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MSBA Approves New Taconic High School Building Project
By Andy McKeever, iBerkshires Staff
12:23PM / Wednesday, June 03, 2015
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PITTSFIELD, Mass. — The MSBA approved funding the Taconic High School project.   The Massachusetts School Building Authority's Board of Directors voted on Wednesday morniong in favor of granting the city up to $74.2 million to build a new school on the existing Valentine Road site.    "Upon completion, the new school in Pittsfield will provide a modern learning environment for the city's students," state Treasurer Deborah Goldberg said in a release Wednesday afternoon.   "Our goal is create the best space to deliver the district's educational commitments and goals."   The City Council unanimously approved the $120.8 million

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Pittsfield Residents Air Concerns About BCC Turf Field
By Jack Guerino, iBerkshires Staff
02:39AM / Tuesday, June 02, 2015
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PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Environmental and health concerns were aired Monday night over a community turf field to be constructed on the Berkshire Community College grounds.

Residents filed into the Susan B. Anthony Lounge on campus for the information session regarding the development of the $2.6 million artificial field being funded by donations and state and city funds.

Resident Carol Zullo said one of the biggest concerns was the alleged health hazards of the rubber "crumbs" used as infill, which many believe can cause cancer when athletes come in contact with them or if they find their way into the water supply.

"It has the great potential of risk both environmentally

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Lanesborough Projecting Drop in School Choice Enrollment
By Andy McKeever, iBerkshires Staff
01:26AM / Tuesday, June 02, 2015
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LANESBOROUGH, Mass. — The school choice revenue for 2016 is expected to come in lower than anticipated.   Principal Ellen Boshe said on Monday that the school is expecting $100,000 in school-choice revenues, which is $30,000 lower than anticipated in the budget. Each student to choice in from another district brings $5,000 of aid with him or her.   This year, 10 additional spots were opened and in crafting the budget, it was assumed six would be filled to give a $30,000 boost to the budget.   "We know we definitely have 20 students," Boshe said of the total projected school choice enrollment. "I don't think we'll be close to the

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Warren: Grit, Determination Will Get BCC Graduates to Next Goal
By Andy McKeever, iBerkshires Staff
11:14PM / Friday, May 29, 2015
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PITTSFIELD, Mass. — College wasn't always in the cards for U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren.   When she was growing up her family struggled to pay the bills. After high school she went to college but dropped out just two years in and started a family. Eventually, she paid $50 a semester at the University of Houston to become the first of her family with a degree. Her academic path would take her Rutgers School of Law-Newark and finally as professor of economics and finance at Harvard.   Both her background and education would inform her establishment of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, designed to protect and inform average Americans.   "I watch big banks

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New Pittsfield Program Feeds Elementary Pupils For Free
By Andy McKeever, iBerkshires Staff
03:21AM / Thursday, May 28, 2015
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PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Every elementary school student will receive free breakfast and lunch next year.   The School Department has joined the federal Community Eligibility Provision program designated for districts with high levels of poverty. The program ups the U.S. Department of Agriculture's reimbursement for meals provided at participating schools.   Participating districts must have more than 40 percent enrollment from low-income households to be eligible and the higher percentage of low-income students in a school or district, the higher the reimbursements.   "Our eight elementary schools qualify for 100 percent reimbursement for all meals," said

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C-SPAN to Broadcast BCC Speech by Sen. Warren
01:57PM / Wednesday, May 27, 2015
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PITTSFIELD, Mass. – C-SPAN will tape and air U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren's keynote speech at Berkshire Community College's 55th commencement Exercises on Friday at Tanglewood in Lenox.

Warren was elected to the Senate in 2012 and is recognized as one of the nation's top experts on bankruptcy and the financial pressures facing middle class families. She has introduced the Bank on Students Emergency Loan Refinancing Act, which, if passed, would allow borrowers to refinance their public and/or private student loans at lower interest rates.

"We are pleased that C-SPAN selected Senator Elizabeth Warren's keynote speech at Berkshire Community College's

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