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Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Some days I really have nothing much to report, but today I have good news.  Geri Pelok let me know this morning we have a pair of loons nesting on the platform.  I heard them making a big fuss over something yesterday and worried they might be in trouble.  Now I'm thinking they were probably celebrating - perhaps Mama Loon had just laid another egg.  Or she might have been scolding her mate for not helping enough with the spring cleaning and rebuilding their nest.  It's good to know there will be another Joe's Pond Loon Family to watch this summer.  Thanks to Geri for keeping an eye on them for us.

I also had a nice note from a reader in Greensboro about hummingbirds.  I had mentioned that we haven't seen any here yet, but she told me hers were back about the normal time, May 11.  She also told me they don't depend totally on nectar from flowers or sweetened water from our feeders, but eat insects, as well.  That's good news - I hope they like black flies!  I've reminded Fred to get the feeder out, so hopefully we'll be seeing some within the next few days.  I'm pretty sure they are here - I just haven't seen or heard them.  On the other hand, I've heard bumble bees and sometimes if I'm not paying attention, the bees turn out to be hummers.

Our deck is on hold for a few days.  Our carpenter is having problems with his back and has to lay low, literally, for a few more days.  With the weather turning wet again later this week, he will likely get a longer rest than needed, but we're ok with that - we know a bit about back problems.  

Walden is voting today on forming a new school district with Barnet and Waterford.  It will be interesting to see how that goes.  None of these three towns have high schools, so have that in common.  On the surface it seems it would be a district within a district or two,  and that would seem to be inefficient in some ways, but these days anything is possible, I guess.  Years ago school districts were way less complicated.  There were some early requirements set up by federal or state government, but over time there have been increasing regulations set up for schools, and rural communities have struggled to keep up.  

Cabot School is looking at a very different change that would mean merging their high school with Danville and Twinfield (Marshfield and Plainfield).  Any community loses a lot when their school closes.  In this case Cabot's K-8 school would remain undisturbed, but closing the high school that has been serving the community for 100 years is a difficult decision.  There might be some tax advantage, but the way things usually work out, that would probably diminish in short order.  The real question is whether students would be better off in the larger school environment.  Voters will need to decide, and soon.

The first high school in Cabot was a two-year school initiated in 1908.  In 1916 it became a four-year secondary school graduating the first class in 1920.  Not many students went on to college back then.  Cabot was primarily a farm community and young men continued that tradition.  Young women became nurses, secretaries or teachers, or married close to home.  That has changed radically and some graduating classes in recent years have had 100% go on to college or some other higher education.  

We've all heard that "history repeats itself."  I can't help wondering if that will happen in education - will there someday be some sort of "pod" facilities equipped with automated technology that could follow the concentration and needs of the populace?  Like one-room schools on steroids . . . one teacher supported by robots, perhaps?


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