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Editorial: A city in upheaval | Opinion |

A Message from Jeanne Flora Boutilier


Hello Peruvian Alumni! The class of 78 is proud to announce that we will be having a 40 year reunion on the weekend of September 21st. We are planning an event on the 21st and on the 22nd and currently working on details. Just wanted to get the dates out there now so people that need to travel from afar have time to get plane tickets. We have had a lot of interest in this and think we’re going to have a really good turn out! The weekend is still being planned but we will be tentatively at the Plattsburgh Brewing Company on Friday night for a casual meet and greet. Saturday plans are still being discussed but we do know that we will be having dinner at Livingood’s Restaurant and Brewery on Saturday night! If there’s a home football game that weekend we might be able to add something there as well. The important thing at this point is to get an idea of who plans on coming, and getting contact information. Please pass this on and if you plan on coming please get me your email information as well as current city and state. We will be working from a group email with details as well as on FB to ensure everybody that wants to come gets the message 🙂 You can email me at call me, text me at 615-653-2500, or send me a FB message on Jeanne Flora Boutilier. There’s a great group of women in Peru doing all the legwork, I’m just the communications liaison. I just felt like I needed a title😄. Please plan on attending if you can and watch this site for more information. I will be posting to other Peru sites as well.

A Message From North Country Mission of Hope Executive Director Sr. Debbie Blow

Good morning everyone,

Over the next 3-4 days, various groups will be arriving in Nicaragua for Mission # 71.
So, this will be very short and very sweet!
1.  Applications are due for July Mission no later than March 1st.  Can be found on our website at
2.  Daily info during Mission trips:  As many of you know, we will be sharing our daily briefs with you during the Mission trip, beginning late Tuesday if all goes well and we have power and/or internet in Nica.  In advance, I will thank Bonnie Black who will be tasked with compiling the bulk of our daily feedback and activities.  I will also share info and add to that log some of what Carol H and I will be involved with daily, since our tasks often take us off site for meetings, etc.
Everyone is getting very excited and a little anxious, of course.
And then, there’s me…who gets VERY anxious about flying.  So, ask me what I thought when I saw the news clip about the plane losing its engine cover this past week on its way to Honolulu?!!!
Not to mention the immense responsibility I always feel about taking 47 people on a Mission trip to a developing country.  Stay tuned and keep us in your prayers.  I’m sure we will have some wonderful and some sad experiences to share in the days ahead.
3.  Set the date aside:  Mother’s Day is Sunday, March 13th.  The Lyon Mountain K of C (here in Northern New York) will be hosting another delicious Mother’s Day Brunch with all proceeds coming to the Mission of Hope.  Details to come.
4.  AMAZON SMILE:  In the 4th quarter of 2017, we received over $110 FREE money because folks go to Amazon Smile and list us as their charity when shopping at Amazon.  Imagine how much we could make if everyone who used Amazon, took a couple minutes to list us as their charity of choice?
5.  Prayers please:  For all impacted by another senseless and violent tragedy in Parkland, Florida.  Prayers also for all who are dealing with health or addiction issues, with loss of loved ones and so much more.
Thought for the Week:     I have a Mission…and you do, too!
Blessed John Henry Newman once said:
“God has created me to do some special service.
  God has committed some work to me which has not been committed to another.
   I have a Mission!”
Indeed, each and every one of us has a Mission.  We spend a lifetime growing into the fullness of understanding exactly what it is that is being asked of each of us.
So, as you go about your life this week and in the weeks ahead, take a moment or two and reflect on what you believe it is that is being asked of you by the Divine in your life.
And I do know one thing…we all have a mission…and we all are asked to live and be HOPE, no matter what is being asked of us.
So, live and be Hope this week!

Sr. Debbie Blow, OP
Executive Director
North Country Mission of Hope
3452 Route 22

Peru, NY 12972
Cell: 518-570-5443

Racist SnapChat spurs campus protests | News |

Town of Peru Department Head Reports For January

United Way Reaches Campaign Goal

United Way of the Adirondack Region, Inc. has met the 2018 campaign goal of $725,000. The annual campaign is conducted primarily during the fall months and concludes in February of each year. This year’s campaign raised a total of $725,272.00 which includes proceeds from special events and projections of pending results. Todd McCarthy, Owner of Lenny’s Shoe and Apparel and United Way Board Member, served as the Campaign Chair this year. He said “we are so delighted to deliver this exciting news to our three county region. It is once again a testament to the generosity and caring nature of the North Country. It was very challenging this year and we are proud of what we have been able to achieve. Read more »

Adirondack String Fever to Feature Top Regional Musicians at the Grange Feb. 24 | Essex on Lake Champlain

Missing skier returning to Lake Placid – Sun Community News & Printing

Langley Questions Peru Town Court Arraignment Workload

Highlights of the Peru Town Board February 12, 2018 Meeting

Counselor Jim Langley expressed frustration that of the 114 arraignments conducted in Peru Town Court last year, 77 or 66% involved people arrested outside of the Town of Peru. Forty-one arraignments involved arrests in the Town of Plattsburgh (36%), 36 (31.5%) involved arrests in other towns and 37 (32.5%) involved arrests in Peru. He said, “It’s a duplication of work. Our ladies are having to spend their time to take care of other town’s stuff. Two years ago this was brought up. Last year it was brought up. It doesn’t seem to change.” Langley said that following arraignment the cases are transferred to the town where the crime was committed and that these towns receive any fine monies. Peru does not receive any reimbursement.

It appears that Peru’s town justices either make themselves more available or have more convenient court hours than do justices in the Town of Plattsburgh and other towns. Supervisor Brandy McDonald said he would contact Town of Plattsburgh Supervisor Michael Cashman to investigate the issue. Counselor Irwin added, “You’d think the Town of Plattsburgh taxpayers would take notice at some point.” (See 9 to 12 minute 45 second point in Peru Gazette video to view this discussion)

Plans for the latest Main Street Project are going to be available to the public at the Town Hall at the Peru Free Library and if possible on the town’s Website. A letter is also going to be sent to Main Street residents. Committee Chairman Adele Douglas pointed out that plans have to be finalized and approved by the Town Board in the very near future and that the work has to be accomplished by the end of the year. Another pubic information meeting will also be scheduled at the Town Hall. Counselor Melvin Irwin was concerned about the plan’s impact on the turn radius for trucks at the Stewart’s intersection. Douglas said she believed that portion of the plan was modified after the NYS Department of Transportation expressed its concerns.

The Board approved the purchase of a disaster recovery computer server from Northeastern Computer at a cost not to exceed $5,000 plus installation labor of $1,000 to $2,000. The server will serve as the town’s disaster recovery backup and as the server for Town Court. Funds for the server were included in the Court’s 2018 budget. $1,100 saved by not appointing a fifth council member will also be used for the server.

A workshop was scheduled for March 13, 2018 at 6 PM to discuss needed sewer system upgrades.

Highway Superintendent Michael Farrell reported that NYS Office of Emergency Management informed him that the Town is still being considered for some reimbursement for last April’s snowstorm expenses.

Peru School District engineers have approved Farrell’s plan to install drainage piping in the school’s catch basin. The School Board still needs to approve the installation. Farrell believes repairing the catch basin will reduce or eliminate Jenkins and Pleasant Street storm sewer overflows.

Farrell said four of his snowplows were down for repairs during last week’s snowstorm. Plowing was delayed but done. All trucks have been repaired.

Problems with Primelink’s phone service have been the past two Board meetings. Town Hall phones were inoperable several times in the past few days and the Peru Town Court building has experienced similar outages. Supervisor McDonald said he would contact Primelink.

The Board received a letter of thanks from the Babbie and Rural Farm Learning Museum for the Town’s $3,000 donation to the museum.

Crews for the movie Escape From Dannemora will be filming on the Rock Road, Laphams Mills Road and the Lyons Road at the end of March. More information will be forthcoming.

More donations have been made to the Sullivan Park skating rink-basketball court online fundraising campaign. As of Monday’s meeting the online total was $6,740.

The meeting adjourned at 7:26 PM.

Spaghetti Dinner – Everyone Welcome! 

PeruPeru Knights of Columbus Council 7273 spaghetti dinner, Saturday, February 17, St. Augustine’s Parish Center.  Regular & gluten-free spaghetti, salad, bread and a delicious dessert. 4:30 to 6:30 PM, $7.50 per person, $2.50 for children 6 to 12, free for children 5 and under. Take-outs available.  

Art Talk : The Life and Art of Jan Balet

Peru Free Library
Wednesday, February 28 at 4:00 pm
The Life and Art of Jan Balet will cover the fascinating story of Jan’s life, from his escape from Hitler’s army, through his days as a highly successful commercial artist, art director, and children’s book author and illustrator in New York, to his later years as a fine artist residing in Europe.  This lecture and slide presentation will be held in conjunction with an exhibition of Jan Balet’s artwork at SUNY Plattsburgh from 2/12/18 -3/16/18. The presenter, Marie Balet, is the wife of Jan’s only son.
Please join us for a rare look into this artist’s work and life.
Thank you.
Becky Pace
Peru Free Library

City OKs $500K Saranac Bridge grant – Sun Community News & Printing

Flood recovery money available | Local News |

‘Lost’ skier safe in Sacramento; contacted wife | News |

Search Continues For Missing Whiteface Skier – Around the Adirondack Region

Desperate dairy farmers given lifeline in federal budget – VTDigger

Assemblyman Jones’ Legislation to Provide Flood Relief for Underwood Estates Residents Passes Assembly

From the Office of Assemblyman Billy Jones

Assemblyman Billy Jones (D-Chateaugay) announced that legislation he sponsored to provide critical relief to flood victims living at Underwood Estates in Plattsburgh passed the Assembly (A.9814).

“The folks of Underwood Estates have seen their homes destroyed and are dealing with losses that feel insurmountable,” Jones said. “This legislation would help ensure they have the resources they need to recover in the face of devastation and begin to move forward.”

Currently, victims of flooding who live in a mobile home are only eligible to receive relief through the state’s Homes and Community Renewal Mobile and Manufactured Home Replacement Program if they own both the mobile home and the land it is placed on. Jones’ legislation would amend this oversight to allow residents who lease their land to be eligible to replace or repair their home.

The bill comes in response to recent flooding caused by an ice jam on the Saranac River that left southern parts of Plattsburgh, most notably in Underwood Estates, severely damaged. The flood displaced 70 families and left many homes completely destroyed.[1] Assemblyman Jones worked with Senator Little and the Executive to craft the new legislation after touring the affected communities.[2]

Cuomo introduces bill to crack down on ill-behaved prison staff – NY Daily News

State Encourages New Yorkers to Volunteer as Campground Ambassadors

The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) announced today the launch of a new Campground Ambassador program as part of the state’s Adventure NY initiative to connect more New Yorkers with the outdoors. Like other campground host programs, new volunteer Campground Ambassadors will assist DEC campground staff in welcoming and assisting the millions of visitors who vacation in the Adirondack and Catskill parks each year.

DEC is encouraging New Yorkers that are passionate about the outdoors to help introduce new campers to DEC facilities and other outdoor activities such as hiking and fishing. Ambassadors will also aid in connecting campers and day users to nature via environmentally themed activities and programming.

“Introducing new visitors to DEC’s facilities and activities like camping, fishing and hiking is an integral part of continuing the success of our campground program. Equally important is offering the best possible customer service experience for our returning customers,” Commissioner Basil Seggos said. “Campground Ambassadors will assist DEC staff on both fronts, ensuring our place as the destination in the Adirondacks and Catskills for building memories and connecting visitors to nature for generations to come.”

Ambassadors will serve a minimum of two, and a maximum of four weeks, between July 1st and Labor Day. In consideration for services provided, a campsite will be provided for the duration of their stay at one of the following participating locations:

Kenneth L. Wilson Campground
North South Lake Campground

Cranberry Lake Campground
Fish Creek Pond / Rollins Pond Campgrounds
Lewey Lake Campground
Moffitt Beach Campground
Nicks Lake Campground
Rogers Rock Campground

To view the full details of the Campground Ambassador program, including the application, please visit DEC’s website or call 518-457-2500 x1.

Applications must be received by March 30, 2018.

DEC operates 52 campgrounds and five day-use areas in the Adirondack and Catskill forest preserves. The summer camping season runs through the summer, with some facilities remaining open during fall foliage and hunting season.

Under Governor Cuomo’s Adventure NY initiative, DEC is making strategic investments to expand access to healthy, active outdoor recreation, connect more New Yorkers and visitors to nature and the outdoors, protect natural resources, and boost local economies. Read more about the Adventure NY initiative.

For more information on DEC-operated campgrounds, including a list of campgrounds and schedules, visit DEC’s website and go to the Camping link under the Outdoor Recreation section, or call DEC’s Bureau of Recreation at 518-457-2500. To make reservations at any of these camping facilities, call ReserveAmerica at 1-800-456-CAMP (2267) or visit ReserveAmerica’s website (leaves DEC website.)

Coming Events at Peru VFW Post 309 – All Are Welcome

What:  Thanks for the Memories Spaghetti Dinner
with “Just Jammin”    Only $8.00

When:  February 15, 2018
Dinner:  4 – 7 p.m. with Memories Slide Show
followed by “Just Jammin”   6 – 9 p.m.

Where:  Peru Memorial VFW
710 Pleasant St, Rt 22B
Peru, NY 12972

What:      “Just Jammin”
When:    Thursday, February 22, 2018        6 – p.m.
Where:    Peru Memorial VFW
710 Pleasant St, Rt 22B
Peru, NY 12972

Details:    A group of local musicians get together to “jam.”  They are always looking for others to join them.  Come join them, listen, dance and/or add your voice to their instruments. Items for a light supper available for purchase.  Kitchen and bar open at 5 p.m.

What:    4th Sunday Breakfast
When:    February 25 28, 2018        9 a.m. – Noon
Peru Memorial VFW
710 Pleasant St, Rt 22B
Peru, NY 12972

Details:  Bacon, scrambled eggs, sausage gravy & biscuits, corned beef hash, pancakes or French toast with real maple syrup, juice and coffee.   ONLY $10

What:      “Just Jammin”
When:    Thursday, March 1, 2018        6 – p.m.
Where:    Peru Memorial VFW
710 Pleasant St, Rt 22B
Peru, NY 12972

Details:    A group of local musicians get together to “jam.”  They are always looking for others to join them.  Come join them, listen, dance and/or add your voice to their instruments. Items for a light supper available for purchase.  Kitchen and bar open at 5 p.m.

Peru Drama Club Presents Rock of Ages

Drew works at the famous Bourbon Room and just wants to rock.  But when they want to tear down the entire block, will he be able to save Rock and Roll forever, and win the heart of small-town Sherrie?  Come see this hilarious show and relive the greatest music of the 80s!  Presented in the Peru Jr/Sr High Auditorium on March 8th, 9th, and 10th at 7:30 PM, with an additional show at 2:00 PM on March 10th. The show runs 2½ hours with a 20-minute intermission. Admission is $10 in advance and $12 at the door.  For more information and ticket reservations, please email or call (518) 551-0811. Tickets are also available at Kinney’s Pharmacy in Peru and online at

Serving Veterans and Community


Please Share

By John T. Ryan

Bill & Judy Lefevre are #32 in our Peru Gazette photo series of people who make Peru a wonderful place to live. They are the leaders of Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 309 and its Auxiliary. Bill is the Post Commander. Judy is the Auxiliary President. Bill and Judy work very hard serving the Post’s members and the Peru community. If you stop by Post 309, Bill and Judy are usually there to welcome you.

A few people think of the VFW Post as a place for the vets to go to have a drink. As Judy said, “We’re not just another bar. It helps keep our doors open. It’s not our mission.”

The VFW states its core values as follows:
• Always put the interests of our members first
• Treat donors as partners in our cause
• Promote patriotism
• Honor military service
• Ensure the care of veterans and their families
• Serve our communities
• Promote a positive image of the VFW
• Respect the diversity of veteran opinions.

Post 309 implements these values in several ways. Its well-attended Veterans Day and Memorial Day Services honor veterans and remind everyone, especially our youth, of the sacrifices made by our nation’s veterans. Anyone who attends either service can’t help but be impressed by the respect shown to military tradition and by the hospitality offered to everyone present.

The Post’s Voice of Democracy audio-essay program offers local high school students the opportunity to win cash awards or college scholarships at the local, state and national level. The Auxiliary’s youth program awards certificates to kindergarten students who have learned the Pledge of Allegiance to the Flag. Flag themed coloring books are also made available to local schools.

Peru residents facing a medical crisis have benefited from the fundraisers hosted by Post 309 while others look to the VFW as a great place to hold family functions. Its breakfasts and weekly entertainment programs are enjoyed by many members of the local community.

Veterans from all branches of the Armed Services belong to Post 309. They appreciate the camaraderie they find at at Post 309 as well as the organization’s insurance programs, financial grants, veterans advocacy in Albany and Washington and its expertise in dealing with the Veterans Administration.

Fortunately in 2015 the VFW Ladies Auxiliary expanded its membership eligibility requirements. It is no longer a Ladies Auxiliary but simply an Auxiliary. Members must be citizens of the United States or a United States National, and at least 16 years old.

Those eligible are:
• Husband/Wife
• Widower/Widow
• Father/Mother
• Grandfathers/Grandmothers
• Sons/Daughters
• Grandsons/Granddaughters
• Brothers/Sisters
Of persons who were or are eligible for membership in the Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States.

Those eligible for membership in the VFW are those that have received a campaign medal for overseas service; have served 30 consecutive or 60 non-consecutive days in Korea; or have ever received hostile fire or imminent danger pay. Click here for more information.

If you have questions or an interest in joining the VFW or the VFW Auxiliary please call Bill Lefevre at 518-563-7558 or Judy Lefevre at 518-593-5628.

Hotel Saranac restored, reopens with 1920s flourish – Sun Community News & Printing

Search Underway For Missing Whiteface Skier – – The Adirondack Almanack

Keene’s Biesemeyer set to make Olympic debut | Local News |

A Message From Your Firefighters

The Peru Volunteer Fire Department is having a car wash on the following dates-2/24/18, 3/3/18, 3/10/18, 3/17/18, 3/24/18, 3/24/18 and 3/31/18-Weather Permitting. A $5.00 donation helps support your local Fire Department and gets that vehicle clean. Our hours are 8 am till Noon . We do appreciate your support.

Agenda Includes Main Street Project Discussion

AGENDA – TOWN BOARD REGULAR MEETING, February 12, 2018 @ 7:00 PM

Call Meeting To Order

Pledge of Allegiance

Roll Call

MOTION: Approval of Minutes for the Town Board Regular Meeting of January 29, 2018;

MOTION/DISCUSSION: To Accept reports from all Departments: (Water/Sewer/Valcour; Highway; Town Clerk; Dog Control; Youth Department; Code/Zoning; Supervisor’s Report; Court; Website; JCEO; and Banking Reports)

Community Input

DISCUSSION: Main St. Improvement Project

RESOLUTION/ DISCUSSION: Resolution for Acceptance of the Court Internal Audit

DISCUSSION/ RESOLUTION: Resolution to Purchase and Install Disaster Recovery/Court Server

DISCUSSION: Sewer Upgrade Workshop Schedule

DISCUSSION: Other Business.

DISCUSSION: Public Comments on Agenda Items Only.
MOTION: Adjourn

Peru CSD Regular Monthly BOE Meeting & Budget Workshop & Public Hearing February 13, 2018

Revised Agenda Received 

Peru Central’s Board of Education launches its regular monthly meeting and budget workshop #1 on Tuesday, February 13th at 6:30 PM at the school district’s Community Room, adjacent to the main entrance of Peru Jr/Sr High School.  It is anticipated that an executive session will take place immediately following the 6:30 PM start, and that the school board will reconvene for public session business at approximately 7:00 PM.  Anticipated topics include:

  • Proposed Capital Project
  • Public Hearing on Smart Schools Investment Plan
  • Donation Acceptance
  • Appointment of Personnel
  • The full Board agenda will be available on the District’s website.

All are welcome.



Watertown Daily Times | Governor proposes cuts to private college financial aid

Crews search for missing skier at Whiteface

Fire ravages Schuyler Falls business | News |

Graduation Rate Continues Upward Trend, Rises to 80.2%

State Meets Federal Graduation Rate Goal, But Gaps in Achievement Persist

Feb. 7, 2018 – The New York State Education Department released high school graduation rates for the 2013 cohort, students who entered 9th grade in 2013. The overall graduation rate increased to 80.2 percent, up 0.5 percentage points from 79.7* percent for the 2012 cohort. The 2013 cohort graduation rate is more than 11 percentage points higher than it was a decade earlier, when the 2003 cohort graduation rate was 68.6 percent. Click here for Peru Central School Data. 

June Graduation Rates
2012 Cohort 2013 Cohort % Point Change

79.7 80.2 +0.5

2003 Cohort 2012 Cohort % Point Change

68.6 80.2 +11.6

When August graduates are included, the 2013 cohort graduation rate increased to 82.1 percent, which exceeds the goal established for federal accountability in 2010 to have 80 percent of students graduate by August of their fourth year in high school. The state’s graduation rate is on track to meet its first Every Student Succeeds Act plan long-term goal for graduation rate of 83.9 percent in 2021-22. Despite this, significant achievement gaps exist.

2013 Cohort Graduation Rates
June August % Point Change

80.2 82.1 +1.9

This year’s graduation rate improved for black and Hispanic students, for students with disabilities, and in four of the state’s Big 5 city school districts. While the graduation rate declined slightly for current English language learners (ELLs), it improved again for Ever ELLs.

“The Regents and I are focused on providing greater equity for students throughout the entire education system,” Board of Regents Chancellor Betty A. Rosa said. “When we achieve greater equity, we will see student achievement improve across the board – and that will result in greater numbers of students graduating, regardless of their race, ethnicity, wealth, disability status, or any other basis. The Board of Regents will continue its efforts to foster educational equity for all New York schools and children.”

State Education Commissioner MaryEllen Elia said, “New York’s graduation rate continues its steady, upward trend. We see incremental improvements across the State, holding onto last year’s gains and slowly building upon them. And that’s good news. At the same time, however, troubling gaps in achievement persist, and we must accelerate the pace of improvement. With its focus on equity, the State’s newly approved ESSA plan will help drive the changes we need to ensure all children have the same opportunities for success.”

2013 Cohort Graduation Rate Data for the Big 5 City School Districts

Graduation rates reported by four of the Big 5 City School Districts surpassed the statewide growth of 0.5 percentage points. Rochester and Yonkers experienced significant improvements; for the first time, the graduation rate in a Big 5 city school district, Yonkers, exceeded the statewide rate.

Big 5 City School District Cohort Graduation Rates
2012 2013 % Pointe Change
Statewide 79.7 80.2 +0.5

NYC 70.0 71.1 +1.1

Buffalo 61.7 62.7 +1.0

Rochester 47.7 51.9 +4.2

Syracuse 61.0 60.5 -0.5

Yonkers 78.3 82.8 +4.5

2013 Cohort Graduation Rate Data by Need/Resource Group

Graduation rates in all Need/Resource Groups improved slightly or remained flat, except high-need Urban-Suburban districts, which fell slightly. Average- and low-need districts continue to have the highest graduation rates. High Need, Large City schools experienced growth larger than the statewide average at 2.3 percentage points, however, they continue to have the lowest graduation rates. A significant gap persists between the graduation rates of high- and low-need districts. For the 2013 cohort, 94.8 percent of students in low-need districts graduated in four years, while only 63.9 percent of students in high-need Large City districts (i.e., Buffalo, Rochester, Syracuse, and Yonkers combined) did so.

The charter school graduation rate continued to improve, from 72.4 percent for the 2012 cohort to 74.8 percent for the 2013 cohort. While still a small portion of the overall 2013 cohort (2.3%), there has been a considerable increase in the number of charter school students in the cohort. The pace of growth in graduation rate at charters has slowed since last year, while the number of students enrolled at charters continues to increase.

Cohort Graduation Rate Data by Race/ Ethnicity

A large achievement gap – approximately 20 percentage points – persists when comparing the graduation rate of black and Hispanic students with their white peers, though that gap has narrowed slightly over the past two years. The Regents and Department will continue their efforts to close this gap through the implementation of the State’s ESSA plan and the My Brother’s Keeper initiative, aimed at bringing greater fairness throughout the education system.

Cohort Graduation Rates by Race/Ethnicity
2012 2013 % Point Change
Black 68.2 69.3 +1.6

Hispanic 68.0 68.4 +0.8

White 88.7 89.0 +0.7

Difference in Graduation Rates by Race
2011 2012 2013 %Point Change
Black/White 23.5 20.5 19.7 -3.8

Hispanic/White 23.5 20.7 20.6 -2.9

Cohort Graduation Rate Data for English Language Learners

The graduation rate for “Ever ELLs” (students identified as English language learners in any school year preceding the school year of their last enrollment – but excluding students who are “Current ELLs”) continue to show strong progress, improving from a graduation rate of 82.1 percent for the 2012 cohort to 84.4 percent for the 2013 cohort – significantly outpacing the statewide average of 80.2 percent.

The graduation rate for “Current ELLs” (students who were identified as ELLs during the school year of their last enrollment), however, continues to lag far behind the statewide rate, with only 26.6 percent of the 2013 cohort graduating on time – down slightly from the 2012 cohort rate of 26.9 percent.

Cohort Graduation Rates for English Language Learners
2012 2013 % Point Change
Ever ELLs 82.1 84.4 +2.3

Current ELLs 26.9 26.6 -0.3

2013 Cohort Graduation Rate Data for Students with Disabilities and by Gender

The graduation rate for students with disabilities improved again this year, moving from 52.8 percent for the 2012 cohort to 54.2 percent for the 2013 cohort. Female students continued to graduate at a higher rate than their male peers, with 2013 cohort graduation rates at 84.1 percent for females and 76.5 percent for males – both representing small gains over last year’s rates.

2013 Cohort Dropout Rate Data

The percentage of students who dropped out of school remained relatively flat this year, declining from 6.5 percent for the 2012 cohort to 6.2 percent for the 2013 cohort. Despite this small overall improvement, the percentage of Current ELL students statewide who dropped out increased by 1.7 percentage points, from 28 percent for the 2012 cohort to 29.7 percent for the 2013 cohort. The dropout rate for students with disabilities improved slightly this year, decreasing from 12.3 percent for the 2012 cohort to 11.6 percent for the 2013 cohort.

Cohort Dropout Rates
2012 2013 %Point Change

Statewide 6.5 6.2 -0.3

Current ELLs 28.0 29.7 +1.7

Students with Disabilities 12.3 11.6 -0.7

Four, Five and Six-Year Graduation Rate Data

As in previous years, the data show that persistence pays off. For the 2011 statewide cohort, the four-year graduation rate was 78.1 percent; students continuing to a fifth year improved the rate to 83.5 percent; and a sixth year improved the rate even further, to 84.9 percent. The 2012 cohort five-year graduation rate increased by nearly 5 percentage points to 84.5 percent, up from the four-year graduation rate of 79.7 percent.

Current ELL students demonstrated significant increases in graduation rates given additional time and continued services. For the 2011 cohort, the four-year Current ELL graduation rate was 33.8 percent; the five-year rate rose to 44.9 percent; and the six-year rate reached 48.3 percent. That is an increase of more than 14 percentage points and represents 1,100 more students willing to put in the extra time to earn a diploma. For the 2012 cohort, the four-year Current ELL graduation rate was 26.9 percent and the five-year rate rose significantly to 36.8 percent.

Cohort 4, 5 & 6-Year Graduation Rates
4-Year 5-Year 6-Year % Point Change

2012 Statewide 79.7 84.5 +4.8

2012 Current ELL 26.9 36.8 +9.9

2011 Statewide 78.1 83.5 84.9 +6.8

2011 Current ELL 33.8 44.9 48.3 +14.5

Multiple Pathways to Graduation

The Board of Regents is committed to providing multiple pathways for students to earn a regular high school diploma, and the Board has approved regulations to establish multiple, comparably rigorous assessment pathways to graduation for all students. By offering these multiple pathways, the Board recognizes the importance of engaging students in rigorous and relevant academic programs. Specifically, Regents-approved regulations recognize students’ interests in the Arts; Languages Other Than English; Career and Technical Education; Humanities; and Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) by allowing an approved pathway assessment to meet the students’ graduation requirements; more information about these Multiple Pathways is available on the Department’s website.

In addition, at its June 2016 meeting, the Board of Regents permanently approved regulations to establish a new Career Development Occupational Studies (CDOS) graduation pathway for all students. The CDOS Commencement Credential certifies that a student has the standards-based knowledge and skills necessary for entry-level employment. Previously, only students with disabilities could exit school with a New York State CDOS Commencement Credential. These regulations expanded to all students the opportunity to earn the CDOS Commencement Credential.

For the 2016-17 school year, the Department implemented a new system to collect and report data on the number of students who earn a diploma through one of the new multiple pathways to graduation. That data, available today for the first time, shows that school districts reported more than 9,900 students earned a diploma through one of the new pathways. These graduates are included within the overall graduation rate numbers announced today.

Safety Net Options for Students with Disabilities

In 2016, the Board of Regents also acted to enable superintendents to make a local determination as to the academic proficiency of certain students with disabilities seeking to graduate with a local diploma and began requiring that a parent or guardian request this option for their child. In 2017, the Board expanded the superintendent determination to allow the CDOS credential as a safety net for students with disabilities who pass their Regents coursework but do not pass the ELA or math Regents exams. (Note: changes to the CDOS safety net regulations were adopted in December 2017 and, therefore, are not reflected in the 2013 cohort graduation rate). In school year 2016-17, 315 students with disabilities received diplomas through a superintendent’s determination.

Data Collection & Verification

The graduation data is reported by educational institutions to SED throughout the school year. The cohort 2013 graduation rate data was available for verification until the close of the state data warehouse in August 2017. District superintendents certified the data in September 2017. For more specific data points and for school- and district-level graduation data, visit the Department’s public data site. A PowerPoint presentation with additional data is also available

*Note: last year we announced a statewide graduation rate of 79.4 percent, but a one-time-only data correction changed that number to the correct rate of 79.7 percent. All references in today’s data release are to the corrected district and statewide rates.

You or Someone You Know May Qualify

A Message from the United Way of the Adirondack Region


Tax Preparation is available in Clinton, Essex, & Franklin Counties by Certified Volunteer Preparers:

To learn more about the Free service or to find a site near you, call 2-1-1 or 1-888-774-0289.

Earned Income Tax Credit-What is it? The earned income tax credit is a refundable income tax credit that is available to low-income workers with “earned” income-wages or self employment income. If your family earned less than $53,930, you may qualify for a federal credit up to as much as $6,381, plus an additional NYS Credit. If you qualify, you could reduce or eliminate your income tax, even get money back that could be used for savings, home repairs or other things.

North Country wins more than $100 million to expand high-speed internet access | NCPR News

State Land Tax Cap Could Cost Adirondack Communities – – The Adirondack Almanack

Source: State Land Tax Cap Could Cost Adirondack Communities – – The Adirondack Almanack

Yes, part of Peru is within the Adirondack Park.

Treading Water: Vermont’s Pols Are Going Nowhere Fast on Clean Lakes | Environment | Seven Days | Vermont’s Independent Voice

Peru eyes downtown improvements – Sun Community News & Printing

Peru eyes Sullivan Park upgrades – Sun Community News & Printing

The Soup Kitchen at St. Augustine’s Parish Center will be closed today due to harsh weather.
We will see you next week!  Be safe and stay warm.God Bless!

A Town Hall for New York’s 21st Congressional District


Confirmed Participants: Tanya Boone-D, Granville; Don Boyajian-D, Cambridge; Tedra Cobb-D, Canton; Russell Finley-R, Lisbon; Sara Idleman-D, Greenwich; Ronald Kim-D, Queensbury; Emily Martz-D, Saranac Lake; David Mastrianni-D, Schroon Lake; Patrick Nelson-D, Stillwater; Katie Wilson-D, Keene; Invited (but unable to attend): Elise Stefanik-R, Willsboro. 
E. Glenn Giltz Auditorium, Hawkins Hall, SUNY Plattsburgh
Saturday, February 17, 2018, 3:00-5:00pm. 

The People’s Forum is a non-partisan congressional candidate forum (open to the public, no charge) organized by Plattsburgh-based community group Change Through Action in collaboration with SUNY Plattsburgh’s Institute for Ethics in Public Life and the Center for Community Engagement. The event will be co-moderated by Julia Devine (Center for Community Engagement) and Dr. Jonathan Slater (Institute for Ethics in Public Life).

The mission of The People’s Forum is to provide a truly engaging, educational, and authentic town hall-style dialogue between the people of the district and the district’s 2018 congressional candidates. All questions will come directly from audience members with questions being chosen via lottery and not pre-screened or pre-selected in any way. Similarly, a candidate will be selected to answer each question by random draw, though still in such a way as to ensure all candidates in attendance are given equal speaking time. All candidates will be given Wild Cards that may be used claim additional speaking time during the forum by either a) adding time to the direct response to an audience member’s question, or b) as an opportunity to “jump in” on a question asked of another candidate with additional information or rebuttal. A straw poll will be conducted and results shared as to which candidate audience members feel would best represent New York’s 21st congressional district in 2018.

Library Closing

Due to inclement weather,  the Peru Free Library is closing at 1pm today.

Plattsburgh named as possible destination for paroled murderer | Local News |

Lake George Plan: Halve Road Salt Use By 2020 – – The Adirondack Almanack

Do we need similar measures near Lake Champlain?

Source: Lake George Plan: Halve Road Salt Use By 2020 – – The Adirondack Almanack

North Country at Work: why ski patroller Rick Wood watches and respects Whiteface | NCPR News

Local Government Cost-Saving Measure Passes State Senate

From the Office of NYS Senator Betty Little

The State Senate today approved legislation (S.2947) that would continue a cooperative purchasing law, which enables local governments to utilize existing contracts of federal, state and local government agencies for the purchase of goods and services.

Little sponsored the original legislation in 2012.  She said the law’s sunset date should be eliminated to help local governments better plan for future purchases with the opportunity to save local tax dollars.

Cooperative purchasing, also known as ‘piggy-backing’, is a procurement method in which a contract previously awarded to a government agency may be utilized by other government agencies on the same terms and conditions.

“This law has worked since its inception and, over time, as more local governments participate, it will work even better,” said Little.  “The current sunset is 2019.  Acting this year, rather than pushing up against the sunset date, makes sense for our local governments who otherwise will be left guessing whether or not the law will be renewed.”

The New York State School Boards Association, New York Conference of Mayors and New York State Association of Counties support the legislation.

A companion bill is sponsored by Assemblywoman Addie Jenne.

Happy Birthday Albina

Happy Birthday to Mrs. Albina St. Germain who is celebrating her 107th birthday today. This photo was taken yesterday at St. Augustine’s Church where she attends Mass every Sunday. After Mass Mrs. St. Germain and family attended the pancake breakfast at St. Joseph’s Church Hall in Treadwells Mills where she walked from table to table speaking with family and friends.

These Folks Enjoy What They Do

Please Share!

L-R Fran Williford, Suzanne Charette, Sally Kokes, Carol Dumont, Jimmy Dumont, Paul Dirolf, Jim Fezette, Rocky Giroux, Kathy Bracero, Olivia Nachbauer, Paul Green, Sharalyn Nachbauer, George Fountain, Alice Fountain

Peru – North Country Mission of Hope volunteers are #32 in our Peru Gazette photo series featuring people who make Peru a wonderful place to live. Wednesday mornings these very friendly and welcoming folks along with other volunteers pack medical, clothing and school supplies for shipment to Nicaragua. They definitely have fun while they work.

Volunteers work every Wednesday and on the first Saturday of each month between 9 AM to Noon at the Mission of Hope’s new Route 22 location. Call 518-643-5572 for information or just stop by at 3452 Route 22.

Click here to view our recent story on the North Country Mission of Hope. 

Spring 2017 Semester President’s List and Dean’s List College Students From Peru, NY

Nick Lawliss of Peru, N.Y., a senior majoring in mechanical engineering, was named a Presidential Scholar for the spring 2017 semester at Clarkson University.

SUNY Canton congratulates Jamie Vogt of Peru, NY for earning highest honors during the fall 2017 semester. Last is a SUNY Canton Criminal Investigation major. President’s List recognizes full-time students who achieve a GPA of 3.75 or greater.

The State University of New York at Potsdam recently named 882 students to the President’s List, in recognition of their academic excellence in the Fall 2017 semester.
The students included:

• Keagen Briggs of Peru, NY, whose major is History
• Kali Dorey of Peru, NY, whose major is Psychology
• Karly Dynko of Peru, NY, whose major is Childhood/Early Childhood Education
• Dianna Hunter of Peru, NY, whose major is Childhood/Early Childhood Education
To achieve the honor of being on the President’s List, each student must have satisfactorily completed 12 numerically-graded semester hours, with a grade point average of 3.5 or higher.

Michelle Corrigan of Peru, NY has been named to the Champlain College Dean’s List for the fall 2017 semester. Students on the Dean’s List have achieved a grade point average of 3.5 or higher during the semester. Corrigan is majoring in Health Care Administration.

SUNY Canton congratulates students for their academic success during the fall 2017 semester. Dean’s List recognizes full-time students who have earned a GPA between 3.25 and 3.74.

• Lia Hemingway, a SUNY Canton Individual Studies major, from Peru, NY.
• Kirsten Vanmoerkerque, a SUNY Canton Individual Studies major, from Peru, NY.
• Parker Wyckoff, a SUNY Canton Homeland Security major, from Peru, NY.

The State University of New York at Potsdam recently named 351 students who excelled academically in the Fall 2017 semester to the College’s Dean’s List.
The students included:
• Hillary Drake of Peru, NY, whose major is Exercise Science
• Bryn Mousseau of Peru, NY, whose major is Business Administration
To achieve the honor of being on the Dean’s List, each student must have satisfactorily completed 12 numerically-graded semester hours, with a grade point average of between 3.25 and 3.49 in the given semester.

Peter Daly of Peru, NY, was among 1,534 SUNY Oneonta students who earned Dean’s List honors for the fall 2017 semester. To qualify for the Dean’s List, a student must earn a grade-point average of 3.5 or higher while carrying a course load of 12 hours or more.

Connor M. Douglass of Peru, a sophomore majoring in broadcasting and mass communication, earned Deans’ List recognition at SUNY Oswego for the fall 2017 semester. Douglass was among students who received a grade point average of 3.3 to 3.79.

Town Board Remains At Four Members

By John T. Ryan (Updated February 2, 2018 at 8:42 p.m.)

It appears the Peru Town Board will consist of four members, not the normal five during 2018. At the Board’s January 29 meeting Supervisor Brandy McDonald (a Democrat) moved to appoint former Councilman Donald McBrayer (a Republican) to fill the open board position until December 31, 2018. The position will appear on the November 2018 election ballot with the winner to take office on January 1, 2019. The position opened when Peru voters elected Councilman Brandy McDonald to be Town Supervisor last November.

Councilman Jim Douglass (a Democrat) seconded McDonald’s motion. When the vote was taken, Councilman Melvin Irwin (a Republican) and Councilman Jim Langley (a Republican) voted no, meaning McBrayer (a Republican) was not appointed to the position.

Irwin explained his vote saying, “At the last meeting I said a four-person board forced to get along is not a bad idea. I’m sticking to that.” Irwin added that he had spoken to the Association of Towns. They said that a replacement is usually named, but there’s no reason a four-person board wouldn’t work.

Councilman Jim Langley said, “I think I made it quite clear two weeks ago. I’m going to vote no.” Langley later told the Peru Gazette that he favors considering other past board members. He named Sue Polhemus, Roger Bonner, Kregg Bruno, Cortland Forrence and others as possible appointees.

Prior to the vote Donald McBrayer addressed the Board and the larger than usual group of residents in attendance. He said he did not run for reelection because he will ultimately be moving to Phoenix, Arizona where his wife Kara has found relief from her severe asthma. He explained that with the exception of a three week vacation in Phoenix he will be in Peru throughout 2018 and that he has the time to continue serving the town. He mentioned three primary reasons he would like to continue. The Main Street Project is ready for Phase #1. McBrayer has been the Board’s liaison for the project and he would like to see the plans implemented. He has also been very involved in the ongoing technology upgrades including online bill payment. He would like to assist with those upgrades. He also believes that the Board would function better with five members. McBrayer said, “With four members there’s the potential for a project to hang and ultimately a hung project is a failed project.” See discussion at the 3:20 to 14:00 minute mark of our video.

In other meeting actions the Board approved the Youth Commission’s recommendation that new officers be appointed. Board Member Jim Douglass pointed that outgoing Youth Commission Chairman Greg Mills should be thanked for his dedicated service to the town and the youth. He said, “Greg has put in a lot hours in that job.”

The new Youth Commission leaders are: Jennifer Madore – Co-Chair, Beth Lozier – Co-Chair, Carrie Smith – Vice-Chair and Carrie Beattie – Secretary.

At the recommendation of Code Enforcement Officer Robert Guynup the Board will be scheduling a public hearing on a proposal to amend the permit fees for residential and commercial property repairs or alterations. The current fee is $50 no matter what the size of the project is. Guynup mentioned that he recently issued a $50 permit for a $200,000 project where he will have to conduct at least six inspections. The new fees will be based on the dollar value of the project.

Currently the fees are as follows:

Residential/Demolition/Alteration/ Repairs: $50.00
Commercial Demolition/Alteration/ Repairs: $75.00

Guynup proposed the following fees:

UP TO $10,000.00 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . $ 50.00
$10,001.00 to $25,000.00. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .     100.00
$25,001.00 and over. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .    150.00

Up to $10,000 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . $100.00
$10001.00 to $25.000.00. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   150.00
$25,001.00 to $50,000.00 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .     200.00
$50,001.00 and over . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .    300.00

Demolition fees
Residential : $75.00
Commercial : $100.00

Sewer Superintendent Courtney Tetrault informed the Board regarding recent emergency temporary repairs to a pipe at the Valcour sewage pumping station. A replacement pipe will have to be installed very soon. This summer a new pump and control panel will be installed. Tetrault said he budgeted $5,000 for AES to conduct preliminary engineering reseaarch on the long term needs of the Valcour sewage system.

The Board is poised to approve a policy for posting information on town signs. Non-profit organizations will be able to request posting. Priority will be given to organizations located in the Town of Peru. It will be on a first come first serve basis. Requests must be submitted not more than seven days prior to an event and the event will be posted for not more than ten days. Town Attorney Matt Favro will work with Pam Barber to draw up a written format to implement the policy.


Gov. offers buyout for Underwood residents | News |

A Blessing For the People of Nicaragua and the North Country

By John T. Ryan

Peru – 2018 is an historic year for the North Country Mission of Hope. On January 2 the Mission opened its warehouse and offices at the former Peru Knights of Columbus Hall at 3452 Route 22 and in June it will celebrate its 20th Anniversary. Over the course of those twenty years, the Mission of Hope had to relocate its warehouse six times. Its offices were located at Seton Catholic Central.

Sister Debbie Blow

Mission of Hope Executive Director Sister Debbie Blow is thrilled about the new building. She said, “This is our home. It gives us our own identity. It is the Mission of Hope. As I often said, we’re 19 or 20. We’re old enough to get our own apartment.” Reflecting on the building’s history as a Knights of Columbus Hall and later a fitness center, Sister Debbie said, “This building has always been a sign of life. Now we’re here to stay.”

The new location has generous parking, excellent handicapped access, a spacious office, new windows and doors, internet access, handicapped accessible bathrooms, a small kitchenette, a new furnace, a large meeting/training room and most importantly sorting and storage rooms. Volunteers and donations of money and materials by generous individuals and businesses made the building purchase and upgrades possible.

Main entrance and sorting room.

Storage Room with medical supples awaiting shipment.

The North Country Mission of Hope was formed in 1998 as a response to the havoc caused in Nicaragua by Hurricane Mitch. The children of a Nicaraguan immigrant family attended Seton Catholic at the time. When they told faculty and staff how their hometown had been devastated, the school and community responded with volunteers and aid. As they say, the rest his history.

Today, the mission sponsors five hospitals, twenty-three schools, 110 HIV orphans and feeds over 7,000 children. Many North Country people sponsor Nicaraguan school children assisting with tuition, food and books. A few days ago a 40-foot container filled with almost 600 packages of educational and medical equipment departed from the Peru warehouse and in about two weeks forty-six adults and high school youths are scheduled to make the 71st mission to Nicaragua. Altogether, 1,900 adults and youths have participated in mission trips. Students from every local high school have participated.

Asked how the Mission has grown to this extent Sister Debbie said, “It’s largely been by word of mouth. We’e received wonderful support from all over the North Country. Missioners have relatives and friends from all parts of the country who participate. Seton Catholic and its international students have been very important. Peru High School Principal Chris Mazella has been great at promoting the program and has made two mission trips himself. Many local people who spend time in Florida spread the word and connect with sponsors, donors and missioners. I’ll be making a speaking trip through Florida. My Order, the Dominican Sisters of Hope, has also been very helpful.”

While the Mission of Hope focuses on Nicaragua, Sister Debbie wants people to know that local people in need are not forgotten. She explained, “it’s a well-kept secret, but we loan out medical equipment especially to veterans, the extremely poor and people in crisis. We also assist people in domestic violence situations and fire victims.”

Administrative Assistant Suzanne Charette and Sister Debbie

There are many ways Peru residents and others can assist the North Country Mission of Hope. Every Wednesday and the 1st Saturday of each month volunteers work from 9 to noon to organize and pack items for shipment. Fifteen to twenty volunteers typically participate. Sister Debbie refers to volunteering as a mutual blessing. The Mission of Hope benefits from the volunteers’ time and talents and the volunteers benefit when they meet new people and form new friendships. She pointed out that the work ranges from folding and counting to heavy lifting and moving equipment.

Sister Debbie and Administration Assistant Suzanne Charette are usually present at the Mission of Hope offices from 8 to 2 daily. The office phone is 518-643-5572. Sister Debbie can be reached at 518-570-5443. Everyone is invited to stop by to learn more about the Mission of Hope and to see the new building.

Nicaragua Facts Taken From A Mission of Hope Brochure:

Population jumped from 5.8 million to 5.9 million over the past two years
Rural Poverty rate = 67%
33% of adults cannot read or write
52% of girls never finish high school
50% of babies are born to teenage mothers
Mortality 0-5 years = 27%
H.S. Education = 36%
33% of population is under 15
Underemployment rate = 47%
Chronic rural child malnutrition = 46%
76% of people live on less that $2/day
Nicaragua is one of the poorest countries in the Western Hemisphere

Well Attended Workshop on Main Street Plan

Happy Kids Make For Success

L-R Mary Jane Wilkins and Morgan Wilkins

The staff at Little Angels Preschool is #31 in our Peru Gazette photo series featuring people who make Peru a wonderful place to live. Mary Jane Wilkins opened Little Angels 24 years ago and now she has the pleasure of working with her daughter Morgan. Little Angels offers preschool for 3 to 5 year-olds with an emphasis on kindergarten readiness and socializing. It also offers before and after school care for school age children. Little Angels is located at 245 Jabez Allen Rd. Phone 518-643-2017.

Main Street Project Update on Monday

A Town Board Workshop is scheduled for Monday, January 29, 2018 at 6:00 PM. The purpose of the workshop will be to discuss The Main Street Project. The Workshop will take place at The Peru Town Hall and is open to the public.

Cuomo order lets pharmacists give flu shots to kids – Capitol Confidential

McBrayer Board Appointment on Meeting Agenda


Call Meeting To Order

Pledge of Allegiance

Roll Call

MOTION: Approval of Minutes for the January 18, 2018 Regular Board Meeting.

Community Input

RESOLUTION/DISCUSSION: Essex County Terry Mtn. Snow Plowing Contract Approval.

MOTION/DISCUSSION: Approve the Appointments of the Youth Commission Board

DISCUSSION: New Building Permit Fees

DISCUSSION: Valcour Sewer Repairs Issue

RESOLUTION/DISCUSSION: Appointment of Donald McBrayer as Town Councilor

DISCUSSION: Other Business.

DISCUSSION: Public Comments on Agenda Items Only.


MOTION: Adjourn to Executive Session

MOTION: Return From Executive Session

MOTION: Adjourn

Bombardier contracts spur new hires | Local News |

County formally supports Sky West bid | Local News |

N.Y. community colleges would take hit under Cuomo budget – Times Union

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