HOPE — Sweet Tree Arts and the Sweetland School are expanding the school and developing a new middle school program with the support of the Hope community, and have found a new classroom space in the community room at the Hope Town Office.
Lindsay Pinchbeck, founder and director of Sweet Tree Arts and Sweetland School said in a news release: “We love knowing that our middle schoolers can be close to the main campus in the heart of Hope but also have their own ‘home space’. This is a wonderful opportunity to partner with our town. I have been blown away by the support and how welcoming the Hope Town Office, Select Board and Hope Library have been to Sweetland School students, staff and families. We are extremely appreciative to be able to expand slowly with the help of our local community.”
The Sweet Tree Arts center is well established as a community partner and strives to connect whenever possible to individuals and organizations in Hope and beyond to the greater community, according to Sweet Tree, in a news release.
Conversations are already underway on how to involve the students in learning about what goes on at the town office. Hope native, Amy Gertner is Sweetland Middle School’s head teacher and a member of the Hope Library Board. She is considering community service ideas to help support the library that would involve the middle school students. Those ideas would develop around how to engage the learners in government including helping with voting day.
“I am so grateful and excited about our new learning space,” said said. “I believe it will provide many opportunities for the middle schoolers to engage with the greater Hope community. It’s my goal to create time and space for strong relationships between our students and the people in our community, what better place to start than our own town office building?”
Chair of the board of selectmen, Brian Powers, said, in the release: “Sweet Tree has been a good steward to the town since they’ve been there. We wanted to reciprocate and it truly makes me happy that a building that was built as a school is now helping to serve in that capacity again.”
Once the school year is in full swing the Sweetland Middle School staff will be turning to the students to learn what questions they have and brainstorm ideas about how to partner their learning with the town of Hope.