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Jim Palermo: Lifting the veil on charter school statistics in Massachusetts

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

The charter school debate has taken on new urgency now that Gov. Charlie Baker prioritized lifting the cap on charter schools during his State of the Commonwealth Address. He bolstered his endorsement by stating that Brooke Charter Schools in Roslindale, Mattapan and East Boston had higher scores on the English and Math PARRC Exams than those in the eight traditional public school districts he named. But as I have observed …

Philip Korman & Margaret Christie: CISA’s 2016 resolution: Local food for all

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

By February, many of us have already forgotten our New Year’s resolutions, especially in today’s world of ever-scrolling Facebook and Twitter feeds. It’s hard to get traction to make big change. At CISA, our 2016 resolution is to ensure more people have more access to local food, a campaign we are calling “Local Food for All.” With the help of our community, partners …

Natalia Muñoz: Puerto Rico’s long economic captivity

Monday, February 8, 2016

In 1898, the exhausted Spanish empire illegally gave away Puerto Rico to the United States at the end of the Spanish-America War. Gen. Nelson Miles, an architect of the massacre of indigenous peoples in the 19th century in this country, then invaded Puerto Rico and established a military outpost that led to the …

Global climate change touches down in an Alaskan native village

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

In the small town of Newtok, Alaska, a Yupik village of about 350 people, children once played on endless fields of frozen permafrost. Now, they splash in salt water pools and teeter on boardwalks as the permafrost below thaws and the Ninglick River chips away at the community. …

The millennial work ethic

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Dear previous employer, You may think that you have gotten the best of me, but you have not. I am a millennial. You may think that you have put me in a bad spot, but you have not. I am a millennial. You may think that you can …

Jay Fleitman: Off debate stage, GOP candidates come more fully to life

Monday, February 1, 2016

I am writing this column on the day before the Iowa caucuses and it is being published after those results are in. On both sides of the aisle, the televised candidate debates will have had a major impact on the results of the voting. These debates serve our …

Renee Moss: Lives of the ‘Bigs’ and ‘Littles’

Sunday, January 31, 2016

When you were a kid, was there an adult in your life — someone besides your mom or dad — who was a mentor? Perhaps it was a teacher, coach, librarian or scout leader, or someone who shared your passion for piano or model airplanes. If you were …

Ramon S. Torrecilha: Why new Westfield State president sees a ‘pivotal time’ for school

Friday, January 29, 2016

It was my privilege on my first day as the new president of Westfield State University to attend Gov. Charlie Baker’s first State of the Commonwealth address. Gov. Baker spoke to the importance of education at every level, …

Rutherford H. Platt: A triumph of American legislative bipartisanship turns 25

Thursday, January 28, 2016

On a recent frosty morning on my way into the medical office building at 190 Nonotuck St. in Florence, I encountered a woman trying to help her elderly blind mother into a wheelchair outside the building’s main entrance. It was challenging enough to help the older woman out …

Don Robinson: A novelist’s entrancing tale of liberty unbound

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Every once in a while, an amazing work of imagination forces us to think anew about how toxic effects have spread throughout our culture and what we must do to atone for them. The 2013 movie, “Twelve Years a Slave” was such a work. This Christmas our nephew …

Zion Scott Barbour: Waking up in Northampton to racism’s wounds

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

The Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. Day “Black Lives Matter” banner-raising was supposed to be a huge step forward in equality in Northampton. Sadly many, including myself, feel as if the people of Northampton didn’t even lift their …

Marian Kelner: Trickle-down at the bird feeder and other politically squirrely behavior

Monday, January 25, 2016

For many winters I have spent considerable mental energy trying to figure out — as tens of millions are probably doing at this very moment — how to keep squirrels from dominating the bird feeder. Day after day, I have watched from the sidelines as dominant squirrels arrived …

Adriana Piantedosi: Looking for racial justice, not apologies

Monday, January 25, 2016

Friday before last, I drove through downtown Northampton and noticed that City Hall has put up a “Black Lives Matter” banner. And then I looked down and saw this older white guy holding up a sign that said “All Lives Matter and I won’t Apologize.” He was standing …