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4 - February 17, 2012 | Hudson - Litchfield News

The Word Around Town... Letters to our Editor

Mal’s Pal’s Hosting a Night of Fun for a Cause

Upon finishing the 9/11 Memorial project located at

Benson Park in Hudson, I was recruited by the “Mal’s Pals” Organization seeking my support and assistance with raising money to complete their project at Benson Park.

Tey are in dire need to raise $25,000 in order to build an amphitheater to be located next to the pond at Benson Park in Hudson in memory of Mallory Gray. Te amphitheater will afford us an opportunity to hold live music festivals for all to enjoy free of charge on weekends. Mallory Lynn Gray, 13, a resident of Hudson,

died October 18, 2009, at Children’s Hospital in Boston, MA, following a long courageous battle with Rheumatoid Arthritis, and with Leukemia. I would like to present the parents with checks from contributors as well as a check from the proceeds of the first annual St. Patrick’s Day Corn Beef and Cabbage Dinner and Roast to be held at Te White Birch Catering and Banquet Hall located on Route 111 next to the Nan King Chinese Restaurant. Te event will take place on Saturday, March 17, and

the evening will begin at 4 p.m. with a cocktail hour and dinner to follow at 5. After dinner entertainment will include the Roasting of well know personalities and Karaoke and dance music for all to enjoy. Tables of four, six, or eight will be available. Governor John Lynch is planning on attending the event and he will be roasted. Please make your check payable to Mal’s Pal’s

Organization and know that it is tax deductible. Please mail your checks to me at 10 Rita Avenue, Hudson, NH 03051. Tickets for the dinner are available at Roger’s, 95

River Road in Hudson or by contacting me or Lee Lavoie or Jeremy Griffus. Tank you so much for caring and helping.

Roger E. Coutu – Hudson Further Investigations Into

Sharma’s Work With the School District

Kudos to the reader who followed-up about the concern with the consultant hired by the Hudson School Board and to the Hudson-Litchfield News for reporting it. After reading last weeks headline: “Sharma’s Earlier Ethics Violations Questioned” by Kristen Hoffman, I too, did some research. I encourage Hudson residents to investigate for themselves. I would expect that the School Board would have had some reservations in hiring a consultant when they knew of his questionable past reported actions as were

stated in last week’s article. In addition to the ethics violations, I wanted to understand more about ‘philosophical mathematical knowledge’ that the consultant purportedly retains. Tis led me to the topic of “Dyscalculia,” the details of which are sparse. About all I can determine about dyscalculia is that some persons can’t relate numbers to patterns: i.e., a person would need numbers printed on a playing card, for example, to determine the value of the playing card. Another of Sharma’s points-of- view is that he recommends consistency in teaching methods as the students progress. Both points are fairly straightforward to the layperson. I couldn’t find out much more about the topic other than this. I couldn’t find any recommendation from NH

Department of Education other than a bullet point on a summary report, oddly enough, identifying Sharma specifically by name whereas all other points contained within were far more general. Te report states that the reviewed school’s advantage was that: “Te staff has participated in professional development in the area of math with Dr. Mahesh Sharma.” Somewhat curiously, the report did not list any math teachers as team members whom were associated with the reporting. I couldn’t find any mention of his curricula vitae online, which would have been helpful in determining his credentials. It is not clear whether or not the consultant has a doctoral degree and from which institution. From the Website: “With the extensive

professional development with Professor Mahesh Sharma and the new curriculum and text, the district is hoping to see similar growth as seen in language arts. Te New Hampshire Department of Education has adopted the national core standards and Hudson is busy making sure that our curriculum is aligned with these new targets.” Is Hudson being required to maintain a consultant for a seemingly esoteric topic? Was this consultant chosen because there are very few others with expertise in this topic? From an economic standpoint: Is the taxpayers’ expense justified by the value provided by the consultant? More specificity in the article would have been helpful here, as the payments to the consultant could total: 4 elementary schools, visited 3x per year, at $2,500, ‘on the days he works in the schools.’ Tis yields: 4 x 3 x $2500 = $30,000. He also works with Hudson Memorial twice per year which may add another $5,000, for a total of $35,000. Te payments may only be for a total of 14 x 8 hours = 112 hours of work. But it could total a lot more per the ‘… extensive professional development …’ mentioned above. Perhaps the schools have already extracted the necessary knowledge from the consultant, and can implement his teachings without unnecessary additional expense. Clarification of the exact payments to the consultant would be very helpful in determining the value Hudson’s schools receive. At a minimum, the Hudson

School Board should use to Hudson’s advantage, any factors which may mitigate the costs to the taxpayers with future negotiations with the consultant. Tis would be an ethical thing to do. Mahesh Sharma will be a guest at a Parent Workshop in the spring, according to the

Bill Hubbard – Litchfield

Pat Jewett Has the Experience Litchfield Needs

I’m M. Patricia “Pat” Jewett, candidate for Selectman,

resident of Litchfield since 1950. I was married to Will Jewett for 47 years before he passed away with cancer over two years ago. I have four grown children, five grandchildren, and a great-grandson. I graduated from the University of New Hampshire with a Bachelor of Science degree and a master’s degree from Lowell State College. I retired from Nashua School District with over 30 years as an elementary teacher and Disabilities Specialist.

I became involved in town in 1952 as a member of the Conservation Committee and I have been involved ever since. I’ve been working with youth by being a 4-H Club

leader, Sunday School teacher, Cub Scout Den Mother, PTA officer, Youth Group leader, coached recreation girls’ volleyball and softball, Recreation Committee member for seven years and Friends of CHS. I was in local community services as leader of the food distribution “Share,” assisted with Fire Department, Women’s Club, CHS and Senior Citizens yard sales. Also still on the Board of Directors for Nashua Area Mental Health Center. Organizer of the Service Heroes Christmas packages for years with residents supporting them. Volunteered to be the leader for the 275th Town’s Anniversary and involved in the Town’s 250 Anniversary. In local government service was a dedicated

Selectman for 25 years, on Budget Committee, School Board member for 16 years, ZBA member, Welfare Director for 22 years, in charge of Town’s Clean-up Day 14 years, responsible for the use of the two reader boards at Town Hall for 11 years, member of Regional Planning Commission for eight years, Treasurer for four years, also organized and ran memorial Day, Pearl Harbor Day and Veterans Day programs for many years.

I would appreciate your vote as I have plenty of time, energy and experience to make sure our town is properly represented at the local, county and state level. I have been known to be fair-minded and frugal. Tere is a difference in being right and frugal. I try to spend the Town’s money as I do my own – because part of it is mine. Volunteerism has been the backbone of our Town for

278 years. I want to continue it that way to save the Town money and continue to make our Town special. Come to meet me, “Meet Your Candidates Program,”

Saturday, March 3, at 10 a.m. at CHS. Tis is your opportunity to see and question all candidates. If you have any questions and can’t attend the forum, call me at 424-6636. I’d appreciate your vote.


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M. Patricia Jewett - Litchfield

Campbell’s FIRST Robotics Team Tanks the School Board for Teir Support

FIRST® - For Inspiration and Recognition of Science

and Technology. Te members of the Campbell High School Robotics Team have been living by this maxim for the past four weeks. By night, the team has transformed the shop and computer lab into a cacophony of buzzing, clicking and contemplation. Te technologically adept, the business savvy, and the creatively- inclined have joined forces. Each have contributed their gifts toward the common goal of making an impression in the upcoming competition at the Verizon Wireless Arena in Manchester on March 2 and 3.

Te Campbell High school FIRST® Robotics Team would like to express their gratitude towards the Litchfield School Board and citizens. At a deliberative session in September, the school board and Litchfield residents expressed their appreciation for the positive

impact FIRST Robotics has had on ambitious young adults. When put to a vote, there was an almost unanimous decision to contribute funds to the Campbell High School FIRST Robotics Team. Te support from the town and school board have been instrumental to the Robotics Team as a whole. With their encouragement, this team was able to hit the ground running! Team 3323 thanks you all. We’ll see you at the competition!

Christina Lepore - Litchfield

Captain Avery Apologized for Another Officer’s Rude Remarks I recently wrote in about an experience I had with

a Hudson Police Officer and his rudeness towards me. Te letter I wrote was included in an issue of the Hudson~Litchfield News. Te morning the paper came out I received a phone call from Hudson PD Captain Avery. Needless to say, this caught me off guard. Captain Avery was calling to thank me for being honest and having the guts to say something. He apologized to me for the Officer’s behavior and stated to me that there would be repercussions for his actions. Neither of these were my intent when I wrote the

letter, but the fact that the Captain of the HPD took the time out to call me at home personally showed me a lot. It was nice to know that the relationship that the Police Department has with the public is very important to him.

I just thought it a nice conclusion to what started out as a bad situation and wanted to write a follow- up to my letter letting everyone who read it know that rudeness is not the norm for the HPD, nor is it acceptable behavior to them. Tank you very much Captain Avery and the rest of the Hudson Police Department.

Derek Libby - Hudson Mavrogeorge for School Board

My name is James H. Mavrogeorge and I am running for Litchfield School Board. Over the past few years Litchfield taxpayers have been under assault by a select few individuals all on the guise of “for the children.” Te truth of the matter is little discussion has been done to actually improve the quality of education the children the last few years. Why have children with special educational needs not received the help they needed? We spend less on the actual needs of the children in the community while we look to find ways to help those that can do a good enough job helping themselves like the current proposal to fund a wrestling program with $9,825 of your tax dollars. I’m just trying to draw a comparison between need and want and how the two conflict with actually addressing the academic needs of the children of Litchfield, especially the children that cannot help themselves. We need to do a better job directing the financial resources already in place to the children of Litchfield. So why consider me? I am a retired Air Force

Master Sergeant with 21 years of honorable military service. During my Air Force career I managed large personnel and non personnel resources especially in hard economic times when we were asked to do more with less. After retiring from the Air Force I helped build two successful background screening companies. One was sold for a respectable profit. Te other is still active here in the Litchfield community despite the hard economic times as well as a ten-fold increase in State fees. It took great fiscal restraint while providing the same level of service our clients expected to keep the company solvent. While other companies like ours failed, we weathered the storm and are now stronger than ever. Recently Derek Barka announced his candidacy for School Board as well. A vote for Mr. Barka is a vote for the same policies and spending already in place. Mr. Barka would argue that opposing arguments to the current policies are negative, non-constructive and lack respect. I disagree with that assessment completely. Over the last few years there has been little discussion on actually improving the educational environment for the children of Litchfield. We need a candidate willing to get in, roll up his sleeves and look for waste and excess spending in areas that make no sense. We then need to direct the resources already in place to solve the problems that actually hinder the children of Litchfield from getting the education they need to be able to compete in today’s world. We need a candidate who recognizes, and will work towards the needs of the children of Litchfield while not creating an excess tax burden on the people that have to pay the bill. Fiscal restraint does not mean settling for minimum educational standards for the children of Litchfield.

James H. Mavrogeorge - Litchfield

Letters to our Editor - continued to page 5

© FDL 2003


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