Newtown High School 2014 graduate and the recipient of this year’s Middle Gate PTA Scholarship Bethany Dubois spoke to students at Middle Gate’s awards assembly on Wednesday, June 18. “I was sitting in this very gym,” Bethany said, looking around her, “…eight years ago.” Bethany told the assembled third and fourth grade students about how she was nervous when she first came to Middle Gate in third grade, after moving from New Jersey. Looking back, Bethany said she had no need to be nervous, because she found, “by far, Middle Gate kids are the nicest people I have ever met.”
Newtown Middle School held its culminating awards ceremony in two sessions on Friday, June 13, due to the weather forcing the event inside. For the second session, eighth grade students at the school found a space on the bleachers or on set-up chairs in the school’s main gymnasium. A number of selected students sang the national anthem to begin the event. Students were recognized with awards they earned during the 2013-14 school year during the assembly, for completing achievements during the year, and for participating in different efforts, like being morning announcers at the school.
Newtown Youth & Family Services, Inc., will again be offering a week long program for children entering kindergarten called “Safety Town” in July. Safety Town is a national program that was developed in 1964 to teach young children important information on traffic safety, fire safety, water safety, bus safety, bicycle safety, awareness of medicine and poison, and awareness of strangers. All safety topics will be taught in collaboration with local community and health agencies. Cost is $25 per child for the one-week program, and financial assistance is available.
Newtown Historical Society is currently accepting applications for its 2014 Summer History Camp. The camp will be hosted at The Matthew Curtiss House, 44 Main Street, the week of July 14-18. Registration is open for children between the ages of 8-10 and offers campers a week of interactive and exciting experiences of Colonial-era life. From lantern-making to butter churning, kids will engage in activities and experiences of a Colonial child living during the 1750s. Campers will learn the tasks they might have been expected to do at home, the types of games they would have played, and the kind of food they would have eaten during the mid-18th Century.
Retired Newtown Assistant Principal Anthony Salvatore, Newtown Federation of Teachers President Tom Kuroski, and Sandy Hook School teacher Liesl Fressola traveled to Emporia, Kan., for the dedication ceremony, held on Thursday, June 12, of a Memorial to Fallen Educators.
The memorial was created by the National Teachers Hall of Fame, and will permanently recognize more than 100 United States educators who have lost their lives while fulfilling their educational duties, according to a release from the American Federation of Teachers.
When Jo-Ann Peters-Edmonson arrived in the district in mid-1998, Hawley Elementary School was still a kindergarten through fifth grade institution. Different areas of the building were used for classrooms at the time, like the multipurpose room and the lower level of the building’s 1921 section. The latest addition to the building had just been built and finished in 1997. A retirement party was held for her at Roberto’s Restaurant in Monroe on April 10. Her family, friends, family members, and Hawley community members attended. Members of the Hawley PTA were there along with former superintendents of schools John Reed and Evan Pitkoff, and Board of Education member John Vouros.
The Scholarship Committee of Newtown Visiting Nurse Association recently presented three scholarship checks to students who have met requirements for their respective honors. On June 5, members of the committee presented the final $4,000 Anna E. Clow Scholarship check to Abigail Blakeman. On June 10 Newtown VNA presented two more scholarship checks to students it had promised awards. Erin Begg received a $4,000 VNA Scholarship check, and Meredith Bridges received a $2,500 Janice Van Syckle Scholarship award.
It was Spirit Day at Head O’ Meadow School, Friday, June 6, and school pride was evident, from hair dyed to match class T-shirts, to painted faces and colorful wigs, and a hillside painted to read “There’s No Place Like HOM!”As grades kindergarten through four thronged the playing field behind the school, ready to take part in the ten fun events set up by dozens of parent volunteers, Coach Steve Dreger took a moment to explain the significance of the day.
During its final meeting of the school year, on Monday, June 9, members of the Hawley Kids Care Club had a surprise for retiring Principal Jo-Ann Peters-Edmondson.
The Kids Care Club meets once a month before school, and it has spent the school year doing helpful activities for the community. According to co-advisor and Hawley parent Lisa Burbank and a number of the club’s students, projects this school year have included gathering donations for the town Social Services food bank, hosting a toy drive for daycare centers in need in Bridgeport, creating Hearts of Hope, and crafting butterflies as gifts for school teachers.
In two sessions, students at Sandy Hook Elementary School took part in their school’s Field Day, held on Thursday, June 12. By the time the third and fourth grade students had made their way out to the back field at Monroe’s Chalk Hill Middle School, mud was forming. The younger grades participated in their Field Day later in the day. Sandy Hook School physical education teacher Jaclyn Lloyd said ten stations were set up for the event, and students made their way through the stations with their classes. The classes spent less than a quarter of an hour at each station.