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Receiver Officially Takes Charge Of Holyoke Schools


The Massachusetts state appointed receiver for the Holyoke Public Schools officially started on the job Monday.

As receiver, Stephen Zrike has the combined authority of a local school committee and school superintendent to both establish policy and implement it. 

Zrike, with input from a local stakeholders group, will produce a turnaround plan for the Holyoke schools by the end of summer.

" I don't come with a blueprint in my pocket on this is how we are going to do it here," he said.

During his first day on the job, Zrike was scheduled to meet parents and children at the kickoff to a summer reading program.  The Massachusetts board of education took the extraordinary step in April to place the Holyoke schools in receivership because of chronically low student test scores.

The record-setting tenure of Springfield Mayor Domenic Sarno. The 2011 tornado and its recovery that remade the largest city in Western Massachusetts. The fallout from the deadly COVID outbreak at the Holyoke Soldiers Home. Those are just a few of the thousands and thousands of stories WAMC’s Pioneer Valley Bureau Chief Paul Tuthill has covered for WAMC in his nearly 17 years with the station.