5 ideas for generating better school district improvement plans

The Gateway Cities Journal

Gateway City educators returned to school following the winter break pinching themselves. Just before the holidays, Gov. Baker signed the Student Opportunity Act (SOA), a landmark bill that promises to deliver $1.4 billion annually in new state aid. Districts now have until April 1 to file spending plans with the state detailing how they will

Christmas in the City

The Gateway Cities Journal

Yesterday morning downtown Haverhill was bustling. People hustled in and out of buildings, dodging the frigid winter breeze. The storefronts were done up nicely for the holidays, but something twinkling brightly in the sky is what really drew the eye. This was no oversized tree wearing multicolored bulbs, or lighted wreaths dangling from telephone poles.

Regional Rail’s Visionary Dreamers

The Gateway Cities Journal

There’s an old Japanese proverb: Vision without planning is a dream, but planning without vision is a nightmare. We live the proverbial nightmare on the Bay State’s roads and public transit systems, but this week we got a signal that the future may be brighter. On Monday, the MBTA Financial Management Control Board (FMCB) passed five

Gateway City leaders testify before committees weighing neighborhood stabilization bill

The Gateway Cities Journal

Wednesday night’s unanimous House vote in favor of the Student Opportunity Act was a watershed moment. Gateway Cities owe a debt of gratitude to education committee chairs, Representative Alice Peisch and Senator Jason Lewis, who skillfully crafted this truly historic legislation and built buy-in among the membership of both branches. We will have much more

Cultivating allies in the business community with Early College expansion

The Gateway Cities Journal

Massachusetts’ state Senators gather under the golden dome for a historic floor debate on education funding today. The $1.5 billion Student Opportunity Act is a game-changer for Gateway City school districts, and a Massachusetts economy thirsting for skilled workers to replace aging Boomers. Today’s Globe records this moment as a debate about who gets what.

A guide to help Gateway City schools capitalize on a major opportunity

The Gateway Cities Journal

This morning Gateway City leaders received hopeful news when the Joint Committee on Education unveiled a $1.5 billion plan to bring state aid in line with the resource needs of K-12 public school districts over a seven-year period. In the words of the State House News Service, Gateway Cities have been waiting 1,400 days for this announcement.

Reducing train fares to achieve equitable TOD

The Gateway Cities Journal

MassINC released a policy brief this week that is a “classic” in the sense that its main finding—many Gateway City residents can’t afford to ride commuter rail—is blatantly obvious. While this problem has been apparent for some time, we think now is the moment to seek a remedy. Transportation has risen to the top of the

Hearing that glorious swish

The Gateways Cities Journal

Down for nearly a decade, Gateway City real estate markets finally show signs of life. From Brockton to Fall River and Lynn to Worcester, private developers are unveiling plans for exactly the kind of mixed-use TOD projects these regional urban centers need to become 21st-century cities. However, as we’ve learned from previous real estate cycles,

Budgeting for the transformation of commuter rail

The Gateway Cities Journal

MassDOT’s Rail Vision team presented a long awaited set of scenarios for the transformation of commuter rail at a joint MBTA/MassDOT board meeting this week. Their analysis provides more information about what it would take to run trains every 15 minutes to urban centers all throughout the day. It also gave us a sense of

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