October 20th E-Blast

From: Mary C. Gormley
To: Parents/Guardians and Staff
Re: E-blast Update
Date:  Friday, October 20th, 2017

Great news! Our new Milton Public Schools website is now live.

Please visit it HERE to see all the terrific new features!


I wanted to again highlight a letter that I sent yesterday regarding Milton Public Schools Next Generation MCAS results. In school year 2016-17, Massachusetts implemented a new state assessment for all students in Grades 3-8, known as the next-generation MCAS in both English language arts and mathematics. This new assessment was developed after the Board of Elementary and Secondary Education voted in November 2015 to create a next-generation, computer-based, and Massachusetts-specific test. They found that despite being the top public school system in the nation, we still send students to college who need remedial courses to catch up and engage in college-level work.  Please click here for the rest of this important communication.


There have been no School Committee meetings since my last E-blast. The next meeting will be held Wednesday, October 25th at 7 pm in the Milton TV Access studio, Room 245, Milton High School.

The following item was submitted by Steve Paxhia of the Strategic Planning Sub-Committee:

The School Committee has appointed a strategic planning sub-committee to develop a process for analyzing significant opportunities and challenges that will have an impact on the school district over the next two to five years.  The sub-committee has strived to include the ideas and input of teachers, parents and guardians, school leaders and outside experts.  After gathering feedback from all stakeholders, the sub-committee has chosen the following topics for the first phase of the planning process:  curriculum, inclusion, cultural competence, the impact of technology on instruction and learning, and the role of data in helping, teachers, students, schools, administrators, and the School Committee to be more effective in their roles.

The sub-committee is leading the efforts of stakeholders in developing a new mission statement for the district that should be approved by the School Committee shortly.  Task forces are being assembled to develop and implement plans  for each of the five topics mentioned above.  The ultimate goal is to develop an ongoing process to consider annually what factors are likely to have the greatest impact on the school district and to develop clear action plans to take advantage of opportunities and to anticipate and resolve challenges.


The following item was submitted from Martine Fisher, Director of World Languages:

This past month we celebrated National Hispanic Heritage Month in Elementary Spanish classes. This important celebration pays tribute to the generations of Hispanic Americans who have positively influenced and enriched our nation and society: The breadth of Latino/a experience is a vital aspect of America’s rich and diverse past (See National Hispanic Heritage Month introduction posted on the Library of Congress site here).  Multiple national and cultural institutions such as the Library of Congress, the National Endowment for the Humanities, the National Gallery of Art, the Smithsonian Institution and United States Holocaust Memorial Museum have joined their efforts to highlight and celebrate the rich and diverse contributions of the Hispanic community to our society. The months of September and October have symbolic and historic significance as they mark the anniversary of independence of numerous Latin American countries such as Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, Mexico and Chile.

In our four elementary schools, Spanish students participated, at all levels, in this celebration through a wide range of language, Social Studies, cultural and artistic activities. Some activities were directly linked to our Language Arts curriculum, such as the reading and discussion of Biblioburro. This is an inspiring book relating the true story of a Colombian grade-school teacher and librarian who brings books — on donkeys’ backs — to the children of remote villages of Colombia. The English version of this famous book is available through the new REACH classroom libraries. Some activities were more directly linked to Social Studies lessons. Our fourth graders, through classroom research, learned about the historical and cultural connections of Southwestern states with the Spanish language and Hispanic cultures.  After studying the names of natural and political features of California, Arizona and New Mexico, students had to translate the name of famous places such as Sierra Nevada, Rio Grande and Santa Fe. Fifth graders also learned through research about famous Hispanic Americans whose great contributions have enriched the world of art, literature, music, politics, public service, medicine and athletics throughout history. Art projects were numerous and included the interpretation of a painting from Carmen Lomas Garza whose work illustrates the everyday events in the lives of Mexican Americans, a craft project on Biblioburro, and the creation of a heritage collage in the style of Maria Castagliola, an American painter born in Cuba.


The following was submitted by Karen Cahill, Director of guidance:

We are pleased to share the news that two of our Milton High School students, Regina Scott and Sawyer Flanagan qualified as Semifinalists for the 2018 National Merit Scholarships  in recognition of their exceptional academic promise demonstrated by their outstanding performance on the qualifying PSAT test. These two students will continue on in the competition for National Merit Scholarships to be offered next spring. These students are among the highest scoring entrants in the state.

In addition, fifteen Milton High School students are being recognized as Commended Students in the 2018 National Merit Scholarship Program. Please join me in congratulating all of these exceptional students. (Not pictured: Robert Dexter)


Come see our talented students in PIPPIN,  the Milton High School Fall Musical on November 2nd at 7pm & November 4th at 2pm  and 7pm in the MHS Auditorium. Tickets are $10 and can be purchased in the MHS main office, at the door or online and you can meet the cast in a great video here.


I would like to take this opportunity to inform you of recent transfers and new personnel in key areas of the Milton Public Schools. Please click here for details on changes in personnel.  I am sure you will join me in welcoming these new talented individuals and congratulating our current employees who have assumed new responsibilities.


If you have not had a chance to visit the new Milton Public Schools website, please do!

Tips on navigating the new website: to visit individual school websites, click on the “Our Schools” link in the top right corner. To minimize the school’s bar, click anywhere on the MPS website. Are you having trouble remembering the web address to PlusPortal? The link to the Portal can be found in the top right corner of the new website.

Would you like to have the Portal on your handheld device? Please follow the links below to add the ParentPlus or StudentPlus app to your device.

For Apple Devices

For Android Devices

In order to add your student’s school(s) in the app, search: Collicot Elementary School, Cunningham Elementary School, Glover School, Milton High School, Pierce Middle School,Tucker School


Thanks to the support of the Milton Community, I am pleased to announce that our MHS Hurricane Relief Concert, organized by the Tri-M Music Honor Society of MHS  raised almost six thousand dollars for the Hurricane Relief Efforts!  The ConPRmetidos fund will be receiving a check from the Milton High School Student Activities Account in the amount of $5,830.81.  Those who still wish to donate to the fund can do so here.  Please watch the attached video to see how these funds will aid in the relief efforts.


The following item was submitted by the Meena Tondravi from the Tucker School PTO:

The Tucker Cares program kicked off their 1st initiative this week with a donation of hand- tied  fleece blankets to the Milton Animal Shelter. Students and their parents made blankets and homemade frozen dog treats at Tucker.  In addition, a team of volunteers went  to the animal shelter to rake the shelter’s yard and help with a fall clean up.  The animal shelter volunteers and Nancy Bersani were so grateful for the students’ efforts and it was a great experience for our students.  They were featured on Channel 5 news , linked here.


The following item was submitted by Dawn Sykes, Director of Fine and Applied Arts:

On Saturday, October 14th, members of the Milton High School Mixed Chorus kicked off the Milton Council on Aging (COA) Fit for Life Walk with a performance of the Star Spangled Banner.  The event raised money for the Milton COA Transportation Fund, which underwrites the cost of COA vans that drive Milton senior citizens to medical appointments, the grocery store and other local errands.

Kaleigh Pentland, Penelope Holland, Annabel Botsford, Grace Varela, Michael Swanton, Dominik Hyppolite, and James DiSandro

Kaleigh Pentland, Penelope Holland, Annabel Botsford, Grace Varela, Michael Swanton, Dominik Hyppolite, and James DiSandro


Circle-S has changed the start date of the Sibling Support group to October 30th in hopes that two to three more families will register. This is a great resource that we are lucky to have hosted locally. However, it is also open to families in other communities, so please share with anyone who may be interested.

Please see the flyer below to learn about this amazing new resource for Milton families. Starting on October 30th, the Circle-S program will provide a family-focused support group for parents of children with disabilities and their “typically-developing” siblings between the ages of 6 and 18. The program will meet on Monday evenings and run for 8 weeks from 6 to 8pm. Dinner will be served and the program is free. The program is being sponsored by Joanna’s Place.  For more information and to register see the attached flyer here.


Throughout the year, the Pupil Personnel Services Department sends emails regarding SEPAC news, events and district wide information. If you have not received these emails and would like to be on the email list, please contact Tracy Grandeau, the Administrator of Pupil Personnel Services at tgrandeau@miltonps.org


The SEPAC held its second Board meeting of the year on the 17th at Glover Elementary School. In addition to reviewing the Bylaws and State Open Meeting law, members discussed upcoming informational, social and community activities. Our first event is currently planned for November 7 and will take place at Boston Sensory Solutions on Granite Street in Milton. The evening will bring together a number of local service providers from various disciples including occupational therapy, speech therapy, behavioral therapies, and more. Parents will be able to mingle with providers and other parents to find out about available resources in the community, ask questions, and meet other parents and professionals working with the special education community. A full list of participating providers and additional details will be available soon. Our next Board meeting is scheduled for November 28 from 7 pm to 9 pm in the library at Glover Elementary School.


The following item was submitted by the Milton Foundation for Education:

Monster Dash is right around the corner!  We hope that you will join us for the 19th Annual Monster Dash 5K and Kids Fun Run in loving memory of Sam Cichello and supporting science enrichment in all six Milton Public Schools. Online Registration will close at 4:30 pm on Friday October 27th and don’t forget that only the first 500 registered runners for the 5K will get our great race bag and coveted t-shirt with the award winning design by Lia Duran (9) of Tucker Elementary School.  Pre-registered runners can pick up their numbers and bags on Saturday October 28th at Cunningham Hall from 1 to 4 pm.  Registration and bag pick up will open at 9 am on race day, October 29th, at Cunningham Hall.  The kids activities will get started at 10 am with the costume contest at 10:15 and the 5K will kick off at 11 am.  You can find the registration link here. Don’t forget your costumes!  We can’t wait to see you all there.


The following item was submitted by the Milton Department of Health:

Information on the Milton Health Department’s Flu Clinic, Thursday, October 19th, 4:30pm to 6:30pm at Council on Aging can be found here.

The following item was submitted from Allan Bishop from the DPW :

There are three Yard Waste Collections in November! November 1st, 2nd, 15th,16th, 29th & 30th.

The following item was sent to us by Bob McCrystal from BID Hospital- Milton:

The Beth Israel Deaconess Hospital-Milton Fall Community Education Program is about to get underway. Please join us for the following programs. All sessions are open to the community, free and held in the Nangeroni Education Center. To pre-register, call (617) 696-8810. Click here for program details.

The following item was sent to us by Karla Rosenstein, Site Manager of the Eustis Estate:

The Eustis Estate is partnering with the Wakefield Estate here in Milton and the Bradley Estate in Canton to encourage people to see our landscapes during peak fall foliage. Details can be found here.

The following item is from the Milton Public Library website:

In addition to our ongoing reading programs, the Children’s Room offers children’s programming almost every single day.  Check out our children’s calendar to see what’s coming up next.  To see a complete listing of library events, please click here.

The following item was sent to us by The Milton Substance Abuse Prevention Coalition:

Run or walk Mike’s 5K to Crush Substance Abuse On October 21st! This is our inaugural 5K to raise money for substance abuse prevention and treatment programs. We are running in memory of Mike Mulcahy, a proud Miltonian and lover of the outdoors, who passed away in December 2016 after a heroic battle against addiction. Mike wants us to CRUSH substance abuse!  MHS/Pierce students run for free! Email nvigue@miltonps.org to join a MPS team or non students can register here.

The following item was sent to us by Kevin J Cook – USN (Ret.), Director of Veterans Services, Shared Services District of Milton and Randolph:

Veteran’s Day is approaching and below is a  #MyVeteran flyer you can share with your students. This is an important way we can share Veterans Day commemoration with our Milton Students.  Each student is invited to  submit a picture and a short paragraph on their Veteran (Dad, Mom, Sister, Brother, Grandparent etc).   The flyer can be found here.

The following item was sent to us by John Allen from First Congregational Church:

The time has come to name your Volunteers of the Year. As a reminder, please nominate an individual, or a group of individuals who worked on something together.  The nominees will all be honored at the annual Milton Interfaith Organization “Thanks-for-Giving Service” on November 19 at 4PM.  They will also be acknowledged in the Milton Times.

The deadline to submit nominations is October 27. This is to ensure we have time to get the nominees names into the newspaper in advance of the event. Each nomination should also include a short statement of no more than 50 word  about why the person has been nominated.  Please send your information directly to john@fccmilton.org.

The following item was sent to us by Gwen Labbe, Dir of Education, Milton Historical Society:

We have an exciting event coming up on October 26th featuring “Songs of the Revolution.” Please click here for details.

The following item was sent to us by The Milton Playground Planners:

The Milton Playground Planners are hosting their 2nd and final masquerade ball and silent auction Oct 21. Tickets can be found here.


The following item was sent to us by Ryan Madden, Director of Athletics:

I am pleased to announce the appointment of our new Milton High School Varsity Baseball Coach, Mr. Brendan Morrissey. Mr. Morrissey, a former Milton High School student and athlete, is a graduate of Saint Anselm College where he earned a B.A. in Criminal Justice.  He currently works for the Boston Public Schools.  For the last five years he has been a Head Coach for Milton Knights Baseball and the Braintree Baseball Club.  He recently joined the staff at Catholic Memorial School as an Assistant Baseball Coach, as well as coaching their middle school team.  This past summer, Mr. Morrissey was also the Head Coach of the Milton Junior Legion Baseball Team.

Mr. Morrissey is an excellent communicator, and is passionate about both the game of baseball, and teaching young our student-athletes.  He has already demonstrated his commitment by his work with the youth programs and his initiative with starting the Milton Junior Legion Team.

Please join me in welcoming Mr. Morrissey to the Milton High School Coaching Staff. He has the knowledge and skill set that are required for success, and we are very optimistic that Mr. Morrissey will bring our baseball program to a new level.

Our Football Team got off to a slow start on Friday, but fought back to beat Walpole 36-28 in a thrilling back-and-forth game.  Thank you to all the parents and volunteers who helped make Senior Night special as the Football, Cheer, and Band Seniors were honored before the game and during halftime.  Our Best Buddies Program had a blast and thanks all those for their support as well.  They will take on Norwood on Saturday at 1pm at Norwood High School.  This is the last regular season game before playoffs begin, as the Wildcats battle for the top spots in Division IV.

Check out our Milton High School Athletics Twitter for all the latest scores, news and highlights!

For sports schedules for all MHS teams, please click here.


The following item was sent to us by Milos Nikolic, Program Director, Friends of Milton Crew:

Please come to cheer for Milton Crew at the Head of the Charles on October 22nd, Sunday. Our girls and boys will race in the following events:

Event 36: Women’s Youth Fours  8:53AM

Olivia Shapiro, Miwa Joiner, Frances Collins, Alexandra Kelly, Lilja Cormack

Event 41: Men’s Youth Fours 11:36AM

Isaac Savona, Timothy Karoff, Henry McKay, Dawson “Jasper” Malcolm, Emmett Kibbee

A good place to watch the race is at the Riverside Boat Club (RBC). There is a parking lot right across from the RBC boathouse. If you prefer to watch the race from some other location there is a shuttle bus that stops right in front of the RBC. Here is the HOCR map.


As part of our E-blast, we highlight students, teachers and members of the community whose hard work deserves recognition.  Please read about some of their outstanding accomplishments below:

Students: I would like to thank the many students who organized and performed in this week’s benefit concert, especially the Tri-M Music Honor Society of MHS.  Featured ensembles included the MHS Chorus, MHS String Chamber Ensemble, Cellar Dwellers Jazz Combo, Cast of Milton High’s upcoming musical, PIPPIN, and the  Wildcat Marching Band. I would also like to thank the many elementary students who created beautiful artwork to be auctioned off. The great success of the concert can be attributed to these talented and dedicated students:  Ryan Au, Annabel Botsford, Eva Chow, Colleen Conley, Isabella DeFilippo, Julia DeFilippo, James DiSandro, Jamie Eder, Jada Farrar, Sawyer Flanagan, Sarah Hancock, Penelope Holland, Dominik Hyppolite, Timothy Karoff, Lauren  Kelly, James Le, Claire Mandel, Nethania Marc, Henry McKay, Griffin McLaughlin, Julia Nerenberg, Hue-Ninh Nguyen, Laura O’Hanlon, Kaleigh Pentland, Gwyneth Sauter, Arielle Solomon, Grace Varela, Annie Wong, Josh Riggs, Edward Enyedy and Isabel Smith.

Staff:  I would like to thank Director of Fine and Applied Arts, Dawn Sykes, who collaborated with students and staff to organize the event, the many teachers who helped students create art, and our principals and administrators who went above and beyond to make this event such a success. Specific thanks to Laurel Bernini, Kevin Black, Stephen Collyer, Holly Concannon, Rebecca Damiani, Laurie Dunn, Lauren Finkle, Gary Good, James Jette, Sean Lopresti, Dr. Elaine MacNeil-Girmai, Karen McDavitt, Debra Miller, Glenn Pavlicek, Preston Perro, Jon Redden, Charlene Roche, Janet Sheehan, Stephanie Sherman, Dr. Karen Spaulding, Robyn Thompson, Joyce White, Sandy Wyse, Jessica Gillooly and Robert Willet.

Volunteers:  Please join me in also thanking our many community volunteers who made this event possible with their generous support including Lhasa Hyppolite, Rose Gates, Julie Fay, Pauline Wells, Selectman Richard Wells, Kathleen Carroll, John Gillooly, Chuck Parrish,Jen Leggett, Julio Varela, School Committee member Sheila Varela, Martin McPhilemy, Milton FAME, and the Music Department Parents and Guardians.

The Milton Public School system does not and shall not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion (creed), gender, gender expression, gender identity, transgender status, gender transitioning, age, national origin (ancestry), disability, marital status, sexual orientation, or military status, in any of its programs, activities or operations. These include, but are not limited to, admissions, equal access to programs and activities, employment, provision of and access to programs and services, as well as selection of volunteers, vendors and employers recruiting at the Milton Public Schools.  We are committed to providing an inclusive and welcoming environment for all members of our staff, students, volunteers, subcontractors, and vendors.  The following person has been designated to handle inquiries regarding the non-discrimination policies:  Assistant Superintendent for Curriculum & Human Resources, 617-696-4812.

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