Guest Contribution

A recent ICE arrest in Amenia

Part 1 of 3


From the Region One superintendent’s desk: An open letter on school safety

To the Parents, Students, and Community Members of Region One, 

 I always prefer to speak and write about the positive things taking place in our schools. Our students and programs designed to promote increased learning are what we should be spending all of our time communicating.

Emptying the attic, reviewing the life

This year I may actually keep a New Year’s resolution. While our attic storage space is not crammed full, I knew that it sheltered many items I no longer had any use for. I was determined to make definite decisions and to clear out the clutter.

I was proceeding well until I came to the clothes hanging on racks. Because there was space, it was easy to move outdated, although beloved, outfits from the closet to the attic. It was a convenient place to stash formal attire my husband and I no longer wear.  

From the Region One Superintendent’s Desk: A letter to our Region One communities on testing

Every school in Connecticut receives the reports from the state for Smarter Balanced Consortium Assessments (SBAC tests) at the beginning of the year. Unfortunately, for most schools in the state, the news was not good this year. 

From the Region One Superintendent’s Desk: The roles of leadership at Region One schools

Over the years, even recently, there have been questions about the leadership roles in Region One. What is the role of the central office? How does that compare with the role of the principal?

It’s important to know that the role and responsibilities of both positions have changed significantly over the years. The No Child Left Behind Act (2001) put focus on each and every student’s learning. Prior to this legislation, there was far less focus on monitoring each student’s learning. 

Of squabbling squirrels and wily woodpeckers

Quarrelsome squirrels and irritating woodpeckers are just two of the creatures wandering my backyard these summer days. Add to them black bears, attack chipmunks, a lame bobcat and assorted birds, rabbits, mice etc. And that’s not even counting the teeniest tiny things out there. I’ve read there are as many as one billion living bacteria making their home in a teaspoon’s worth of my garden dirt, enabling all those weeds. 

Being thankful

One morning, like any other, in December, I was lulled awake by my clock radio and my favorite public station. I took my time, as I had taken the day off, and enjoyed the warmth and comfort of my beautiful bed with a great mattress, clean sheets, and fluffy comforter. I got up, used my indoor plumbing, and made hot tea, with sugar and fresh milk, and I climbed back in bed and watched my favorite morning show on TV. When my dog finally woke up, we took a walk outside through the beautiful lawns and gardens of the six acres where I live.

Fighting the winter blues

We are all inherently heliotropic, drawn to the light, both physically and metaphorically. This time of year, many of us fall victim to seasonal affective disorder (SAD), more commonly known as “the winter blues,” a form of depression closely related to the scarcity of daylight during the colder months. This affliction is more common in northern latitudes and to some degree probably affects more than 10 percent of all New Englanders. Typical symptoms are sadness, listlessness, irritability, and sleeping problems. 

A farmer’s view of the USDA recall process

In the recently reported recall of beef in which we were named (Whippoorwill Farm) we learned very quickly that in many ways the system works.

We received word from Adams Farm (the custom meat processor) in Athol, Mass., of the recall and the link to the food safety and inspection service (FSIS), which is part of the USDA, where all of the lot numbers were listed.

Three writers in a barbershop

Part 3 of 3


In a 1977 interview with his friend Federico Fellini, Simenon remarked, “You know, Fellini, I’ve been a better Casanova than you. A year or two ago I figured out that since the age of 13 and a half I’ve had 10,000 women. It wasn’t a vice. I have no sexual vices, just a need to communicate. And even the 8,000 prostitutes among these 10,000 were human beings.”