Somerville School Committee
The School Committee is an elected body that oversees the Somerville Public Schools. Members work with the Superintendent to set broad policies, develop a recommended budget for submission to the Mayor, and monitor the finances of the School Department. The Committee is composed of seven members elected by ward every two years (on the odd years). The Mayor and the Board of Aldermen President are ex-officio members with full voting rights. The School Committee has regular meetings the first and third Monday of every month during the school year (September through June). Meetings, held in the Aldermanic Chambers at Somerville City Hall, are open to the public. Meetings are broadcast live on Somerville Cable Channel 16.
Subcommittees of the Somerville School Committee are where much of business associated with overseeing the Somerville Public Schools happens. There are three subcommittees of the School Committee composed of the following members:
In addition, the Committee for Long Range Planning is a Standing Committee of the Whole. It is chaired by the Chair of the School Committee.
The School Committee also has a representative on the Board of Directors of Shore Collaborative. Paul Bockelman is the current representative.
Subcommittee Meetings and Subcommittee Meetings of the Whole are usually hosted in the Somerville Public Schools Central Office located at 42 Cross Street. Members of the public are welcome to attend these meetings. Agendas, Weekly Calls, and Minutes for Regular and Subcommittee meetings are available online under "School Committee Meetings" in the menu to the left.
To request meeting handouts and materials, please contact Patti Marques by sending an email to email@example.com or calling 617-629-5211.
School Committee Members
ADAM SWEETING, Ward 3: CHAIR; School Committee for Long-Range Planning (Chairperson)
(617) 666-8787; 44 Montrose Street, Somerville MA 02143; firstname.lastname@example.org
Adam Sweeting has represented Ward 3 on the School Committee since 2008 and is the father of two children enrolled in the Somerville Public Schools. Before joining the School Committee he was active in school-specific and city-wide discussions concerning education and was a volunteer coach in the Somerville Youth Soccer League. Mr. Sweeting brings an extensive background in higher education to the School Committee. He earned a doctorate in American Studies in 1993 and since 1996 has been a professor of Humanities at Boston University, where he was named the Teacher/Scholar of the Year in 2006. He served a two-year term (2010-2012) as Chairman of the Boston University Faculty Council. He was a member of the BU Board of Trustees from 2010 to 2012. Mr. Sweeting served as Chair of the School Committee in 2011, and currently serves as the Chair of the Finance & Facilities Subcommittee. Mr. Sweeting is also currently serving on the Advisory Board of the Boston University Children's Center.
CARRIE NORMAND, Ward 7: VICE-CHAIR; Finance & Facilities Subcommittee (Chairperson)
(617) 623-0321; 25 Kingston Street, Somerville MA 02144; email@example.com
Carrie Normand has represented Ward 7 on the School Committee since 2014. She currently chairs the Finance & Facilities subcommittee. Carrie's experience as an active Somerville community member and youth advocate include serving as the Healey School Improvement Council co-Chair, and active membership in the PTA and the Somerville Special Education Parent Advisory Council. She has worked with Somerville Public Schools students as a literacy and math tutor. Carrie's local community work also included being a Somerville Youth Hockey parent representative and a writing instructor for the Somerville Council on Aging. As a Somerville Special Education Advocacy Project Fellow for Massachusetts Advocates for Children, she extended her advocacy work to the state level. Carrie has lived in Somerville for more than 20 years with her husband, David Zraket. They have two boys attending the Somerville Public Schools.
STEVEN ROIX, Ward 1: Rules Management Subcommittee (Chairperson); Finance & Facilities Subcommittee
(617) 863-7649; 21 Pinkney Street, Somerville MA 02145; firstname.lastname@example.org
Steve Roix has represented Ward 1 on the School Committee since 2013. He currently serves as the Chairman of the Rules Management Subcommittee. A lifetime resident of Massachusetts, Steve grew up in Athol, MA. He earned a Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering from Worcester Polytechnic Institute, and is an engineer for the railroad industry. Steve and his family have been East Somerville residents for 10 years. He and his wife, Julie, have been actively involved in various community organizations including East Somerville Main Streets, Somerville Dog Owners Group, East Somerville Neighbors for Change, and the Capuano Early Childhood Center School Improvement Council. Steve and Julie have two children enrolled in the Somerville Public Schools.
DAN FUTRELL, Ward 2: Finance & Facilities Subcommittee
(617) 651-1070; 38 Clark Street #1R, Somerville MA 02143; email@example.com
Dan Futrell has represented Ward 2 since 2014, and currently serves on the Finance and Facilities subcommittee. Mr. Futrell draws on his experience at the intersection of education, poverty, and business at the youth development nonprofit Year Up, which connects young adults in poverty to professional careers in Somerville and Greater Boston. He currently serves as Year Up's Director of Growth Strategy as the organization moves through an intense growth phase to serve 50% more students, nearly 500/year locally. Previously, Mr. Futrell served as an Infantry Captain in the United States Army, deploying twice to Baghdad, Iraq in 2006 and 2009. During his service, he commanded at the Platoon and Company levels and earned the coveted Ranger tab, a Combat Infantryman's Badge, and was twice awarded the Bronze Star Medal. Mr. Futrell holds a Masters in Public Policy from Harvard, a Bachelor's in business from Gonzaga University, and is an avid runner with his dog Maggie.
(617) 335-0164; 122 Heath Street, Somerville MA 02145; firstname.lastname@example.org
Christine Rafal has represented Ward 4 since 2010. She and her husband Howie have two daughters in the Somerville Public Schools. Prior to joining the School Committee, Christine served on the Healey School Council, beginning as a community representative when her elder daughter was one year old. She also taught in an after-school program, served on the after-school program design team, and volunteers for book groups and field trips. Christine's professional background includes teaching English and writing, conducting classroom research, crafting performance assessments, developing online courses, and both writing and adapting special-topic curricula. She is currently the Coordinator for Grants and Evaluation at Artists for Humanity. Christine earned her doctorate in Teaching, Curriculum and Learning Environments.
LAURA PITONE, Ward 5: Educational Programs and Instruction Subcommittee (Chairperson), Rules Management Subcommittee
(617) 776-6035; 46 Rogers Ave., Somerville MA 02144; email@example.com
Laura Pitone has represented Ward 5 on the School Committee since 2014. She is currently chair of the Educational Programs and Instruction Subcommittee, and serves on the Rules Management Subcommittee. Laura originally moved to the area to attend college and quickly found herself drawn to Somerville's "diversity and small-scale urban environment." She has been a Somerville resident for 12 years. Laura's experience in data analysis, team-building and budget management, along with her commitment to participatory leadership, have helped her excel in industry and community work. She earned an engineering degree from MIT and a business degree from Babson College, and has worked as a manufacturing engineer and information technology consultant. She was a member of the Healey School Improvement Council for three years, where her leadership, communication and team-building skills helped ensure the successful redesign of two distinct programs at the school into a unified program. Laura has also served on the Somerville City and Schools Children and Youth Study Team, and the Somerville Special Education Parent Advisory Committee (SPED-PAC). Laura and her husband, Tom Cole, have two children enrolled at the Healey School.
PAUL BOCKELMAN, Ward 6: Shore Collaborative Representative; Educational Programs and Instruction Subcommittee
(617) 623-8863, 64 Wallace Street, Somerville, MA 02144, firstname.lastname@example.org
Mr. Bockelman has represented Ward 6 on the School Committee since 2006. He draws from his substantial experience working with communities and currently serves as the Director of Administration and Finance at the Massachusetts Municipal Association, a non-profit organization that advocates on behalf of Massachusetts cities and towns. Previously, he served as Town Manager for 13 years in Manchester-by-the-Sea, Massachusetts. He also worked for the City of Cambridge Historical Commission. Mr. Bockelman serves on the Education Programs and Instruction Subcommittee and is the Somerville School Committee's Shore Collaborative Representative. He chaired the 2014 School Committee Superintendent Search process. A long time volunteer in the Somerville Public Schools, Paul also helped coordinate public participation in the previous School Superintendent search process. As a frequent classroom volunteer at the Healey School, he also served as co-chair of the citywide Choice Program for three years. Paul has served on numerous city committees including the Municipal Building Committee, Charter Committee, and the Somerville Historic Preservation Commission. He also currently serves on the Board of Directors of the Community Action Agency of Somerville (CAAS). Mr. Bockelman holds a Masters degree from MIT and a Bachelor's Degree from Hampshire College. He and Cathy have two children Corey and Mattie, who both went through the Somerville Public Schools, and have made Somerville their home for more than 30 years.
Joe Curtatone has been Mayor of Somerville since 2003. Prior to that he served as a member of the Board of Aldermen. Learn more about Mayor Curtatone on the City of Somerville website.
Mary Skipper joined the Somerville Public Schools as Superintendent in July of 2015, following an outstanding career at Boston Public Schools (BPS). Most recently, she was Network Superintendent of Schools for BPS, where she oversaw BPS' 34 high schools serving approximately 19,500 students. Under her leadership as Network Superintendent, Boston high schools achieved the lowest drop-out and the highest graduation rates in BPS history. Among her most notable accomplishments while at BPS, Superintendent Skipper helped launch TechBoston Academy (TBA) as the founding Headmaster in 2002. During her tenure as TBA Headmaster, the Academy grew from a 9-12 high school serving 75 students, to a 6-12 school with a staff of more than 100 serving a diverse student population of more than 1,000, 30% of which were English Language Learners and 25% of which were Special Education students. Additional roles Superintendent Skipper held at BPS included Assistant Academic Superintendent for Pilot Schools, and Technology Project Manager within the Office of Instructional Technology.
Superintendent Skipper holds a Bachelor's in English and Latin from Tufts University. She earned a Master's in Education Policy from Harvard and a Master's in Urban Education Leadership from Columbia Teachers College. She is currently working toward her Doctorate in Urban Education Leadership from Columbia Teachers College.
Superintendent Skipper and her husband Peter, a teacher at BC High School, have three children: Kassie, a teacher in Denver; Lani, who leads a Farm to Table initiative in the midwest; and Peter, who works at Deloitte in Washington, D.C.