Monday, August 31, 2015

Back-to-school coffee for all parents & guardians, Fri, Sept 4th, 8:45 am

Hope you can make it.   An evening coffee will be scheduled later this fall for families for whom that is more convenient.

(click to enlarge) 

la primera reunion del año y café para las Familias de Crocker Farm, 4 de septiembre

ARPS bus schedules for this school year are now available online

The bus schedules were posted on the ARPS web site earlier today.
Here's the link:

First Day Celebration 2015

from the ARPS web site

All families, staff and community members are invited to the annual First Day Celebration on Tuesday, September 1 from 5:00-6:30 p.m. on the Amherst town common.  Enjoy FREE pony rides, magic shows, disc golf, hula hoops, games, arts and crafts, music, dance and more! Visit the community partner tables to learn about local education, health and safety organizations. UMASS and Amherst College mascots, athletes and cheerleaders will make appearances. School bus tours and bus routes will be available. Local police and fire departments will demonstrate safety equipment, and the Amherst Lions Club will conduct vision screenings.  Free parking is available in the large lot at Amherst Regional High School, and the BID Trolley will bring guests to/from the Town Common from 4:45-6:45pm.  Bring a picnic dinner from home or a local restaurant and visit with friends, teachers, town officials and school staff.  If inclement weather is forecasted, the event will be held in the ARHS Cafeteria (21 Mattoon Street).   For more information, view the PSA about this much-anticipated community event here.


Todas las familias, personal y miembros de la comunidad están invitados a la celebración anual del Primer día de Clases el martes 1º de septiembre. El evento se llevará a cabo en el Centro del pueblo de Amherst de 5:00-6:30 p.m. Disfrute GRATITUAMENTE de paseos en pony, espectáculos de magia, golf de disco, aros de hula, juegos, artes y artesanías, música, danza y mucho más! VisitE las mesas asociadas de la comunidad para aprender acerca de las organizaciones locales de educación, salud y seguridad. Las mascotas, los atletas y porrista de la Universidad de Massachusetts y Amherst College harán participaciones en el evento. Recorridos en autobús y rutas de autobuses escolares estaran disponible. Los viajes del autobús escolares y las rutas del autobús estarán disponibles. El departamentos de la policía y los bomberos locales estaran disponible para demostraciones de equipo de seguridad y el Club de Leones de Amherst llevará a cabo exámenes de la vista.  Aparcamiento gratuito disponible en el lote grande de Amherst Regional High School. El BID Trolley llevará invitados al / desde el Centro del pueblo de Amherst de 4:45-6:45 p.m.  Traiga una cena de picnic del hogar o en un restaurante local. Visite con amigos, maestros, funcionarios municipales y el personal escolar.  Si se pronostica mal tiempo, el evento se llevará a cabo en la Cafetería de ARHS (21 Mattoon Street).  Disfrute del PSA para conocer más acerca de este evento comunitario tan esperado.

Community Survey on regional MS-HS consolidation

from the web site

A community-wide survey is currently available electronically and in paper form in order to collect information from our citizens and families about the possibility of consolidating the Regional Middle and High Schools into a single building.  The exploration of this possible consolidation is the result of a significant funding gap at the Regional level, as well as a declining student population.  Additionally, the study is the result of questions from the leaders of our four towns about when and whether such consolidation might occur.

Representative Ellen Story and the Amherst-Pelham Regional School District will convene a “Hurricane Revisioning Summit” on November 7, 2015 that will bring together community stakeholders from the district towns to participate in facilitated discussions about this proposed consolidation initiative and the financial, educational, and social opportunities and challenges it presents, including repurposing of the middle school building and potential enhancement of educational and community programming.  The District has engaged the services of the Massachusetts Office of Public Collaboration (MOPC) at the University of Massachusetts Boston to conduct this community survey and to design and facilitate the Summit.  MOPC does not recommend outcomes or solutions, but instead facilitates a neutral and inclusive public process designed to allow everyone to be heard, to be listened to, and to gain a better understanding of the issues. 
 As part of its facilitation role, MOPC is administering the community-wide survey to collect confidential input that will help frame issues for discussion at the November 7th Summit and help ensure broad participation in the process and inclusion of all perspectives around planning for the future of the schools.  This survey is currently available online in English here and in Spanish here.  

All Amherst, Leverett, Pelham and Shutesbury residents and other interested stakeholders are encouraged to participate in this confidential survey that will be available through Friday, September 25, 2015.  

Wildwood Building Study Updates

The ARPS administration has created a facebook page for the Wildwood School building study to help share information on the project. The link is here (Wildwood Building Study). 

Last week, the architecture firm and project manager for the study made a presentation to the Amherst School Committee. Their presentation can be viewed at this Amherst Media link, and the powerpoint slides can be seen here.  

Community forums for the Wildwood Building Project will be held on Sept 29th at 3:30 pm and 7:00 pm, in the ARMS auditorium.  The presentation will be same at both meetings.   


Before School Care Offered at the Amherst elementary schools

The Before School Child Care Program is offered in each of our elementary schools. If interested you may enroll directly at each school or click here for the Amherst Schools Application. 

For more information, including fee subsidy availability for the Amherst Schools, please contact Jim Regan, Out of School Time Coordinator, by email at or by phone at (413) 362-1818 .

Cuido de Niños de Antes de la Escuela de Amherst

El Programa de Cuidado de Niños de Antes de la Escuela se ofrece en cada una de nuestras escuelas primarias. Si está interesado, puede inscribirse directamente en cada escuela o presione aquí para la solicitud de las Escuelas de Amherst.

Para obtener más información, incluyendo la disponibilidad de subsidios de pago de las escuelas de Amherst, por favor póngase en contacto con Jim Regan, Coordinador de Programas Fuera del Tiempo Escolar.  Por correo electrónico a o por teléfono al (413) 362-1818.
Para más detalles sobre el Programa de la Escuela de Pelham, por favor póngase en contacto con la Principal de la escuela,  Lisa Desjarlais al (413) 362-1100.

Start of School Letter from Mr. Shea & Ms. Conklin

This is the same letter that the Crocker Farm office sent out earlier in Aug.  

Dear Parents/Guardians,
Ms. Conklin and I would like to warmly welcome you to the 2015-2016 school year at Crocker Farm School. Although our building is quieter than usual, I can tell you that many of our teachers are back at work, diligently preparing classrooms for the beginning of the school. In addition, Mr. Stedman and his custodial team are cleaning, polishing and shining the entire school.
Today, Wednesday August 19, Ms. Aldrich mailed a placement card to the home of all three hundred and seventy-five students enrolled in grades K-6. I would expect that card to arrive at your home sometime on Thursday or Friday of this week. We spent many hours reviewing the placement of our students. Please know that teacher placement is final. We will only consider adjustments if there are serious extenuating circumstances that you think need to be considered.
Our classroom line-up for 2015-2016 is as follows:
Kindergarten: Ms. McCloskey, Ms. Newcomb and Ms. Pratt (3 classrooms)
1st grade: Ms. Bartolini and Ms. Donoghue (2 classrooms)|
nd grade: Ms. Carson, Mr. Lefebvre and Ms. Mattone (3 classrooms)
rd grade: Ms. Joyce, Ms. Perkins and Ms. Robinson (3 classrooms)
th grade: *Ms. Coley and Ms. Dougherty, Ms. Moriarty and Ms. Radtke (3 classrooms)
th grade: Ms. Donovan, Ms. Goodwin-Brown, and  *Mr. Hughes and Mr. Borrell (3 classrooms)
th grade: *Ms. Harvey and Ms. Millay, and Mr. Prather (2 classrooms)
*We have three co-taught classrooms in place for next year.  In these classrooms, two teachers, a classroom teacher and special education teacher, will both share teaching responsibilities.   Our school district is moving towards a more inclusive model to meet the needs of all students in the classroom.  Last school year and this summer, these teachers took part in additional trainings and workshops.  More to come on our work with this teaching model.
·         First Day of School for grades 1-6: Wednesday September 2.
·         First Day of School for Kindergarten: Friday September 4.
·         Bus schedules are busily being prepared. During the week of August 24 routes will be posted on the website, as well as printed in both the Daily Hampshire Gazette and Amherst Bulletin.

We look forward to seeing all of our students very soon. Please do not hesitate to call the school if you have any questions (362-1600).
Best for now,
Mr. Shea and Ms. Conklin

Carta del Sr. Shea & Sra. Conklin

Estimados Padres / Tutores,
Sra Conklin y a mí nos gustaría darle una cálida bienvenida al año escolar 2015-2016 en Crocker Granja Escuela. Aunque nuestro edificio está más tranquilo que de costumbre, les puedo decir que muchos de nuestros maestros están de vuelta en el trabajo, en la preparación diligente de los salones de clase para el comienzo de la escuela. Además el Sr. Stedman y su equipo de conserjes están limpiando, puliendo y resplandeciendo de toda la escuela.
Hoy, miércoles 19 de agosto, la Sra Aldrich enviará por correo una tarjeta de colocación para el hogar de todos los trescientos setenta y cinco estudiantes matriculados en los grados K-6. Esperamos que la tarjeta este llegando a su hogar en algún momento el jueves o el viernes de esta semana. Pasamos muchas horas revisando la colocación de nuestros estudiantes. Por favor sepan que la colocación de maestro es final. Sólo consideraremos ajustes si hay circunstancias atenuantes serias que usted piensa que sea necesario considerar.
Nuestra alineación de salón de clases para 2015-2016 es el siguiente:
Kindergarten: Sra.  McCloskey, la Sra. Newcomb y la Sra Pratt (3 salones de clase)
1st grado: Sra. Bartolini y la Sra. Donoghue (2 salones de clase)
2nd grado: Sra. Carsonel Sr. y la Sra. Lefebvre Mattone (3 salones de clase)
3rd grado: Sra. Joyce, la Sra. Perkins y Sra. Robinson (3 de los salones de clase)
4th grado: * Sra. Coley y la Sra. Dougherty, Sra. Moriarty y la Sra. Radtke (3 salones de clase)
5th grado: Sra. Donovan,  Sra. Goodwin-Brown, y * Sr. Hughes y el Sr. Borrell (3 salones de clase)
6th grado: * Sra. Harvey y la Sra. Millay, y el Sr. Prather (2 salones de clase)

* Tenemos tres salones de clase de co-enseñado establecidos para el próximo año. En estos salones, tienen dos maestros, un maestro de salón de clases y un maestro de educación especial,  ambos responsables  de la enseñanza. Nuestro distrito escolar se está moviendo hacia un modelo más integrador para satisfacer las necesidades de todos los estudiantes en el salón. El último año escolar y el verano, estos maestros han estado participado en cursos de formación y talleres adicionales. Y hay más por venir en nuestro de trabajo con este modelo de enseñanza.

• Primer día de clases para los grados 1-6: miércoles 2 de septiembre.
• Primer día de clases para Kindergarten: viernes 4 de septiembre.
• Diligentemente se están preparando horarios de autobuses. Durante la semana del 24 de agosto las rutas se publicarán en la página web, así como impresos tanto en el Hampshire Gaceta Diario y Boletín Amherst.

Esperamos ver a todos nuestros estudiantes muy pronto. Por favor, no dude en llamar a la escuela si usted tiene alguna pregunta (362-1600).

Sr. Shea y Sra. Conklin

Sunday, August 9, 2015

School Calendar - School Starts the Week of Aug 31st

School starts Wed, Sept 2nd for students in 1st-12th grades.
Kindergarteners starts on Fri, Sept 4th, and have orientation earlier in the week.

The full school calendar for the year can also be viewed on the web site
Please note the early dismissal days and school closure days.

Upcoming event:
* ARPS First Day Celebration, Tuesday, Sept 1st, 5-6:30 pm
Amherst Town Common.  Rain location: ARHS cafeteria, same time/date.

(click on the calendar below to enlarge it)

ARPS Project Backpack & Car Seat Help

Donations for Project Backpack accepted through Aug 15th

Backpacks and school supplies will be distributed to income-qualifying families on August 20-21 at the ARPS Family Center (located within the Amherst Regional Middle School) from 9:00 a.m.-3:00 p.m. Also during those distribution hours, reps from the Amherst Police & Fire Departments, UMass Police Department & Safe Kids of Western Massachusetts/ Baystate Children’s Hospital will be installing new infant & toddler car seats.

New backpacks & school supplies will be accepted through August 15th at the locations listed below.
ARPS Family Center at 170 Chestnut St.
DeMaio Orthodontics at 23 Pray St.
Grace Episcopal Church at 14 Boltwood Ave.

Requested School Supplies
Pre-K- Fifth Grade: new backpacks, notebooks, 2-pocket folders, glue sticks, markers, crayons, pencils, pens (blue/black/red), colored pencils, pencil sharpeners, pencil cases, bookmarks, rulers, scissors

  6-12 Grade: new backpacks, assignment pads, notebooks, loose leaf paper, 2-pocket folders, 3-ring binders, 3-ring pencil cases, highlighters, post-it notes, index cards, calculators (basic, scientific, or graphing), flash drives, pens (blue/black/red), pencils, combination locks for lockers
“Our goal is to help ease the financial burden the start of the school year can mean for many families,” states Superintendent Maria Geryk.  “Project Backpack is a great success due in part to the generosity of individuals and community partners. In 2014, over 465 backpacks with supplies were distributed and over 60 car seats were installed. I am deeply grateful for the community’s support of this initiative.”

For more information please contact Kimberly Stender at (413)-362-1825 or

Joint School Committee Meeting, Mon, Aug 10th

Joint Meeting of the Amherst, Pelham, Amherst Pelham Regional & Union 26 School Committees
Monday, August 10th, 5 pm
Amherst Regional High School Library

The agenda includes a discussion and vote on the Superintendent's evaluation for the 2013-2014 school year, & a discussion on the 1993 agreement made between the school district and the Amherst branch of the NAACP, re: issues of racial disparity, & the Amherst NAACP's continuing concerns. 

The full agenda & the packet of materials for the School Committee meeting are available on the web site (SC_packet_here). 

Amherst Survival Center Trash to Treasures - September 12th

Cleaning out your house? Moving?

TRASH TO TREASURES - Amherst's Annual Gently Used Furniture Sale
SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 12th, 9am to 3pm
All proceeds benefit Amherst Survival Center programs.

The Amherst Survival Center is currently collecting (picking up) furniture donations & our trailers are filling up! All furniture donations are tax deductible. Call 549-3968 ext 308 [corrected phone number] or email

Learn more about the Amherst Survival Center at the center's web site:

Final Thanks for 2014-2015

As the new school year approaches, the Crocker Farm PGO just wanted to give one final statement of thanks to everyone who volunteered and helped with PGO activities or events in any way big or small last year, and to all those who made financial contributions to help fund the PGO and our activities to support the school community, our teachers and staff, and Crocker Farm students.  Thank you again!  

The PGO would also like specifically to recognize the volunteers who played a big role in the following activities & events, & helped make them successful.  Thank you. 
PGO Board members helped with many of these as well. :)

Welcome Back Breakfast for Staff: Rebecca Woodland 
Monthly PGO Coffees with the Principal & Special Guests: Lucy McMurrer & Maria Kopicki
Fall Harvest Fest:  Heather Lord
School Family Directory: Becky Demling
Chess Club:  Dave Higham, David Schmidt
Bus Driver Appreciation Breakfast:  Eva Fairchild
Used Book Swap:  Cammie McGovern, Marla Jamate
End of School Year Staff Appreciation Luncheon:  Susan Bernier
Crocker Press:  Jeni Kaplan
PGO Blog:  Jennifer Page
Crocker Farm Garden:  Sylvia Keochakian
Crocker Farm Garden Bench Restoration: Greg Keochakian
Crocker Farm Yearbook: Rie Traub, Becky Demling
Crocker Farm Graduation Slideshow:  Ilana Beigel, Ian Camera, Rebecca Woodland

Grant Applications for Arts Performance Field Trips: A. Rima Dael, Isolda Ortega-Bustamante
Barnes and Noble Crocker Farm Bookfair: Justyne Ogdahl, Leticia Davies, Agnes Zsigmondi, & Becca Greene-Van Horn
Ski & Skate Fundraiser: Justyne Ogdahl
Valley Gives Fundraiser:  Becky Demling, Tim Demling
Hillside Pizza Fundraiser:  Justyne Ogdahl, Stephanie Osman
Annual Appeal/Lend-A-Hand:  Erica Boerman
Box Tops Fundraiser: Marcia Turner
Dean’s Beans Fundraiser:  Jessica Lamson
Atkins Shopping Card Fundraiser: Amanda Lawall
6th Grade Graduation Fundraising:  Becky Demling

2014-2015 Class Parents: 
Wendy Bergoffen, Michelle Chandler, Becky Demling, Vira Douangmany Cage, Eva Fairchild, Tina Furcolo, Micaela Giles, Melissa Giraud, Ginny Hamilton, Phoebe Hazzard, Aneeka Henderson, Hallie Hughes, Asha Kinney, Mary Klaes, Maria Kopicki, Kate Lambert, Amanda Lawall, Qingmiao Li, Heather Lord, Aline Lyra, Stacey MacPhetres, Ada Matos , Melissa Matos-Auerbach, Dana Olivo, Isolda Ortega-Bustamante, Allegra Osborne, Jennifer Restucci, Katie Rubinstein, Rebecca Woodland