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Schools

Northampton officials reluctant to make budget cuts needed for later high school start time

Friday, February 27, 2015

NORTHAMPTON — Superintendent John Provost said Thursday night that he does not believe a later high school start time would be worth the cuts in arts, athletics or Advanced Placement courses needed to pay for it. “The benefit of a late start notwithstanding, these cuts would be devastating to students,” he told the School Committee. Although there was no final decision, board members generally agreed that implementing the long-debated later …

Principal calls cyberbullies worse than Iraq insurgents

Thursday, February 26, 2015

WINCHENDON (ap) — A Massachusetts high school principal said cyberbullies who targeted some of his students are worse than the insurgents he fought in Iraq and vowed the anonymous posters would be found and punished. Joshua Romano, principal of Murdock Middle/High School in Winchendon and an Iraq War veteran, logged on to the school’s Twitter account to warn perpetrators who attacked some students’ …

James Palermo of Southampton battles state education department for release of Program for International Student Assessment test results

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

SOUTHAMPTON — Jim Palermo is no stranger to raising questions, nor to encouraging others to do the same. So when the retired workers’ rights advocate and grandfather of 17 came across a report in December 2013 declaring Massachusetts students to be among the world’s highest scorers in reading, math and science, he wondered …

Area briefs

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Northampton TEACHER APPRECIATION LUNCHEON: The annual “teacher appreciation luncheon” will be held from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Monday in the Northampton High School cafeteria. Every year, parents prepare lunch for the teachers on a professional development day. To sign up to bring a dish, visit the event’s …

Northampton High School students battle ‘zombie apocalypse’ by turning off devices for a day

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

NORTHAMPTON — What would happen if high school students turned off their phones and iPads for an entire school day? At Northampton High School, the result was pretty simple: they talked to each other — face to face. …

Smith Vocational Agricultural High School cited for continuing problems with heat, condition of buildings

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

NORTHAMPTON — Smith Vocational and Agricultural High School continues to have problems meeting accreditation health and safety standards, with complaints including inadequate heating during the winter and a leaking roof in the library. Superintendent Jeffrey Peterson agreed Tuesday that there are problems and said the school, which opened …

Universal access sought in pre-kindergarten bill

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

BOSTON — Backers of a proposal to make pre-kindergarten programs available to all 3- and 4-years olds in the state regardless of family income said it would help narrow the academic achievement gap that exists among students from varying socio-economic backgrounds. The bill, unveiled on Tuesday, would allow …

Northampton High School class cooks up creations in edible book contest

Friday, January 16, 2015

NORTHAMPTON — Giving a new twist to book reports, a Northampton High School cooking class held its first-ever edible book contest this week. An edible book is a three-dimensional visual representation of a book made mainly of food …

Granby school superintendent Isabelina Rodriguez to leave in mid-March for job in Connecticut

Friday, January 16, 2015

GRANBY — School Superintendent Isabelina Rodriguez will leave the post she has held for four years in mid-March to take a job in Connecticut. The move means Rodriguez, 53, will terminate her contract — set to run through …

Proposal to regionalize all grades in Amherst-Pelham School District moves closer to vote by towns

Thursday, January 15, 2015

AMHERST — After years of planning, residents of Pelham, Leverett, Shutesbury and Amherst may have a chance to vote on a proposal to create a regional school district for all grades. A Regional Agreement Working Group, established in 2013, made recommendations Tuesday to the current regional district’s school …

Revenue squeeze likely to force layoffs in Amherst-Pelham Regional School District

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

AMHERST — Facing a $930,000 budget gap, the Amherst-Pelham Regional School District is looking to eliminate the equivalent of 17.5 full-time positions at the same time as school taxes rise in three of the district’s four towns, according to a budget report distributed at Tuesday’s committee meeting. The …

Rotting trees to come down on property used by Smith School off Burts Pit Road in Northampton

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

NORTHAMPTON — Sections of the 282-acre property off Burts Pit Road used by Smith Vocational and Agricultural High School will be temporarily closed to the public starting Wednesday, when work begins to remove six rotting trees from the park. Superintendent Jeffrey Peterson asks that people observe safety precautions …

Worthington enrolls students, seeks to hire principal as it plans to reopen public elementary school

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

WORTHINGTON — The town’s School Committee has started enrolling students and is seeking a principal as it works to reopen a public elementary school in town by September. The R.H. Conwell Elementary School served the children of Worthington as a public school until 2010, when it was closed …