Superintendent Gets Good Grades in Annual Review

Charlie BreitroseWatertown Superintendent of Schools Dede Galdston. Watertown Superintendent Dede Galdston received good marks on her annual performance evaluation from the School Committee. The School Committee discussed their job review for the leader of the Watertown Public Schools on Monday night. On the overall performance, Galdston received two “exemplary” evaluations (the top mark) and five “proficient” (second highest), said School Committee Chair Kendra Foley. “This is a very positive evaluation.

Watertown Schools Seeking Crossing Guards for School Year

The City of Watertown released the following job description:

The City of Watertown seeks to hire School Crossing Guards to work under the supervision of theWatertown Police Department. Responsibilities include monitoring vehicle and pedestrian traffic at assigned crossings to assist school children crossing the streets, while providing for the orderly movement of traffic. Must be able to communicate effectively with school children, parents, and drivers, ensure that children cross the street properly and safely. Must be able to stand for the entire shift and to tolerate exposure to all types of weather conditions, maintain a high level of awareness, be reliable and can use judgement and work independently. Required Qualifications

High School diploma (or GED).

Council Approves $4 Million to Help Cover Rising Cost of High School Project

Ai3 ArchitectsAn illustration of what the outside of the new Watertown High School will look like. The cost of constructing the new Watertown High School has risen since the budget was sent to state officials, and one of the steps to cover the gap of $14.47 million was taken Tuesday when the City Council approved transferring $4.175 million

City Council President Mark Sideris, who chairs the School Building Committee, said that the rising cost of construction was a major part of the increase in the project budget over the $138.6 million budget approved by the Massachusetts School Building Authority. “We on the School Building Committee have been working since 2018 on school projects. Our first set of projects went very well, and are still on, or slightly under, budget and came in earlier than expected,” Sideris said. “When we got to the high school COVID happened.

Community Spirit Awards Return, Watertown Youth Coalition Holds In-Person Celebration

Watertown Youth CoalitionThe Watertown Youth Peer Leaders pose with the staff from the Watertown Youth Coalition after the peer leaders received their awards at the 2022 Community Spirit Awards. For the first time since 2019, on June 8, the Watertown Youth Coalition along with Wayside Youth and Family Support Network hosted their yearly Community Spirit Awards ceremony and reception at Arsenal Park in Watertown. The event was put together by Watertown Youth Coalition (WYC) Peer Leadership Advisor, Zhane Goode, and WYC Program coordinator Stephanie Sunderland, who had to miss the ceremony due to unforeseen circumstances. Zhane, who has been working with all of the honored students for a few years, was very happy to finally be able to hold the awards in person and noted that the students were especially excited to get to celebrate together with their friends and family. For Zhane herself, she began her work at the WYC during the pandemic, so she said it was really nice to see everyone all together as a community. 

The event has not been held in recent years due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and was attended by many members of the community, including the honorees, those who nominated them for spirit awards, and families, friends, and other Watertown citizens who came to celebrate their achievements.

Watertown Exploring Variety of Options for Vocational Education

The group exploring vocational and technical education options for Watertown students has found a variety of possibilities, but the ad hoc committee has not come up with recommendations yet. Watertown could look to join a vocational high school district, join into an agreement with another community that has a vocational program, expand the number of offerings at WHS, or use a combination of those options, said School Committee member David Stokes, who chairs the Vocational Technical Ad Hoc Committee. “It seems like we haven’t gotten very far, but we have done a whole lot,” Stokes said. “We are farther along than a lot of people think, because we haven’t produced anything yet, but it is coming shortly.” The committee was formed after students seeking vocational or technical education programs struggled to get into Minuteman High School in Lexington.

No Tuition Increase for Coming Year at MassBay Community College

The following information was provided by MassBay Community College:

MassBay Community College Board of Trustees approved a budget last week that will not require students to pay an increase in fees or tuition for the upcoming 2022-23 academic year. This is the third consecutive year MassBay has avoided charging students more for fees and tuition. “At MassBay we believe the access to higher education is a matter of social justice,” said MassBay President David Podell. “We remain accessible by keeping the cost to attend as low as possible for students, by offering scholarships and financial aid counseling, and by ensuring the investment students make in us pays off in the end with well-paying, rewarding careers. Kudos to our financial management team for enabling us once again to keep tuition and fees at current levels.”

MassBay is the lowest-cost college option in MetroWest.