.

Framingham Schools Issues Press Release on Afterschool Contracts

Brophy afterschool care will be provided by Springboard Education in America and Stapleton will have Kidsborough, like Dunning Elementary School.

Framingham Patch file photo
Framingham Patch file photo
The following is a press release issued by the Framingham Public Schools on July 17 at 4:25 p.m.

***

Over the past year, the Framingham Public Schools have been working through its Office of Community Resource and Development to provide quality before and after school programs for our families. This process actually began in the fall of 2013 and it was our hope and expectation that the bidding process, which we must follow, would conclude before the end of the academic school year.

However, for a variety of reasons, we were not able to meet those timelines. We regret that this extended process may have caused anxiety for parents and staff members and we are making the necessary changes to preclude this from happening in the next bidding cycle.

The Framingham Public Schools are required to engage in an open bidding process for any vendor seeking to provide a fee-based before and after school program. Organizations that are selected to provide this service are awarded a one-year contract by school. The bid also provides the District 
with an option to extend contracts for an additional two years after which bidding must be done again.

This past year, 2013-2014, was the third year for all before and after school providers, thus triggering the need for the District to engage in an open bidding process for the coming school year. All vendors were notified of the upcoming bid in the fall of 2013 and the request for proposals from the District was submitted to the Town Procurement Office on January 31, 2014. On March 24, 2014, advertisements were posted in the Metro West Daily News informing the community of the bidding process. On April 2, 2014, a pre-bid meeting was held at the Ablondi Room at Town Hall for any organization interested in bidding. Following the pre-bid meeting, 
bidders had the opportunity to submit additional questions to the Chief Procurement Officer who, in turn, electronically released three addenda to each prospective bidder answering questions as submitted. This process required an extension of the deadline for the proposal submittal to April 
30, 2014. Evaluation forms were developed by the Town Procurement Office and provided to the schools on May 14, 2014. Elementary school principals were asked to participate in the evaluation process by convening small groups of parents and staff representatives to review proposals, use the evaluation tool as a rating document, and submit recommendations to the Office of Community Resource and Development. A deadline of June 1st
asked for and received an extension request to June 26th, which was granted. Upon receipt of each school’s recommendation, the Office of Community Resource Development submitted a summary 
recommendation to the Superintendent’s Office and to the Town Procurement Office.

The Framingham Public Schools continue to place quality programming at the core of our before and after school programs. For those vendors who are continuing to provide services, the District will make every effort to assist them in maintaining high quality programs. For those former 
vendors, we will provide feedback and assist them on how to better align their programs to meet District needs. The Framingham Public Schools will continue to ensure that all programs meet state guidelines with CORI checks and adequate supervision and we welcome feedback as we administer these required procedures.

The District apologizes for any anxiety that it may have created, but 
wishes to assure the school community that a full slate of excellent programs will be in place to meet the needs of families at the start of the school year.

Q&A

Why were parents not involved earlier?
While it was the intent of the Office of Community Resource Development to include parents in the process, we understand that the level of parental involvement did not meet each parent’s level of satisfaction. Our principals made every effort to convene small groups of parents and staff in the recommendation process. A more extensive outreach would have 
added even more time to the process during that time of the year when the entire school community is preparing for the end of the school year.

Who made the decisions?
Under the Town procurement process (Town of Framingham Policy Section I, Procedural 1.4 in conjunction with Massachusetts procurement laws), the cumulative scores of the parent and staff representatives at each school were submitted to the Town Procurement Office. Neither the Superintendent nor the Director of Community Resource Development made any decision to select a specific program. It was the scores from the schools that 
informed the decision.

Does this have something to do with money? Is one vendor paying more in rent than another?
No. Vendors all receive the same rental rate to lease school property as indicated in the Request for Proposals (RFP). The fee is competitively low compared to other districts and fees directly pay for custodial costs, utilities and supplies. This year, the District provided security measures for each program that would ensure the security for staff and participants.

Who are the winning bidders?
• Barbieri - MetroWest YMCA
• Brophy - Springboard Education in America
• Dunning - Kidsborough
• Hemenway - MetroWest YMCA
• McCarthy - MetroWest YMCA
• Potter Road - MetroWest YMCA
• Stapleton - Kidsborough

How will parents find out about the programs for the coming year?
There will be a link on the District webpage to the Community Resource Development page where the before and after school provider information has been placed. 
Connect ED messages will be sent home to parents, in the language of the home, providing an update on before and after school programs.
Schools with new providers will be hosting open houses for students and families where they will have the opportunity to learn more about programs;
Stapleton Elementary School: July 23 from 5:30 pm to 6:30 pm
Brophy Elementary School: July 24 from 5:30 pm to 6:30 pm
Registration materials from before and after school providers will be sent directly to families by the vendors.

Parents will receive information within the next 7-10 days
Andrea Dunne Adrian July 17, 2014 at 10:04 PM
As usual, just a little late. Great reporting, Susan, as usual.
Framingham's Mayor July 17, 2014 at 10:09 PM
anxiety for parents ..during their vacations ..Framingham at its best ..wait till the next round of tax hikes ..more anxiety for a town that is not worth living in anymore..we cant afford new spending we must work within our means ..please !
maryelainesu July 18, 2014 at 07:01 AM
I urge parents unhappy with this process to contact the members of the school committee and hold them accountable for this superintendent's actions. Our elected officials should be more than a rubber stamp for the super, Selectmen should also be made aware of unhappiness, as the quality of the schools effects the entire town. Why would anyone with school age children want the huge turnover in personnel that Framingham has experienced since Dr. Scott was hired? Would you "choose Framingham" if you were not already here? Also, the people on the committee chosen to review the contracts should be public information. Who are they, how were they chosen, and do any of them use the after school programs?
Scott Wadland July 18, 2014 at 09:50 AM
As an appointed member of another town board (EDIC) I can sympathize with the school administration when it comes to the complex and burdensome procurement process that the town must follow by law. But, I can only sympathize with them to a certain point. According to the explanation above, it was known two years ago (when the extensions were granted) that this re-bidding process would have to take place. Given this, why was the RFP not issued until the end of January? Was it substantially different from the RFP that went out before? Then, it took until the middle of May to put together an evaluation form? How could you issue an RFP and not know how you were going to evaluate it? Lastly, when I hear that they are "making the necessary changes ..." it sounds like a familiar, canned response. I wonder if anyone is actually going to keep track of this and make sure that it gets done? If you said something like that to your bosses, wouldn't they follow up on it? Mine certainly would!
Starr July 20, 2014 at 09:25 AM
Another situation where Scott leaves his staff hanging out to dry while he sleeps through it.

Boards

More »
Got a question? Something on your mind? Talk to your community, directly.
Note Article
Just a short thought to get the word out quickly about anything in your neighborhood.
Share something with your neighbors.What's on your mind?What's on your mind?Make an announcement, speak your mind, or sell somethingPost something
See more »