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Greenfield Commonwealth Virtual School shows interest in Leyden classroom space

  • Bob Kumin, principal and director of student services for the Greenfield Commonwealth Virtual School, approached the Leyden Selectboard about leasing classroom space at the closed Pearl Rhodes Elementary School. STAFF PHOTO/ZACK DeLUCA

Staff Writer
Published: 11/8/2019 6:08:44 PM
Modified: 11/8/2019 6:08:31 PM

LEYDEN — The Selectboard discussed a potential deal to rent out classroom space at the closed Pearl Rhodes Elementary School, as well as an upcoming public tax possession auction, during its Monday meeting.

Bob Kumin, principal and director of student services for the Greenfield Commonwealth Virtual School, approached the Selectboard about leasing classroom space at Pearl Rhodes. Municipal Assistant Michelle Giarusso said Kumin cited a need to move, and an interest in moving to a true classroom space with access to internet. The Virtual School currently operates on the third floor at 238 Main St. in Greenfield.

“I think it’s worth exploring,” Giarusso said of leasing space at the school.

Selectboard members, Giarusso and Kumin conducted a walk-through of the classroom space on Thursday.

“They liked the idea of it being an actual school,” Giarusso said in a phone interview after the walk-through.

The Virtual School would be responsible for providing its own server, and providing its students with lunches. It would transport students to Leyden’s school with its own van. In addition to the students, there would be two or three adult employees and teachers using the space.

Giarusso said Kumin is looking at the Pearl Rhodes classroom space as well as a potential space in Greenfield. Selectboard members discussed renting out the south classroom of the elementary school, saying it would be almost fully separated from any rooms that may become future town offices.

Full details, including how much renting the space would cost should the Virtual School move to Pearl Rhodes, are in still in discussion, Giarusso said.

According to it’s website, the Greenfield Commonwealth Virtual School, a public school of choice, serves students from across Massachusetts who need a learning community that is accessible and flexible. The school supplements educational programs offered by traditional school districts by providing unique programs that address the needs of students who learn better in non-traditional environments.

In virtual classroom-based programs, students who benefit from structure take part in live lessons and a scheduled school day. These schedules are similar to those found at a traditional school, but benefit from the flexibility of an online classroom and the home environment.

Notice of public auction

Leyden will hold a tax possession auction on Wednesday at 2 p.m. at Pearl Rhodes. There are four town-owned properties up for auction. All the properties will be sold “as is,” Giarusso said. A full list of terms and conditions regarding the auction can be found at

Reach Zack DeLuca at 413-772-0261, ext. 264 or

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