The Newtown Public Schools Recovery Project has slated its next parent forums, which will take place at Sandy Hook Elementary School and Middle Gate Elementary School. The Sandy Hook School Parent Forums, “Helping Manage Challenging Behaviors and Discussions with Your Child” and “Informational Session for Sandy Hook Parents with Connecticut Office of Victim Services,” are set for Monday, February 24. The Middle Gate Parent Forum, “Effective Problem-Solving Skills,” will be offered in two sessions on Tuesday, February 25, and will be facilitated by Eileen Donnelly Phillips, LCSW, of Wellmore Behavioral Health.
Inside Newtown High School’s cafeteria on the evening of Monday, February 10, two groups of students faced off in a “USA vs Russia” foam hockey game. As NHS Guidance Counselor Jeff Tolson pointed out, the gold medal from the game was not going to go to the first place team or player, but instead it would be given out to distinguish the players with the best sportsmanship. It was one of the many exercises completed by students in the REACH (Resiliency, Empathy, Acceptance, Confidence, Hope) Newtown program, and one of three workshops offered February 10. That night had an Olympics theme. For each REACH Newtown program meeting, students in second through eighth grades are paired with mentors in ninth through twelfth grades. Those mentors work with the younger students during an exercise session, a homework session, and an art session for each meeting. REACH also has “field trips” or “REACH out expeditions” scheduled for weekends, said Mr Carley, but, mostly, the students meet twice a week in the evenings after school. The current session of REACH will run through mid-March. Another is set to run between March and June.
In order to make Newtown High School’s upcoming production of "Peter Pan" fly, organizers are looking at funding alternatives, including an online fundraising page and corporate sponsors for the musical. "Peter Pan" is scheduled for March 20-23, and professional equipment will be brought in to bring the story’s magic to life on the NHS stage. In order to afford the equipment and professional assistance to install the equipment, however, further funding is needed.
Newtown International Center for Education (NICE) members reflected on a visit by a delegation from Liaocheng, China, from January 24 to February 2, with The Bee this week.
“It was incredible,” said Lisa Berger, president of the NICE Parent Community Organization (NICE PCO), on February 2, the day after delegates left to return to China.
Ms Berger said she was still overwhelmed by the excitement of the delegates’ stay. The delegation included 29 students and 11 adults, administrators, and educators from China, according to Ms Berger. About 30 host families offered up their homes for the delegates to stay in during the visit.
With an eye toward the Winter Guard International (WGI) championships in Dayton, Ohio, in early April, the Newtown High School Varsity Winter Guard competed in its first WGI Regional Championship in Salem, Mass., on Saturday, February 8.
Scoring a solid 62.2, the 16-member team walked away with the First Place trophy for the Scholastic Open Division, and gained both experience and insight into what the judges are looking for. Instructor Janos Pergely was pleased with the feedback heard from the judges, saying he was delighted that judges liked Newtown’s show “Whirlwind.”
The Newtown Public School Recovery Project is sponsoring two upcoming parent forums, one at Newtown Middle School and the other at Hawley Elementary School. Both are being offered with morning and evening sessions, and all sessions are being done on February 20.The first forum, called “Building Resiliency in Yourself and Your Children,” will teach attendees how to better prepare themselves and their families to navigate life’s stressors and challenges by building inner-strength and resiliency. The second forum, “Parenting Using Positive Discipline Techniques,” will share positive discipline techniques that give parents the tools needed to help with daily challenges.
Prepared with love from Sandy Hook School students were 44 boxes of Valentine wishes and goods going to service men and women overseas.
With the help of Newtown’s Post Master Cathy Zieff, Supervisor Richard Crowther, and postal carrier David Link, students, parents, and school staff on Friday, February 7, readied packages in an annual Valentines For Troops effort at Sandy Hook School, currently housed at Monroe’s Chalk Hill Middle School.
Victoria Chop placed decorative stickers on the boxes, and thought about whether she would write a valentine to a troop member. Preparing the packages “was fun,” she said.
Students Saahil Ray, Brandon Wong, and sisters Shannon and Jackie Hegarty were also placing stamps and stickers on the boxes Friday.
Event Co-Chair Barb Sibley said that the program, which they changed last year to send valentines to 12/14 first responders, has resumed its packages for troops this year. The Sandy Hook PTA-sponsored event saw boxes filled with students’ handmade valentines, rainbow bracelets, magazines, and more. VFW Post 308 donated cookies.
A gathering and ceremony was held on Tuesday, February 4, in Newtown High School’s cafetorium to honor students who have completed graduation requirements midyear.
The event marked the completion of high school education for 19 students: Sabrina Brereton, Nathan Brown, Domingos Cabeleira, Kacey Caplan, Jessica Debreceni, Gabrielle Deri, Olivia Dib, Anna Claire Guaragno, Lena Harris, Nicholas Marcinek, Emily Pieretti, Jesie Rojas, Charles Shepard, Matthew Villamana, Colin Wagner, Veronica Webb, Robert Willis, David Witkowski, and Madison Woodward. Some students did not attend the ceremony, but have still completed graduation requirements...
The Newtown High School Varsity Winter Guard and guard parents have scheduled three upcoming events.An NHS Varsity Winter Guard Pasta Supper and Silent Auction has been scheduled for Friday, February 21, from 5:30 to 7:30 pm, at Newtown United Methodist Church; the annual Winter Guard Extravaganza will be March 1 at Newtown High School; and wine and beer tasting event is planned for March 14 at Edmond Town Hall.
The Children’s Adventure Center, Riverside Road, on Wednesday, January 29, accepted a work of art sent to the town in memory of the first anniversary of 12/14. Given by the school community of the Guadalupe Regional Middle School (GRMS) and the city of Brownsville, Texas, the simple painting is meant to convey the theme of children’s never-ending play, according to GRMS art teacher, Jennifer Rose.
“This theme was chosen to celebrate the young and playful innocence of children,” Ms Rose explained in a letter that accompanied the gift...