Cavendish Update 2/5/16

  1921 Wheeler School (Twenty Mile and Chapman Rd) Photograph.

1921 Wheeler School (Twenty Mile and Chapman Rd) Photograph.

2/5/16 Cavendish Update
1. Cavendish Related News
2. Safe at Last In Cavendish
3. Events
 
1. CAVENDISH RELATED NEWS
Recent Theft on Twenty Mile:
 The press release from the VT State police reports the robbery at 651 Twenty Mile Stream Road in Cavendish. The address is most likely 2651, which is a construction site. According to the report, sometime between the afternoon of 2/3/16 and morning of 2/4/16, tools were taken from the property. Anyone with information or who may have seen suspicious activity in the area is asked to contact State Police 802-875-2112.
 
GMUHS Annual School District Report and FY 2017 Proposed Budget: The Report is available electronically, by calling the GMUHS Principal’s office at 875-2146 or e-mailing GMUHSAnnualReport@trsu.org Printed copies are available at the Cavendish Town Office and at GMUHS. The Annual meeting for GMUHS is on Tuesday, Feb. 23. Click for an electronic version. 
 
Cavendish Town and School Budget/Ballot for 2017-2017: The Town budget for FY 2016-2017 is $1,344,981, while the Cavendish Town Elementary School budget for the same time period is $1,914,620. Both budgets are close to a 1% increase over the previous year. There are no contested races for elected positions. The town budget will be voted on for adoption at Town Meeting on Monday, Feb. 29, 7 pm at the Cavendish School. The school budget will be voted by Australian ballot on Tuesday, March 1, 10-7 at the school. For more information and the slate of elected offices, go to The Dish
 
Two $1,000 Sammy Pierce Memorial Scholarship for Cavendish and Area Students: A real estate professional Pierce died tragically in a motorcycle accident and a scholarship fund was established in his name. Eligibility is for students from Andover, Baltimore, Cavendish, Chester, Grafton, Ludlow, Mount Holly, Rockingham, Springfield, and Weathersfield who are continuing education in a 2 or 4 year college program. Public and private school students, home schooled, college, adult learners, and previous recipients may apply. While the course of study is not restricted in any way, the applicants must have a strong history of volunteer community service. Applications and information for the Sammy Pierce Memorial Scholarships are available at your local High School, or by contacting Helen Wachtel at 802-275-3902. For more scholarship information as well as other ways to fund Cavendish students to wish to pursue post secondary education, go to Paying for College: Never Too Soon or Too Late. 
 
Senior Companions are Needed for Southern VT: As a Senior Companion volunteer, you’ll join a support network that creates new possibilities and improves the quality of life for elders in your community. Senior Companions spend time with elders who are homebound and/or socially isolated. Activities might include visiting while sharing a cup of tea, playing a game of cards or taking a walk together. Senior Solutions is looking for volunteers age 55+ who are willing to spend about 15 hours per week, visiting seniors in your area. Volunteers will receive a small tax-free stipend, an orientation, training, and mileage reimbursement. But of course the greatest reward is helping relieve the loneliness of a local Senior. FMI: Senior Solutions, Abby Eldridge, 802-257-2338. 
 
VT Implements Tougher Battery Recycling: And as of January, Vermont became the first state to require disposable battery manufacturers to make battery recycling more convenient. "The legislation leads the way for a more convenient way for Vermont residents to dispose of their batteries as Vermont residents are now able to recycle all their household batteries, including AA, AAA, C, D, among other battery-types, by bringing them to drop-off locations throughout the state.” In Cavendish you can take your used batteries to the Cavendish Transfer Station.  For other sites, go to Find Recycling Locations VPR
 
VT Spends 10% More than Needed on Education: A nearly 300-page report by Allan Odden, Lawrence Picus and Michael Griffith says that by applying their “evidence-based” school funding model, Vermont could have saved $164 million, or 10 percent, on pre-kindergarten through 12th grade education during the year they examined. Special education is the reason for the lion’s share of the costs. The next big-ticket item is the high number of staff in relation to students in Vermont’s schools. Costs associated with numerous small systems that lack efficiencies also drive up the price of education, the researchers said. VT Digger
 
2. SAFE AT LAST IN CAVENDISH
Written in honor of Black History Month, a new short story from the Cavendish Historical Society (CHS), draws its inspiration from information obtained during the recording of oral histories. As the story goes, a female slave became pregnant after coming to Cavendish via the “underground railroad.”  Consequently, she was given a woodlot for a homestead and she made a living by cleaning, cooking, sewing, doing laundry and other chores.
 
How factual the story is unknown. However, there is good documentation of Cavendish Civil War soldiers bringing former slaves to the community after the war.  Early pictures of students in the various schoolhouses of Cavendish show African descent students. One such picture is from the 1921 Wheeler (Twenty Mile Stream) school that identifies a black student as James or “Sunny.”  No last name was provided. While we have learned that Sunny’s (James) mother was a cook at the Bates Mansion, and probably attended the Wheeler School for several years, if you have any additional information, please e-mail margoc@tds.net or call 802-226-7807.
 
Safe at Last in Cavendish is a fictionalized account of how a female slave could have ended up here and contains a number of facts about the town’s role in the abolitionist movement. Following the story is more Cavendish history. Read the story at the CHS blog.  
 
3. EVENTS
February 6 (Saturday)
Potluck supper and informational discussion at 5 pm at Gethsemane Church for anyone wanting to learn more about the Church’s trip to El Salvador. FMI: Rev. Todd McKee at GethsemaneChurchVT@gmail.com or 603-667-5458.
 
February 8 (Monday): Monthly Select Board Meeting, 6:30 pm at the Town Office. The Agenda will be posted to The Dish  when it becomes available.
 
For information on upcoming events, go to the Cavendish Connects February Calendar.