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Hamlin Robinson School buys Oberto site for new middle school


A North Beacon Hill landmark is getting a new owner and a new purpose.

Hamlin Robinson School is buying the building that now houses the Oberto factory store at 1715 Rainier Ave. S.

Hamlin Robinson, a nonprofit school specializing in teaching kids with dyslexia and other language-based learning differences, plans to build a middle school on the site.

The school, in existence since 1983, has seen growing need for its services and needs more space. It currently enrolls 280 students in first through eighth grades in a building right behind the current Oberto site. In addition to its full-time students, it offers public tutoring services and conducts professional development training of educators at both public and private schools.

“In three years, our enrollment has grown so fast that we reached capacity five years ahead of schedule and demand continues to grow,” said Stacy Turner, head of school. “We knew that we would have to think about a second location and the Oberto property across the street was the perfect solution.”

The new building, scheduled to open for the 2022-23 school year, will offer three floors of learning space for the middle-school grades, plus more space that will be part of the school's goal of beoming a regional hub for dyslexia services.

“The sale of this property to Hamlin Robinson School builds on the value my parents, Art and Dorothy Oberto, placed on education. They believed that all kids can have success in the future with good, quality early learning,” said Steve Oberto. The Oberto Factory Store has been a landmark in the North Beacon Hill neighborhood for more than 70 years.



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Julie Hanson