Greetings to the Monty Tech Community,
On behalf of our entire faculty, staff and administration, I want to welcome all students, parents, guardians and families to the start of the 2023-2024 school year!!
I want to begin with the hope that everyone had an enjoyable, restful and safe summer vacation. It may not have seemed like it, but we had almost 11 weeks of time off this summer so I am certainly hopeful that everyone, at this point, is excited to return to Monty Tech.
As usual, while the break certainly results in a much quieter building, it does not mean that work is not getting done. Instead, I want to thank all the faculty, staff and students who were a part of our various summer offerings including the Rising Freshmen Academy, our grade 6-8 Summer Camps and our annual Summer School program, as each was fulfilling and provided a different group of students with effective learning opportunities. In addition, summer is the busy season for identifying and hiring new staff, and we cannot wait to introduce the newest faculty and staff members to the rest of the school community. Finally, as always, I must recognize the incredible efforts of our entire Custodial staff to scrub, clean and restore our facility. Their hard work continues to make our nearly 60-year-old building shine brightly.
Looking ahead to the 2023-2024 school year, there are many initiatives that I want to highlight as, in several cases, we will be seeking input from a variety of Monty Tech Community members.
To begin, if you are not aware, Monty Tech has forged a partnership with three of our sending districts – Fitchburg, Gardner and Narragansett Regional – to develop and launch a Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) After Dark program. These are programs that provide students who are enrolled in a traditional comprehensive high school access to vocational training.
Typically, these programs occur in late afternoon or evening because the students are taking their academic classes during the day. However, with the model that Monty Tech has developed with the support of our partnering districts, a total of 120 Juniors and Seniors from those districts will participate in training in House Carpentry, Electrical or Plumbing during the school day, as they will follow the A/B week schedule that we are used to and take their academic classes back at their sending schools. Most importantly, there will be no disruption to Monty Tech as the training will occur at a satellite campus one mile down the road at 270 Westminster Street.
For now, that program and additional adult workforce training will be on hold until fall, 2024. However, throughout this school year, Monty Tech students and their instructors will be renovating the former warehouse on Westminster Street into a modern-day training facility with all the current equipment that is being used in those trades. We look forward to sharing updates on our progress throughout the school year on this very exciting partnership project.
In addition, Monty Tech administrators, faculty and staff will be working on the following efforts throughout the 2023-2024 school year –
- Following the completion of a campus-wide safety and security study, Monty Tech will be revising and updating its School-wide Safety and Security Plan. This will include making physical changes around our campus, introducing new training and reporting methods and fostering our collaborative efforts with local first responders.
- In response to the Community Survey results that I received in association with last year’s Superintendent’s Entry Report, Monty Tech will launch an effort to consider an update to the driving vision and Core Values of the school district. As shown below, the survey results from students, parents, community partners, teachers and staff spoke to a focus on the value of “Respect for one another”.
In support of that belief, Monty Tech instructional staff will be offered opportunities to participate in professional development that focuses on our school culture and how we may promote a culture of equity and understanding for all of our community members. Furthermore, during this school-year, a committee including a variety of our district’s stakeholders will meet to discuss what additional values we may want to identify as the values that shape what we concentrate on as we move forward.
With our ongoing goal of preparing our students to enter the workforce with all the skills necessary to succeed – including those work skills that go beyond the essential technical skills – Monty Tech will be developing a new resource in the form of a Professional Skills instructor. This teacher will collaborate with our vocational instructors to provide specific training opportunities around employability, entrepreneurship and digital literacy. This will further include specific instruction on how to succeed in the job seeking process including resume writing and interview skills.
These are just a sample of the initiatives that Monty Tech will be striving to introduce during the 2023-2024 school year and I can assure everyone that, as always, the faculty, staff and administration of Monty Tech will continue to identify, hone and introduce new methods and tools for instruction that will allow for our students to be ready to immediately pursue whatever post-graduate pathway they choose.
As our current year begins, I wish every member of our school community a wonderful 2023-2024 school year. I look forward to sharing more information about our newest achievements very soon!
Tom Browne, Superintendent-Director
Montachusett Regional Vocational Technical School District