Bosch Fund Gives Trees for Watertown $25K Grant to Start City’s First Miyawaki Forest

Future site of Watertown’s first Community Miyawaki Forest at Lowell Elementary School. The following announcement was provided by Trees for Watertown:

The Bosch Community Fund has awarded the volunteer group Trees for Watertown a grant of $25,000 toward creation of a special new kind of green space in Watertown: Watertown’s first Miyawaki Forest, to be planted this November on the grounds of the Lowell Elementary School. “TFW’s Forests For Watertown working group (FFW) was just beginning to realize how much funding and support the creation of a Miyawaki Forest would need, when out of the blue came Bosch Community Fund’s invitation to TFW to apply for a grant,” said Libby Shaw, President of TFW. “We are over the moon to receive the Fund’s support for this project!” Bosch Community Fund’s invitation spurred an intense period of further research, site- searching, and collaboration with Watertown!s Department of Community Development and Planning and Department of Public Works, the Watertown Public Schools, and Watertown Community Gardens, as well as outside consultants and members of the wider Watertown community, in order to propose a strong project in time for BCF!s January 31 deadline.

Lowell School Hosting Microforest Community Info Party

The following information was provided by Forests for Watertown:

This fall, everyone is invited to plant a Mini-Forest of baby trees in the Lowell Schoolyard using the “Miyawaki method.” Next spring, Community Garden plots will be built south of the forest. And we’ll plant a pollinator buffer to surround the forest. The Microforest Community Info Party will be on April 30, 6-8 p.m. at the Lowell School Cafeteria, 123 Lowell Ave., Watertown. Hear about the microforest project from Lowell Principal Stacy Phelan, City of Watertown Senior Environmental Planner Laurel Schwab, Trees for Watertown’s Libby Shaw, author Liza Ketchum, Judy Fallows / Marilyn Salvas from Watertown Community Gardens, and more.

J.R. Lowell Elementary School Fifth Graders Write What Happens to the City’s Trash

Photo by Watertown DPWWatertown trash and recycling toters. What Should Watertown Residents Know About Where Our Trash Goes? By David Chachava, Arafat Kabir, Caroline Marsh Zinser, and Milena Rauhut

I’m pretty sure that we have all asked this question once before, where does our trash in Watertown go? Well, we have finally solved that mystery. Here’s a story about two chip bags.

Following False Alarms Watertown Schools to Hold Emergency Drills, Also Seek to Improve Communication System

After a series of false alarms in the security systems at Watertown’s new schools, the district plans to hold drills for the students, and will look for ways to avoid more incidents in the future. The Watertown Public Schools opened two brand new elementary schools, a third underwent a major renovation and expansion, and students at the high school have a new, temporary home. The new buildings also have new technology, including a multi-hazard notification system, said Superintendent Dede Galdston. All four new schools have had false alarms, she said, some due to wiring and other when the panic button was pressed by mistake. “We want to make sure people understand that these happen and that we will do to prevent that from happening again,” Galdston said.

Old School Has New Look, Public Gets First Look Inside Lowell Elementary After Renovation

Parents and students explore the learning commons, a new addition to Lowell Elementary School. (Photo by Charlie Breitrose)

Before the new Lowell Elementary School opened its doors on Tuesday afternoon, the hundreds gathers were entertained by student musicians, including the Lowell chorus who sang the Beatles’ song “Here Comes the Sun.” The song has a fitting line, “It seems like years since it’s been here.” The sun shone on the ceremony held outside Lowell School. The outside looked very similar to the school the students, teachers and staff left a few years ago, but inside it is filled with light, and features an expanded cafeteria, a new library, and a group learning commons with windows stretching two stories skyward.

Lowell School Renovation to be Unveiled at Ribbon Cutting

The Watertown Public Schools invites the public to attend a ribbon cutting ceremony for the latest school construction project to be completed: Lowell School. There will be an opportunity to look around the renovated and expanded school. School officials sent out the following information:

Please join us for a ribbon cutting ceremony for the newly renovated J.R. Lowell Elementary School on Tuesday, October 3, 2023. The ceremony will take place at the Lowell Avenue entrance at 4:00pm. After the ceremony, the Watertown Community is also invited to walk through the renovated building.

Enrollment Up at All Levels in Watertown Schools, Especially at the High School

Enrollment is up at Watertown High School, despite moving into the temporary location at PFC Ricard Moxley Field. (Courtesy by City of Watertown)

Watertown’s schools are growing at all levels, and some classes at two elementary schools are near or at capacity, Superintendent Dede Galdston told the School Committee. The biggest growth, however, is at the secondary level. Typically, School officials wait until September to provide the first enrollment report to the School Committee, Galdston said, but she wanted to inform members before school started incase they receive questions about it. “Our enrollment is up,” Galdston said.

Our History: The Origins of the Name Watertown’s Elementary Schools

Dr. Alfred Hosmer (1832-1891) and Dr. Hiram Hosmer (1798-1862) Photographs courtesy of the Watertown Free Public Library

The following story is part of a series on local history provided by the Historical Society of Watertown. It was written by Historical Society of Watertown board member Bob Bloomberg. Bob is also on the board of the Watertown Historic District Commission. He is a genealogist (his contact information is on our website) and has written several book reviews and newspaper articles. He wrote this article for our July 2020 newsletter “The Town Crier.”

Pop quiz: What do Hiram and Alfred Hosmer, P. Sarsfield Cunniff, and James Russell Lowell have in common?