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  November 2014  
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Welcome to THE Amherst-Pelham Regional Public Schools

Due to the impending winter storm, all Amherst-Pelham Regional, Amherst Public and Pelham Elementary schools will be closed Wednesday November 26, 2014. Enjoy the long weekend.

The Amherst Regional Public Schools are located in the Pioneer Valley of Western Massachusetts. The area is rich in cultural, recreational and academic activities and opportunities. Our mission is the academic achievement of every student learning in a system dedicated to social justice and multiculturalism.

The school system educates a diverse population of approximately 3000 students, including native speakers of more than 25 languages. Three elementary schools are located in the town of Amherst and one in the town of Pelham. Our middle school and high school are located in the town of Amherst, and draw students from the towns of Amherst and Pelham, as well as Leverett and Shutesbury. The central office for the district is located in the middle school building at 170 Chestnut Street in Amherst.

“The School Committees’ policy of nondiscrimination extends to students, staff, and the general public with whom it does business. The Amherst-Pelham Regional District, the Amherst Public Schools, and the Pelham Elementary School do not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, age, religion, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, economic status, homelessness, political party, or disability in admission to, access to, employment in, or treatment by its programs and activities.”

What's Happening

Nominations Sought for Dr. Norma Jean Anderson Award

Nominations are now being accepted for the Dr. Norma Jean Anderson Civil Rights and Academic Achievement award.  More information about the award criteria and the nomination process can be found here.

ARHS Math Program Review Update

Over the last two years the ARHS Math department has been working to update math courses to align with the 2011 Massachusetts Mathematics Frameworks and reviewing textbooks. Here are some highlights of the work to date:

  • 5 day norming departmental understanding of the Standards for Mathematical Practice
  • Department went through design process to create a program review criteria, based on the review criteria used ARMS.
  • Department spent one full day reviewing each of the following curricula
    • College Preparatory Math (CPM) – with New England Regional Coordinator for Professional Development
    • Center for Mathematics Education Project (CME) – with Sales Representative and ARHS teacher
    • Core-Plus – with program expert and professor from local university
    • Interactive Mathematics Program (IMP) – with ARHS teachers
  • Another program was reviewed for part of day, Carnegie Learning – with ARHS teachers
  • Department members integrated materials from the above curricula into their lessons to gain insight into the use of the materials and share with the department
  • Three ARHS teachers participated in professional development at a nearby school using College Preparatory Math and reported back to the department
  • Three ARHS teachers visited a local school using the Core-Plus materials.

    We will be holding evening opportunities for parents to explore the textbooks, do some of the math, and provide comments for the ARHS math department to review. Dates will be set soon, likely the start of December.

    Textbooks being considered for ARHS are available for public review in the central office reception area at ARMS.

    • College Preparatory Math (CPM)
    • Center for Mathematics Education Project (CME)
    • Core-Plus Mathematics Program
    • Interactive Mathematics Program (IMP)

Please check the website below for regular updates:

Town and Schools Launch Amherst Together, An Initiative for Community Engagement and Mobilization

(July 18, 2014)   Amherst Town Manager John Musante and Superintendent of Schools Maria Geryk today announced the hiring of Amherst resident Carol Ross, an outstanding candidate for the newly created position of Media & Climate Communications Specialist for the Amherst-Pelham Regional Schools, the Amherst Public Schools and the Town of Amherst.  She will work to launch Amherst Together, an initiative that will serve as a foundation for building equity in Amherst through community collaboration. The effort aims to bring together a wider range of Amherst community interests to develop a collective vision for serving the whole.

"The key to Amherst Together is to research, identify, develop, and implement successful strategies for achieving equity by developing opportunities for communication and collaboration," says Musante. 

Ms. Ross has deep roots in the Amherst community.  She was raised and lives in Amherst, graduated from Amherst schools, and is a parent of an Amherst public school student.  She has a BA from UMass and professional experience as an author, photographer, human resources generalist, producer, documentarian and community organizer.  Ms. Ross’s work uses art as a tool for social impact and public discourse and is nationally recognized and locally celebrated.  She has eight years of public and educational sector human resources experience with expertise in cross-cultural engagement and conversation facilitation designed to stimulate profound thinking.  She is currently a member of the Superintendent’s Equity Task Force and the Town’s Human Rights Commission.  

Superintendent Geryk said, “It didn't take us long to realize that a collaborative effort was imperative. The same issues we are facing in our schools are also prevalent in our town. Ms. Ross’s background, her thoughtful approach and her ability to articulate and synthesize current climate issues to project positive outcomes is unparalleled.  I believe she is the right individual to assist us in bringing Amherst Together and to achieve our goals of fostering a healthier climate of civility, inclusivity and respect in the community.”

2014.07.18 Press Release Town & Schools Launch AmherstTogether.pdf

Nominations Sought for 2015-2016 ARPS Community-Building Award

The annual ARPS Community-Building Award honors two Amherst, Pelham or Amherst-Pelham Regional School District employees who "have helped to foster a sense of belonging among students and have helped to build bridges of understanding and acceptance among them."  Awardees for the 2014-2015 school year were Tara Luce, Crocker Farm Counselor, and Peter Crouse, Transportation Coordinator.  Nominations for 2015-2016 will be accepted at any time until June 30, 2015.  More information about the award criteria is available here and nomination forms are available here.
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