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State Releasing Extra Funds to Help Rural Schools
By Andy McKeever, iBerkshires Staff
03:41AM / Tuesday, November 06, 2018
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Department of Elementary and Secondary Education Commissioner Jeffrey Riley said for years the state has been providing a 'one size fits all model' for funding and that is now changing with such programs as rural school aid. DALTON, Mass. — Rural schools will receive additional support this year after state Sen. Adam Hinds successfully secured a $1.5 million budget allocation for additional aid.   The budget line provides districts below certain incomes and density $100 extra per student. The sparsity aid program helps rural schools with funding struggles keep up with larger schools throughout the state.    "In a rural school our fixed costs are the

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Guest Column: We Are Too Great to Hate
By James F. Birge, Guest Column
01:56PM / Saturday, November 03, 2018
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As the president of a public institution of higher education, I have the unique opportunity to hear from many voices of those who represent the next generation. It should come as no surprise that there are myriad concerns coming through in those voices about the state of our country.   Between the Trump administration's seeking to restrict Title IX's definition of gender to "a person's status as male or female based on immutable biological traits identifiable by or before birth," bombs being sent to officials affiliated with the Democratic Party, and shooting violence fueled by the increasing volume of hateful, racist, anti-Semitic, and ideological propaganda

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Mount Greylock Regional High School Teacher Wins $10,000 Kapteyn Prize
01:38PM / Wednesday, October 31, 2018
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WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — Berkshire Taconic Community Foundation announced today that

Jeffrey Welch, a social studies teacher at Mount Greylock Regional High School, has been awarded the 10th annual James C. Kapteyn Prize for excellence in teaching. He will receive a $10,000 award for study or travel to enrich his teaching, and the school will receive a $2,000 grant in his name.

In his 21 years at Mount Greylock, Welch's teaching assignments have ranged from core world and U.S. history classes to topics in a wide variety of disciplines, including conversational Italian, psychology and introduction to the law. He has directed the spring musical since 2000 and has served as the

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Drury Students Help Teach Third-Graders About Healthy Eating
By Stephen Dravis, iBerkshires Staff
05:16PM / Saturday, October 27, 2018
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NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — A healthy diet includes fruits, vegetables, proteins and grains.   A presentation about healthy eating can include a PowerPoint presentation, crafts, music and flossing. Not the kind of flossing you do to protect your teeth — though that is important too.   It was the dance-craze variety of flossing that a group of Drury High School students used Wednesday morning to get third-graders at Greylock Elementary School excited about nutritious snacks.   The students, from Drury's E3 Academy, were at Greylock to celebrate Massachusetts Food Day.    The E3 Academy seniors talked about how they are helping local producers of fresh

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MCLA, General Dynamics Demonstrate STEM Opportunities
By Tammy Daniels, iBerkshires Staff
01:20AM / Thursday, October 25, 2018
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Education Secretary James Pyser told the group of educators and community leaders that state needs to grow its STEM pathways to ensure its economic future.   NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — There was gooey goo, lemon-powered lights, 3-D printing, a demonstration of the harmonics and robots — and more robots.    While it was all for the benefit of getting dozens of local schoolchildren excited about science, this event at MCLA's Feigenbaum Center for Science and Innovation was also hopefully laying the foundation for building the next generation of scientists and engineers.    And they will be essential for the state's future

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BCC Honors Academic Achievement at Upcoming Convocation
02:10PM / Friday, October 19, 2018
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PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Berkshire Community College will recognize the academic achievements of 120 students during an Honors Convocation Program on Thursday, Oct. 18.

Each honored student ranks in the top 5 percent of the college with a grade point average of 3.75 or better in courses totaling at least 12 credits.

Massachusetts

Rebekah L. Baker, Alexandria T. Brandon, Michelle M. Briggs, Laurie A. McArthur, Kelsy M. Nixon, Cameron J. Winter

Tracy M. Stoddard

Emily M. Linendoll

Shannon M. Gwozdz, Michaela M. Larkin, Melissa L. Pantano, Lillian R. Sartorius, Kia Yang

Ramsey A. El Taieb

Stephanie J. Rogers

Shaina R. Benham, Deidre S. Brainerd, Oksana O. Dix, Jessie C. Downer,

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Accreditors to Visit BCC's Nursing Program Wednesday, Public Meeting Scheduled
By Andy McKeever, iBerkshires Staff
02:24AM / Friday, October 19, 2018
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PITTSFIELD, Mass. — BCC's nursing program will be reviewed for accreditation during a site visit on Wednesday.   The Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing's review includes a public forum on the accreditation process. ACEN has a full day scheduled and has set aside 1:45 until 2:45 p.m. to hear from the public on any questions, opinions, or concerns about the program.   "It is just an open conversation ... they look at stakeholders and the community is a stakeholder," said program adviser Ann Tierney. "They really want it to be a free-flowing conversation."   Tierney said program officials won't even be on hand during the

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BCC Names Interim Director of Nursing
Staff Reports,
10:29AM / Friday, October 12, 2018
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PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Christine Martin is taking over as head of the nursing program at BCC.   Berkshire Community College named Martin the interim director of nursing on Thursday. The appointment comes a month after former director Tochi Urbani resigned from the position in the midst of trouble with the program's accreditation.    Martin is no stranger to the program. She has taught at the college since 1993 and has worked as a tenured Professor in the Practical Nursing Program as well as the Associate Degree Nursing Program, an Adjunct Clinical Nursing Faculty member, an instructor of the Bridge Course called LPN to RN Mobility, as a CPR Instructor, and as an

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Berkshire Education Task Force Developing Models for Collaboration
By Tammy Daniels, iBerkshires Staff
01:13AM / Tuesday, October 09, 2018
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LEE, Mass. — The Berkshire County Education Task Force has completed its initial mission of determining options for local schools facing difficult economic and academic futures.    Now, it's hoping to offer pathways to school officials as they decide whether and how far to proceed toward the task force's solution of a single countywide school district.    William Cameron, task force member and retired superintendent of the Central Berkshire Regional School District, presented the coalition's goals to the meeting of Region VI of the Massachusachusetts Association of School Committees last week.   The task force last met on Sept. 22, he said,

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Clarksburg Principal Looks to Spend More Time in Classroom
By Tammy Daniels, iBerkshires Staff
05:07PM / Monday, October 08, 2018
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CLARKSBURG, Mass. — Principal Tara Barnes will be a little less available this school year.    Barnes told the School Committee she'd made a point of getting back as quickly as possible to parents and guardians when they've called. But after a recent coaching session, she's reorganizing her calendar to get her out of the office and into the classrooms more.    "Being in the classroom is where the work is happening," she told the committee on Thursday. "We all know this because this is where all the magic is happening and sometimes principals get bogged down with reports, and meetings ... we allow things to pull us away from

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