Saturday, October 31, 2009

Are you looking for work?

Do you know someone looking for work?

You are not alone. With unemployment at 13% in RI and 9.3% in MA, there are lots of folks out of work and looking.

There is a heavy population of those 40+ looking for work. There is also a significant number of recent college graduates out looking for work.

In the course of my own job search effort, one thing became evident: the power of we. Who you know is as important as what you know. By talking with each other, sharing our experiences, sharing what has worked or didn't work. By networking with each, sharing our connections, who knows who, we can help each other get a better connection to the next position.

With as many resumes being submitted for each job posting, the pile for the hiring manager is overwhelming. How do you get out of the pile? Your network!

A core group my connections who understand the "power of we" are working hard to put together the LaidOff Camp. The camp will facilitate the best practices of the job search effort. In one afternoon, over the course of four hours, you'll be able to participate in a session to help your own individual job search effort. Sessions on networking, using LinkedIn, interview tips, a practice interview session and others are being planned for this event.

This is a non-profit effort. The $10 charge will simply allow us to cover the facility fee and provide some refreshments during the afternoon.

For this small dollar cost, you will walk away with more knowledge, more connections and hopefully more confidence in taking the next step in your job search effort.

You should visit the LaidOff Camp website to register.

You should tell whomever you know that is looking for work about this event.

We are in this together and the 'power of we' can help us to success!

A sample of recent posts to the LaidOff Camp website:

This was originally posted on Steve's 2 Cents

Friday, October 30, 2009

Downtown Partnership prepares for Holiday Stroll

Don't Miss Out on Free Advertising for your business!

If you are interested in participating in the upcoming Downtown Holiday Stroll Event on December 3rd please contact us by November 3rd.  The event will include Tree Lighting Ceremony, Music, Holiday Singing, and much more.

Participating Retailers will be listed on flyers, posters, website and Press Releases. This is free for FDP members!

All interested retailers must e-mail the Franklin Downtown Partnership at attn: Lisa no later than November 3rd  in order to be included in the Stroll.


Retailers should submit a short one line description of what activity or special holiday offering they will have for visitors. This is for the flyer and poster. A two sentence description should be submitted for the press release. Depending on the number of participants and the room available the Holiday Stroll Committee may need to edit this information.

Note:  Sponsors will be given first priority and a large listing on all promotional materials.  If you would like to be a $100 bronze sponsor please contact the FDP office at (774)571-3109 by November 1st.

Gov Patrick on the state budget cuts

Franklin appears to be dodging reductions in State Aid as Chapter 70 and local aid are referenced in this video by Governor Patrick.

J.F. Kennedy School PCC plans recycling fundraiser

Sent to you by Steve Sherlock via Google Reader:

via Wicked Local Franklin News RSS by GateHouse Media, Inc. on 10/29/09

 The J.F. Kennedy Parent Communication Council (PCC) will hold a recycling fundraising event on Saturday, Oct. 31, 9 a.m.-12 p.m. at the J.F. Kennedy Elementary School parking lot, Pond Street, Franklin.

Bring clean redeemable bottles and cans. No water bottles. The group will also accept computers, electronics and appliances for recycling. Fees for these items vary from $5-$20. All computer hard drives will be destroyed and items will be properly handled by our professional recycler.

Proceeds from this fundraiser will be used by the PCC for educational programs for the J.F. Kennedy Elementary School students.

For more information contact Blanca Di Giacomo at

Things you can do from here:

Chamber Job Fair - Wed Nov 5th 10:00 - 2:00

Job Help is on the Way!

The United Regional Chamber of Commerce, in conjunction with Living Waters Church, is sponsoring Employment Workshops and a Job Fair on Nov. 5 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Living Waters Church, 15 John L. Dietsch Blvd., North Attleborough. Companies that are actively hiring, as well as representatives from educational facilities, will be at the event.

Do you or someone you know need to sharpen your job search skills? Then you are welcome to attend this free event!

The following workshops will be offered in two sessions (10:30 a.m. to 11:15 a.m.) and (11:30 a.m. to 12:15 p.m.):
          * Ten Tips for the Tongue Tied
          * Interview Tips for the Non-Salesperson
          * Develop a Marketing Plan for Your Job Search
          * 10 Most Common Interview Mistakes

Need a resume? We can help you prepare your resume and print it on the spot.

In the News - candidates

The line up of Town Council candidates is reviewed in the paper today.

Meet the candidates for Franklin Town Council

from The Milford Daily News News RSS

You can also review the Election Collection here.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

The Body Mass Index (BMI) controversy

What is the story about the Body Mass Index (BMI) discussion at the School Committee meeting on 10/27/09?

  1. The school district nurses have been recording height and weight of students for years
  2. Some of the School Committee members were unaware of this detail
  3. The State has changed the regulations to use the height/weight data obtained to calculate the student’s BMI to send to the parents for use in discussions with the family physicians
  4. The district could loose $43,000 in grant money over 11 years if they are not in compliance
  5. Compliance with the BMI process would mean the nurses would take less measurements of student’s height/weight. Only certain grades would be required for measurement. 
  6. Non-compliance would require taking measurements of all students across all grade levels
  7. Regulation language provided was not clear in what the new vs. old requirements were
  8. Some School Committee members objected to the intrusion of the schools into a patient/physician relationship
  9. Some School Committee members see the bigger benefit of providing the BMI information to the parents to help address the overweight and related health issues associated with the youth today

End result of discussion Tuesday
The policy draft was voted not to move to a Second Reading by a 4-3 vote.

What does this mean?
The policy draft goes back to the subcommittee to address the questions that were raised before coming back to the full committee.

Note: two of the four votes against the policy are leaving the School Committee. Cora Armenio is not running for re-election. Matt Kelly is running for Town Council. The positions of the next two members of the School Committee are unknown.

Should this be an issue to go back and challenge the State on to fund their mandate? For about $40,000?

The privacy issue is one to fight but the case in this circumstance I think is weak. Privacy rules already cripple teachers and I don't hear anyone raising an issue with those.

If your child requires medication at school and the regular teacher has a substitute, did you know that the regular teacher can not leave information about your child's special requirements?
If your child has a severe allergic reaction to something like peanuts, did you know the classroom teacher can not provide a list of these needs to the supervisory personnel for their recess time when the regular teacher won't always be on duty?

I think these are more life threatening issues that privacy rules currently hinder. 

Isn't the BMI a measurement as simple as taking one's temperature? Would it violate someone's privacy to let the parents know the child is running a temperature?

You can respond with a comment or answer the poll question on the top of the center column:

Should your school measure BMI to report to you and your physician? Yes or No

In the News - Franklin Candidates, write in for Assessor

The candidate forum at the Senior Center seems to have been quite informative. I recommend clicking through to read the full article. There are several good quotes from the candidates that would help make a decision on who would best sit on the Town Council to address Franklin's problems.

Franklin candidates speak to seniors

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

School Committee Mtg 10/27/09

The collection of posts live reported from the School Committee meeting on Tuesday October 27th are

Slideshare slows page

In case you notice that the page is loading slowly today, I have as well. It seems to be related to the SlideShare posted yesterday as part of the School Committee meeting.

I'll need to find another service to use to post slides in that format. In the meantime, I hope it doesn't slow down reading the pages too much. If it does, I'll remove the slides until I find a better tool.

Please let me know if it is hindering your reading!

In the News - BMI, MCAS

As the School Committee voted down the policy change by a 4-3 vote and 2 of the votes against this measure are leaving the committee, the next time this comes up could indeed be a different story.

Franklin school officials debate weighing students

from The Milford Daily News Homepage RSS 


As mentioned here previously, the growth model for MCAS has been released.

State releases new way to evaluate MCAS scores

How Did Test Scores Become King?

Sent to you by Steve Sherlock via Google Reader:

via ASCD Inservice by ASCD Bloggers on 10/27/09

Post submitted by guest blogger Gerald Bracey. A longtime champion of accurate analysis of education research and vocal advocate for public education, Bracey died October 20, 2009. In my article in the November Educational Leadership ("The Big Tests: What Ends...

Things you can do from here:

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Live reporting - Closing

Amrenio - four years ago, there were seven candidates and three write-ins. Two years ago, again seven candidates with no competition. Please step up to take action in the Town to create some choice for the voters.

Continues with thanks and reflections on her time on the committee.

We have laughed yelled, vented, conversed, and collaborated. Thank you!

Kelly - Thank you for working together, it has been a pleasure.

Motion to enter executive session with no intention to return
passed 7-0

Live reporting - Superintendents report

5. Information Matters

Superintendent’s Report
a. Kim Marshall
b. Instructional Support Team
c. Adaptive Leadership
d. Superintendent’s Roundtable
e. ELL Teacher

Sabolinski - I included class size data in your packets.  The wage deferrals, stimulus money helped to maintain reasonable class sizes.

H1N1 - the support of the faculty has been tremendous, we will be ready for the clinics. There is no time line as the supply of the vaccine has been at a trickle. A letter to update the parents will be going out via ConnectED tomorrow.

Mullen - There is a Latin 4/5 position with 37 students
Sabolinski - We had tried to use a long term sub position to fill in, but that person opted not to take this position. It is a difficult position to fill.

School Committee Sub-Committee Reports - none

School Committee Liaison Reports
Met with the Joint PCC, many have become 501(c)3 organizations but not all
They were also looking for building use information

Live reporting - Action Items

4. Action Items
a. I recommend acceptance of a check for $214.28 from the Remington PCC for a 6th grade field trip for the YMCA.  Approved 7-0

b. I recommend approval of the recurring field trip for the 3 middle schools to New York City as detailed.  Tabled for tonight

c. I recommend approval of using $6,000.00 from the Athletic Revolving Account to cover cost of starting a varsity swim team at FHS.  Approved 7-0

d. I recommend acceptance of a check for $1,330.00 from the Parmenter PCC for a Gr. 3 field trip to Plimoth Plantation.  Approved 7-0

e. I recommend acceptance of a check for $94.49 from Target’s Take Charge of Education Program for Remington Middle School.   Approved 7-0

f. I recommend approval of budget transfers as detailed.  Approved 7-0

Armenio - Can you summarize?
Goodman - transfers from the Life Long Learning, $50,000

Live reporting - BMI Q&A

Continuing the conversation around the BMI regulations

Cafasso - Why are we in the middle of this? It says the physician is in the best position for this. It says in the materials that this is a physicians job. For us to step in is kind of a stretch. I think it is very questionable.

Elias - It is just a little more. It is a question of what we can do.

Trahan - The BMI is one more tool to be given to the parent and the physician so they can take action. Given all the increases of diabetes and other diseases that are health related, this is one tool to help address those items early on. The parents do spend time providing additional opportunities with sports, drama and musical opportunities. Now we are talking about alternatives to the health situation.

Armenio - I am still on the fence on this one. I am not sure we as a district should be going this way. I understand we have already be taking the height and weight and sending it home with a tag. I understand where Roberta is coming from. This is an unfunded mandate.

Winslow - I understand the concerns that you have on this issue. I don't think the position of the committee should be, do we decide to do this or not. This is a regulation from the State.

Roy - I take exception to that, this is precisely what we will decide. This may be an emotional issue but the committee will decide and live with the decision.

I don't know where the requirement is coming from to revert to the old system if we don't do the BMI. Can you confirm where the requirement is?

The grant money would gain us $43,000 over 11 years. Implementing this would require more than that amount. This type of regulation is bad government. It belongs in the role of the patient and physician. I don't feel this would be a fair expense for us to justify. The State doesn't have money. It is hypercritical for us to move in this direction.

The legislature had nothing to do with this regulation. If you read that statue, it is not there.

The regulation violates the students rights to privacy. This is not a place where we belong.

Sabolinksi tries to confirm if this section is part of the policy or still on the presentation?
Roy - You'll have time when I am done. I have some more to say. Kids coming on the bus are going to talk to each other, "did you get your fat test done?" That is not what we want. Thank you for what you have done in answering our questions.

Mullen - I don't see how taking height and weight is a violation of the student's privacy.

Roy - How do you handle the kids that will have opted out?
Elias - It won't be any different than how we are handling it today. We take the kids out in small groups from a class, 6-8 at a time. The kids are measured one at time, they don't know the results.

Trahan - Kids get to hear and participate in discussions on MCAS on the bus and that is no different. We are doing this in a way to try and improve their well being.

Mullen - what we came here tonight is with the policy and the changes. Based upon what I have heard, I am not sure where we want to go.

Roy - I made some suggestions that I think should be addressed.
Mullen - Motion for the policy to second reading
Trahan - seconded

Cafasso - I'd like to see the answer to Jeff's question on the regulations. I would need that answer before considering the policy.

Winslow - The assumption is that School Districts will comply with the regulations.

Cafasso - I think we need to better confirm what the burden would be if we don;t go with the BMI.

Rohrbach - Through the two measures that you already take (height and weight) would be calculated by the software. The interpretation is done by the physicians. The schools are in the best position for capturing the data. The physicians are in the best position for the interpretation and action.

Elias - we have always applied for the waiver and received it. The waiver is gone with the new regulations. You won't need to do all the grades, you would only do the grades required.

Rohrbach - Do we know from the DPH what school districts will not comply?

Elias - I did survey surrounding towns, 14 of the town is either doing or will be doing it. No one in the survey is not doing.

Winslow - There is only one other school district that is talking of not complying with this regulation.

Elias - If the waiver goes away, we have to do heights and weights of everyone. Under the new regulation, we only have to do some of the grades, hence less screenings.

Kelly - I am surprised that we have done this for so long. We have provided this to the physicians?

Elias - Yes, with the parents permission.

Armenio - If the kids wear glasses and bring in their physical, do they still get screened.
Elias - depending upon the timing of the physical.

Roy - show of hands for moving to second reading, failed 4-3

Live reporting - BMI Screening

resuming after a fine minute recess

2. Guests/Presentations

c. Growth Assessment Reporting – Patty Elias, RN and Sally Winslow

Since the 1950's we have been taking heights and weights, it has not been reported, it is just put into the file. With the new BMI reporting requirements, those numbers need to be provided to the parents. It was approved in April 2009 and intended to be effective at that time.

It is very clear that the expectation that the school districts will be in compliance. I have also seen some draft advisories coming to the school on how the districts will be implementing this.

While school districts must comply, parents can opt out for their children.

(The presentation has been slow loading. I'll reload it as soon as I can)

BMI is a screening tool, it is not a diagnosis.

Part of a program that over 11 years would yield $43,000. As part of the program requirements, the BMI stats need to be reported or we loose the money.

Currently have a waiver from the DPH. The waiver expires with the new BMI requirements.

If we do the BMI, the nurses would handle approx 8,000 screenings. If we skip the BMI, in order to maintain compliance, the nurses would need to do over 18,000 screenings.

Live reporting - Life Long Learning

2. Guests/Presentations

b. Lifelong Learning Update - Pandora Carlucci

The Class of 1959 recognized at the High School Graduation in June.

Ginormous program 23 boys, 2 girls traveled into and out of the city via the Commuter Rail and Red Line.

90 students in the High School Experience (up from 25 last year). The Class of 2013!

Music initiatives
  • String school
  • Elementary school program
  • Private music lessons
Private Music Lesson Recital by the teachers
The parents, guardians, they already knew we had good music faculty, they found out during the recital that we have "great" musical teachers!

Adult education expanding to meet the needs of the demographics in Franklin. For example, over 180 child care providers in the immediate area. Coordinated a three-part series to help them with their professional development. The first two classes sold out, the third had half capacity. For the time around, this exceeded expectations.

The Class of 1960 will be recognized at this year's graduation. June 4, 2010 - save the date!

Rohrbach - You always surprise us. You are always coming up with something new.

Carlucci - It was good, well received. The only complaint was that they wanted it longer. We had it for two hours and they wanted three. Thanks to the teachers for making it happen,

Trahan - echo compliments, thank you
Cafasso - This is not coming from a budget, this is self funded.

Carlucci - We do give out scholarhsips for most of the programs.

Live reporting - FHS Update

2. Guests/Presentations

a. FHS Update – Peter Light

Viewing a quality movie tour and intro to FHS produced by the school for Panther Pride Night.

updated: 7:32 PM

Peter Lights comments after the video.

The video was all student work, production, script, made contacts with Alumni to return for interviews, etc.

From the PSAT scores, 2 FHS students were semifinalists amongst 5,000 across the country. The program averages 1.5 students per high school and Franklin has 10.

Friday halftime, Senior players recognized 20 faculty for their educational contribution over their high school years.

FHS Discipline stats:
  • Tardiness has decreased 20% this year with an increase in student population.
  • Tardiness to school down 33%.
  • Misbehaving in class down 60%.
Impressive numbers! The full sheet is shown below:

Discover Simple, Private Sharing at

Armenio: I was impressed with the entry to the Panther Pride Night. The one thing that really impressed me were the kids talking to kids. I could not get over the attendance.

Light: We are going to estimate that we had about 750 people over the course of the night. Thanks to Bob Lima for the layout and to the PCC (Barbara Brunelli esp.) for all the help they did to create a great night.

Kelly: the discipline speaks well for the job you are doing. Can the video be posted for others to view regularly.

Light: we don't have a video server but we can try to find a way. (Steve Sherlock can help with this)

Rohrbach: Can you leave the marketing program for us to view? Can you reach out to the 6th grade? They are getting inundated with materials from other schools. This would help them think about and make a decision.

Rohrbach: Why are the numbers down?

Light: we are trying to figure that out. One factor clearly is that there are less passes in the hallway so there is less opportunity for somethings to occur. We have the asst principals in the hallways instead of teachers. The one stat that is up is cutting classes. We are better at catching them because they are in the hallway and looking for them.

Sabolinksi: One thing is you and your administration has made the students more responsible for their own behavior. You have changed that whole atmosphere.

Light: Give credit to the teachers, they are teaching more during the day.

Trahan: you have changed the face of the high school, thank you.

Mullen: I don't like to repeat things that others have said. It is great work there with the administrative team, the teachers, the students. If you would have told me last year of the change that would have occured, I would have said, "yea right." but you have.

Roy: in the eyes of my 8th grader, he really enjoyed the night. The evening flowed, there was something to do.

Light: All the music in the video was produced by the students.

Live reporting - School Committee 10/27/09

Attending: Armenio, Cafasso, Kelly, Mullen, Roy, Rohrbach, Trahan


1. Routine Business

Citizen’s Comments  none

Review of Agenda  none

Minutes: I recommend approval of the minutes from the October 13, 2009 School Committee Meeting.
 motion to approve minutes, passed 7-0

Payment of Bills - Mr. Kelly
Motion to approve, 7-0

Payroll - Ms. Armenio

FHS Student Representatives

Correspondence: None

Sabolinski made the announcement that the Kennedy School was one of 12 schools in the State to be highlighted for high growth according to the new State MCAS reporting released today.

Candidates Night - Photo Slideshow

Here are the photos from the Candidates Night in the Council Chambers on Monday evening, October 26th.

If you click through to Flickr to view the photos, the captions identify the candidates. This slide show format, hides that info.

Candidate Forum Town Council/Board of Health

The collection of live reporting posts from the Franklin Candidates Forum at the Municipal Bldg on Monday evening, Oct 26th can be found here

In the News - candidate views, BMI question

The Milford Daily News recap of the Candidate Forum can be found here

Franklin candidates express views at forum

from The Milford Daily News Homepage RSS


One item scheduled for discussion at the School Committee meeting Tuesday night is covered in the news today:

Franklin schools to weigh BMI question

from The Milford Daily News Homepage RSS

Monday, October 26, 2009

Live reporting - Closing comments

2 minutes for closing comments by each candidate

Mason - essential for citizens to exercise their right to vote. The decisions the Council make will be critical over the next two years.

McGann's statement being read by Larry Benedetto. Public safety, schools and the seniors are our primary concerns Promote increased mixed use development.

Pfeffer - I don't have all the answers, nobody else does either. We are all volunteers trying to make it work under tough circumstances. Seniors in Franklin are making decisions between food and medicine right now.

Vallee - I decided to return to the council because the cuts will have to made and be fair and equitable. Let's not dissect our school system to lose it's accreditation. I am concerned about the seniors and others with low income. We need to be vigilant about finding new revenue streams. I wan to reinforce and re-look at some bylaws.

Whalen - I am very concerned about the projected deficit for next year ($5-7 million). I would like to maintain a level service budget. It will be difficult but should be achievable.

Zollo - The strength of any community is how it treats its most vulnerable. It is not any one group. It can be one or more as the circumstances go. I am discouraged by some of the things said about having somethings off the table. In this crisis, everything must be on the table. Service on the council should help to generate a greater level of pride in Franklin. I urge you all to vote, there needs to be civic participation on Nov 3rd.

Avakian - There has been always a fiscal problem, we didn't know how to spend the money in the times of high grown, now we don't know where to cut. This is our community our town.

Ballenger - I think it obvious we are heading to a fiscal crisis. We will get through this. Look for as many solutions outside the normal. Use of college students for labor; i.e. cheap labor. Ask the citizens of Franklin to donate some time and not just their money. You don't know until you ask.

Jones - A lot of topics have come across tonight, there will be lots of solutions too. It takes a tough individual to put aside biases to deal with the issues. I am that individual. Respect, honor, dedication. Never give up, never give in.

Kelly - Thanks for the opportunity for sharing my opinions in this forum. The challenges are here. My participation on the School Committee and Long Range Planning have prepared me for the challenges. You vote on Nov 3rd will show me how much you know and love the Town.

Powderly - I hope everyone comes away from the Forum with a better idea of what we all bring. The budget crisis is real but we have a lot of strengths, our energy should be spent on addressing the causes of the crisis, like our over reliance on the State Aid. Communication is a two way street. Please vote, please make sure your friends vote.

Live reporting - Council questions continued

Ballenger proposing to use some of the Franklin properties as "long term leases" rather than sell it off. The leases, if possible, would generate some income for the town.

Jones mentions Town Clerk should remain as an elected position, Treasurer/Collector can be appointed. Does not completely agree with the staggered terms as it can be interpreted in many different ways.

Kelly maintaining services will be a large issue, keeping the community safe, and improving the education for the children are the other two.

Powderly the evidence I have seen supports a single tax rate. The Board of Assessor and Town Council need to justify that to the citizens. The issue would be how the long term Franklin family business would bear the increased rate under a split tax. The EMC's might be able to handle it but maintaining the smaller would be a concern.

Pfeffer every year seems to be the worst. We are in a unique position and need to do everything we can do.

Vallee all the towns have water bans. The State limits how much we can distribute. We have enough.

Whalen capital expenditures are necessary, we need to maintain equipment, we always have more requests than we have funds for.

Zollo raises the Financial Planning Committee report that was endorsed by the current council and that the new council should do so as well. It is important to education the citizens on how much we spend and where, schools, police, fire, etc.

Avakian we have approved the bond for the study, we should wait to see what the report comes back with. It will depend upon what our fiscal situation is.

Ballenger the Finance Committee will need to work closely with the council and take Mr Nutting's recommendations under advisement. It will have to be a working partnership.

Jones I don't support an override until we have a viable plan in place to explain to the citizens on what will be spent, where and why. Any cuts on the state side will trickle down to us. It needs to be made as clear as possible for the citizens.

Kelly I would look for a partner who can work with all the organizations in the Town.

Powderly The Franklin Downtown Partnership has done a fabulous job. We are the city that calls itself a Town. We like the small town feel. I'd love to have a more active relationship with the project.

Live reporting - Town Council candidates

Candidates getting similar questions but worded in different ways generating their comment about the same question. Well, it could be that each should have answered the same question. There are not that many real issues for Franklin, or are there?

Live reporting - Town Council candidates

The full slate of candidates, at least those that have shown up this evening.

Single biggest opportunity thus far, regionalization is one way to save some money.

It is encumbent upon the citizens to be aware and become involved of the town issues.

Live reporting - Town Council candidates

Town Council - 9 Positions (For 2 Years)

  • Joseph McGann (absent due to a medical emergency)
  • R. Scott Mason
  • Judith Pond Pfeffer
  • Shannon Zollo
  • Robert Vallee
  • Stephen Whalen
  • Glenn Jones
  • Daniel Ballinger
  • Robert Avakian
  • Matthew Kelly
  • Tina Powderly
  • Glenna Richards - not in attendance
  • Bryce Kuchs - not in attendance due to other work commitments announced last week

Live reporting - Borad of Health 1 minute intro, questions

  • Bruce Hunchard, three children
currently chairman, has been on board for 17 years
long listing of experiences, native from Franklin

  • Koren Kanadanian
currently Director of Emergency Services at Providence College

What is the Board of Health role in health issues?
The current issue is the H1N1 virus, he has set up the process to prepare Franklin

Full time agent for Board of Health in Franklin, how is your role in relationship to the agent.
The agent does the day-to-day inspections and brings information back to the board, the board should have a good relationship

Q - How can you be pre-active instead of re-active?

Q - You have the ability to enact public policy, how would you do that?

There were only four questions prepared, two questions were repeated to a candidate that had not been asked that question before.

Two minutes for a closing statement

I am new to the political arena. I have an open mind to listen to address issues before the board.

My 17 years of experience dealing with local leaders and others in the area can enable a continuity of process.

Live reporting - starting now

Moderator Larry Benedetto

Panel will randomly select a question, no questions from the audience.

Live reporting - Board of Health candidates

The moderator will be Larry Benedetto
Time keeper will be Deb Pellegri

Board of Health - 1 Position (For 4 years)

  • Bruce Hunchard
  • Koren Kanadanian

The candidates are ready. The camerman is here and making final preparations.

Live reporting - Candidate night

A good sign, there is a crowd of people in the room. There are seats available!

Live reporting - Candidate night

Per Deb Pellegri, the order of events tonight will have a panel of four ask questions of the candidates beginning with:.

Board of Health - 1 Position (For 4 years)
  • Bruce Hunchard
  • Koren Kanadanian - new

And followed by

Town Council - 9 Positions (For 2 Years)
  • Joseph McGann
  • R. Scott Mason
  • Judith Pond Pfeffer
  • Shannon Zollo
  • Robert Vallee
  • Stephen Whalen
  • Glenn Jones - new
  • Daniel Ballinger - new
  • Robert Avakian (switch from Board of Assessors)
  • Matthew Kelly (switch from School Committee)
  • Tina Powderly - new
  • Glenna Richards - new

The panelists will be
  • Heather McCarron, Milford Daily News/Gazette
  • Ken Norman, Franklin resident, assessor
  • Jack Lank, President United Regional Chamber of Commerce
  • Pat Samson, Communications Director, Dean College

Live reporting - Franklin candidate debate night

There may be a delay tonight. The cameraman has not yet arrived and a back up person is on the way.

Estimated start time 7:30 PM, or earlier if someone arrives!

A good turnout for the Halloween Festival

The Franklin Police Department held their annual Halloween Festival at Franklin High School on Sunday. With great sunshine, they spread their fun and games outside as well as inside the field house.

Officer Eric Cusson was just sitting.

Franklin: Office Cusson

Then he got wet!

Franklin: Office Cusson in the water!

Chief Steve Williams was dry.

Franklin: the Chief is sitting pretty

Then he got wet! (Hey, wasn't that cheating?)

Franklin: the Chief gets wet!

My what big spiders there are here in Franklin!

Franklin: my what big spiders there are!

Look at all the things to do!

Franklin: Your choice of bouncy things

Everyone (big kids and little) had smiles on their faces.

Franklin: more choices of bouncy things

In the News - MCAS growth model

One of the advantages of participating in regular School Committee, Town Council, and other Franklin business meetings you get to see and hear first hand what is happening. Franklin took part in the State pilot for the MCAS "growth model" that is being introduced tomorrow.

You can view the most recent meeting notes where this was discussed here.

The Milford Daily News covers this item from a Framingham perspective here:

State to unveil new MCAS interpretation model

School Committee - Agenda - 10/27/09

1. Routine Business
Citizen’s Comments
Review of Agenda
Minutes: I recommend approval of the minutes from the October 13, 2009 School Committee Meeting.
Payment of Bills Mr. Kelly
Payroll Ms. Armenio
FHS Student Representatives
Correspondence: None

2. Guests/Presentations
a. FHS Update – Peter Light
b. Lifelong Learning Update - Pandora Carlucci
c. Growth Assessment Reporting – Patty Elias, RN

3. Discussion Only Items

Budget to Actual

Policy – First Reading:
JLCA – Physical Examinations of Students
JLCA – E1 Sample Notification Letter to Faculty & Staff
JLCA – E2 Sample Notification Letter to Parents/Guardians
JLCA – E3 Sample Screening Results Letter to Parents/Guardians

4. Action Items
a. I recommend acceptance of a check for $214.28 from the Remington PCC for a 6th grade field trip for the YMCA.
b. I recommend approval of the recurring field trip for the 3 middle schools to New York City as detailed.
c. I recommend approval of using $6,000.00 from the Athletic Revolving Account to cover cost of starting a varsity swim team at FHS.
d. I recommend acceptance of a check for $1,330.00 from the Parmenter PCC for a Gr. 3 field trip to Plimoth Plantation.
e. I recommend acceptance of a check for $94.49 from Target’s Take Charge of Education Program for Remington Middle School.

5. Information Matters

Superintendent’s Report
a. Kim Marshall
b. Instructional Support Team
c. Adaptive Leadership
d. Superintendent’s Roundtable
e. ELL Teacher

School Committee Sub-Committee Reports
School Committee Liaison Reports

6. New Business
To discuss future business that may be brought before the School Committee.

7. Executive Session
Contractual Negotiations

8. Adjourn

Sunday, October 25, 2009

350 - a big number on a big day

Over 5,000 events took place yesterday in 181 countries to raise awareness on climate change. The Franklin Area Climate Team was busy in some of the local area activities.

Steve Sherlock pinch hit for Ted McIntyre at the Attleboro event and the event coverage can be found here

Other photos and reports will be updated to the Franklin Area Climate Team website as they become available. has a repository of the events worldwide.

In the News - candidate debate Monday

Come out to the Municipal Bldg or tune in via cable and the Internet to see what the candidates say.

Franklin candidates to offer views on Monday

from The Milford Daily News News RSS 

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Reduce your carbon impact - start today

On this day, over four thousand events taking place simultaneously in over 175 nations will be held to raise awareness on climate change. This brief video from New Zealand captures the spirit of the event and it's importance.

What can you do to reduce your carbon intake?

Visit the Franklin Area Climate Team (FACT) for information and links to and other informative sites.

Not sure who to believe on the climate change issue? This video I found the most convincing argument. Take ten minutes to view this and see if you can decide to take action today.

The team will host a Cut the Carbon event on Saturday at 3 p.m. in front of Foxborough Universalist Church at 6 Bird St., Foxborough.

Additional details can be found here

Dean Leadership Institute - Executive Lecture - Health Care

The featured speaker for this 4th Annual Executive Lecture will be Ralph De La Torre, M.D., President and CEO of Caritas Christi Health Care.

Full details on the event including how to register can be found in the attached document:

Discover Simple, Private Sharing at

In the News - candidates worried, haunted field house

Candidates worry about low turnout at forum

from The Milford Daily News Homepage RSS

So far, only six of the 12 candidates running for nine spots on the Town Council have confirmed they will attend the 9 a.m. forum, including incumbents Whalen, Zollo and Councilor Joseph McGann, Finance Committee Vice Chairman Tina Powderly, Board of Assessors member Robert Avakian and newcomer Glenn Jones.
Excuse me, if the candidates can't bother to show interest in the Forum, how can they expect the voters to?


Haunted happenings in Franklin Sunday

from The Milford Daily News Homepage RSS


Friday, October 23, 2009

Reminder: Town Council Candidate Debate and Candidate Forum at Senior Center

In the two most recent off year Town elections (2005 and 2007) only about 3,500 voters cast their ballots in the Franklin High School field house on election day.

In the two most recent override votes, 2007 - 8,500 and 2008 - 7,500 voters cast their ballots.

The election on November 3rd will be as important as an override election. Who we chose will either find the way to come up with a balanced budget maintaining critical services, or will end up cutting critical services.

There are twelve candidates to chose from. Five have chosen to share their thoughts here. (Four Council candidates have been published thus far, the fifth is being reviewed before being published).

Be informed. Ask them questions. Cast your vote on November 3rd.

This election will determine Franklin's future!


 1 - The Town Council Candidates Debate is scheduled for Monday, October 26th at 7:00 PM in the Council Chambers on the 2nd floor of the Municipal Bldg. This event will also be broadcast via the cable channels as well as the Internet webcast. 

2 - There is a Candidate Forum at the Senior Center on Wednesday, October 28th at 9:00 AM. If you would like to attend please call the Senior Center to register (508-520-4945). Note: there are enough people attending, this event will not be canceled.

Freeman Rail Trail Expansion

Sent to you by Steve Sherlock via Google Reader:

via Commonwealth Conversations: Transportation by Klark Jessen on 10/22/09

Catherine Cagle
by Catherine Cagle
Manager of Sustainable Transportation

Today I'm excited to let people know that the Patrick Administration has awarded $500,000 in Transportation Enhancements funding for final design of phase 2A of the Bruce Freeman Rail Trail.

Phase 2A of the Bruce Freeman Rail Trail will extend approximately 4.8 miles from the end of Phase 1 BFRT in Westford, south through Westford, Carlisle and Acton. The towns of Westford, Carlisle and Acton completed the preliminary design to qualify for Transportation Enhancements funding for the final design; once that is completed and approved, Phase 2A will be ready for construction.  

Freeman Rail Trail On August 20, 2009,  residents and community groups celebrated the opening of Phase 1 of the Bruce Freeman Rail Trail (BFRT), a 6.8 mile shared-use path that connects Lowell, Chelmsford and Westford.  As someone who bikes to work and recreationally I am always excited to see paths like this open -- not only because they provide great opportunity for people to excercise but also because they make important connections between communities.   Since the grand opening of Phase 1 use on the path has exploded and led to many rave reviews. We hope that many of these people are excited as we are that Phase 2A design will  moving forward thanks to Transportation Enhancements funding.

 In case you were wondering, the Transportation Enhancements program is a federal program that funds community-based projects with the goal of increasing travel choice and improving the cultural and environmental character of the transportation system. Eligible TE projects fall into 12 categories such as bicycle and pedestrian facilities, streetscape improvements, historic transportation facilities, cultural facilities, and environmental improvements for the transportation system. Transportation Enhancement funding supports important non-traditional and innovative transportation infrastructure projects that might not otherwise obtain funding.  We haven't always done the best job awarded TE funding and we're currently working to improve the program to speed up investments in critical bike and pedestrian projects.  For example, the Patrick Administration recently committed to increasing TE funding from $500,000 to $3.5M and formed a joint task force with highway officials to streamline project delivery and construction timelines.

 You should know that we view pedestrian and bicycling improvements are an especially high priority as the Commonwealth seeks to expand healthy travel options and sustainable transportation.

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Place-kicker chases dream around the world to Dean

Sent to you by Steve Sherlock via Google Reader:

via Boston Globe -- Globe West by Marvin Pave, Globe Correspondent on 10/21/09

FRANKLIN - His 7,000-mile football odyssey began at a National Football League-sponsored kicking clinic in Beijing in 2006. A year later, Long Ding suited up in pads for the first time in the foothills of New Hampshire's White Mountains, at the New Hampton School, and his journey has come nearly full circle at Dean College in Franklin.

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