Newtown Middle School’s Student Council is gearing up for its 2015 Student Council Food Drive. The group collects items each year for Women Involved in Newtown (WIN) and its annual Thanksgiving Baskets campaign. Other local schools also collect for the campaign. On Monday, September 28, the council members briefly discussed the upcoming collection, before another meeting on Monday, October 12, will really set the collection for the middle school. Items will be collected at NMS this year from October 16 to November 20. In addition to students being encouraged to bring items to their homeroom each morning during the collection period, the public can drop off donation items at the school’s main office weekdays. A collection bin will also be placed in the school’s lobby for family members to use.
The school district’s PTAs, PTSA, and Newtown Prevention Council are sponsoring a presentation by Scott Driscoll for local parents, "Empowering Smart Online Choices," on Tuesday, October 13, at Newtown Middle School.
"Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory" was shown on a screen in Hawley Elementary School’s gymnasium on Friday, September 25, for the school’s Indoor Movie Night. Roughly 200 people signed up to attend the event, according to PTA President Kristen Bonacci. Just before the movie began, families were spread out in the gymnasium on blankets with dinner and snacks.
Newtown Middle School art teacher Leigh Anne Coles has set up a DonorsChoose fundraising campaign to acquire four Google Chromebooks for students to use. Ms Coles said on Thursday, October 8, the goal is to raise $814 for four Chromebooks. While the fundraising project will continue unto January, DonorsChoose is matching donations dollar for dollar for the next four days when donor use the code SPARK at checkout.
The Newtown Education Foundation held an open public forum on Monday, October 5, at Reed Intermediate School. Kristen Bonacci and Casey Ragan, two of NEF’s three co-founders, spoke about how the foundation came about and answered questions about what the foundation will do during the forum. Ms Bonacci said the idea to start NEF came from the experience the three founders, which also include Aaron Carlson, had with also starting the recent Support Our Schools (SOS) campaign. A number of surrounding towns, according to Ms Bonacci, have Education Foundations. During the recent summer months, Ms Bonacci said, work was done to look into starting a foundation in Newtown.
The Newtown High School Nighthawks Marching Band & Guard is set to host the 19th Annual Joseph P. Grasso Music Festival Saturday, October 10, at the high school’s Blue & Gold Stadium.
Gates open at 5 pm and the show begins at 6 pm.
Tickets are $10 for adults, $5 for students and seniors, and admission is free for children under 5 years old. The event is the largest fundraiser for the NHS Marching Band & Guard program.
The NHS “Home Show” will feature eight Connecticut high school marching bands vying for top scores in the USBands competition. The Nighthawks will perform an exhibition of their award-winning show “Pharoah’s Legacy.”
For the third year, high school students in nineth through twelfth grade are being encouraged to enter the Voice of Democracy audio-essay competition through the Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) Post 308.
Patriot Pen and Voice of Democracy Chairperson Donna Monteleone Randle is hopeful a Newtown student will advance through the levels of the competition to the national level this year. The odds, she explained, are fair.
“If you win the Newtown post, then you go to the district,” Ms Randle said.
Newtown High School Marching Band & Guard President Michele Buzzi said this year’s 100 Family Tag Sale, held annually to support the band and guard, was “one of our biggest years yet.”
The tag sale was conducted at NHS on Saturday, September 26, in the school's cafeteria and in the cafeteria’s courtyard.
An hour into the event people were milling about the cafeteria and courtyard, searching through piles of clothes, inspecting bicycles for sale, and scanning other items, like toys.
Newtown Historical Society representatives opened the Little Red Schoolhouse on the grounds of Middle Gate Elementary School on Sunday, September 20, to conduct classes inside the historic schoolhouse and offer recess activities on the lawn. Costumed docents welcomed the participants for class just after 12:30 pm. The event was held for children between 5 and 10 years old. Docents shared details of what learning in the 1700s to 1800s would have been like, including punishments students would have had for poor behavior, games that would have been played, and the type of lessons that would have been taught.