Dear Parents, Students and Community Members,
The 2017-2018 school year brought tremendous change to Monty Tech. While our students and instructors continued to demonstrate excellence in the classrooms and on the job site, several new initiatives and programs were introduced, infusing new energy and excitement across the district.
In October 2017, the school received approval for its 21stvocational-technical training program, Veterinary Science, and soon thereafter accepted a class of 22 outstanding young students into this new and exciting program. In December 2017, the school hosted, for the first time ever, the Wreaths Across America escort convoy. After our faculty and students welcomed the convoy, a touching ceremony was held, recognizing American Gold Star mothers, families, and spouses. It was a day our students and staff will never forgot. In February 2018, more than 50 students and 10 chaperones traveled to Wharton, Texas to help rebuild homes lost during Hurricane Harvey. The school’s Marine Corps JROTC program raised more than fifty thousand dollars, and received matching funds from the United States Marine Corps to support this community service project. While these students may be known for their outstanding leadership and community service efforts across North Central Massachusetts, their dedication to, and accomplishments during this project demonstrate a deeper commitment to civic engagement and community service than ever before. In May, we concluded the school’s first–ever MCAS Review Camp, serving approximately 100 students. Students and staff worked closely together to identify challenging concepts in English, Mathematics and Science, and through close instruction and a variety of instructional methods, every student reached new levels of success. It is a model that will be replicated in the coming year.
That is what is so exciting about education – every year is new and different. While honoring the traditions and successes that have come before, it’s so important to look ahead, introduce new ideas, encourage creative solutions, and seek ways to improve programs across the school. And so, to ensure that the 2018-2019 school year continues in this tradition, I am delighted to announce that when our students return in a few short weeks, they will be met with renovated instructional spaces, new lessons developed by hardworking teachers who have spent their summer months writing new curriculum, updated technology in their vocational programs, and talented, new instructors who are eager to share their expertise with each and every student.
Students in the school’s Graphic Communications and Health Occupations programs will see that their instructional spaces have been redesigned to replicate industry standards. With additional storage, a more open floor plan, and increased efficiency in its design, these new vocational instructional spaces are intended to support and encourage student learning and exploration.
Having been the recipient of a $500,000 Skills Capital Grant, we were able to purchase advanced technology and instructional materials to create two new, state-of-the-art learning laboratories, benefitting the school’s Electrical and CAD Drafting & Design programs. The A.R.M. (Automation, Robotics, and Mechatronics) Lab and an Advanced Rapid Fabrication Lab will include a variety of equipment and technology, used to train students interested in careers in advanced manufacturing and automation. Monty Tech students will now be trained in electronic system control and fabrication, and as a result, will be better prepared to fill positions at such as Manufacturing Technicians, Robotics Technicians, Automation Technicians, Manufacturing Production Technicians, Moldmakers, Drafters, and CNC Machinists at local corporations.
Throughout the summer, so many teachers have been working to develop new lessons, but one teacher’s dedication to his craft and commitment to his students led him to travel to the West coast, where he completed 4 weeks of training in Project Lead the Way Biomedical Sciences. As a result, two new courses will be offered to Monty Tech students this Fall, Principles of Biomedical Science and Human Body Systems. These courses are expected to engage students in a variety of hands-on learning opportunities, in a newly renovated laboratory environment that replicates the trending biomedical industry. Students will be trained in the safe and effective use of the same tools that professionals in hospitals and laboratories are currently using, and will work together to find solutions to real-world problems, by analyzing medical histories, reading and interpreting autopsy reports, and understanding basic biology and human physiology.
Finally, for two years, more than one hundred students and twenty staff members have worked to build a 7,500 sq. ft. facility on our campus, housing the new Veterinary Science training program and community clinic. The building is now complete, and students enrolled in the Veterinary Science program will work and learn in this beautiful, state-of-the-art facility, thanks to their hard work and the continued generosity and support of countless community members, state and local officials, and local philanthropists. Watching the foundation being poured, the walls and roof going up, and putting the finishing touches in place has truly been an honor, and a highlight of my years in education. While I am a life-long believer that a high-quality education makes a difference in the lives of our students, watching our talented instructors work with their students, sharing their skills and expertise, and carefully observing students take the lead in this building project has only affirmed this belief. This building is proof that a Monty Tech education is measured by more than just a paper and pen. A Monty Tech education is demonstrated in the work ethic of our students, in the technical skills they possess, and the commitment to community service they reflect in their daily lives.
I am honored to lead this fine district, and look forward to 2018-2019, knowing the best is yet to come.
Sheila M. Harrity, Ed.D.