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Mount Greylock Considering Universal Pre-Kindergarten

By Stephen DravisiBerkshires Staff
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Mount Greylock Regional School Committee Chairwoman Regina DiLego, left, and Superintendent Kimberley Grady follow public comment at the start of Tuesday's meeting.
WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — The Mount Greylock Regional School District may take a look at transitioning to universal pre-kindergarten as soon as the current academic year.
 
At last Tuesday's School Committee meeting, Superintendent Kimberley Grady broached the subject of removing the fees the district currently charges for programs at Williamstown Elementary School and Lanesborough Elementary School.
 
The topic is trending across the commonwealth, and the need is growing in the district, Grady said.
 
At the state level, the Massachusetts Association of School Committees is voting on a resolution that the group, "file or support legislation that will provide a sufficient appropriation for universal pre-K in Massachusetts and will achieve the actions necessary to provide access to good, quality universal pre-K for all children in Massachusetts."
 
Locally, Grady said she sees concerning trends of declining pre-kindergarten enrollment and assessment scores among incoming kindergarteners that indicate greater need.
 
And, in a Friday interview, she explained that the benefit of universal pre-K would outweigh the potential of lost revenue from doing away with the district's current fees.
 
"Many years ago, we made a change [to the pre-K program] that said if families met the requirements for free or reduced lunch, there'd be a sliding scale," Grady said. "Of 13 families in Lanesborough right now, only two pay. So what is the revenue? $18 a day for 175 days for two kids."
 
Of course, the hope is that by making pre-kindergarten universal, the district would see an increase in enrollment, but Grady said there would be budgetary offsets.
 
"If we can bring 45 more kids into the school district, that's 45 more kids I can count for regional reimbursement and transportation reimbursement," she said. "There wouldn't be a loss."
 
Grady said a switch to universal pre-K would require alterations in the district's policy.
 
"When I was talking with [district counsel] Adam Dupere, he said: If you're going to offer it free for everyone, you'll get families that will hold up a slot and only come one or two days a week," Grady said. "I'm going to talk to other superintendents and see how we can address that so it's not a place you can bring your child only one or two days a week. [Sporadic] attendance is not going to yield the results we want."
 
Education is not compulsory until first grade in Massachusetts.
 
Grady said if the universal pre-K switch can't happen this year, it will be one of her priorities for the 2020-21 school year.
 
In other business at Tuesday's marathon meeting, the committee approved an expenditure of up to $125,000 from the Williams Elementary School building endowment to address the heating system, including a needed replacement of the glycol that runs through the pipes at the elementary school.
 
The district's director of buildings and grounds told the committee that the liquid was bad and that failure to replace it before turning up the heat this fall could result in "dire consequences," including school closures.
 
Grady said that while there are no leaks in the system now and no current safety risks, the freezing point of the current glycol in the pipes was up to minus-1 degree.
 
A similar request was made on Tuesday to the Board of Selectmen in Lanesborough, which authorized an emergency request to replace the glycol at Lanesborough Elementary School, where the liquid's freeze point was up to 10-above, Grady said.
 
Buildings and Grounds Director Tim Sears indicated that deferred maintenance was an issue at the elementary schools.
 
"When you have a glycol system, typically at about three years, you put in an additive that will buy you another five years," he said. "At that point, you can do another additive. If those steps are skipped, your glycol is bad after a few years.
 
"You can get 15 years out of it if it's treated properly. I don't believe this was. It's in really bad shape. Other than that, it's just routine and part of our long-term maintenance plan. … It will be coming up here at Mount Greylock in about a year and a half. It's something that's so expensive not to take care of. It just makes good sense."
 
The emergency work at both elementary schools was scheduled to be completed over the four-day extended weekend for students created by Monday's Indigenous Peoples/Columbus Day holiday and a districtwide professional development day for faculty on Friday.
 

Tags: MGRSD,   preschool,   

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Mount Greylock Announces First Quarter Honor Roll

WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — Mount Greylock Regional School has announced its honor roll for the first quarter of the 2019-2020 school year.

Students are placed on the honor roll when their quarterly letter grades average a B or better, and when the student receives no grade lower than a B- in all graded classes. The student must be carrying a minimum of four graded courses to be eligible. Students who withdraw from a course are not eligible for the honor roll for one semester.

Grade 12

Gabriella Alvarez, Madeline Art, Miriam Bakija, Anthony Bossana, James Brannan, Tyler Canata, Barry Chhuon, Taylor Cornell, Elizabeth DeGraff, Khushi Devre, Julia Donati, Lily Edge, Sarah Egan, Brandon Fahlenkamp, Alexander Falk, Toby Foehl, Lucas Forman, Tarryn Gaherty, Brandi Gill, Logan Gould, Noah Greenfield, James Hetherington, Molly Howard, Julia Jammalo, Mitchell Jezouit, Joseph Jones, Jonah Kelly-Whitney, Saville Keyes, Natalia LeRoux, Aaron McKeon, Alexander Morin, Amelia Murphy, Ryan Narey, Nicole Overbaugh, Brooke Phelps, Charlotte Rauscher, Madison Ross, Grace Sanchez, Ciera Schwarzer, Anna Scott, Lucy Shepard, Malcolm Skinner, Brayden Smith, Emanuel Soza-Foias, Owen Tucker-Smith, Jaimey Vallieres, Xavier Vilaubi, Anna Welch, Finnian Welch, Spencer Zheng.

Grade 11

Dominique Auriemma, Delaney Babcock, Isabel Beauchamp, Aurora Bullett, Talia Cappadona, Croft Carter, Priya D'Souza, Briana Dowling, Nicholas Duda, Laura Dupuis, William Ellingwood, Michael Faulkner, Amanda Filiault, Samuel Garvey, Gabriel Gerry, Claire Hall, Emma Hayward, Madison Helm, Carolyn Jones, Isabella Kirby, Lily Lesieur, Oscar Low, Col McDermott, William McDonough, Charles McWeeny, Clarissa McWeeny, Victoria Melkonyan, Corban Miller, Julius Munemo, Erin O'Keefe, Leah Petricca, Alyssa Phelps, Joshua Polumbo, Benjamin Prescott, Jordan Rosier, Leo Rossitter, Jamieson Sanborn, Charlotte Sanford, Hazel Scullin, John Skavlem, Matthew Sorrell, William Starenko, Solomon Sutter, Mia VanDeurzen, Gina Wang, Malcolm Waynick, Ruth Weaver, Jacqueline Wells, Fiona Williams, Olivia Winters.

Grade 10

Zoe Armet, Henry Art, Adriel Benko, Saku Bergendahl, Edward Brannan, William Broadwell, Jillian Bump, John Cangelosi, Jack Catelotti, Cayden Conry, Josephine DeChaine, Maisie Dufour, Samantha Garzone, Ryan Goss, Jonah Hane, Luca Hirsch, Ava Howard, Simon Klompus, Rosario Larios-Sontay, Felicia LaRoche, Juliann Lawson, Madison Machaffie, Thomas Martin, Catherine McAllister, Eleanor McPartland, Jamie-Lee Meintjes, Sophia Mele, Troy Michalak, Livia Morales, Teague Murphy, Lukas Nordstrom, Derek Paris, Krishan Rai, Tashi Rai, Sarah Reynolds, Jamie Rhinemiller, Lily Rorke, Emma Sandstrom, Anna Schoorlemmer, Piper Schulman, Alayna Schwarzer, Mackenzie Sheehy, Ava Simon, Christian Sullivan, Katherine Swann, Alexis Toomey, Lauren Voorhies, Rona Wang, Anthony Welch, Malina Woodbury.

Grade Nine

Ainsley Abel, Bryn Angelini, Annabelle Art, Matilda Asch, Seamus Barnes, Elizabeth Bertolino, Matthew Bertolino, Henrik Bingemann, Elena Caplinger, Matteo Chang, Hannah Chase, Antoinette Dykes, Cailean Fippinger, Lainey Gill, Emma Gilooly, Emma Gray, Arthur Greenfield, Eamon Hetherington, Ezra Holzapfel, Lucy Igoe, Lily Jayko, Seth Lillie, Clarissa Louis, Elliot Louis, Isabella Mangano, Will Marsh, Emma Mathews, Patrick McConnell, Altan McIntosh, Emma Newberry, Liam O'Keefe, Zenalyssa Packer, Beatrice Pedroni, Sarah Polumbo, Christiane Rech, Juliet Robinson, Ernani Rosse, Andres Sanchez, Foster Savitsky, Noah Shin, Jennah Simpson, Kiersten Simpson, Jane Skavlem, Euphemia Skinner, Elizabeth Smith, Amelia Soler-Sala, Molly Sullivan, Rose Sutter, Samuel Tucker-Smith, Elissa Wong.

Grade Eight

Marlee Alpi, Ava Anagnos, Lex Anagnos, Thomas Art, Jude Bakija, Phoebe Barnes, Jude Barzousky, Liam Berryman, Mirabel Boyer, Jacqueline Brannan, Emma Brennan, Finnegan Carothers, Lily Catelotti, Sylvie Clowes, Lila Cohen-McFall, Angie Colandria, Makaylah Conrado, Julia DeChaine, Benjamin Dingman, Karlie Dowling, Noelle Dravis, Emily Dupuis, Isabella Garivaltis, Beatrice Garvey, Annabelle Gitterman, Julia Goh, Anabel Gonzales, Louis Gotlieb, Che Guerra, Emma Hane, Mia Harding, Phoebe Hughes, Jason Jaros, Talia Kapiloff, Faith Karl, Erin Keating, Ryan Keating, Jenner Kittle, Luka Lash-St. John, Svea-Marie Lawson, Cedric Lemaire, Caleb Low, Cecilia Malone, Grace Malone, Judge Martin, Lily McDermott, Quinn McDermott, Lucy McWeeny, Emily Mole, John Morales, George Munemo, Maggie Nichols, Emily Ouellette, Damon Pause, Gianna Pesce, Owen Petropulos, Alexa Politis, Quinlan Repetto, Declan Rogers, Celina Savage, Mason Sayers, Abigail Scialabba, Iris Semon Pike, Echo Simonetta-Trombley, Jasmine Skorupski, Parker Smith, Oliver Swabey, Jamie Sweren, Celia Szczepaniak, Macy Tidmarsh, Mitchell Waynick, Vincent Welch, Marcus Whalen-Loux, Grace Winters.

Grade Seven

Hope Abriel, MacKenzie Alcaro, Emily Alvarez, Marshall Baya, Jameson Bayliss, Jayne Beringer, Oliver Bingemann, Caelan Briggs, Claire Burrow, Miguel Camacho, Aleksei Chang, Nicholas Clairmont, Charlotte Coody, Olivia Cook, Ava Costa, Kaitlyn Dawson, Vera de Jong, Zoe Dupee, Brett Dupuis, Kaeya Durley, Mia Filiault, Ian Fredette, Soleigha Girard, Jacob Gladu, Katherine Goss, Brodie Hayden, Gavin Hetherington, Chase Hoey, Charlotte Holubar, William Igoe, Jaclynn Kastrinakis, Caliegh Kiernan, Noah Klompus, Malia Koffi, Connor Laliberte, Solana Lash-St. John, Eve LeBarron, Kelsey MacHaffie, Johnathan Mejias, Rafael Mellow-Bartels, Cameron Miller, Arthur Millet, Jake Newberry, Liam Noyes, Mai O'Connor, Natalia Palestino, Mia Patrick, Natalie Pesce, Jackson Powell, Erik Powell-Bechtel, Polly Rhie, Elias Robinson, Killian Scanlon, Katherine Shelsy, Simon Shin, Alec Sills, Ezekiel Singer, Christina Slick, Knowl Stroud, Kylie Sweren, Owen Taylor, Dylan Turner, Anna Wang, Cole Wetherell, Cael Whaley.

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