Page 8 THE MALDEN ADVOCATE–Friday, May 5, 2023 ~ Letter to the Editor ~ Prayer from the forest A ttached is a “prayer from the forest” I wrote, which I read during public comment at the Northeast Regional Technical School (NEMT, aka the Voke, in Wakefield) school committee meeting on April 13th. To the Metro Tech Vocational School Building Committee From the Forest, a Prayer I gave your ancestors wood to Gerry D’Ambrosio Attorney-at-Law Is Your Estate in Order? Do you have an update Will, Health Care Proxy or Power of Attorney? If Not, Please Call for a Free Consultation. 14 Proctor Avenue, Revere (781) 284-5657 cook and keep warm Slender shoots for arrows Fruits to eat Plants for medicine I give you pine scent to savor Beauty to see Birdsong to hear Cool refreshment from summer’s heat Butterfl ies to delight Respite from cares Oxygen to breathe I ask you to let the animals who call me home, live To let my roots grow deeper into soil and rock To let my pools and streams nourish life To let my paths absorb the rain To let my treetops greet the morning sun For the love of this world And for the love of my small part of it — my trees, my earth, my creatures I ask you to look into your hearts I ask you to let me live Jane Robie Malden, MA Classifieds Advocate Call now! 617-387-2200 advertise on the web at www.advocatenews.net Our 50th Anniversary Dan - 1972 We Sell Cigars & Accessories! Chris 2023 * Travel Humidors * Desk Top Humidors * Many Types of Lighters * Ash Trays * Juuls * Vapes * Glass Pipes * Rewards Program * CBD Infused Products * GIFTS UNDER $30 - GIFT CERTIFICATES R.Y.O. TOBACCO & TUBES ON SALE! SPECIAL SALE! TRAVEL HUMIDORS & ALL BONGS! SPRING AHEAD - SAVE BIG BUCKS! CIGAR SMOKER’S DELIGHT! ALL MAJOR BRANDS Singles * Tins * Bundles * Boxes 15 Handmade Cigars - (incl. a Cohiba) $43.95 NEW STORE HOURS: Mon. - Sat.: 9AM - 7PM Sunday & Holidays: 9AM - 6PM A.B.C. CIGAR 170 REVERE ST., REVERE (781) 289-4959 --------HUMIDORS ON SALE! STARTING AT $99. COMPLETE! --------BUDGET | FROM PAGE 1 Toni Mertz made a presentation on the preliminary School Department budget at Monday night’s School Committee meeting that was well received by the members present. Assistant Supt. Mertz on Tuesday explained that the Malden Public Schools proposal that her department and central administration had formulated for the city’s allocation totaled $88.6 million. With the $91.38 million proposed allocation by Mayor Christenson, that would leave $2,272,287 in additional funding – above the School Department’s initial request – where some pressing needs could be addressed, she said. “This would not have happened without the eff orts of our state delegation for the state funding portion and the Mayor’s Offi ce in providing the recommended allocation,” Assistant Supt. Mertz said. She detailed the initial plans for the expenditure of the additional $2.27 million in funding that is expected to be available to the Malden Public Schools. These would all be additions to what is already proposed the be funded: —Building monitors: all schools. —School culture officers: all schools. —Adjustment counselors: in some schools where needed. —Spanish teachers: Linden and Ferryway Schools. —Wilson Reading: Forestdale School. —Registered Behavioral Technician (RBT): Ferryway School. —Assistant Principal: Forestdale. (There has been only one for several years.) —Administrative Assistant: Forestdale School. —STEM Teacher: Forestdale School. —Math Teacher: High School. —Health Teacher: High School. —English Learner Coach: District. “These are all staffi ng additions to the classrooms,” Superintendent Dr. Ligia Noriega-Murphy said at the meeting. “We need ‘boots on the ground’ to support our existing staff and students and that is what we would be doing here.” The new staffing would encompass the entire school district, Ward 5 School Committee member Adam Weldai noted. Weldai, before the budget presentation, spoke on work already underway to address needs at the Early Learning Center (ELC). Meetings have been held with staff and ELC Principal Tamara Lawrence, he said, and plans are in place that would increase staff - ing in the form of seven new RBT personnel, the addition of a new classroom, the return of a fulltime Program Manager, the addition of a building monitor and other additions. “We needed to make that investment and we are committed to it,” Weldai said, adding that additional meetings specifi cally to address the ELC and its staffi ng are planned. “I still believe we are not getting our fair share of Chapter 70 aid,” Assistant Supt. Mertz said of the direct state aid received for education. “When you compare us to other similar communities, they are getting far more Chapter 70 funding. For instance, Chelsea has about 100 more students than Malden, and receives about $50 million more in Chapter 70 than we do.” She encouraged all to continue to advocate to change the formula and try to get more Chapter 70 funding for Malden. “The staff - ing we could provide and what we could do with that $50 million would be such a benefi t to our schools.” Ward 5 School Committee member Adam Weldai echoed her comments. “Now is the time we can be lulled into a sense of complacency with our funding sources seemingly providing what we need, but the numbers are going to change as the city’s required contribution percentage increases along with the Chapter 70 funding,” Weldai said. “Please, everyone – not just Malden residents – contact your state legislators and ask them to work to adjust and change the formula for determining Chapter 70 aid.” Mayor Christenson, who is chairperson of the School Committee, also spoke on this issue, noting that the community is grateful for the state delegation’s “diligence in pursuing funding for Malden’s schools,” particularly through the full funding of the Mass. Student Opportunity Act (SOA) as well as more Chapter 70 funding for this year. Malden State Senator Jason Lewis (D-5th Middlesex) is in his second term as chair of the Legislature’s Joint Committee on Education and authored the SOA. Malden State Representative Steven Ultrino also serves on that committee, as vice chair. Mayor Christenson also noted the eff orts of Malden Chief Strategy Offi cer Ron Hogan in researching and recommending actions regarding the Chapter 70 funding issue. **** Next up in the budget process is another Malden School Committee budget subcommittee meeting at 6:00 p.m. on Monday, May 8. Information on how to tune in will be on the School Department (www.maldenps. org) and City of Malden (www. cityofmalden.org) websites. A formal public hearing on the school budget proposal is also upcoming with information appearing on the same two websites.

9 Publizr Home

You need flash player to view this online publication