Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Let's Put On A Demonstration!

Wildwood School Building Project: Back to the drawing board
Parents and their children demonstrate in front of Middle School auditorium

Judy Garland and Mickey Rooney always had the perfect answer to a social problem requiring a sudden infusion of cash:  "Let's put on a show!"  And with talent like Ms. Garland, how could it fail? 

Last night almost 200 Town Meeting members had to negotiate a gauntlet of Mega School supporters numbering over 100 but all confined into a rather small space directly in front of the entry to the Middle School auditorium where Town Meeting convenes.



Had this been an election and the auditorium a polling place they would have been required to stand a lot farther back as election law bans demonstrations within 150 feet of the polling booth.

Last night was our 4th and thankfully last session and since no Town Meeting member made a "Motion to reconsider Article 2," the only chance for the $67 million Mega School is for the Select Board to call a Special Town Meeting by a simple majority vote or for citizens to collect 100 signatures to call one by petition, either of which has to happen before February 2nd.

But it's not like the make up of Town Meeting is going to change over the next two months so the likelihood of another Special Town Meeting suddenly supporting the school project borrowing with a two thirds vote is pretty much zero.

Town Meeting was criticized yet again for ignoring "the will of the voters" who ever so narrowly supported the new school at the November 8th election.  But it did fail to even garner a majority since 10.4% of the voters did not bother to weigh in on Question 5.

Amherst had a 68% turnout for the Presidential election and Question 5 passed 45.21% to 44.38% or less than one percent. 

Town Meeting on the first night had a 88% turnout and Article 2 failed by 50.47% to 49.53% or less than 1%, which sounds pretty identical to the "will of the voters" to me.

Unless you think a demonstration of will is washing down that second slice of chocolate cake with a diet coke. 


75 comments:

Anonymous said...

Whatever happened to laws requiring unobstructed egress from public assemblies?

Anonymous said...

Seems the School Administration, School Committee and Building Committee have taken the "My way or the highway" approach to improving our schools.

In actuality- town members want to explore options available to insure we have safe and healthy schools, keep K-6 intact and not break the bank for tax payers.

Let's not say "There is nothing to be done"

Even if we had obtained approval- the schools currently need repairs (a new school would not have been completed immediately)

So focus on the needs of the current schools (Can MSBA assist us with boilers/ roofs?)

Get a wealth of input and ideas (involve all residents) to come up with a fiscally responsible plan for the schools. Take time to listen (we have a lot of expertise in this town)

A "woe is me" attitude is gonna get us nowhere!

Anonymous said...


Yes, the new school building issue is a complex one that has divided our town. There are passionate supporters on both sides that make good points on why it should have been built, or on why the project would have been a public education disaster if it went forward.

That the select board automatically rubber stamped this generations effecting town project with a unanimous vote speaks volumes on how out of touch the board has become, especially after the two town/tm 50/50 split votes.

Perhaps it’s time for a clean slate?

Anonymous said...

Bold didn't do so well, did they?

Anonymous said...

There are thousands of places in the world where kids are getting a much better education than here, in much worse conditions than Wildwood and Fort River.

Please, slow down and do things correctly this time. The sky is not falling.

More protesting is just plain sickening. So many spoiled brats who have never learned they can't have everything their own way.

I sure hope Town Meeting members do not "cave in" to this nonsense! The kids will be fine.

Anonymous said...

What confuses me is why didn’t the pro building group call for the reconsider vote during TM?

Why call out all that ruckus, all those kid protesters if Town Meeting wasn’t going to do a re-vote? Kind of makes all that effort a waste.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m glad there was no new vote. Things are a mess enough already. How many time are we gonna vote on this thing?

And please don’t thump your chest that the ‘will of the town’ has spoken on unofficial results with 30% Umass students, and yes/no vote tallies showing LESS than a 1 percent different.

Anonymous said...

All the insiders supporting this project suddenly are the outsiders protesting-what? That they've been pushing an expensive project for years that has little support from parents, teachers and Amherst residents? This shows that Town Meeting members are more in touch with the views of ordinary people than the elected boards and committees.

Anonymous said...

Now, Larry, let's not step in statistical dog manure here.

You'll have to do the same calculation including voters who leave the question blank when the next charter proposal is on the ballot, especially if it wins.

That calculation will come after you've put down the streamers and the party hats, and been crowing all night and on-line about the will of the people.

I understand you only search for the stats that support your bias at any given time, but some of us have long memories. Please don't repeat this particular numerical wrinkle again. I expect that I'll be a charter proposal supporter although that's not carved in stone, especially after the inevitable compromises.

Rich Morse

Anonymous said...


You guys, you guys, have you learned nothing from Watergate? Following the $$$..

For example, at Town Meeting the developer fellow talked about removing the 'outdated' zoning districts preventing 5 story developments marching down 'from Triangle to the town green'..

What's between those two points? The fire station of course. If the DPW moves to the Fort River site, the fire station could then move down to the former DPW building. Current Town Officials would then love, love to unload the now-unoccupied fire station building to who? Perhaps D. Williams/Archipelago?

But how to get that darn school off the Fort River site to make all this happen?

Please noticed the overlap of membership between the pro-development Amherst-for-all group and the town School Committee. This 'overlap' is not a coincidence.

Following the $$$..

Anonymous said...

This was a very simple issue. Kids in schools that are not healthy because of poor construction and age vs an increase in the town's property tax. And in this town, the kids didn't stand a chance against the people who care more about money than children. Yes, you can "say" it was about preserving neighborhood schools and all of the other smokescreen objections that have been argued ad nauseum. But in the end, as everything else in this town, it came down to town meeting members protecting their property tax rates and they won and the kids lost. It's too bad they aren't so tight-fisted when it comes to paying out social justice settlements. But of course, that would not be the politically correct decision and no one would dare to question those payouts. It's easy to say "no" to children. Now please enjoy the rest of the discussion by rehashing all of the old arguments that have been used. I will be elsewhere.

Anonymous said...

Hmmmmm....who could anon 3:22 be? Who would out of the blue reference Watergate? Can't be ed because I am sure ed must be working....

Anonymous said...

Wow...anon 3:59 really put everyone in their place...and I doubt they "will be elsewhere" !

Anonymous said...

3:59 PM:

I believe you are wrong for the most part. Watching TM on Amherst Media and reading many editorials and talking to folks I heard again and again from the parents and residents that they were willing to pay higher taxes for a school fix or building plan that they could support, that their concerns on busing and fitting (outside play spaces, etc) so many young students on the undersized Wildwood site were not being heard or addressed.

I saw one sheet of the site plan with a play space island –inside- the busy single bus loop, just one of many problems for example.

But yes, probably a few residents, perhaps older on a limited income did vote solely based on their pocketbooks.

Anonymous said...

To say that the majority of teachers don't support the project is an absolute lie. There is a petition and the majority of teachers at each of the buildings have signed on. More misinformation those who want to continue to have segregated schools.

Anonymous said...

With his encyclopedic memory of such matters, Mr. Kelley, I trust, knows the history of Motions to Reconsider in Town Meeting's past and any discussion from him on this topic would be illuminating. My sense is the history is very limited. I would suggest that the burden of proof to pass a Motion to Reconsider, in any circumstances, should be pretty damned high.

I have a vague recollection of one coming up in Town Meeting perhaps over 10 years ago involving Eva Schiffer as a prominent player. But, for the life of me, I can't remember what it was about.

As someone who would have voted YES (if I hadn't been traveling last week) last Monday, I don't see the basis........yet. If this is going to be about the quality of information provided to Town Meeting, well, that is a huge can of worms, because that does not distinguish this debate from any other.

Mr. Kelley and the rest of the NOs seem to have won this one fair and square. If there was bad information, misinformation, or disinformation, Town Meeting somehow (don't ask me) is responsible for ferreting that all out, which is why I've never been comfortable with the process in there. Sometimes it's reckless. Sometimes it's a deer in the headlights, but the headlights are imaginary. The debate can be like an unguided missile. There is no obligation on anyone to make factual corrections. There is no fact-checker or ombudsman, and the Moderator absolutely does not play that role. Some of the membership consults with each other in long, rambling discussions on listservs not open to the general public. Town Meeting has become an arena of some of the most skillful manipulation of minds you'll see anywhere, and there are very few people poised to set things straight. For some reason, that seems to be more of a feature of the Pistrang as Moderator era. Mr. Gregg was viciously attacked at times from the floor for his handling of the proceedings, but he may have been more deft in getting things corrected.

We have a process in our Charter Commission to deal with these glaring problems, but an allowed Motion to Reconsider would be a public admission by the body that it collectively does not know what it is doing.....on something so enormously important. If the vote on such a motion were tomorrow, I'd have to vote NO.

Rich Morse

Anonymous said...

On another note …
For those of us in attendance last night at the embarrassment called Town Meeting, you just witnessed a group committing suicide not once, twice or three times, but multiple times !!!!

Anonymous said...

The kids are the big losers here. Town Meeting has failed them. They are doomed to be in those schools that are among the worst condition wise in the state for another decade. Way to go town meeting! I'll be voting to do away with TM.

Anonymous said...

It's interesting that the district and school committee put no information into the packets sent to town meeting. At 2 precinct meetings there was no one from the school committee, district or wildwood rebuilding committee to provide information. The superintendent spoke to town meeting, as did knowledgeable town meeting members.

TMCC put much information on the town meeting website and people from Save Amherst Small Schools went to precinct meetings to discuss their views. The finance committee did a long description of the project and financial impacts. Town meeting members also had information about the project from the spring.

If the protesters wanted a motion to reconsider, why wasn't one brought onto the town meeting floor last night?

Anonymous said...

anon@5:07 PM
yes, many teachers support the only option now available to build a new school (this option includes reconfiguration). However, when given the opportunity to choose btwn this option and other options, this current proposal was NOT chosen by many/most teachers and parents. I call you out on your misinformation! SASS never mislead on this issue, I am certain.

I wanted a new school and willing to pay more in taxes but not reconfiguration. I blame the ARPS leadership, not SASS. The Amherst community relies a lot on the schools to provide a sense of 'belonging'. With reconfiguration that would be lost, along with any investment of parent/guardian efforts. Why would anyone with kids chose Amherst (w the new configuration) to live in with its extremely high taxes and house costs when they could live in Belchertown with lower living costs and a similarly configured school system?

Anonymous said...

The district spent hundreds of thousands of dollars on a plan that lost $33 million in state funding.

Dr. Ed said...

Hmmmmm....who could anon 3:22 be? Who would out of the blue reference Watergate? Can't be ed because I am sure ed must be working....

Well, Dr. Ed was working and hence is only aware of this now.

Enough said?

Anonymous said...

Dr ed...pleasuring yourself is not usually considered work. Enough said?

Anonymous said...

Because Belchertown schools suck compared to Amherst (by any measure I can think of including curriculum, diversity, standardized test scores).

SASS has misinformed at every turn. Moving the goal posts again? Teachers don't really know what they're talking about and we will rely on a 10 month old survey to find what they really think? How elitist of you.

Anonymous said...

Thanks to the misinformation by SASS.

Anonymous said...

+1

Anonymous said...

This is Sooooooooo dejavu- to the union packin-senior citizen hating-transient wanna-be crowds meeting after meeting for the regional ARHS addition-or even in Leverett days of yore mega-school expansion boosters old game - meetings at hours seniors/ property owners can't attend-until the town bites the bullet- how unethical/ dishonest !!!???

Anonymous said...

Really 10:33? You sound like a 12 year old saying that they suck, which if you are a product of the Amherst school system doesn't do much to defend your point. Belchertown has great schools so while they might not have quite the diversity and a few less options in the curriculum, that certainly does not make them "suck" in comparison. In fact the standardized test scores are very similar. Quite frankly the trade off of having fewer class options to choose from is well worth it to not have students suffer from the constant struggle between the administration and the members of the community that don't want to let them accomplish anything. Not to mention all the drama that is constantly drudged up with parental and staff issues. Not to say that Amherst schools aren't still great in their own right, but at what point are people going to realize that the drama and fighting by the adult members of the community actually affects the kids that are the ones that receive the services of the schools? The adults around here have a lot of growing up to do if they expect their children to benefit from living in Town and not want to jump ship the first chance they get.

Anonymous said...

I would expect you know all this hulsballuh has precious little nothing to do with " For the kids" teachers union battle cry-and everything to do with a union sponsored job creation program-do we really owe every advanced degree failure college studen cum teacher a job on our property taxes town dime ?!!! Say no go-Bistro life in Amherst is loads of fun-what do we owe the cafe cultures constant battle with job transience ???!!!

Dr. Ed said...

Larry, remind them of the portable classrooms at Mark's Meadow.

Laura Quilter said...

For those of you readers who are not sure what various anonymous posters mean when they write "misinformation by SASS", I encourage you to visit the SASS website and see the content for yourself. We are a variety of parents and educators who by professional training all appreciate citation and evidence, so that's where we go.

http://SASSamherst.org/

People do feel strongly, and may have different opinions, but I would wish that we would respect that we are all working in good faith. In times of great incivility, we could model how to have debate -- even heated debate -- while respecting one another's different views.

Anonymous said...

from Masslive
http://www.masslive.com/news/index.ssf/2016/11/school_officials_asking_state.html#incart_river_index_topics

Despite being told there was absolutely NO way (NO WAY!) that the MSBA would reconsider an alternative plan for the WW site, it appears that Mr. Morris thinks there is a chance since he is asking the MSBA for such consideration. I hope he also considers an addition to CF (similar or less in scope from the 2002 addition/renovation that cost ~ $6 million), so that we can have just two k-6 elementary schools, with preK resited to the new bldg at WW. As Mr Morris stated at TM, his idea (plan?) for seating students in the proposed 2-6grades would have been based on North/South residency, there should be no barrier to splitting the N/S student populations btwn CF and a new school at the WW site.

Anonymous said...

Laura, have a look at your speech at town meeting. You poured gasoline on the bridge before burning it. Offensive in so many ways. And now you are lecturing us on civil debate?! Wow

Anonymous said...

This is not a viable plsn Anon 305 because the MSBA will not provide funding to build a new school that includes pre-k. Also I guess this means it's ok for Fort River families to lose their neighborhood school as long as Crocker and Wildwood families get to keep theirs. Also under your plan SPED kids still would not be able to go to their neighborhood school under all circumstances.

Anonymous said...

3:33-perfect example. No details. No facts. Just assertions. 3:33-what did Quilter say that "poured gasoline on the bridge?' SASS had a lot of facts and details.

Anonymous said...

SASS's "facts" and "details" were anything but. Lots and lots of misinformation. Because of SASS it will be many years before our kids are educated in a healthy, 21st century school. Way to go Laura! You get to keep your neighborhood school that's not a fit place to go to school. Oh that's right. Your child doesn't even go to school in Amherst.

Anonymous said...

so anon@3:38 not matter what, FR kids will lose a neighborhood school (although now, almost no kids actually walk to FR), kids near CF will have a 'neighborhood' school from k-1 and kids near WW will have a 'neighborhood' school 2-6 (did you bitch about that 'unfairness'). Also, pls explain why SPED kids could not be accommodated in both CF and a new WW k-6 school? Just because Ms Geryk might have claimed this, it might not be true/accurate.
Pls provide a link to the MSBA rules where they refuse to fund costs of a school that includes a preK.

Anonymous said...

anon@3:38: a quick looks at the MSBA site reviews preK+ schools.
http://www.massschoolbuildings.org/programs/model_school

Anonymous said...

In case you haven't noticed downtown Amherst is woefully, woefully underdeveloped. The school district building plan would have been a big win-win for ALL involved, the kids would get a new school they can finally love, and downtown North Pleasant would get increased foot and car traffic with the added possibly of the aging fire-station building going on the market.

I too am tired of hearing from all these SASS people, with their facts, figures and so-called research, yet they know nothing of modern real estate market dynamics.

We are really missing an opportunity here, to create a community where college students and adults can live, work and play, and kids can get the new school they deserve and love.

Obviously many at (the very outdated) Town Meeting do not not understand this. Honestly how could they vote against the select board, planning board, finance committee and school committee?

Past time to get real folks.

Anonymous said...

Thanks to our failed local Democratic institutions of government for helping to elect the President we deserve!

Anonymous said...

looks like plenty of preK+ elementary school have been constructed under the MSBA program http://www.massschoolbuildings.org/programs/model_school

Rick Hood said...

"Despite being told there was absolutely NO way (NO WAY!) that the MSBA would reconsider an alternative plan for the WW site, it appears that Mr. Morris thinks there is a chance since he is asking the MSBA for such consideration."

And if he did not ask, what uproar would there be about "why didn’t you ask?" That’s probably why he’s asking. No, that does not mean he thinks there is a chance.

Dr. Ed said...

What is wrong with all the SPED students going to the same school? They already are segregated going to/from school (by necessity), it's a whole lot more efficient (read: "cheaper") to transport to one school rather than three, and you have economy of scale. Most districts have a designated SPED elementary school, usually the newest one, and this is legal.

As long as FAPE & LRE is provided, this is OK.

Remember, the goal is providing the child a Free and Appropriate Public Education (FAPE) and an out-of-district SPED placement means the child isn't able to attend the neighborhood school, either.

Rick Hood said...

"Your child doesn't even go to school in Amherst." Huh? Seriously? Well, my kids are long gone, class of '05 and '07, but they did go to Amherst public schools.

Anonymous said...

Rick
It's Laura's daughter who does not go to school in Amherst.

Anonymous said...

They don't find prek cuz it's not a required grade in MA.

Dr. Ed said...

"and downtown North Pleasant would get increased foot and car traffic"

The most direct route between South Amherst and Wildwood goes through downtown, and while it's not been mentioned yet, buses and a couple hundred Mommymobiles going through downtown is not going to help the retail trade.

Downtown Amherst is a chokepoint, a junction of five state highways, all of which connect through downtown. There really is no way around downtown and in addition to what the Megaskool would do to the neighborhoods around Wildwood, there's what it will do "upstream" to the South.

"with the added possibly of the aging fire-station building going on the market."

There is an inevitable "tipping point" at which point the hassle of getting to Amherst exceeds the desire/benefit of going there. And as to foot traffic, building these 5-story buildings right next to the sidewalk is creating canyons.

Anonymous said...

SASS does not represent every town resident that voted "no".

The unhappiness with this plan and its cost has been well known since early this year.
If you are asking taxpayers to increase their tax bill specifically to cover an expensive project- It makes common sense to gather information and listen to feedback to see who is on board *before* plowing ahead.

When you do a survey of parents and teachers- Pay attention to the results!


Anonymous said...

Look it up yourself....MSBA does not fund pre K

Anonymous said...

Over 150 teachers and staff want the new schools.

Anonymous said...

Wait, Quilter has a kid but doesn't send them to Amherst public schools? What is her dog in this fight?

Anonymous said...

I'll just park this here..

http://www.massschoolbuildings.org/programs/model_school

Model School Program
Savings Through Innovation

The Model School Program seeks to effectively adapt and re-use the design of successful, recently constructed Pre-K through 12th grade schools. Model Schools are efficient in design and easy to maintain, contain optimal classroom and science lab space, can easily accommodate higher or lower enrollments,
incorporate sustainable, “green” design elements when possible and are flexible in educational programming spaces while encouraging community use.

Massachusetts School Building Authority

Anonymous said...

The Model School Program is no longer in existence.

Anonymous said...

There was someone to get pissed at that is an authority figure and everyone in Amherst likes a cause. Especially one where you fight the man and prove to him he was wrong not to listen to you.

Anonymous said...


The Model School Program appears to be still around:

MSBA selects Longmeadow High School’s design for model school program, Sept. 15, 2016

http://thereminder.com/localnews/longmeadow/msbalongmeadowmodelschool/

Anonymous said...


I do not know who this Laura Quilter is, but I have read her comments here and elsewhere.

It appears to me that she has, for the most part, stuck to the substance of her premise, that there’s no (or very weak) educational justification for the expensive consolidated school building project, even trotting out the p-word, pedagogy (or the lack of pedagogy in the plan).

It says a lot that her opponents are attacking her personally, questioning where her kids go to school, and so on, but do not refute the substance of Ms. Quilter’s original premise.

These ad hominem (nothing to do with grits), personal attacks greatly weaken the speakers own arguments.

If you oppose her premise on the school plan, please counter the substance of her arguments. Personal attacks do not inspire confidence that you have a leg to stand on.

Though at this point you’re probably too late.

Anonymous said...

anon@8:07 a look at the core project accepted into the program reveals many preK+ schools. Unless, you provide a link, I think you are lying...(Ms Appy?), same with your claim that the Model School Program is no longer active. Put up or shut up.

Anonymous said...

Anon 856. Stating a fact is a personal attack? Your response to the statement of fact indicates to me that you too think it's odd that someone who's child does not have to suffer thru schools that are among those that are in the worst shape in the entire state would work so hard to deprive all the ES students in Amherst the opportunity to go to 21st century schools. I'd have more respect for Ms Quilter if her child also had to endure classes with no walls.

Anonymous said...

MSBA will NOT fund a prek school in Amherst. That is a fact. Call and ask them if you have any doubts.

Anonymous said...

+1

Anonymous said...

BTW Geryk did not have her children in the schools. What facts did SASS get wrong? That should be easy to answer.

Anonymous said...

Yes Geryk did not have her children in the school. And she also did NOT fight hard to prevent other kids from having the opportunity to go to a school with four walls in each classroom.

Anonymous said...

"schools that are among those that are in the worst shape in the entire state"

Stop with the drama!
You must be listening to our Interim Superintendent who apparently minored in drama.

Anonymous said...

We scored among the lowest in the state for staff feeling the buildings helped support learning. What is your evidence that this is not fact based? Why is this drama?

Anonymous said...

See last week's gazette op-ed for the misinformation spouted by SASS. Ordonez's op-ed this week corrects many of the lies spread by SASS.

Anonymous said...

Dr. Ed / 7:02 ...

Really Ed, you can be such a fool. I suspect you know even less about real estate development than you know about education, which is saying a lot (or less)!

First of all 'building these 5-story buildings right next to the sidewalk' is a model that has worked well for major modern cities, like New York for example. You might of heard of it. It is perhaps the most successful urban landscape in the history of the world. So once again you are completely wrong.

Also think about it, the Fort River site has a lot, a lot of land around it. Perfect for moving the DPW to, and perhaps the town hall office functions as well. The current Town Hall building, along with the Fire Station occupy prime downtown locations that generate ZERO in taxes and have no parking to support it, a terrible situation. The Fort River site has more than enough space to support multiple convenient parking lots. It's well past time to close that failing moldy school and get this process started. The town will be much better off in so many ways.

And that ridiculous farmers market generates absolutely nothing in the way of retail taxes. That space is completely wasted and needs to be developed as serious retail expansion. Look at what Hadley has done with it's wildly successful Route 9 commercial corridor. They need to keep widening that road to keep up with demand!

We've informally floated this new VC (visioning-concept) for Amherst past some on the planning board and they believe it could fly with the right timing and special permits. Town Meeting will be gone by then, so real experts can finally move Amherst forward instead of backwards for a change. The future is coming, I invite you to embrace it and profit or get out of the way.

Anonymous said...

"The officials cite three reasons why the measure was not supported by Town Meeting, none of which were related to cost. They are the loss of the existing three K-6 schools, the size of the new building and the concept of co-located schools and whether they would be permanent."
http://www.gazettenet.com/Amherst-superintendent-requests-both-short-and-long-term-extension-related-to-Wildwood-School-project-6375184

Here we go again... Cost was definitely one of the reasons the plan did not pass. Town officials need to pay attention to what tax payers are saying. Modify the extras and lower the cost. By ignoring our concerns- they are setting the vote up for failure again!

Anonymous said...

Anon 513. You are not paying attention. The plan cannot be modified if it were to be brought back to town meeting for a revote per MSBA rules.

Laura Quilter said...

Anon at 3:48 pm. You forgot to give the URL for the editorial that SASS wrote. It's here: http://www.amherstbulletin.com/Save-Amherst-s-Small-Schools-seeks-to-find-common-ground-6167557

It does seem popular these days to sling stories of lies. I'd urge people to read for themselves.

Anonymous said...

It is a fact that SASS spread a huge amount of misinformation and the children of Amherst are the ones who will pay the price.

Anonymous said...

Meant the op-ed by the editorial board touting the fact that we could 1. Go back and ask to modify plan and 2. That we could 'quickly' get back in MSBA pipeline. Both outright lies perpetuated by SASS.

Anonymous said...

School building committees aren't formed until well into the MSBA process which we won't be back in for at least three years and likely five or six. Great idea to form one now and circumvent the state process.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for your great concern and realistic proposals! A decade of students and their sick teachers will remember you forever. Good job Ms. Quilter

Anonymous said...

Many residents and parents did not like the new school plan, not just this SASS group. Without 1000s of UMass students voting it would have never squeaked by with that razor thin, still unofficial vote.

I’ve been to the meetings, the School Committee and SI Maria Geryk decided on this unpopular plan years ago and never listened to the feedback. If fact all evidence shows that they could care less about resident and parent feedback.

It’s now up to the current acting SI and pretty much the same School Committee to figure out where to go from here to salvage the wreckage they created. This SASS group can help guide and inform as a community group but they have no official capacity otherwise.

The School Committee versus SASS is a dumb false equivalently. I suspect that most of the School Committee will refuse to do anything constructive out of spite for not getting their way.

Remember their wonderful shenanigans this past summer? The $306k payout of school money to their good friend? It will probably take a new School Committee before any progress is made.

Yes, as others have pointed out, most of the School Committee office holders are also zealous members of the development crazy Amherst for All / Amherst for Change group.

Notice 3 current and former School Committee members cheering at a Amherst for All event:

http://www.amherstforall.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/08/Pub-crowd.jpg

Given the above, confidence that the current School Committee will do anything productive is quite low.

Let’s hope the SC can put their responsibilities as town officials before their pro development agenda. I and many others have serious doubts.

And calling for Hadley’s ‘wildly successful’ Route 9 corridor to come to Amherst is not going to win any hearts and minds here.

Anonymous said...

So your flag thing is a rally but this is a demonstration? They are both rallies. Or both demonstrations.

Anonymous said...

Considering the New York Times features that post-modern brutalist classrooms are all the rage in vogue right now - Amherst must be taking a step back in time- is being revaunchevist- to demolish it's-so this cannot be about " For the kids " - must be about school nuts mafia construction corruption economics !!!?$&@