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Schools

Parents, teachers critique high-stakes tests at Northampton forum

Thursday, October 23, 2014

NORTHAMPTON — Gus Morales, president of the Holyoke teachers union, thinks that if the Massachusetts Comprehensive Assessment System had been around when he was growing up, he would not have received his diploma. “Had this been the culture of the schools when I was growing up, I would have dropped out,” he said to a crowd of more than 30 parents and educators at the Northampton High School library Thursday …

Hampshire Regional Drama Company to stage ‘Fools’ Friday through Sunday

Thursday, October 23, 2014

WESTHAMPTON — The Hampshire Regional High School Drama Company will stage a play this weekend about a Russian village that has been cursed with stupidity. Neil Simon’s comedy “Fools,” set in the late 19th-century, follows schoolteacher Leon Tolchinsky as he tries to educate the townspeople and eventually falls for one of them, a woman named Sophia. About 30 students, grades 7 through 12, …

State places Greenfield Commonwealth Virtual School on probation

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

GREENFIELD — Since a state review this summer, the Greenfield Commonwealth Virtual School has put in place programs for Title 1 and English language learning and hired a school psychologist and three family engagement coordinators. But the changes appear to be too little, too late. The Greenfield-based cyber school has been placed on probation for 20 months until June 30, 2016, when its …

Mother of Ryan Road School student objects to police firearms training nearby during weekdays

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

NORTHAMPTON — A Florence woman said she plans to keep her fifth-grade son at home two days next week so he remains out of earshot of gunfire when the Police Department’s state-required firearms training partially overlaps with school …

Amherst Regional High School African Scholars substitute fundraiser for exchange trip

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

AMHERST — An exchange trip to Senegal and The Gambia planned by members of the Amherst Regional High School African Scholars has been postponed due to the Ebola epidemic in West Africa. However, the students are channeling their disappointment into action by holding a West African take-out fundraiser …

Greenfield Community College teams with area high schools to teach about sustainable agriculture

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

GREENFIELD — Greenfield Community College has received a grant of almost $50,000 from the U.S. Department of Agriculture to start new courses in sustainable agriculture, along with free workshops for local high school teachers who are bringing farm-based components into the curriculum. The initiative is called Educational Networks …

Barbara Love says discussion of racist incidents part of healing process in Amherst

Monday, October 20, 2014

AMHERST — White people have learned a series of reactions to racism, progressing from denial to confusion to concluding that the victim must have done something wrong, Barbara Love told about 130 people at the Unitarian Society of …

Smith Vocational serves up breakfast and talk about its future for area politicians

Friday, October 17, 2014

NORTHAMPTON — Student cooks at the Oliver Smith Restaurant at Smith Vocational and Agricultural High School served up breakfast Friday morning to nine legislators while officials discussed possible changes in the way the school operates. Superintendent Jeffrey Peterson …

Calvin Terrell says missteps contributed to uproar in Amherst over his anti-bullying presentations

Friday, October 17, 2014

AMHERST — Social justice activist Calvin Terrell of Phoenix said if the steps he suggested to school officials had been followed, it’s unlikely his anti-bullying presentations to middle schoolers earlier this month would have upset so many people. …

Amherst citizen group sponsors talk by Barbara Love about racism

Thursday, October 16, 2014

AMHERST — Barbara Love, professor emeritus of social justice at the University of Massachusetts School of Education, will give a talk entitled “Love, Care and Racism” at the Unitarian Universalist Society of Amherst on Monday. The event, sponsored by the citizen group Coming Together: Understanding Racism, Working for …

ABC Fall Foliage Walk and 5K Run fundraiser Saturday in Amherst

Monday, October 13, 2014

AMHERST — A program that has given young men of color the opportunity to live in Amherst and study at Amherst Regional High School will holds it major fundraiser Saturday. Walkers and runners can support the A Better …

NYC poised to end school cellphone ban

Sunday, October 12, 2014

NEW YORK — New York City is preparing to end its ban on cellphones in schools, dooming an industry that sprang up near dozens of schools where teens could park their phones in a van for a dollar …

South Hadley considers two-tiered high school diploma system

Friday, October 10, 2014

SOUTH HADLEY — The bar for getting a diploma from South Hadley High School may be too high for some students, said Superintendent Nicholas Young, and he has appointed a group to look into offering two types of …