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Williamstown Town Meeting Passes School Budget With Protest Cut

Town meeting on Tuesday night approved the elementary school's requested fiscal 2017 budget- after cutting it by a symbolic $27. There had been concerns that the $6 million budget would be "held hostage" by constituents angry at the reductions made to the school's Side-By-Side special education preschool program. But opponents expressed their displeasure with an amendment that cut the school's funding by $1 for every year that Side-By-Side has existed.

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Williamstown Fin Comm Advises Amended School Budget to Town Meeting

The Finance Committee on Monday voted 6-2 to recommend that the annual town meeting approve the amended elementary school budget passed last week by the School Committee. After more than two hours of discussion that frequently veered off into conversations on pedagogy despite the best efforts of Chairman Michael Sussman, a majority of the panel decided not to second guess the conclusion of the administration and School Committee and instead endorse the request for an additional $58,424.

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Williamstown School Committee OKs Third Half-Day Preschool Section

The Elementary School Committee on Wednesday approved a plan to add a third half-day session to the school's Side-By-Side special education preschool program. In a unanimous vote, the committee agreed to ask the town for an additional $58,424 on the budget it approved earlier this spring. The school is seeking about $6.14 million from the town for fiscal 2017, a 6.35 percent increase over this year.

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Williamstown Seeking Third Half-Day Section to Preschool

Williamstown Elementary School is adding a third half-day section to its Side-By-Side preschool program, a move school officials hope will ease some of the concerns that have riled the community in recent weeks. Superintendent Douglas Dias said on Friday that the decision to add the third section was driven by a desire to accommodate all families who had applied for the program.

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Letter: Transparency Critical in Preschool Discussions

Seeing these two meetings unfold at the nearly the same time, (1 hour or so at the Planning Board, 45 minutes at School Committee meeting, and then back to Planning Board for another hour) I was struck by their similarities and their startling differences.

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Letter: Moving Forward on Full Day Side-By-Side

The following are some thoughts on the recent Williamstown Elementary School Committee meeting on April 28. While I am on the High School committee, my comments are those of an individual.

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Advocates Continue to Push on Williamstown Preschool Program

Four members of the Williamstown School Committee on Thursday again explained their reasons for supporting a fiscal 2017 budget that includes a reduction to the school's popular preschool program. At a special meeting originally rescheduled from April 13, the committee members explained why they did not oppose the school administration's decision to eliminate the full-day option for Side-By-Side.

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Williamstown Superintendent: Preschool will Meet Children's Needs

Budget season for Williamstown Elementary School has seen a number of twists and turns since an initial budget presentation to the School Committee back in February. But one thing remains consistent: the decision to scale back the school's prekindergarten program by eliminating a full-day option.

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Williamstown Superintendent Explains School Cuts to Parents

Williamstown Elementary School Superintendent Douglas Dias faced a crowd of about 70 people on Thursday evening to explain the constraints that are shaping the district's fiscal 2017 budget. The elementary school is facing cuts that include two teachers, four paraprofessionals, several enrichment programs and the reduction of its pre-kindergarten Side by Side program from the current full-day program to two half-day sessions.

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Pittsfield Housing Authority: Worcester's Program Not A Fit Here

"Let's look at them as a individual cases." — Charles Smith

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Kindergarten, Pre-K Registration Open in Savoy

Screening for children entering preschool or kindergarten will be held on April 29 at the school. Call 413-743-1992 to schedule a screening appointment.

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Adams-Cheshire Sets Preschool Screenings

Appointments can be made by calling the Special Services Office at 413-743-5202 ext. 1107, Monday through Friday between 8 a.m. and 3:30 p.m. by Friday, March 13.

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Berkshire County Head Start Registering Children for 2015-16 School Year

Income verification is needed with a completed application and eligible children are accepted on a first come, first served basis.

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St. Stanislaus Preschoolers Learn a Thing Or Two From Dr. Seuss

"It is teaching them about imagination and getting them excited about the reading aspect of it." — Lorry Delmolino

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North Adams Preschool Service Project Touches on Illness, Empathy

"My biggest pull away from this is teaching children empathy towards others." — Rosemarie Dzierga

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Clarksburg School Committee OKs Pre-K Feasibility Study

"I still would want to move full steam ahead on the VFW. I don't think anyone wants to put the pre-K aside another year." — Jeffrey Levanos

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Clarksburg Researching Relocation of VFW for Preschool

"Repurposing it is highly desirable and I think we can meet a lot of the community's needs. It seems like a win, win, win." — Carl McKinney

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