school committee 4-11-22
Gardner MA School Committee 4-11-22 Watch the meeting on the City of Gardner YouTube channel or on our School Committee page. CLICK HERE.
Reading Success

Busy Gardner MA School Committee Meeting on April 11, 2022

As is often the case, the School Committee opened the meeting with recognitions. It was noted that out of 10 School districts participating in the Winter Reading Challenge, Gardner students read 1/3 of all the books. Students were awarded gifts. And, older students who took the MCAS Exam found success, with several students winning scholarships for tuition.

Robert Swartz

The Finance sub-committee’s report was made by Robert Swartz who reported that the athletic director was pleased that the athletic field work was underway. The locker contract has been signed. During the next school year, 5 pre k classes are anticipated. The School Committee unanimously voted to raise the rates from $220 to $260 per month for full day, and from $110 to $130 for half day.

Anne Hurst

The Policy sub-committee’s report was made by Anne Hurst. The school district will be changing policy to include a provision that regardless of age, if a child has completed kindergarten in another school district, the child can attend first grade. Previously, an age requirement applied.


Gino Divito reported for the Student Advisory Board. He commented on the success of the music programs and the start of spring sports.

Dr. Goguen

Dr. Goguen had a Covid update and referred to the bi-weekly dashboard of covid cases in the district and noted that the number of positive cases had dropped in the past week.

Gardner Bi-weekly dashboard
Gardner Public Schools Dashboard – CLICK IMAGE for larger view

Dr. Goguen also remarked on Kindergarten registration: As of today 88 students are registered and we try to plan for 200. There are 176 students in current kindergarten.

There was a special education update and member Shannon-Ward Leighton praised the proactive approach to in-class behavior issues, rather than waiting for things to happen.

School Committee Member Comments

Shannon War Leighton

Shannon Ward-Leighton  regarding Diversity event in March, “I walked in and didn’t realize it was going to be as big as it was…it was wonderful though.  The musical was great, all the concerts were great. It was just good to see the kids faces.”

Anne Hurst

Anne Hurst “went to the cultural events and the school play and I saw one of the concerts…it was so much fun…it’s good to see everybody out and doing things….it feels a little more normalcy.  Very proud of the students who won the awards for reading and the students with the scholarships. There are a lot of good things that happen in this district.”

Gino Divito

Gino Divito “ So, I wanna say, parents for the graduating class this year, we are putting on baccalaureate again.  I was told to formally invite everyone here including everyone who’s not here….It will be May31st at Annunciation Parish….NHS is also trying to bring back recycling at the high school.”

Robert Swartz

Robert Swartz, “Like Mrs. Hurst I saw the high school play.  It was great. To see the students do their theatrical skills, it was really wonderful, to see that again.  This Thursday the facilities committee will meet at the Helen Mae Sauter School, hopefully for the last time.”

Rachael Cormier

Rachael Cormier, “I want to recognize all the students that were honored…it’s no coincidence we have so many high school students honored when we have the great reading programs for the younger grades.  It’s starts there.  We can’t expect them to succeed in high school if we’re not starting in kindergarten and first grade.”  

Jennifer Pelavin

Jennifer Pelavin, “…I did attend the Elm Street School play which was adorable.  The kids did such a great job… I’m so glad that everybody is getting to do this all again.”