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COMMONWEALTH OF MASSACHUSETTS
BOARD OF EDUCATION
REPORT NO. 3
TO THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT,
DISTRICT OF MASSACHUSETTS
BOSTON SCHOOL DESEGREGATION
PUBUCATION OF THIS DOCUMH^ APPROVED BY DaNEL D. CARTER, STATE PURCHASING ACEhfT «
Estimated Cost Per Copy $2.26
MASSACHUSETTS BOARD OF EDUCATION
Mr. James R. Grande, Hanover, Chairperson
Mrs. Mary C. Wright, Falmouth, [/ice Chairperson
Mr. Robert A. Farmer, Brookline
Mrs. Anne C. Fox, Needham
Rev. Paul V. Garrity, Maiden
Ms. Milca R. Gonzalez, Worcester
Mr. Howard A. Greis, Holden
Mr. Gregory G. Nadeau, Marblehead
Mrs. Loretta L. Roach, Boston
Mr. Joseph C. Savery, Lee
Ms. Mary Ellen Smith, Boston
Mrs. Dorothea A. Zanetti, Wilbraham
Dr. John H. Law/son, Commissioner of Education, Secretary^
Mr. John B. Duff, Chancellor, Board of Regents, Ex Officio
Report Coordinated by —
Franklin Banks, Special Assistant to the Commissioner on
Produced by the Bureau of Operational Support
Cecilia DiBella, Director
Susan Gardner, Publications Communications Coordinator
Susan M. Ridge, Typographist
The Massachusetts Department of Education insures equal employment/educational opportunities/affirmative action regardless of race,
color, creed, national origin or sex, in compliance with Title IX, or handicap, in compliance with section 504.
Overvi ew 1
I. Monitoring Reports
Student Assi gnments B
Special Desegregation Measures 29
Special Education 60
Bi 1 i ngual Educati on 69
Vocational and Occupational Education 78
Transport at i on 91
Safety and Security 102
Student Di sci pi i ne 110
Inst i tut i onal Pai ri ngs 118
Parent and Student Organizations 119
II. Dispute Resolution 128
III. Modifications 129
This is the Third Monitoring Report on Boston Public School
Desegregation, filed by the Massachusetts Board of Education and
Commissioner of Education under the Orders of Disengagement entered by
Federal District Court Judge W. Arthur Garrity, Jr. on December 23,
1982. The report covers Boston Public School operations from December
1983 through May 1984, and is based upon data collected by Massachusetts
Department of Education monitors during this period.
We feel that the present report represents an improvement over our
prior efforts, resulting from our growing familiarity with the Boston
system and the continued input of the parties and other interested
members of the public. The spirit of cooperation continues to deepen
between monitors and their counterparts in Boston, for which we express
appreciation to Superintendent Spillane and members of his staff.
THIRD MONITORING REPORT
As has previously been the case, this report is presented in two
volumes. Volume I is an "executive summary" of findings in each of the
twelve monitoring areas enumerated in the Orders of Disengagement. In
addition to a description of objectives, procedures, findings and
recommendations, all of which were contained in previous reports, each
section of Volume I contains a summary of previous findings to provide a
gauge of progress during the period of State Board monitoring. Volume I
will, as in the past, receive wide distribution.
Volume II includes all supporting documentation, much of which was
provided to monitors by members of the Boston School Department. Page
references to Volume II are again provided in the margins of Volume I.
While Volume II is again intended to receive more limited distribution,
additional copies have been printed to insure that they may be available
for every elementary, middle and high school building in Boston.
CRITICAL MONITORING ISSUES
In the overview of Report No. 2, the State Board identified six
desegregation-related issues of greatest concern, and noted that
"Efforts to address these issues in the next twelve months will provide
a basis on which to evaluate proposals for further procedural
modifications", which any party may propose after January 1, 1985.
These issues, summarized below, were addressed to varying degrees
by the Boston Public Schools. Since a large portion of those responses
that the State Board did receive arrived after staff monitors had
concluded their data gathering for this monitoring period, it was often
not possible to include analysis of the given response in the body of
the report and maintain our court submission schedule. We therefore
feel that it is appropriate to reiterate the six issues, and to
summarize the responses received to date, as an introduction to the more
specific findings. The six issues are listed below in no particular
order of priority:
(1) Impediments to program access for limited English proficient
students must be eliminated throughout the system. Similarly, a higher
level of support both prior to entrance and after enrollment in the
examination schools must be provided to minority students.
RESPONSE: A May 23, 1984 memorandum from Raffael DeGruttola to
Oliver Lancaster, provided to the State Board under Superintendent
Spillane's cover letter of May 31, lists four policy directives to be
implemented in the coming school year. These directives, which deal
with "access of bilingual students into mainstream classes," will be
monitored in the next report. Few improvements in problems cited in
Reports No. 1 and 2 have been found in the current monitoring period.
On the subject of examination school support. Minority Students
Retention Plans for Boston Latin School and Boston Latin Academy were
provided under the Superintendent's cover letter of May 29, 1984. The
majority of the critical improvements described in these Retention Plans
have yet to be implemented, and will be monitored for the next report.
(2) The number of administrators serving in an acting capacity
must be drastically reduced at both the school and district/central
office level. The Boston School Department, after consultation with the
Unions and the Citywide Parents Council (CPC) should implement a
schedule for making permanent appointments to those positions currently
filled with acting appointees.
RESPONSE: By letter dated May 2, 1984, Counsel for the Boston
School Committee requested that the State Board convene a meeting of the
parties for the purpose of negotiating a proposed modification to the
Court's administrative desegregation orders. The proposed modification,
which has been approved by the School Committee, contemplates both an
expedited procedure for reducing the backlog of acting appointments and
a modified procedure for filling future administrative vacancies. The
initial negotiation session was held on May 23, and was attended by all
parties of record and the CPC. A second negotiating session is
tentatively scheduled for late June.
(3) Racial/ethnic guidelines have yet to be met in several
schools, as well as most citywide vocational education programs. In
many instances, enrollments should be improved through vigorous
recruitment and program development efforts.
RESPONSE: An analysis of assignment issues by the Senior Officer
for Implementation was provided as Attachment II to the Superintendent's
May 31 letter . A discussion of both system-wide recruitment efforts
launched by the Department of Implementation, and follow-through in
specific schools appears in the section of this monitoring report
dealing with Special Desegregation Measures (see Vol. I, pp. and Vol.
II, pp. ). As was the case during the State Board's initial
monitoring period, no conclusion regarding the success of these efforts
can be drawn until enrollment data is gathered in the fall. Recruitment
efforts during 1983-84 have had a minimal impact upon deseyregati ve
applications, with the exception of English High School.
(4) The Unified Plan for Vocational and Occupational Education
should be subject to extensive review. Where appropriate, modifications
should be proposed in order to strengthen equal opportunity in
vocational training for all students.
RESPONSE: A summary of Boston's efforts in this area is contained
in Attachment III to the Superintendent's May 31 letter. While specific
progress has been made on a small scale, including the recent
appointment of a Development Officer at the Humphrey Center (which
monitors received notice of by letter dated June 1, 1984), most of the
initiatives described in Attachment III remain in the planning stage.
Representatives of the State Board and the Boston Public Schools met in
the previous monitoring period to initiate general discussions regarding
the Unified Vocational Plan, but no further meetings were held during
the current monitoring period.
(5) While declining enrollment continues to work its way through
the grade structure to the middle school and high school levels, the
Boston School Department has yet to seriously address the need for a
secondary school facilities plan grounded in long-term desegregation
considerations. This effort must be undertaken immediately, in
conjunction with city and state officials.
RESPONSE: Initial efforts toward the development of a secondary
school facilities plan were undertaken during the current monitoring
period. These efforts led to the filing of data by City of Boston and
School Department representatives with the State Board on May 3, 1984;
this data included projected grade organization, enrollments,
capacities, capital improvement needs, and schools in operation as
envisioned in the current draft of Boston's Long Range Plan. These
materials were incorporated in a Longe Range Facilities Plan arriving at
the Department on June 6, 1984. To a great extent, the validity of
these materials will be determined by the action ultimately taken on the
Long Range Plan currently under consideration in Boston.
(6) Safety and security continue to be major concerns for
students, parents and school staff. A comprehensive proyram to improve
safety and security throughout the system must be implemented.
RESPONSE: An April 13, 1984 letter from Deputy Superintendent
Peterkin, appearing as Attachment IV to Superintendent Spil lane's cover
letter of May 31, addresses issues regarding student discipline. On the
more general issues of safety and security, the Deputy Superintendent
provided a draft response to the Safe Schools Commission report in a
memorandum to the Superintendent dated March b, 1984; to date, this
response remains in draft form. Funds have has been budgeted for 2
school climate/school discipline teams and for the selective use of bus
monitors, although the specifics of how bus monitors will be deployed
have yet to be determined; see the section of this monitoring report
dealing with Safety and Security (Vol. I and II).
In summary, while we are encouraged that Boston has begun to
address the six issues of major concern, most of these efforts remain in
the planning stages and will require close monitoring during the next
reporting period. We have stressed, and will continue to stress, the
potential that Chapter 636 funding provides for addressing many of these
FURTHER ISSUES CITED IN EARLIER MONITORING REPORTS
In addition to the issues listed above, previous reports have
identified additional concerns. Those findings are summarized in the
chart below, with summary information regarding remedial action taken
during the present monitoring period. A more complete discussion of
these findings is contained in the various appropriate sections of this
Report #2 (February 1984)
1) Career Education requirements
are only partially being met. A
city-wide career education plan
is nearly completed, and many
middle schools have improved
offerings. However, many
compliance issues remain at
Report #3 (July 1984)
1) A city-wide career education
plan has been developed, and all
but two middle schools provide
programs in the 3 required
career clusters. Compliance
issues remain at some high
2) Support for limited English
proficient students remains
inadequate in many vocational
and occupational education
2) Support for limited English
proficient students remains
inadequate in many vocational
and occupational programs
despite the hiring of 3
additional bilingual aides.
3) Improvement has been noted in 3)
the appropriate placement of
students in bilingual special
needs programs serving their
4) Although English High has taken 4)
steps to improve safety and
school climate, this school
remains out of compliance for
Black and White enrollments and
requires continued attention.
5) Special Desegregation measures 5)
are being implemented at Burke
and Dorchester High Schools,
although delays in facilities
improvements have occurred at
Burke High School. Preliminary
indications suggest improved
compliance with Court orders at
Problems with adequate materials
for some bilingual special needs
programs persist. Mixing of
language groups was observed in
one school .
The reorganization plan for
English High promises an
improved safety climate and
improved compliance with racial
Recruitment efforts appear to
have resulted in increased
desegregati ve applications.
Facilities improvements at Burke
High are still delayed.
Compliance with enrollment goals
at Burke and Dorchester High are
projected within the permitted
6) On-site monitoring suggests that
Charlestown has begun to address
its high suspension problems,
although delays in the
compilation of statistics
inhibit confirmation until the
next Monitoring Report.
7) The percentage of other minority
teachers continues to increase
slowly; the concentration of
these teachers in bilingual
programs has been reduced.
Other minorities continue to be
headmasters and principals.
6) Although still the highest in
the city, Charlestown's
suspension rate has been reduced
to 40% of the 1982-1983 rate.
Suspensions citywide have
dropped significantly, possibly
indicating that greater efforts
are being made to employ
alternatives before relying on
7) The percentage of other minority
teachers has declined slightly ;
other minority administrators
are steadily increasing.
8) Significant progress has been
made to obtain and assign
appropriately certified special
education staff. Continued
difficulties remain in securing
needs educators. Significant
difficulties remain in securing
certified bilingual instructors
in specific linguistic
categories (Cambodian, Haitian,
8) The lack of certified
teachers and specialists remains
a major concern.
9) Certain schools continue to have
problems in assuring the safety
of students and staff.
Effective programs are sorely
needed to address the needs of
violent and disruptive students,
and to end their disruption of
the educational process.
y) In response to the Safe Schools
Commission Report , Boston has
a draft plan for
the expansion of
10) The level of participation in
School Parent Councils (SPC's)
is growing, as is cooperation
between the Boston School
administration and The Citywide
Parents Council .
11) Many schools designated for
special desegregation measures
by the Court remain in non
compliance with assignment
goals, due to a lack of central
office coordination and school-
10) The level of parent
in SPC's is low,
CPC. Problems of
cooperation between the CPC and
the Boston School administration
have been noted.
changes in the
11) The Department of Implementation
has undertaken a variety of
activities to encourage school-
level recruitment, and a few
schools have made significant
outreach efforts to recruit
students, especially those in
underenrol led racial
categories. The impact of these
efforts will be measured in the
Fall of 1984.
One additional significant finding was noted for the first time.
Considerable problems exist in the handling of transportation
complaints. Problems were also noted with frequent changes in route
assignments, increasing absenteeism and tardiness among drivers.
The period covered by the present monitoring report has been a
critical time of transition in the governance of the Boston Public
Schools as the Boston School Committee, which previously consisted of
five at-large members, was restructured to include four at-large and
nine district representatives. The State Board and Commissioner are
encouraged to see that the School Committee has moved through an initial
transition stage and has begun to address the critical issues identified
in the previous report. We are also pleased to note the continued
responsiveness of School Department staff, and wish to single out
Superintendent Spillane, Deputy Superintendent Peterkin and Senior
Officer Coakley for their cooperation in this regard. Our close working
relationship with the Department of Implementation again proved
essential in approving student assignments, which are processed during
this monitoring period, and in reviewing activities in the schools
designated for special desegregation measures.
James R. Grande John H. Lawson
Chairperson, Massachusetts Commissioner, Massachusetts
Board of Education Department of Education
Carry out the student assignment and transfer process, on all
levels, in such a manner that (a) the procedural requirements
established by the Court are met, and (b) the greatest possible
compliance is achieved in each school with the permitted
enrollment ranges for each racial/ethnic group.
To assure that all assignments for 1984-85 are made consistent
with the process approved by the Court, and to estimate the extent
of compliance which will be achieved with Court-ordered
1. ASSIGNMENT PROCESS
What is the process for providing information to parents
and students about attendance options for the subsequent
Monitors reviewed parent/student information and application
materials, and visited a district office to observe the
The process of giving an assignment for the 1984-85 school year to
each student attending or seeking to attend the Boston Public
Schools is complex. Under the student assignment orders, each
student (except those assigned to substantially-separate programs)
is offered a number of school assignment choices each year,
subject to explicit desegregation requirements. The assignment
process seeks to give each student in similar circumstances an
equal chance for desirable options. It must be protected from
illicit influence or manipulation. In addition, the process must
be carried out after promotion decisions are relatively firm yet
in time to permit school scheduling before the close of the
academic year. To the extent that parents are considering
educational alternatives, an early indication of an assignment may
help to persuade them to keep their children in the public
Volume II includes a selection of the instructions sent to
principals and headmasters, the application forms sent to parents,
and the assignment notifications. Briefly, the process for 1984-
85 was as follows:
personalized application forms were prepared for each
student, based upon his/her grade, residence, program, etc.;
these were distributed in each school on March 27th; parents
of students new to the system (including kindergarten)
applied at district offices during the same time period;
applications were due April 11th; proposed assignments were
developed by the Department of Implementation and provided to
the Board on May 7i:h for review and approval; assignment
notices were delivered to district offices on May 16th and
given to students in school that day or the next; notices
were not mailed because of bad experience with lost notices
in previous years, but arrangements were made for delivery in
cases of prolonged absence.
Monitors found that the process was carried out with no
significant problems. Target enrollments for examination schools
and advanced work/academically talented classes were reviewed and
approved, as were lists of potential invitees. Space matrices,
indicating projected capacity and location of each program, were
approved as a basis for assignments. The Board was provided with
proposed student assignments for regular programs, bilingual
programs, substantially-separate programs, and magnet vocational
programs in district high schools on May 7th; these were approved
after review and clarification of several issues. Extended Day
Kindergarten programs were approved after one modification to
bring a program into line with approved racial composition.
Assignments were issued the week of May 14th.
2. EXTENDED DAY KINDERGARTEN PROGRAMS
The Second Monitoring Report found that certain Extended
Day Kindergarten Programs had not achieved the
enrollment levels and proportions which had been
approved in February 1983. In five cases, more White
students had been admitted to programs located in
predominantly White neighborhoods than had been
approved, and concerns were also expressed about two
programs to which more Black or Other Minority students
had been admitted than had been approved. In other
instances, while approved levels had been exceeded, the
effect was to strengthen desegregation, and no objection
was raised. Do initial assignments to these seven
programs cited in the last Report correct these
problems? What contribution do such programs make to
Initial (May 1984) assignments for 1984-85 were approved by the
Boards' after correction of a slight over-assignment of White
students to one of the schools cited for that problem in the
Second Monitoring Report. Additional assignments to all programs
cited will be followed closely, as indicated by the memoranda of
April 28th and May 16th 1984 .
In general, extended day kindergarten programs appear to be one of
the most effective methods currently used by Boston to attract
White students into the public schools and to schools in
predominantly minority neighborhoods on a voluntary basis.
Preferences expressed in April 1984 for the 1984-85 school year
show that substantially more White students are applying for a
number of programs including programs in two of the most heavily-
minority schools in Boston (Blackstone, 92% minority; Hernandez,
89% minority), than can be assigned.
Extended day programs are also strongly popular among Black and
Other Minority parents. It is notable that the Perkins School in
South Boston, a new extended day program approved with some
hesitation in 1983, had no difficulty in enrolling ten Black and
eight Hispanic kindergarten students for 1983-84, and is already
over-subscribed for Black students for 1984-1985.
The next round of monitoring will include an assessment of the
extent to which White students in extended day programs remain in
the public schools for the elementary grades, and also whether
parents who are disappointed on their first choices for these
programs accept other kindergarten assignments and thus remain
within the public schools.
Present monitoring included several schools (Chittick, Mattahunt,
Higginson, Lee) for which extended day programs might be expected
to increase White enrollment in the elementary grades.
Unfortunately there seem to be several problems with taking full
advantage of their undoubted attractiveness including lack of
deliberate efforts to do so.
In short, initial review - which will be supported by statistical
analysis in the next Report - suggests that extended day
kindergarten is not realizing its full potential for
desegregation, despite abundant evidence of its appeal to
parents. It should be noted that extended day programs are an
important and effective element in the desegregation in Worcester
and Springfield, and that Lawrence and other desegregating systems
are planning to use them as well.
3. ELEMENTARY AND MIDDLE SCHOOLS
The assignments proposed each Spring for the following
year, and especially those at the elementary level, give
only an approximate indication of the likelihood that
schools will be in compliance with the permitted
enrollment ranges. In particular, hundreds of White
students who presently attend kindergarten are assigned
to first grade classes even though the experience of
many years indicates they will transfer to non-public
schools for the elementary grades. Taking this into
account, to what extent do the assignments proposed for
1984-85 promise to achieve desegregation compliance?
The monitor calculated the proportion of "shrinkage" between
assigned White enrollment in the Spring and actual White
enrollment in the Fall of 1983 in the elementary grades of each
school and then applied that proportion to the proposed
assignments for 1984-8b. Assignment monitoring visits were made
to the Tobin, Winthrop, Kennedy, Chittick, Mattahunt and Hennigan
Schools with A High Proportion of White Students
In Report No. 2 certain schools were identified (Volume II, page
24) as enrolling too high a proportion of White students. Review
of the projected enrollments for 1984-85, adjusted as described
above, made it clear that this would be a continuing problem.
The following schools - among others - could "afford" to encourage
White students to attend "special desegregation" or other schools
offering educational options:
Permitted and Projected White Proportion 1-5
School White Range White %
I Gardner 13-21% 29%
Since the problem of over- and under-enrol Iment of white students
has persisted since long before Report No. 1 it should become a
priority for the development (subject to approval) of new
voluntary measures, and for vigorous recruitment.
Magnet Elementary Schools
Report No. 2 noted that the Hennigan and Jackson Mann schools were
in persistent non-compliance because of large bilingual programs,
and urged the development of a long-term assignment strategy for
these magnet schools. The proposed assignments exacerbate this
problem, with the enrollment of the Hennigan going up to 45% Other
Minority (including 205 students in its Spanish Bilingual
program). A 36% increase of the Other Minority enrollment of the
Hennigan in two years should be the result of explicit program and
In this connection, the evident success of the Hernandez in
attracting more White student applications than can be
accommodated (so that, for example, 50% of the White kindergarten
applicants must be disappointed) indicates that strong support
exists for educational options which are truly bilingual. What
has worked for the Hernandez might well work for the Hennigan or
(with modification of the Plan) for the Kennedy or other schools
in predominantly-Hispanic neighborhoods.
Report No. 2 noted concerns about the educational impact of the
very high proportion of Hispanic students (68%, with 9% White) at
the Hernandez. The projected first grade assignments begin to
correct this situation; Boston should follow through on this
corrective action in making additional assignments.
Projected enrollments for magnet elementary (grades 1-5) and
middle schools compare as follows with city-wide projected
enrollments (exclusive of exam schools) for those grades:
(Note that the elementary projection for White enrollment in all
schools is undoubtedly too high, as a result of the "shrinkage" of
kindergarten enrollment discussed above.)
These projections indicate that Black students will be enrolled in
magnet elementary and middle schools at a rate at least
proportionate to that for White students, and the Other Minority
students will be "over-represented" in magnet elementary schools
as a result of the large bilingual programs at the Hennigan,
Hernandez, and Jackson-Mann schools. As pointed out Reports No. 1
and No. 2 magnet schools in Boston seem to be equitable in their
As noted in Report No. 2 (Volume II, page 14), the problem of
enrollment compliance is particularly difficult in middle schools
because of the large number of White students who, though they
leave certain schools for the exam schools, are counted in
determining the compliance standard. Most middle schools are
clearly more desegregated at present than they were in 1973, and a
substantial number of schools can project full compliance for next
The chart which follows, from the 1983 Annual Desegregation Report
of the Bureau of Equal Educational Opportunity, compares the
enrollment of some middle schools in 1970 with their Fall 1983
This improvement, resulting directly from Court-ordered
desegregation, has taken place even as the enrollment of the
school system overall has gone from 67.5% White (including some
Hispanics) in 1970 to 28% White in 1983.
Within each district the distribution of students of each
racial/ethnic group is roughly even, and it is difficult to see
how more compliance could be achieved without (a) persuading more
White students to attend public middle schools, or (b) persuading
more District VIII students to attend District IX middle
schools. Student preferences for 1984-85 show that only four
White students from District VIII gave a magnet middle school as
first choice (two for sixth grade, two for eighth grade), while
257 expressed a first preference for the Barnes or Cheverus! As a
result, 43% of the White seventh and eighth graders attend either
the Latin schools or schools in East Boston.
Do the May 1984 high school assignments for 1984-85 promise to
result in greater desegregation compliance?
Preferences expressed by eighth grade students for ninth grade
assignments were reviewed for all racial/ethnic groups, and
compared with preferences expressed last year, as reported in
Report No. 1. Proposed 1984-85 high school assignments were
reviewed in relation to (a) desegregation objectives, (b) student
preferences, and (c) the relation between 1983-84 assignments and
actual 1984-85 enrollment. Special attention was given to those
schools for which concerns were expressed in Reports No. 1 and No.
2. Where necessary, clarifications were obtained from the
Department of Implementation. In addition, assignment monitoring
visits were made to Burke, Dorchester, South Boston, Jamaica
Plain, East Boston, and English High Schools.
District High Schools - Previous Conclusions
Report No. 1 (July 1983) noted that all district high schools were
in compliance with respect to projected Fall 1983 Black
enrollment, with the possibility that Brighton High would be
slightly over the permitted range. Jamaica Plain and Burke High
Schools were projected to fall below the Court-mandated White
Other Minority (Hispanic, Asian, American Indian) enrollment was
held to a more flexible standard, since the presence of bilingual
programs in certain schools has the effect - recognized by the
Court - of inflating Other Minority enrollment in those schools
while deflating it in others. On the other hand, a review of the
location and size of Spanish bilingual programs at the high school
level found that there were too many such programs to achieve, in
each one, the optimal enrollment level of at least 100 students.
In an analysis of preferences expressed by students in the eighth
grade in 1982-83 for a high school assignment for 1983-84, the
Report found that, contrary to concerns expressed by Plaintiffs,
few students who expressed a first preference for a district
school were denied it.
A second conclusion was that certain district high schools were
particularly unappealing to students of all racial groups. Burke
and Dorchester were least appealing, followed closely by Hyde
Park, then by Charlestown, Jamaica Plain, and Brighton. Only West
Roxbury and South Boston were relatively appealing to all
groups. Report No. 1 concluded that special efforts should be
made by the staff of Burke, Dorchester and Jamaica Plain High
Schools to encourage those White students receiving assignments to
attend in September.
Report No. 2 (February 1984) reviewed November 1983 enrollments
and noted that four district high schools - the predicted Burke
and Jamaica Plain but also Brighton and South Boston - were below
the permitted range for White students.
District High Schools - Proposed Assignments in 1984
Review of ninth grade preferences for 1984-85 found some
encouraging trends. White eighth graders expressed fewer first
preferences for district high schools located in White
neighborhoods, and more for the city-wide Boston High (work-
study), English High, and Madison Park High:
There was a slight (from 7 to 11) increase in first preferences by
White students for Jamaica Plain High School, and an increase from
5 to 9 in the number of White first preferences for the magnet
vocational programs at Dorchester High.
Based upon the number of students assigned for 1984-85, all
district high schools should be in compliance with the permitted
ranges for Black and White enrollment, with Dorchester slightly
and South Boston substantially high in Other Minority enrollment -
the result of bilingual programs. Whether actual enrollments in
November remain in compliance will depend, in large measure, upon
efforts to reach out to newly-assigned students and persuade them
There has been an increase from 1983 in the number of students of
each racial group assigned to a district high school who gave
another school as first preference.
The largest number of such assignments of Black students in 1983
and again in 1984 is to Hyde Park, with substantial numbers also
to Burke and Dorchester, to West Roxbury, and to Charlestown in
The largest number of such assignments of White students has
consistently been to Burke, Dorchester, and Jamaica Plain.
Brighton received the largest number of such assignments of Other
Minority students both years, with Charlestown second.
West Roxbury is clearly the most popular among Black students, and
East Boston, South Boston and West Roxbury among White students.
Jamaica Plain is well ahead in first preferences among Other
City-wide High Schools - Previous Conclusions
Report No. 1, reviewing proposed 1983-1984 assignments, found that
several city-wide high schools - English, Madison Park, Copley
Square - had slightly higher proportions of Black students and
lower proportions of White students than permitted by the Court.
Special concern was expressed about Madison Park and English High
Schools; they deserved "priority attention ... to assure that
they are safe environments in which a first-rate program is
available" (Volume II, page 107).
The analysis of preferences found that the new "International
Program" at Copley Square High School was extremely popular with
all racial/ethnic groups, with far more students applying for
ninth grade than could be accommodated. Regret was expressed that
a similar effort in program development had not occurred at a
larger school, such as English High School, which would have been
able to satisfy more of the applicants.
Report No. 1 concluded that most students who expressed preference
for high school received their first preference, and that
desegregation was thus accomplished through a combination of
voluntary assignments and the assignment of students who failed to
indicate a preference by returning an application.
Report No. 2 reviewed the actual 1983-1984 enrollments, and found
that English and Madison Park both enrolled substantially more
Black students than had been projected, and that English was out
of compliance with respect to White enrollment.
City-wide High Schools - Proposed Assignments for 1984-8b
Boston High received a very large increase in first preferences
from Black students (from 30 to 155) and Other Minority students
(from 15 to 71). The implications of this "vote" for job-oriented
secondary education should be taken into account in secondary
planning in Boston. Boston High's share of all first preferences
for ninth grade jumped from 2% of each group in 1983 to 9% of
Black, 7% of White, and 8% of Other Minority students in 1984.
English High also received many more first preferences from Black
(up from 116 to 207) and Other Minority (from 30 to 79)
students. This increase seems to reflect efforts made to improve
school climate and educational programs. On the other hand, it
will remain necesssary to assign 36 White and 15 Other Minority
students to English who did not give it as their first
preference. English High's share of first preferences jumped from
7% to 12% of Black, from 2% to 5% of White, and from 4% to 9% of
Other Minority students.
Madison Park's share of first preferences for ninth grade dropped
from 20% to 15% of Black students and from 13% to 8% of Other
Minority students, but increased from 1% to 2% of White students.
Copley Square High's International Program, so popular last year,
is substantially less so this year. This suggests that the
reported difficulties experienced this year in delivering on the
promises made for the International Program have had their effect
- Boston students and their parents are shrewd "consumers" and
capable of making well-informed choices among educational options.
Copley Square's share of first preferences for ninth grade dropped
from 10% to 7% of Black, from 8% to 6% of White, and from 9% to 7%
of Other Minority students in 1984.
The number of first preferences for the Umana has also fall off
from 9% to 5% of Black, from 7% to 4% of White, and from 5% to 4%
of Other Minority students in 1984.
Assignments for 1984-85 indicate that all city-wide high schools
should be in compliance with the permitted ranges, with English
slightly over in Other Minority enrollment. Much will depend upon
efforts to persuade all students to attend their assigned schools,
and upon how supplemental assignments and transfer requests are
handled over the next several months.
5. OCCUPATIONAL RESOURCE CENTER ASSIGNMENTS
Are the assignments for 1984-85 consistent with the provisions and
goals of the Unified Plan of September 1975? Based upon the
ratio of enrollment to assignments last year, is improved
compliance projected in 1984-85? Is there evidence that
improvements have been made in recruitment and counselling for
Occupational Resource Center programs?
The Monitor met with leadership of the Department of
Implementation and the Humphrey Occupational Resource Center to
review assignment requirements and recruitment activities. The
Monitor also reviewed an "action plan" for recruitment, and the
proposed 1984-85 Occupational Resource Center assignments,
received May 25th. 1984-85 assignments were compared with 1983-84
assignments, and 1984-85 enrollment projections were made, based
upon the ratio of enrollment to assignments in 1983-84. Student
preferences for ORG assignments for 1984-85 were compared with
last year's preferences.
Assignments to the HHHORC are governed by the "admissions
criteria" stated in the Unified Plan of September 1975. The most
important of these criteria include: (a) students may only be
assigned voluntarily, (b) assignments to city-wide occupational
programs are governed by a modified version of the criteria for
city-wide magnet schools, (c) insufficient applications from any
racial/ethnic group for particular programs will result in
underenrol Iment of that program, and (d) assignment of male and
female students to programs in which one sex has represented less
than 35% of enrollment is to be made on a 1:1 basis until all
applicants of one group have been assigned.
As of June 1984, 21 of the 35 HHHORC programs are underassigned
for 1984-85. In almost all cases this reflects insufficient
applications rather than enrollment limitation for desegregation
purposes. As occurred last year, the Board has approved initial
HHHORC assignments, while urging continuing recruitment efforts to
permit assignment of additonal students by September. In some
cases such additional assignments may bring programs into
compliance with the Court-ordered standards.
On the basis of students assigned for 1984-85, 13 of 35 programs
are in compliance for Black enrollment, 15 for White enrollment,
and 4 for Other Minority enrollment. At this point last year,
projected compliance for 1983-84 was 12 for Black enrollment, 7
for White enrollment, and 5 for Other Minority enrollment. Some
progress is evident, though a substantial majority of the programs
are out of compliance in each racial/ethnic category.
Black assigned enrollment is below the Court-established range in
ten programs, including data processing, electronics and
photographic technology, and plumbing, and above the range in
White assigned enrollment is below the Court-established range in
fourteen programs, including machine (also available at Hyde Park
High School), advanced office (also available at East Boston High
School), food service, health aide, and electronics technology,
and above the range in six programs.
Other Minority assigned enrollment is below the range (a narrow
range for this group) in thirteen programs, including plumbing and
retailing, and above the range in eighteen.
Ten programs have an assigned enrollment for 1984-85 above 65%
female, and fourteen an assigned enrollment above 65% male. This
compares with ten above 65% female and sixteen above 65% male
assigned for 1983-84.
In brief, there is slight improvement in assignments with respect
to sex as with respect to racial/ethnic group.
Overall, the total number of students assigned to the HHHORC for
1984-85 is lower than the number assigned last May for 1983-84.
ASSIGNED 1983-84 1984-85
Black 1344 1233 -8%
White 432 429 -1%
other Minority 493 465 -6%
Total 2305 2149 -7%
Previous monitoring reports stressed that the problems of under-
enrollment and failure of many programs to comply with Court-
ordered desegregation standards would only be solved through
effective recruitment, counselling, and career exploratory
programs, as mandated in the Court-ordered Unified Plan.
Although there has been discussion and some encouraging first
steps toward improvement of recruitment, including the May 22,
1984 appointment of a development officer for the HHHORC, there
are no signs of actual improvement.
The impact of recruitment can best be measured, not by actual
assignments (which are governed by desegregation and capacity
limitations), but by the number of students expressing a first
preference for a city-wide occupational program. There was a
substantial decline in first preferences for HHHORC programs for
1984-85 compared with last year, from 2256 to 1978. White first
preferences declined by nearly 17%, Black first preferences by
over 12%, and Other Minority first preferences by 10%, for an
overall decrease of 12.3% By comparison, projected enrollment in
grades 10-12 in Boston declined by only 4.3%. HHHORC programs
are becoming less rather than more popular with Boston students,
despite the extensive opportunities which they offer for
The moderate improvement in assigned enrollments for 1984-85 is
the result of the assignment process alone, and not of recruitment
efforts. Student first preferences are even more
disproportionate this year than last, since White applications
declined more rapidly than did Black applications. It does not
appear that the recruitment measures which have been discussed
since Spring 1983 have contributed to desegregation compliance.
Discussion with several headmasters and with officials of the
Department of Implementation and the HHHORC suggests that a major
recruitment problem is created by luke-warm encouragement - and
even discouragement - in the sending schools. The next
Monitoring Report will include a school -by-school analysis of the
rate of participation in HHHORC programs, and an in-depth analysis
of the pattern of applications for these programs.
What are the requirements and process for student transfers? What
is the impact of such transfers on desegregation? Is there any
indication that disciplinary transfers have a destabilizing effect
on high schools?
Transfer guidelines were reviewed. The Department of
Implementation provided a print-out of transfers in and out of
each school between July 1, 1983 and March 23, 1984, and this was
reviewed for patterns which might indicate either unequal
treatment or negative impact upon desegregation.
There are five categories of student transfers identified in the
Student Assignment Procedures:
a. change of address
c. desegregati ve
Each category requires specific procedures and
principals/headmasters must explain the policies and procedures
required for each type. Volume II includes an extended extract
from these policies and procedures.
Review of transfers granted between July 1, 1983 and March 23,
1984 did not find apparent patterns of abuse. White students made
greater use of "medical" and "desegregati ve" transfers than did
other groups, which may reflect greater sophistication about how
to obtain the desired school assignment, but the numbers involved
are small, and the process for review by the Department of
Implementation should restrict abuse. Data on the transfers
approved, by type and by race, is provided in the Appendix. There
are two additional types of transfers which have caused concern in
previous monitoring. Transfers for disciplinary reasons require
certification, by the Community District Superintendent, that all
requirements of the Code of Discipline have been met, and approval
by the Community District Superintendent of the receiving school
if a cross-district transfer is involved. Such transfers are
used, monitors have been told, to remove students from situations
in which they may be a danger to other students or to the
Analysis of transfers which are reported as "behavioral" does not
suggest an obvious pattern of "loading" certain schools with
troubled students, because of the small numbers involved. On the
other hand, additional transfers which are really behavioral or
disciplinary in origin may be treated as though initiated by
student request, and thus as "programmatic." No high school
received more than three behavioral transfers:
Jamaica Plain, Charlestown 3
Hyde Park, Burke, Madison Park 2
Brighton, Dorchester, Boston
High, Copley Suare, English,
West Roxbury, South Boston,
The Examination Schools, because of their special admission
requirements, did not receive such transfers. The great majority
of these transfers are of Black students and are into schools
which are predominantly minority; to the extent that these
transfers are governed by the Code of Discipline, safeguards exist
against unequal treatment. Nevertheless, the pattern of
behavioral transfers will be reviewed in the next monitoring
The other category of transfers about which concerns have been
expressed during school-level monitoring is those between
Instructional levels. The issue of "mid-term promotions" and
their impact upon school stability was noted in the Report No. 1
in relation to Burke High, a special desegregation school. The
Community District Superintendent subsequently agreed to limit
this practice, as reported in the Second Monitoring Report No.
2. A letter included in Appendix provides recent evidence of a
new vigilance with respect to such transfers.
The process for student transfers is as follows: a parent or
guardian, or student eighteen or older, may request a transfer at
any school office or community district office. Boston staff
assist in completing the application, in whatever language is
appropriate. In the case of an address change or requested
medical transfer, additional information is required. An
Assignment/Tranfer Specialist within the Department of
Implementation determines whether the transfer meets the
requirements spelled out in the "Procedural Manual". If
approved, the transfer information is provided to the sending and
receiving schools as well as to the applicant.
The Department of Implementation is to be commended for its
efforts to assign students to every school, and especially to high
schools, in such a way that each school will be in compliance with
the permitted ranges for all racial groups. Close observation of
the process for two years had demonstrated the integrity of the
assignments, and the extreme complexity and sensitivity of the
task. If a number of schools will not be completely desegregated
next Fall, it will not be because of faults in the assignment
process as such.
Efforts to strenghten the educational program and to improve the
school climate at English High, Jamaica Plain High, Dorcester
High, and Burke High also deserve commendation, as they have
already produced an increase in student first preferences.
1. The preferences expressed by parents and students at all
grade levels, and especially at the eighth/ninth grade
transition, should be given careful consideration in
developing a Long Range Secondary Plan and in developing or
modifying secondary school options.
2. Efforts are needed at Madison Park and several district high
schools, parallel to the efforts commended above, to increase
the attractiveness of the educational program and school
climate. The determination to gain additional applications
can be a powerful impetus for change and cooperation among
staff and with parents and students.
3. The promises made for Copley Square a year ago and for
English High this year must be delivered on, or it will
become even more difficult to retain White students in the
non-examination magnet high schools.
4. The continuing existence of elementary schools whose White
enrollment exceeds the permitted ranges demonstrates that a
pool of White students remains available for recruitment to
appropriate schools, on the basis of attractive educational
options. The in-depth analysis of certain attendance zones
in the section of this Report on "special desegregation
schools" documents how many White students either do not
attend public schools or do not attend their district school,
and are similarly available for persuasion to accept a
desegregati ve assignment. Such voluntary measures would in
some cases require modification of the present Student
Assignment Plan, though the provision for programmatic and
desegregati ve transfers under existing orders has not
apparently been used to this end. A number of schools are
identified which might send or receive White students (and,
conversely, receive or send minority students) under such
special desegregation efforts.
5. Several magnet elementary schools - the Hennigan and the
Hernandez - are singled out for continuing concern because of
extremely high Hispanic enrollment. On the other hand, the
success of the Hernandez in attracting applications from
White parents suggests the possibility of increasing the
number of elementary options with a two-way bilingual
6. Further recruitment for Extended Day Kindergarten Programs,
and strict attention to assignment limitations in certain
cases, will be necessary to assure that all programs are in
compliance in the Fall. The demonstrated popularity of such
programs with all racial/ethnic groups, in other
Massachusetts cities as well as in Boston, makes it important
to find ways to increase their positive impact upon
desegregation compliance in the elementary grades.
7. Projected enrollment in programs at the Humphrey
Occupational Resource Center continues seriously out of
compliance in many cases, despite some improvement, and there
is a disturbing decline in the number of applications from
students of all racial/ethnic groups. Efforts to recruit
students through active outreach, career education and
counselling, and encouragement at the sending high schools
should be a major priority.
The desegregation of faculty and administrative staff shall be
implemented according to the standards contained in the orders of
July 31, 1974; January 28, 1975; the amended Order of August 30,
1975; the Order of February 24, 1976, the Special Order of July 7,
1977; the Further Order of July 5, 1978; the Modification of
January 27, 1981; the Conditional Order of June 2, 1981; and the
Bench Order of July 9, 1981.
The following documents from the School Department were
Report to the United States District Court on Administrators of
January 15, 1984; Report on the number of White, Black, and Other
Minority Permanent and Acting Administrators of March 19, 1984;
Status Report - Affirmative Action (Memorandum of Superintendent
Spill ane to the School Committee, March 9, 1984); two memoranda
from Dr. Spillane to the School Committee on Acting Positions, one
dated March 27, 1984; one dated April 23, 1984, and adopted by the
School Committee; and several additional letters and memoranda,
all included in volume II of this report. Monitors also
interviewed appropriate central office personnel.
1. To determine whether the 20% Black requirement for teaching
and administrative positions continues to be met.
PERCENTAGE OF BLACK TEACHERS AND ADMINISTRATORS
REPORT #1 REPORT #2 CURRENT
(6/83) (2/84) FINDINGS
CATEGORY I 21.14
Minority Teachers and Administrators, March 19, 1984).
acting administrative appointments being used to circumvent
requirement for 20% black administrators (both categories)?
Problems with acting appointments will be discussed below, but it
is clear from the statistics already reported that appointments to
an "acting" rather than "permanent" status are not being used to
evade the 20% requirement.
To determine whether the required procedure
administrative ratings has been followed in all cases.
How many ratings have been conducted during this monitoring
Report #1: (not monitored)
Report #2: Seven, two completed ratings
Of the seven ratings being conducted in the last reporting period,
two more were completed. Since that time, four more have been
scheduled, but none completed. For all practical purposes, the
promotional rating system described in the court's orders is not
being used by the Boston Public Schools. Almost all
administrative appointments are on an acting basis; there are now
approximately 350 acting administrators in Boston, out of a total
administrative staff of 710.
.To assess the affirmative action efforts of the School
Department to reach the goal of 25% Black teachers and
As reported previously, the School Department is filling vacancies
from the recall list, as specificially allowed by the court.
Nonetheless, as reported above, the percentage of Black teachers
and administrators is slowly increasing.
4. To assess the best efforts of the School Department to
increase the percentage of other minority teachers and
Have the percentages of other minority teachers and
Percentage of Other Minority Teachers and Administrators
The percentage of other minority teachers on March 15, 1984, was
8.42%, a slight increase over a year ago, but a slight decrease
since the last monitoring period. The percentage of other
minority administrators has increased significantly, however, to
3.25% in Category I and 5.72% in Category II.
What affirmative action and recruitment activities have taken
Volume II contains a copy of a report of the recruitment
specialist recently hired by Boston's Department of Personnel and
Labor Relations. While there are as yet no substantial results of
these recruitment efforts, they appear to the monitors to be
positive and appropriate steps towards an effective minority
On May 2nd, 1984, Counsel for the School Committee informed the
Department of Education that the School Committee had approved a request
for modification of the orders requiring a promotional rating system.
Such a modification had been recommended in Report No. 1. The specific
terms of any modification will have to be determined through the court-
established procedure, but the request for such a modification is a very
positive step. At present, the School Department's refusal to use the
promotional rating procedure, and to make acting appointments instead,
has in effect excluded parents and teachers from the process by which
administrators in Boston are chosen. (172)
SPECIAL DESEGREGATION MEASURES
Special desegregation measures at specific schools shall be
implemented according to the orders of May 3, 1976, pages 20 to
25; May 6, 1977, pages 25 and 43 - 44; March 21, 1978, page 6; and
the Bench Order of April 20, 1982 regarding the Hispanic Bilingual
Program, Charletown High School.
To determine whether all measures required by the Court continue
to be carried out.
To determine the effectiveness of all continuing special
To determine compliance with all terms of voluntary measures with
respect to special desegregation which have not been formalized as
court orders, and with all terms of special desegregation measures
arrived at pursuant to the process of dispute resolution.
It is a commonplace of civil rights implementation that strict
compliance with legal requirements should be matched with active
efforts to achieve the purpose of those requirements.
In other desegregating school systems in Massachusetts "active
efforts" have focused on program development in individual schools
and on outreach to prospective parents and students, including
those who might otherwise select a non-public school.
The First Report expressed concern about school -level efforts to
reach the parents of students newly-assigned to "special
desegregation" schools, and thus to increase the likelihood that
White enrollment would meet Court-established goals. The failure
of Madison Park and English High Schools to attract students of
all racial/ethnic groups also required priority attention.
The basic conclusions were that "the assignment process was
carried out appropriately, but the assignment outcomes are not
satisfactory in all cases," leading to a need to "strengthen the
attractiveness" of many schools and to "follow up on assignments
by energetic outreach."
Have new program development and recruitment efforts been
implemented to improve compliance with desegregation goals? Is
there evidence that they have been effective?
Discussion with Senior Officer for desegregation; review of
recruitment materials developed by Department of Implementation.
In a review of White enrollment trends. Report No. 2 pointed out
that many schools lost a high proportion of the White students
assigned to them for first grade. Twenty schools were identified
which showed "promise of coming into compliance without mandatory
reassignments," through "program development, communication with
parents, and measures to create a safe and positive learning
environment in each school."
The Department of Implementation undertook a variety of activities
this Spring to encourage school-level recruitment. These
a. printing mailing labels for students who live in the
geocodes for certain schools but do not attend the
Boston Public Schools, so that these schools could send
direct mailings to prospective students; and
b. reminding administrators of the concern, expressed in
the Board's Reports to the Court, about recruitment to
schools which are not in compliance with Court
Efforts at the school level range from sending a general letter of
information, perhaps including an open house or an invitation to
visit the school, to sophisticated efforts to communicate an
educational commitment and direction, in the case of the Shaw
elementary and Dorchester and English High Schools.
Successful recruitment efforts obviously rely upon having
something to communicate about, and must reflect a year round
effort to be responsive to educational needs and to parent
concerns. Again and again monitors were told that "word of mouth"
was the best recruiter, that satisfied parents could best convince
other parents. In this sense, "recruitment" must begin the first
week of school, and include many outreach and communication
efforts which show no immediate results.
2. SPECIAL DESEGREGATION RECRUITMENT
Report No. 2 found little evidence of proyram development or
recruitment designed to increase with desegregation requirements
in the "special desegregation" schools, with the exception of the
Shaw Elementary School and Dorchester High School. What efforts
were made between December 1983 and May 1984 to increase the
likelihood that these schools will be in compliance?
Review of recruitment materials provided by special desegregation
schools; review of student preferences and projected enrollment
for 1984-85. Monitoring visits to schools.
In each special desegregation school the history of non-compliance
has involved enrollment of too few White and/or too many Black
students. Compliance could thus be achieved by assigning fewer
Black students, as was initially proposed with Burke High School
last Spring. While this may be appropriate in some instances,
there are obvious problems: to the extent that the "special
desegregation" school can offer a sound or superior educational
opportunity, a limitation of Black enrollment frustrates a major
purpose of desegregation, to improve opportunities for minority
students. In addition, the students who are not assigned must be
assigned to another school, and this may worsen compliance in the
receiving school. Finally, the assignment provisions of the Plan
limit the schools to which a particular student - especially at
the elementary and middle school levels - may be assigned.
Less objectionable is the approach of encouraging Black students
(or potential students) to express a preference for a District IX
city-wide school or program, and to give preference to such
applications in the assignment process. The fact that far fewer
Black students express a first preference for Burke or Dorchester
High School, for example, than must be assigned to those schools
has made it possible to limit the assignment of Black students
without in any sense denying them a desired opportunity for the
sake of desegregation compliance. Similarly, only 38 Black
students have been assigned to the ninth grade of Jamaica Plain
High for 1984-85, contrasted with 124 assigned for the current
year, but in fact only 20 Black students gave Jamaica Plain as
their first choice, so desegregation progress can be made without
denying admission to this school; in fact, the number of
involuntary assignments to the school will be reduced
This approach has not been used with Burke and Dorchester this
year; the number of Black students assigned originally to these
schools has increased from 60 at this time last year for 1983-84
to 230 for 1984-85. This is actually lower than the 285 Black
ninth graders enrolled in the two shools as of November 1983. It
appears that a realistic number of students has been assigned
initially, and a number which will make it at least possible for
both schools to be in compliance in the Fall. Whether compliance
is in fact achieved depends, in part, on the number of late
assignments and promotions of Black students; a substantial growth
in Black enrollment could place either school out of compliance.
The other approach to desegregation compliance is to increase the
number of White students attending each "special desegregation"
school. Such students could (a) be persuaded to attend the school
in preference to a non-public school, or (b) be required to attend
the school instead of a preferred magnet school. Needless to say,
neither approach is fool-proof. In some neighborhoods and some
families attendance in a particular non-public (usually parochial)
school is a matter of both tradition and conviction, predating
desegregation. Public educators must accept such choices, even
while making a better effort to present the advantages which a
particular public school can offer.
On the other hand, interviews identified a number of White parents
who had no particular commitment to a non-public school, but had
not been convinced that the public schools could offer an
equivalent educational environment. Few had actually visited a
Boston public school or received information about the schools.
It is these parents who can and should be reached, not only to
increase desegregation compliance but also to increase the long-
term support for the public schools.
In this respect, the effort of the Department of Implementation,
this Spring, to encourage contact by school leadership with
parents of non-public school students was an important step and
one deserving commendation . Sets of address labels were printed
and sent to each school which requested them, and some which did
not. Examples of the letters which were sent out by special
desegregation schools are included in Volume II. Though of
obviously uneven quality and appeal, these letters represent a
start to "telling the story" of what the Boston Public Schools can
offer at the level of the individual school, which is of course
the primary concern of parents. The other approach to increasing
White enrollment is to deny magnet school assignments to White
students who would otherwise attend their geocoded "special
desegregation" school. While this approach has an obvious logic -
why allow magnet schools, many of which have an excess of White
applicants, to complicate the problem of desegregation compliance
in community district schools? - it is not without difficulties.
Will the White students denied a place in a magnet school actually
attend the district school, or will they simply leave the public
schools altogether? Unless the district schools can be seen as a
desirable choice , they may benefit little from a restriction of
It is clearly important to find ways to increase White enrollment
in special desegregation schools which minimize the difficulties
which have just been identified. Probably the best approach is to
seek to invest each special desegregation school with the aura of
distinctiveness and high morale which make magnet schools an
attractive alternative to so many parents. Extensive monitoring
experience with magnet and non-magnet schools in Boston and other
cities has demonstrated that the essential differences are in the
perception which school staff and parents at magnet schools have
that they are engaged in a dynamic process of mutual influence and
school improvement. The fact that the magnet school is chosen is
a key element in this perception and the high morale which flow
from it. Every school, in Boston, is a "school of choice" in the
sense that parents and students have the opportunity to choose it
or choose against it. The challenge for special desegregation
schools, within the constraints of the present geocoding, is to
begin to operate like schools which have something distinctive and
important to offer.
It is clear that some are doing so. The impact of program
development and recruitment measures undertaken since Report No. 2
will not be measurable until the Fall, but the monitors were
impressed with efforts to strengthen Dorchester and Burke High
Schools, with attention both to new programs and also to the
educational basics and school climate.
What is still lacking, however, is a coordinated approach which
uses information on parent and student preferences to develop
attractive programs and then to present them convincingly to those
who are not firmly committed to non-public education. Such a
strategy, already in place in several Massachusetts cities,
provides information to school staff on the most fruitful forms of
program development, supports program and staff development, and
coordinates public information and recruitment. While a
supplement and stimulus rather than substitute for school-level
initiatives, such a developmental approach can make the difference
between compliance with the letter of desegregation orders and
successful desegregation which strengthens educational
opportunities for all students.
3. IMPACT OF NON-PUBLIC AND MAGNET ENROLLMENT
Report No. 2 noted the difficulties caused for desegregation by
the large number of White students attending non-public schools,
especially after kindergarten. Note has also been made of the
impact of attendance in magnet schools, which may have a
disproportionate impact upon certain district schools, including
"special desegregation" schools. To what extent are special
desegregtion schools competing with non-public and with city-wide
The number of Black, White and Other Minority students residing in
the geocodes assigned to each elementary special desegregation
school and attending kindergarten and grades 1-4 in Boston Public
Schools and in other schools (parochial, other non-public, and
suburban public) was compared with the number attending the
special desegregation school. The proportions attending the
latter, attending other Boston public schools (presumably magnet),
and attending non-(Boston)-Public Schools were calculated.
A very substantial proportion of the White students residing in
the geocodes assigned to the elementary special desegregation
schools do not attend those schools for grades 1-4:
Grades 1-4 Ellis Lee Shaw Emerson
Only the Shaw enrolls as many as one in four White elementary
students in the geocodes assigned to it, supporting the
conclusion of Report No. 2 that the Shaw does the most
effective job of reaching out to parents to encourage the
attendance of their children.
Percent of all stidemts
Attending other Boston
Percent of all student
Percent of all students
b. The Ellis is strongly affected by the competition of magnet'
schools, with two-thirds of the geocoded White students
assigned to the school attending other Boston public
schools. This presumably reflects the popularity of the
Curley and Trotter schools in Jamaica Plain. For comparative
purposes, note that 16% of White elementary students in
Boston (20% exclusive of East Boston) attend magnet schools;
among special desegregation schools only the Shaw, with 21%
of the students in its geocodes attending magnet schools, is
in this range.
c. The Lee, drawing White students from West Roxbury, and the
Emerson, drawing White students from South Boston, are
particularly affected by non-public (presumably parochial)
school attendance, amounting to four out of five White
students in their geocodes. By comparison, total White
enrollment in non-public schools located in Boston is
slightly above total White enrollment in the Boston Public
Schools (see Report No. 2 section on White Enrollment
Trends); one would thus expect 50-5b% of the White students
in these geocodes to attend non-public schools.
d. The Ellis and Lee have fourth grade advanced work classes
which draw White students from other geocodes, so that in
fact the figures above give too favorable a picture of the
ability of the two schools to hold their geocoded White
students. The Shaw and the Emerson, on the other hand, send
fourth graders from their geocodes to advanced work classes
in other schools, and thus actually do somewhat better than
these figures suggest.
e. How desegregated could these schools be, given their present
geocodes? If all students living in those geocodes grades 1-
4 attended their district public schools (and leaving aside
the question of capacity), the Ellis would be 45% White (vs.
the present 8%), the Lee would be 70% White (vs. 22%), the
Shaw would be 55% (vs. 28%), and the Emerson would 51% (vs.
How is Black enrollment affected by the competing options for
Grades 1-4 Ellis Lee Shaw Emerson
School 124 155 101 34
Percent of all students 60% 90% 80% 39%
Attending other Boston
Percent of all students
Percent of all students
* more Black students
than live in its
a. The Ellis loses a high proportion of Black students to other
options for grades 1-4, including both magnet schools (20% of
Black enrollment) and non-Boston-public schools (20% of Ellis
geocodes). It is possible to speculate that this reflects
the Metco program and also the strong Black enrollment in St,
Joseph's and several other parochial schools, as discussed in
Report No. 2. Note that the Ellis has an advanced work class
which draws in Black students in the fourth grade from other
geocodes, so that the actual loss is larger than these
b. The Shaw loses very few Black students to magnet schools or
to fourth grade advanced work class), which speaks well for
its attractiveness. On the other hand, the Shaw loses 21
Black students to Metco and/or the nearby Adventist and
c. The Emerson loses a substantial number of Black students -
more than it retains - to other Boston public schools, some
of them perhaps to advanced work classes, others to magnet
schools. Other students are lost to non-Boston public school
options, including Metco and/or St. Patrick's and other
d The Lee actually enrolls more Black students than live in its
geocodes, presumably because of its advanced work class,
which enrolls 46 Black students. It is impossible to
determine how many Black students living in its geocodes
attend magnet schools, but the number is presumably small.
Only 15 Black students are in Metco and/or non-public
It is not possible to provide a similar analysis of Other Minority
enrollment from the geocodes assigned to these schools, because of
the distorting effect of bilingual program assignments. The
proportion of Other Minority students living in the geocodes of
these special desegregation schools who attend non-Boston public
schools ranges from 14% for the Lee to 9% for the Emerson, 8% for
the Ellis, and none for the Shaw.
In summary, non-public school enrollment has a very substantial
impact upon White enrollment in all four schools, though not to an
equal extent, as does attendance in magnet schools. The advanced
work classes located at two of the schools do not seem to make a
significant difference. Overall the Shaw does the most effective
job of holding its White students, with only one out of five
attending a magnet school or advanced work class, followed by the
Emerson, the Lee, and the Ellis, with two out of three attending a
magnet school .
Black enrollment is much less impacted by non-public school
enrollment, though this is not insignificant.
In assessing the impact of recruitment measures undertaken since
the First Monitoring Report and over the coming summer, we will
compare the 1983-84 enrollments for kindergarten through grade
four with the 1984-85 enrollments for first through fifth grade,
to determine what proportion of all students, and especially White
students, are attracted to or retained in their district special
Black enrollment is much less impacted by non-public school
enrollment, though this is not insignificant.
In assessing the impact of recruitment measures undertaken since
Report No. 1 and over the coming summer, we will compare the 1983-
84 enrollments for kindergarten through grade four with the 1984-
85 enrollments for first through fifth grade, to determine what
proportion of all students, and especially White students, are
attracted to or retained in their district special desegregation
4. PROJECTED COMPLIANCE
Do the assignments for 1984-85 make it likely that special
desegregation schools will be in compliance with the Court-ordered
For each special desegregation school, the number of White
students assigned at each grade for 1983-84 was compared with the
actual enrollments for November 1983; the resultant "shrinkage"
rate was then applied to the proposed enrollments for 1984-85 to
permit a projection of the November 1984 enrollments. Both the
proposed White proportion and the projected White proportion for
1984-85 were compared with the "ideal" proportion of White
The Ellis School would be in ideal compliance (18% White) if all
assigned White students attend in the Fall. Based upon
"shrinkage" in 1983, however, the school is projected to be 50%
below the ideal. If more than 33 White students are in attendance
in November 1984, the Ellis will be able to claim improvement in
its ability to retain assigned students.
The Lee School would be 10% above the ideal (32% vs. 29% White) if
all assigned White students attend in the Fall. Based upon
projected "shrinkage," the school will be slightly below the
permitted range for White enrollment, though not as much so as
this year (66% of the ideal this year, projected 72% of the ideal
next year). If more than 79 White students are in attendance in
November 1984, the Lee will be able to claim improvement.
The Pauline Agassiz Shaw School would be 48% above the ideal (31%
vs 21% White) if all assigned White students attend in the Fall.
Based upon projected "shrinkage," the school should still be
slightly above the ideal and well within the permitted range, as
it is also this year. If more than 44 White students are in
attendance in November, the school will be able to claim
The Emerson School would be well below the permitted range for
White enrollment even if all assigned White students attend in the
Fall (19% vs 35% ideal). The school experienced little
"shrinkage" from what was a low level of White assignments in
1983, and is projected at 18% White for the Fall. If more than 27
White students are in attendance in November, the school will be
able to claim improvement. In this case as in the others, of
course, additional White students might be assigned as they enter
the system over the next months.
The Robert Gould Shaw School would be substantially below the
permitted range if all assigned White students attend in the Fall
(23% vs. 36% ideal). In 1983 the White enrollment improved
slightly over the number assigned, and a similar performance this
year should raise the White proportion to 26%. If more than 65
White students are in attendance in November, this will represent
improvement over the 1983 retention rate.
The Thompson Middle School would be below the permitted ranye if
all assigned White students attend in the Fall (17% vs. 24%
ideal). "Shrinkage" was substantial in 1983, and projected White
enrollment is 12%. If more than 44 White students are enrolled in
November, this will represent improvement in the retention rate.
Burke High School would be just within the permitted range for
White enrollment (14% vs. 18% ideal) if all assigned White
students attend in the Fall. Additional assignments last summer
brought an improvement over the projected number; if this is
repeated, the school should be slightly below the ideal in the
Fall. If more than 108 White students are in attendance in
November, the school will have improved its retention rate. Since
much of the improvement last summer depended upon action by the
Department of Implementation, it is perhaps unfair to place too
high an expectation upon the school's own efforts beyond retaining
the students already assigned.
Dorchester High School would also be just within the permitted
range (14% vs. 18% ideal) if all assigned White students attend,
and a "shrinkage" rate similar to last year's would produce a
slight improvement. More than 123 White students in attendance in
November would represent progress. The primary difference is that
Dorchester operates a number of magnet vocational programs for
which it is permitted and encouraged to recruit city-wide; Burke
has nothing to compare with this opportunity to attract White
In 1983 a total of 633 White students were assigned to these eight
schools, and 527 were in attendance in November, for a "shrinkage"
rate of 17%. This Spring 612 White students have been assigned to
attend next Fall; more than 512 White students in attendance in
November will represent overall progress in retention and
In summary, the Ellis, Lee and Shaw Elementary Schools and Burke
and Dorchester High Schools have been assigned enrollments for
1984-85 which appear within or above the permitted range for White
enrollment, but projections based upon 1983 "shrinkage" show only
the Shaw and the two high schools in compliance. In the Fall it
will be possible to assess whether program development and
recruitment measures (together with additional assignments) have
in fact improved the ability of these eight schools to achieve the
desegregation requirements set by the Court.
5. JEREMIAH E. BURKE HIGH SCHOOL
Draft Order of November 6, 1981: With respect to Burke, the
Department of Implementation shall prepare three plans: a
curricular proyram plan, a facility improvement plan, and a plan
for staffing which fits the curricular program for Burke High
CURRICULUM AND STAFFING
Are curriculum revisions and staffing patterns consistent with
the special desegregation plans submitted to the Court?
Two monitoring visits; interviews with Headmaster; review of
During the last phase of monitoring, the Headmaster stated that
the Burke's computer program was doing well, but that the
originally-planned Communication Arts program had been reduced to
a Theatre Arts program supported with 636 funds.
The Department of Education recommended that, in light of the
reduced scope of the Theatre Arts and the "computerization" of
most Boston schools, the Burke should develop a new magnet program
to enhance the ability of the school to attract students.
During this monitoring period the Headmaster reported that his
goal is to strengthen and expand the school's computer program.
He himself is taking computer classes, and is learning firsthand
the complexities and potential pitfalls associated with developing
a computer program.
He believes that the Burke's program is developing satisfactorily
(there are already 12-14 trained staff, and Burke students are at
the forefront of the Urban Scholars' Program at U Mass), but does
not want to proceed hastily.
His immediate objectives are to establish a computer software
library and to train staff in the software already available at
the school, which includes software in virtually all the subject
areas. Since their excellent "computer liaison" from U Mass has
moved to a new position, he is using 636 funds to hire a
The Headmaster wants to obtain some IBM PC's because the Burke's
business partner. New England Life, uses them (New England Life
employs 30-60 Burke students every year). Given the Apples and
dec's already in place, the Burke would be able to train students
on most of the computers used by businesses.
The Headmaster's goal is to ensure that each student who graduates
from the Burke is computer literate. This year, the Burke has
focused particularly on developing computer literacy classes for
special needs students.
He realizes that "Computer literacy" does not suffice as a magnet
theme, and is considering expansion of related curriculum areas.
He would like to develop a pre-engineering/math specialization,
but knows it will be difficult. The math scores of students
entering 9th grade in District V are among the lowest in the
city. This approach would require significant changes in teaching
The programs available, while improving, still do not constitute
an effective magnet offering which could draw students for whom
other high school options are available.
Previous Reports noted delays in carrying out the facility
improvements cited in the plan submitted to the Court. Have these
now been undertaken and completed?
Review of written documents submitted to monitors for school
facilities, and on-site observation.
Facility improvement at the Burke has not yet begun and is a full
year behind schedule. As of April 25, the bid had been awarded to
a general contractor. Actual work is scheduled to begin in June,
and to finish by the end of the summer. Monitors were informed
that these delays have continued to have a serious impact upon
staff, student and parent morale.
) RECRUITMENT AND RETENTION
Is the school effectively recruiting students, and are students
Interview with Headmaster; review of student applications for
ninth grade assignments.
Burke High School is working closely with its business partner to
develop an attractive and informative brochure that will include
an expression of interest form.
Improved attendance has been a major priority for the school this
year. The Headmaster has been experimenting with several
approaches, and expressed interest in a system-wide colloquium on
To date, no major recruitment efforts have been undertaken. There
was no increase in the number of White students giving Burke as
first preference for 1984 over 1983. The Department of
Implementation has assigned additional white students, and
currently projects compliance with the Court-ordered enrollment
ranges in 1984-85.
The Headmaster expressed concern about the school's ability to
mobilize resources effectively for continuing improvement in light
of the large number of 5U2.4 LA/B students assigned to the Burke,
and the prospect of a substantial increase. The monitors analyzed
the assignment patterns of substantially separate LA/B students
and found that the number of .4 LA/B students assigned to District
V is disproportionately high, relative to the District's share of
high school students (see Figure 1).
6. DORCHESTER HIGH SCHOOL
Draft Order of November 6, 1981: "With respect to Dorchester, the
D.I. shall conduct an assessment of the curricular, physical plant
and staffing needs of Dorchester High School for the 1982-83
school year and shall file a report of the results of such study.
Including recommendations for change."
In May 1982 Superintendent Spillane submitted his plan for
facility and program improvements.
CURRICULUM AND STAFFING
Are curriculum revisions and staffing patterns consistent with the
special desegregation plans submitted to the Court?
Two visits to the school and to individual programs, and
interviews with the Headmaster.
Last year, monitors found that the curriculum had been
strengthened by adding an ROTO instructor/program and by
developing a Health Careers Magnet program, although
transportation problems threatened to jeopardize the latter.
Staffing problems were weakening the cooperative Magnet Shops, and
plans were being discussed to remove the shops from Dorchester
It was recommended that the School Department (1 review this
potential removal for its impact on the desegregation of the high
school, (2) provide staff for the operation of the cooperative
education program, and (3) resolve the transportation difficulties
of the Health Careers Magnet.
During this monitoring period, it was found that most of these
problems are being or have been resolved.
The magnet shops have now been established permanently at
Dorchester, and are being expanded. The Director is planning a
program of several clusters (house carpentry, urban retrofit.
furniture repair and refinishing, upholstery and draperies and
painting and decorating). In addition, each vocational student
will take classes each year in entepreneurship: general business,
typing, marketing and advertising.
Two new teachers have been promised for this program, and there
are negotiations to improve supervision of the cooperative
Transportation is now provided to take Health Careers students to
their observation sites. The Directors of the program, which has
benefitted greatly from the cooperation of Carney Hospital,
believe the clinical observation component has been quite
successful. Students experience the routine work of various jobs,
including their less pleasant aspects, and learn first-hand the
educational requirements necessary to advance beyond low-
skill/low-pay jobs. Next year, the second year students will
receive long-term observation-site assignments, which could become
jobs for the non-college-track students.
A second staff person has been added to the ROTC program. The
sergeant-major (the first Black member of the ROTC staff) has been
received as favorably as the commanding officer was. The program
has retained all its students (except one who left for health
reasons), and is proving to be an attraction for the school.
To what extent have the facility improvements cited in the plan
submitted to the court been undertaken and/or completed?
Review of written plans submitted to the school facilities
monitor, and on-site observation.
The improvement of Dorchester High facilities is more than 40%
complete. The final phase should commence June 1 and be completed
by the end of the summer.
SAFETY AND SECURITY
Dorchester High School has experienced safety and security
problems. Are these concerns being resolved?
Consultation with the monitor for safety and security, and on-site
According to the Headmaster, the internal security of the
buildings has been as good this spring as it was last fall; there
have been no significant problems.
Problems persist outside the buildings that may deter students
from attending. In particular, there is a field that must be
crossed to get to school in which students, especially white
students, are sometimes harassed.
was observed; it
Is the school effectively recruiting students?
Interview with the Headmaster; review of recruitment materials.
Review of student applications for ninth grade.
it in ur
Dorchester High undertook an ambitious recruiting
year. A recruiting team, which included a ROTO student in uniform
and a Health Careers student with a program badge,
schools. An attractive brochure, "Home Improvement", about the
new magnet was among the materials distributed. Individualized
follow-up letters, prepared on the school's new word processor,
were sent to 300 students who expressed interest in Dorchester.
Despite these efforts, only four White students expressed a first
preference for a Dorchester magnet program, and it is clear that
continuing efforts will be needed. On the other hand, a number of
White students expressed the preference to remain in the programs,
and the recruitment efforts may well assure that more White
students who are assigned involuntarily actually enroll in the
school in September. On the basis of projected enrollment the
school will be in compliance.
The number of Black students who gave a Dorchester magnet program
their first preference for 1984-85 doubled from 12 to 25 this
7. EAST BOSTON HIGH SCHOOL BUSINESS MAGNET
Order of May 3, 1976: "East Boston High shall ... be
desegregated in accordance with plans to be formulated by the
parties and submitted to the court."
What is the curriculum of the Business Magnet Program and does it
comply with the Court-approved plan?
The monitor corresponded with and met with the Headmaster of East
Boston High School and District VIII Superintendent.
The last report found the Business Magnet to be a weak program
that suffered from neglect by the School Department. There were
no teaching or administrative staff assigned full time; the
Director of the Program is also Chair of the Business Department,
and the Business Magnet teachers are also Buisness Department
No special support services were provided to the Business Magnet
students, most of whom are minority students from outside District
VIII. No staff were specially assigned to develop cooperative
(work site) experience or job placements. No seats were reserved
(as promised) in a post-secondary business education institution.
The curriculum had not been systematized, and the Magnet's earlier
affiliation with Salem State College had languished.
The monitors commenced this phase of monitoring by requesting in
writing a written response from Boston to its previous monitoring
report. (See attachment #1,) The Headmaster responded with a
lengthy letter that described a number of improvements (both
planned and already accomplished) for the Magnet. A meeting was
subsequently held between the monitor and the Superintendent of
District VIII, the Headmaster of East Boston, and the Director of
the Business Magnet.
The school officials showed evidence of commitment to improving
the quality of education at East Boston High School, have begun
developing a comprehensive plan, and have started implementing
some of its components. A major portion of the meeting centered
on strengthening the desegregati ve component of the Business
Unfortunately, the scope of potential improvements is limited, at
present, to the resources of District VIII. Central office has
not, as yet, made any effort to promote compliance with the Court
orders at East Boston High School and attempts to support District
VIII have been limited (see paragraph below on computers).
The changes already implemented by East Boston High School are
described in the attached letter from the Headmaster. They are:
Downgrading Reprographics from a major to a one-semester
Consultation with Dr. Sperber of Boston University and
investigation of an affiliation with Fisher Junior
Boston's Director of Computer Education is responding
favorably to the high school's request for 20 Apple
computers to be used exclusively in the Business
There have been four training sessions for high school
staff in computers presented by Salem State College.
A guidance Counselor has been assigned to the Business
Magnet to improve work-site and job placement.
The plans for long-range curriculum improvement at the high school
would also affect the Magnet. These plans, which are still in the
development stage, focus on a 9th and lOth grade core Curriculum
that would satisfy most of the School Department's new graduation
requirements as well as ensuring a solid foundation in basic
ski 1 Is.
Several elements are necessary to strengthen the Business Magnet:
1. Support services for students, especially for freshmen
Most of the Magnet students are minorities unfamiliar with,
and perhaps apprehensive of, the community of East Boston.
The plan for the Business Magnet originally included a
support component with guidance and multicultural aspects.
This commendable plan should be revived and refined.
It is essential that a magnet vocational education program
provide students with opportunities for work-site experience
related to their training, and assistance in obtaining
employment. A program with several hundred students should
have a full-time staff person assigned to job development,
placement and, possibly, career counseling.
3. Opportunities for Higher Education
East Boston High School administrators have long been aware
that a number of magnet students develop an interest in
higher education after coming to their school. The
educational goals of some of them can be accommodated by
transfers into the regular program at the high school, the
procedure for which has recently been facilitated by the
Department of Implementation.
However, there will be other students who want a business
education that prepares them to continue their studies after
graduation. It is important that the business magnet open
this option to the students recruited to the program;
otherwise, the "magnet" will be closing off educational
options for its students.
There are numerous alternatives. A college-oriented business
management major could be developed. Some or all of the
existing majors could be expanded to include a college-
oriented level as well as a clerical and secretarial level.
Of course, all of this will require additional funding. At this
point. East Boston High School is not only not receiving any funds
or staff to improve the Business Magnet, but it is also losing
four staff positions. Furthermore, central office has done little
to assist District VIII in obtaining grants or other funds from
external sources. For example, federal Vocational Education Act
(P.L. 94-482) funds could be used to develop virtually all the
improvements described above, but central office has not given
East Boston High School the opportunity to apply for these
funds. The high school receives Chapter 636 (state desegregation)
funds for a reading program which serves most ninth graders; none
of these funds are used to strengthen the Business Magnet.
Reforms of the Business Magnet are long overdue. The
administration of District VIII and East Boston High School appear
to have begun those reforms that can be accomplished at the
district level. Their scope will be seriously circumscribed
without support from central office.
RETENTION AND JOB PLACEMENT RATES
What are the retention rate and the job placement rate of the
Regular monitoring revealed that no systematic records were kept
for the Business Magnet students, so that it was impossible to
obtain reliable information regarding retention and placement
rates. Monitors again tried to obtain these data, and they are
still not available.
However, the Headmaster has responded--in the absence of
additional funds or staffing--by assigning one of the high school
guidance counselors who will maintain records for Magnet students
(transfers, departures from program, placements).
The Headmaster has stated that he will need additional data from
the Department of Implementation to keep proper records of the
ASSIGNMENT AND TRANSFER POLICIES
How has Boston reevaluated its assignment and transfer policies
between the Business Magnet and the rest of East Boston High
The Department of Implementation submitted, in response to the
last monitoring report, a written assurance that requests for
transfers from minority students would be expeditiously honored.
During this monitoring period, the Headmaster has assigned a
guidance counselor to manage the records of transfer requests.
How effective is the parent/community monitoring required by the
The monitor conferred with resopesentatives of the City-wide
Parent Council (CPC).
During the last pohase of monitoring, the CPOC provided assurances
that it would monitor the Business Magnet. The CPC has begun, for
this monitoring period, a two-pronged effort: active oversight of
Boston's management of the program and, simultaneously,
organization of Business Magnet parents.
8. ATTRITION AT THE EXAMINATION SCHOOLS
1. The Department has been investigating the causes of high
attrition rates among Black and Hispanic students at the exam
schools as part of its monitoring of the court orders.
During this monitoring report the Department focused on the
students of the exam schools. The monitors inteviewed 135
students, using a 14-page questionnaire prepared for computer
coding. What does this survey reveal about the causes of
Black and Hispanic attrition rates at the exam school?
2. In Report No. 2, Boston's Advanced Work Class/Academically
Talented Section Program was cited for inadequately preparing
students for the examination schools. The report
cited: (a) an inappropriate selection process that relies on
two test scores; (b) the lack of a specific, differentiated
curriculum; (c) the lack of a teacher training program and a
specific staff evaluation process; (d) the lack of any links
between the exam schools and AWC/ATS; and (e) a poorly
coordinated and unsuccessful bilingual component.
3. In Report No. 2, the monitors cited the examination schools
for several problems relative to the inadequate delivery of
support services to Black, Hispanic and other students. Some
of these problems were found to prevail at all three exam
schools, and some were found only at particular schools.
What has Boston done to provide appropriate and effective
support services for Black and Hispanic students.
Because the Department's mandate concerned both students who
have experienced trouble at the exam schools and minority
students who have attended those schools, the students
selected for interviews included a high proportion of both
groups. Most were minority students (74%): 26% were White,
56% were Black, 8% were Hispanic and 10% were Asian. Forty
percent of the 135 students had left an exam school before
graduating. Many of them had experienced trouble while at an
exam school: 76% had failed one or more classes, and 23% had
been suspended. However, those interviewed included honor-
roll students and students with exemplary discipline
records. All 135 students are currently enrolled in a public
school in Boston. We believe these in-depth interviews
represent the best data available regarding students at the
The monitors also talked and corresponded with the Director
of the AWC/ATS and with the Headmasters of the examination
schools, and made follow-up monitoring visits to all three
schools to supplement visits during the last monitoring
FINDINGS FROM STUDENT QUESTIONNAIRE
The scope of this project was so extensive that it was not
possible to analyze all the resulting data in time for this
report. Consequently, this report focuses on the data concerning
three topics: support services, support from family and friends,
and school climate.
1. Support Services
Forty percent of the students who failed a class reported
that no one offered to help them. The rate was the same at
all three exam schools and for White and for Black and
Hispanic students. A somewhat hiyher percentage of the
students now in an exam school (67%) reported offers of help
than did students who had left (54%), which may reflect
recent improvements in support services at the exam schools.
2. Support from Family and Friends
The students reported a generally high level of support from
families and friends for their efforts at the exam schools.
There were some differences among the racial/ethnic groups.
For example, 64% of the Black and Hispanic students said
their friends thought going to an exam school was a good
idea, compared with 77% of the White students. There was no
perceptible difference between the responses of the leavers
and the students still in an exam school on questions
concerning friends' attitudes and parental help with
3. School Climate
a. Students and Race
The students' responses were overwhelmingly positive (71%)
when asked how people of different races and ethnic
backgrounds got along at their schools, and about their own
degree of comfort with the rcial mix (81% said they were
comfortable); these results must be qualified by noting that
the students seem to have interpreted these questions as
referring only to race relations among students. There was
no noticeable difference among the responses of students who
left an exam school and those who are still in attendance. A
lower percentage of Black and Hispanic students responded
favorably than did White students, and Tech and Latin Academy
students were, proportionally, more favorable than Latin
School students about racial climate.
b. General School Climate
Despite the students' highly favorable perceptions of race
relations, their general attitudes toward their schools were
negative; only 23% responded "positive" when asked to rate
their schools, 32% were neutal , and 45% responded
"negative." Surprisingly, the students who had left an exam
school were far more positive than the students who are
currently enrolled (the percentage of positive responses was
twice as high among levers as among current attenders).
Again, minority students were more negative than White
students, and Latin School students gave the highest
proportion of negative responses.
c. Relations with School Staff
When asked what they like least about their exam school,
students most frequently citd relations with school staff.
In fact, it is the only factor examined in this report that
provoked widely differing responses from leavers and current
Although no question on the survey instrument directly asked
students about their perceptions of staff, 87% of the leavers
referred spontaneously to staff with "bad attitudes" and/or
teachers with unsound teaching practices, compared with only
35% of the current enrollees. The highest proportion of such
responses came from Tech (75%); 60% of Latin School and 42%
of Latin Academy students made such references. More than
half of the students from each racial/ethnic group made such
references. A much smaller percentage of the students (15%)
talked of racism among school staff. Twice as many minority
students as White students, and twice as many dropouts as
current enrollees, referred to such alleged racism
Several implications can be drawn from the responses of these
students. First is the importance of early, coordinated
intervention at times of academic and other problems. Individual
students spoke enthusiastically of the effectiveness of school-
initiated support. The overall impression, however, is that such
intervention is isolated and haphazard at all three exam schools.
Second, this survey does not substantiate the hypotheses that lack
of support from family and friends accounts for exam-school
attrition, especially among Black and Hispanic students. To be
sure, some students related that trouble with family or friends
interfered with their ability to perform at school. In general,
students of all races felt supported by family and friends.
Leavers and currently enrolled students did not report any
appreciable differences in such support.
The students' responses to school climate issues clearly
differentiated between the atmosphere created by relations with
other students, and that created by relations with school staff.
The critical students were selective, contrasting "good" and "bad"
staff in the same school. Students were also specific and
functional in their criticisms, describing in detail the behaviors
and attitudes they found discouraging or provocative, and the
failure, in specific cases, to perform the functions of teaching,
counseling or administration effectively.. It is doubtful that
support services alone will be able to (or should be asked to)
redress these internal problems, or that the high attrition rate
will be significantly reduced until the problems are redressed.
The students we interviewed had high expectations of the exam
schools, but many of them have been disappointed. Boston cannot
afford to waste the talents of these bright and ambitious
FINDINGS FROM MONITORING
In response to Report No. 2 findings citing inadequacies in the
Advanced Work Class and Academically Talented Sections (AWC/ATS),
Boston has developed plans to remedy many of those inadequacies.
Specifically, Boston has: (a) proposed an improved selection
process for AWC/ATS which includes multiple criteria and citywide
versus district-wide selection (this would have to be approved as a
modification of existing Court orders); (b) begun to work on a
differenciated curriculum through planning summer workshops,
bringing in a national authority on curriculum development for
gifted programs; (c) initiated some inservice workshops for AWC/ATS
teachers; (d) initiated periodic meetings between Boston Latin
School staff and AWC/ATS staff; and (e) begun to plan for improved
services to the Spanish bilingual AWC/ATS, with the aid of a
U. Mass/Boston proposal for Chapter 636 funds.
2. Support Services
In Report No. 2, monitors cited the examination schools for
several problems of inadequate delivery of support services to
Black, Hispanic and other students. Some of these problems were
generally shared among all three schools and some were
specifically found at particular schools. The general problems
cited have been responded to as follows:
Problem Cited in Report No. 2
Actions Taken or Planned
a) Lack of a comprehensive early
warning system for students
with academic problems
b) Lack of a comprehensive
structure for the delivery of
basic support services.
Improved summer orientation
programs and stronger outreach
to improve attendance. Other
changes noted at individual
Plans formulated at
c) Lack of a uniform procedure for
exit interviews for Black and
Hispanic students seeking
d) Lack of appropriate summer
school courses and of
requirements for passing summer
school courses and Latin
School /Latin Academy make-up
test requirements (necessary to
receive course credit)
e) Latin School and Latin Academy
promotion policy which requires
students not promoted to repeat
even those courses they have
c) No uniform procedure evident,
although some exit interviews
are held at each school
d) No apparent changes yet, but
perhaps some greater effort to
provide summer school
instructors with Latin School
and Latin Academy curricula and
e) Monitors have not been informed
of any change in this policy
The following is a summary of actions taken or planned at each
examination school :
Boston Latin Academy
a) A major revision in the structure of counseling services is
planned, the results of which should be evident in the Fall of
1984. This plan will include the use of teachers to provide some
b) While a full physical education program is not evident, students do
participate in some physical activities or inside outside, as
c) 235 students are served in 3 different tutoring programs: School
volunteers. Project Assist, faculty-to-student.
d) A more refined and focused summer orientation program for incoming
e) 60 students will attend 3-week Shady Hill Summer School Program
(instead of Boston Summer School Program).
f) A revitalized Mass PEP (Pre-Engineering Program).
g) A new computerized reporting system on student attendance (part of
early warning system).
h) Plans for introduction of computer science courses in lower grades.
Boston Latin School
a) Plans to reorganize the structure of counseling services.
b) Plan for an after-school tutorial program staffed by Latin School
c) Shady Hill summer school for 7th graders, especially minority
students having failed 2 subjects,
d) Planned addition of another reading specialist to provide remedial
help. 143 students are currently served,
e) A revitalized Mass PEP.
f) 98 students tutored through school volunteers and peer tutoring.
g) 3 week summer orientation program (Summer Enrichment Program) for
incoming 7th graders.
Boston Technical High
a) 30-45 limited English Proficient students receive language support
services from 1 ESL (English as a Second Language) teacher.
b) 50 students served in peering tutoring program.
c) 3 additional counselors from the Human Services Collaborative will
serve students daily in the fall 1984.
d) A study skills curriculum is being developed.
The efforts made by the Department of Implementation to encourage
and assist principals of special desegregation and other schools in
need of recruitment to identify and reach out to students eligible
to attend those schools, including students not presently attending
The program development and recruitment efforts of Shaw Elementary
School and English and Dorchester High Schools, and the efforts to
improve school climate and program at Burke High School.
The measures taken by East Boston High School to improve the
Business Magnet, including the assignment of a guidance counselor
to improve student record-keeping.
The recognition of the need for major improvements in the AWC/ATS
program, with a well thought-out plan developed by the AWC/ATS
program director and support for some of the proposed changes.
Boston Latin School and Boston Latin Academy for beginning to plan
for improvement of the presently inadequate structure of counseling
services. All three examination schools for efforts to redress
problems Black and Hispanic students face in completing programs in
1. Boston should make student recruitment efforts a clear priority for
each school identified in the Second Monitoring Report as requiring
school-level measures to improve desegregation compliance.
Assistance should be made available as school staff clarify and
present the educational strengths of their schools.
2. Facility improvements outlined for Burke to the Court in May 1982
have still not commenced, a full two years later; they should
proceed on a priority basis.
3. The computer offerings at Burke should be developed into a coherent
and attractive program, distinctive from those available in other
4. Additional staff support at Burke is essential if it is to continue
to enroll a disproportionate number of LA/B substantially separate
students with behavioral problems.
5. Safety must be improved for students walking to Dorchester High
6. Boston should support the development of the East Boston Business
Magnet along the lines originally submitted to the Court, with a
wel 1 -structured course of studies, appropriate staffing, learning
objectives for each student, work-site experience and employment
counseling, college preparatory opportunities, and coordination
with other programs in the school. More support should be provided
to freshmen and to minority students. Records should be kept of
all transfers requested and of their disposition.
7. Boston should finalize plans for improving the Advanced Work
Classes/Academically Talented Sections and provide both the
resources and funds needed for its full implementation. More
efforts should be made to provide a strong mandatory staff training
program for all AWC/ATS staff, as well as an evaluation procedure
tailored to their different performance expectations.
8. Boston should change the promotion policy at the Latin Schools so
that students who are not promoted do not repeat those courses they
have passed; coordinate summer school requirements with Latin
School and Latin Academy make-up tests; and begin a uniform and
centrally documented process for exit interviews for Black and
Hispanic students desiring to transfer out of an examination
9. Remedial assistance (most of which is provided by peer tutors at
present) is seriously inadequate at the two Latin schools. Boston
needs to hire full-time, professional remedial teachers who should
concentrate on meeting the needs of 7th, 8th and 9th grade
10. The survey found that minority students report attitudes on the
part of some staff at the three examination schools which
discourage them from persisting at those schools. Boston should
undertake a systematic investigation of these problems, and develop
and submit to the Department a plan describing in detail how they
will be resolved. The generally good race relations among
students should be used to create an atmosphere of support for
Black and Hispanic students.
Desegreyation of special education programs shall be implemented
according to the standards contained in page 5 of the Student
Desegregation Plan dated May 10, 197b.
In monitoring objective 1, the monitors conducted on-site visits
to 10 schools and interviewed 70 teachers. Additionally, monitors
continued to review teacher certification waiver requests as
submitted by Boston.
In the course of conducting teacher interviews, the number of
students in each program and the age span of students by
prototype, were verified against enrollment rosters.
In monitoring objectives 3 and 4, the Division of Special
Education monitors, in consultation with the Bureau of Equal
Educational Opportunity, secured from Boston further documentation
for assigning special education students city-wide and, in
particular, to substantially separate "high incidence" programs.
In addition, monitors reviewed Boston's Corrective Action Plan in
response to the Department's citation of over-representation of
minority students in the 502.3 special education prototype. To
follow up on objective 5, monitors randomly selected
transportation complaints to determine resolution and to review
the effectiveness of the Department of Student Support Services'
complaint management system.
The Department will be conducting, during May and June, 1984, its
annual approval on-site visits to Boston's 502. 4(i) programs
(substantially separate programs in a facility other than a
regular education facility). Annual Program Applications for
these programs have been received.
The majority of problems identified in Report No. 1 for those 7
schools visited have been remediated. However, some findings and
problem areas have not been corrected as recommended. The process
for deploying substitutes has been modified. The State Board is
also charged with monitoring under the Allen v McDonough case. A
report was filed with the Massachusetts Superior court in February
To determine whether there is a resource room and appropriate
staff and materials in each school.
Does Boston have a resource room in every school?
Prior documentation provided by Boston indicated the existence of
a resource room in every school. However, on-site visits to
Brighton and Dorchester High Schools and Mackey Middle indicated
that 6 resource room teachers do not have classroom space provided
which is at least comparable in all physical aspects to the
average standards of regular education facilities. This problem
was cited in the February 1984 report and has not been
corrected. The Chinese Resource Room teacher now has a separate
classroom for these bilingual students. The space problem at
Charlestown High School has been remediated.
In Report No. 2, based upon a review of the roster for
bilingual/special education staff, several teachers were
identified by the monitors and Boston as needing updated
or new waiver requests for 1983-84 school year.
Monitors requested certification waivers for these
individuals. Have problems with assignment of qualified
staff, especially bilingual, been resolved?
There are 7b bilingual/special education staff, 53 of whom are
certified. In addition, 3 of the remaining 22 need to provide
evidence of certification.
From November 1983 to February, 1984, Boston submitted
certification waiver requests for 19 bilingual/special education
staff, including 2 bilingual psychologists. In reviewing these
waiver requests, the monitors recommended approval of 6. The
remaining 13 waiver requests need further clarification or
additional information submitted. It is anticipated that the
majority of the 13 will be approved.
The lack of certified and/or certifiable bilingual/special
education teachers and specialists is a major area of concern.
Boston projects it will have between 16 to 23 vacancies for such
personnel to recruit and fill for the 1984-85 school year. The
inability to fill these vacancies with appropriately qualified
staff will have a critical impact on special education service
delivery to bilingual/special education students.
In addition to the above-noted bilingual/special education
certification waivers, Boston also submitted 31 certification
waivers for monolingual special education staff. Based upon a
review of these waiver requests, monitors recommended approval of
11. The remaining 20 need further clarification or additional
information. Further, there are 10 teachers who were granted
third year waivers for the 1982-83 school year, for whom the
Department needs evidence of certification.
Of the 70 teachers interviewed during the recent on-site visits, 4
need to submit evidence of their special education certification.
In Report No. 2, monitors noted that based upon site
visits, there was minimal use of short and long term
substitutes. In addition, Boston established, for the
1983-84 school year, a pool of 20 substitutes to be
available on a day-to-day basis as needed. Does Boston
have an adequate pool of substitute teachers to ensure
special education service delivery?
There are 2 methods of deploying substitutes. In response to the
Allen vs. McDonough state court case, Boston has established a
pool of substitutes" to be assigned by the Department of Student
Support Services, as needed, to address non-compliance issues
under Chapter 766. The majority of these substitutes are deployed
to serve as aides in an overcrowded class until an aide can be
budgeted. In addition. Principals and Headmasters also obtain
short and long term substitutes through the Personnel Department
for teachers who are on leave or absent due to illness.
The monitors requested a summary from Boston to explain the
utilization of substitutes from the pool during the 1983-84 school
year. In its April 27, 1984 response, Boston provided monitors
with a listing of schools where these particular substitutes have
been deployed. Boston also provided evidence of recruitment of
substitutes via advertisements and circulars to colleges and
universities. Boston further stated that as many as 32
substitutes from this pool may be deployed at any 1 time; that
only 2 are special education certified and that none are currently
long term substitutes.
During this round of on-site monitoring, 7 long term substitutes
and 6 short term substitutes were identified. Only 1 of the
substitutes possessed special education certification. Long term
substitute coverage ranged from a maximum of 8 months to a minimum
period of 4 weeks. These substitutes are not from the pool of
Based upon on-site visits and teacher interviews, monitors are
concerned that deployment of non-certified long term substitutes
may have a negative impact on the effectiveness of delivering
special education services. According to the Chapter 766
Regulations, major service providers are responsible for
monitoring the student's progress, for writing progress reports,
for participating in review and re-evaluation team meetings,
recommending modifications to the Individualized Education Plans
(lEPs), and writing goals and objectives on the lEPs. Teachers
who do not possess the appropriate education, training and
experience may not be prepared to deal with the special needs of
In addition, based upon Principal and Headmaster interviews, there
appear to be differences as to how long term substitutes are
acquired and assigned. Boston needs to provide further
clarification regarding their long term substitute policies and
Report No. 2 indicated that there exists a process at each
school for ordering supplies and materials. In addition, the
Department of Student Support Services' Central Office has
set aside $20,000 to purchase materials and equipment for new
classes as a first priority. Does Boston have a system for
ordering, distribution, inventory control, and budget
maintenance for educational supplies and materials, which
also ensures equalization of materials distribution?
Based upon teacher interviews each school and district has a
process for ordering supplies and materials, and a per capita
allowance based upon the number of students attending a given
school. The majority of teachers interviewed indicated they had
adequate supplies and were familiar with the processes. However,
specific problems persist, as previously noted in Report No. 2.
The specific problems which continue are:
1. inadequate number of materials in Spanish, Chinese and
2. inadequate materials for new teachers to the system or
teachers who have been transferred from 1 school level
Have problems involving the mixing of different language
groups in the same resource room, cited in both previous
reports been resolved?
The on-site visit to the Condon Elementary bilingual resource
room indicates that there continues to exist the problem of
mixing of Spanish and Cape Verdean special education
II. To determine whether there are substantially separate classes
in at least 3 schools in each district.
This objective has been met and Boston remains in compliance.
III. To determine whether out-of-district placements of special
needs students are programmatically appropriate (in
consultation with the Director of Equal Educational
Opportunity for assignment implications).
Report No. 2 noted that in response to the citation of
over-representation of minority students in the 502.3
prototype, Boston submitted on September 30, 1983, its
Corrective Action Plan to address this matter. This
Plan was approved by the State Department of Education.
Is Boston continuing to implement the Prima Facie Denial
Action Plan under Massachusetts General Laws, Chapter
71B, Section 6, to address over-representation of Black
students in 502.3 prototypes?
Where disproportional ity has been cited through the
prima facie denial procedures, is Boston appropriately
reviewing and placing identified special education
students in accordance with Chapter 766 procedures?
In response to the citation of over-representation of
minority students in the 502.3 prototype, Boston submitted on
January 25, February 23, and April 4, 1984, status reports to
its September 1983 Corrective Action Plan. The Plan and
status reports indicate that the majority of elements are
being implemented on schedule.
Boston entered into a voluntary LAD plan which describes its
procedures for identifying the primary languages of all
students. This includes assessing the language dominance and
proficiency as well as achievement levels for insuring non-
biased assessment of minority children referred for a Chapter
766 evaluation. LAD categories and steps represent the
language proficiency levels of students and must be noted on
the students' Individualized Education Plans.
While Boston has a LAU Plan and bilingual special education
programs, it has experienced problems in recruitment and
hiring of appropriately qualified staff for its special
education programs, and in obtaining current LAD categories
and steps of bilingual students with special needs.
Report No. 2 noted
that Boston submitted to the monitors
addressing the apparent over-
minority students in Learning and
Adaptive Behavior (L/AB) programs. In addition, Boston
reviewed all L/AB placement recommendations between May
1983, to December 1983, and to insure compliance with
Chapter 766 procedures. Is Boston appropriately placing
identified special education students into substantially
separate prototypes (502.4)', especially L/AB programs,
in accordance with Chapter 766 procedures?
Boston operates three 502.4(1) programs (substantially separate
classes outside the regular public school). The Department of
Education will conduct its annual approval on-site visits to the
Carter, Tileston and McKinley 502. 4(i) programs during (May and)
Boston has established procedures to ensure that placement of
minority students in L/AB programs are for "compelling educational
reasons", in accordance with C.71B, S.6. To monitor the
implementation of these procedures, Boston committed itself to use
the Prima Facie Denial (PFD) checklist • for all minority students
at their original evaluation team meeting, and for all re-
evaluations of students placed in the L/AB programs. In addition,
as part of Boston's Comprehensive Internal Program Review Process
(CIPRP) developed pursuant to the Allen vs. McDonough case, Boston
randomly reviewed case records of 25 L/AB students. While the
CIPRP review found no inappropriate placements, Boston
acknowledged in its April 27, 1984 response that not all schools
are following the newly established procedures. Therefore, a
reminder to all schools has been distributed. Monitors will
continue to follow these procedures and will request periodic
updates from Boston.
Further, Boston is currently re-evaluating its educational,
psychological and sociological assessments to ensure that they are
culturally non-biased. Analysis of assessments will be completed
by June, 1984. Any changes will be implemented during the 1984-85
school year and in-service training will be provided.
IV. To advise the Director of Equal Educational Opportunity as to
the appropriateness of proposed program locations,
space/program matrices, and student assignments to programs
during the annual assignment process.
Documentation on program locations of substantially separate "high
incidence" programs, as well as a copy of the analysis of students
by prototype and race, was forwarded to the Bureau of Equal
Educational Opportunity. The proposed assignments for the 1984-85
school year were reviewed and approved, in accordance with the
Orders of Disengagement.
V. To determine the appropriateness of transportation
arrangements for special needs students and the effectiveness
of Boston's responses to transportation complaints.
Monitors have received 2 direct transportation complaints since the
February, 1984 monitoring report. In addition, monitors conducted a
random follow-up on 16 transportation complaints received by the
Department of Student Support Services' internal complaint management
system. Calls to parents indicated that out of the 16, 12 were remedied
and 4 need further follow-up.
Of the 10 classes in 4 schools (Brighton, Dorchester, Charlestown
High and Mackey Middle) identified in Report No. 2 as exceeding
Chapter 766 Regulations for class size, 3 remain in non-
compliance, 4 have been corrected, and 2 need further follow-up.
On-site visits and teacher interviews indicated that 1 resource
room at the Marshall Elementary School exceeds requirements for
class size. In addition, 1 L/AB class at Dorchester High School
exceeds class size limits during its self-contained physical
Of the 12 classes in 3 schools (Brighton, Dorchester and
Charlestown High) that had students with age span ranges exceeding
the regulatory requirements, Brighton and Dorchester High age span
waivers submitted by Boston were approved During the site visit
to Charlestown High School, it was difficult to verify the age
span waivers because the information submitted was incomplete
and/or inaccurate. During this round of monitoring, age span
waivers were also approved at the Kent and Condon Elementary
Schools and the Lewenberg Middle School.
Based upon April 1984 monitoring visits, teacher interviews and
case study reviews, it was found that all contacts with the
parents, written and oral, were not in the parents' primary
language at the Marshall Elementary, Lewenberg Middle and Brighton
High School .
1. Insure that a consistent method of distribution and inventory
control exist at each school, district, and Central Office. This
is necessary to ensure that appropriate materials are available
when needed, particularly for new teachers and for bilingual
special education teachers.
2. Continue to recruit appropriately certified bilingual/special
education teachers. Boston should submit a plan to the Department
of Education by July 9, 1984, indicating the status of
bilingual/special education personnel for the 1984-85 school year.
3. Provide documentation by July 9, 1984, of the steps Boston has
taken to recruit and hire appropriately certified special
education staff and to develop a pool of certified long term
4. Continue to ensure that Boston's procedures for placement of
minority students in substantially separate prototypes (502,4),
especially L/AB, are implemented.
5. Insure by July 9, 1984 that special education instruction areas
are at least equal in size to those for regular education, in
accordance with Chapter 766, regulation 508.1.
6. Insure by July 9, 1984 that problems regarding class size in those
schools cited in this report meet the requirements of the Chapter
766 Regulations, S. 502.2(b)(iv).
Desegregation of bilingual education programs shall be implemented
according to the standards contained in the Student Desegregation
Plan, May 10, 1975, pages 4-5, 44-45, 48-49, 70, 73-74; and the
Memoranda and Orders of May 6, 1977, pages 23 and 27; and March
21, 1978, page 5.
A number of activities were conducted by the monitors to gather
the data for this report. The monitoring activities dealing with
bilingual vocational occupational education were conducted
collaboratively between bilingual and occupational/vocational
monitors. All other bilingual education issues were monitored and
documented by one bilingual specialist.
The monitors conducted the following activities: analysis of
documents, computer printouts and correspondence from Boston;
informational meetings held with Boston personnel; development of
instruments for data collection; on-site visits in 15 schools,
including interviews with teachers, administrators, community
field coordinators, and guidance counselors; and
analysis/synthesis of data.
To review proposed program locations and space/program
matrices during the annual assignment process to assure that
adequate space and other provisions have been made for the
required programs, including bilingual kindergarten and
extended day kindergarten and to advise the Director of Equal
Educational Opportunity accordingly.
This objective was monitored for the first time during this
report period. What is the availability of space assignments
in the targeted languages?
A desk review of the proposed Transitional Bilingual Education
assignments and space matrix for each school in Boston for 1984-85
indicates that in all schools there are more spaces available than
projected enrollments. On the average there are 25 additional
spaces available in each school for next year. (524)
During the fall of 1984, the monitors will determine actual
enrollments through document reviews and on-site visits in order
to verify the present findings.
To determine, through regular monitoring activities, whether
all approved and required bilingual programs, including
kindergarten and extended day kindergarten, are in place and
In the previous report, it was indicated that 16 of 28
monitored classes were in non-compliance. At the Hubert
Humphrey Occupational Resource Center), 17 bilingual teachers
representing 5 languages teach in only 13 of the 37 program
offerings. In 9 other schools offering
vocational/occupational education, only 1 teacher teaches in
a language other than English.
During this monitoring period, did the monitors continue to
find deficiencies in the availability of bilingual staff in
the targeted languages, including native language teachers,
aides, and supportive staff (counselors, etc.) in bilingual
education programming as well as bilingual
vocational /occupational education?
Once again the monitors found the need for 7 bilingual teachers
and 13 bilingual aides in the regular bilingual programs at 5
additional schools. Also, native language guidance counselors are
needed in 6 additional middle and high schools. Three schools
reported that they had bilingual counselors only for 1 or 2 days a
In 9 vocational/occupational education programs monitored,
teachers who conduct their classes in English use bilingual
students to translate for limited English proficient students. In
only 1 of the schools, Jamaica Plain. High, are aides used in the
vocational/occupational classrooms. 8 teachers in 4 schools teach
courses outside their areas of certification. (426)
Last fall the monitors reported that there was a lack of
sequential curriculum materials developed for the
majority of native language instruction including the
occupational/vocational programs. It was also reported
that instructional materials in the native language
within the classrooms, resource rooms and libraries were
either non-existant or inappropriate. This spring, did
the monitors continue to find the need for sequential
curricula and materials in the targeted native
The 15 additional schools monitored continued to show the lack of
sequential curriculum materials, including the occupational/
vocational programs, for the majority of native language
instruction. Teachers interviewed reported that native language
instructional materials for the classrooms, resource rooms, and
libraries, are either non-existant or linguistically/culturally
inappropriate. This was found to be especially so in math,
science, social studies, native language arts and native history
In the last report, it was found that limited English
proficient (LEP) students in Boston did not have the
same access to educational programs as monolingual
(English) students because of the absence of native
language instructors and aides, absence of native
language support services in the examination schools and
the HHORC, and limited required course offerings in the
native language at the high school level. Did continued
investigation reveal similar issues of access?
The present findings confirm previous findinys. In 9 out of 10
schools with vocational/occupational education programs, all
courses mandated under Chapter 71A were not offered, instructors
in the native language were non-existent, and native language
support services in the examination schools (Boston Technical
High) were not available. Boston Technical High has, however,
hired an English as-a-Second Language (ESL) teacher.
Bilingual teachers were needed in 6 and bilingual aides in 9
schools without Vocational Education programs. Chapter 71A
mandated native language courses were not offered in the schools
in need of bilingual teachers nor in some of the schools with
bilingual teachers. (425)
In the previous monitoring period, 6 out of 11 Hispanic
program clusters visited did not conform with the
cluster concept (100 LEPs at the high school level and
80 at the middle and elementary school level, as
specified in the Voluntary Lau Plan). During this
monitoring period did the monitors continue to identify
a similar status for the language cluster concept at
both the middle and high school levels for all language
Present findings confirm previous findings. The cluster concept
is undersubscribed in 7 out of 9 Hispanic programs visited even
though there are 850 Hispanic LEP students enrolled at the middle
school level and 637 enrolled at the high school level. The
Laotian program at English High and the Greek program at West
Roxbury High which seemed to be undersubscribed were actually not
so because there are not enough high school students in those
language categories citywide. The same was found to be true for
14 Portuguese speaking students who attend the Madison Park High
Cape Verdean program.
In the last report, the monitors found that partial and
full ma inst reaming did not occur in some schools because
of overcrowded regular classes; the lack of parallel
scheduling among the bilingual and non-bilingual
classes; and absence of native language support services
in the mainstream program. During this spring's
monitoring cycle the monitors continued to evaluate the
space assignments allocated by Boston. Did the space
assignments provide for partial and full mainstreaming
of bilingual students?
Again, present findings confirm previous findings. In 4 out of 14
schools visited, school staff interviewed reported overcrowded
regular clasess. Six of the 14 schools did not have parallel
scheduling to facilitate mainstreaming.
The last cycle of monitoring indicated that problems
existed in assessing procedures for assignment of Lau
categories and in appropriate identification. Did these
problems continue during this monitoring period?
Teachers interviewed said that all students are assessed within 30
days of their arrival at school, but they reported delays in the
processing of the information after it goes to the central
office. As a result, they said, the computer printouts don't
reflect the information until much later (sometimes 1 to 2 months
later). Next fall, the monitors will compare a sample of LBP
student records in the schools monitored with data available in
computer printouts in order to verify the information provided.
In the previous monitoring report (February 1984) the
monitors indicated that efforts had been made by Boston,
especially through activities conducted by Chapter 636
state funded projects, to coordinate parent training and
involvement. During this spring the monitors met with
bilingual community field coordinators to investigate
this issue. What opportunities exist for bilingual
parents to participate in the educational process of
bilingual students in Boston?
Staff interviewed reported that, even though some efforts had been
made to coordinate parent training and involvement in the past,
more training of bilingual community field coordinators and the
new parents who come into the system every year, is needed. That
training should prepare them to participate in all state, local,
and court-mandated activities. Local and State mandates require
parental participation in the planning, development and evaluation
of bilingual programs.
To advise the Director of EEO on all bilingual education
aspects of student assignments, including: examination
school invitation, advanced work class invitations, student
assignment handbooks, assignments (including bilingual,
special, vocational), transfers, exceptions to racial
percentage limits for assignments.
In the previous monitoring report, it was found that
recruitment of LEP students to programs such as
vocational/occupational education, special education,
bilingual education, etc., was conducted in the various
native languages. Information about admissions tests
for the examination schools was available only in
English. Information about the advanced work class and
academically talented sections was available only in
English. During this monitoring period the monitors
followed up on last fall's findings. Were invitations
to examination schools and advanced work classes
translated into the various native languages?
As of the writing of this report the advanced work class
invitations had not been translated into any language other than
English, although information about the program is available in
Spanish. The invitations to examination schools have only been
translated into Spanish.
Based on the data collected and analyzed, we commend:
1. The Bilingual Community Field Coordinators for trying to
organize and train parents in spite of countless other
responsibilities assigned to them.
2. The Jamaica Plain High School administration for their
efforts to develop a program of academic excellence to
respond to the linguistic and cultural needs of both the
LEP and bilingual students within a desegregated
3. The high expectations of some bilingual teachers for the
limited English proficient students' achievement in the
1. In order to enhance mainstreaming possibilities, the
Department of Implementation should reduce
student/teacher ratios for non-bilingual curriculum
classes in those schools which house bilingual education
programs. This should be implemented by the fall of
2. The Bilingual Office should continue to train school
personnel in the areas of parallel scheduling and sister
clustering (pairing a bilingual and non-bi lingual ,
curriculum teachers to facilitate partial and full
3. All necessary bilingual teachers, aides, and counselors
should be hired to provide appropriate bilingual
education programming in accordance with local and state
mandates. These positions should be budgeted, for
school year 1984-85 . New staff should be in place when
classes start next September.
4. The information on all bilingual teachers should be
updated to ensure that everyone is teaching in his or
her area of certification by September 1984.
5. Boston should revise job descriptions of the Bilingual
Community Field Coordinators so that they can dedicate
more of their time to parent organizing and training
activities and less to helping parents with non-
bilingual education problems.
6. Boston should train all present and future bilingual
aides in teaching methods so that they can be of greater
help to the bilingual teachers in the classrooms.
7. The Lau Unit should complete the updating of the Lau
categories within 3U days from the enrollment of each
LEP and bilingual student.
8. The bilingual office should develop, reproduce,
disseminate, and guarantee the use of all necessary
curricula in native language arts, Science, Math, Social
Studies, Native History and Culture as well as any other
state and locally required courses for all language
groups. Guarantees of reproduction, dissemination, and
use in the classrooms of the curricula should be given
in order to make sure that the curricula developed is
available for the students, not just for one or two
years, but for many years to come.
9. The acquisition of linguistically and culturally
relevant materials for the classrooms and
libraries/resource centers should be instituted
immediately. Wherever possible, formal contacts should
be established with the departments of education of the
countries from which students come under to acquire
copies of materials available in the native language.
This effort should like other efforts complement not
supplant, the school department's responsibility towards
the education of limited English proficient and
10. Boston should involve the Master PAC, the City-wide
Parents Council (CPC), Plaintiffs Interveneers, staff of
the Department of Implementation and others in the
development of a plan to consolidate some of the high
11. Boston should extend, at the middle and high school
levels, their successful cultural enrichment programs as
well as other bilingual services to include non-
bilingual and bilingual students.
1^. The bilingual office should reproduce copies of the
local, state and federal mandates and guidelines in the
native language of parents for use by the community
field coordinators; provide training to parents,
teachers and other school department personnel
(including principals and headmasters) about those
mandates and guidelines; and expand the particpation of
bilingual parents in the planning, development, and
evaluation of the bilingual programs.
13. In the absence of a certified bilingual/vocational
teacher, LEP students enrolled in vocational/
/occupational education programs should be provided
supoortive services through native language speaking
aides and native language instructional materials.
14. Policies of bilingual language instruction in the
vocational/occupational programs should be enforced by
15. To insure that the LEP students achieve the same level
of concept development as the English proficient
students, the vocational/occupational bilingual and ESL
teachers should coordinate the teaching of the content
of the vocational/occupational program.
VOCATIONAL AND OCCUPATIONAL EDUCATION
In its order of September 25, 1975, the United States District
Court incorporated the "Unified Plan for Vocational and
Occupational Education in the City of Boston" as part of the
Court's May 10, 1975, School Desegregation Plan. The Unified Plan
was filed with the Court on September 8, 1975, and amended on June
14, 1976 and January 28, 1978.
The Unified Plan for Vocational and Occupational Education
includes eight major areas: (1) compliance with relevant court
orders, state laws and regulations; (2) district core programs;
(3) magnet programs; (4) in-school bilingual; (5) out-of-school
youth, ages 16-21; (6) vocational/occupational education for
special needs students; (7) program changes; and (8) program
support components. Each component of the Plan contains a set of
activities for improving vocational/occupational education in the
City of Boston.
The process for monitoring the implementation of this mandate by
Boston has involved both data collection and analysis and on-site
visits to selected schools. Information and supportive
documentation were provided by Boston. On-site visits were
conducted for the purpose of verification, clarification and
obtaining additional information.
Report II expanded the original list of major monitoring
objectives from six to eight, in order to reflect and coincide
more accurately with elements of the Unified Plan. The ultimate
goal is to determine the extent to which the activities of each
discrete component of the Unified Plan have been accomplished, and
in the process to assess the quality of vocational/ occupational
education in the City of Boston. Each component contains distinct
objectives and raises key questions.
1, Compliance with Relevant Court Orders, State Laws and
To determine if all vocational/occupational education
programs (1) conform to racial ratios established by the
Court and (2) comply with the admissions criteria specified
by the Unified Plan, including proportional representation by
In Report No. 2, programs cited for disproportionate
enrollment by sex showed improvement. However, programs
cited for disproportionate enrollment by race continue
to show disporportional ity. How does Boston justify
disproportionate enrollments by race and sex in certain skills-
training programs? What is being done to remedy this situation?
The disproportionate enrollments by race remain substantial in
most programs. Of 35 programs at the Hubert Humphrey Occupational
Resource Center (HHORC), only 8 are in strict compliance with the
goal for Black enrollments, 4 for White enrollments, and 2 for
other minorities. Significant over-enrollments of Whites also are
noted in the Agriculture-Business program at West Roxbury High and
the Machinist Program at Hyde Park High. Some non-magnet
occupational programs in 6 other high schools also over-enroll by
a single racial category.
The disproportionate enrollments by sex are also a concern in
certain programs at the HHORC. There is no female enrollment in
Plumbing, Building Maintenance, Welding, and Heating and Air
Conditioning programs, and no male enrollment in the Nursing
Assistant program. Enrollments follow the traditional patterns:
less than 10% of the Auto Repair, Auto Body, Small Engine Repair,
Electrical, Carpentry, Machine Drafting, and Electronics
enrollment is female; and less than 10% of the Cosmetology,
Medical Office, and Fashion Illustration enrollment is male.
2. District Core Programs :
To determine whether middle school career exploratory
programs, as well as high school exploratory and
employabil ity programs, are in place as specified by the
In the last report, Cheverus Middle School and Dearborn
Middle School did not offer required exploratory programs.
Brighton and Madison Park were the only
high schools offering required exploratory and
employabi 1 ity programs. Which programs are currently
operational? What steps has Boston taken to comply with the
district core program provisions?
Although some career education activities are already in place,
career guidance provided to middle school students entering high
school vocational program needs more coordination and
strengthening. Boston has drafted a comprehensive career
education plan outlining city-wide career education competencies
for all grade levels (K-12). Additional staff support will be
required to implement this plan.
All middle schools, except the Cheverus and Mackey, presently
provide programs in the three required cluster areas. Most middle
schools provide some degree of computer education. The scheduling
of cluster offerings varies; however, double periods rather than
single periods are needed to maximize learning in the Industry
Related and Foods-Home-Health-Services Related clusters.
In grade nine, ten high schools, excluding examination schools,
offer all 3 exploratory clusters. All district high schools send
exploratory students to the HHORC.
In grades 10-12, all 14 high schools visited, except the Umana and
Boston Technical offer the Business cluster. Only 4 schools offer
the Distributive Marketing program, and 7 schools offer the Food-
Home-Health Services Related cluster. Brighton High, Dorchester
High, J. E. Burke High and Madison Park High offer all 3 required
clusters. Eleven district high schools send students to the 3
employabil ity cluster areas at the HHORC.
3. Magnet Programs:
To determine whether all required magnet satellite programs
are in place as specified by the Unified Plan.
In Report No. 2, enrollments in magnet programs
decreased. No magnet program was offered at Jamaica
ordered magnet programs not being offered? What is being done to
Implement these programs?
Dorchester High now lists two additional magnet programs: Health
Careers and Interior Design. The magnet programs at Brighton High
(District I/Automobile), West Roxbury High (District III/Agri-
Business) and Hyde Park High (District IV/Machine) are still in
place as required.
East Boston High offers a Business magnet program. The East
Boston Machine Shop program is being phased out this school year
(Objective VII). The Magnet Information Management Program
designed for Jamaica Plain High is not in operation.
4. In-School Bilingual
To assess the provisions for supportive services, including
administrative, counseling and instructional support
services, to limited English-proficient students enrolled in
vocational/occupational education programs.
In the last report, although a Bilingual Vocational policy was
developed, its procedures and provisions were not widely
disseminated and implemented. Adequate numbers of bilingual aides
were lacking. Are adequate and sufficient supportive services
being provided to limited English-proficient students? What
action has been taken to strengthen supportive services to this
Adequate and sufficient support services are not provided.
Bilingual staffing for vocational/occupational programs continues
to be inadequate, particularly with regard to native language
speaking aides and vocational guidance counselors. Resources must
be allocated to address this concern. The Bilingual Vocational
Education Policy has not been adopted and implemented.
Appropriate administrative procedures and policies must be
directed toward ensuring successful implementation.
5. Out-of-School Youth, Ages 16-21
To assess the provisions for services for out-of-school
youth, ages 16-21.
In the last report, the Neighborhood Development
and Employment Agency, the responsible agency for
providing services to out-of-school youth, prepared a job training
plan that contains services to this priority population. What is
the nature and scope of services being provided by the responsible
agency? Are these services being coordinated with the Boston
The City of Boston provides a wide range of services to meet the
education and employment needs of out-of-school youth through its
Neighborhood Development and Employment Agency (NDEA). The
program's comprehensive system of services includes outreach and
assessment, remedial and basic skills instruction, job readiness
and skills training, career and individual counseling, and job
placement. Many of the programs are coordinated with the Boston
Public Schools and lead to credit toward a high school diploma and
entrance into skills training. Strengthening the coordination of
resources of the Boston Public Schools and the NDEA would expand
the capacity to serve this population. (578-579)
6. Vocational/Occupational Education for Special Needs Students
To determine if vocational and occupational education program
services for special needs students are maintained, and to
assess vocational/occupational instructor training in this
Report No. 2 stated that Boston had made significent
achievement in instituting a comprehensive delivery
system of vocational and occupational services to special needs
students. Does Boston continue to provide vocational education
program services to this target population? What action has been
taken to provide vocational education instructor training on
strategies and approaches for instructing learners with special
Boston continues to provide a comprehensive range of vocational/
occupational services for special needs students. These services
exceed the requirements set forth in the Unified Plan.
The need to provide in-service training for instructors of special
needs students enrolled in vocational/ occupational programs
remains an outstanding concern. This requirement has not been
adequately addressed. (581-582)
7. Program Changes and Deletions
To ascertain what action is being taken by Boston to complete
all program relocations as specified by the Unified Plan.
As stated in Report No. 2, Boston continued to plan for the
closing of the Machinist program at East Boston High School and
Upholstery/Cabinet Making program at Dorchester High School rather
than transfer of these programs to the Humphrey Occupational
Resource Center as required by the Unified Plan. Has Boston
completed all court-ordered program relocations? If such
relocations are not desirable, what motions have been filed with
the Court to modify the Unified Plan?
The status of program relocations has not changed since the
previous reporting period. Boston has moved to close the
Machinist program at East Boston High School and to modify the
Upholstery and Cabinetmaking programs at Dorchester High School
rather than to relocate them to the Humphrey Center. No effort to
modify the requirements of the Unified Plan has been undertaken.
8. Program Support Components
A. Management Modifications
To determine if a distinctive management structure for
vocational/occupational education has been implemented
as specified by the Unified Plan.
In the last report, Boston had not instituted a
distinctive management structure which defines clear lines of
authority over fiscal and programmatic operations, as specified by
the Unified Plan. What action has been taken to institute and
implement this structure?
A distinctive management structure which defines clear lines of
authority over programmatic operations to insure an effective
vocational and occupational education delivery system as specified
by the Unified Plan has not been instituted in Boston. The
Director of Education and Employment does not have total fiscal
and supervisory authority over all occupational education programs
at the district level under the current management structure.
Furthermore, evaluations (of outreach efforts and annual
systemwide program activity and accountability reports) need to be
elaborated in measurable terms. (586-588)
B. Public Information
To examine steps taken by Boston Public Schools to
institute and implement a systematic, aggressive and
pervasive public information system for
vocational /occupational education.
In Report No. 2, it remained neccessary for Boston to
appoint a full-time public information officer to coordinate an
effective and persuasive public information campaign. Has a
systematic, aggressive and pervasive system been instituted and
implemented in Boston? Do the activities encompass the scope,
impact and thrust of the public information system described in
the Unified Plan?
Noteworthy progress has been made in establishing a focused
direction and planned approach to a marketing and public
information system for vocational /occupational education. The
marketing plan which is being developed should incorporate the
appropriate strategies and elements set forth in the Unified Plan.
C. Professional and In-service Development
To determine what action Boston has taken to develop and
implement in-service training for all vocational/
occupational education instructors in the areas of equal
educational opportunity and bilingual vocational
Report No. 2 indicated that a comprehensive plan to
provide inservice training in equal educational opportunity,
bilingual vocational education and special education to
instructors systemwide was not submitted. Has a training plan
been devised to address these areas? What relevant activities
have been implemented?
A myriad of staff development and in-service training activities
have been conducted, primarily for personnel at the HHORC.
However, the inventory of activities does not include equal
educational opportunity and instructional strategies for learners
with special needs and/or limited English proficiency. Plans are
being devised to address these concerns in conjunction with the
Institute for Professional Development, an office of the Boston
Public Schools with primary responsibilities for staff training.
Follow-up on the results of these efforts will appear in the next
D. Industry /Agency /Community Involvement
To determine if the composition of the Advisory Council
for Career Vocational and Occupational Education
(ACCVOE) is representative' of all target populations
specified by the Unified Plan.
In the last report, the existing Advisory Council for
Career, Vocational and Occupational Education included all target
groups and representatives specified by the Unified Plan. Does
the current membership of the council continue to be in compliance
with the requirements of the Unified Plan?
The current membership of the Advisory Council for Career
Vocational and Occupational Education continues to reflect full
compliance with the target group representation required by the
Unified Plan. The active and sustained participation and
involvement of the full council membership, however, is lacking.
E. Curriculum Acquisition/Revision:
To review Boston's efforts to develop and implement a
full-scale Competency-Based Vocational Education
curriculum for all programs at the HHORC and other
While Boston was commended for its progress in the
development some Competency Based Vocational Education curricula,
what is the status of curriculum development and revision for all
vocational/occupational education programs?
Boston has progressed in developing and implementing Competency-
Based Vocational Education curricula for vocational programs at
the HHORC and for some business education programs and electronic
programs at district schools. Although some progress has been
made in curriculum revision, the development of curricula for all
programs is far from complete.
F. Comprehensive Job Development and Placement
To determine whether a comprehensive and responsive
city-wide job development and placement component based
upon current manpower demands, system capabilities and
student capabilities/interest is in place.
In the previous report, it was found that a city-wide
comprehensive job development and placement system was not yet
developed. Nor was a city-wide coordinator for coordinating all
job development and placement activities appointed. What action
has Boston taken to implement a city-wide comprehensive job
development and placement system?
The development of a city-wide comprehensive job development
system, as specified by the Unified Plan, has not been fully
instituted. Based on a previous action plan developed to address
this concern, a city-wide coordinator was to be selected and
appointed. To date, this has not been accomplished.
Implementation of Boston Compact goals and objectives took place
this school year in most schools as specified in their local plans
for job preparation and placement. The Career Passport Program,
G.I.S. (Guidance Information System) Jobs Collaborative, P.I.C.
(Private Industry Council) counselors, and active school business
partners have played a substantial role in designing and
implementing development and placement services. Follow-up
studies on recent graduates and job placements indicate current
student placement status and reveal areas needing further
1. Boston's draft city-wide career education plan demonstrates
comprehensive and systematic planning.
2. Significant progress has been made to increase the number of
computers in the middle schools so that all middle school
students will have some degree of computer education.
3. The increased magnet program offerings at Dorchester High are
a positive development.
4. Although the approach is not consistent with the Unified
Plan, the development of a Bilingual Vocational Education
Policy constitutes a positive and significant step toward
structuring a comprehensive, coordinated approach for
delivering vocational/occupational education services to
limmited English-proficient students.
5. The City of Boston provides a wide range of services to meet
the education and employment needs of out-of-school youth,
ages 16-21. (580)
6. Boston currently provides a number of exemplary vocational/
occupational education programs for special needs students.
7. Noteworthy progress has been made in establishing a focused
direction and planned approach to a marketing and public
information system for vocational/occupational education.
8. Boston's efforts in developing Competency-Based Vocational
Education curricula are commendable.
1. The lack of sufficient applications from each racial/ethnic
group for programs demonstrates that career exploratory
programs are not yet having the impact intended by the
Unified Plan. Boston should develop an action plan covering
measures by the school system to encourage sufficient
applications from each racial/ethnic group to permit
assignment of and maintenance of enrollments in each program
consistent with the "admissions criteria" section of the
2. The preparation and transition process for 8th graders
entering high school continues to be the area in greatest
need of coordination,
3. The capacity of the computer lab at Jamaica Plain High School
should be expanded to provide an Information Management
Program for that district as planned.
4. Appropriate administrative procedures and policy directives
should be forthcoming to ensure successful implementation of
the Bilingual Vocational Education Policy developed by
It continues to be essential to implement an adequ
system for limited English-proficient students in
programs. Appropriate action must be taken to appoint
additional bilingual counselors in order to provide adequate
In addition, steps should be taken to provide bilingual aides
to vocational/occupational programs where the identified need
5. The systematic and planned coordination of these resources
with Boston should be strengthened.
6. The need to provide in-service training for the instruction
of special needs students remains a concern. In-service
training in this area should be provided to vocational/
occupational education instructors city-wide.
7. If designated program relocations are no longer desirable, a
motion for modification should be filed with the Court.
8a. Boston should file a motion with the Court to modify the
organizational and management structure specified by the
Unified Plan if it feels such a structure is no longer either
programmatically desirable or financially feasible.
8b. The marketing plan should incorporate the appropriate
trategies and elements set forth in the Unified Plan. A
full-time coordinator for public information activities
should be appointed.
8c. A comprehensive staff development plan for all vocational/
occupational instructors should be developed. In addition,
this plan should include in-service training on strategies
for instructing limited English-proficient and special needs
students, and should address the area of equal educational
8d. The membership of the Advisory Council for Career, Vocational
and Occupational Education continues to reflect full
compliance with the Unified Plan requirements. Active and
sustained participation and involvement of the full council
membership, however, is lacking. Creative steps should be
taken to strengthen the active participation of the Council
in improving vocational/occupational education in Boston.
8e. The curriculum development process should be accelerated.
The total Competency-Based Vocational Education (CBVE)
curricula for all programs at the HHORC should be available
by June 30, 1984. The CBVE curriculum completed at the HHORC
also should be disseminated city-wide to other school
programs for adaptation and instructional use.
8f. In order to coordinate and strengthen the comprehensive job
development and placement system for vocational/occupational
education, a city-wide coordinator for job development/
placement activities should be appointed.
Transportation shall be provided according to the standards
contained at pages 80-83 of the Student Desegregation Plan, dated
May 10, 1975. These standards include transportation for students
assigned to elementary schools more than one mile from home, to
middle schools more than 1 1/2 miles from home, and to high schools
more than 2 miles from school. "The reason for mandatory
transportation may be distance, safety, or controlled transfer, or a
combination of these. . . The court has required no transportation,
however, that would pose a risk to the health of students or impinge
on the educational process for those students due to excessive time
or distance travelled."
The monitor (1) visited the Transportation Unit, examining its
operations and interviewing the Director, and some of his staff;
and (2) reviewed data that included sample routing schedules,
transportation locators by school and geocode, routing sheets and
all complaint forms submitted as of March 31.
1. To approve proposed transportation arrangements developed
pursuant to the approved student assignment plan each year,
assuring that such arrangements will adequately support both
desegregative and program assignments.
2. To determine whether transportation arrangements are in place
for the opening of the school year in September.
3. To monitor complaints received by the Boston Public Schools
in relation to transportation, and to assess whether
appropriate responses have been made.
Have adequate transportation arrangements been provided for
desegregating schools and programs? What kinds of transportation
complaints are being reported, and how is Boston responding to
Monitoring during the last period revealed these types of problems
that potentially undermine the effectiveness of the student
1. Inadequate performance by the contractor operating
School Department buses.
2. Threats to the safety of student passengers from other
passengers and from persons outside the school buses.
3. Inadequate performance on the part of the MBTA.
The School Department was asked to:
Review procedures for handling complaints about bus
Review procedures for controlling excessive changes
of route assignments,
Consider the use of monitors on runs with persistent
Review its precedures for allocating MBTA and school bus
1, Contractor Inadequacies
The School Department has two parallel systems for tracking
complaints about contractor performance.
The first is established in the School Department's contract with
the bus company (ARA), and allows the School Department to impose
The second system records complaints registered with the
Transportation Unit by parents and others. These complaints are
forwarded to the contractor for comment and possible action.
The School Department still does not have a formal procedure for
tracking complaints and identifying inadequate responses from the
contractor. The Transportation Unit used to have a staff person
assigned full time to Complaint Management. Staff reductions in
the Unit, however, eliminated that position and others.
Change of Route Assignments
Frequent changes of route assignments have been responsible for
much of the contractor's inadequate performance, since drivers
unfamiliar with their routes are more likely to be late, miss
stops, etc. The School Committee chose to permit the drivers to
police themselves, on the condition that the situation be reviewed
after the first year of the contract.
A preliminary report has already been filed by the contractor with
the School Department.
Even should the report show that changes of route assignments have
been controlled, it will not mean that contractor-related problems
on school buses have been solved. For example, the Transportation
Unit has indications that drivers' absenteeism and tardiness are
There is little that the School Department can do. As in the case
of changes in route assignments, absenteeism and tardiness are
exclusively regulated by the contract between ARA and the drivers'
union. The desciplinary system for refractory drivers (which
consists of a series of verbal warnings, culminating in suspension
and then dismissal) is defined in the contract, and the School
Department has no control over it.
Under the present system, an improvement in driver performance
depends almost entirely on the contractor, which has yet to
demonstrate an effective commitment to higher standards.
2. School Bus Safety
The School Department has acknowledged that there are persistent,
significant problems with safety and discipline on its school
buses, and has made a commitment to "some type of bus safety
program in the Boston Public Schools." The elements of this
program have not yet been clarified; the program will include
some use of bus monitors.
3. MBTA vs. School Buses
There are significant problems associated with revising the
allocation of MBTA and school buses among Boston students. The
pressure to favor political constituencies could lead to
overlooking equity considerations. The School Department's
reluctance to undertake such a revision should be overcome in the
interest of effective and efficient service.
There appear to be serious liabilities related to MBTA
assignrnents. For example, a number of Boston schools assign
strict penalties for tardiness. Presumably, school bus students
are protected because school officials take note of late arrivals
and inform teachers, while students using the MBTA are unable to
verify the reason for their tardiness.
The monitors again analyzed all complaints filed with and
forwarded to the Transportation Unit. Three elements of the
complaints were analyzed: type of complaint, contractor's
response and adequacy of response.
Type of Complaint
The monitors examined 453 complaints during this monitoring
period. "No shows" represented, as they did last fall, almost two
thirds of all complaints. The percentage of complaints addressing
safety matters has decreased since last fall (from 18% to 6% of
the total). However, the percentage of complaints concerning
buses arriving early at stops or schools has increased
significantly, and there has been a slight increase in the
complaints alleging that drivers made unauthorized stops or
transported unauthorized passengers.
The monitors also examined the contractor's response to the
complaints. Unfortunately, the contractor does not employ
systematic categories when responding to complaints. Only
complaints that had been responded to by the contractor were
allegation denied by
late (driver, etc.)
driver says no students
Adequacy of Response
The complaint form currently used by Boston does not require the
contractor to indicate whether the complaint was well founded or
whether it was resolved. In many cases, it is impossible to see a
connection between the complaint and the contractor's response.
The monitors developed several categories that address adequacy of
First, 'acceptable': The contractor resolved the problem, for
example, by sending a backup bus to replace a bus with mechanical
Second, 'uncertain': The contractor took some step (for example,
issuing a verbal warning to the driver), but it is impossible to
tell whether the transportation problem was resolved (was a backup
bus sent, for example, to replace a driver who was late to work).
Third, 'unacceptable': response does not address complaint. Most
complaints falling into this category contained complaints such as
"no show" and a response such as "4U7 broke down and SBl was a
Fourth, 'unacceptable': contradiction between complaint and
response. For example, a complaint stated "driver arriving at
stop too early — have been arriving at school
being at the stop at 8:55 (child not being
contractor responded, "no student was at that
at 8:55 instead of
picked up)." The
stop said a standby
Adequacy of Response
Unacceptable, response does
Allegations of Child/Sexual Abuse
Two complaints received by the School Department, but not yet
responsed to by the contractor, are sufficiently serious to
warrant special mention: they both concern potential sexual abuse
of children on schoolbuses.
The first complaint states, "[son] came home today and told his
mother that [the driver] is kissing and touching the girls on the
bus. Happened before. [A second parent] called with the same
complaint." The second states, "driver of this bus is using
abusive language to the girls. Complaint is he calls them
prostitutes and 4-letter words." The first allegation was written
up as an "incident report" as well as a complaint. In neither
case does the Department have a contractor response.
Since these two incidents may fall under the provision of the
mandated reporter section of the Child Abuse Law (Section 51a of
Chapter 119 of the Massachusetts General Laws), it is important
that the School Department review its procedures for responding to
and referring complaints alleging sexual and other forms of child
1. Boston should develop and implement a complaint management
identify trouble spots, and
identify and follow up inadequate responses from the
2. The Transportation Unit should revise its complaint log forms
to require the contractor to:
identify by name the driver involved in the alleged
identify the bus run by name
indicate whether substantiated infractions involved a
recent change in route assignment and/or
Develop a standardized list of complaints and responses
on the log, for better accounting and accountability.
3. Boston should continue to press the bus contractor to make
complaint investigation and management a full-time staff
responsibility with significant authority.
4. Boston should undertake, in conjunction with parents, a study
to determine what, if any, liabilities are associated with
MBTA and school bus transportation and recommend solutions.
5. Boston should ensure that bus drivers receive training in the
laws that define and prohibit child abuse and sexual
harassment. It should revise its complaint procedures to
ensure that educational administrators and other mandated
reporters comply with Section 51a of Chapter 119 of the
Massachusetts General Laws ("child abuse law").
6. Boston should implement a plan for student safety through
selective use of well-trained monitors, with clearly-stated
responsibilities and supervision, and through the use of
mobile security teams as needed.
Construction, renovation and closing of school facilities shall
occur according to the standards contained in the interlocutory
Order of June 21, 1974; the Plan of May 10, 1975, pages 6-7; the
Memoranda and Orders of May 6, 1977, pages 37-40; August 15, 1979;
March 21, 1980; April 2, 1980; and the Order on Joint Defendants'
Motion for Adoption, May 11, 1981.
The Director of School Building Assistance has conducted the
reviews, assisted by the Division's Regional Center staff, through
meetings with Boston staff in the Department of Implementation,
the Office of the Deputy Superintendent for School Operations, and
the City of Boston Public Facilities Department.
1. To determine whether all school closing measures ordered by
the Court have been fully complied with.
Compliance reported in July 1983 Monitoring Report.
2. To review all proposed construction, renovation, and other
school facility measures for consistency with desegregation
and other requirements of the Court.
In Report No. 2, monitors reported approval of renovation plans
for Dorchester High as of June 28, 1983. It was also reported
that plans for renovation of Jeremiah Burke High were expected to
be approved at the January 1984 Board Meeting. Have the
renovation plans for the Burke and Dorchester High Schools
outlined by Superintendent Spillane in a submission to the Court
in May 1982 progressed as expeditiously as possible?
A recent site visit by the monitors verified that the Dorchester
High School renovation project is approximately 50% completed with
sub-stantial completion scheduled for September 1984.
The Burke High School renovation project was also approved by the
Board at the January 24, 1984 meeting. However, the project has
been seriously delayed due to complications encountered during
bidding. The bids were substantially higher than the anticipated
construction costs. The Boston Public Facilities Department is
presently seeking authorization for increased funding in order to
proceed with the agreed upon scope of work. Completion of the
work is scheduled for one (1) year from the date of contract
In Report No. 2, it was found that joint long-range facilities
planning had not commenced. What progress has been made to
develop the required long-range facilities plan?
Other than the Burke and Dorchester renovations, no formal
proposals for construction, renovation, or other school facility
measures have been received as of May 14, 1984. However, meetings
have been encouraging and are the first steps in the development
process. On Hay 3, an initial segment of a plan containing
enrollment projections, capacities, and a list of schools which
the Boston School Committee has determined will remain open over
the foreseeable future was received.
Boston has recently submitted educational specifications for a new
Boston Latin School/Latin Academy building, and other renovations
are planned. The State Board has not been involved in any of the
planning on this project. This project, like all others, must
become a part of Boston's long-range facilities planning. This
planning process should include the city of Boston, the School
Department as well, as the Department of Education. Under current
orders, projects beyond Burke and Dorchester must await
development and approval of a complete secondary school facilities
plan, a component of the Court-Ordered Unified Facilities Plan.
To review the placement or proposed placement of any portable
unit, or the rental of any space for instructional purposes,
for consistency with the desegregation and other requirements
of the Court.
Monitors have been informed of no plans for the rental of space
for instructional purposes.
To determine the extent of compliance with outstanding orders
with respect to development of a Unified Plan, including a
schedule of further school closings, a schedule of
construction, renovation, replacements, as well as repair and
refurbishing of all facilities, and a plan for secondary
school utilization, in accordance with the provisions of the
Manual for District Planning Activities and other
requirements of the Court.
Report No. 2 stated that "joint planners" had not met for the
purpose of developing a long-range facilities plan. Have
discussions occurred among the "joint planners" about a long-range
secondary school facilities plans as a necessary part of the
Unified Facilities Plan? What progress has been made toward
determining priorities for the available resources and for
Since the last report, representatives of the Boston Public
Schools, City of Boston Public Facilities Department, and
representatives of the State Board of Education have met twice to
begin to develop a long-range facilities plan on which individual
school construction, renovation, or improvement projects may be
based. Volume II of this report contains summaries and reports
related to those meetings.
The first of the two meetings occurred on April 24, 1^84, and was
convened by a representative of the Mayor's Office. At this
meeting a proposed outline for the contents of the facilities plan
was discussed. (648-649)
On May 3, 1984, a second meeting was held during which
representatives of the Boston Public Schools and the Public
Facilities Department advised the monitors that the Boston School
Committee had voted approval of a list of schools to be retained
in the system on a long-range basis, some of which would be the
subject of enlargement, renovation, or improvement projects. A
list of proposed projects keyed to the schools identified in the
list, together with cost estimates, is to be submitted to the
It has also been determined that funding for these proposals will
be derived from City Council orders, and not from Boston school
maintenance funds, which will be used for day-to-day repair and
The school department, city and state should continue joint
development of an educationally and financially sound long-range
SAFETY AND SECURITY
School Safety and Security shall be provided according to the
standards contained in the following order:
Further Order Concerning Security September 5, 1975 (this order
replaces Order or Motion for Relief Concerning Security,
December 4, 1974)
On-site monitoring was conducted in 14 schools: English High,
Charlestown High, South Boston High, Jamaica Plain High, McKinley,
New Horizons (King Middle), The Log School (Dist. V), Cleveland
Middle, Mary Curley Middle, Gavin Middle, Edwards Middle and
Michelangelo Middle, Lewenberg Middle and McKay Elementary.
Conversations were held with Deputy Superintendent Peterkin and
safety Department staff. In addition the following reports were
reviewed: Safe Schools Commission Report, Deputy Superintendent
Peterkin's response to the Safe Schools Commission Report, School
Incident Reports for November 1983 through March 1984.
1. To review monthly reports on school incidents with special
attention to those perceived as racial in nature.
Several schools were identified in Report No. 1 as having sporadic
but serious racial violence (Charlestown and Hyde Park) and others
were cited for high incidence of violence (English, Hyde Park,
Brighton, Thompson). After a year of monitoring, has this
situation changed and have other schools surfaced in need of major
improvements in safety and security? VJhat is Boston doing to
develop and implement a citywide plan for improving safety and
security? How are the increasing reports of weapons in schools
being dealt with by Boston? What is Boston doing to identify
causes for safety problems and provide solutions?
Despite considerable efforts to improve safety and discipline,
English High remains the most troubled school in the system with
160 (crimes against persons and safety' related) incidents reported
for a five month period (November 1983 - March 1984). Plans have
recently been approved by the School Committee to reorganize that
school into 4 distinct alternative programs: The Fenway School,
9th grade cluster. Magnet Arts, and a traditional high school
program. It is expected that by compartmentalizing the school and
by expanding mastery learning educational approaches, the school
will become both more manageable and more successful in
educationally engaging students.
As indicated in Report No. 2, of the other schools originally
cited, most have shown improvements. Hyde Park High, however,
despite its excellent business partnerships and work-study
programs, still has a high number of violent incidents(mostly
fighting and assaults) - 67 for five months (November 1983 -
On a pro-rated basis, the overall number of incidents for this
cycle when compared to last year (January 1983 - April 1983),
appears to have declined. Reported racial incidents have
increased both in actual numbers and in percentage, while reported
school bus incidents have declined (see section on school bus
REPORT NO. 1 REPORT NO. 3
Jan. - April 1983 (4 mos.) Nov. 1983 - March 1984 (5 mos.)
Racial = 34 (4.7%) Racial = 64 (8.1%)
School Bus = 50 (7.9%) School Bus = 37 (4.8%)
Total = 718 Total = 774
(4/5 of 774 = 619)
English High (11 racial incidents), Hyde Park High (7 racial
incidents), Cleveland Middle (6 racial incidents) and Mary Curley
Middle (6 racial incidents) lead the field for numbers of racial
incidents reported during this monitoring cycle. While the
number of racial incidents has increased the pattern of those
incidents has not changed; most occur sporadically, involve racial
slurs, physical assaults or fighting, and are limited to two or
three individuals. The majority of these incidents occur between
Blacks and Whites, although more incidents between Blacks and
Hispanics or Asians or between Whites and Hispanics or Asians are
being reported. Patterns of self-imposed social separation by
race and ethnicity are characteristic of most high schools and
some middle schools. Patterns of sporadic racial harassment
persist at certain schools (English High, Cleveland Middle).
Plan for Citywide Improvement of Safety and Security
Deputy Superintendent Peterkin's written response to the Safe
Schools Commission's Report constitutes a blueprint for improved
safety and security citywide. Components of this blueprint are:
- shortening and simplifying the Code of Discipline
- expansion of alternatives to suspensions
- development of 2 school climate/school discipline teams to
circulate among troubled schools ($140,000 has been
budgeted for these teams)
- "Oversight Committees" in each district and in the central
office to review student discipline policies and specific
- an improved comprehensive record-keeping system on safety
and disci pi ine
- a strengthened weapons policy
- specific security plans for each school
- improved bus safety procedures
This plan is still in a formative stage, and has not been
officially approved by the School Committee in its entirety. Only
portions of alternative education expansion, bus monitors for some
school bus runs, and the school climate/discipline teams appear to
have been budgeted for 1984-85.
Deputy Superintendent Peterkin has proposed a new policy on
weapons for the system. Students using "dangerous weapons" (the
scope of which still must be defined) in the commission of violent
acts would be recommended for expulsion. Students found in
posession of weapons would receive long-term suspensions, and a
second apprehension for weapons posession would result in a
recommendation for expulsion.
In Report No. 2 monitors recommended a stronger weapons policy.
The fact that weapons posession is now involved in 30% of reported
incidents, an increase of 4% over Report No. 2 findings, supports
the argument that a stronger policy, such as has been proposed, is
In Report No. 2 monitors reported that Boston had done little to
remedy safety and security problems on school buses. It was also
reported that, according to a Safe Schools Commission survey,
school buses are seen by students as being among the least safe
places in their school environment. What steps is Boston taking
to resolve safety problems on school buses and to provide a more
secure environment for students?
Boston now appears committed to changes in safety procedures used
on school buses. Among these proposed changes are:
- the placement of monitors on troubled bus runs at
elementary and middle schools. These monitors would be
paid out of a specific fund assigned to each district (or
school). As a first choice, monitors would be selected
from among staff already at schools in need.
- required safety training for bus drivers and regular
reinforcement of specific school rules pertaining to bus
safety for all students
- increased responsibilities for school administrators to
oversee school bus safety and discipline
- changes in the discipline code to specify circumstances
under which unruly students can be removed (permanently or
temporarily) from school bus services.
The Citywide Parents Council recommends the placement of bus
monitors on ^21 school buses for the 1984-85 school year, with a
provision for the elimination of monitors on those runs which
prove to have no problems. Monitors view the School Department's
plan for the placement of monitors as more practical and cost-
effective at this time.
Specific plans have not been finalized but a budget ((P $640,000)
for bus monitors has been approved by the School Committee.
Report No. 2 described Boston's development and expansion of
alternative programs to reduce certain safety and discipline
problems by better serving the needs of disruptive and non-
achieving students (Fenway School, Boston Prep, New Horizons).
Monitors also reported that most of these alternatives were
reluctant to accept 'hard-core' habitually offending students,
leaving special needs placement schools such as the McKinley and
Tileston as the only options for such students. What further
steps are being taken to develop and expand alternative
programs? How is the McKinley serving the needs of disruptive
students evaluated under Chapter 766 with multiple problems?
Boston continues to develop plans to expand its alternative
education offerings for the 1984-85 school year through:
- the expansion of the Fenway School (English High) from 120
to 180-20U students
- the creation of 3 additional alternative programs at
Engl ish High School
- the expansion of New Horizons (King Middle School) from
100 to 170 students
- the expansion of the Re-Cap program from 8 middle schools
- the creation of a $100,000 fund to provide seed money for
middle schools proposing alternative programs. (This has
neither officially received school committee approval nor
It is the intent of alternative education planners to avoid the
complete segregation of disruptive and multiple-offending students
by providing alternative programs and schools which appeal to a
variety of students. The planners hope that eventually each
district will have one alternative program to handle district-wide
referrals of disruptive students and other students desiring a
different educational approach. Deputy Superintendent Peterkin
asserts that disruptive students (other than those who are
evaluated under Chapter 766 and placed in the McKinley, the
Tileston, a LAB program, or a private school) will be
appropriately served in one of the expanding alternative programs,
and that the new Human Services Collaborative will provide
additional services to both alternative and regular school
The McKinley School
The McKinley is a 502.4 (i) special needs school for students
with serious psychological and behavioral problems. The school
has a highly structured behavior management system, is 60% Black
and 38% White; has a 3:1 studentrstaff ratio, and an 80% success
rate as measured by students who complete graduation
requirements. It serves 250 students in its middle, high, and
technical school components, and will include an elementary
component in the 1984-85 school year. Much of the staff has been
carefully screened and all are thoroughly indoctrinated in non-
confrontational approaches to discipline while still holding
students accountable for their behavior. According to the
Headmaster, both the number of students being referred to this
program and the severtiy of the problems incoming students bring
are growing, particularly at the middle school level. Earlier
intervention strategies are sorely needed, which explains the
expansion of the school to include an elementary component.
Approximately 75% of Chapter 766 evaluated students referred,
through a three-tiered review process (sending school, central
office, McKinley) are actually accepted. The headmaster expressed
a need for the development of other non-special needs options, to
serve some of the students now referred to the McKinley.
In Report No. 2 monitors reported on the persistence of problems
in the consistent and complete reporting of incidents required by
the Safety Procedural Manual , despite Safety Department efforts to
cross-check incidents reported. It was also reported that in some
schools many students and staff failed to cooperate in reporting
incidents, due to fear, apathy, or disillusionment with the poor
follow-up accorded many incidents reported. The Safe Schools
Commission Report cited major discrepencies between the rates of
school offenses reported by students and staff in its survey of
school offenses, and the frequency with which those same offenses
appear in incident reports and suspension data. This varies
considerably from school to school. What additional steps has
Boston taken to insure completeness and consistency in the
reporting of school incidents and greater reliability of the
The major problems preventing complete and consistent incident
reporting rest on unresolved problems in convincing:
- administrators that complete and consistent reporting will
not be viewed as a direct assessment of their building
- students and staff that they will not be threatened or
harmed for reporting incidents, and that appropriate
disciplinary and other actions will follow from their
report. Students and staff must also be convinced that
existing disciplinary options will have a preventative
effect on perpetrators of school offenses.
The Safety Department has initiated an improved method of keeping
track of school incidents, suspensions, and repeat suspensions on
the computer, enabling them to compare these reports with each
other and against other direct sources of information provided by
Boston security staff. The Deputy Superintendent has already
begun writing requests for responses from headmasters of schools
in which discrepencies between various reporting procedures have
2. To confirm the adequacy of arrangments for dealing with race-
related incidents, including, for example, the existence of
an emergency reporting and action plan for school and law
Compliance stated in Report No. 1, no change.
3. To confirm that the student discipline code and its
implementation deal adequately with racial slurs and other
actions tending to create race-related incidents.
As stated in Report No. 1 (Vol. II), 7.7 of the Code of Discipline
describes the use of racial slurs for the purpose of inciting
violence as a suspendable offense.
4. To review quarterly reports on deployment of law enforcement
personnel specifically ordered for South Boston Schools.
There have been no significant changes in deployment patterns of
Boston School Police.
5. To confirm that plans exist to close any school in the event
that safety cannot be assured (as the Court specifically
ordered in 1974 for South Boston High).
Compliance stated in Report No. 1.
Boston should be commended for the expansion of its successful
alternative education offerings. Boston should also be commended
for taking some initial steps to develop a systemwide safety
improvement plan and specifically a plan for improving school bus
1. finalize plans, fund and implement systemwide improvement
of safety and security;
2. finalize plans, fund, and implement school bus safety
3. continue to expand its alternative education options for
disruptive and non-achieving students so that all districts
4. continue to expand early intervention strategies for
students showing signs of maladaptive and disruptive
5. continue to resolve issues preventing complete and
consistent reporting of school incidents.
Student discipline shall be enforced according to the standards
contained in the Order Approving Addition to Code of Discipline,
January 9, 1975.
Suspension statistics for the first semester of the school year
1983-1984 were analyzed and compared with suspension statistics of
the school year 1982-1983 to determine the progress made by
schools previously cited for high and/or racially disproportionate
suspension rates, and to identify any other schools with these
suspension rates that were not previously cited. Thirteen schools
that had high and/or racially disproportionate suspension rates
were monitored on site. Visits to four schools - Charlestown
High, Boston Latin, English High and Edwards Middle - were follow-
up visits to ascertain what success, if any, new programs have had
on improving discipline problems within each school. Nine schools
were visited for the first time - East Boston High, Mario Umana
Harbor School, Jamaica Plain High, Edwards Middle, Gavin Middle,
Michelangelo Middle, Curley Middle, Roosevelt Middle, Eliot
Elementary and McKay Elementary. Monitors interviewed
administrators, teachers and some students to determine causes of
suspension as well as to identify existing successful
alternatives. In addition, Boston's response to the student
discipline section of the second monitoring report was reviewed.
1. To review, on a semi-annual basis, a report of suspensions
and expulsions at each school, with the nature of the
offense, the grade, race and sex of the students affected,
and the length of time for each suspension.
Suspension statistics for all schools for the 1982-1983
school year were analyzed in the February 1984 report to identify
those schools that had high and racially disproportionate
suspension rates, as well as those schools that had predicted
racially proportionate suspension rates. Which Boston Public
Schools in the first semester of 1983-84 have:
significant disproportionate suspension by race?
high suspension rates as compared to other Boston schools?
low suspension rates as compared to other Boston schools?
Overall, when comparing the first semester of 1983-84 to the first
semester of 1982-83, Boston was able to reduce its suspensions by
849, possibly indicating increased efforts system-wide to use
suspension only as a last resort and to increase use of
alternatives to suspension. This is a substantial improvement.
However, there is still a significant number of schools that have
high and/or racially disproportionate suspension rates.
At the high school level, Charlestown High continued to have the
highest suspension rate, although its suspension rate has been
significantly reduced to about 40% of last year's rate. English
High, which last year had the second highest suspension rate, has
also considerably lowered its rate, while Brighton High and
Jamaica Plain High have notably increased their suspension rates.
Boston Latin School continued to suspend Black students at 2 1/2
times the expected rate but there were only 18 suspensions the
entire first semester. Charlestown, Brighton and East Boston High
Schools continued to suspend Black students at a
disproportionately high rate. Also, the suspension rate for Black
students at Boston Technical High significantly increased to be
disproportionately high. Of those schools that had
disproportionate suspension rates for Black students last year,
only the Umana High School had a suspension rate that dropped.
Suspensions for White students at Jamaica Plain and Burke High
Schools continued to be disproportionately low. The rate of
suspension for White students at Brighton, Charlestown and Boston
Technical High Schools was significantly low, while Hyde Park,
Dorchester, Boston and Copley Square High Schools did not suspend
any White students. The suspension rates for White students at
Madison Park High and the Umana School rose to be more
proportionate, while suspensions for White students at West
Roxbury High rose to be disproportionately high. Finally, Burke
High suspended Hispanic students at twice the expected rate.
At the middle school level, the Edwards Middle, which had the
highest suspension rate in 1982-1983, reduced its suspensions to
1/4 of last year's rate. The Mackey, Cheverus, Timilty and Curley
The expected rate is arrived at by dividing the percent of
suspensions for a particular racial group by the percent of
students of that racial group in the school. 1.00 would indicate
that students of a particular racial group are suspended at
exactly the rate that their proportion of total enrollment would
predict, while 2.00 would indicate suspensions at double the
expected rate, and .5, at half the expected rate.
Middle Schools all dramatically increased their suspension rates,
and the Roosevelt Middle continued to have a high suspension
rate. The Michelangelo and Gavin Middle Schools significantly
reduced their previously high suspension rates. All schools cited
last year for suspending Black students at a disproportionately
high rate (Roosevelt, Michelangelo, Gavin and Thompson Middle
Schools) dropped to more proportionate suspension rates, while the
Edison, Irving and Edwards Middle Schools significantly increased
their suspension rates for Black students.
At the elementary school level, the McKay and Eliot Elementary
Schools continued to have high suspension rates, while the
Beethoven and Manning Elementary Schools increases merited on-site
monitoring. Black students at the Tobin, Manning, Eliot and
Prescott Elementary Schools were suspended at more than twice the
Future statistical analysis will include examining suspension
records of those schools that employ in-school suspension
2. To monitor on site, if necessary, schools in which there are
apparent patterns of inequitable application of the Code of
Ten schools were monitored on-site during the fall monitoring
period to identify school factors that may contribute to high and
racially disproportionate suspension rates. Identified factors
included the small numbers of Black and Hispanic administrators at
some schools, conf rontati ve approaches to behavior management by
some teachers, lack of adequate support services and alternatives
to suspension for students who are discipline problems, a low
level of parental involvement, lack of adequate classroom
materials, and most importantly, a small group of students in each
school who continually disrupt the educational environment. What
steps has Boston taken to identify solutions for these problems?
What additional school factors contribute to the suspension rates
Some progress has been made in addressing underlying causes of
discipline problems. All schools visited by the monitor during
this monitoring period had new headmasters or assistant
headmasters appointed to the school in the last two years, a
significant number of whom are Black or Hispanic. Through
increased focus on student discipline policies, school climate and
basic skills development, the majority of these administrators
have helped to reduce student discipline problems. However, the
inadequate number of Black and Hispanic regular education teachers
at the Umana School and the lack of Black or Hispanic
administrators at the Roosevelt Middle are thought to contribute
to student discipline problems for some Black and Hispanic
students at those schools. (766)
The Office of School Operations also has proposed several changes
for next school year that may have a positive impact on student
discipline. Two teams of Boston teachers proficient in "Positive
Approaches to Discipline and Reality Therapy" will be created and
these teams will establish residency in an estimated 40 to 50
schools throughout the year to help devlop a plan for the
improvement of student discipline and to teach intervention
techniques. A general in-service for all schools on non-
confrontation approaches to student discipline is planned.
Purchase of textbooks and materials has been inserted into next
year's budget to more adequately address academic needs which are
often related to discipline problems. Deputy Superintendent
Lancaster is developing remediation opportunities for students to
complement next year's new promotional policy and graduation
requirements, althoough administrators expressed fears that these
new requirements will still "glut" the 9th grade (which is already
approximately 25% repeaters in each school) with additional
repeating students and increase student discipline problems. The
Boston Human Service Collaborative was formed this year and has
targeted 17 schools in which to provide a wide range of
coordinated academic and social services next year.
Progress in increasing parental support in student discipline
efforts was noted by the Edwards Middle, Curley Middle, Gavin
Middle and Eliot Elementary, although low levels of parental
involvement continued to be cited by many other school
administrators as an obstacle to resolving student discipline
problems. Developing effective parent outreach programs should
continue to be a focus at the high school level.
Most importantly, suspension statistics for all schools visited
supported the belief expressed by all administrators that, in each
school, there was a small number of students who were habitual
offenders of school rules and habitual non-attenders, and whom,
given the limited resources and support services available, the
schools cannot serve. Two notable examples are Charlestown Hiyh,
where 33 students accounted for 50% of the total suspensions, and
McKay Elementary, where 5 students accounted for 49% of the
Three new alternative programs have been established in the past 2
years -- Fenway School (English High), Boston Prep and New
Horizons Academy (King Middle) — that serve a wide range of
students, including habitual non-attenders and habitual offenders
of school rules, in an intimate, supportive learning environment
while providing intensive basic skills and some college
preparatory skills. These schools have already demonstrated some
success in motivating "marginal" students to achieve success in
school. Next year, English High will be reorganized into 4
schools based upon the school -within-school concept, increasing
alternative program options on the secondary level. In addition,
the Department of School Operations has indicated that it will
focus next year on creating alternative school programs on the
middle school level .
This past year, the Department of School Operations has worked
to systematize discipline procedures in all schools, including
accuracy in reporting suspensions, development of school-based
rules and encouraging use of alternatives to suspension. There
continued to be, however, widespread inconsistencies by school
administrators in the administering of the Code of Discipline, and
possible inaccurate reporting of suspensions by some schools. Is
the Code of Discipline being consistently enforced, especially
regarding suspension rates and alternatives to suspensions?
Schools that have in the past suspended hiyh numbers of students,
like Charlestown High and Edwards Middle, have lowered their
suspensions and increased use of alternatives to suspension.
However, administrators at some schools, most notably Charlestown
High, argue that the pressure to lower their suspension rates,
coupled with the lack of alternative school placements, has
inhibited their efforts to establish an orderly and controlled
environment. This emphasizes the need for school administrators
to be provided with adequate resources to develop alternatives to
suspension and improved educational programs.
Policy changes by the Department of School Operations have helped
improve consistency in the enforcement of the Code of Discipline.
The Code is currently being revised into a shorter and more
understandable version. School-based rules may be reviewed in the
spring (instead of in the fall) to be distributed with the Code at
the beginning of the school year. Headmasters have been informed
that all suspensions must be recorded and schools cannot send
students home to "cool-off" without being suspended. A Review
Committee to review discipline policies and school climate is
being proposed for each school; and a proposed Oversight Committee
in each district and at the city-wide level will monitor
consistency in the application of school rules.
Most importantly, Boston, in a draft response to the Safe Schools
Commission Report , has proposed several modifications to Boston s
overall safety and security plan (see Volume II student discipline
report). Specific proposals already mentioned in this report —
the behavior management teams, Boston Human Services
Collaborative, alternative schools development plan, revision of
the Code of Discipline, Review Committees in each school and
Oversight Committees in each district - are key components of
this response. The response, if enacted and supported with proper
funding, could be instrumental in establishing constructive and
uniform city-wide discipline policies. However, it must be noted
that these proposals are still in a formative stage and have not
yet been assured proper funding for next year. Future monitoring
will examine the progress of approval and implementation of this
blueprint for improved safety and disicipline.
Of those schools identified in the first 2 monitoring reports
disproportionate suspensions by race, what steps is Boston taking
to identify causes for these problems and identify solutions? Can
the success of any of these solutions be documented? What
alternatives could identified schools employ?
Of the 13 schools visited, Edwards Middle, Curley Middle, Gavin
Middle and Eliot Elementary had made the most significant progress
in resolving discipline problems. All 4 schools had established a
structured discipline process that required a high level of
teacher participation and parent involvement. They developed
alternatives to suspension (e.g., academic and counseling support
services, in-house suspension programs) and improved their
educational programs, with special emphasis on basic skills
curriculum. Edwards Middle created a Student Planning Center (in-
school suspension program), the Gavin Middle a model comprehensive
support services program, and the Eliot Elementary and Curley
Middle reorganized their curricula to better address basic skills
needs. New building administrators in all 4 schools have been
instrumental in these changes. (773-779)
English High's reorganization next year should provide a more
manageable school environment, a sense of programmatic identity
for students and a more structured curriculum. Charlestown High
has implemented several innovative programs to address students'
academic and counseling needs (Teacher Advisory Program, BU
counseling interns), but should also consider the creation of an
in-school suspension program or school-within a school program,
and use of learning and classroom management strategies employed
at Boston Prep. Boston Latin School Assistant Headmaster Leonard
has improved the administration of discipline (quicker referral
process, continuous presence in the halls), although the school
should continue to address the disportionate suspensions ofBlack
students. East Boston High has a highly structured discipline
program, but this school and the Umana School need to develop
alternative support services for those Black students reluctant to
use agencies in East Boston. The Umana school has improved
discipline through staff stability and an additional security
officer, but needs to reduces the amount of grafitti on the
walls. Jamaica Plain High has developed a wide range of support
services and alternatives to suspension (teen parenting program,
remedial tutoring programs and an In-School Suspension Program),
and coupled with a stable staff, these programs will hopefully
lower its high and racially disproportionate suspension rates.
The Michelangelo Middle, while strengthening its academic program,
needs to develop additional alternatives to suspension (for
example, in-house suspension program) and address the reluctance
of Black parents to attend parent conferences at the school. The
Roosevelt Middle Headmaster last year replaced 5 teachers who were
excessively absent (a total of 341 school days) and the resulting
staff stability has helped to improve student discipline; however,
a lack of a uniform discipline policy, poor communication between
administrators, and building disrepair have contributed to
continuing school climate and school discipline problems. And the
McKay Elementary School needs help to address discipline issues
more systematically and employ additional alternatives to
The Department of School Operations should be commended for their
continuing efforts to systematize discipline procedures, improve
consistency in the adherence to the Code of Discipline, encourage
the creation of alternatives to suspension, and lower suspension
rates systemwide. Director of Alternative Programs Smith is also
to be commended for his continuing efforts to create alternative
programs for all students, and especially for his efforts in the
reorganization of English High School.
Finally, the new administrators at Edwards Middle, Curley Middle,
Gavin Middle, Eliot Elementary, Boston Latin and Charlestown High
should be commended for improving student discipline at those
In addition to the following recommendations, all proposed plans
detailed in this report will be monitored in the next monitoring
A. Black and Hispanic administrators and teachers should
continue to be appointed where needed. Specifically,
there is a need for a Black or Hispanic administrator at
Roosevelt Middle School and Black and Hispanic teachers
at the Umana School .
B. Boston should continue to provide resources to schools
to develop support services and other alternatives to
suspension. Specifically, the creation of a school-
within-a-school alternative program or an in-school
suspension program at Charlestown High should be
considered. Continued support for the Boston Human
Services Collaborative should be provided.
C. Alternative programs for students who are not succeeding
in regular school programs, specifically at the middle
school level, should continue to be created.
D. Parent outreach strategies centered around student
discipline issues should be intensified. These efforts
should be targeted at the high school level and
developed in collaboration with the Citywide Parents
E. Means to accelerate the referral process for both
alternative program and special education placements
should be explored.
Institutional Pairings shall continue according to the standards
contained in pages 50 through 58 of the Student Desegregation Plan
of May 10, 1975.
Monitoring has consisted of meetings with university and college
coordinators, representatives of the cultural institutions, and
staff of the Tri-Lateral Council. In addition, all of the Chapter
636 funding proposals, which embody the college, university, and
cultural institution contracts, have been reviewed by Department
1. To determine whether the institutional pairings
identified in orders of continuing validity are
Are the Boston Public Schools continuing to make a
positive effort to reach mutually agreeable
contractual arrangements with the universities,
colleges, businesses, and cultural institutions?
Report #1: The School Department had mutually agreeable
contractual arrangements with all of the institutions specified in
the court order who chose to enter into such agreements.
Report #2: No change.
The institutional pairings all continue to operate through mutual
contractural agreements between the institutions involved and the
School Department. The cultural and university pairings are
funded with state funds through Chapter 636; proposals for these
pairings have been reviewed by Department staff. Many of the
colleges and universities are currently involved with the School
Department in planning some changes in programs and increased
involvement for next year.
PARENT AND STUDENT ORGANIZATIONS
Court-ordered parent and student organizations shall operate
according to the standards contained in the memoranda and Orders
of October 4, 1974; August 24 and November 8, 1976; September 1,
1977; September 15, 1978; May 5, 1980; July 20, 1982; and August
25, 1982; and the Desegregation Plan of May 10, 1975, pages 86-
100; and the Amalgamation Plan.
Information regarding the CPC (Citywide Parent Council) and SPC
(School Parent Councils) was gathered through attendance at
council meetings; review of Council minutes; discussion with the
Executive Director and the staff of the Council; Boston officials;
and review of Chapter 636 Proposal Applications.
Circulars were reviewed for uniform student council election
procedures. The elections of student councils and representatives
to school parent councils were reviewed. The monitor attended 6
training sessions for Charlestown High students and faculty on the
implementation of a Communication Board in that school. Also, the
monitor received a report on implementation of Communication
Boards in all high schools.
To determine whether Parent Councils are monitoring matters
which are apt to facilitate or hinder the desegregation
process in particular schools, districts and/or citywide.
For instance, are they monitoring the implementation of Court
orders for special desegregation measures at some schools,
repair and construction of facilities, vocational and
occupational education programs, and support of participation
by college, business, and cultural pairings?
Last year the CPC was not able to monitor the desegregation
CPC has established subcommittees to overview the mnonitoring in
each area. What is the status of the newly established
subcommittees, which are responsible for monitoring in specific
areas? What assistance are these subcommittees receiving from
various community agencies? Is the desegregation process in areas
not monitored by the CPC last year, such as vocational and
occupational education and university, cultural and business
pairings being monitored this year? How is Boston responding to
the CPC's monitoring efforts?
The Desegregation Monitoring Committee of the CPC has expanded its
activities to include areas which were not monitored last year.
However, the committee's plan to establish subcommittees to be
responsible for the monitoring of each area of desegregation has
been modified. The energy which is required to implement the
subcommittee structure is being used to support parent involvement
in the monitoring process on the local school level instead.
Also, the plan to have various community agencies assist in the
monitoring has been delayed indefinitely. The parent councils are
now monitoring the desegregation process in all of the required
areas. However, their monitoring efforts are generally
fragmented more thorough in some areas than in others. Parent
Councils' monitoring in all areas is strongly connected to
parents' efforts to advocate for student and parent rights.
Because the Parent Councils are strong advocates for student and
parent rights, according to the CPC, the school department often
views their monitoring efforts as antagonistic. Further, the CPC
reports that Boston is slow to respond to requests for assistance
in the Parent Councils' monitoring efforts, and in several
instances has tried to hinder the monitoring process.
On the other hand, Boston officials report that the CPC's
priorities are confused. They are not able to recruit parents for
involvement in the SPCs because much of the CPC's time is spent
bickering internally and petulantly attacking the school
department. Boston officials question the legitimacy of the CPC's
monitoring findings because of the low level of parent involvement
in the monitoring process as well as in the overall CPC-SPC
Special Assistant Robert Hayden, the superintendent's liaison to
the CPC, reports that the CPC has not availed itself of his offers
to provide assistance in working with Boston. He attends the
monthly CPC meetings, and responds to all requests for information
in writing. Otherwise he reports that the CPC's contact with the
school department has been limited. He has made several attempts
to open new channels for parent involvement in Boston. Among
these, he tried to initiate monthly meetings with the 4 co-
chai members, and he tried to involve parents in the "long-range"
Boston planning. The CPC did not respond.
To determine whether parents are responsible for planning and
investigating matters which are apt to facilitate or hinder
the promotion of racial harmony at their school. Also
whether Boston is supporting parents by providing access to
school records as well as supporting their efforts to send
out pamphlets and newsletters, visit schools, propose
modification of student programs, and receive reasonable
operating expenses from the individual schools.
It was recommended in Report No. 2, that the CPC
and local SPCs (with the support of the school department) become
more actively and directly involved in Chapter 636 proposal
development and program implementation as an appropriate means for
parents to assume the responsibility for planning and promoting
matters which are apt to facilitate racial harmony in schools.
Are parents becoming more actively and directly involved in
Chapter 636 proposal development and program implementation?
It was recommended in the last Monitoring Report that the CPC and
local SPCs (with the support of the school department) become more
actively and directly involved in Chapter 636 proposal development
and program implementation, as an appropriate means for parents to
assume the responsibility for planning and promoting matters which
are apt to facilitate racial harmony in schools. Accordingly, The
Bureau of School Programs mandated that each Boston school
district earmark 1% of its Chapter 636 allocation for parent
participation. Although each district's proposal application
reflects the Bureau's requirements, overall, the activities
prescribed for parent participation are superficial, limiting
parent involvement to the publication of newsletters or monitoring
students' attendance. The central office proposal which was not
subject to the 1% requirement but which was expected to have a
significant emphasis on parent participation, was inadequate in
addressing this area. In addition, two proposals submitted by the
CPC to the school department for parent involvement training were
3. To determine whether Boston is providing monthly and semi-
annual reports by principals and community district
superintendents to Parent Councils, and other reasonable
educational statistics and data analyses to the CPC.
Is the format for monthly data reports by Boston to
the CPC for 1983-84 working? What progress is being made in. the
CPC receipt of other supplementary reports and data from Boston.
The CPC reports that Boston
timetable for providing the
There is a delay of a month
mixed to a recent survey of
meaningful ness of data from
is not living up to the agreed upon
CPC with needed reports and data,
in the schedule. The response was
SPCs concerning the timeliness and
Boston. Some SPCs are receiving
and reports at all .
on schedule and others are not receiving data
Special Assistant Robert Hayden reports that he was under the
impression that there were no problems with Boston's data
dissemination to the SPCs. He has received no complaints from the
CPC concerning data.
4. To determine whether parents have participated in the
evaluation of community district superintendents and
principals, and in the screening and rating of administrative
See Report No.
2 (Vol. I, pages 88-89). and the Staff report in
5. To determine whether parents are participating in collective
bargaining, the budget review process, major policy planning
initiatives, and training of school department staff as
provided by the November 8, 1982 Agreement.
What is the status of CPC's subcommittee's involvement
in the collective bargaining process? To what degree is the CPC's
position taken into consideration.
The CPC was involved in the collective bargaining process with
full support from the school department. The CPC reports that
parents played an important role in averting a one day teachers'
strike. However, Boston officials report that the CPC's
involvement in the process was problematic. On several occasions,
according to Boston officials, the CPC was not prepared for
meetings to discuss issues of collective bargaining, and on other
occasions parents held up the process with demands for information
which was not available even to School Committee members.
6. To determine whether: (a) all elections to Parent Councils
have been conducted, (b) Councils are properly organized and
meeting, and (c) Council staff are racially balanced.
What is the level of parent participation in
the CPC-SPC structure? How effective are the SPCs?
It was reported in the last Monitoring Report that 8 schools did
not conduct elections, and that several schools had rescheduled
their elections for times more convenient to parents. Since that
report there has been one (1) additional election held, leaving 7
schools without elections.
The level of parent participation is extremely low. There is
widespread criticism of the CPC by parents and school officials
due to the low level of parent participation in the CPC-SPC
structure. In more than 50 schools the SPCs do not meet
regularly; also, parent attendance at CPC meetings is low and
The CPC is facing serious organizational problems, which have led
to the resignation of the Executive Director and 3 of the 4 co-
chairmembers. Currently, the CPC has Acting Executive Co-
Directors who conducted interviews with present and past CPC
members and staff regarding the organizational problems of the
CPC, the results of which are included in a report to Judge W.
Arthur Garrity, Jr. with recommendations for change based on an
internal evaluation of the CPC. Also, the former Executive
Director will report his perception of the CPC's organizational
problems to Judge Garrity and make recommendations for
modifications in the present structure.
Boston officials maintain that the CPC is not following up on its
commitments in general and specifically its responsibility to
involve parents in Boston, adding, "given its annual budget of
over $500,000 and staff of 22 the level and quality of parent
participation in Boston should be much higher."
Considering that there are several issues pending regarding the
organizational problems of the CPC, the monitors will not make
recommendations in this report. However, they note the need for
the CPC to strengthen its connection to Boston officials, using
Special Assistant Hayden as their main link.
1. To determine whether all activities provided under the
Amalgamation Plan have taken place.
What steps has Boston taken to develop and
implement uniform Student Council election standards
The Student Affairs Office developed uniform Student Council
election procedures which were distributed through Deputy
Superintendent Circulars last spring and fall. These procedures
will continue to be used in future years.
A procedure to elect student representatives
to Parent Councils in all high schools was established by the
Student Affairs Office, and 9 high schools elected student
representatives to Parent Councils. What has been done to
increase student representation on parent councils in the
remaining 8 high schools?
The Student Affairs Office was in contact in the late fall with
the Citywide Parents Council (CPC) to encourage elections in the 8
high schools (Boston High, Boston Latin Academy, Boston Latin
School, Boston Technical High, Brighton High, Burke High, Copley
Square High, and South Boston High) that did not elect student
representatives to Parent Councils in the fall. However, neither
the Student Affairs Office nor the CPC knew at the time of this
report whether this effort had resulted in achieving either
goal. The next monitoring period will examine whether student
representation to all high school Parent Councils is insured.
A tentative training schedule for implementation
of Communication Boards in all high schools and the hiring of a
consultant trainer for the initial training at Charlestown High
were approved by the Student Affairs Director in the fall. What
steps has Boston taken to modify the Amalgamation Plan to replace
the Racial-Ethnic Student Councils with Communication Boards?
A training program on Communication Boards was conducted this
winter for selected Charlestown High students and faculty.
However, scheduling of meeting times and difficulties in
administrative and faculty assignments have impeded efforts to
initiate the Board. Communication Boards are also in operation at
Boston Latin School and Boston Latin Academy, although both Boards
suffer from a lack of administrative and faculty support similar
to that experienced at Charlestown High School. Although East
Boston, Brighton and Hyde Park High Schools have "active
grievance/recommendation student groups who meet on a regular
basis with Headmasters," these schools do not have Communications
The Student Affairs Office has targeted implementation of
Communication Boards at South Boston, Copley Square High and
Madison Park High Schools by the end of this school year or at the
beginning of next year. This effort has been stalled, though, by
scheduling difficulties and a lack of funds necessary to train
participating faculty and administrators.
No party has yet sought a modification to the Amalgamation Plan
and Court orders to replace the RESC's with Communication Boards
in all high schools.
The Comments of El Comite de Padres Regarding Second Monitoring
Report , states, "We are concerned that the RESC's have been and
become 'moribund' due to school defendants' deliberate non-
compliance with court orders. Why should 'Communication Boards'
be blithely accepted by the State Board as the solution to
this. ..sabotage of court orders?"
Boston may not have provided adequate support to the RESC's.
However, Communication Boards, if properly implemented, have the
potential not only to address conflicts of a racial nature and to
promote racial harmony, but also to address other school climate
and school policy issues as well. A Communication Board is
composed of a representative body of administrators, teachers and
students. Any individual within a school may submit a complaint,
grievance or school issue to the Board. These issues may be
interpersonal or relate to school rules, school climate or other
school policy issues. They therefore may include issues regarding
racial disharmony or racial conflicts. The Board is then
responsible for hearing all points of view, investigating all
facts, and mediating a mutual resolution. Many times, a
resolution may involve a recommendation for a school policy
change. Communication Bocfrds would meet regularly with the
headmaster to communicate these concerns. Student Affairs
Director Carlo has recommended that all Boards should have student
representation from all racial and ethnic groups in which there
are 20 or more students enrolled in the school. (See Volume II
student organizations report)
El Comite raises a valid point when they question Boston's
commitment to the implementation of these Boards. These Boards
will experience success only if adequate resources and support are
devoted to implement them, and if administrators and faculty
accept an increased student role and a democratic process in their
2. To review the composition of the Boston Student Advisory
Council as well as the Student Councils in all middle and
All 29 schools that submitted data in the fall
on composition of student organizations were found to have proper
representation of racial and ethnic groups. Thirteen schools did
not submit this data (Boston High, Boston Latin School, Taft
Middle, Curley Middle, Lewis Middle, Roosevelt Middle, Cleveland
Middle, Holmes Middle, Wilson Middle, Dearborn Middle, Gavin
Middle, McCormack Middle and Mackey Middle). What is the
composition of the student councils in schools that did not submit
data in the fall?
None of the 13 schools submitted any data on Student Council
representation for this school year.
The Student Affairs Director should be commended for her
continuing efforts to develop the concept of Communication Boards
in all high schools. The Boston Student Advisory Council members
should be commended for their efforts to provide an increased
city-wide student voice.
1. Department of Education officials should meet with Boston and
the plaintiffs in order to discuss modifying the
Analagamation Plan and Court orders to replace the RESC's
with Communication Boards. If modified, adequate resources
and support should be provided by the Office of School
Operations to implement the Communication Boards and to
insure necessary faculty and administrative support in all
high schools; and an implementation schedule of Communication
Boards in all high schools should be developed.
2. Proper student representation needs to be ensured next year
on all school Parent Councils.
3. Student Council elections with proper racial and ethnic
representation need to be ensured in all middle and high
schools next year.
During the present monitoring period, one dispute reached the
mediation stage described at section V(D)(1) of the Orders of
Disengagement. This complaint, filed by plaintiffs, questioned the
process for assigning special needs students to substantially separate
classes. The complaint was withdrawn after information was provided by
members of the School Department during the mediation session.
Three other complaints, all brought by El Comite , remain at the
negotiation stage described at section V(cy(2l of~ the Orders of
Disengagement. These disputes, and the date on which they were raised,
are as follows: (1) the absence of bilingual services at the
Occupational Resource Center, filed on August 18 and September 6, 1983;
(2) overcrowding in the Hiatian bilingual program at English High
School, filed on November 14, 1983; and (3) inadequate funding of
bilingual programs, filed on April 27, 1984. An earlier dispute
regarding access of Spanish bilingual students to District IX magnet
programs, filed on September 20, 1983, was resolved through negotiation
in the previous monitoring period.
Any of the primary parties or intervenors in the case may initiate
a motion to modify existing orders as long as the proposed modifications
have been presented to all parties and the Citywide Parents Council
through a negotiation process under the auspices of the Board of
Such modifications must be shown to be necessary in light of
changed circumstances since the order to be modified was issued, must be
detailed, complete, and show what the impact will be on the educational
rights of minority students, must be "ripe for hearing and decision by
the Court," and must not be inconsistent with Supreme Court decisions or
federal statutes and regulations.
On May 2, 1984, the Boston School Committee requested that the
State Board convene the parties to negotiate proposed amendments to the
orders relating to administrative desegregation. A negotiating session
was convened on May 23, 1984, with a second session expected to occur
during the month of June.