Newtown was stunned with disbelief and then shattered with grief Friday as few tragic details of a mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School filtered out through authorities.
After parents and a gathering media corps waited for hours for some official word on shootings, Newtown Police and Connecticut State Police conducted a brief press conference at nearby Treadwell Park in the early afternoon to announce that the as-yet unidentified shooter was dead at the school.
All of Newtown’s schools, except the high school, ranked measurably higher than the state’s target goal according to the Department of Education’s new School Performance Index (SPI), an accountability system to assess school performance. And Newtown High School is performing just three-tenths of a percent below the target goal of 88 on a 1 to 100 scale, with a three-year average of 87.7.
The searchable database of all Connecticut’s 1,200-plus schools was made available Monday afternoon at 2 pm.
For at least a couple of days, westbound travelers on Elm Drive may have been confused by two detour signs that appeared to cancel out each other at the westerly intersection of Deep Brook Road. But after being alerted to the issue by The Bee, Public Works Director Fred Hurley explained that one of the signs directing drivers around an impending box culvert replacement near Dickinson Park was apparently installed incorrectly.
A large yellow excavator, which was manipulated by a heavy-equipment operator wearing snow-white coveralls, carefully plucked metallic material from a looming pile of aluminum dross for placement in a heavy dump truck.
That truck would cart away the industrial waste from the site of the abandoned Charles Batchelder Company on Swamp Road in Botsford.
Police are asking for information about vandalism to roughly ten headstones at Village Cemetery overlooking Elm Drive. The vandalism, which left several stones cracked and others toppled, occurred between December 6 and December 9.
Upset with the news, Newtown Village Cemetery Association Head of Grounds and Maintenance Milt Adams called the act “disgraceful” and “so disheartening.”
Pete Barresi, left, and Chuck Kilson, both of whom are Sandy Hook Volunteer Fire & Rescue Company firefighters, this week recalled an accident that occurred on Monday on a fire call during Storm Sandy, in which a massive tree fell onto the cab of a fire truck occupied by Mr Kilson, who narrowly escaped injury in the incident.
Weaving together history lessons with summer camping fun were, from left, Maren Brady, Isaiah Williams, George Sandecox, and Matthew Grenier. The group made baskets, marbles, hats, ice cream, and butter Tuesday during the weeklong summer history camp at the Newtown Historical Society’s Matthew Curtiss House.
Newtown preparedness, emergency, utility, and health officials met Tuesday afternoon to solidify plans for both public and behind-the-scenes activities that will play out locally, as part of a statewide disaster drill simulating an imminent Category 3 hurricane, its landfall, and aftermath, July 28 through 31.
Commencement speakers at Western Connecticut State University’s O’Neill Center on Wednesday, June 20, said it again and again: the Newtown High School Class of 2012 is a class with a wide range of abilities and accomplishments.
“We welcome you tonight to the graduation ceremony of Newtown High School,” said NHS Principal Charles Dumais after this year’s graduating class made its way into the building, past a line of teachers, and through a cloud of applause.