Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Mark Your Calendar for September 8th

Sent to you by Steve Sherlock via Google Reader:

via Growing In Franklin by Franklin Community Gardens on 8/31/10

For Immediate Release:

Franklin Group Plans For New Community Garden

Would you like to be a part of a new Community Garden in Franklin?

Would you like to grow fresh and healthy food?

We are group of new and seasoned gardeners who would like to start a large community garden in Franklin with separate plots available for individuals, families and community groups as well as a "Giving Garden" for the Franklin Food Pantry. This vision is a continuation of the Healthy Futures Harvest Garden Project, started earlier this spring as free-standing raised garden beds placed throughout our community.

Please join us for a planning session Wednesday evening September 8th at 7:00 p.m. at the Franklin YMCA Bernon Family Branch, 45 Forge Hill Rd. Now is the time to plan for next spring! No experience is necessary.

Come help us grow our garden dream into homegrown food on your plate!

For more info, contact Lauren at 774-235-2737, email Amy at franklincommunitygardens@gmail.com or read more on the new blog at http://www.franklincommunitygardens.org/

August 31, 2010   -  Contacts:

Lauren Marciszyn, Franklin YMCA, 774-235-2737

Amy Acevedo, committee member, 508-520-7018

Event Date is Wednesday September 8, 2010


Things you can do from here:

Franklin, MA: School Committee - Agenda - 8/31/10

The School Committee did get their brief agenda posted on the new 'open meeting' window at the Municipal Bldg.

You can find it amongst the other meeting notices also posted there as you approach the door from the parking lot. On the other side of the window is the Town Clerk offices to complete the orientation of where this is.

Oh, and the agenda item of note is:
Discussion Only Items - Budget

Franklin, MA

American consumers ... a 'eureka' moment!

Director of the New America Foundation Energy Policy Initiative, Lisa Margonelli writes about the global culture and economy of energy in this TEDx talk:

So the thing about water oil spills is that they are very politically galvanizing. I mean, these pictures -- this is from the Santa Barbara spill. You have these pictures of birds. They really influence people. When the Santa Barbara spill happened in 1969, it formed the environmental movement in its modern form. It started Earth Day. It also put in place the National Environmental Policy Act, the Clean Air Act, the Clean Water Act. Everything that we are really stemmed from this period. I think it's important to kind of look at these pictures of the birds and understand what happens to us. He we are normally; we're standing at the gas pump, and we're feeling kind of helpless. We look at these pictures, and we understand, for the first time, our role in this supply chain. We connect the dots in the supply chain. And we have this kind of -- as voters, we have kind of a "eureka!" moment. This is why these moments of these oil spills are so important. But it's also really important that we don't get distracted by the theater or the morals of it. We actually need to go in and work on the roots of the problem.

Note: email subscribers will need to click through to Franklin Matters to view the video.

Franklin, MA

Monday, August 30, 2010

Parmenter School: Student drop off/pick up process

The letter to the Parents of the Parmenter School:


The drop off/pick up process for Parmenter School during the Wachusett St construction:


These were originally posted to the Franklin website:

Note: email subscribers will need to click through to Franklin Matters to view the documents.

Parmenter School: rain gardens

The construction work on the rain gardens at the Parmenter School may get finished before school opens but the road work certainly won't be. Parents in the Parmenter community should be getting special instructions on what to do for drop off and pick up of students when school opens on Sep 1.

There are rain gardens in front of school, in the parking lot and another in the back of school. On a recent run by the school, I stopped to take these photos. The rain gardens are designed to catch rain (storm water) and filter it through several layers of material.

This view shows a cloth covering providing one layer of the filter material. 

As construction makes progress, I'll try and get photos to show the other layers of material.

Franklin, MA

Podcamp Boston 5 – September 25 & 26, 2010

Are you ready for the future?

Are you new to new media like blogging, podcasting, Twitter, Facebook, and wondering where to get started?
Are you a veteran of all things 2.0 and wondering what to learn next to propel you into future success?

PodCamp Boston, now in its 5th year, aims to help you answer these questions and many more. On September 25-26, 2010 at the facility of Microsoft New England Research and Development Center, PodCamp Boston will bring together the best and the brightest - including you - for two days of learning, sharing, and growing your social media skills.

Who should attend PodCamp Boston?
You. It doesn't matter where you are on your social media journey, whether you just starting Tweeting yesterday or whether you're one of the decade-long bloggers. It doesn't matter whether you're the CEO of a Fortune 50, a director of a non-profit, or a guy who likes to knit on the air. What does matter is that you are an expert in something. You have questions AND answers, and PodCamp Boston is the best opportunity to contribute and learn all at once.

What will you learn at PodCamp Boston?
PodCamp is driven by what YOU want to learn and share. Twitter? Sure. Facebook? Of course. Blogging? Definitely. Podcasting? By the bucket. Last year we introduced a way to have more conversations and less presenting with discussions.  This year we want to continue that success and give you the opportunity to learn about the things that would help YOU.

More important, we want you, as you register, to consider leading a session in which you pose a burning question that you absolutely must get the answer to. Maybe you need to know how to figure out the ROI of Facebook. Maybe you need to learn how to make great Internet video. Whatever your burning question is, we want you to ask it at PodCamp.

Take a look at some of the planned topics:
  • Clearing the Hurdles - on pitching social media marketing initiatives 
  • Blogging 100/101/102 
  • Preparing for the future - What tips, techniques, tactics, and ideas can we share for preparing for the future? 
  • Monitoring, Management & the Promise of Social CRM 
  • Twitter, Facebook, Foursquare... It's Taking Over Our Lives! 
  • Social Media for Fundraising and Nonprofit Marketing
Ready to get started?
PodCamp Boston 5 is a mere $50 to participate, but we guarantee you'll get so much more. Not only will you benefit but the net proceeds from the event will be donated to the Greater Boston Food Bank feeding some very hungry kids in the Boston area.  Register today, as we've only got a little over a hundred spots left, and they're going wicked fast.

Register now for PodCamp Boston »
After you've registered, share this with your network and invite them to come to PodCamp Boston with you!

FacebookFacebook TwitterTwitter LinkedInLinkedIn DiggDigg MySpaceMySpace

We'll see you there!

PodCamp Boston 5 is sponsored by the Microsoft NERD Center, our venue sponsor.

Email outreach is sponsored by Blue Sky Factory.

To no longer receive information about PodCamp Boston 5, update your communications preferences here.

One Memorial Drive
Suite 100
Cambridge, MA 02142

Franklin, MA

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Harmony from the Heart

A good night for a good cause.




6:30PM - 11:30PM


Kai Olsson
Peter Paulousky
PT 73
Toby Olsson

$25.00 In Advance 
$30.00 At the door

You can check out the Facebook page here.

Franklin, MA

Clipper Magazine

The Clipper Magazine delivered with your regular postal mail this week is full of good coupons for restaurants and other retail outlets in the area.

Maguro House is featured on the cover:

Inside, there is a page with Clipper Cash coupons for other local restaurants:

Grab your copy before it gets into the recycle pile.

If someone did toss it already, you can find a copy of this issue on line here: http://couponclipper.com/c-tb/www.pageturnpro.com/Clipper-Magazine/17841-015610210/index.html/zip/02038

Franklin, MA

Underground Utilities - survey results

The question was:
The results were

Yes - 22
No - 44

A convincing 2-1 ratio of No to Yes.

The survey had been introduced here

The collection of Downtown Improvement Project posts can be found here:

Franklin, MA

Special - Dinner for Two - $20

The Rome Restaurant is running a Dinner for Two Special for $20. The special is available on Tue-Wed-Thu only but well worth it,

For those who have been to the Rome, you know the food is good. For those who haven't been, this is well worth a visit.

Note: The Rome happens to be one of our favorite places to go. We had stopped in on Friday night and weren't eligible for the special. We paid full price for the meal and enjoyed a great dinner.

Franklin, MA

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Native Plants of Franklin

Hello Franklin! Did you recognize last week's mystery native, perhaps because it grows in the cracks of your driveway, or between the mulch and the curb of the grocery store parking lot?

This plant is called spotted spurge (Euphorbia maculata) and if you grow anything at all out-of-doors in New England, then you have likely plucked out this plant as a weed.

This is what it looks like when spotted spurge is left to its own devices for a few months. It grows absolutely flat against the ground, and has a lovely tinge of purple to its stems and leaves. Spurge is an annual plant that flourishes in hot, dry conditions that kill everything else.

I am a bit baffled as to why every source considers this plant to be just a weed, worthy only of killing, and I am currently leaving it to grow in parts of my garden to see how it does as a groundcover. So far it has been great! It was one of the only plants that didn't seem to suffer during the drought.

Just for fun, here is a closer look. This plant is in bloom. There they are: each flower is barely a millimeter across.

And here is next week's flower. Do you know what it is?

Feel free to post your guesses in the comments section here. Cheers!

Michelle Clay writes about gardening here in Franklin at the Clueless Gardeners Blog.

Franklin, MA

In the News - house fire, Tom Rush

Families lose homes in Franklin fire

from The Milford Daily News News RSS 

FRANKLIN BRIEF: Circle of Friends presents an evening with Tom Rush

Franklin, MA

Friday, August 27, 2010

Farmers Market - today - noon to 6:00 PM

"I can see clearly now, the rain is gone,
I can see all obstacles in my way
Gone are the dark clouds that had me blind
It's gonna be a bright (bright), bright (bright)
Sun-Shiny day."

The Farmers Market will be open on the Town Common today from noon - 6:00 PM.

Franklin, MA

In the News - attempted murder, house fire

Franklin teen charged with attempted murder

from The Milford Daily News News RSS 

House catches fire in Franklin

Franklin, MA

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Attn: Business Owners - Training Grant Money Available!

                                            The United Regional Chamber of Commerce logo 

The Massachusetts Workforce Training Fund Express Program is now accepting applications from organizations with 50 or fewer employees in Massachusetts - including all plants and branches. All applicants must contribute to the Workforce Training Fund via DUA/UI investments.

The mission of the Workforce Training Fund Express Program is to provide organizations with the resources to invest in the Massachusetts workforce and businesses, to improve employee skills, and to maintain the economic strength and viability of the fund.

Training funded by this program should address the priorities of the fund which include projects that will result in job retention, job growth or increased wages and for projects where training would make a difference in the company's productivity, competitiveness, and ability to do business in Massachusetts.

For more information, attend a Workforce Training Grant Information Seminar on Thurs., Sept. 9 from 8:30 a.m. to 10 a.m. at the Chamber's Attleboro office. Please call 508-222-0801 to register.

How to Stop Eating Crap to Stop Feeling Like Crap

This "Howcast" is one of a series on healthy eating.

What do you need?

You Will Need

Portion-size guide
Vegetables and fruit
Whole grains
Healthy drinks
Grass-fed beef (optional)

The Franklin Food Pantry website can be found here: http://franklinfoodpantry.org/

Note: email subscribers will need to click through to Franklin Matters to view the video.

EPA Storm water proposal information

Reminder that the last informational meeting for the proposed storm water permit process will be held today in Milford.
Thursday, August 26, at 10:00 AM at the Physician's Conference Room (First Floor) in the Milford Regional Medical Center, located at 14 Prospect Street, Milford. Free parking is available at the Cancer Center, directly across the street from the Hospital, on Prospect Street

A summary of the storm water permit process can be viewed here:

2010 08 18 Summary of RDA Storm Water General Permit

The presentation used for the Aug 18, 2010 information meeting can be found here:

EPA Information Meeting – August 18, 2010_HANDOUTS

Note: email subscribers will need to click through to view the documents on Franklin Matters.

Franklin, MA

In the News - open positions, trail grants, adult ed

Franklin looks to fill open committee posts

Trails grant workshop offered

Franklin, MA

$3 Million in Additional Education Funds for MetroWest

Senator Karen Spilka (D-Ashland) announced today that six MetroWest towns in her district will receive $3,111,517 in additional education funding thanks to the federal Education Jobs Fund signed into law by President Obama on August 10, 2010.

Under the allocation of funding, which is designed to preserve teaching jobs, Ashland will receive $253,982, Franklin will receive $1,295,418, Holliston will receive $343,005, Hopkinton will receive $315,671, Medway will receive $484,561 and Natick will receive $418,880.

“This additional federal money allows Chapter 70 education aid to be fully funded in every community in the state,” state Senator Spilka. “This announcement, coming on the heels of $250 million in Race to the Top funds, demonstrates how, by working together, we can translate the Commonwealth’s single-minded commitment to education into results.”

The $204 million from the federal Education Jobs Fund to school districts across the Commonwealth brings state support for public schools to its highest level in history. A combination of state and federal dollars totaling $4.07 billion will ensure all school districts receive more state aid - at least $25 per student - than they did last year. The new funding will support an estimated 2,700 teaching positions across the state.

The Education Jobs Fund provides $26 billion nationwide to preserve jobs for teachers and other school-based employees. The Commonwealth's $204 million appropriation will be directly distributed to school districts through the state's education funding formula and combined with state and federal funds to ensure that every school district across the state meets its foundation level budget for the 2010-2011 school year. With this new infusion of federal funding, Chapter 70 will be fully funded without using nearly $60 million in American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) funds available for general government purposes.

This year the state will commit nearly $3.85 billion in Chapter 70 education funds to cities and towns. By combining these state dollars with $204 million in Education Jobs Funds and $20.7 million in existing ARRA funds, the state will meet its commitment to helping every school district reach foundation level spending targets in Fiscal Year 2011.

Yesterday, Massachusetts received $250 million from the federal Race to the Top program. These funds will be used to implement landmark education reforms, including providing new and more immediate opportunities to turn around underperforming schools and close achievement gaps, expand access to successful charter schools and authorize new Innovation Schools to provide greater choice for students and their families.

Franklin, MA

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Disclosure Announcement

Keeping my promise to let you know when things change, I do have an announcement to make. I am honored to have been offered a role on the Board of Directors for the Franklin Food Pantry.

I have accepted this role and look to help the Food Pantry in a couple of ways. One, they have expanded the membership of the Board and are embarking on a strategic plan initiative. I believe my project management skills and my work creating a good customer experience can help in this effort. Two, I will work to help the Food Pantry in their communication efforts. Drawing upon the experiences I have had using and implementing social media tools, I will help to spread the word about the work of the Food Pantry.

What won’t change?
My priorities won’t change with this new role. My number one priority remains my focus on finding appropriate full-time employment. (I forgot this reference to my job search was still here.) My second priority remains contributing to the well being of my immediate and extended family.

My third priority has been giving back to my community via the work I do for Franklin Matters. I see the Food Pantry time requirements fitting within the time I have available. The Food Pantry will allow me to explore what matters in Franklin in an important way. I see this as a natural extension of the outreach efforts I have already made through the Franklin Downtown Partnership and the United Regional Chamber of Commerce.

What may change?
The Food Pantry Board is currently scheduled to meet on the last Tuesday of the month. Depending upon how the calendar works out, this poses a potential conflict with the School Committee meetings. As a result of this conflict, I may be reporting on the second School Committee meeting more from the video archive than the in person/live reporting I have been able to do.

I should note that my role with the Food Pantry Board has changed. In addition to my original responsibilities, I have taken on the role of Chairman of the Board of Directors. (updated 5/2011)
I also serve as Chairman of the Board Development Committee. This last one is temporary (I hope) as we work to expand the Board with folks who share the passion for helping our Franklin neighbors. (updated 10/2011)

My disclosure statement can be found here

and here http://franklinmatters.blogspot.com/2009/04/disclosure-statement-updated-4809.html

The bus is coming. The bus is coming!

Yes, it is that time of the year where the school bus schedule is reviewed. Getting up and out in the morning for school begins next week.

You can view the bus schedule here:

Franklin Public Schools 2010-11 Busroutes

You can also go to the Franklin Public Schools Transportation page to find this info and more:

A quick summary of the changes to the schedule was covered in the School Committee meeting on Tuesday, August 24th.

Note: email subscribers will need to click through to Franklin Matters to view the document.

Attention: business property owners

Do you own business property in Bellingham, Franklin or Milford?
Do it have at least two acres of impervious surface?

What is impervious surface? 
Impervious means that the water can not penetrate to seep through the surface. Concrete or asphalt are common impervious surfaces. Building roof tops also count in the calculation.

If you have not yet attended one of the information sessions on the new regulations the EPA is proposing for pilot in these three communities, you should.

There is one more Thursday, August 26 at 10 AM in the Physician's Conference Room at the Milford Regional Medical Center, located at 14 Prospect St., Milford.

Free parking is available at the Cancer Center, directly across the street from the Hospital, on Prospect Street.

The presentation used at a prior information session can be viewed here:

Additional information on the proposed EPA regulations can be found here:


Note: email subscribers will need to click through to Franklin Matters to view the document.

Franklin, MA

In the News - Y expansion, class size

Franklin YMCA hopes to expand

from The Milford Daily News News RSS 

Franklin administrators bemoan large class sizes

Franklin, MA

Franklin, MA Public Schools: Handbooks

The parent/student/family handbooks for each school in the Franklin Public Schools were approved by the School Committee during the meeting on Tuesday, Aug 24, 2010. You can cruise amongst the individual school webpage to find the handbooks or all of them can be found in one place here:

ECDC FY 11 final Family Handbook 3 (PDF)

Jefferson Parent Handbook 10-11 Final August 2010 (PDF)

Keller Parent and Student Handbook 2010-2011-FINAL (PDF)

JF Kennedy FINAL Handbook 10-11 (PDF)

Oak Street FINAL Family Handbook 2010-2011 (PDF)

Parmenter Family Handbook 2010-2011.FINAL (PDF)

Davis Thayer FINAL Family Handbook 2010-2011 (PDF)

Horace Mann MS FINAL (PDF)

Remington MS_Handbook_FINAL_10-11 (PDF)

Annie Sullivan MS Student Handbook FINAL 2010-2011 (PDF)


FHS Bullying Appendix A FINAL 2010-2011 (PDF)

Note: These handbooks were the 'official' ones approved at the meeting, if an individual handbook is changed after this time, THE official one should be found on the respective Franklin Schools page.

Franklin, MA

School Committee - 08/24/10

The collection of posts from the School Committee meeting on Tuesday, Aug 24, 2010 can be found here:

Franklin, MA

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Live reporting - Closing

5. Information Matters

Superintendent’s Report
a. Parmenter – Wachusett Street Construction
The front access loop is currently impassible, meeting with DPW and Town Administrator on Wednesday

There are 153 new students in the district, there was a line down the hall at the high school today, students who had been at the private high schools are returning

The bus routes are being posted, 
there were three buses eliminated per the budget discussion to save $120,000
Stops were added other bus routes
Some routes will be longer than last year due to the additional stops

  • Remington, bus 29 eliminated, stops added to buses 1, 10, 11, 14
  • Horace Mann, bus 30 eliminated, stops added to buses 15 and 22
  • Parmenter, bus 5 eliminated, stops added to bus 22 and 23
  • Keller, bus 24 eliminated, stops to bus 2 
  • Jefferson, bus 21, stops added to buses 15 and 26

middle school buses are at about 95% capacity
elementary buses are at 75% capacity
bus counts will be taken the third week in Sep
bus counts will be taken more frequently
Late bus will be up and running for the middle and high school students

Pay to ride, currently just about where they were last year about 1591, expecting an increase but only where capacity exists.

Cafasso - can we utilize the existing media to communicate to the PCC's? We need to keep the parents aware. I would like to see in Oct.

Ridership mostly middle/high school for the pay-to-ride

School Committee Sub-Committee Reports 
budget subcommittee met to start discussing FY 2012
if there is any input, like to see things different from last year, let Sue know

policy subcommittee continuing to work through the manual
will be bringing forward

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

Roy - received a book from C Geromini "The Death and Life of the Great American School System"
Trahan - wishing a safe new beginning to the new year to all the students, faculty, etc.

7. Executive Session
Contractual Negotiations

moving to executive session, passed 7-0

8. Adjourn

Franklin, MA

Live reporting - Action items

4. Action Items
a. I recommend acceptance of the Franklin High School’s Handbook as presented at the last meeting.
motion to accept, passed 7-0

b. I recommend acceptance of the District Improvement Plan as presented at the last meeting.
motion to accept, passed 7-0

c. I recommend acceptance of the Horace Mann, Remington and Annie Sullivan Middle School’s School Improvement Plans as presented.
motion to accept, passed 7-0

d. I recommend approval of the Budget Transfers as detailed.
motion to accept, passed 7-0

e. I recommend acceptance of the Middle Schools Handbooks as presented at the last meeting.
motion to accept, passed 7-0

f. I recommend acceptance of the Elementary Schools Handbooks as presented at the last meeting.
motion to accept, passed 7-0

Franklin, MA