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News Briefs: Multicultural arts programs for BHRSD; community education forum on marijuana; school committee candidates’ forum

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By Wednesday, Oct 19, 2016 News

Mahaiwe to present multicultural arts programs for BHRSD students

Baba Israel.

Baba Israel.

Great Barrington — The Mahaiwe Performing Arts Center will present arts education events to celebrate diversity in the Berkshire Hills Regional School District (BHRSD).

On Friday, Oct. 21, at 9:30 a.m. at Monument Mountain Regional High School (MMRHS), LeLand Gantt will perform “Rhapsody in Black,” a one-man show that explores his personal journey to understand and eventually transcend racism in America. The performance is a co-presentation with Multicultural BRIDGE and will include a question-and-answer session with the students. At 12:30 p.m. at Monument Valley Regional Middle School, Baba Israel, Yako 440, and Ken Fury of Open Thought Productions will lead a teacher training workshop that explores how hip-hop and spoken word can transform classroom experiences, provide a platform for students’ creative expression, and address the needs of the curriculum. The Mahaiwe will bring Baba Israel, Yako 440, and Ken Fury back to the Berkshires in November for a weeklong hip-hop residency working with middle school students at Monument Valley, Mt. Everett Regional High School, and St. Mary’s School. The residency will culminate with a $5 public performance on the Mahaiwe stage at 7 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 18.

“I have found social justice in collaboration with the dedicated arts community of the Berkshires a powerful and necessary tool in addressing community concerns of racial justice. Especially working with the students and faculty this week, we will have an opportunity for witnessing self expression through the arts and the power each individual has to catalyze change in our own community,” said Multicultural BRIDGE Executive Director Gwendolyn Hampton VanSant.

“We look forward to this event being an integral part of our school’s work to address racism and strengthen our school community,” said MMRHS Principal Marianne Young.

Due to space restrictions, the events are provided for BHRSD students, faculty, and staff only and are not open to the public.


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Community education forum on marijuana

Dalton — The First Congregational Church will hold a community education forum on marijuana on Monday, Oct. 24, from 5:30 to 7 p.m. The event is free and open to the public.

The community conversation will feature Brien Center Medical Director Dr. Jennifer Michaels and International Marijuana Education Committee co-chair Jo McGuire as guest speakers, and their presentations will address the impact of marijuana on a young person’s brain and ways to foster healthy decisions in youth.

For more information, please contact Nataly Garzon at 413-442-6948.


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BHRSD school committee candidates’ forum

Great Barrington — The NEWSletter and the Great Barrington Democratic Town Committee will hold a forum for all candidates for Berkshire Hills Regional School District (BHRSD) School Committee on Wednesday, Oct. 26, at 7 p.m. at the Claire Teague Senior Center. Three committee seats are open for Great Barrington. Diane Singer and incumbent Rich Dohoney are on the ballot, with Michael Farmer and Anne Hutchinson running on write-ins.

Sean Stephen is on the ballot for the one seat in Stockbridge. Andrew Potter seeks re-election in West Stockbridge. The forum’s audience will be invited to ask questions. Michelle Gilligan will moderate.


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