WILLIAMSTOWN -- The Mount Greylock School Committee on Thursday, June 18, formally accepted $450,000 from donors to Williams College to support innovative projects at the school over the coming two academic years. This is in addition to the $283,000 received for use over the last two academic years.
The bulk of the $738,000 given to the Williams College Fund for Mount Greylock has come from 20 Williams-related members of the Jeffrey family, who live throughout the U.S. They represent several generations of the extended family that shares as a common ancestor, Joseph A. Jeffrey, a founding partner in the 19th century of the business that became The Jeffrey Manufacturing Company.
Their contributions have been complemented by $27,500 raised from local donors, some of them affiliated with Williams, who welcomed the opportunity to invest in the school and to affirm the commitment to the community that the Jeffrey family has made.
"What a spectacular shot in the arm these funds are [to] our school," said Dr. Rose Ellis, superintendent. "We are stunned by the generosity of these donors and by the investment in our community that it represents. Since we could never thank them enough with words, we will honor their commitment by working hard to ensure that these funds are used to maximize growth and learning for all students at Mount Greylock."
Teachers and administrators submit proposals for use of these funds.
Spending guidelines are set by a fund Steering Committee, made up of members of the school, the college and the community. Proposals from faculty are vetted by a Program Committee made up of school teachers and administrators.
In its first two years, the fund has supported a wide variety of projects.These include the development of a total school needs assessment, guided by the International Center for Leadership in Education; instructional development in math and science; new programs in literacy; an expansion of experiential and independent learning opportunities; the introduction of critical languages such as Mandarin and Italian; and a significant addition of learning technology.
All of this work supports the school’s overall move toward learning that, in addition to being rigorous, is individualized, project-based and self-paced.
"I, too, am moved by the generosity of the Jeffrey family and local donors and am encouraged by the positive effects it is having, and will have for many years, on students at the school," said Williams President Adam Falk.
"The entire community, including the college, is the beneficiary as Mount Greylock works toward reclaiming its historic legacy as a model school.
"We’re grateful to all, including donors, teachers, administrators, School Committee members, and members of the college and community, who are partnering to bring this about. It’s truly a joint effort."