What’s new with the Hastings PTO

Principal’s Letter

View this week’s message from Hastings Principal Louise Lipsitz.

December 4 Vote Information

It’s less than three weeks until we vote YES! to allow the town to borrow money to fund construction of a new Hastings, Lexington Children’s Place, and fire station. Please see www.yes4lex.org for more information on each of the three projects.

There is an active NO campaign, making the argument that we do not need to take out loans in order to fund the construction – they claim the town has been poorly managed and should be saving money in other ways that would be sufficient to pay for the projects. These claims are NOT true.

  1. The “savings” are all theoretical. We can’t fund buildings on theories. If we take out the loans now and it turns out that some of these ideas are feasible and do save money, then they will help reduce the loan payments and taxes as we go forward.
  2. The claim that the town has been poorly managed is not supported by fact. In the last five years, the town has saved $28M in the capital stabilization fund that will be used to offset the tax increases from taking on this debt.
  3. These same claims have been made, studied, and rejected by the town for many years. In fact, two years ago during the last debt exclusion, many of the same ideas were suggested – however, proponents have not attended a single school committee meeting or Board of Selectman meeting to try and work toward any of the changes they suggest since then.

Please vote YES! for the debt exclusion. If there are particular proposals made by the no campaign that you think have merit, there are processes in place in the town (for those that are under town control) by which to turn them into reality – witness Lin Jensen and the Green team’s efforts and successes to work through the school committee and other stake holders to change school lunches to be more environmentally friendly. Again, note that many of these ideas were raised during the last debt exclusion campaign, yet nobody believed in them enough to put any effort toward implementing them once the debt exclusion vote was over.

If the outcome of the vote is a NO, the projects will likely not move forward in their current form. We would be looking at renovating Hastings rather than building new, at a cost of $11M to bring the building up to code, not including the cost of replacing the modulars. If you don’t think replacing Hastings is necessary, please watch Louise’s comments on the needs (part 1, part 2).

Volunteer 1-2 Hours to Show Your Support for Hastings!!!

Hastings is by far the biggest community impacted by the proposed capital projects. We need to be visible around town showing our support in order for these projects to be funded. Please volunteer just one hour of your time over the next few weeks to make this happen!!! If every Hastings family gave an hour, we’d be in great shape!!

  1. Holding signs around town
  2. Calling Lexington neighbors to inform them about the vote
  3. Like the yes4lex facebook page and commit to voting!

Hastings, Lexington Children’s Place, Fire Station Tours

Date: Thursday, November 16
Time: Fire station: 9pm – 11am Location: 45 Bedford St. (also on Sunday Nov. 19 12 – 1 pm)
Time: LCP: 4pm – 5:30pm, tours on the half-hour Location: 328 Lowell St.
Time: Hastings: 6:30pm – 8:30pm, tours on the half-hour Location: 7 Crosby Rd.

Not sure why we need to replace Hastings, LCP, or the fire station? The leaders at each location will host tours so that Lexington citizens can see the state of the facilities for themselves. If you have questions about any of these three buildings, please make time to visit. And please share with friends and neighbors who might like to see the facilities.

Retake Day – School Pictures

Date: Friday, November 17, 2017
Time: throughout day
Location: inside Hastings

Please mark your calendars. If you are not completely satisfied with your portrait and would like to try again, you have the opportunity for a free retake. Picture Retake Day is Friday, November 17th. Please return the entire, undamaged portrait package to the photographer on Retake Day. Write any suggestions for the photographer on a piece of paper so it shows through the envelope window. Retake Day is rain or shine. Portraits are done inside.

Square 1 Art Fundraiser

Date: Orders due November 17

All Hastings students have received a personalized Square 1 Art catalog showcasing his or her artwork, the available products, and ordering instructions. Hastings receives a percentage of all sales and that percentage increases as our participation percentage increases! Please consider ordering for holiday gifts. All products will be delivered to the school (free shipping) and will go home in your child’s backpack on Monday, December 18th.

 Learning Express discount and donation

Date: November 13 – 17
Time: store hours
Location: Learning Express, 168 Great Road, Bedford, MA (in the Whole Foods shopping plaza)

Shop and Learning Express in Bedford and get 10% off your purchase and Learning Express will give 10% back to Hastings! Learning Express is a wonderful store for toys, books, and learning games for a wide range of ages! This is an opportunity to get some holiday or birthday shopping done while saving money and donating back to Hastings. Print out the flyer and present at check out.

SCHOOL COMMITTEE AND OTHER UPDATES

If you’d like to stay updated on school building projects and other community updates (sports teams, club registration as well as community posts), please join the Hastings Families Google Group at http://bit.ly/HastingsFamilies.

School Committee Meetings

Date: Tuesday, November 28, 2017
Time: 7:00 pm
Location: Selectman’s Meeting Room, 1625 Massachusetts Avenue.