Haverhill School Officials Decline to Reveal Assistant Superintendent Finalist

Although the Haverhill School Committee voted last week to name one finalist out of 13 applicants for the job of assistant superintendent, school administrators Thursday declined WHAV’s request to reveal the individual. State public records law requires release of finalists’ names. Superintendent Margaret Marotta’s administrative assistant, Andrea Sheehan, gave no reason for the denial. She told WHAV by email, “The name of the candidate is not being released at this time. We will keep you informed as appropriate.” WHAV also made the request of Haverhill Mayor James J. Fiorentini.

Jimmy K’s Diner Plans Expansion, Longer Hours and Liquor Upon Move Next Door

Jimmy K’s Diner, a Haverhill breakfast and lunch spot near the New Hampshire border is not only expanding and moving a few feet, but plans to add dinner and beverages a bit stronger than coffee. Haverhill License Commissioners approved the transfer of Jimmy K’s food license last week, but postponed issuing a requested license for wine, beer and cordials. Commission Chairman Joseph C. Edwards asked for the delay to better define the types of cordials to be served. Cordials are described as a sweetened distilled spirit. The state Alcohol Beverages Control Commission allows communities to grant licenses for “cordials and liqueurs” for restaurants serving food and possessing a wine and malt license.

Lane Glenn Shares His Community College Story and Wants You To Do the Same

Today is the beginning of what is hoped becomes a national campaign to raise awareness of community college benefits as well as share the success stories of some high-profile graduates. Northern Essex Community College President Lane A. Glenn launched the conversation today with a post on his “Running the Campus” blog. Even though nearly half of all students completing a bachelor’s degree also attended a community college, he says, those early beginnings tend to be forgotten. “I encounter people all of the time who have attended community colleges and seem to have let that fade from their minds,” he joked during an interview with WHAV. Instead, Glenn is calling on former community college students to speak up one-on-one, but also on social media using the hashtag #MyCommunityCollege.

After Raising $2.2 Million, Arts Group Ready to Close on Cogswell School

After four years, the former George F. Cogswell School in Bradford is about to become the property of a private, nonprofit art center. Creative Haverhill Project Manager Erin Padilla told city councilors recently the organization is ready to buy the 1891 school from the city for $175,000. The price represents $160,000 the organization agreed to pay in 2015 plus $15,000 in so-called “ticking fees” for the years in between. Even better, Padilla explained, the group is close to its fundraising goal to create the Cogswell ArtSpace. “We have raised 80 percent of our $2.5 million to acquire and renovate the building so we’re really at the homestretch of this capital campaign,” she said.

Consentino Principal: Police Officer’s Deportation Remark Considered ‘Inappropriate’

The principal of the middle school, where a Haverhill police officer allegedly displayed handcuffs and talked to students about “deportation,” told parents and staff the patrolman’s demonstration could be considered “inappropriate.”

In a story reported first by WHAV, Stephen Iannalfo, school resource officer at Albert B. Consentino School, was placed on paid administrative leave Friday. Consentino Principal John Mele said a problem arose after Iannalfo was asked to speak to two classes last Wednesday about “anti-bullying.”

“During the course of the conversation, the SRO made some comments that could, by some, be reasonably considered to be culturally insensitive and inappropriate for a public school setting,” Mele wrote. According to a parent’s complaint, Iannalfo told students they could be deported if they are inside the United States illegally and then called attention to his handcuffs. Mele added counselors will be available to students upset about the remarks so that they may “process their emotions.” State figures show Hispanics make up roughly half of Consentino’s 958 students. Mele used his letter to “reiterate our commitment to diversity and inclusivity for all students.”

“As a school community, we welcome all students and their families, regardless of their background, culturally or otherwise,” Mele said, adding “The school is dedicated to creating and maintaining a safe and welcoming environment for all students and their families.”

In the 10 years Iannalfo as served as school resource officer, he has been called on to address students on a variety of topics from drug abuse education to gang awareness education.

Veteran Haverhill Patrolman on Leave Over Alleged Deportation Talk, Handcuff Display

A more than 30-year veteran Haverhill police officer was placed on paid leave Friday for allegedly displaying handcuffs and putting minority students in fear over their families’ immigration status. Patrolman Stephen Iannalfo, assigned as a school resource officer at Albert B. Consentino School, told students at the school last Wednesday they could be deported if they are inside the United States illegally, according to at least one parent’s complaint. State Department of Education figures say nearly half of the school’s 958 students are classified as Hispanic and more than a quarter of students’ first language is not English. Details of the exchange were not made public, but Haverhill Police confirmed Friday that Iannalfo was notified by letter Friday. “Officer Iannalfo has been placed on paid administrative leave pending an internal investigation,” said Capt. Robert P. Pistone, police spokesman.

Committee Approves Reorganization After Airing Haverhill’s St. James School Concerns

Haverhill students enrolled in the Haverhill Alternative School will move to Greenleaf School, while those attending the Therapeutic Education Assessment Center of Haverhill will move to Bartlett School next fall. School Committee members cemented the plan Thursday night to move the special education programs out of the leased St. James School. The schools, though, became centers of attention in the weeks after a principal and four staffers were suspended as part of an investigation into restraining a student there. A union official, teachers, parents and former students weighed in on the controversy.

Haverhill Councilors Delay Consentino Roof Money; Say HHS Pool Roof Also Needs Fixes

Paying for $400,000 in temporary roof repairs at the Albert B. Consentino School will have to wait at least two weeks since Haverhill’s elected officials couldn’t agree Tuesday night what to give up in exchange for the expense. The impasse came when some councilors balked at taking $129,000 away from planned roof repairs at Haverhill High School’s Charles C. White Pool. Mayor James J. Fiorentini also proposed transferring money leftover in other capital spending accounts. Councilor Timothy J. Jordan said he fears the pool roof won’t get the attention it deserves. “That pool roof has been in terrible shape for years,” he said.