Tuesday, November 29, 2016

You Saved the Best for Last


   November 29, 2016

You Saved the Best for Last

Dear Friends,
Our wish is that you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday with your loved ones, and that you enjoyed the hustle and bustle of Black Friday, Small Business Saturday and Cyber Monday in good cheer and with a festive spirit. 

With all of the gifts checked off on your list, you saved the best for last. Today, Giving Tuesday, you can give a gift to help a neighbor you may never have met.
We ask that you consider making a donation for one of the 322 children right here in your community who wouldn't have enough to eat without the Franklin Food Pantry.

We ask that you share this email with your friends and family so that we can meet our goal of 322 gifts today.

For the donations already made and for those still to come,


 Donate to Food Pantry
 Donate to Food Pantry

Additional leadership gift and corporate sponsor opportunities available,
for details please email Erin Lynch erin@franklinfoodpantry.org

Franklin Food Pantry       www.franklinfoodpantry.org 

Our facility is generously donated by Rockland Trust.
We are located at 43 West Central Street, Franklin MA,
on Route 140 in the Rockland Trust parking lot, 
across the street from the fire station.
Franklin Food Pantry, 43 West Central Street, PO Box 116, Franklin, MA 02038

Sent by erin@franklinfoodpantry.org in collaboration with
Constant Contact

A Ballet for The Ages: Growing Up With The Nutcracker

The Nutcracker is a holiday season tradition for countless young dancers whose annual turn in the Christmas fantasy marks a celebrated rite of passage. The chance to take part in the enchanting production, full of pageantry and splendor, engages the starry-eyed child dancer, while more advanced ballerinas relish opportunities to be cast in progressively more challenging roles.

Franklin’s Shaina McGillis, 18, made her Nutcracker debut with the Franklin Performing Arts Company (FPAC) in 2004 at the age of six. A polichinelle coming out from Mother Ginger’s giant hoop skirt, it was her first time performing on stage. Now a senior at Franklin High School and a veteran of 12 FPAC Nutcrackers, Shaina dances her 13th consecutive year in FPAC’s production this season. She has played most of the ballet’s roles, including little mouse, party girl, little Chinese, marzipan, Clara, Chinese demi-soloist, Chinese soloist, kissy doll, soldier doll, Spanish and Arabian corp, Russian, rose flower, Mouse Queen, candy cane soloist, Nutcracker, Spanish soloist, and Dew Drop. 

Franklin's Shaina McGillis is pictured, center, in this 2015 production photo, dancing the role of Dew Drop
Franklin's Shaina McGillis is pictured, center, in this 2015 production photo, dancing the role of Dew Drop

“Particularly for students who start dancing The Nutcracker at younger ages, the ballet becomes tradition, a treasured part of their holiday season,” says Director/Choreographer Cheryl Madeux, who formerly danced with the Joffrey Ballet, Hartford Ballet and American Ballet Theatre companies. “As dancers continue to train year after year, they develop the maturity, physically and emotionally, to take on more demanding and age-appropriate roles.”

Shaina’s parts in the ballet’s magical snow scene reflect her progression, dancing first as a snow maiden, then as a snowflake and snow princess, and this year as Snow Queen. “The snow scene is exciting,” she says, “and very cool with the live orchestra. There’s a lot going on, and there are many dancers on stage. The snow can be slippery under point shoes. It’s well rehearsed, but you have to be very aware.”

Cast in multiple roles, Shaina will also dance the parts of Spanish soloist and Dew Drop this season. “It’s great to have the opportunity to grow into it,” she says of Dew Drop and the chance to reprise the coveted role. “It’s more artistically challenging, and it’s tiring physically. The stamina is hard.”

Shaina will be joined on stage by her dad, Jim McGillis, who will perform the role of Clara’s father, Herr Silberhaus. This is Jim’s sixth consecutive year as Party Parent in the festive Christmas Eve scene that opens the ballet’s first act. Jim, who used to coach Shaina in soccer, stepped into his Nutcracker role to share a different experience with his daughter when she stopped playing soccer to focus on her ballet training.

“It’s a real team effort,” says Shaina’s mom, Anne McGillis, noting how the sport and ballet production share a spirit of collaboration. “Jim appreciates the athleticism, too, and the way in which the dancers make what is so physically challenging look so effortless.”

“Everyone has to work together,” she continues, “and Ms. Madeux promotes such a positive attitude among the dancers. They really support each other.”

Shaina adds, “Ms. Madeux expects a lot from us, and that makes us work harder.”

A student in the Ballet Conservatory program at the Franklin School for the Performing Arts (FSPA), where Ms. Madeux is Ballet Director, Shaina also studies jazz, tap and contemporary dance at FSPA. Her training has included summer intensive programs at the Joffrey Ballet in San Francisco, Complexions Contemporary Ballet in New York City, and Ballet West Academy in Salt Lake City. Shaina plans to continue dancing in college and aspires to dance professionally.

Reflecting on her last season in FPAC’s The Nutcracker, she says, “It will be bittersweet. It went by so fast.”

FPAC presents The Nutcracker on Saturday, December 3 at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday, December 4 at 2 p.m. at the Franklin High School auditorium, 218 Oak Street. With special guest artists, world-class musicians and more than 100 area dancers, the fairytale ballet features Festival Ballet Providence company dancers Vilia Putrius and Mindaugas Bauzys in the roles of the Sugar Plum Fairy and her Cavalier and a professional orchestra under the direction of maestro Peter Cokkinias.

“There’s so much excitement around it – the music, the costumes, the choreography – as it all comes together,” Shaina says of the production.

For tickets ($30-$34) and more information, visit www.FPAConline.com or call (508) 528-3370. Rockland Trust Charitable Foundation is FPAC’s 2016 Holiday Sponsor.

Franklin Library: Author Susan Kapatoes - Dec 3 - 2:00 PM

The Franklin Public Library will host author Susan Kapatoes on Saturday, Dec 3 at 2:00 PM.

"Greetings to all :) 
Throughout my life, I have had the unexpected opportunity to experience certain events that can be described as divine intervention. In a beneficial manner, I have been allowed to feel the omnipresent energy that is moving through our amazing universe and permeating our everyday lives. I felt compelled to write about these graceful times in order to help people expand their consciousness and connect to their own inner power in a positive way.

As a result of my life experiences, I enjoy writing books with a spiritual and uplifting theme. In regards to my educational background, I hold a bachelor of science (B.S.) degree in Nutrition and a masters degree in Healthcare Administration (M.H.A.). As a complement to my formal learning, I have also studied holistic healing modalities which help to promote balance and optimal well-being in a person's life."


Franklin Library: Author Susan Kapatoes - Dec 3 - 2:00 PM
Franklin Library: Author Susan Kapatoes - Dec 3 - 2:00 PM
This was shared from the Franklin Library webpage

"It's not really something we have to worry about until 2018"

From the Milford Daily News, articles of interest for Franklin:

"After a state vote in favor of legalizing recreational marijuana, a town committee is scheduled to discuss the potential impacts at a meeting this week. 
The matter is one of the items on the agenda for the Town Council's economic development subcommittee meeting, which will take place at 5:30 p.m. Wednesday in the Franklin Municipal Building's council chambers. 
Subcommittee Chairman Andrew Bissanti said the town had, in its zoning bylaws, already considered recreational marijuana. Those bylaws, he said, consign such facilities to industrial parks."

Continue reading the article online (subscription may be required)

The full agenda for the Economic Development Committee (EDC) is

The EDC meeting agenda 
1. Plastic Bag Ban Legislation 2. Recreational Marijuana Zoning 

A full copy of the agenda can be found here

Additional info on the plastic bag bylaw can be found here

cover page of presentation to Town Council on reducing plastic bags for retail
cover page of presentation to Town Council on reducing plastic bags for retail

It's #GivingTuesday!


Celebrate the spirit of the holidays and show your support for THE BLACK BOX and the venue's exceptional live music and theatrical programming with a Giving Tuesday donation today! 

We gratefully appreciate gifts of any amount, and will enter your name in a raffle drawing for a pair of tickets to the Franklin Performing Arts Company's holiday musical Humbug! (performances on 12/17 & 12/18) as a token of our thanks for your Giving Tuesday contribution. 

We are also pleased to offer two tickets to any Cabaret, Classical, Local Artist or Jazz music series event at THE BLACK BOX this 2016-2017 season for anyone who donates $100 or more. Your gift certificate, to be redeemed for the music concert of your choice, will come packaged with THE BLACK BOX calendar of events and wrapped for holiday gift-giving, making it a great time to give and receive!

  Thank you for supporting THE BLACK BOX on #GivingTuesday!


Franklin Performing Arts Company uses Vendini for ticketing, marketing, and box office management.

Franklin Performing Arts Company - PO Box 16, Franklin, MA, 02038, (508) 528-8668
Vendini, Inc. - 660 Market Street, San Francisco, CA, 94104, 1 (800) 901-7173

Monday, November 28, 2016

Capital Budget Planning Committee - Agenda - Nov 30 - 7:00 PM

1. Capital Budget Requests
A. Turf Fields design and development funds 
B. Google Doc’s 
C. E-Permitting Software for the Town Clerk’s Office


the crumb rubber fill will be one of the considerations for the turf field replacements
the crumb rubber fill will be one of the considerations for the turf field replacements

The meeting is scheduled for the Council Chambers and will follow the Economic Development Committee scheduled for the same room to begin at 5:30 PM.

Related posts on the crumb rubber turf issue

  • Legislative request to US Consumer Product Safety Commission


  • Medway took action to move away from crumb rubber


  • NBC covers the crumb rubber safety issue


  • New England Center for Investigative Reporting gets into it


  • What do Franklin's turf fields look like? photos from a walk around Franklin in February


"evidence of student learning must be included in the body of evidence evaluators use to determine educator ratings"

"The state’s education commissioner, aiming to end a long-brewing controversy, is proposing to scrap a rule requiring school systems to develop individual ratings for teachers and administrators based solely on student test scores. 
“I heard loud and clear from teacher unions and administrators that having a separate rating has more downsides then upsides,” Mitchell Chester, commissioner of elementary and secondary education, said in an interview. 
His proposal, however, would not entirely do away with the use of student test scores in evaluating teachers and administrators, prompting mixed reaction to the proposal Tuesday. 
Instead, it would require school systems to fold the scores into a separate system of judging educator performance: the annual job review, a process that has been based largely on observations, and a review of other evidence, such as lesson plans."

Continue reading the article online (subscription may be required)

The full agenda for the Massachusetts Board of Elementary and Secondary Education meeting scheduled for Tuesday, Nov 29, 2016 can be found here

The Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education
The Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education

"Importantly, the proposed amendments eliminate the separate student impact rating, but preserve a focus on student learning in the evaluation framework. This approach addresses the concerns about a separate student impact rating while retaining evidence of student learning based on multiple measures, including common assessments and statewide student growth measures, as a component of the educator's summative performance rating."

Summary of Proposed Amendments

The proposed regulatory amendments include the following:

  • Eliminating the separate student impact rating of high, moderate, or low, which was to be reported to the Department at the educator level.
  • Retaining the 5-step cycle, which culminates in a summative performance rating based on multiple categories of evidence and the professional judgment of the evaluator. (See the attached Quick Reference Guide for more information about the evaluation process.)
  • Establishing a "student learning indicator" under Standard II: Teaching All Students (for teachers) and under Standard I: Instructional Leadership (for administrators). Standards describe the broad categories of knowledge, skills and performance of effective practice, and indicators describe specific knowledge, skills, and performance for each standard. By including a student learning indicator, impact on student learning is a component of the rating for the Standard. The rating for the Standard, in turn, is a component of the Summative Performance Rating. The student learning indicator does not result in a separate stand-alone rating.
  • Providing additional information about the types of measures that can be used as evidence of educator impact on student learning, including: a definition of common assessments, establishing the use of common assessments and statewide growth measures in the evaluation process as optional for educators who are not responsible for direct instruction, and clarity that other evidence of student learning beyond common assessments and statewide growth measures may be considered.
  • Adding a new definition of "expected impact" on student learning to guide evaluators and educators in understanding the role of professional judgment in looking across multiple measures to understand an educator's impact on student learning.

In addition, the proposed amendments also include technical changes unrelated to the student impact rating, such as removing provisions describing timelines that have expired.


FHS Boys Hockey Boosters and Incontro Restaurant team up for a great discount offer

The FHS Boys Hockey Boosters will be selling these cards for the whole month of December and into January at various times at the rink. We will post on Facebook and Twitter the times we will be at the rink. Anyone can also contact the FHS email listed on the flyer.


FHS Boys Hockey Boosters and Incontro Restaurant team up for a great discount offer.


Norfolk County Register of Deeds Announces REBA Meeting - Dec 6

Norfolk County Register of Deeds William O'Donnell Announces
 REBA Meeting at the Norfolk County Registry of Deeds  
Norfolk County Register of Deeds William P. O'Donnell
Real Estate Bar Association for MA ~ REBA
Meeting at the Norfolk County Registry of Deeds
Tuesday, December 6th at 8:30am
Register O'Donnell Announces REBA Meeting at the
Norfolk County Registry of Deeds

Norfolk County Register of Deeds William P. O'Donnell, in conjunction with the Real Estate Bar Association for Massachusetts (REBA), announces REBA's Residential Conveyancing Section (RCS) will hold a practice development and educational breakfast meeting for REBA members and their guests at 8:30AM on Tuesday, Dec 6th at the historic Norfolk County Registry of Deeds building, 649 High Street, Dedham, MA.
The meeting will take place in the Registry's Hannon Annex, named after Barry T. Hannon, Norfolk County Register of Deeds from 1970-2001. Featuring an original vault, computer terminals for the public's use, over 14,000 books and conference room sized tables with seating, the Hannon Annex is one of many rooms at the Registry Building named after a former Norfolk County Register and dedicated for use of the public and members of the real estate bar for the purpose of conducting real estate closings and transactions.
The meeting, sponsored by Herbert H. Landy Insurance Agency and Belmont Savings Bank, will include an overview of issues important to REBA along with an update on legislation before the Massachusetts Legislature affecting real estate conveyancing. In addition, a discussion on solar panels and how they affect properties, homeownership, refinances, and more will also take place.
Register O'Donnell noted, "I am delighted to provide Registry facilities to REBA for the holding of their meeting. As Register, it is important to have a good working relationship with key stakeholders including the real estate conveyancing community. REBA does an outstanding job promoting best practices which helps not only real estate attorneys and their clients but Registry customers and employees."
REBA RCS Co-Chair Attorney Michelle T. Simons notes that all REBA members and their guests are welcome, regardless of their practice concentration. The program is free of charge. Interested participants are requested to RSVP by Dec 2nd to Nicole Cohen at cohen@reba.net.
To learn more about these and other Registry of Deeds events and initiatives, like us at facebook.com/NorfolkDeeds or follow us on twitter.com/NorfolkDeeds and/or Instagram.com/NorfolkDeeds.
The Norfolk County Registry of Deeds, located at 649 High Street, Dedham is the principal office for real property in Norfolk County. The Registry is a resource for homeowners, title examiners, mortgage lenders, municipalities and others with a need for secure, accurate, accessible land record information. Residents in need of assistance can contact the Registry of Deeds Customer Service Center via telephone at (781) 461-6101, or on the web at www.norfolkdeeds.org.
Norfolk County Registry of Deeds, 649 High Street, Dedham, MA 02026-1831

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Constant Contact

Franklin Library: Holiday Party - Dec 2

The Franklin Public Library will host a holiday party on Friday, Dec from 2:00  to 4:00 PM. Games, goodies, crafts, and a drawing for a "Bundle of Books".

Franklin Library: Holiday Party - Dec 2
Franklin Library: Holiday Party - Dec 2

This was shared from the Franklin Library webpage

In the News: Holiday Stroll set for Thursday; Food Elves kick off new drive

From the Milford Daily News, articles of interest for Franklin:

"With Thanksgiving over, the Franklin Downtown Partnership is preparing to kick off the holiday season with its much-anticipated Holiday Stroll next week. 
The event, set for Thursday, Dec. 1, 4:15-7 p.m., will include a tree lighting, carols and other holiday festivities. 
The first celebration of the season will take place in the town's newly upgraded downtown business district, with Main Street closed to traffic for the duration to give revelers a chance for a leisurely stroll among the attractions on Main, West Central, East Central and Summer streets."

Continue reading the article online (subscription may be required)

new seasonal banners up on the street lights in downtown Franklin
new seasonal banners up on the street lights in downtown Franklin

"After their "12 Days of Donating" drive last year garnered more than four tons of food, the Franklin "Food Elves" are gearing up for another run this December. 
Though the group hopes to once again near or beat that total, it's monetary donations that will be the focus of this year's effort. 
The drive, now in its 11th year, is run by local students - the "Food Elves" - to benefit the Franklin Food Pantry."

Continue reading the article online (subscription may be required)

Sunday, November 27, 2016

Economic Development Committee to take up plastic bag bylaw and recreational marijuana zoning

From the Milford Daily News, articles of interest for Franklin:

"The town will again be taking up the matter of a ban on plastic shopping bags later this month. 
Town Council member Andrew Bissanti has announced that the economic development subcommittee, of which he is chairman, has scheduled a meeting for Wednesday, Nov. 30 to resume discussion on the matter. 
The meeting - set to take place at 5:30 p.m. in the council chambers of the town's municipal building - will consider the ban and feedback from local merchants."
Continue reading the article online (subscription may be required)

cover page of presentation to Town Council on reducing plastic bags for retail
cover page of presentation to Town Council on reducing plastic bags for retail

  • The presentation made to the Town Council


  • The proposed bylaw text


  • Recap of efforts in MA to reduce use of plastic bags for retail


The EDC meeting agenda

1. Plastic Bag Ban Legislation 
2. Recreational Marijuana Zoning 

A full copy of the agenda can be found here

“12 Days of Donating” campaign to benefit the Franklin Food Pantry

The Franklin Food Elves and the Downtown Partnership will launch the “12 Days of Donating” campaign to benefit the Franklin Food Pantry on December 1. This year’s collection drive marks 11 years that the Food Elves have helped neighbors in need during the holiday season.

The Food Elves were created in 2006 when Melissa and Cameron Piana began collecting donations in a wagon in their neighborhood. This tradition continues with Ellie Teixeira as lead Food Elf who took over this legacy last year from Cameron. More than 120 school-aged elves and 12 local businesses raised more than four tons (8,001 pounds) of goods and $11,000 for the Food Pantry. This year the Elves are asking for more monetary gifts because it gives the Pantry greater flexibility to meet community need.

“We are looking forward to building on the success the Food Elves have had, and this year we hope to raise more money. The Food Pantry can buy food at a much lower price than others can. And, they can buy exactly what they need for their clients,” says Ellie Teixeira, lead Food Elf.

left to right, are Erin Lynch, Pantry executive director, and Lead Food Elves Ellie Teixeira and Julia Buccella. Photo courtesy of Bob Teixeira
left to right, are Erin Lynch, Food Pantry executive director, and Lead Food Elves Ellie Teixeira
and Julia Buccella. (Photo courtesy of Bob Teixeira)

The Franklin Food Elves is a charitable community service group comprised of more than 120 dedicated elementary, middle and high school students. This will be the sixth year the elves have partnered with local businesses to create one of the Franklin Food Pantry’s most successful collection drives. Each year the 12 Days campaign brings in food and cash to help sustain the pantry’s 504 client families through the winter.

In December the Food Elves will notify their neighbors about collection dates, instructions and items needed. The elves make it easy to donate; residents simply place bags of goods at their mailboxes on designated dates, and the elves pick up and deliver the goods to the Pantry. If residents prefer to make a monetary donation, Food Elves captains will also give instructions on how funds will be handled in their neighborhood.

“The Pantry has some lean months after the holidays, when end-of-year giving subsides and food drives happen less frequently,” says Erin Lynch, executive director of the Franklin Food Pantry.

“We count on the Food Elves to bring in the donations that help carry us through the winter months, a time when families who are struggling to put food on their tables face even harder times because of higher energy costs. We are so grateful for the hard work of the Food Elves and the gifts they bring to us,” she adds.

Lynch is hoping that more people give monetary donations. “We can purchase food from the Greater Boston Food Bank at a fraction of what it costs in the grocery store. We are able to supplement food donations with more nutritious and fresh food, such as fruits, vegetables, dairy products and meats.”

In case there’s no Food Elf in your neighborhood, it is still easy and convenient to donate. Participating Franklin Downtown Partnership member businesses all across town will have red collection bins at their locations. If the Food Elves meet their goal of collecting more than 1,200 pounds of goods, each business has pledged to donate at least $200 to the 12 Days of Donating drive. A list of businesses hosting red bins will be posted on the Food Elves Facebook page and the FDP website and Facebook page.

A red collection bin will also be set up at the Holiday Stroll tree lighting ceremony at Dean College on Thursday, December 1, at 4 p.m. Event goers can drop off donations there, or at the Food Pantry, 43 W. Central St. Please designate donations made at the Pantry as Food Elves.

The Food Pantry’s greatest needs currently are personal care items such as deodorant, shampoo, liquid hand soap, toilet paper and feminine products. To make an online donation in honor of the Food Elves, visit the Pantry’s website, franklinfoodpantry.org. Please mention Food Elves in the donation form’s acknowledgement box. For more information call 508-528-3115.

Any student interested in becoming a Food Elf should contact Ellie Teixeira at franklinfoodelves@yahoo.com.

To learn more about the Franklin Food Elves and the “12 Days of Donating” campaign, please contact the Food Elves at franklinfoodelves@yahoo.com or visit their Facebook page. Information can also be found at franklindowntownpartnership.org and on the FDP’s Facebook page.

Franklin Newcomers and Friends: Annual Yankee Swap Party - Dec 14

The Franklin Newcomers and Friends Club welcomes you to our next monthly meeting. On Wednesday, December 14th we are having our Annual Yankee Swap Party. Even if this is your first time joining us, you're welcome to participate, or just come and socialize. If you choose to participate in the swap, bring a new and wrapped gift valued between $15 and $20.

Additionally, we have an optional cookie swap at this event and we collect donations for the Santa Foundation. If you want more information about participating, go to www.meetup.com/Franklin-Newcomers-Friends/ and use the link on the left hand side of the page to contact us.

We invite any resident of Franklin, or a surrounding town that doesn't have a Newcomers Club, to join us at "3" Restaurant, 461 West Central Street, Franklin. Complimentary appetizers and beverages are provided and a cash bar is available. We meet upstairs at 7:30 pm on the 2nd Wednesday of the month. We run September through May but hold many other casual events to stay connected throughout the year.

Franklin Newcomers and Friends Club
Franklin Newcomers and Friends Club

MassBudget: The Effectiveness and Cost of Expanding Vocational Education

MassBudget  Information.
 Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center  Democracy.

Report Explores the Effectiveness and Costs of Expanding Access to Vocational Education in Massachusetts 

With demand increasing at many vocational programs, MassBudget's new report, Skills for Our Future: Vocational Education in Massachusetts examines the effectiveness of different models of high school vocational programs and the costs of providing access for students currently on waiting lists.

Massachusetts has seen an increase in career, vocational, and technical education program enrollment since 2005, from 14 percent of the student population to 17 percent today. Research has shown that participants in certain programs had 11 percent higher annual earnings on average than comparable students after they participated in this training.

The report outlines three models currently in place -- vocational programs within traditional high schools, regional vocational schools, and in-district vocational schools -- and studies showing the elements necessary for success with each model.

There are currently 3,200 students on waitlists for vocational education programs and unmet demand for these programs is especially pronounced in the state's Gateway Cities.

Skills for Our Future: Vocational Education in Massachusetts

To fulfill the unmet demand for vocational programs across the state, MassBudget estimates a cost of at least $27 million annually, approximately $5,000 per pupil in ongoing operating costs. This figure does not include capital costs for building new schools or the significant transition costs that are often involved as students move between programs. New programs in fields such as manufacturing, moreover, require significant updating of facilities to be successful.
The link to the new report is here (LINK). 

The Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center (MassBudget) produces policy research, analysis, and data-driven recommendations focused on improving the lives of low- and middle-income children and adults, strengthening our state's economy, and enhancing the quality of life in Massachusetts.


BOSTON, MA 02108
Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center, 15 Court Square, Suite 700, Boston, MA 02108

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