JP Resident Named Massachusetts Elementary Principal of the Year

Jamaica Plain's Craig Martin has been named the Thomas C. Passios Elementary Principal of the Year from the Massachusetts School Administrators’ Association. Martin has been the principal of the Michael J. Perkins School in South Boston since the 2013-14 school year, will also represent the Commonwealth in the National Distinguished Principal Program, sponsored by the National Association of Elementary School Principals, in Washington, D.C., in October. “I am greatly honored and humbled to be named Massachusetts Elementary Principal of the Year,” said Martin via a press release. “The students at the Perkins School have made tremendous strides, and it could not have happened without the growth of positive relationships and teamwork between the students, teachers, families, and administration.”

Leadership reflects attitude and Martin's attitude has filtered into Perkins' students, as they have demonstrated steady gains in performance during Martin’s leadership. One example is that Latino students and English Learners at the school surpassed the state average for these groups in English language arts and mathematics in this year MCAS.


Curley School Plant Sale on Saturday to Fund School Programs

The weather looks awesome for the 18th Annual Curley School Plant Sale this Saturday, and proceeds go to supporting arts, music and enrichment programs at the school. This is a wonderful community event organized by parent volunteers who create a popup nursery with a great selection of annuals, herbs and vegetables. Some of the parents have great green thumbs and can help with selections. There is also bake sale and art activities for the kids.  The sale is from 10 am to 2 pm in the municipal parking lot across from the Curley School. Get there early because last year everything sold!


JP’s JFK STEM Innovation School’s Pilot Program Honored by Non-Profit EdVestors

The John F. Kennedy STEM Innovation School was honored at non-profit EdVestor's 16th Annual Urban Education Showcase on April 10th. The JFK STEM Innovation School, located on Bolster Street in JP, was one of 10 Boston school-based projects recognized at the showcase that previously received seed investments of $10,000 each from EdVestors’ School Solutions Seed Fund. The John F. Kennedy STEM Innovation School shared results of its pilot program, Engineering Design in Literacy, that integrates the Engineering Design Process into their literacy curriculum, according to a press release. Through the program students design solutions and create functioning prototypes to address challenges faced by characters in the books they are reading. The pilot program includes a partnership with Tufts University’s Novel Engineering program, teachers and students to create solutions found in fiction and non-fiction books.


There Are More Than 74 Languages Spoken By Boston Public School Students

We know that Boston is a multicultural city and that is no more apparent than in the Boston Public School system. There are more than 56,000 students in BPS and they speak more than 74 languages. English is the most commonly spoken language with more than 30,000 students using it as their primary language at home. Followed by Spanish with more than 15,000, then Cape Verdean, Vietnamese and Haitian with 1,700 to 1,900 students. Thirteen students primarily speak American Sign Language at home.


Q&A: School Committee Chair on Start & End Times, School Selection Process and Busing

Michael Loconto was elected chairperson of the Boston Public School Committee in the beginning of 2018. As a parent of three school-age children he has a keen perspective of the school system. He answered questions from Jamaica Plain News about library services for schools, his relationship with Mayor Martin Walsh and more. Q:  Let's get some basics out of the way. You live in West Roxbury with your wife and three school-age kids?