Dear Hunnewell,

Based on the report to the NRC and town arborist, Cricket Vlass, the School Committee voted unanimously to remove the Hunnewell White Oak Tree in our center courtyard. While we are sad to lose the tree, the safety of our students, staff, and building takes priority.

Earlier today, I met with Superintendent Lussier, members of FMD, and the DPW to discuss plans for the removal of the tree. The tree will be taken down this weekend and the circular drive and staff parking lot will be closed off during the removal to insure the safety of the workers and pedestrians. We are hoping that we will be able to save some large cross sections and limbs of the tree, so that they can be milled and crafted into several items that will memorialize and celebrate the life of this majestic tree. Many people have wonderful suggestions for the use of the wood and we will be sure to capture all of the ideas before making final decisions. Peter Knapp attended the meeting this morning, and is considering some art projects for the students, too.

I also thank all who have shared beautiful photos of the tree with me. We will see if we might be able to do something with those as well.

The students are aware that the tree will be removed and while they are disappointed, they understood that safety is our first priority.

I thank you for your patience and flexibility in using the 1938 entrance for the past week. I am anticipating we will be back to our original arrival and dismissal patterns on Monday, and will confirm that decision, once I have the all clear from the DPW and FMD.

Enjoy your weekend!

Ellen


Hunnewell Oak Tree

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