Ludlow summer program gains momentum
By Christian Avard
LUDLOW — A proposed Ludlow summer school program might get a boost from a neighboring town that would like to participate.
Mount Holly residents will decide on Town Meeting Day whether to give $5,000 to Camp Quest, a seven-week, tuition-free program for freshman and sophomores that offers a variety of project-based learning and recreational activities from June to August, according to Camp Quest Chairman Frank Heald.
Mount Holly Select Board member Paul Nevin said the Select Board met with Camp Quest representatives at a special Select Board meeting last month and were supportive of the plan. According to Nevin, Mount Holly students use town recreational facilities on a year-round basis and he said there are very few summer enrichment programs in the Ludlow area.
“These are kids who sometimes don’t have a lot of things to do in the summer. The other Select Board members (Raymond Tarbell and James Heald) agree with me and the voters will decide whether they want to spend $5,000 or not,” said Nevin, a former middle school teacher.
Heald, who also serves as Ludlow town manager, said he was encouraged by Mount Holly’s support.
“This will provide young teens with a summer camp to enjoy a full and rewarding seven-week program of physical and intellectual growth at a key moment in their lives.”
Heald said he was inspired by a similar program in Jaffrey, N.H., that offers academic enrichment and a wide range of activities including athletics, swimming, arts, crafts and camping. He solicited feedback from Black River Middle/High School students and the programs they requested were foreign language classes, professional development opportunities, vocational activities and outdoor recreation.
The program would operate five days a week and provide breakfast, lunch, snack and camp shirts to participating students, Heald said. Although both Select Boards are supportive of the summer program, funding for the program is dependent on voter support on Town Meeting Day.
A similar article on Ludlow’s town meeting warrant will request $20,000 from the voters on Town Meeting Day. Heald said the estimated costs to operate Camp Quest are $25,000.