementary grades then meet in small intervention groups in WIN (What I Need) time to address these academic needs. Sixth grade has a comparable program, called Core ‘N’ More, which provides similar opportunities for support and enrichment. Additionally, student data is analyzed on a school-wide level and at grade levels to determine if changes in curriculum are needed. For example, the math committee is currently using school-wide data to address possible changes in the math materials to improve student learning.

Ms. Davis and Ms. Cook emphasized that student progress is never viewed through a single data point at DCS. Instead, multiple assessments and other measures are always used to develop a more complete picture of every student and to focus curricular supports and opportunities in order to maximize his or her academic growth.

New Co-Superintendent Chosen

posted Apr 26, 2017, 8:47 AM by Paul Yergeau   [ updated Apr 26, 2017, 3:58 PM by Debbie Boisvert ]


April 25, 2017

To: All Parents, Staff, Students and Community Members of SAU #53—Allenstown,

Chichester, Deerfield, Epsom and Pembroke

Re: The Appointment of David Ryan as SAU #53’s New Co-Superintendent of Schools

The SAU #53 School Board is pleased to announce the selection of its new Co-Superintendent of Schools for Allenstown, Chichester and Epsom, Mr. David Ryan. After an exhaustive search process resulting in final interviews of the two candidates on Thursday, April 20, 2017, the SAU #53 School Board voted to appoint Mr. David Ryan. The ratification of Mr. Ryan’s contract by the SAU #53 Executive School Board is scheduled for later this month.

Mr. Ryan has served for 17 years as a school administrator. While he is currently serving as Assistant Superintendent of the Manchester School District for Curriculum and Instruction, Mr. Ryan also has been a principal, assistant principal and a teacher. At the university level, Mr. Ryan has taught courses including School Organizational Leadership, School Law and Ethics and has supervised principal field interns.

Mr. Ryan has published in the areas of school-centered student communication, educational leadership and district leaders building a culture of innovation. He anticipates receiving his doctorate from Boston College in May 2018. He and his wife and 3 children reside in Hooksett.

Mr. Ryan will commence his responsibilities as Co-Superintendent of Schools in July. The position became available when Co-Superintendent Dr. Gail Paludi announced her retirement.

Jim Deely, Chair of the SAU #53 School Board stated: “On behalf of the SAU #53 School Board, I wish to thank the members of the Co-Superintendent Search Committee, chaired by Co-Superintendent Patty Sherman. Additionally, I thank the school staff, students and community members who took an active role in the vetting process throughout the search resulting in the appointment of Mr. David Ryan.

Mr. Jim Deely, Chair

SAU #53 School Board

Last day of school June 23

posted Apr 20, 2017, 9:57 AM by Debbie Boisvert

At the April 5, 2017 school board meeting, they voted to change Friday, May 26, 2017 to a full day of school for students and move the teacher workshop day to Monday, June 26th. As a result, the last day of school for students will be Friday, June 23rd. This will be an early release day ending at 12:30 pm.

April 4, 2017 School Board Agenda/video

posted Apr 3, 2017, 9:20 AM by Kandy Davitt   [ updated Apr 11, 2017, 10:59 AM by general generaldcs ]

YouTube Video

March School Board Meeting Notes-Nate Oxnard

posted Apr 3, 2017, 9:01 AM by Kandy Davitt

At our March meeting, Principal Yergeau and middle-school science teacher Ellen O’Donnell presented information about the Next Generation Science Standards, the set of science guidelines adopted by the NH State Board of Education in November. Mrs. O’Donnell’s argument about why these standards are an improvement over the last standards and why they work for DCS curriculum included the following points:

  • Specific standards at each grade level: With clearer guidelines about what topics should be taught in which grades, students who move between school districts will miss fewer key topics.
  • Readjustment of age-appropriateness: The new guidelines are more age-appropriate than the last set of standards.
  • Incorporate process skills: New standards expect students to practice the skills of scientific investigation, rather than just learning facts.
  • Incorporate engineering: The new expectations include more creativity, design, and evaluation, all key components of how science works.
  • More conceptual-based: The new guidelines prioritize the big ideas and connecting themes of science, which provides students with the ability to see “the big picture” rather than separate little pieces of science.

The Board expressed support for using the new standards at DCS, citing the way that engineering practices are included as well as the new emphasis on critical thinking and problem solving over memorizing. The updated DCS science curriculum is due to be presented to the School Board for approval in 2018-19; Mr. Yergeau reported that the curriculum work is on track for that date.

School Board Notes 3/16

posted Mar 21, 2017, 7:53 AM by Debbie Boisvert

The Board would like to thank everyone who braved the blizzard to get out and vote on Tuesday. In case you haven’t heard yet, here is a quick summary of the results:

Deerfield School District

Article 1: The proposed 2017-2018 budget passed.

Article 2: The new three-year contract with the para-educators passed.

Article 4: Adding $30,000 to the Facilities Repair Trust Fund passed.

Article 5: Replacing the DCS gym floor ($102,000) failed.

Article 6: Adding $35,000 to the Facility Paving Trust Fund passed.

Article 7: A request asking the District to form a standards-review board and to notify parents of their children’s participation in Smarter Balanced testing passed.

Article 8: A request asking the District to monitor its involvement in competency-based education and Performance Assessment Competency Education (PACE) passed.

Article 9: Rescinding the authority of the Municipal Budget Committee (MBC) to set the proposed budget failed.

Article 10: Delegating determination of the default budget to the MBC failed.

Election results: Jim Deely and Ken Heckman

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