Education news and notes

Tickets available for Rani Arbo show to benefit Montessori

BRATTLEBORO >> Hilltop Montessori School and the Latchis Theatre will present a family concert with the New England-based folk quartet, Rani Arbo & daisy mayhem, on Saturday, April 23, at 2 p.m., at the Latchis Theatre.

Rani Arbo & daisy mayhem are Rani Arbo (fiddle, guitar), Andrew Kinsey (bass, banjo, ukulele), Anand Nayak (electric and acoustic guitars) and Scott Kessel (percussion). The group, which has been together for 15 years, has played folk festivals all over the country including the Newport Folk Festival and the California World Music Festival.

The concert, which is sponsored by Brattleboro Subaru, Farnum Insulators, PDSC Law, Prentiss Smith & Company, The Richards Group, Silver Forest, Inc., Sovernet and Stevens & Associates will benefit Hilltop's Tuition Assistance Program. Currently 50 percent of current Hilltop families receive some kind of tuition assistance, both from state programs and school funds. The school's goal is to have the student body truly reflect the diversity of the Brattleboro community.

"The need for tuition assistance is growing as costs increase," Tamara Mount, the Head of School said. "We do not want our school finances to be completely tuition driven. In order to do that, Hilltop will be launching an endowment campaign to help support future generations of students attending the school no matter what their family's finances allow. We're hoping this community concert brings attention to our commitment to serving students from all backgrounds."

Tickets for the concert are $15 for adults and $10 for children. In order to include families of lower income levels, Hilltop and the Latchis are structuring ticket sales with a "buy one, donate one" option. The two organizations have partnered with the Boys and Girls Club, Youth Services, HCRS, and Groundworks Collective to help distribute tickets to children who might not otherwise be able to attend.

Tickets are available on-line at

Marlboro College, language institute form partnership

MARLBORO >> A new agreement brings the number of International Language Institute's college and university partners to 12, with the addition of Marlboro College.

International students whose first languages are not English have a new opportunity to make a successful transition to programs at Marlboro College. Thanks to a partnership with the International Language Institute in Northampton, Mass., the students will receive academic support designed specifically to help college-bound individuals with moderate English skills.

"This is a perfect match," said Brigid Lawler, Marlboro College's Dean of Admissions. "Many potential international students need help with their English before they start their undergraduate or graduate work in the United States. ILI's well-deserved reputation for excellence in teaching English skills as well as the nuances of U.S. academic culture assures that our students will have a better chance at success. We are excited to get the partnership underway."

ILI Executive Director Caroline Gear extolled the advantages of Marlboro College, saying, Marlboro College is located in a beautiful rural setting, but is still reasonably close to Boston and New York City.

"It is an ideal spot for international students seeking degrees in the United States from a very reputable college and who also want to experience U.S. culture outside of large urban areas. We are extremely pleased to welcome Marlboro College as the twelfth partner in our University Pathways Program. And we look forward to working with students who seek to enroll or are already enrolled at Marlboro. The goal is to make them ready for the college environment and succeed in fulfilling their dreams."

ILI's University Pathway Program includes 12 selected colleges and universities, each of which offers academic courses from the community college through graduate levels that are of interest to international (as well as U.S.) students. Other colleges and universities include Bay Path University, Boston Architectural College, Elms College. Greenfield Community College, Lasell College, Paul Smith's College, School for International Training, Springfield College, Western New England University, Westfield State University, and University of Massachusetts-Amherst Graduate School.

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