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Friends and neighbors

Friday, September 4, 2015

Amherst Gabriel Killough-Hill has joined AmeriCorps for a term of national service on a Maine Conservation Corps field team. Gabriel is a 2015 graduate of Amherst Regional High School and the son of Bill and Ruthie Killough-Hill. The MCC conducts conservation projects throughout the State of Maine, including extensive recreational trail construction and rehabilitation. Belchertown Cameron Laramee was named to the spring presidents list at LeTourneau University in Longview, Texas. Patrick K. Gooden, an Army Reserve Officers’ Training Corps (ROTC) cadet at Fitchburg State University, Fitchburg, has graduated from the cadet leader course at Fort Knox, Kentucky. CLC is a 30-day summer training event focused …

SAT scores slip again

Friday, September 4, 2015

WASHINGTON — Student performance on the SAT college entrance exam is lagging, continuing a mostly downward trend over the last five years. The College Board says in a report that a record number of students took the exam. The nonprofit organization, which administers the exam, said in a report released Thursday that the …

Michele Gay, mother of Sandy Hook shooting victim, speaks to Williston faculty and staff about school safety

Thursday, September 3, 2015

EASTHAMPTON — Michele Gay stood in front of more than 200 faculty and staff at the Williston Northampton School on Thursday and recounted step by step what she can remember from the day her youngest daughter, Josephine, was killed when a shooter entered Sandy Hook Elementary School in December 2012. “I share this …

Jabish Brook Middle School in Belchertown to begin using Google applications

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

BELCHERTOWN — Students and teachers at the Jabish Brook Middle School will be piloting an experiment in how the entire district might expand what Principal Thomas Ruscio calls “integrating technology into the classroom.” A small group will start using a few applications developed by the search engine turned …

South Hadley to open new elementary school

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

SOUTH HADLEY — Construction was the talk of the South Hadley education community this summer. The middle school will get a new entranceway with bulletproof glass designed to impede unauthorized entry. The Mosier Elementary School is getting a …

Shutesbury Elementary splits fifth and sixth grades

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

SHUTESBURY — Principal Jacqueline Mendonsa is committed to the 132 kids currently enrolled at Shutesbury Elementary having another enriching year, with artists-in-residence, spirit weeks, opportunities for physical education, and special programs on and off-campus. “I think the school is a great source of pride for the town,” she …

Performing arts charter school to celebrate 20th anniversary with new performance space, more community-oriented programs

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

SOUTH HADLEY — At a place like the Pioneer Valley Performing Arts Public Charter School — where the focus is on intensive education in theater, music and other artistic disciplines — the campus is bound to get noisy. …

Leverett principal eager for ‘Response to Intervention’ model

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

LEVERETT — “There’s something I call ‘the Leverett character,’” said Margot Lacey, Principal of Leverett Elementary School, in a recent interview. “People like being here, and they really appreciate being part of this community.” The elementary school, she said, is considered to be “for everybody,” and the school’s …

Smith Vocational to start composting, add new staff this year to fit needs of large freshman class

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

NORTHAMPTON — Smith Vocational and Agricultural High School will be taking its “farm to table” model to a new level this year. Pending approval from the Massachusetts Department of Agricultural Resources, the school plans to begin composting its …

Building projects, discipline strategies on the agenda for Amherst schools

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

AMHERST — Discipline, technology, scheduling, arts integration and building projects are all expanded topics on the agenda at the Amherst and Pelham schools this coming school year. Assistant Superintendent Michael Morris said the district’s two potential building projects …

Positive behaviors program leads to classroom success at Hadley Elementary School; Hopkins shores up AP courses

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

HADLEY — Hadley Elementary School staff and teachers will continue their efforts this year to meet the academic, social and emotional needs of all students, with a focus on increasing positive behaviors through a program introduced last year, said Superintendent Anne S. McKenzie. Hadley Elementary will welcome over …

A ‘new approach’ to teaching computer science: Get rid of the computer

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

HOLYOKE — This fall, a dozen area high schools will take a new approach to computer classes — sometimes by ditching the computer. While much of the Exploring Computer Science program does in fact feature computer work, the …

Amherst survey seeks reaction on possible merger of regional middle and high schools

Friday, August 14, 2015

AMHERST — Residents of Amherst, Shutesbury, Pelham and Leverett are being asked to weigh in on the possible consolidation of the regional middle and high schools through a community survey released Friday. The survey, available online and in print, aims to collect information from families with children in …