New Canaan High School Rams fans soon will have the ability to watch significantly more sports contests online, as district officials work with the broadcast arm of an Indianapolis-based organization that helps develop standards and rules for interscholastic activities nationwide. Starting no later than this fall, some 200 games and matches at Dunning Stadium and the NCHS gym will be streamed live, according to Athletic Director Jay Egan, through the High School Sports Network, a service of the National Federation of State High School Associations. “I think it’s an expectation that our parents have that this is a service we can provide for them and I think people are really excited thinking about being able to do this,” Egan told members of the Board of Education during their regular meeting, held Monday night in the Wagner Room at NCHS. The service costs user a fee in the range of $25 to $50 per year, and involves installing camera equipment at the NCHS facilities, Egan said. The approximately $6,500 it costs to get up and running is being paid for by the Booster Club, he said.
The coverage will complement and expand about 55 to 60 games already streamed online each year through an excellent student-operated NCTV 78 YouTube channel. Continue Reading →
An internal district working group has found that New Canaan should continue researching “slightly later start and end times” for the middle and high school and “slightly earlier” times for elementary schools, according to research that the superintendent of schools made public Monday night. As it considers whether to make changes so that high schoolers aren’t starting so early, New Canaan Public Schools “should prioritize student sleep and time for homework in making scheduling decisions,” according to a presentation that Dr. Bryan Luizzi shared during a meeting of the Board of Education. The Board of Ed remains far from reaching a decision—its members talked about convening a public-facing committee in September and reiterated that nothing will happen until the 2019-20 academic year, in part for budgeting reasons. While Luizzi reviewed much of the scientific evidence surrounding adolescent sleep and health (“The research has shown me that this is an important consideration for schools,” he said, adding that “the science of it certainly seems to be pointing to a need for schedules to be developed that facilitate student sleep”), an April survey from Hanover Research—of 1,312 middle and high school students, 1,126 parents and guardians, 379 school staff members and seven people from the wider community—found that respondents perceive starting school later would have a negative effect on homework (as well as activities outside of school). Yet the survey also found that respondents believe starting earlier complicates parents’ work schedules and before-school care, and has a negative impact on participation in school publications and performing arts programs.
“Ultimately, I don’t know what the answer is going to be,” Luizzi said at the meeting, held in the Wagner Room at New Canaan High School and attended by more than 50 parents. Continue Reading →
Because he must pay attention to people in the district who are opposed no matter what, the superintendent of schools isn’t in a good position to lead an internal working group looking into starting school later in the morning, according to members of a parents’ group that wants the change. Superintendent of Schools Dr. Bryan Luizzi is expected some time in June to share the administrative group’s thoughts on starting school later in the morning, but he should be arriving at a recommendation with input from the wider community, lifelong resident and New Canaan Public Schools parent David Rucci told members of the Board of Education at their most recent regular meeting. “It is very difficult, [according to] all the research that we have done, for the superintendent to be in charge of this,” Rucci said at the meeting, held May 21 in the Wagner Room at New Canaan High School. “He is going to get a lot of internal pressure from other places and we understand that that is a problem for him. And it’s not easy for him to sort of negotiate through that. Continue Reading →
The superintendent of schools and chief of the New Canaan Police Department said Friday that they’ve reached “a conceptual agreement” that will give authorities access to school security video. That agreement will be put into a formal document for review by the district and NCPD, Superintendent of Schools Dr. Bryan Luizzi and Police Chief Leon Krolikowski said in an email to the press. “The conceptual agreement ensures that police department officials will have immediate access to school security cameras in the event of an emergency,” they said. It isn’t clear whether police will have continuous access to interior cameras at the schools, rather than access through some type of login—a process that Krolikowski has described as problematic in the event of an emergency. Luizzi has cited the need to honor student privacy rights under the Federal Education Rights and Privacy Act, a law
that gives parents certain protections with regard to their children’s education records, including school security videos. Continue Reading →
Police and district officials said Wednesday that they’re planning to meet and hammer out the details of the New Canaan Police Department’s would-be access to interior cameras at public schools. Despite making formal and public requests of the district to bounce back a proposed Memorandum of Understanding or ‘MOU’ regarding that access, police officials said that they only received an email from the superintendent of schools that same day to meet with the Board of Education’s attorney on the matter. “Apparently the Board of Education met this past Monday and discussed it and he [Superintendent of Schools Dr. Bryan Luizzi] is wanting me and him and the Board of Education attorney to sit down and discuss the MOU again,” Police Chief Leon Krolikowski said during a regular meeting of the Police Commission, held at NCPD headquarters. “I don’t know when that is going to happen but so far we do not have access to interior video cameras which we desperately want especially in the case of an emergency or in the case of a big event that we need access in order to have our officers dispatched there as quickly as possible to help people. So I’m hopeful that this is going to happen but it has been a long process. Continue Reading →