The Carlisle Mosquito Online

Friday, January 25, 2002


The Carlisle Board of Appeals (BOA) voted unanimously last week to deny the variances requested by American Tower Corporation (ATC) and co-applicants to site their cell tower at 662 Bedford Road, on property offered by David Duren. ...more

The Carlisle Finance Committee (FinCom) is faced with a potential million-dollar gap between requests and the spending targets they set in their "guideline budget" for town departments. At their January 16 hearing they asked the Carlisle School Committee (CSC) to reduce their proposed budget to help close the gap. The total increase the school had asked for ($759,000, or 10.8% over this year's budget), is more than $406,000 over the FinCom guideline for the K-8 school. ...more

On Tuesday evening, at a joint meeting of the Concord Public School Committee and the Regional School Committee Superindent Ed Mavragis made a brief statement of resignation to a very still and quiet room. No one there was surprised at the news, but many were puzzled as to the reasons behind this sudden change after only three years in the job. ...more

Thirteen members of the Carlisle Public School faculty have declared their intention to retire during the next five years. If most do retire, Carlisle will experience a large loss in the ranks of its most experienced teachers. Why have so many decided to retire? (See list of potential retirees in the January 11 issue at ...more

The Carlisle Conservation Commission (ConsCom) has gained a welcome, and by the record versatile, colleague in Attorney Roy J. Watson, who took his seat at the Clark Room table on January 10. Recommended by the commission following introductory visits to their bi-weekly meetings, he was appointed by the board of selectmen to fill the post left vacant by the untimely death of former commissioner Eric Jensen. ...more

Christopher Azzara, associate professor of Music Education at the University of Hartford's Hartt School of Music, Theater and Dance, completed a three-day residency at the Carlisle Schools on Friday, January 11. During these three days, Dr. Azzara worked with students from second grade through sixth grade in their general music classes. He also worked as a conductor of the middle school chorus, show choir, senior band and the jazz band. The common thread that infused his instruction at all these levels was the attempt to impart a higher student (and staff) understanding of music through the medium of improvisation. Students were able to achieve this higher level of understanding, or "ownership" of their music through Azzara's solid, harmony-based pedagogy, and were helped in the experience by his engaging personality, laced with humor and humility. As an example, at the senior band's weekly Thursday evening rehearsal, Azzara began with a piece that the students knew (Quintology); discussed its harmonic underpinnings (Mixolydian mode); taught them an American folk song by ear, which had the same harmonic structure (Old Joe Clark); and finally tied it all up by having all 70+ students improvising to When the Saints Go Marching In. Because of teacher and administrative support and cooperation, the jazz band students were able to attend extended rehearsals with Azzara and benefit from someone who not only teaches jazz at the university level, but also plays in a well-known jazz quartet in the New York City area. In addition, music staff members had the chance to discuss K­8 music curriculum issues with Azzara, and how "improvisation" could play a meaningful role in the curriculum. These meetings were thought-provoking and practical, and included discussions centering around objectives, methods, and assessment techniques. Thanks should go to Debbie Dawson and members of the Carlisle School Association's Grants Committee and the members of the Carlisle Schools' Cultural Enrichment Committee for their funding support. Senior Band students also deserve mention for their citrus sale efforts during the past five weeks, since most of these profits went directly toward funding Azzara's visit. ...more

At a meeting on January 8, the Carlisle School Association (CSA) reviewed the first half of the school year. The board noted with satisfaction a number of positive trends: ...more

2002 The Carlisle Mosquito