There are 140 nonnative English speakers in the public schools across the Island, the highest count in recent memory. Most are second generation U.S. residents. Educators are responding by setting a standard for excellence in learning.

A general meeting of the Island Parents Advisory Council on Special Education begins at 6:30 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 13 at the Martha’s Vineyard Regional High School culinary dining room.

Philip E. Campbell, former director of pupil services in the Auburn schools, took over as the new director for student support services in November. Islandwide, 450 students receive special education services.

The Department of Education will offer a new high school equivalency test in place of the GED. The Vineyard high school, which has administered the test since the 1970s, is preparing for the changes.

There’s a rising star among the new faculty members at the Martha’s Vineyard Regional High School.


They are called guinea pigs, seven promising middle school students in Edgartown who are testing the proposition that learning algebra early will let them reach greater math heights in high school. Now educators in other Island schools are mulling ways to bring their own students up to speed.