Multi-Arts Looking For Art/Poetry/Writing Submissions

Multi-Arts is excited to announce plans to produce a play inspired by Carl Sagan’s “Pale Blue Dot”. This  production is set to premiere Summer 2020, and will have elements of live music, narration, and of course, fantastical sets & props!

We invite child under 18 to watch this video, reflect on Sagan’s words, and create art/poetry/writing inspired by it. At the heart of this production will be a story about taking care of our planet, and inspiring change so that we may all preserve this beautiful pale blue dot.

The deadline for submissions is April 7th, and winners will have their ideas incorporated into the final script. Prizes also include up to $300 for applicants 13-18 years old, and a free day at Multi-Arts for ages 4-12.

Final script will be written by Maia Kinney-Petrucha, a children’s playwright and theater educator specializing in immersive and devised entertainment for all ages. Her background in cognitive science drives her love of theatrical research, and using the power of play to heal and foster empathy through storytelling.

Renowned composer Luna Pearl Woolf will breathe life into the story with stirring, original compositions. Woolf has created commissioned works for the likes of Carnegie Hall and the Washington National Opera.

Multi-Arts’ art teacher, Julio Neijens, will lend his expertise in set & prop building, and artistic direction. He has worked as head carpenter and painter in theater productions throughout Chicago. Julio has also worked with the Lincoln Park Zoo, making play items for the animals to help keep them healthy and active!

Reply to this email or send submissions to

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Message From ARHS Counselours

Dear Families,
This message is from the Counseling Department staff at Amherst Regional High School. First and foremost, we want to back our Superintendent in prioritizing the health and safety of your family and those around you. We know this is a difficult time to navigate and we will continue to be a resource for you here at ARHS.  Please note the following messages from the ARHS counselors:
1. If you or a family member faces an emotional health crisis, please contact Clinical and Support Options immediately. CSO has an emergency hotline open 24 hours a day and can be reached at (413) 586-5555. Here is a link to their website: emergency-crisis- stabilization-services
2. Counselors will respond to emails within 48 hours and sooner when possible.
3. Counselors will review all student course registrations through Powerschool while school is closed and will contact students individually if they have any questions. For students who did not register via Powerschool:  If you completed a paper registration form, please take a photo of it and send it to your caseload counselor (email addresses below) and or email your counselor the list of your requests. (Remember all students need at least one back up for each elective.)  All students can still expect to receive a paper Course Verification Form with everything they signed up for in late spring and changes will still be able to be made at that time. Let us assure you that we will be working hard to make sure all students have their requests in Powerschool well before any student is placed into any classes next year (as in years past, students will not be placed into classes until the summer). Here is a link to the Program of Studies if needed (the link is in the first sentence on the page): amherst-pelham-regional-high- school/course-registration
4. Upon the re-opening of school, counselors will do their best to reschedule meetings with families that were supposed to occur over the next few weeks, such as Case Conferences and 504s.
5. Karen Peters, our BRYT clinician is continuing to reach out to families connected to BRYT and offering related support.
6.  Our trusty College and Career Counselor, Deidre Cuffee-Gray will continue communication with junior and senior families.
7. In consideration of the range of emotions students may be having, we are attaching a few resources related to relaxation techniques, coping skills, and deep breathing. There is also a mandala that families may want to print and color to unwind and work on together.
We send you all our very best during these weeks of transition and uncertainly and please know we have every intention of continuing to support the students at ARHS.
Best regards,
Lisa Zephyr (
Sherry Balzano (
Kelly Larcheveque (
Alessandra Mucci-Ramos (
Deidre Cuffee-Gray, College and Career Counselor, (
Karen Peters, BRYT Clinician
Posted in Parent News

ARPS COVID-19 Communication & Resources

Our students and staff is paramount, therefore, we are continuously monitoring the news surrounding COVID-19 and regular updates will continue to be provided to the ARPS community and posted on this website:

Any District plans or responses will be developed in accordance with the latest guidance from the Town of Amherst, MA Department of Public Health (DPH) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

We recognize that reports of the impact of COVID-19 in the U.S. and around the world can be very troubling. Resources and support are available for students through school-based counseling services (that will be provided online, more information will be provided for these services) and for staff through All One Health Employee Assistance Program. If you are an employee of the district and need to contact All One Health, please call (800) 451-1834 (available 24/7).

You can access up-to-date information about COVID-19 on the MA DPH COVID-19 website. Moving forward, we will continue to communicate with you regularly as new information becomes available. The Frequently Asked Questions included below will also be updated as new information becomes available.

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Meals for ARPS Students

ARPS is pleased to share that they are delivering meals, once a day, to 13 different locations in Amherst for families who access our federal nutrition program. We are attaching the flier with the locations and times we will be delivering lunch and breakfast during weekdays.

Please note volunteers will be at each of these locations to help with the distribution. We ask that people come, pick up their meal bag and promptly return home. We must follow the state guidance of not having large groups of people congregating in one place.

We are all working hard to make this possible and we may need to make changes as we go along. Please let us know if you have any questions by calling 413-362-1871 or emailing

See Scheduled Here

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Spring Sports Update

The MIAA Board of Directors has voted to delay to the start of the 2020 Spring season to April 27th.  Respecting the fluidity of this situation, this decision will be revisited in the near future.

For FAQs from the MIAA on this decision, pease visit:

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March SEPAC Updates

Dear SEPAC families,

During this unexpected school closure we are wishing all our district families much love, but especially our families whose children find unexpected changes in routine particularly difficult.  Wishing you love, and patience, and strength.

Through this closure, SEPAC will endeavour to continue to fill our role in advising the district about matters concerning our special education students.  However, we will not be able to have regular board meetings while the schools are closed. Our next meeting scheduled for April 3 is cancelled. Please email us at with any questions or concerns that you think SEPAC should be aware of. We will remain in contact with the Student Services office.

Our two spring events, Autism Awareness Night and Stars to Special Education are also cancelled.  Please take time to directly thank all those who have positively impacted the life of your special education student.

Please see attached a letter that was sent to district special education parents on March 15.


Heather Sheldon and Catherine Lodge, SEPAC Co-Presidents




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Amherst School Committee Vacancy

The Town Council and School Committee will hold joint meetings to fill a School Committee vacancy on April 14 at 6:00 pm and April 16 at 6:00 pm in the Town Room, Town Hall, 4 Boltwood Avenue.

Interviews will be conducted on Tuesday, April 14, 2020, 6:00 pm, at a special joint meeting of the Amherst Town Council and the School Committee. If necessary, the remaining interviews will be conducted on Thursday, April 16, 2020, 6:00 pm at a special joint meeting of the Amherst Town Council and the School Committee. The candidate will be selected at a special joint meeting of the Town Council and the School Committee at a meeting on April 16, 2020. Candidate Statement of Interest due by Tuesday, March 31, 4:00 PM.

Interviews to fill the vacancy on the Amherst School Committee will be conducted on Tuesday, April 14, 2020, 6:00 pm, at a special joint meeting of the Amherst Town Council and the remaining members of the Amherst School Committee. If necessary, the remaining interviews will be conducted on Thursday, April 16, 2020, 6:00 pm at a special joint meeting of the Amherst Town Council and the School Committee. The candidate will be selected at a special joint meeting of the Town Council and the School Committee at a meeting on April 16, 2020. Both special joint meeting will take place at 6:00 pm in the second floor Town Room, Amherst Town Hall, 4 Boltwood Avenue. Amherst Media will broadcast the meeting live on channel 17. Public comment will not be part of this special meeting.

Amherst Home Rule Charter, Section 4.1.c, and MGL Chapter 41 Section 11 govern vacancies in elected Town-wide office other than the Town Council. Law requires a roll call vote of both bodies, and the winning candidate must receive a majority of votes of the remaining filled seats on both boards. Under the law, absences and abstentions do not affect that requirement, so at least nine positive votes must be made for the selected individual, regardless of how many members of the Town Council and Amherst School Committee are present.

The selected individual shall be sworn in by the Town Clerk at Amherst Town Hall during business hours as soon as possible and will serve until newly elected members of the Amherst School Committee are sworn in on Monday, January 3, 2022. If the selected individual also wishes to be on the November 2, 2021 ballot for a two-year term, s/he must follow the same process as any other candidate for Town-wide office. Per the Amherst Home Rule Charter, the individual will not be listed on the ballot as “a candidate for re-election”.

The new Amherst School Committee member also serves on the Amherst-Pelham Regional School Committee. Check the schools’ website for already scheduled meetings of the Amherst School Committee and Amherst-Pelham Regional School Committee. Depending on schedules and interest, the new Amherst School Committee member may also serve as a member on either the Town of Amherst Joint Capital Planning Committee (JCPC) and/or the Town of Amherst Budget Coordinating Group (BCG).

Candidate Statements of Interest are due by 4:00 pm EST, March 31, 2020. This deadline cannot be extended. A Statement of Interest must be submitted in order to be considered at the meeting of April 14, 2020 or, if necessary, April 16, 2020. Candidates must be physically present at the meeting in the Town Room in order to be considered.

Statements of Interest shall not exceed one single side 8.5 x 11 page (12-point font) and shall include candidate contact information, including name, address of voter registration, email, and at least one telephone number, reasons the candidate wishes to serve on the Amherst School Committee, and the candidate’s qualifications and experience. Resumes and attachments will not be accepted. A description of the Amherst School Committee responsibilities and expectations is also available on the Town Website. This should inform candidates Statements of Interest.

Statements of Interest will be available to the public on the Town web site and as part of the Town Council and School Committee meeting packet materials for the special April 14, 2020 and April 16, 2020 meetings.

On the Wednesday prior to the meeting, the Town Council President will send an email providing all candidates, all members of the Amherst School Committee, and all Town Council members with the process adopted by the Town Council so all are aware of the how the vacancy will be filled. The email will also include the candidates’ Statements of Interest; a description of the Amherst School Committee’s responsibilities and expectations; and questions for the candidate. This material will also be available in the Town Council’s meeting packet materials for the April 14, 2020 and the April 16, 2020 meetings.

Email (preferred) or hard copy Statements of Interest must be made to Clerk of the Town Council Athena O’Keeffe at Amherst Town Hall, 4 Boltwood Ave, Amherst MA 01002. All submissions must include the candidate’s name, address of voter registration, email, and at least one telephone number. A Candidate’s eligibility will be determined within three days of submitting their Statement of Interest

Contact: Athena O’Keeffe: (, Clerk of the Town Council | Phone (413) 259-3209

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