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Dire Outlook for School Budgets Across Commonwealth
By Stephen Dravis, iBerkshires Staff
02:36AM / Friday, May 15, 2020
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BOSTON — School districts across the commonwealth face a "dreadful" situation with regard to their fiscal year 2021 budget, legislators were told on Wednesday.   The Joint Committee on Education took more than four hours of testimony from state education officials, school administrators, teachers, parents and other stakeholders in an virtual oversight hearing on "Remote Learning and the Status of K-12 Education."   Although much of the testimony centered on the commonwealth's and districts' efforts to implement remote learning plans on the fly in the wake of March's closure of school buildings, the conversation frequently strayed to

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Pittsfield School Superintendent Gives Remote Learning Update
By Jack Guerino, iBerkshires Staff
01:26AM / Friday, May 15, 2020
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PITTSFIELD, Mass. — School administrators have offered households remote learning support but see more challenges on the horizon.   Superintendent Jason McCandless told the School Committee on Wednesday that although they have provided 3,000 students with school-owned laptops there are still many families without an internet connection.   "We need to find a way to cross that digital bridge that has some students connected and with equipment and other students isolated," he said.   He said if the city were to become an internet provider that would solve the issue because students could be provided the internet like any other utility. Pittsfield last year got a

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Pittsfield School Budget Anticipates $1.4M in Cuts
By Jack Guerino, iBerkshires Staff
03:53AM / Thursday, May 14, 2020
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PITTSFIELD, Mass. — School administrators on Wednesday outlined one vision of a level-funded budget that could eliminate just under 30 positions.   Superintendent Jason McCandless presented this version of a proposed $65,113,700 spending plan for fiscal 2021 budget that has been built with little state aid information.    "I am sorry for this financial desert we are kind of wandering through," McCandless told the School Committee during the virtual meeting. "I feel like Moses in the wilderness in speaking because we know that the news is bad. We just don't know how bad, but this would be a vision of getting us to a final budget number that is level

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Berkshire County Selectmen's Association Awards Scholarships
Staff Reports,
04:30PM / Tuesday, May 12, 2020
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WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — The Berkshire County Selectmen's Association last week announced the award of scholarships to three Berkshire County high school students.   Hoosac Valley's Alannah McGrath of Cheshire, Mount Everett's Madeleine Soudant of Great Barrington and Berkshire Arts and Technology Charter Public School's Sarah deBethune of Pittsfield were recognized the BCSA, which is composed of boards from 30 county towns.   "The organization engages in advocacy and best practice sharing to improve the functioning of local government," said Andy Hogeland of the Williamstown Select Board. "Our scholarship program is part of our goal of promoting

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Wall Street's 'COVID Crash' Impacts Mount Greylock Field Disussion
By Stephen Dravis, iBerkshires Staff
04:10AM / Tuesday, May 12, 2020
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WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — Plans to build an artificial turf field at Mount Greylock Regional School may be sidetracked by a global pandemic that has dealt a serious blow to the funding source eyed for the project.   Last week at a meeting of the School Committee's Finance Subcommittee, Superintendent Kimberley Grady reported that officials from Williams College had contacted the district to check in about what commitments the district already has made for spending from the college's endowment.   "I think the School Committee needs to have a frank conversation about what the changes to the economic landscape mean to future capital projects or ideas about how to spend

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UPDATED: Preschool, Kindergarten Registrations Scheduled Around County
04:03PM / Monday, May 11, 2020
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Berkshire County schools are scheduling and re-scheduling preschool and kindergarten registration dates and procedures for the 2020-21 school year. Schools can send their information to info@iberkshires.com to be included on this list.

All students, regardless of race, religion, color, sex, gender identity, religion, national origin, sexual orientation, disability or homelessness, have equal access to the general education program and the full range of any occupational, vocational programs offered by public school districts.

 

Clarksburg

Clarksburg parents can now begin to register their youngsters for. Children must be 5 years old as of Aug. 31. Call the school office at

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Mount Greylock to Ask Towns to Allow Stabilization Fund
By Stephen Dravis, iBerkshires Staff
03:58AM / Monday, May 11, 2020
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WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — The Mount Greylock Regional School Committee is set to ask its member towns to allow the regional school district to establish a stabilization fund.   The committee's Finance Subcommittee last week approved the language for a warrant article that will be sent to Lanesborough and Williamstown for their annual town meetings.   If passed by the towns, the stabilization fund, an idea previously approved by the full School Committee, would help the district save money for future capital expenses at the middle-high school.   Future School Committees could appropriate funds from the stabilization account by a two-thirds vote "for any purpose for

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Mount Greylock Names Finalists for Principal Post
By Stephen Dravis, iBerkshires Staff
04:32PM / Saturday, May 09, 2020
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WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — The Mount Greylock Regional School District on Friday evening announced the two finalists for the position of principal at the middle-high school.   Current Mount Greylock Vice Principal Jake Schutz and Kristen Thompson, an assistant principal at New Mexico's West Mesa High School, were advanced as finalists by the 18-member search committee, which conducted its second round of interviews on Thursday, according to an email to the community from Superintendent Kimberley Grady.   Schutz has been at Mount Greylock for about seven years, including a year he spent on deployment in Afghanistan with the Massachusetts National Guard.   Shortly after

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Mount Greylock Schools Seek Parents' Input to Improve Remote Learning
By Stephen Dravis, iBerkshires Staff
01:24AM / Thursday, May 07, 2020
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WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — The Mount Greylock Regional School District wants to hear back from families about the challenges of remote learning during the COVID-19 pandemic.   Superintendent Kimberley Grady used last week's School Committee meeting to remind listeners of a survey she sent out on April 25 and talk about its importance in the near and short term.   "This will help us adjust things between now and June 16 and also help us with future plans," Grady said. "When [the school closure] happened, we didn't have a full-on remote learning plan ready to go. We've been working with the teachers and other superintendents around the

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Richardson Recognized Twice During MCLA's Athletic Celebration
By Stephen Dravis, iBerkshires.com Sports
07:00PM / Tuesday, May 05, 2020
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NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — Megan Richardson of Adams wrapped up two year-ending honors Tuesday as the Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts celebrated its 2019-20 student-athletes.   Richardson, a graduate of Hoosac Valley High School and an MCLA senior, was recognized in a Twitter poll for recording the Best Moment of the Year and Best Fall Moment.   For entire year, the top moment was Richardson's shutout in goal for MCLA's women's soccer team on senior day.   That afternoon against Framingham State, Richardson made 15 saves to preserve a 1-0 win, just the third of the season for the Trailblazers.   Richardson finished her career at MCLA with 596

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