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After 29 Years, Stapleton Elementary After School Program Not Renewed

With school starting at the end of August, working parents are unhappy the program was not renewed and that they have no information on the new vendor or what will be available for their children, as an after-school program.

Framingham Patch photo
Framingham Patch photo
After 29 years as the after-school program at Stapleton Elementary School, the Framingham Extended Day Program Inc. had its contract not renewed by the Framingham Public Schools.

The Framingham Extended Day Program Inc. sent letters to parents last week. 

"It is with deep regret that I need to inform you that the Framingham Extended Day's contract ha snot been renewed," wrote director Betsy Gibson. The school system has "decided to go with a different vendor, one they feel better meet the need of the Stapleton community. I have not yet been notified by the town as to who the new vendor will be but the head of the Resource & Development Joseph Corazinni informed me that he will be setting up a meeting with a representative from the new program and Stapleton parents."

The parents have yet to hear from the Framingham Public Schools on what options will be available to them in August when the school re-opens.

"I am completely outraged by this decision by the school board (or whomever made it). Seems that it was handled very poorly with no thought to the kids\parents\staff of the current programs taken into account. It is very upsetting because it is such a good program - with great staff. My kids absolutely love it and I have not heard of any complaints from other people that attend. I do not believe this decision is in the best interest of our children or that anything but money was a consideration," wrote parent Melanie Steck to Framingham Patch.

Another parent Jackie DiDuca told Patch said it is July 15 and we have no information on the new program and school starts on August 27.

"This is so frustrating," she said.

"I have enjoyed working for the last 29 years with all of the many children and families who I had the pleasure to get to know through the Framingham Extended Day program," wrote Gibson to Stapleton families. "It is my hope that the staff and I have enriched the lives of these many Framingham children in a positive and successful way; they have certainly enriched our lives."

Gibson wrote that "any change is always difficult. I recommend that you face this challenge with your children in an optimistic and positive way."

She told parents that she would be returning their registration fees and deposits as soon as possible.

Steck said the program, which has been at Stapleton for almost three decades, is "fantastic."

She said it "is a very reasonably priced non-profit program run by a very experienced director and staff of teachers. ... They offer many great programs for kids to choose from giving them a more well-rounded education."

She said students in the program participate in cooking classes, art projects and get plenty of gym time.

"It has been a great supplement to the education they receive at Stapleton. It also provides piece of mind for my husband and I while we have to work until 6 p.m. every day. Having it directly at the school is a huge plus with not needing to worry about getting them transportation to another place and if they got there or not," she told Patch.

Steck said the worst part about the change in after-school programs, is that "we as parents, once again, were not even consulted on this change or even notified about it by the school system."

Michael DiDuca July 17, 2014 at 11:45 AM
Steve I just have to say as a parent who is directly affected by this I find your comments to be counter productive. As I pay for this out of my pocket I feel that I should have some say as to the program my child is enrolled in. If you had taken the time to understand the situation instead of just shooting off your mouth with your skewed views we might actually get something done.
Steve Elias July 17, 2014 at 12:13 PM
Michael, I understand and apologized for that misunderstanding. Can you beat a dead horse more than once?.
Susan Petroni July 17, 2014 at 04:41 PM
Framingham Public Schools issued a press release at 4:25 p.m. today -- you can read it at this link: http://framingham.patch.com/groups/schools/p/framingham-schools-issues-press-release-on-afterschool-contracts
Susan Petroni July 17, 2014 at 04:41 PM
FYI -- http://framingham.patch.com/groups/schools/p/after-a-decade-running-afterschool-care-at-brophy-metrowest-ymca-contract-now-renewed


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