In addition to the Simon’s Rock students, the protest included approximately 300 other people, including students from Berkshire Country Day, the Berkshire Waldorf School and Monument Mountain Regional High School.
The idea is to bring foreign students to enrich the experiences of current students at Mount Everett and, in the process, provide needed revenue to the school district and ultimately help boost district enrollments which have been dropping throughout the county.
It’s been a tumultuous last few weeks that included a bomb scare, an illegal vote by the school committee, a school committee walking out of a meeting and a vow by the town of Egremont to withhold hundreds of thousands of dollars in payments to the five-town regional school district.
Earlier in the meeting, there had been other surprises: Sears and Chairperson Bonnie Silvers, both of Sheffield, had been ousted from their leadership positions on the committee. Adding to the committee’s woes was that the vote was taken in open session, but by use of a secret ballot — a clear violation of the state’s Open Meeting Laws.
It does appear that a generational challenge is in the offing for the Nov. 6 elections. A flyer distributed throughout the district refers to a “clean slate for SBRSD school committee” and flatly states that “the candidates support the right of all the towns to have their elementary schools.”
Some parents appeared to be confused about whether faculty member Jim Berlstein’s post concerned actual safety at the school or his frustration with his own employment situation — or perhaps the employment situation of everyone on the faculty and staff.