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May 9-11, 2007

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Also on Wednesday afternoon, a panel composed of Wayne Blais, Catherine Hilgendorf, Ingrid Moulton, Ed Murdough, Gordon Root, Carolyn Sarno and Kirk Stone discussed the Northeast High Performance School Protocol and how the program works. They presented a case study on a project from each state.

The final Wednesday workshop was a Cracker-Barrel Session, which provided an opportunity for informal discussions on many topics. Committee members Kris Pottle and Diane Boucher facilitated the session. Learning comes in many forms!

Wednesday evening began with a delicious dinner at Fratello’s Ristorante Italiano located in a building that was part of the historic milliard complex. Following the dinner, many of the conference attendees toured the Mill yard museum and learned of the lives of Manchester’s early inhabitants. We were also treated to the Lego Mill yard Project at the See Science Center, which was a replica of the mill yard complex constructed entirely out of Legos. What an undertaking!! While this was going on, a number of our number managed to get last minute tickets to see a Rod Stewart concert--you never know what opportunities might arise at a Tri-State ASBO conference!

We began Thursday morning with student entertainment provided by the Manchester West Choral Group, followed by welcoming remarks by Dr. Lyonel Tracy, NH Commissioner of Education and Dr. Mike Ludwell, Superintendent of Schools for the Manchester, NH School District. Guests then left for a morning tour of the Zimmerman house designed by Frank Lloyd Wright and an afternoon “Journey to the Stars” at the Christa McAuliffe Planetarium.

In a departure from our normal scheduling, Thursday morning’s program consisted of concurrent workshops. The early sessions covered School Security and the National Incident Management System presented by Peter Coffey. Sheryl Pratt returned with a session on Federal Grant Management, focusing on the payroll certification form. In George Rioux’s session on the Fair Labor Standards Act we learned what might trigger a Federal Department of Labor audit and what are the most common problems found during an audit. Bruce Smith shared his expertise in the areas of records retention. He described the dilemma we face in determining how to meet statutory requirements in retaining records while protecting districts’ interests in the event of a federal lawsuit.

Later sessions included training in practical strategies in running effective meetings, presented by Barbara J. Eretzian and Eileen King. Dr. Darrell Lockwood, Chief Michael French and Frederick Deppe, all of Goffstown, NH described Goffstown’s efforts to build a total community response system to meet an emergency. Roger Young’s session, “Best Practice in Maintenance” described the need to provide a clean and safe environment for children by creating a physical setting that is appropriate and adequate for learning. Tom Flygare focused on current trends in negotiations in the “Labor Negotiations – Benefits Related Issues session. As we face continued strains on districts’ resources, a number of attendees appreciated the opportunity to learn about the fundamentals of pooling (insurance). Ty Gagne of Primex3 presented this session.

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