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Mount Greylock School Committee to Pick Project at Thursday Meeting
By Stephen Dravis, iBerkshires Staff
02:17PM / Wednesday, July 29, 2015
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WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — The Mount Greylock Regional School Committee plans Thursday to vote which of three building options it wants to advance to the Massachusetts School Building Authority for further study.   The School Committee will hold a joint meeting with the region's School Building Committee at 5:30 p.m. in the Mount Greylock Meeting Room.   The School Committee will consider the most up-to-date information from its architect and owner's project manager about the two addition/renovation plans and one new building project that are currently on the table.   Then the School Building Committee will vote on one design to recommend to the School

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Potential Disruption of Mount Greylock Renovation Raises Concerns
By Stephen Dravis, iBerkshires Staff
02:12AM / Sunday, July 26, 2015
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WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — The impact of a school building project on taxpayers was just one consideration of the Mount Greylock School Committee on Thursday evening.   The impact on education — in the near future and decades down the road — remains a high priority.   The School Committee and School Building Committee held a joint meeting Thursday at the junior-senior high school. It is the last time the panels will meet before an anticipated July 30 School Committee vote on which of three projects to select as the district's "preferred design option" to send to the Massachusetts School Building Authority.   Two of the three designs still on

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Mount Greylock Building Project's Tax Impact Discussed
By Stephen Dravis, iBerkshires Staff
01:02AM / Friday, July 24, 2015
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WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — The Mount Greylock Regional School Building Committee on Thursday continued its evaluation of evolving designs for potential building projects and got its first look at what those projects could potentially cost.   The School Building and School committees held their second straight joint meeting in the meeting room of the junior-senior high school.   Although the largest part of the meeting was focused on the three designs that the School Committee hopes to narrow to one choice in one week's time, the cost estimates gave residents their first, preliminary idea of what it might cost to either renovate or rebuild Mount Greylock.   Building

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Lanesborough Combining Third Grade, Splitting Kindergarten
By Andy McKeever, iBerkshires Staff
03:31AM / Thursday, July 23, 2015
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LANESBOROUGH, Mass. — Principal Martin McEvoy is combining two third-grade classes into one and splitting the kindergarten class into two.   The third grade has 26 students and the kindergarten has 25. McEvoy said kindergarten students are experiencing school for their first time and pose more difficult challenges than third-graders.    "Twenty-five students in a kindergarten class is very challenging for the kids for many different reasons," McEvoy said.   This particular third-grade class is also outperforming all other grades when it comes to academic benchmarks and fewer students are on individualized education and 504 plans, he said.   Last

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Coaching Legend Russo to Coach Hoosac Boys
By Stephen Dravis, iBerkshires Staff
11:04PM / Tuesday, July 21, 2015
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CHESHIRE, Mass. -- Mike Russo says he is looking forward this fall to coaching soccer ... and just coaching soccer.   "The recruiting is gone, and I don't miss that at all," Russo said Wednesday about taking over the boys team at Hoosac Valley Middle and High School. "It gives me an opportunity to teach and coach."   Russo did a great job at both -- and recruiting, too -- for 36 years at Williams College, where he retired after the 2014 season.   Through colleague Blair Dils, the head boys coach at Mount Greylock, Russo became aware of an opening at Hoosac Valley and decided to look into it.   "I guess I could play golf every day, but I have

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Williamstown Elementary to Add Assistant Principal
By Stephen Dravis, iBerkshires Staff
02:01PM / Tuesday, July 21, 2015
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WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — The Williamstown School Committee on Monday approved the creation of an assistant principal's position at the K-through-6 school.   The change was prompted by a suggestion from the school's new superintendent, said School Committee Chairman Dan Caplinger on Tuesday morning.   "When Doug Dias came in, one of his first questions was, for a school the size of WES, who the assistant principal was," Caplinger said. "When he found out we didn't have one, he was surprised by that."   The school has been bucking the declining regional trend the last couple of years with increased enrollment — partly because of recent

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Meetings Set to Discuss Sustainable Mt. Greylock School Project
04:47PM / Monday, July 20, 2015
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WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — The Mount Greylock School Building Committee invites the public to share its ideas on how to incorporate sustainable elements into the design of the school building project.

The committee, which currently is choosing between two renovation/addition plans and one new construction design to advance to the Massachusetts School Building Authority, will host a "green building charrette" on Wednesday and Thursday, July 22 and 23, at the school.

"The committee wants to tap the talent and creativity of community members," Chairman Mark Schiek said in a news release announcing the workshop.

The charrette will be facilitated by

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Mount Greylock School Building Committee Narrows Design Options
By Stephen Dravis, iBerkshires Staff
01:36AM / Monday, July 13, 2015
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LANESBOROUGH, Mass. — And then there were three.   On Thursday evening, the Mount Greylock Regional School Building Committee decided to take one of the addition/renovation options on its designer's list out of the running for a potential building project.   And with just three weeks left to decide whether it will forward an add/reno or new build to the Massachusetts School Building Authority, the committee likely will benefit from the narrower field.   "We would highly advocate to reduce the number of options," Lee Dore of Dore & Whittier told the committee.   Dore & Whittier is the school district's owner's project

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Berkshire School Committees Considering District Consolidations
By Andy McKeever, iBerkshires Staff
11:04PM / Monday, June 22, 2015
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LEE, Mass. — This year more than 60 teachers countywide could lose their jobs because of budget cuts.

School districts from Great Barrington to North Adams are struggling to support the ever-growing costs of public education.

With high school enrollment decreasing to what is eyed to be about 4,689 in just 10 years, school committee members across the county are wondering if now is the time to consolidate the more than a dozen high schools.

A coalition of school committees met with state legislators Monday in forum about what needs to be done to curb the cost of education spending.

"This is a conversation we probably should have had five years ago," said state Rep. William

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Lanesborough Considering Additional Kindergarten Class
By Andy McKeever, iBerkshires Staff
02:37AM / Friday, June 19, 2015
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LANESBOROUGH, Mass. — The first decision the new School Committee faces will be what to do with the kindergarten class.

Principal Ellen Boshe said she was concerned with the size of the kindergarten class and that any additions during the summer could pose a problem. She is asking the School Committee to break the one class of 25 students into two.

"That's huge," Boshe said of the class. "I'm really concerned with the kindergarten at 25 ... my recommendation would be to split that into two."

Right now, there is only one section in kindergarten, first grade, and fifth grade. The other single sections are at 15 for first grade and 21 in fifth grade. There

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