Board of Trustees

Meeting Minutes

Meeting Date:July 23, 2018

Meeting Time: 7 pm

Meeting Location: 59 Armstrong Road

Narrative Mission Statement:

What is the purpose of this school?

"…The Rising Tide Charter School provides students with community-based education each day, using the town of Plymouth as a local yet dynamic textbook which will provide fertile ground for the development of higher-order thinking skills."

Leadership and Governance:

"In accordance with MA Charter School Law, the Board of Trustees is ultimately accountable for the school's educational mission, performance and adherence to its Charter."

Call to Order           

Chairman, Chris Schelleng, called the meeting to order at 7pm.  In attendance were Chris Schelleng, Chrissy Gurney, Sharon Riley, Sean Kelly, Amy Norris, and Norm DeCoste.  Also in attendance were Michael O’Keefe, Head of School; and Eric Mello, Business Manager.






Sharon Riley made a motion to approve the June minutes.  Sean Kelly seconded the motion.  All voted in favor to approve the June minutes. Amy Norris and Norm DeCoste abstained from voting.


New Business

Michael updated the Board on the Accountability Plan. The Accountability Plan needs to be updated and submitted to the Charter School Office at the beginning of every five year Charter term.   In the Plan, Michael has outlined the School’s goals for the next five years. The goals contain Key Design Elements of the School; and Key Objectives, which contain at least one outcome measure.  The Key Design Elements, which are directly related to the School’s Mission Statement are:

-Strong academic program with connection to local history and resources

-Student development of skills through rigorous studies

-Sense of place and belonging

-Graduate capable and prepared young adults


Michael has shared the Key Design Elements with the Charter School Office and is waiting for feedback.  Michael can also add Reach Goals to the Plan, which are not held to the same accountability as the other goals.


A new component from the Charter School Office is the Dissemination Process.  The School will continue its partnership with Plymouth Public Schools related to the development of social and emotional training skills.  The partnership is working to provide workshops, related to social and emotional learning, to all educators in the Rising Tide community.  They are also working to provide examples of best practices for educators on the School’s website.

Enrollment Policy Update

Michael provided the Board with a copy of the updated Enrollment Policy.  A Table of Contents has been added.  Most of the changes in the Policy were for clarity purposes. The Lottery Process was changed per the Charter School Office.  There will now be only one Lottery group, as opposed to the three groups that the School used to have (Siblings, In District, Out of District).


Sean Kelly made a motion to accept the updated Enrollment Policy.  Amy Norris seconded the motion.  All voted in favor to accept the updated Enrollment Policy.


Old Business




Eric updated the Board on the June Financials and the end of the Fiscal Year report.  Eric is preparing for the audit, which will take place in July and August.  The auditor’s report will be presented to the Board in October or November.


Income is over budget by $179,168, due to a rebate for energy efficient lighting and the Dissemination Grant.

Expenses are under budget by $591,538.


Sharon Riley made a motion to accept the June Financials.  Sean Kelly seconded the motion.  All voted in favor to accept the June Financials.



Program Leaders return to School in August.

Public Relations

Michael spoke with Michaela Dawson, a former Rising Tide employee who now works at Pioneer Institute.  The Pioneer Institute is making two minute presentations on six area schools, and Rising Tide will be one of the schools featured.

Public Comment



School Report

Michael is working on hiring teachers.  Everyone is excited not to have to move buildings at the start of the school year.  The entire Leadership Team returns to School on August 8th.

Executive Session

Chrissy Gurney made a motion to enter into Executive Session to discuss construction close-out details.  Sharon Riley seconded the motion.  All voted in favor to enter into Executive Session.



Amy Norris made a motion to Adjourn.  Norm DeCoste seconded the motion.  All voted to Adjourn.