Subcommittee tries to offer its best information to date
The number of parents swelled to about 30 at Stratton's cafeteria as they came to learn, suggest ideas and express comments about plans to relocate their students for a year to modular classrooms in other schools.
As the meeting of the School Committee's feasibility subcommittee stretched 40 minutes longer than scheduled, parent Leigh Panettiere got to one underlying issue: "Keep our kids out of Ottoson .... Nobody thinks this a good idea."
Subcommittee Chair Cindy Starks spoke as a teacher who has conducted classes in modular classrooms in Lexington: "I wish we had more money" to do whatever we wanted in the face of expanding enrollment, but "we have to live within the constraints the town has given us. We're all trying as hard as we can."
These positions generally reflect two of the chief sides in the debate about relocating students in 2016-17 while Stratton undergoes its long-awaited, $12 million renovation.
Based on the discussion Tuesday, May 26, here are the main points to what is known so far:
The creative efforts of more than 200 Arlington public school art students are showcased each spring in the annual Town Hall K-12 exhibit. David Ardito, interim K-12 director of visual art, reported.
One example, by a high school student, is at left.
See many more images here >>
All nine schools are represented, and the works are on display this year until Thursday, May 28 in the hallway gallery on the second floor of Town Hall.
A public reception is set for May 28 from 4 to 6 p.m. to congratulate students and their art teachers. The location is where the exhibit is.
Arlington School Committee School Committee plans to hold its regular meeting Thursday, May 28, at 6:30 p.m. in the School Committee Room, sixth floor, Arlington High School. Draft agenda:
6:30 P.M. Open Meeting
6:35 P.M. Executive Session
• To conduct strategy sessions in preparation for negotiations with union and/or nonunion personnel or contract negotiations with union and/or nonunion in which if held in an open meeting may have a detrimental effect.
• To discuss strategy with respect to collective bargaining or litigation if an open meeting may have a detrimental effect on the bargaining or litigating position of the public body and the chair so declares.
UPDATED, May 28: Winchester Town Meeting is expected to discuss and vote on the sale of the 12.5 acres of land around Wright-Locke Farm on Thursday, May 28, at 7:30 p.m. at the McCall Middle School auditorium.
The public is invited to attend and asked to sit in the balcony, with the main floor reserved for voting Town Meeting members.
On May 11, selectmen voted, 4-1, to recommend that Wright-Locke Land Trust proposal move forward to Town Meeting. Their plan offers no development of the 12.5 acres near the farm, just iover the Arlington border.
Representative Jay Kaufman's award-winning, public-policy forum, Open House, delves into the role and charge of the state auditor in "A Conversation with Massachusetts State Auditor Suzanne Bump." The forum, the eighth of the 20th season, is set for Thursday, May 28, from 7 to 8 p.m. at the historic Depot, 13 Depot Square, Lexington Center.
Bump was elected auditor of the Commonwealth in 2010, one of six constitutional officers in Massachusetts, and the first female to serve in this role in the state's history.
The office works to ensure that every dollar given to state government is a dollar well spent and that state agencies and contractors follow the rules when spending public funds. To that end, the Office conducts financial, performance and technical assessments of programs, departments, agencies, authorities, contracts and vendors.
Housing corporation fund at $17,800
Expected to perform at the June 10 fund-raiser, titled "Side by Side for Brookside," are at least three Arlington musicians -- Vance Gilbert, Deborah-Henson Conant and Woody Giessmann, as well as two others from Boston, Ilana Katz Katz and John Powhida.
All ticket proceeds will go to the Brookside Condominium/Arizona Terrace Fund set up by the housing nonprofit to assist those displaced by the fire.
Andrea Nicolay, interim director, has been appointed director of libraries for Arlington, effective Saturday, May 23, the town has announced.
A news release said Nicolay advanced following an internal screening process with members of the Board of Library Trustees and library staff.
Nicolay has served in the interim after Peter Struzziero, hired as library director in December, left in mid-February. Sources say Struzziero agreed to leave after the administration the fit was not right. In March, Belmont hired Struzziero to head its libraries.
Nicolay was hired as library assistant director/head of adult services in September 2012 and in 2013 continued as assistant director when that position was fully restored.
Last November, she was also interim director when Director of Libraries Ryan Livergood left his position for a new job in Illinois.
The Arlington-Belmont combined high school crew team has won the public-schools state championship for the second season straight, and the boys' team retained its title as state champs, having won four seasons in a row.
The season continues, as AB crew qualified four boats for the U.S. Rowing Youth National Championships from June 12 to 14 in Sarasota, Fla. This is the second year in a row the team has made to the nationals.
See the results of the Massachusetts Public School Rowing Association spring competition on the Merrimack River, Lowell, on Sunday, May 24, here >>
Family expects to develop in any event
UPDATED, May 28: An estimated 300 people crowded the Hardy School Thursday, May 21, and heard 24 speakers reject the outline of a plan from a Cambridge developer for the 17-acre Mugar site.
Concerns about the impact of the 219-unit plan from Oaktree Development on flooding and traffic led to the unanimous disdain reflected in comments from all speakers. To loud applause, state Rep. Dave Rogers said that he and town officials are "uniformly and completely opposed."
At the end of the evening, Gwendolen G. Noyes, a founder and senior vice president of marketing of Oaktree, said of the Mugars: "There is no chance that they will not be doing something at the site" along Route 2.
Before the two-hour meeting, crowds, including many children, held signs on all four corners at Lake and Brooks Avenue to streams of passing traffic. Inside, as the cafeteria filled, the sounds of children chanting filtered through an open door: "Hey, hey, ho, ho -- the Mugar plan has got to go."
Oaktree organizers, who were paying for the evening, asked that the doors be closed.