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McCandless Sets Record Straight on Rumored Incident at Herberg
Staff Reports,
02:13PM / Friday, November 03, 2017
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PITTSFIELD, Mass. — A personnel manner took on a life of its own on social media Thursday and Friday.   On Thursday, school administrators at Herberg Middle School dealt with a "personnel" matter with an employee. The district took steps to shield the children from seeing or hearing what was happening. Those tidbits of information then grew as the conversation about the matter spread on Facebook, dovetailing into accusations of teacher misconduct and arrests.   "It had absolutely nothing to do with children and no arrests were made," Superintendent Jason McCandless said on Friday. "There was not a single student involved and there were no allegations

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Miss Hall's School Students Recognized in National Merit Scholarship Competition
01:58PM / Friday, November 03, 2017
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PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Miss Hall's School seniors Lin Hou, of Shenzhen, China, and Elizabeth Tagliaferro of Pittsfield have been named Commended Students in the 2018 National Merit Scholarship Program.

The designation means that Hou and Tagliaferro placed among the top 5 percent of the approximately 1.6 million students who entered the 2018 competition for National Merit Scholarships, according to the National Merit Scholarship Corporation, which conducts the program.

The designation recognizes the students’ academic promise and their exceptional performance on the 2016 Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test, or PSAT/NMSQT.

In addition to their academic

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Girls Inc. Launches 'Eureka!' Program, Focus On STEM Education
By Andy McKeever, iBerkshires Staff
04:15PM / Thursday, November 02, 2017
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In honor of the launch of the new program, Mayor Linda Tyer presented Brigham Center CEO Kelly Marion a copy of 'She Persisted' written by Chelsea Clinton. PITTSFIELD, Mass. — The students who stand out for BCC's Dean of Academic Affairs Charles Kaminski are the ones who come in with bold dreams.   It is the women who come from a family of nurses and want to take that a step forward and become biochemists. Or the girl who starts out thinking about becoming a teacher and instead aims to become a data analyst.   It is the women who refuse to just accept what society tells them they can and cannot do that stands out to Kaminski because at one time women

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Pittsfield Schools Leasing More Space On Eagle Street
By Andy McKeever, iBerkshires Staff
06:12AM / Saturday, October 28, 2017
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PITTSFIELD, Mass. — The School Department is increasing the amount of space it leases on Eagle Street.   Earlier this year, the department moved its Student Resource Center out of leased space at St. Luke's Square to Eagle Street. But, after moving into the fourth floor, it realized it was too small.   "The space is smaller than what we left on Whipple Street the previous year and we have struggled with certain aspects of the set up of the space," Superintendent Jason McCandless said.   The SRC was supposed to be operating with 2,045 square feet but the number of students and the layout posed difficulties. The landlord, Scarafoni Associates, informed the

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Pittsfield Looking to Turnaround Poor MCAS Scores
By Andy McKeever, iBerkshires Staff
01:11AM / Thursday, October 26, 2017
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Superintendent Jason McCandless said the district improvement plan had been overhauled with more specifics to address issues shown through the MCAS data. PITTSFIELD, Mass. — On Monday mornings, the second-grade teachers at Morningside Elementary School gather in a conference room. Their classrooms are being managed by support staff.   Together they all look at the week's lesson plans. The veteran teachers weigh in on what they've seen children struggle with and what they've found that works. They anticipate problems that could occur.   The newer teachers bring an energy and new science behind education, suggesting changes here and there. They plan out the

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Mildred Elley Opens Admissions Office in North Adams
By Jack Guerino, iBerkshires Staff
05:11PM / Wednesday, October 25, 2017
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NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — With a new admissions office on Main Street, Mildred Elley is ready to connect Northern Berkshire residents with career training and education opportunities.   Director of Admissions Jennifer Bushika said 20 percent of Mildred Elley's student population comes from Northern Berkshire and Southern Vermont and that opening up a satellite facility in North Adams will make it easier for current and potential students to connect with the Pittsfield school.     "We really just wanted to make it easier…because when you are thinking about education sometimes getting your foot in the door is the hardest hurdle to get over," she said

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Pittsfield School Committee Candidates Discuss Future
By Andy McKeever, iBerkshires Staff
01:39AM / Wednesday, October 25, 2017
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PITTSFIELD, Mass. — The School Committee is going to have to consider closing a school.   At least five of the six candidates for the committee believe that has to be on the table. Six candidates are on the ballot for six seats. On Monday, five of those candidates gathered for a conversation at Berkshire Community College.   "There has been over a 50 percent decline in school-aged population in the city of Pittsfield of a period of time close to 40 years," William Cameron said. "The issue of declining enrollment is something Pittsfield is going to have to deal with."   Cameron is one of two, barring an unforeseen write-in campaign by somebody else,

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How Big Was a T-Rex? Dalton Preschoolers Know!
03:21PM / Wednesday, October 18, 2017
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DALTON, Mass. — Dalton Preschool is installing a "Dinosaur Lengths Project" as part of their current curriculum, "Exploring Dinosaurs."

The installation will be on view on the side-lawn of the Dalton CRA, 400 Main St., through Sunday, Oct. 22. The project was made possible with support from Hill Engineers, Architects & Planners.

The Dinosaurs Lengths Project installation contains basic information cards and length measurements for five different dinosaurs, including: Tyrannosaurus rex, Triceratops, Apatosaurus (a k a Brontosaurus), Lambeosaurus and Velociraptor. The dinosaurs will be visually represented by different colored survey tapes strung in-between

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Education Task Force Panel Answers Questions at NBCC Forum
By Tammy Daniels, iBerkshires Staff
01:28AM / Wednesday, October 18, 2017
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Panelists Jake Eberwein, left, Paul Butler, Douglas McNally, Robert Putnam and Tony Mazzucco, all members of the task force. 

NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — The vision of the Berkshire County Education Task Force is a single, countywide school district that would create sustainable educational opportunities and academic support to a dwindling student population.

The controversial recommendation, made in July after two years of study and modeling, hasn't been an easy sell in the small towns fearing that consolidation means school closings and loss of local control.   But task force members are hoping that officials, parents and community members will see the benefits of at least

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Taconic Contruction: 58 Percent Complete; Focused On Enclosing Building
By Andy McKeever, iBerkshires Staff
11:46AM / Tuesday, October 17, 2017
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The construction managers want to have the building fully enclosed by the first week in November to provide warmth for the workers during the winter. PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Construction managers expect to complete $4 million worth of construction per month to keep on schedule with the building of the new Taconic High School.   The building is currently 58 percent complete, according to James Moran, a program manager with the city's project managers Skanska.   Through September, a total of $55.4 million of the $120.8 million project had been invoiced, which is 56 percent. The project managers have used only 38.7 percent of the owner's contingency, and 49.1 percent

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