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Carr Hardware Donates PPE to Berkshire Schools
11:01AM / Wednesday, October 21, 2020
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PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Carr Hardware's "Round-up for the Schools" campaign donated over $8,500 in personal protective equipment to three local school districts.   "We are a community business that believes in giving back, it's just part of our core culture," President of Carr Hardware Bart Raser said. "Our kids and schools need our help more than ever and school safety is paramount. We are thrilled to be in a position to do our part and appreciative of the generosity of our customers who supported our teachers and our students."   Tuesday, Carr Hardware representatives made the rounds and delivered PPE to three local school districts: North

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Berkshire Community College To Celebrate 60th Anniversary Virtually
10:19AM / Wednesday, October 21, 2020
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PITTSFIELD, Mass. — In 2020, Berkshire Community College (BCC) turns 60 years old.    To celebrate its 60th anniversary, the College has partnered again with Pittsfield Community Television (PCTV) to broadcast an hour-long anniversary special on Thursday, Oct. 22 at 6:00 PM.   Founded in 1960, BCC is the first community college established by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.    The 60th celebration video is made up of a compilation of interviews with faculty and staff, a compilation of shorts about various academic programs, spotlights on families that met at BCC, a conversation with Robert Boland for whom the theatre at BCC is named, and a look at the

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Mount Greylock Superintendent Succession Topic in Exec Session
By Stephen Dravis, iBerkshires Staff
01:03AM / Wednesday, October 21, 2020
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WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — Executive session minutes from the Mount Greylock Regional School Committee show that the panel did discuss a succession plan for the district's superintendent behind closed doors, and the minutes shed light on the reason for the superintendent's subsequent departure.   In mid-July, iBerkshires.com filed an Open Meeting Law complaint against the committee alleging that, "at the very least, the School Committee's deliberations on July 1 strayed into territory not covered by the stated exception to the Open Meeting Law."   That meeting was one of four held in executive session for the stated purpose of conducting contract

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Mount Greylock Group Works to Promote Inclusion in 'Incredibly Undiverse Building'
By Stephen Dravis, iBerkshires Staff
01:16AM / Monday, October 19, 2020
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WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — A Mount Greylock Regional School committee charged with exploring issues of diversity, equity and inclusion last week began a conversation with the wider community about how to make the middle/high school a more welcoming place for all residents.   The DEI Working Group of the Mount Greylock School Council hosted a 90-minute virtual conference on Tuesday attended by more than a dozen community residents, including several with ties to other groups addressing the same issues.   "So many of us talked about our commitment to racial diversity, cultural diversity, special ed … we also reached out to the GSA [formerly known as the Gay-Straight

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Mount Greylock School Committee Moves Forward on Artificial Turf Project
By Stephen Dravis, iBerkshires Staff
06:09AM / Saturday, October 17, 2020
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WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — A divided Mount Greylock Regional School Committee on Friday voted to move forward on a track to putting an artificial turf field out to bid.   On a vote of 4-2, the committee agreed to spend the next week reviewing a year-old list of value engineering items associated with its athletic fields project and to vote as soon as next Thursday to pay its architect to do the detailed design work needed to rebid a project that already came in over budget in the fall of 2019.   After nearly four hours of a meeting that began at noon and after hearing public comments that ran 9-to-1 against making a decision on Friday, the School Committee decided to ignore its

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Berkshire Museum To Participate In National School Readiness Project
03:42PM / Thursday, October 15, 2020
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PITTSFIELD, Mass. — The Berkshire Museum was selected to participate in the Building a National Network of Museums and Libraries for School Readiness Project

As part of an agreement with the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) awarded to Boston Children's Museum to expand its existing School Readiness through Partnerships program to three new states, the Berkshire Museum has been selected to engage in the Building a National Network of Museums and Libraries for School Readiness project.    The museum's programming during the project will focus on developing and testing object-based mobile museum units in non-traditional, community settings. This

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BCC Transforms Jonathan Edwards Library Into Learning Common
By Brittany Polito, iBerkshires Staff
03:54AM / Thursday, October 15, 2020
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A book sanitizer has been installed to aid in getting texts quickly and safely back on the shelves.    PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Berkshire Community College is renovating the Jonathan Edwards Library into a technologically advanced "learning common" for students.   The goal is to transform the space, which before only offered library services, to become the primary academic hub of the campus.     Under the direction of Dean of the Library and Learning Commons Richard Felver, BCC has brought academic technology, tutoring, and testing into the existing space. While the library staff is already a strong support to students, having all of these

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Local Officials Question State's Color-Coding on COVID-19 Map
By Stephen Dravis, iBerkshires Staff
01:19AM / Thursday, October 15, 2020
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WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — A near miss for the local public school district has sharpened calls for changes in the way the commonwealth assesses COVID-19 spread at the local level.   Steven Miller, a Williams College mathematics professor and member of the Mount Greylock Regional School Committee, has long been critical of the red-yellow-green-gray system the Department of Public Health created this summer to categorize municipalities.   As it happens, Williamstown was categorized as yellow, meaning it had an averaged daily COVID-19 case rate of between four and eight (per 100,000 people) for two weeks at the end of September.   That meant the first classification of

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Mount Greylock School Committee Debates Public Access to Meeting Packets
By Stephen Dravis, iBerkshires Staff
04:01AM / Tuesday, October 13, 2020
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WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — The interim superintendent of the Mount Greylock Regional School District on Thursday advised the School Committee to continue denying the public access to information lest the committee's work become part of the "public discourse."   Last month, the committee heard a public comment drafted by iBerkshires.com reporter Stephen Dravis that questioned why the body refuses to post supporting material for topics under discussion at public meetings prior to the meeting.   The district's past practice has been to post background material — like a district policy to be voted on in a meeting or a draft budget — after the meeting has

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Mount Greylock School Committee Schedules Friday Meeting to Settle Turf Field Question
By Stephen Dravis, iBerkshires Staff
06:03AM / Saturday, October 10, 2020
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WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — The Mount Greylock Regional School Committee could decide as soon as next Friday to put an artificial turf field project out to bid.   The committee has called a special noon meeting for Oct. 16 with the sole purpose of potentially putting to bed an issue that has consumed hours of discussion at the committee level, months of work by a subcommittee the elected officials convened and years of conversations in the community.   "We can try as much as we can to try to find common ground. But at the end of the day, there's going to be a difference of opinion as to what should be done, and it's our job as elected officials to take the vote,"

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