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Lucy Francis, of Lynn, Mass., center, displays a placard and chants slogans during a rally, Tuesday, July 22, 2014, on the steps of City Hall, in Lynn, Mass., held to protest what organizers describe as the scapegoating of immigrants for problems in the city. The mayor of Lynn and education officials complain their schools are being overwhelmed by young Guatemalans who speak neither English or Spanish as their first language. (AP Photo)

Immigrant debate hits home in Lynn

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

LYNN — The national debate over an unprecedented wave of Central American young people entering the country illegally is more of a practical challenge in places like Lynn, a former industrial city outside Boston that’s thousands of miles from the U.S.-Mexico border. There, city officials complain newly arriving Guatemalan children are straining classroom resources, and the mayor and school superintendent … 0

Amherst school panel reverses reprimand of Amilcar Shabazz over use of ‘racist’ term for student

Monday, July 14, 2014

PELHAM — A quorum of the Amherst Regional School Committee on Monday faulted the decision of its chairman to reprimand member Amilcar Shabazz for allegedly calling an unidentified middle school student a racist. But to those who signed the memo that chastised Shabazz for his comments, including Chairman Lawrence O’Brien and Katherine Appy, … 5

Teachers union targets education secretary

Sunday, July 13, 2014

LOS ANGELES — A national teachers convention on Sunday called for President Barack Obama to put Education Secretary Arne Duncan on an “improvement plan” as a prelude to replacing him. The action was taken by the American Federation of Teachers, which is meeting in Los Angeles. It represents another marker in the long-running erosion of relations between organizations that represent instructors and the … 0

Jackson Street School, Northampton, bids adieu to its iconic play structure

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

NORTHAMPTON — Twenty-four years ago, Jackson Street School Principal Gwen Agna was among thousands of volunteers who, as she puts it, “lived” on school grounds for five days to build the wooden playscape that has become one of … 1

Northampton schools stay with MCAS, while Easthampton tries PARCC

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

NORTHAMPTON — Northampton students in Grades 3 to 8 will continue taking the MCAS standardized tests next spring rather than participating in tryouts of the Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Career (PARCC) tests. Easthampton students will take the PARCC tests. The state Department of Elementary … 0

South Hadley middle school teacher Pamela Howes connects students with poetry

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

SOUTH HADLEY — For 15 years, veteran middle school teacher Pamela Howes has found a way to ignite a love of poetry in her students. Her method is fairly straight-forward: Celebrate with a capital C. To that end, … 0

Amherst Regional Middle School club takes third place in state science fair

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

AMHERST — Members of the Amherst Regional Middle School Science Club took third place in the state middle school science fair in Worcester last weekend for their research testing the effects a video on student drinking had on University of Massachusetts students. Lee Borrell, Livia Tomasic, Zachary Ellis … 1

Amherst Regional Middle School students learn how to grow their own food

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

AMHERST — Five students at the Amherst Regional Middle School have been playing in the dirt each Thursday after school as University of Massachusetts student Kelsey Welborn guides them in the planting and harvesting of all sorts of … 0

Pioneer Valley Chinese Immersion Charter School celebrates as construction of addition begins in Hadley

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

HADLEY — Andrea Cummings of Shutesbury sent her son and daughter to the Pioneer Valley Chinese Immersion Charter School because she wanted them to understand a second language, but she did not know one herself. “It wasn’t a … 0

Easthampton High School students win second place in statewide contest to create video about importance of healthy breakfasts

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

EASTHAMPTON — Easthampton High School students Morgan Tabb, Leah Stabile, Kelly Boisjolie and Rachel Mastorakis, in class with multimedia teacher Eileen Claveloux, rose to the challenge of creating a video that illustrates why a healthy breakfast is important and earned second place in a statewide contest. In March, … 0

Task force to study equity in Amherst schools will meet Wednesday

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

AMHERST — A task force formed to study equity in the Amherst schools after repeated hostile incidents aimed at a black teacher will meet Wednesday. The session, which is open to the public, is scheduled for 5:30 p.m. in the Amherst Regional High School library. The 30-person committee, … 0

Unit about World War II, Holocaust inspires delivery of paper butterflies at Magic Wings conservatory in Deerfield

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

DEERFIELD — A new load of butterflies has emerged at the Magic Wings conservatory, but they came from a suitcase rather than cocoons. On their wings were messages of hope and scenes of tranquility, drawn by the hands … 0

Visiting artist Mary Jo Maichack helps Belchertown students gain confidence through storytelling

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

BELCHERTOWN — Fourth graders at the Chestnut Hill Community School got life lessons this spring from the seemingly simple act of telling tales. In the culmination of an eight-session residency by visiting artist Mary Jo Maichack, a minstrel … 0