Pelham - Windham News | March 16, 2012 - 5 Accolades for Retiring School Board Members
by Barbara O’Brien Two of the five Windham School Board members holding seats prior to the March 13 election chose not to seek re-election for a second term. The duo who opted out was Chairman Ed Gallagher and Jeff Bostic. At their final school board meeting, Gallagher and Bostic were applauded for their efforts and dedication during their three years of service to the community. Long-time school board member Bruce Anderson, who served as
vice-chairman this past year, talked of the great strides that Bostic and Gallagher have made during their three-year terms. Anderson explained how he had “cajoled, begged and gnashed his teeth” in attempts to convince Bostic and Gallagher to seek another term on the school board, even trying to make them feel “guilty” for deserting the other three board members. But, it was to no avail, despite his best efforts, Anderson said. “The school board works best when we have a variety of unique talents,” Anderson stated. Bostic, who is both a child psychiatrist and a medical doctor, also has a degree in the field of education. Bostic’s major accomplishment involved his efforts to push for an integrated curriculum from kindergarten through 12th grade, Anderson said. Bostic’s efforts have always focused on what is best for the students, Anderson said. Gallagher, who is an executive vice president for Comcast,
was noted for his extensive business experience and his ability at negotiating. “Ed really helped us get what we needed to enact the curriculum,” Anderson said, commenting on all the work Gallagher did while working in cooperation with the capital improvement plan (CIP) committee. “Both Ed and Jeff really emphasized performance management”
as school board members, Anderson said. “And there are no bigger fans of high-quality teachers.” “What Ed and Jeff have accomplished will have a positive impact on the school district for years to come,” Anderson added. Michelle Farrell, who recalled that she was the only woman on
the board when she first became a member, said she appreciated the fact that Gallagher and Bostic both treated her with respect and valued her opinions. “I regard Ed as my mentor,” Farrell said, adding that one of his strongest characteristics is the ability to listen to what others have to say. “Ed speaks very eloquently and always maintains an even temper,” Farrell said. “He served this community with grace.” Farrell also said that Gallagher always worked to assure that every dollar was spent wisely and that all expenses undertaken were cost-effective. As for Bostic, Farrell commented how he always holds students in the highest regard. “Jeff always looks at each student as an individual,” she said. “He champions those who require individual learning styles.” “Jeff has brought a tremendous amount of knowledge to the school district,” she said. School board member Stephanie Wimmer said that Bostic has “been a huge resource for me.” “He has been very kind, very patient,” she said. As for Gallagher, Wimmer described him “as the voice of reason.” “Ed listens to what everyone has to say,” Wimmer said, whether it’s someone on the school board or someone from the public sector.
Interim Superintendent Henry LaBranche, who took over those duties last June, said, “All in all, working with members of this board has been a rewarding experience.” “Although, sometimes,” he joked, “It felt like I was trying to herd cats.” “Each of you, in your own way, has been a challenge,” LaBranche laughed. More importantly, though, LaBranche continued, “Each of you
always put the students first.” “There has been a great diversification on this board,” LaBranche added, with each member bringing valuable assets to the table. Christine Carpenter, student representative to the Windham
School Board, told Gallagher and Bostic, “You’re amazing people. It shows in all the opportunities that have been provided to Windham students.” Carpenter is a junior at Windham High School. When it was his turn to address his fellow board members,
Kindergarten Addition ‘On Schedule; On Budget’ by Barbara O’Brien According to Henry LaBranche, interim superintendent for SAU
28, the seven-classroom kindergarten addition to Windham’s Golden Brook School is not only “on schedule, but on budget,” as well. LaBranche provided the latest update on the $2.5 million project during the Windham School Board’s meeting on March 6. As of that meeting, the structure was fully enclosed and contractors were in the process of pouring the concrete flooring, LaBranche said. Referring to the mild winter being experienced in southern New Hampshire this year, LaBranche reported that it has been “a very good construction season,” in which there were no delays for weather; at least not since the late October snowstorm that pelted the area two days before Halloween and left many residents without power for nearly a week. There is still some problem-solving going on regarding certain aspects of the construction, according to LaBranche, but nothing that isn’t “manageable,” he emphasized. “All is good,” LaBranche told school board members.
In response to a question from the school board, LaBranche responded that the playground apparatus at Golden Brook, which needed to be moved to allow for the construction of the addition, would be set up again and ready for students by the beginning of the new school year in late August. It is also expected that kindergartners will be occupying their new classrooms about the same time. Presently, kindergarten classes are housed in portable classrooms paid for with money from the State Department of Education. This is the final year that the State funding would be available. Windham’s public kindergarten program was implemented in 2009, the same year that Windham High School opened its doors to students for the first time.
Two Arrested During Prescription Drug Investigation
submitted by Pelham Police Department On Wednesday, March 7, at approximately 5 p.m., members of
the Pelham Police Department Criminal Bureau arrested Nathan Turgeon, 24, of Tyngsborough, MA. Turgeon was arrested on Mammoth Road during a motor vehicle stop on an arrest warrant charging him with the Sale of Narcotic Drugs (Percocet). The warrant was issued after a month-long investigation into the sale of the prescription drug Percocet within the town of Pelham. Turgeon was transported to the Pelham Police Department and held overnight and was arraigned before the Nashua District Court on March 8. Turgeon is currently being held on $10,000 cash bail. During the course of this investigation Ashley Walsh, 24, also of Tyngsborough, was arrested on February 21. She was charged with Possession of Percocet and Possession of Suboxone. Walsh was released on $500 personal recognizance bail shortly after her arrest and was ordered to appear before the 10th Circuit Court- Salem on March 12. This investigation is ongoing and further arrests are pending.
Permanent Prescription Drug Collection Box
submitted by Windham Police Department The Windham Police Department is pleased to announce that it has established a permanent prescription drug collection box located in the lobby of the Police Department located at 4 Fellows Road. Any resident or citizen is welcome to dispose of unused, unwanted, or expired medications at their convenience.
According to Chief Gerald Lewis, “During the
last several Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) “Take-Back” days the Windham community responded overwhelmingly, turning in some of the highest amounts of prescription medications in the State of New Hampshire. We hope to continue this successful and worthwhile process by providing a permanent collection facility rather than having residents and other citizens’ hold onto these medications for disposal once or twice a year.” Through a partnership with the National Association of Drug Diversion Investigators (NADDI) Windham was fortunate to obtain the collection box free of charge. According to Chief Lewis, “by establishing and maintaining relationships with other organizations, both in the public and private sector, we have the opportunity to provide unique and timely services that make a difference in the community we serve.”
Prescription Drugs and other medications can be dropped off anytime in the lobby
of the Police Department. Interaction with Police Department personnel is not required nor is there any paperwork to complete. Simply deposit the items in the collection box and walk away.
Items that can be dropped off include prescriptions and other pharmaceutical drugs,
over the counter medications, drug samples, and medications for pets. Items that are not accepted in the drop box include needles (sharps), thermometers, bloody or infectious waste, liquids of any kind, aerosol cans, and inhalers. A separate “Sharps” container will be available at the collection box location. Persons wishing to dispose of or turn-in illicit substances (e.g. marijuana, cocaine, cocaine, heroin, methamphetamine, MDMA, LSD, etc.) will be required to speak with a police officer for such purpose.
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Gallagher said, “Candidly, three years seems like a really long time!” “It has been a lot of work,” he said, “but, at the same time, so satisfying and richly rewarding to serve with people of such high caliber.” “It has been an honor,” Gallagher said. “What a wonderful school district we have.” Bostic summed up his feelings by saying, “I am very grateful to have been a part of this journey.” The next school board meeting, which will include the two newly elected members replacing Gallagher and Bostic, will take place on Tuesday, March 19, beginning at 7 p.m. at the SAU #28 building.
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