Valley Breeze

The Valley Breeze Pawtucket 11-20-2019

The Valley Breeze Newspapers serving the Northern Rhode Island towns of Cumberland, Lincoln, Woonsocket, Smithfield, North Smithfield, Pawtucket, North Providence, Scituate, Foster, and Glocester

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4 PAWTUCKET NOVEMBER 20-26, 2019 | VALLEY BREEZE | PAWTUCKET EDITION PAWTUCKET – For the past 20 years, Jane Blanchette has overseen the operation of daily after-school and summer Child Opportunity Zone pro- grams, and was recognized last month for her dedication to the city's schools. Blanchette, program manager for the 21st Century Community Learning Center Initiative at the Pawtucket School Department's Child Opportunity Zone, received the Award for Success in the Face of Adversity at the Lights On Afterschool summit, hosted by United Way of Rhode Island's Rhode Island Afterschool Network on Oct. 24. She was one of seven honorees. "I was pretty shocked," she told The Breeze. "I was not expecting it at all. When I realized what the category was, it made perfect sense." In two decades, the staff has never missed a session or deadline, and someone is always available to fill in when needed, she said. With recent school closings due to construction and the shuffling of students to other buildings, "we never used that as an excuse," she said. "I'm quite proud of the fact that we just managed to con- tinue on. Our staff continued on. … That's so rewarding when you think about this work. A lot of people quit after a short amount of time." Approximately 1,000 students at the district's 10 elementary schools are enrolled in the after-school academic enrichment program, according to Blanchette. The program runs every day for a few hours after school for three nine-week sessions during the school year. Blanchette oversees day-to-day management of the sites and sched- ules providers and personnel, she said. Students are provided a snack/ light meal by Aramark and receive homework help. If they don't have any homework left before time is up, Blanchette said they focus on reading, which is a fundamental in the district. Thanks to a district-wide push and after-school help, reading comprehen- sion has improved, particularly for 3rd-graders, Blanchette said. Staff have also helped students learn to speak English, she said, and try to help any way they can. "We do have some parents who don't speak the language enough to understand and help (their children) with their homework," she said. Students also participate in enrich- ment programs on subjects hosted by different people and groups including the Gamm Theatre, Festival Ballet Providence, and Save the Bay. "It's a whole variety of things," Blanchette said. "We want to expose children to things they wouldn't ordi- narily be exposed to." Agnes Little Elementary School, for example, has had a partnership with the R.I. Philharmonic Orchestra for the past four years, in which students receive intensive violin lessons for three afternoons. As a result, 27 stu- dents have auditioned and performed with the RI Philharmonic Youth Music Orchestra, Blanchette said. The violin program is a different model, and Blanchette said they are exploring other similar opportunities for students, including with theater, which can prepare younger students to get into the city's Jacqueline M. Walsh School for the Performing and Visual Arts. "We always thought kids should be exposed to as much as possible," she said. "The violin program demonstrat- ed clearly that focused attention on a skill will really have a life-changing outcome." Interim Supt. Cheryl McWilliams credited Blanchette with building the program to include a wide variety of opportunities for students including arts, music, crafts, STEM, cooking, physical activity programs and robot- ics, as well as creating great partner- ships with organizations. "She has a real passion and dedica- tion to ensuring our students have high quality extended learning oppor- tunities," McWilliams told The Breeze. The summer program, which serves between 700 and 800 students, runs for five weeks and includes field trips related to a theme, as well as meals, and focuses on reading and math skills, Blanchette said. Parents can enroll their children in the programs, but principals and teachers can also recommend par- ticular students who may need extra support. "It's not all fun and light," she said. "There are kids who really need extra help for whatever reason." Blanchette shared a story of a student who she worked with at Cunningham Elementary School who tracked her down years later to tell her he graduated from Tolman High School. "He realized somebody way back in elementary school cared about him," she said. "I think people really under- estimate how much of an impact you can have on a child." Blanchette, who has a degree in political science with a concentra- tion in public administration from Providence College and a paralegal certificate from Roger Williams University, said she ended up in the special education world after working for her late husband's law office. She began working for Pawtucket schools in 2000. Prior to that, she worked as a special education parent advocate for the Rhode Island Parent Info Network. The focus of the annual Lights On Afterschool summit was the 2019 Out-of-School Time Learning Report, funded by the Women United donor affinity group of United Way Rhode Island and the Rhode Island Foundation. Data showed that there are 34,704 Rhode Island students engaged in after-school learning, but another 37,471 who would participate in a program if one were available to them. Pawtucket is in the middle of a five- year grant, which is federally funded but managed through the state, Blanchette said. "We're pretty good for the next few years." Blanchette honored for work with after-school programming By MELANIE THIBEAULT Valley Breeze Staff Writer melanie@valleybreeze.com JANE BLANCHETTE ABOUT US The Valley Breeze is a locally owned newspaper Office location: 6 Blackstone Valley Place, Suite #204, Lincoln, RI 02865 Hours: 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays. Closed weekends and holidays. Call us: 401-334-9555 Fax: 401-334-9994 Online: www.valleybreeze.com READER SERVICES DO YOU HAVE A STORY IDEA? Contact Managing Editor Ethan Shorey at ethan@valleybreeze.com or call 401-334-9555, ext. 130. 24-hour, 7-day voice mail. ADVERTISING – Call your sales representative, or Director of Sales Jack Birolini at 401-334- 9555, ext. 141 or email: jack@valleybreeze.com CLASSIFIEDS – Place ads at valleybreeze.com, or call 401-334-9555 during office hours. NEWS BRIEFS AND CALENDAR EVENTS Let others know about events sponsored by your non-profit organization, church or school. • Deadline: Entertainment news is Friday at noon. All other news is Monday 3 p.m. • Submit: We prefer receiving news via e-mail. Send yours to news@valleybreeze.com. You may also fax or mail your item. Receipt does not guarantee publication. Event marketing by for- profit businesses requires paid advertising. DO YOU HAVE SOMETHING TO CELEBRATE? Share the good news of your births, engagements, weddings and anniversaries. This is a free service. Pictures will be returned upon request. • Get forms: Visit www.valleybreeze.com, click on "Celebrations" at left, and select a form; or call 401-334-9555; or stop by the office during business hours. OBITUARIES – Obituaries cost $90–$125. They are posted online immediately, and placed in the first available paper. Check with your funeral director for details. ARE YOU LOOKING FOR A PREVIOUSLY PUBLISHED STORY? All current stories remain free online for one week after print publication. Older stories are now archived online back to July 2001. We're sorry, but we have few back issues of papers in our offices and cannot provide free library services. • Online: Visit www.valleybreeze.com, and click on "Search The Breeze Archive." Use keywords to find old stories. Single stories cost $2.95 through our Newsbank partners. Multi-story packages, which provide lower costs per story, are also available. SUBSCRIPTIONS – The Valley Breeze may be delivered anywhere in the United States, in an envelope, by First Class mail only. The cost is $189 per year, or $4 per week. Phone 401-334-9555 for details. COPYRIGHTS – valleybreeze.com or its content may not be linked to any other Web site without the written permission of the publisher. News aggregators that solicit advertising may not link valleybreeze.com. Are you a Church, Scout group, spos team or School hosting a Pancake Breakfast, Cra Fair, Pasta Dinner or any other type of fund-raiser this season? You can buy an ad of this size for only $40! The ad will be in more than 8,000 papers. Deadline: Fridays at 3 p.m. Call 401-334-9555. Dial 0 for details. Prepayment is required. Adve•ise your Volunteer Organization's Fund-raiser on Calendar Pages On Friday, December 16, 2019 at 10:00 AM, at 846-848 Newport Ave., Pawtucket, RI, Fastcash Pawn & Checkcashers Inc., licensed check casher #20041631CC, will hold an Auction on all gold, diamonds, watches, electronics, tools, instruments, equipment and any other items that were not redeemed from pawn. If you would like more item detail's on any of the ticket numbers related to this auction, please go to www.pawnri.com/auctions and click on the correct auction date prior to the auction. The items being sold are the following ticket #'s: 31630, 37458, 39240, 45382, 49365, 51446, 52322, 54602, 55501, 60755, 66692, 68081, 68399, 70043, 70204, 71378, 72684, 73238, 76638, 76867, 77692, 78678, 80823, 82877, 83907, 85839, 86139, 87165, 87940, 89754, 90603, 90964, 91074, 91272, 92308, 93240, 93719, 94118, 94354, 94496, 97029, 100040, 100095, 100971, 102301, 103414, 103574, 103879, 103942, 104211, 104278, 105520, 105854, 106206, 107957, 111100, 112017, 114048, 114369, 115672, 115759, 115778, 115956, 116259, 117476, 119132, 119851, 120458, 120512, 120788, 121059, 121154, 122839, 122852, 122983, 123073, 123768, 124349, 124807, 124824, 124916, 125187, 126883, 126981, 127681, 128120, 128165, 128417, 128796, 128881, 128982, 129146, 129147, 129148, 130098, 130890, 131550, 132349, 132608, 133044, 134133, 134302, 135342, 135589, 135945, 136255, 136428, 136640, 136860, 136976, 137629, 137829, 137831, 137832, 137872, 137890, 138105, 138470, 138523, 138629, 139345, 139788, 139833, 140651, 140733, 140959, 141072, 141202, 141494, 141587, 141589, 141638, 141715, 142144, 142742, 143246, 144136, 144232, 144254, 144389, 144438, 144466, 144492, 144520, 144604, 144681, 145026, 145296, 145735, 145874, 146200, 146328, 146435, 147406, 147817, 147829, 148218, 148233, 148511, 148525, 148826, 148896, 148986, 149052, 149053, 149054, 149220, 149367, 149584, 150342, 150390, 150447, 150525, 150698, 150743, 150757, 150820, 150829, 150999, 151000, 151001, 151235, 151266, 151297, 151299, 151335, 151507, 151697, 151744, 151897, 151919, 151934, 152049, 152167, 152242, 152268, 152298, 152324, 152355, 152539, 152600, 152610, 152863, 152877, 153046, 153074, 153075, 153305, 153688, 153700, 153701, 153728, 153873, 153936, 153965, 154010, 154257, 154268, 154314, 154336, 154377, 154465, 154533, 154534, 154535, 154662, 154680, 154706, 154726, 154842, 154956, 155014, 155042, 155050, 155152, 155185, 155186, 155289, 155331, 155385, 155448, 155465, 155479, 155483, 155612, 155747, 155772, 155782, 156006, 156025, 156164, 156442, 156529, 156667, 156678, 157139, 157212, 157365, 157375, 157620, 157899, 157902, 158020, 158149, 158181, 158183, 158276, 158286, 158301, 158474, 158514, 158596, 158623, 158734, 158766, 158859, 158920, 158948, 159035, 159093, 159113, 159114, 159227, 159236, 159285, 159297, 159322, 159349, 159471, 159536, 159607, 159629, 159663, 159689, 159706, 159710, 159810, 159868, 159976, 159978, 160033, 160057, 160062, 160295, 160346, 160534, 160602, 160640, 160765, 160794, 160864, 161048, 161114, 161116, 161221, 161228, 161262, 161463, 161482, 161580, 161625, 161667, 161727, 161730, 161734, 161752, 161820, 161821, 161877, 161881, 161885, 161908, 161913, 161960, 161998, 162008, 162012, 162039, 162085, 162102, 162105, 162119, 162124, 162132, 162135, 162188, 162195, 162225, 162226, 162250, 162253, 162263, 162278, 162287, 162296, 162333, 162340, 162352, 162357, 162361, 162366, 162379, 162380, 162399, 162406, 162416, 162432, 162451, 162464, 162482, 162525, 162543, 162548, 162549, 162550, 162580, 162663, 162688, 162696, 162774, 162904, 163000, 163013, 163115, 163122, 164548, 164704, 164795, 164832, 164900, 165309, 165317, 165319, 165320, 165325, 165329, 165340, 165341, 165343, 165344, 165345, 165348, 165351, 165359, 165362, 165366, 165368, 165369, 165372, 165373, 165380, 165387, 165389, 165397, 165399, 165401, 165408, 165412, 165413, 165433, 165443, 165445, 165447, 165456, 165457, 165465, 165466, 165471, 165472, 165473, 165474, 165475, 165478, 165479, 165480, 165481, 165483, 165484, 165487, 165490, 165491, 165494, 165495, 165496, 165499, 165500, 165501, 165503, 165504, 165505, 165506, 165509, 165510, 165514, 165519, 165534, 165538, 165547, 165548, 165551, 165557, 165558, 165559, 165561, 165564, 165575, 165582, 165584, 165590, 165591, 165592, 165593, 165594, 165599, 165600, 165603, 165604, 165608, 165610, 165614, 165615, 165620, 165623, 165628, 165633, 165634, 165635, 165637, 165639, 165645, 165647, 165651, 165653, 165655, 165662, 165663, 165666, 165670, 165675, 165681, 165685, 165688, 165689, 165690, 165691, 165693, 165695, 165696, 165698, 165701, 165706, 165708, 165710, 165712, 165714, 165716, 165718, 165722, 165725, 165728, 165730, 165731, 165733, 165734, 165735, 165736, 165737, 165738, 165744, 165748, 165749, 165755, 165756, 165759, 165766, 165774, 165775, 165778, 165779, 165783, 165786, 165787, 165788, 165791, 165794, 165795, 165796, 165799, 165802, 165804, 165805, 165808, 165809, 165811, 165818, 165824, 165834, 165835, 165836, 165843, 165844, 165846, 165851, 165861, 165864, 165868, 165869, 165876, 165879, 165884, 165888, 165891, 165892, 165899, 165900, 165901, 165902, 165905, 165913, 165914, 165915, 165920, 165924, 165926, 165929, 165931, 165932, 165939, 165941, 165943, 165946, 165949, 165950, 165951, 165957, 165963, 165967, 165972, 165973, 165974, 165986, 165991, 165993, 165994, 165995, 166000, 166002, 166007, 166012, 166013, 166017, 166020, 166021, 166022, 166023, 166028, 166031, 166040, 166042, 166044, 166047, 166054, 166055, 166057, 166058, 166062, 166063, 166067, 166078, 166084, 166085, 166088, 166089, 166091, 166092, 166097, 166100, 166108, 166114, 166117, 166120, 166121, 166122, 166123, 166124, 166126, 166135, 166139, 166147, 166148, 166151, 166152, 166155, 166158, 166159, 166160, 166161, 166165, 166166, 166171, 166180, 166183, 166184, 166190, 166195, 166201, 166203, 166207, 166210, 166211, 166216, 166217, 166219, 166221, 166222, 166223, 166230, 166232, 166236, 166239, 166242, 166246, 166249, 166251, 166252, 166256, 166257, 166263, 166265, 166266, 166268, 166269, 166272, 166273, 166274, 166282, 166283, 166285, 166287, 166290, 166291, 166296, 166298, 166300, 166308, 166312, 166314, 166317, 166318, 166319, 166322 The Auction will be conducted by Bob Resnick of Max Pollack & Co., Auctioneers. Ltd. RI LIC # 6893

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