From: Mary C. Gormley
To: Students, Parents/Guardians and Staff
Re: E-blast Update
Date: Friday, November 1st, 2013
FROM THE DESK OF THE SUPERINTENDENT
Welcome to November! As an educator, it is important to me to share the news that November is Family Literacy Month. Through the years, our schools have held various events to celebrate this event, but this year, I wanted to do something special.
Together with our school librarians, Jennifer Troy, Jessica Royster, Sara Doherty and Lori Henry, we have come up with an exciting initiative, “Milton Books for Milton Families.” We are asking for donations of used books – for children, teens or adults – and we will have a drop-off station at the front doors of Milton High School on Saturday, November 16th. The books will be sorted and a packet of books will be delivered to Milton families in need who do not have sufficient reading materials in their homes.
A recent research study shows that one of the strongest predictors of student achievement in school is the number of books in the home where the child grows up. Researchers found that children who grew up in a home with more than 500 books spent three years longer in school than children whose parents had only a few books. But even a relatively small number of books can make a difference. A child whose family has 25 books will, on average, complete two more years of school than a child whose family home has no books. (To read the entire report, click here: http://www.rodneytrice.com/sfbb/articles/home.pdf)
This research makes our initiative even more important. By sharing our resources, we can help to improve early literacy, decrease the proficiency gap, promote recycling and celebrate our love of reading. I strongly believe that instilling a love of reading at an early age is the greatest educational gift you can give your child.
Other ways to celebrate Family Literacy Month include the following:
Set aside time for reading: Designate a time of day when family members can read for pleasure. Make reading a part of your family routine.
Make reading special: Children should feel as if having a book is special. Help them create a space for reading or storing their books.
Use your local library: One of the best resources you will have as a parent is access to the Milton Public Library. It costs nothing to borrow books. The children’s and teen librarians at MPL have many programs for students of all ages, so visit the MPL website at http://www.miltonlibrary.org/
Limit television time: Monitor program selection for your children. Discuss programs with them. Have a “No TV” night with your family on a regular basis.
RED SOX UPDATE
Our Pierce Middle School students got in on all the Red Sox excitement earlier this week and were featured as part of WCVB-TV’s “Wake-Up Call.” Click here to watch the video that aired on Channel Five:
SCHOOL COMMITTEE UPDATE
The last School Committee meeting was held on Wednesday, October 16th. Below is a summary of that meeting:
Alysa Buchanan, English Language Education Teacher/Coordinator gave a presentation on the overview of English Language Education programs. To view the entire report, click here:http://www.miltonps.org/documents/SchoolCommitteePresentation101613.pdf The annual Field Trip List was presented, with the Pierce Middle School trip to Quebec occurring in May. The list was approved by School Committee. Members approved a list of Proposed School Committee goals for the District; and approved a list of End-of-the-Year Data Points for the EOY report. A list of resolutions from the upcoming MASC conference was presented and members approved five resolutions and rejected one. They also approved the new School Committee calendar and discussed the recently-released DOR report on the town financial review. The next School Committee meeting will be held on Wednesday, November 6th.
Please note, Parent/Teacher Conferences will be held the week of Wednesday, November 20th. There will be a half-day Early Release Day on this day. Please call your child’s school or check the Edline page for details about times/dates of conferences.
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In what has now become an annual tradition, the Pierce Middle School administration hosted a luncheon in the school library to recognize students who achieved a score of 280 – (no mistakes) on the most recent MCAS exams. Students were treated to a lunch of sandwiches and rollups, as well as cake and other treats. Each student was presented with a certificate of achievement and was congratulated by their teachers and administrators. Below is a list of Pierce Middle School students achieved at least one perfect score:
Grade 6 *Emily Dobrindt, Paul Goodman, **Thomas Hamblet, *Wallace Heller, Maria Koudounas, Vanessa Lorden, Aline Moreau, Margaret Pellegri, Grace Quijano, *Clarissa Waldmann, Ella Zimmerman.
Grade 7 Sarah Hancock, Katherine Barrett, Samuel Coover, Grace Dwyer, Samantha Van Gessel, Alexandra Kelly, Ece Buyukozer, Brendan Cox, Anna Garrity, Claire Mandel, Minhanh Nguyen.
Grade 8 Kelly Chapple, Shane Berry, Eva Chow, Genevieve Connelly, Robert Dexter, Alyssa Foster, Miwa Joiner, Joshua Kackley, Timothy Karoff, Nora Kelly, Mary Kenney, Julie Le, Nethania Marc, Hueninh Nguyen.
* Achieved two perfect scores
** Achieved three perfect scores
Some of you may have heard about the new PARCC test. The PARCC assessments will be ready for states to administer during the 2014-15 school year. However, the Milton Public Schools will be participating in the 2014 PARCC Field Test. Please see below for more information, provided by Amy Gale, Glover Curriculum Coordinator/Pierce Middle School Humanities Curriculum Coordinator.
This spring nearly all of the Milton Public Schools will be participating in a field test of the new PARCC (Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers) exam. This exam was created to address the need to prepare students for college and career and to answer the call for an exam aligned with the new Common Core State Standards. The PARCC is slated to replace the current MCAS exam in the Spring of 2015 and this field test will be an excellent opportunity for the district to gain familiarity with the test, its components and how well our students are prepared. The following, taken from www.parcconline.org outlines the priorities and technology based design of the exam.
State leaders in the Partnership for Assessment of Readiness of College and Careers share one fundamental goal: building their collective capacity to dramatically increase the rates at which students graduate from high school prepared for success in college and the workplace.
PARCC’s next-generation assessment system will provide students, educators, policymakers and the public with the tools needed to identify whether students — from grade 3 through high school — are on track for postsecondary success and, critically, where gaps may exist and how they can be addressed well before students enter college or the workforce.
The PARCC assessment has six priority purposes, which are driving the design of the system
The priority purposes of PARCC Assessments are:
- Determine whether students are college- and career-ready or on track
- Assess the full range of the Common Core Standards, including standards that are difficult to measure
- Measure the full range of student performance, including the performance high- and low-performing students
- Provide data during the academic year to inform instruction, interventions and professional development
- Provide data for accountability, including measures of growth
- Incorporate innovative approaches throughout the assessment system
PARCC will also use technology throughout the design and implementation of the assessment system. The overall assessment system design will include a mix of constructed response items, performance-based tasks, and computer-enhanced, computer-scored items. The PARCC assessments will be administered via computer, and a combination of automated scoring and human scoring will be employed.
Milton students in classes randomly selected for the field test will participate in one of the two following ways:
1. Students take both the Performance Based Assessment (PBA) and the End of Year Assessment (EOY) in one content area.
2. Students take either the PBA or the EOY in one content area.
The table below indicates which schools, grades and subjects within the district will participate. Communication via the building principal will let you know if your child’s class has been selected for the field test.
# of Classes
Mode of Admin.
Number of sessions
|Pierce||7||Mathematics||2||Online||PBA & EOY||4|
|Milton High||Integrated Math 1||Mathematics||4||Online||EOY||2|
|Milton High||Integrated Math 3||Mathematics||6||Online||PBA||2|
PBA tests in ELA and Mathematics will be administered between March 24th and April 11th
EOY tests in ELA and Mathematics will be administered between May 5th and June 6th
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As I mentioned above, our schools will be celebrating Family Literacy Month during the entire month of November. Special events have been planned and I will keep parents and guardians updated about these events. Elementary schools will be posting events on their schools’ Edline pages. Please see below for Middle and High School events:
Pierce hosted a parent coffee on Friday, November 1st, with parents and guardians invited to browse books. In addition, Pierce students are working on the Pierce Middle School Book Tree, where students will create book jackets of their favorite books and hang them on a wall sized tree for other students to view. They will also be working on a Pierce Middle School Family Book Tree, where book recommendations from parents and guardians will be solicited. Parents/guardians will complete a book recommendation form to be displayed on a Pierce Middle School Family Book Tree.
Milton High School is a holding “Catch Your Child Reading,” event. Parents and guardians are asked to catch your child reading throughout the month of November. Take a picture of them expanding their minds through reading and send the photo with their name and grade level to email@example.com. Each student that participates will be entered into a drawing for a Barnes and Noble gift card. The winner will be announced on Monday, December 2nd. Milton High will also be encouraging Family Conversations. This month, parents will be receiving information about family literacy and sample activities to extend family learning throughout the year. One way parents can promote literacy is to be an active participant in their child’s academic life. During the week of November 18th-22nd, English teachers will be sending home a short reading with a discussion question for parents and students to talk about. We encourage parents and guardians to take advantage of this opportunity to celebrate family literacy and strengthen the home-school connection.
UPCOMING MPS EVENTS
Pierce Concerts will be held Tuesday, November 12th in the Pierce Auditorium. Please note the schedule below:
6:00 pm Chorus 6 and Band 6
7:00 pm Strings 6, Chorus 7, and Strings 7&8
8:00 pm Boys Chorus 8, Girls Chorus
PAC/SPECIAL ED NEWS
Congratulations to the newly elected board for the Milton PAC. The board and membership are currently engaged with the administration in planning the PAC year.
Jerry Vitti – Chairperson
Michelle Connolly- Vice Chairperson
Ann Finnegan – Treasurer
Kathy Fagan – Member at Large
Kevin Lenane – Member at Large
Terri James Solomon – Member at Large
NEWS AROUND TOWN
On Saturday, November 23rd, the Milton 5K Gobbler for Best Buddies. Registration will be held at Cunningham School . Registration begins at 7am and the race begins at 9am. There will be prizes for the top finishers and a “Golden Gobbler Trophy” for the top individual and team fundraisers. Free T-shirts for the first 300 people to enter and 100% of the proceeds will benefit Best Buddies Massachusetts. For more information, visit: www.bestbuddiesma.org/
MILTON PUBLIC LIBRARY
Fall fun continues in the Children’s Room at Milton Public Library! In addition to our regular storytimes on Mondays, Tuesdays, and Wednesdays, we have these exciting programs for the young people in your life happening during the week of November 10th – 16th:
Monday, November 11th: Library closed for Veterans Day
Wednesday, November 13th from 4-5 pm
Remedial French Reading with Mr. Leite, Grades 1-2
In this program, beloved Tucker French teacher Mr. Leite will lead students in a French reading tutorial. This class is for first and second grade students in the French program in the Milton Public Schools who need help with reading, and is limited to ten students. While this is a series, registration for each individual class is required.
Saturday, November 16th , 2013 from 2-3 pm
Bookbusters Book Club, Grades 3-5
The Bookbusters is a book club for boys and girls in grades 3-5. Led by Miss Sara, group participants are asked to read a book in advance of the meeting, then come together to talk about it with their peers. The book we are reading for November is In the Year of the Boarand Jackie Robinson by Bette Bao Lord. Copies are available at the Children’s Room desk, or by placing a hold at www.miltonlibrary.org. Come join us to discuss this funny, honest story about a Chinese girl who moves to America in 1947 and learns to love her new country, as well as its favorite pastime: baseball! Registration is required.
Don’t forget to check the library web calendar for a listing of the many programs we offer year-round. Information about and registration for all of our programs can always be found on our online calendar at www.miltonlibrary.org, or by calling the Children’s Room at 617-898-4957 during business hours. Please contact the Children’s Room if you have questions about any of our programs or services.
Girls Cross Country
The Girls Cross Country team is wrapping up a very successful season. On Wednesday of last week, the team won the final meet of the season against Braintree and ended the season with a winning record of 6-5. The team also competed at the Bay State Conference Championships last week. Colette O’Leary was the first Milton finisher in the Varsity race, placing 12th overall, followed by Mairead Dambruch in 17th place, and Hannah Shepard in 35th place. As a result of the team’s performance over the last two weekends, the Girls Cross Country Team is currently ranked 15th in the state for all Division II small school teams – out of 182 teams.
Boys Cross Country
The MHS Boys cross country team finished the regular season with a record of 3 and 8. They finished 8th in the league meet on Saturday and will compete in the state division meet on November 9th. The MHS Boys XC finished their regular strong with a win at Braintree HS.
The boys’ final record for the season was 4-13-1, which earned the team 5th place in The Herget Division of the Bay State Conference. Boys varsity won last Saturday vs North Quincy 2-1,to win the 2013 Town Line Cup two- games series vs North Quincy for a cumulative score of 9-2. Congrats to Boys Soccer!
The girls’ final record for the season was 6-7-2, which earned them 4th place in the Herget Division of the Bay State Conference. MHS Girls Soccer will compete in the MIAA Tournament on Friday, Nov 1st. This is the first post-season appearance for MHS Girls Soccer in 9 years. In addition, two MHS Girls Soccer players have been named to 1st Team All League, with one Honorable Mention. Claire Mahoney and Sophie Cousineau made the Bay State Conference 1st team All Star and Kendall Stanley made the Bay State League Honorable Mention Team. Congratulations to all.
The team’s final Bay State Conference record was 1-11-1. Although the record does indicate this, Coach Jamie Donovan did an amazing job with this varsity team. The future is strong for MHS Field Hockey, with the JV team finishing the season with a winning record and the Freshman team showing strong potential with a winning record of 12-2-2. In addition, Ali Jones was named to the Bay State Conference 1st Team All Stars as goalkeeper. Congrats to Ali on a great finish to her MHS Field Hockey career!
Football finished their regular season with a record of 3 wins and 4 losses, and a league record of 3 wins and 3 losses. This placed MHS Football 6th in the Division III South Sectional Tournament. MHS Varsity Football will be playing in the MIAA Football playoffs on Friday, November 1st vs Hopkington HS at 7pm at Hopkington HS.
Our Boys 4-man crew team was named the Massachusetts State Crew High School Champions, and our Girls 4-man finished #2 in the Mass State Crew HS Championships this past weekend in Worcester, MA. Both the 8-man boys & girls teams finished 5th out of 9th in the Mass State Crew High School Championships. Outstanding performance.
The MHS Cheerleading Team will be competing in the Bridgewater Raynham HS Cheerleading Tournament on Sunday, November 3rd and The Bay State Conference competition on November 6th at Braintree HS. Good luck to our cheerleaders.
The MHS Golf team finished their regular season with a record of 11 wins and 4 losses in the Bay State Conference. This qualified the MHS golf team for the Mass State Tournament on Monday, October 21st at Easton CC. The golf team finished 4th out of 12 golf teams. Congratulations to Coach Ben Kelly and his golf team!
The MHS Varsity Volleyball team finished their regular season 7 – 13 and qualified for the Mass State Tournament. Along with from their on-court play, all three teams have participated in fundraising for a wonderful cause, The Side Out Foundation which raises awareness and funds for breast cancer research. The team in conjunction with their families raised nearly $4000.00 for the cause…a true feeling of team building and sportsmanship.
Staff – I would like to congratulate Dr. Glenn Pavlicek, who was recently notified that he has been awarded the Lifetime Achievement Award by the Massachusetts Association of School Committees. This award is designed to honor current or former school committee members who have exhibited the best characteristics of public service. Dr. Pavlicek will be presented with this award on November 7th at the Leadership Awards Dinner during the 2013 MASC/MASS Joint Conference. This award is well-deserved and we would like to thank Dr. Pavlicek for his nine years of service on the Milton School Committee.
Volunteer - I would like to recognize three volunteers who went above and beyond expectations with this year’s 15th Annual Monster Dash. The Milton Foundation for Education volunteers have always done a wonderful job with this event, which helps to raise funds for science enrichment in the elementary school. This year, more than 541 runners registered for the event, more than 300 children participated in the kids’ fun run and close to 80 volunteers showed up to help out. The entire operation was overseen by Denise Queally, Beth Plunkett and Greg Gordon, and I would like to thank them for their time and efforts.
Students – I would like to recognize a group of students from Cunningham Elementary School. As part of our Readers Workshop, classroom libraries should be organized and “leveled.” Fifth-graders from Ms. d’Entremont’s fifth grade class worked with Elementary Math and Language Arts Coordinator Holly Concannon to level all of the books in the classroom library. The students used Chromebooks to look up the titles and authors of the books and then they color coded the levels using dots. This particular class then took it a step further by going to the first grade English classrooms and leveling those classroom libraries. Now students can select “Just Right” books from their newly-leveled library. Thank you to these students for going above and beyond for their school.
The Milton Public School system is an equal opportunity employer and is committed to the provision of quality educational programs for all students. The Milton Public School system does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, sex, religion, national origin, disability, genetic information, age or sexual orientation.