Edgartown School kindergarten class size will increase

Edgartown School kindergarten class size will increase

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Edgartown plans to hire a new kindergarten teacher because of an expected increase in enrollment. — File photo by Ralph Stewart

Edgartown selectmen agreed Monday to support hiring an additional Edgartown School kindergarten teacher for the 2014-2015 school year. Edgartown School principal John Stevens told selectmen at their regular Monday meeting that the school planned on 38 or 39 new kindergarten students based on earlier projections, but 46 students are already registered, and that number could grow through the summer.

“We don’t know much about these kids, except 25 percent are bilingual kids, students that aren’t very proficient in English that will need specialized services,” Mr. Stevens said. “I’m a believer in early intervention. It’s very important for kids this age to get a solid foundation.”

Mr. Stevens said he met with the Edgartown financial advisory board earlier, and received their support to hire a new teacher.

In order to hire the teacher before the school year begins the salary, estimated at $40,000, will be paid from the school’s existing salary account. If the school needs more than the amount budgeted for salaries in the current year, it will ask voters to approve an increase or a transfer at a special town meeting next April.

Also Monday, selectmen approved a change in the alcohol license for The Grill on Main that will allow the Upper Main Street restaurant to serve alcohol on its newly constructed outdoor patios.

Selectmen agreed to extend the usual hours of all bars and restaurants on Friday, July Fourth, and Saturday, July 5. On those two evenings, last call will be at 1:30 am, and all patrons must be out of the establishments by 2 am.

In her report to selectmen, town administrator Pam Dolby said she has been inundated with complaints about a new stop sign at the intersection of Cooke Street and South Water Street, installed because of concern from residents in the area.

“People do not like the new stop sign,” she said. “Everybody’s been blowing through, and not understanding why it’s there.”

Ms. Dolby said the highway department will put some temporary street markings at the intersection to alert motorists, then reassess the decision to install the new stop sign in a couple of weeks.