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  • Malden High graduates 446 at Macdonald Stadium

    Friday, June 09, 2017 00:00
  • Residents in favor of RCN coming to city

    Friday, August 25, 2017 08:53
  • Sergio Cornelio unanimously appointed City Clerk

    Saturday, August 05, 2017 09:22
  • DeRuosi’s Report Card

    Friday, August 04, 2017 10:24
  • Help choose the next Malden Reads 2018 book selection!

    Friday, June 09, 2017 00:00

News

Pioneer Charter School of Science II to participate in the College Board’s AP Capstone program

Diploma program focuses on inquiry, research and writing skills crucial for college/career success

Pioneer Charter School of Science II (PCSS II) is one of approximately 1,000 schools worldwide to implement AP Capstone – an innovative diploma program that allows students to develop the skills that matter most for college success: research, collaboration and communication. The program consists of two courses taken in sequence: AP Seminar and AP Research. Developed in direct response to feedback from higher education faculty and college admission officers, AP Capstone complements the in-depth, subject-specific study of other Advanced Placement courses and exams.

Students who earn scores of 3 or higher on AP Seminar and AP Research assessments and on four additional AP Exams of their choosing will earn the AP Capstone Diploma™. This signifies their outstanding academic achievement and attainment of college-level academic and research skills. Students who earn scores of 3 or higher on both AP Seminar and AP Research assessments only (but not on four additional AP Exams) will earn the AP Seminar and Research Certificate™. (The top score on these exams is 5.)

PCSS II will start AP Seminar in the fall of 2017

PCSS II Executive Director Vahit Sevinc said: This innovative program gets a broader, more diverse student population ready for college and beyond. The program gives our teachers more leeway with curriculum choices so their students can access more challenging coursework and sharpen their reading and writing skills. As of today there are only 16 public and private schools in Massachusetts offering the AP Capstone program but no charter public schools. Pioneer Charter School of Science II will be the first and only charter public school in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts to offer the AP Capstone program along with 10 other charter public schools nationwide.”

The AP Seminar course, typically taken in 10th or 11th grade, equips students with the ability to look at real-world issues from multiple perspectives. Through a variety of materials – articles to research studies to foundational and philosophical texts – students tackle complex questions; understand and evaluate opposing viewpoints; interpret and synthesize information; and construct, communicate, and defend evidence-based arguments. Education, innovation, sustainability and technology are examples of themes or topics covered in AP Seminar; however, teachers have the flexibility to choose subject content based on student interests, whether local, regional, national or global. By tapping into students’ personal interests, AP Capstone gives students from a wide range of backgrounds an entry point into stimulating coursework more than ever before. Students are assessed through a team project and presentation, an individual project and presentation, and an end-of-course written exam.

In the subsequent AP Research course, students design, plan and conduct a yearlong research-based investigation on a topic of individual interest, documenting their process with a portfolio. Students build on skills developed in the AP Seminar course by learning how to understand research methodology; employ ethical research practices; and collect, analyze and synthesize information to build, present and defend an argument.

“We are proud to offer AP Capstone, which enables students and teachers to focus on topics of their choice in great depth,” said Trevor Packer, senior vice president for AP and instruction at the College Board. He added, “This provides terrific opportunities for students to develop the ability to write and present their work effectively, individually and in groups – the very skills college professors want their students to possess.”

By responding to and partnering with the higher education community, the College Board developed AP Capstone so students can practice skills that will serve them well in college and career. Because the program is a result of feedback from education professionals, it is not surprising that several colleges and universities have confirmed their support for the program.

“AP Capstone is a unique program that teaches skills we think are very valuable not only for college but life,” said John Barnhill, assistant vice president for enrollment management at Florida State University. “The ability to analyze, to critically think, to present information is really wonderful, and I think both courses do a great job of preparing the student for the rest of their lives.”

About PCSS

With schools in Everett (PCSS I) and Saugus (PCSS II), Pioneer Charter School of Science offers a rigorous academic curriculum emphasizing math, science and analytical thinking skills balanced by a strong foundation in the humanities. The school offers extended days/hours and career-oriented college preparation. In order to graduate, students must pass five math and five science classes – more than state standards – and must complete 40 hours of community service. The school has a 195-day school calendar, extended days, afterschool tutoring and “voluntary” Saturday classes for students who need extra help.

About the Advanced Placement Program

The College Board’s Advanced Placement Program® (AP®) enables willing and academically prepared students to pursue college-level studies – with the opportunity to earn college credit, advanced placement or both – while still in high school. Through AP courses in 34 subjects, each culminating in a rigorous exam, students learn to think critically, construct solid arguments and see many sides of an issue – skills that prepare them for college and beyond. Taking AP courses demonstrates to college admission officers that students have sought the most rigorous curriculum available to them, and research indicates that students who score a 3 or higher on an AP Exam typically experience greater academic success in college and are more likely to earn a college degree than non-AP students. Each AP teacher’s syllabus is evaluated and approved by faculty from some of the nation’s leading colleges and universities, and AP Exams are developed and scored by college faculty and experienced AP teachers. Most four-year colleges and universities in the United States grant credit, advanced placement, or both on the basis of successful AP Exam scores – more than 3,800 institutions worldwide annually receive AP scores. In the last decade AP participation and performance rates have nearly doubled. In May 2016, 2.6 million students representing more than 21,000 schools around the world, both public and nonpublic, took over 4.7 million AP Exams.

 

 

Making it comfortable

An engineering firm will review heating and cooling options for the proposed combination High School-Middle School

Saugus High School Principal Michael Hashem and Belmonte Middle School Principal Kerry Robbins both dread certain times of the school year when students just can’t stand the heat.

“We had a girls tournament basketball game when it was up to 100 degrees in the gym,” Hashem said this week during a subcommittee meeting of the town panel involved with the planning of the proposed combination High School-Middle School.

Robbins shared her own horror story about a school building that gets too hot.

“The third floor is at least 120 degrees in May. It’s horrible,” she said.

Dominick B. Puniello, a principal of the engineering consultants hired to work with the High School Building Committee, plans to look at several different systems and study their cost-effectiveness and efficiency.

Hashem said some of the options that Puniello briefed the subcommittee on this week were too complicated and technical for him to understand.

“As long as there’s a comfortable learning environment throughout the year,” Hashem said he really didn’t have a preference.

Partial air conditioning for parts of the school will be one of the options studied.

The costs of the various options could range from $50,000 to $100,000, according to Puniello.

“We’re going to put together the cost estimates for all of the options,” Puniello said in an interview Monday.

“But the one that might cost more may be better because it’s more energy efficient. And if it’s saving a lot of energy, at the end of 30 years, it may save you more money,” he said.

   

Chili Chowder Challenge in Melrose to benefit veterans on March 18

Come enjoy what has become a popular event in our community – the Chili Chowder Challenge IV.

This event will take place on Saturday, March 18 from 11 a.m. until 2 p.m. at the Norman Prince V.F.W. Post #1506, which is located at 428 Main St. in Melrose.

With a donation of $10.00 per person, you will enjoy different chili recipes, chowders, mac ‘n’ cheese, and maybe a surprise or two! Some eateries will be there with a favorite of theirs, many local groups and organizations, perhaps a local politician or two, and a group of young people from the middle/high school.

Come experience an enjoyable couple of hours with good food, lots of socializing and camaraderie, while also supporting a very worthwhile cause. This is a special sort of FUNdraiser benefiting local Desert Storm veterans who will make up this year’s trip to Washington, D.C.

Mark your calendars and come down to the Prince VFW Post on Saturday, March18 and experience a great time for a great cause!

   

THE SOUNDS OF SAUGUS

H

ere are a few tidbits that you might want to know about this week in Saugus.

Powerless in the storm

Tuesday turned out to be a brutal storm day for Saugus residents. At one point, more than 4,000 homes and businesses found themselves without electricity – some for as long as six hours. That’s about a third of the town that was inconvenienced by the disruption, according to National Grid.

I ran into a number of residents who were affected the storm, which led to Tuesday’s cancellation of school and the closing of public buildings throughout the town. Many of the people affected were elderly residents.

Storm-delayed trash collection

Due to this week’s snowstorm, the town’s trash and recycling collection was cancelled on Tuesday and collection will run on a one-day delay through tomorrow (Saturday). Contact Solid Waste/Recycling Coordinator Lorna Cerbone at 81-231-4036 with any questions.

“Books in Bloom” floral design show

The Saugus Garden Club and New Friends of the Saugus Public Library are again cosponsoring “Books in Bloom.” This unique floral design show is set for today (Friday, March 17), from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. and tomorrow (Saturday, March 18), from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

For these two days, the library will host beautiful floral arrangements interpreting a book’s title, cover or theme in displays set up throughout the building. The public is invited to participate by entering an exhibit or just to drop by the library to admire the pretty flowers. A great opportunity for a creative person with a green thumb – what a great event for spring.

For details, contact Saugus Garden Club Co-Presidents Lorraine DiMilla (781-233-7541 or This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ) and Donna Manoogian (781-233-5640 or This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ).

Not a bad way to welcome in the spring, even if the snow is not done yet.

One angry board

Superintendent of Schools Dr. David DeRuosi, Jr. and the Saugus School Committee have adopted the slogan “One Town, One Team: Building a Stronger Saugus” as they seek backing – financial and people-wise – in their efforts to build a better education system. As noble as their intentions might be, a majority of the School Committee members contradicted that idealistic goal at least Thursday’s School Committee meeting.

Hats off to Linda Gaieski, the lone School Committee member who refrained from getting into petty squabbles with her colleagues or making disparaging comments about them.

On a night when committee members offered some great praise about student accomplishments – particularly Elizabeth Marchese’s glowing tribute to the fabulous Saugus High School girls’ basketball team (“You have broken the gender barrier at Saugus High School and united the whole school.”) – members spoiled what should have been a happy night with their uncivil and childish behavior.

No need to waste time and space on replaying the spectacle in this column. Interested readers can view it for themselves on Saugus TV. It’s okay to disagree, and that is the nature of local government. But show some respect for your colleagues and for the citizens who attend the meetings or tune-in on cable to be informed.

The night would have been an image-boosting and a morale-building affair had committee members skipped the nonsense. Then again, this is an election year. Isn’t it?

A new seating plan for the superintendent

Poor Superintendent of Schools Dr. David DeRuosi, Jr.! He’s gonna have to move from the side table in the School Committee room to join the School Committee members at future meetings. At least on a trial basis. That comes as a result of a new seating plan approved by the members.

“I’d like to see him join the team – one town-one team,” School Committee Chairman Jeannie Meredith said.

Another member who seemed to like it was Linda Gaieski. “I always feel it’s adversarial … He’s over there and we’re talking at him,” she said.

Arthur Grabowski said he prefers to be look at the superintendent, face to face – when he’s talking. Grabowski also said he shared Gaieski’s sentiments that the current seating plan with the superintendent sitting at a table off to the side feels “adversarial.”

Gaieski also hopes the new seating plan will enable her to have eye contact with the superintendent.

“What’s your good side, Dr. DeRuosi?” School Committee Vice Chairman Peter Manoogian asked. “It doesn’t make a big difference to me,” Manoogian added.

It might actually work out. The committee members might be less inclined to spar with each other with Dr. DeRuosi sitting with them. If they do act up, the superintendent can play the role of peacemaker.

Lady Sachems make Saugus proud

The Saugus High School basketball team, coached by Mark Schruender, became the first girls’ basketball team in more than three decades to win a conference title. The Lady Sachems finished with a 16-6 record. That’s a far cry better than their season two years ago, when they won just one of 22 games. No question, the girls were the highlight of the night.

Kudos to Saugus TV

Speaking of cable TV, here’s some good news: The Telly Awards has named Saugus TV as a Bronze winner in the 38th Annual Telly Awards for their piece titled “Saugus TV Stop-Motion Promo.”

Here’s a press release sent to us by Executive Director Bryan Nadeau:

SaugusTV

With over 13,000 entries from all 50 states and numerous countries, this is truly an honor for the local station.

The Telly Awards was founded in 1979 and is the premier award honoring outstanding local, regional and cable TV commercials and programs, the finest video and film productions, and online commercials, video and films. Winners represent the best work of the most respected advertising agencies, production companies, television stations, cable operators, and corporate video departments in the world.

For its 38th season, The Telly Awards once again gave the public the power to view and rate videos submitted as part of the People’s Telly Awards. In addition to recognition from the Silver Telly Council, the judging panel that selects the Telly Awards winners, the Internet community helps decide the People’s Telly Awards winners.

A prestigious judging panel of over 500 accomplished industry professionals, each a past winner of a Silver Telly and a member of The Silver Telly Council, judged the competition, upholding the historical standard of excellence that Telly represents. The Silver Council evaluated entries to recognize distinction in creative work – entries do not compete against each other – rather entries are judged against a high standard of merit. Less than 10 percent of entries are chosen as Winners of the Silver Telly, our highest honor.

Approximately 25 percent of entries are chosen as Winners of the Bronze Telly.

“The Telly Awards has a mission to honor the very best in film and video,” said Linda Day, Executive Director of the Telly Awards. “Saugus TV’s accomplishment illustrates their creativity, skill, and dedication to their craft and serves as a testament to great film and video production.”

The Saugus TV Stop-Motion Promo is a 2 minute public service announcement for the station, encouraging residents with great ideas to utilize the public access station to make those ideas come to life. The process used to create this spot is called Stop-Motion Animation, where multiple still pictures were taken of cutout figures in different positions. When those pictures are put together in the editing process, those cutouts appear animated.

“We are excited to bring an award to Saugus TV. Hopefully it brings awareness to the town that anyone can produce something special.” says Michelle Madar and John Prudent, Co Producers of Saugus TV Stop-Motion Promo. To view the winning entry, go to www.vimeo.com/182201676.

To find out more about the Telly Awards visit www.tellyawards.com.

Countdown to Annual Town Meeting

It’s still a couple of months away. But selectmen are already gearing up for the Annual Town Meeting, which is set for Monday, May 1. Selectmen recently announced that they will close the Annual Town Meeting Warrant at their April 12 regular business meeting. Anyone who has an article they want to be inserted in the warrant may submit it to the selectmen’s office at Town Hall or bring it to the April 12 meeting, which begins at 7:30 p.m. in the second floor auditorium of Town Hall, at 298 Central St.

SAVE 2017 Environmental Scholarship available

Here’s some good news for college-bound Saugus students. Saugus Action Volunteers for the Environment (SAVE) is offering a $500 Environmental Scholarship to Saugus residents of the Graduating Class of 2017. This is a scholarship for students who will be attending a two/four-year college or other educational institution and pursuing a degree in an area that would positively impact the environment.

Applicants can download the SAVE 2017 Environmental Scholarship Application Form found at www.saugusSAVE.org or www.saugus.org/SAVE or www.saugusSAVE.com. SAVE requests that applicants, in addition to the completed application form, include a separate sheet (identified with your name, address and high school) that provides a brief summary of any of your activities relating to the environment and that describes how you feel your career choice will positively impact the environment.

Applications should be mailed (postmarked by April 21, 2017) to SAVE, P.O. Box 908, Saugus, MA 01906. You may also email your application (no later than midnight on April 21, 2017) to the SAVE President, Ann Devlin, at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

Columbarium Niche Sale

The Town of Saugus Cemetery Department announced that spring grounds cleanup will begin at the Riverside Cemetery on Monday, March 27. The Cemetery Commission kindly asks members of the public to remove any personal and/or holiday/seasonal items from the grounds before the cleanup begins.

In addition, the Cemetery Department announced the sale of double niches in the North and South columbarium towers. Each double niche costs $1,375.00 and allows two cremations per niche. This fee includes the installation cost of the niche plaque. Niche purchases must be made with a bank check or money order payable to Town of Saugus Riverside Cemetery. Additional costs for the purchase of a niche plaque are payable to the monument company based on the selection made with them.

Those interested in purchasing a niche or who have questions, please contact the Cemetery Department at 781-231-4170 or stop by the office, which is located at 164 Winter St., Monday through Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

The Easter Bunny is coming!

If you’d like to have your little ones meet the Easter Bunny, he’ll hopping around the Square One Mall on Friday, March 24 in the Center Court. The Bunny will sign autographs from noon to 2 p.m. after he arrives at the “Spring Garden.”

So, bring your cameras and kids. Or, you can save time and avoid the line with Bunny by Appointment. Now you can reserve your magical moment with the bunny online at http://simon.noerrbunny.com.

The Bunny Photo Experience will run through Saturday, April 15. Kids will have a chance to visit the Bunny and take home a treasured snapshot of the fun occasion.

The famous Saugus calendars are out!

The 2017 Saugus Historical Society Calendars are available at Town Hall, the Saugus Public Library, the Senior Center and at several area businesses whose advertisements appear in its pages.

This year’s calendar has the same features, such as ample writing space and wonderful old photos of town scenes that residents, former residents, and other friends of the town have said they love. Railroad aficionados will be especially pleased to see the picture of a train on the Saugus Branch Railroad as it stops at Essex Street Crossing near the Anna Parker Playground, which was contributed by Allen Humphries. Another wonderful picture most people will not have seen before is the old Masonic Hall of the William Sutton Lodge AF and AM on Chestnut Street. This was a pale yellow building with fan designs over the windows. This hall survived two fires and was used by the lodge until 1963. The lodge itself will be 150 years old this October. It has occupied two other buildings in the years since and is presently at the First Congregational Church in Saugus Center.

The Saugus Historical Society extends its grateful appreciation to the following individuals and organizations who assisted in the preparation of the 2017 calendar: George W. Brown, Jayne Parrott, Eric W. Brown, Saugus.net, Carolyn Brown, Gabriel Farhat, Park Press Printers and the many local sponsors. This year’s sponsors include Bisbee-Porcella Funeral Home; Carbone and Sons, Inc. Autobody; Nelson Chang, Esq.; GCA Jewelers; George Gregson Law Offices; Kowalsky Insurance Agency, Inc.; Kowloon Restaurant; Law Offices of Thomas F. Colonna and William P. Doyle III; Richard Magnan, Attorney at Law; Nickole Auto Body; North Shore Bank; Park Press Printers; Peter A. Rossetti Insurance Agency, Inc.; RESCO/Wheelabrator Environmental Systems; Russo’s Fine Chocolates; Saugus.net; Saugus Business Partnership; Saugus Federal Credit Union; ShellTown; and Stefano’s Landscaping.

The Saugus Historical Society is a nonprofit organization dedicated to preserving the history of Saugus and educating the public in local history. It is supported by its members and receives no funds from the town. Those with an interest in history are encouraged to join. For more information email Laura Eisener at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or phone 781-231-5988. Upcoming programs include Stephen Carlson on April 12 on “Historic Preservation in Saugus” and Tim Hawkes on May 10 on “Vinegar Hill.” Meetings are held the second Wednesday of the month in March, April, May, September, October and November of each year. The popular Strawberry Festival with its old fashioned strawberry shortcake and more is held on the third Saturday in June – in 2017 it will be June 17.

Let’s hear it!

Got an idea, passing thought or gripe you would like to share with The Saugus Advocate? I’m always interested in your feedback. It’s been a year since I began work at The Saugus Advocate. I’m always interested in hearing readers’ suggestions for possible stories or good candidates for “The Advocate Asks” interview of the week. Feel free to email me at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

Troop 62 plans a May golf tournament

Plans are shaping up at Saugus Boy Scout Troop 62, which will be hosting its 1st annual golf tournament on May 15 at Four Oaks Country Club in Dracut. Stay tuned for more details as plans unfold as the date draws closer

Coming attractions at the Saugus Public Library

Here’s a few events that Saugus Public Library Director Brian Hodgdon says are worth checking out:

Free After School Homework Help at the Saugus Public Library

The SPL is partnering with the Belmonte Middle School to offer free, drop-in homework help to Saugus elementary school students to help foster strong academic and study skills outside of school hours. Here are the details:

  • · Homework Help is in session and runs Tuesdays and Thursdays from 3 to 4 p.m. in the Community Room at the Saugus Public Library.
  • · Homework helpers are National Junior Honor Society students from the Belmonte Middle School.
  • · This program is open to students in grades K-5.
  • · No registration is required, but students must be signed in/out by a parent or guardian.
  • · Parent or guardian must remain on library grounds while student is receiving homework assistance.
  • · Subjects: math • science • grammar • reading • social studies • geography & others.
  • · For more information, visit www.sauguspubliclibrary.org/children/homework, where you’ll also find online resources for a variety of grade levels as well as free test-prep help from The College Board and others.
  • · Email This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it with any questions.

Town Compost/Recycling Drop-Off Site’s Winter Schedule

The Town of Saugus Compost/Recycling Drop-Off Site will open to residents on Saturday, March 18. The site, which is located at 515 Main St., will be open from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. and will return to its regular hours in mid-April. Please contact Solid Waste/Recycling Coordinator Lorna Cerbone at 781-231-4036 with any questions.

 

   

Saugus Middle School Basketball Defeats Revere, 54-45

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Shown are members of the Saugus Middle School basketball team, from left to right: (front row) Donovan Clark, Matt MacEachern, Michael Howard, Tommy Falasca, Anthony Macone, Ryan Mabee, (back row) Ryan Anderson, Mark MacEachern, Sean Gillespie, Sean O’Rourke, Tyrone Manderson.

 

   

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