NORTH KINGSTOWN, R.I. — The North Kingstown School Committee met Tuesday night via Zoom, their second meeting since the start of the school year earlier this month, and voted unanimously on several issues, including a new remediation software, updates to the police traffic details and an update to the mask policy during a roughly 30 minute meeting.
With the school year now two weeks in for students in North Kingstown, the administration, along with the town and the North Kingstown Police Department, decided to scale back the morning and afternoon police traffic details around the district’s schools initially put in place to deal with the extra volume of single vehicle pick up and drop offs, choosing to focus the details specifically on the schools they felt are in the most need for them.
Initially having details at every school except Davisville Academy, the district’s smallest by population, details at Quidnessett Elementary, Forest Park Elementary, Fishing Cove Elementary and Davisville Middle School have had their pick up and drop off processes deemed smooth and safe enough to discontinue the police details, while they will be maintained at North Kingstown High School, Wickford Middle School, Hamilton Elementary and Stony Lane Elementary due to higher traffic levels and, in the case of Hamilton, busier intersections.
North Kingstown School District Chief Operating Officer Mary King said that the North Kingstown Police have been “very flexible” and they would be able to add details back at any time if needed.
The School Committee also voted unanimously to approve the adoption of Edmentum remediation software to replace the previously used Edgenuity program. Assistant Superintendent Denise Mancieri said NKHS Assistant Principal for Teaching and Learning Shivali Finkelstein had asked around at other districts about the software and heard great feedback.
Mancieri said the software offered more classes, including Career and Technical Education (CTE), than Edgenuity and the cost of the program came in at $1000 below what the district had budgeted for it.
An amendment to the mask policy was also made, removing the wording “cloth face covering,” such as bandanas, as an alternative to face masks, something which Superintendent Phil Auger said was to keep in line with updated guidelines from the CDC and Rhode Island Department of Health.
“In the next few days, we will put in some tighter deadlines on what’s acceptable (for masks) and what’s not based on Department of Health guidelines,” Auger said, arguing he wasn’t signaling any specific type of face covering out, but rather trying to keep the district better aligned with the state and federal mask guidelines.
The next North Kingstown School Committee meeting is scheduled for Oct. 13 at 7 p.m. via Zoom.