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KEVIN GUTTING
Jim Brooks of Northampton takes a recreational shell out for a row on the Connecticut River. The oars are fixed into the oar locks so the blade is "square," the best angle to power through the water, but this immobilization also keeps the blade from being "feathered," or turned parallel to the surface, during the return stroke out of the water.

Northampton High School InventTeam designs special oar for rowers with disabilities

Friday, March 27, 2015

NORTHAMPTON — It was 17 years ago when Jim Brooks became disabled due to complications from multiple sclerosis. Then, nine years ago, a chance encounter in a grocery store introduced the former multi-sport athlete to the world of rowing, which would soon become his main source of exercise. He had run into Stephanie Moore, the director of Holyoke Rows, while …

Towns question decision by Frontier Regional School Committee to reverse staff cuts

Thursday, March 26, 2015

SUNDERLAND — The decision by the Frontier Regional School Committee to reinstate funding for six positions and raise its budget by about 2 percent may not stand if the district’s four towns have their way. The budget will be presented at Deerfield, Sunderland, Whately and Conway’s town meetings next month, but representatives from at least three towns said during a four-town meeting Thursday …

Area brief

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Amherst NOMINATIONS FOR EDUCATOR AWARD: Parents, students, teachers and staff are invited to make nominations for the first Amherst Regional Middle School Educator Award. It will recognize an educator who demonstrates a commitment to supporting students, collaborating with colleagues and contributing in a positive way to the middle school community. It is open to all educators and staff, including teachers, paraprofessionals, and cafeteria …

Area brief

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Easthampton PARCC DISCUSSION FOR PARENTS: There will be a meeting for parents to discuss questions and concerns about the Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers (PARCC) from 7 to 8:30 p.m. Wednesday in the Public Safety Complex, 32 Payson Ave. Students in Grades 3 to …

Treehouse Foundation HEROES stage performance based on foster-care experiences

Saturday, March 14, 2015

AMHERST — About a dozen young people sent their message loud and proud Friday night as they got on stage at Hampshire College to sing, dance and read poems about their experience in the foster-care system in a …

Proposed $30.69 million budget does not include later start time for Northampton High School

Friday, March 13, 2015

NORTHAMPTON — Superintendent John Provost is proposing a $30.69 million school budget that forgoes a long-debated later high school start time. Arts and academic programs would have had to be cut to pay for the change, he said. “I felt that the losses to the high school would …

Steve Lewis Subaru donates $29,000 to Hadley Elementary School which will help pay for rock-climbing wall

Friday, March 13, 2015

HADLEY — Jaws dropped in the Hadley Elementary School cafeteria Friday morning when the 300-plus students saw how much money a local car dealership donated to the Parent Teacher Organization. Steve Lewis of Steve Lewis Subaru and suited …

Frontier Regional School Committee approves $9.9 million budget which spares the loss of six jobs

Thursday, March 12, 2015

DEERFIELD — Six staff members at the Frontier Regional School have less to worry about now that the regional School Committee has approved a $9.9 million budget — a 2.05 percent increase over the current year. Six jobs had been cut from the proposed budget as deliberations began …

Hampshire Regional High School to stage ‘Little Shop of Horrors’ this weekend

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

WESTHAMPTON — Despite hours of lost rehearsal time thanks to February’s barrage of snowstorms, Hampshire Regional High School has managed to pull together a night of music, dancing and a talking plant for its spring musical this weekend. …

Northampton Education Foundation prepares for 15th annual Adult Spelling Bee

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

NORTHAMPTON — Whether you fancy yourself a word wizard, or just enjoy crazy costumes and jokes about grammar, it’s not too late to form a team for the annual adult spelling bee to benefit city schools. The 15th …

Nature’s wonders

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Frank Grindrod, who runs the Williamsburg-based Earthwork Programs, which offers nature-based outdoor education for children, was with a group of area children at Larch Hill Conservation Area in Amherst on Friday. Gazette photographer Keving Gutting took these photos. …

Hayley Hemminger-Martin plays Jesus in Northampton High School production of ‘Godspell’

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

NORTHAMPTON — For the lead role of Jesus Christ in Northampton High School’s production of “Godspell,” directors Cate Damon and Beau Flahive said they were looking for someone who had “Christ-like” poise, possessed a warm, welcoming and quirky …

Deerfield School Committee approves budget calling for eliminating teacher and five instructional assistants

Monday, March 9, 2015

DEERFIELD — The town’s School Committee has approved a $4.3 million budget for next year — an increase of 2.5 percent over this year — but nobody appears particularly happy with the way that it was achieved. If approved at Town Meeting, the budget would cut one full-time …