WEEK AHEAD: Schafer to retire; internet safety speaker; nomination papers available; Green Wave sports and meeting schedules

Sometimes meeting agendas are dry and uninformative. And sometimes they reveal a big piece of news.

The agenda for this week’s School Committee meeting has a big piece of news: longtime Superintendent Peter Schafer will be retiring next summer after the 2023-2024 school year.

There’s been whispers for a while that Schafer was nearing the end of his career. But it will apparantly be made official Tuesday. His tenure as superintendent includes navigating through budget cuts, failed override votes, the construction of a new middle/high school, the closure of two elementary schools, a resurgent school district, a global pandemic, and culture war skirmishes.

“Mr. Schafer will have given over 25 years of his career to the Abington Public Schools upon his retirement in June 2024,” said School Committee Chairman Chris Coyle. “He has helped navigate a [high school] that had talk of losing accreditation to [achieving] Blue Ribbon status. His leadership has guided Abington students and staff through numerous tragedies, and a global pandemic. His main objective, through every decision he makes, is to do what he feels is in the best interest of APS. I know that will continue for these next 17 months as well.”

School Committee Member Danielle Grafton echoed Coyle’s praise.

“It has been an honor and a privilege to work with Peter Schafer. He has poured his heart and soul into the education of Abington’s students, always putting what is best for them FIRST,” she said. “He made every decision asking ‘Is this in the best interest of the kids?’ We will miss his leadership but his retirement is well deserved and we wish him happiness and calm, peaceful days doing everything he has put on hold while taking care of our kids and families.”

Members of the school community may have more to add at Tuesday’s School Committee meeting. Coyle said during the meeting he will outline the procedural steps to start searching for a replacement.

ST. PATRICK’S DAY PARADE COMMITTEE BEFORE SELECTMEN MONDAY

The committee that organizes the annual St. Patrick’s Day parade will appear before selectmen Monday night to ask permission to hold the popular parade on Sunday, March 19 at 1 p.m. The parade starts in Abington Center and makes its way down Washington Street to Adams and into North Abington Center. The committee is asking permission to use the former Center and North school properties to park participant buses. The board meets Monday night at 6:30 p.m.

HOUSING TRUST DISCUSSING POSSIBLE SITES FOR HABITAT PROJECTS

Habitat for Humanity is eyeing Abington as the site for a couple possible projects. The Affordable Housing Trust Committee will be discussing this at their meeting Monday night. One idea being considered is to locate a couple units along Gliniewicz Way across from the existing senior housing complex. Habitat is also interested in rehabilitating a home on the corner of Plymouth Street and Melvern Road. The committee meets Monday night at 5:30 p.m.

INTERNET SAFETY SPEAKER THIS WEEK IN ABINGTON

Katie Greer, a digital health and safety expert, will be speaking to Abington parents this Thursday. She will be discussing latest tech trends, privacy settings, ages kids get smartphones, and advice for having conversations with children about online safety. The event starts at 7 p.m. at the Middle/High School Auditorium and is free. It is being funded partly through a grant from Abington Education Association and Abington COPES.

NOMINATION PAPERS FOR TOWN ELECTIONS ARE AVAILABLE

Anyone interested in running for town office this spring can pick up nomination papers at the Town Clerk’s Office.

So far three people have taken out papers for the two open School Committee seats: incumbents Chris Coyle and Wendy Happel, as well as Nicole Emery. Town Clerk Leanne Adams and Town Moderator Shawn Reilly have also taken our papers to run again. There are two seats up on the Board of Selectmen this year, but so far only incumbent Alex Bezanson has taken out papers. Recently appointed Water Commissioner William Cormier will be running to complete the term. And incumbent Library Trustee Barbara McLaughlin has also taken our papers.

SPRING SPORTS INFORMATION SESSION THIS WEEK

Sure it’s snowing out, but that doesn’t mean spring sports aren’t right around the corner. Informational meetings for spring sports will be held this week for students in grades 9-12. Ultimate frisbee will, meet Tuesday at 2 p.m. in Room 2218. On Wednesday, baseball will meet in Room 2213, boys lacrosse in the seminar room, and tennis in Room 1216, all at 2 p.m. Girls track will meet Wednesday at 2:30 p.m. in Room 2127; boys track will meet at 2:30 p.m. in Room 2104. At 3 p.m. softball will meet in the cafeteria. And at 3:15 p.m., girls lacrosse will meet in Room 1218.


GREEN WAVE ATHLETICS

BOYS HOCKEY

Varsity

Wednesday, 7:50 p.m. vs. Cohasset, Rockland Ice Rink

Saturday, 3:40 p.m. @ Norwell, Bog Ice Rink

GIRLS HOCKEY (w/Norwell HS)

Wednesday, 6:40 p.m., vs. Hanover, The Bog, Kingston

Saturday, 3:50 p.m., @ Whitman-Hanson, Rockland Ice Rink

BOYS BASKETBALL

Varsity

Tuesday, 6:30 p.m. @ Carver

Friday, 6 p.m. vs. Middleborough 

J.V.

Tuesday, 5 p.m. @ Carver

Friday, 5 p.m. vs. Middleborough

Freshmen

Tuesday, 3:30 p.m. @ Carver

Friday 3:30 p.m. vs. Middleborough

GIRLS BASKETBALL

Varsity

Tuesday, 6:30 p.m. vs. Carver

Friday, 6:30 p.m. @ Middleborough

J.V.

Tuesday, 5 p.m. vs. Carver

Friday 5 p.m. @ Middleborough


MEETING SCHEDULE

MONDAY

Affordable Housing Trust Fund Committee, 5:30 p.m., Town Hall. Agenda includes discussions about property off Gliniewicz Way, a request by South Shore Habitat for Humanity, and the fund’s annual CPA request.

Board of Selectmen, 6:30 p.m., Town Hall. Agenda includes a moment of silence for Thomas Couite, a commercial license transfer at 1 Oak Street, updates from the Veterans Agent, Board of Health, and Police Department, and a request to hold a parade on March 19.

TUESDAY

Board of Sewer Commissioners, 6 p.m., Sewer Department. Agenda includes drain layers license approvals, and discussion about a project at 176 Wales Street.

Conservation Commission, 6:30 p.m., Town Hall. Agenda includes an enforcement order for 833 Washington Street, and possible revisions to the town’s conservation bylaws.

School Committee, 7 p.m., M/HS Library. Agenda includes a discussion about the search process for a new superintendent, updates from the social studies/business and science/technology department heads, and a report from the high school principal about course offerings for next year.

WEDNESDAY

Finance Committee, 7 p.m., Town Hall. Agenda includes reviews of the proposed budget for Abington School Department, and South Shore Regional Vocational High School

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