News

Johnson plans shift in school leadership roles

After her first 100 days in office, the woman in charge of Boston Public Schools - who says she "hit the ground listening" - outlined a plan last week for change in Boston Public Schools. Superintendent Carol Johnson aims to increase accountability, target drop out rates and explore new school models and extra classes for high achieving students, all while keeping an eye on the bottom line: the budget.

She also offered hints about what the future may hold for busing as fuel prices rise and for the No Child Left Behind Act if a Democrat wins the Oval office.  Read more

Aide to six governors, Terry Dolan says farewell to Corner Office

Terry Dolan, who retired from her job in the governor's office last week, was the guest of honor at a State House party on Feb. 1. Governor Deval Patrick was on hand to congratulate Dolan. Photo courtesy Gov. Patrick's office.

After serving six governors, filing away countless important documents, and attending softball games to cheer on the executive branch's team in the rain and on her birthday, Theresa "Terry" Dolan is leaving the Corner Office.  Read more

Superintendent plans changes in leadership roles

After her first 100 days in office, the woman in charge of Boston Public Schools -- who says she "hit the ground listening" -- outlined a plan last week for change in Boston Public Schools. Superintendent Carol Johnson aims to increase accountability, target drop out rates and explore new school models and extra classes for high achieving students, all while keeping an eye on the bottom line: the budget.

She also offered hints about what the future may hold for busing as fuel prices rise and for the No Child Left Behind Act if a Democrat wins the Oval office.  Read more

New Shawmut station connects past and present

Eighteen-month old Virginia White is pictured on a sled ouitside Shawmut Station in 1924. This image is one of 12 historic panels that now adorn the renovated station.  Read more

Upham's Corner teen lends talents to build community

By 
Ashley Miranda and James Wyse, Keystone Club Members
Feb. 1, 2008

Editor's Note: The Keystone Club, a youth group based at the Colonel Daniel Marr Boys and Girls Club, has begun a new project in coordination with the Reporter to profile outstanding neighborhood youth throughout the upcoming year. This is the second in that series of profiles, dubbed Keystone Stars, prepared by Keystone Club members Ashley Miranda and James Wyse.  Read more

Courthouse roundup: Charged with biting a police officer

An Intervale Street man and his girlfriend were in Dorchester District Court this week adding to the list of police reports on the two of them. Both were arraigned on charges of assault and battery and one for biting a police officer.

Tyrone Silcott, 37, of 159 Intervale St., pleaded not guilty to the charges. Silcott's court-appointed attorney, Jeffrey Clifford, said his client is disabled, with six children, including three with the victim.

A separate case is pending with him as the victim, Clifford said.  Read more

Seventh Annual 'Tet in Boston' fest set for weekend

Ten thousand people are expected to gather at Dorchester's Bayside Exposition Center Feb. 2 to welcome the year of the rat and to celebrate Tet, the Vietnamese lunar new year that officially begins Feb. 7. The 11 a.m. kickoff ceremony of the Tet in Boston festival will feature traditional lion and dragon dances as well as keynote speaker Lt. Gov. Tim Murray, Mayor Thomas Menino, Sen. Jack Hart, and Rep. Martin Walsh. City councillors Maureen Feeney, Michael Flaherty, Chuck Turner and Sam Yoon, will also be in attendance.  Read more

New push set: vs. crime in Talbot-Washington area

A joint law enforcement and community initiative to target gun violence and quality of life problems in one of the city's most crime-challenged corridors is ratcheting up its efforts this year. The Washington Street/Talbot Avenue Safe Neighborhood Initiative (SNI) has begun a series of community-wide meetings aimed at prioritizing hot-spots and coordinating a response between police, prosecutors and community-based organizations.  Read more

New push set vs. crime in Talbot-Washington area

A joint law enforcement and community initiative to target gun violence and quality of life problems in one of the city's most crime-challenged corridors is ratcheting up its efforts this year. The Washington Street/Talbot Avenue Safe Neighborhood Initiative (SNI) has begun a series of community-wide meetings aimed at prioritizing hot-spots and coordinating a response between police, prosecutors and community-based organizations.  Read more

FOR SOME, LAST CALLS HEARD ON THE AVE.

For many of Dorchester Avenue's publicans, it's been a rocky decade. Due to a strong economy in Ireland, an increasingly restrictive immigration policy, and the falling value of the American dollar, many of the Irish that once bar-hopped establishments like Tara Pub, Ned Kelly's and Nash's have opted for greener pastures in the old country.

Rising beer and food prices have squeezed bar-owners from the other end, forcing many to face the small businessman's classic decision when times are tough. Cut costs, sell the business or invest in big changes.  Read more

Plans for Cote Ford site remain deep in limbo

Last year, hopeful developers painted dramatic pictures of the future over the abandoned Cote Ford dealership on Cummins Highway, but the neighborhood opposed those plans on density concerns, shrinking them from 165 units to 65 and then asking for less.

On Friday, the Woodhaven Street Association met with the intention of creating a vision of what they would like to see, but were constantly interrupted by fundamental questions they could not answer.  Read more

Wesley Child Care Center moves to St. Matthew's

A former Catholic school building, dormant since its closure in 2006, will soon bustle with the sounds of small feet again.

The Wesley Child Care Center will celebrate its new location at 29 Stanton St. on Feb. 14 with a ribbon cutting ceremony. The building housed St. Matthew School until June 2006, when low enrollment and budget concerns caused the school to close its doors.  Read more

Man found stabbed to death in Tuttle Street home

Neighbors on a quiet Savin Hill sidestreet awoke to a crime scene last Thursday morning, after police discovered a young man stabbed to death in a third floor apartment at 56 Tuttle St.

Boston Police say the victim is Daniel Yakovleff, 20, of Roxbury. He was found dead at approximately 6 a.m.

According to sources familiar with the investigation, the third-floor tenant told police he had picked up two men at a bar and brought them back to his apartment. When he woke up the following morning, the tenant called police after finding one of them had been stabbed.  Read more

Courthouse roundup: Police sweep makes for busy Tuesday at courthouse

Thanks in part to a police roundup of 80 individuals over the weekend, Dorchester District Court's cells were packed with over 100 people on Tuesday, some of whom spent the three-day weekend in lock-up.

Precisely how many people the sweep brought to the court itself is unclear, but the first session, where arraignments occur, overflowed with relatives and those who had made bail.

While the court was able to dispense with 30 to 40 cases in the morning, matters slowed down considerably in the afternoon after the regularly-scheduled lunch break, visibly irritating Judge Sydney  Read more

Top cop huddles with leaders at C-11

Boston Police Commissioner Edward Davis told a roomful of merchants and civic leaders last week that he remains confident that the new year will see a continued drop in violent crime in Dorchester, despite a bloody January that has seen five homicides in District C-11 alone, including three last week. Davis huddled with about 40 community leaders and other law enforcement officers in a unique mid-day meeting last Friday at the C-11 police station on Gibson Street.  Read more

Campaign springs to life in city

Some of the rancor displayed in Monday's presidential debate at the congressional Black Caucus began to spill into Boston this week. And the race has come alive in the city's neighborhoods in just a week's time.

Speaker of the House Sal DiMasi, gathered with state and city leaders to discuss strategy, dropped a bomb on Gov. Deval Patrick's support of Barack Obama, intimating that the two shared a lack of experience, referencing Patrick's tumultuous first year in office.  Read more

In Uphams Corner, couple exchanges wedding vows at health center

By 
By
Jan. 23, 2008

Clouds were in the sky, but love was in the air last Friday, when Carmen Caban, 51, of Dorchester said, "I do" and married her longtime boyfriend, Luis Gonzalez. The wedding took place at Upham's Corner Health Center on Dorchester Avenue, where the newlyweds' lives have converged for two very different reasons.  Read more

Integration' for Boston schools takes on new meaning

When the Jeremiah Burke High School reopens in Grove Hall, students will come back to more than renovated classrooms. In addition to a new gym, there will be a new branch library and a new community center all in one setting.

The executive director of Project RIGHT in Grove Hall, Jorge Martinez, says he remembers when supporters of the library were nervous about giving up a safe haven on Crawford Street. More than a year after the groundbreaking for the $42 million project, says Martinez, the library's friends group is enlisting members to share a new safe haven with students.  Read more

Cleaning chemical fouls library site

A Blue Hill Avenue dry cleaner may be held responsible for the release of a toxic chemical called perchloroethylene into the groundwater underneath the construction site of the new Mattapan Library. The chemical is a suspected carcinogen and worse in large quantities, but city officials said the site poses no imminent health hazard to residents and will not delay the library's construction.

It might, however, have to be cleaned up.  Read more

Clinton-Obama camps prepare for Feb. 5 duel

Some of the rancor displayed in Monday's presidential debate at the congressional Black Caucus began to spill into Boston this week. And the race has come alive in the city's neighborhoods in just a week's time.

Speaker of the House Sal DiMasi, gathered with state and city leaders to discuss strategy, dropped a bomb on Gov. Deval Patrick's support of Barack Obama, intimating that the two shared a lack of experience, referencing Patrick's tumultuous first year in office.  Read more

Menino signals a shift in school models, zones

When the Jeremiah Burke High School reopens in Grove Hall, students will come back to more than renovated classrooms. In addition to a new gym, there will be a new branch library and a new community center all in one setting.

The executive director of Project RIGHT in Grove Hall, Jorge Martinez, says he remembers when supporters of the library were nervous about giving up a safe haven on Crawford Street. More than a year after the groundbreaking for the $42 million project, says Martinez, the library's friends group is enlisting members to share a new safe haven with students.  Read more

Anti-eviction activists form 'blockade' at Semont Rd. house

A crowd of around 30 housing activists and about half as many members of the local media surrounded 26 Semont Rd. on Wednesday morning, as the chant "Melonie! Melonie!" rang out along the street.

Melonie Griffiths-Evans and her husband were victims of an alleged predatory lending scam. After her husband left and the refinancing promised to her by the lenders and real estate agent never materialized, she couldn't afford the $3,500 a month mortgage. The property was foreclosed upon and she received a notice to evict.  Read more

Courthouse round-up: Love triangle alleged motive in first murder of the year in Dorchester

The first murder of the year was the result of a shootout that followed a baby shower, police said.

Rayon Gillespie, of Dorchester, was charged this week with murdering 23-year-old Joseph Clark on Jan. 6. Dorchester District Court Judge Kenneth Desmond ordered Gillespie, also 23, to be held without bail and that he return to court on Feb. 13.

Prosecutors told the court that Gillespie had been invited to a Norton St. baby shower, as had Clarke, who was romantically involved with a young pregnant woman.  Read more

Fairmount improvements trigger new building in Dot, Mattapan

A new commuter rail station at Four Corners is still about three years from becoming a reality, and design for one at Talbot Avenue is due to start next week, but hazy visions of the future are becoming clearer all the time in the neighborhoods along the Fairmount Line. New developments from local Community Development Corporations (CDCs) are clustering around the future stations, giving an early window on just how much Dorchester and Mattapan will be transformed by them.  Read more

At Cedar Grove Civic, a changing of the guard

By 
Martine Louis
Jan. 16, 2008

Cedar Grove Civic Association - now 75 years old and with over 400 members - is undoubtedly one of Boston's largest neighborhood associations. From organizing recreational services to awarding over $9,000 in educational scholarships each year, Cedar Grove Civic is the "heart and soul" of the nearby community, says John O'Toole, the group's former president.  Read more