Henry W. Burbine, 72, of
Plymouth. Was an MTA field
representative for 39 years in the
Raynham office. Among other duties
for the MTA, he assisted locals in
the negotiating of contracts, handling
grievances and strengthening union
relationships. March 11.
Sandra J. Dobratz, 69, of
Plymouth. Was an educator in Carver
for 40 years. Feb. 11.
Clare E. Langer, 87, of Adams.
Was an elementary school teacher for
the Adams-Cheshire Regional School
District in Adams until retiring in
1985. Jan. 22.
Jane E. Nerney, 72, of North
Attleborough. Taught special education
and administration in Fall River and
Attleborough for more than 32 years.
Dr. Joseph S. Nicastro,
95, of Quincy. Retired assistant
superintendent and director of
vocational education for King Philip
Regional School District. Former
teacher and administrator for Quincy
Public Schools. Past treasurer of the
Quincy Education Association. Nov. 6.
Eleanor Palais, 83, of Lexington.
Was a mathematics teacher at Belmont
High School, retiring after 32 years.
Joan E. Rivers, 67, of North
Adams. Was a teacher in the North
Adams school system for many years.
Betty Robichau, 98, of
Edgartown. Taught first grade for
many years, retiring in 1979. Jan. 23.
They also debated a bill on
immigration that would forbid
colleges from offering state and
federal financial aid to undocumented
immigrants and increase quotas for
immigrants skilled in areas such as
science and technology, where the
need for workers is high.
They caucused in breakout rooms
according to party and presented
amendments. Then they tried to sell
their amendments to colleagues on
the other side of the aisle. Two of the
amendments — calling for a quicker
path to citizenship for immigrants
who could fill high-need jobs and a
restriction on work visas for those in
service or farm-sector jobs — passed.
Two acting senators from each
party spoke on the bill, using their own
words and arguments. They were aided
by the tablet computers, which the
participants kept with them at all times
and which offered cues to the positions
that the senators they were portraying
would take. Republicans even prepared
When the roll was called, they
voted. Strong calls of “Aye!” from the
life-skills special education students
drew an ovation from both sides.
“I’ve done some mock sessions
in my classes,” Whittier said, “but
nothing like this.”
Two days later, 45 more Sutton
High School sophomores, juniors and
seniors visited. The 2½-hour sessions
“were so fast-paced that the time
passed very quickly,” Whittier said.
Back at school, Whittier surveyed
his students and collected comments
on the visits. Among them were the
n “It was great to go through the
actions ourselves. It taught me so
n “I learned about the process of
passing a bill and how long it takes.”
n “A great educational time for
n “It has taught me the importance
of compromise and encouraged me to
Even the superintendent offered his
own equally unqualified opinion. “We
should do this every year,” he said.
Did you know?
• Teachers in Massachusetts are not eligible to
collect Social Security disability benefits.
Don’t wait until it’s too late.
Get the paycheck insurance you need with
MTA disability plans.
Open enrollment for 2015 ends May 15.
Call 877.401.4083 to find out more.
A Disability Can
Come Out of