WINCHESTER HIGH SCHOOL

80 Skillings Road

Winchester, MA 01890

Telephone 781-721-7020

 

PARENT FACULTY ASSOCIATION NEWSLETTER

NOVEMBER 2014

 

Visit our website at http://www.whspfa.org

   

FROM THE OFFICE OF PRINCIPAL SEAN KILEY

 

November (noun): The eleventh month of the year in the Julian and Gregorian calendars and one of four months with a length of 30 days. November is commonly associated with the season of autumn in the Northern Hemisphere and spring in the Southern Hemisphere. November Fun Facts:  Abraham Lincoln delivered the Gettysburg Address, Election Day is always the first Tuesday after the first Monday, and Veteran’s Day is celebrated.  Notable Birthdays:  Mark Twain, India Ghandi, Sir Winston Churchill, Louisa May Alcott, and Joe DiMaggio.  November is also National Adoption Month and National Novel Writing Month.

I must admit I love November for a few reasons and here are my Top Five:

1.      The weather...there is nothing better than 65 degrees and sunny! A bit brisk, but completely enjoyable.

2.      The classes/courses...as a high school principal, it is the time when classes start to define themselves.  A more relaxed learning environment takes over and discussions become a bit more wide-ranging.

3.      The clothes...the month brings out the best outfits and people start dressing like grownups again, at least those who should. I have always been a fan of the sweater, too.

4.      New England Sports...admittedly, I turn into a 10 year-old each year at this time, especially when our teams are in the hunt.

5.      Time for Family...make it count.

SPIRIT WEEK

November has quickly arrived and along with it the excitement of Spirit Week, an opportunity for our Sachems to celebrate, perform, and compete.  Three days for students to experience school spirit guided by an unshakable belief in being a Sachem.  Three days to highlight the students’ commitment to WHS while further enhancing a school culture that seems to grow stronger every day.    Three days to tell our story; an accurate one filled with students and staff dressed up in outrageous outfits expressing both creativity and school spirit according to daily themes set forth by our hard-working Student Council, along with their fearless advisor, Mr. Mike Robbat.

I have always felt that "culture" influences everything that happens in a school - the shared experiences, traditions and celebrations, a sense of community, of family and team. It is the "hidden curriculum" that has a key role in student achievement and improving educational outcomes. The hope is that the students of Winchester High School enjoy these traditions and work hard to maintain them, to preserve them, because that is what makes our high school special.

SENIOR REMINDER

Students should be mindful of the upcoming early action college deadlines. Early applications are typically due on November 1st or November 15th. Be sure all of your transcripts are requested through the guidance department and stay focused in class since many colleges will want to see your first quarter and semester grades. Please make sure to stay in contact with your guidance counselors throughout this process and do not wait until the last minute to send your application in.

THANK YOU, STUDENTS & STAFF

I want to take the time to thank the students and staff for the hard work put in to Quarter One.  It really did go by quickly.  Quarter Two begins on Monday, November 10th, and I encourage each of you to keep up with the effort around your academics and your school spirit - particularly around respect for our school.  Although we are in the midst of the first phase of the New Winchester High School Building Project, small things such as your efforts around cleanliness of cafeteria during lunches and respect towards the faculty and staff has definitely been noticed and conveyed to me.  Small gestures like these make huge differences in the culture of the school.  I am really proud of what I’ve seen.  Please keep that pace that we’ve set for Winchester High School.

CONGRATULATIONS ARE IN ORDER TO…

Š       The WHS Varsity Golf Team for capturing the Middlesex League Championship for the first time since 2001.  Great work!

Š       Mrs. Tanya Ferretto for being named 2014 Massachusetts Italian “Teacher of the Year” by the Massachusetts Foreign Language Association.  Her innovative methods bring teaching to life in the classroom, and she is a model for her colleagues, an inspiration to the Winchester Community, and a leader in Foreign Language Education.

Š       Robotics Team

Š       Dave Petty Award  

EFFORT ALWAYS PREVAILS

I’d like to take the time thank all of our students who took the SAT and PSAT, along with our faculty members who proctored these tests over the past month.  It was a great opportunity to show what Winchester High School is all about.  Your effort on these tests was definitely noticed and our hope is to continue to be the model of a high school that is succeeding in the State of Massachusetts.

Lastly, the month of November will be fast and furious.  We only have 15.5 academic days during this month, so please be sure to make attendance a priority – keep the pace of your schedule and get here every day and on time this month.  Your hard work is going to pay off, I promise.

WHS FLU CLINIC = SUCCESS

Thank you to the Winchester High School Health Office for providing a Flu Immunization Clinic (shot and nasal mist will be available) for all students at the end of October. With research indicating that the influenza virus will cause the most illness during the upcoming season, our exceptional WHS Nursing Staff set a goal to immunize one-half of our student body in an effort to decrease illness and lost school time due to illness.  Thank you again, Mrs. Britt and Mrs. Scamperle, for providing this service to our students.

REFLECTION

I figured I’d make an attempt to include a symbolic quote this month.  It’s not by Jefferson, or Emerson, or even Thoreau as is customary from the typical high school principal, but by one of my favorite musicians, someone who I really enjoy listening to around this time of the year – Jack Johnson…who was originally a Math Major in college. He was recently quoted as saying, “I’ve always had the greatest respect for high school students.  I just assume they all have great minds.”  I think this quote applies to everyone at this Winchester High School and I hope you all realize the importance of the time spent in your classes and how much effort and dedication you have put into this year.

I hope you have a happy November, everyone.  Be the optimist.

Respectfully,

Sean Kiley, Principal

Below are a few WHS dates that may or may not affect you this month:

Date

Event

November 4th

No School - Teacher Professional Day

November 5th

Winchester Coalition for a Safer Community Public Forum:  7:00 pm

November 7th

1st Quarter Ends

November 11th

No School - Veteran’s Day Services: Marching Band TBA

November 13th

PFA Meeting:  7:30 pm

November 15th

Senior District Auditions - Select Vocal & Instrumental Students TBA

November 16th/23rd

Mission of Deeds Benefit - WHS Orchestras: St. Mary’s Church

November 24th -26th

WHS Spirit Week ‘14

November 25th

School Committee Meeting:  7:00 pm

November 26th

Early Release

November 27th

WHS Thanksgiving Football Game vs. Woburn/Marching Band

November 26th - 28th

Thanksgiving Break

 

PFA NEWS

 

We had a well-attended first PFA meeting of the year on October 16th.  Thank you to every one of you who attended and actively participated in the discussions.  It is your involvement and interest that helps us build a true community and maintains our focus on issues relevant to our children receiving a positive high school experience.

 

At the meeting, the new PFA Board and the Budget for the 2014-15 academic year were approved.  The Direct Appeal, Grants and Newsletter Co-Chairs made informative presentations to explain the important role that each Committee plays within the functioning of the WHS PFA.  The ‘hot topic’ of the evening was Principal Sean Kiley, and for most parents, this was their first opportunity to engage in meaningful conversation with him.  The discussion covered a wide range of issues and details will be available after the meeting minutes are approved at the November meeting and posted on the PFA website. The meeting minutes for the last PFA meeting in June 2014 were approved and are posted here PFA Minutes June 2014 final  

 

Our next meeting will be held on Monday, November 3rd.  We will be welcoming WHS Guidance Director, Suzanne Ontso, and our newly appointed School Adjustment Counselor, Amber Haines as our featured speakers for the evening.  Ms. Ontso and Ms. Haines will address questions that were submitted ahead of time and any questions that you bring with you to the meeting.  Together, they will provide valuable insight into many of the issues that are pertinent to our children’s academic development, but which cannot be satisfactorily addressed in the classroom.  Another very important piece of business for the evening will be to review and approve teacher grant requests. More than 50% of the funds raised by Direct Appeal are channeled towards enrichment programs. These programs are brought to our children’s classrooms by teachers via grants funded by the PFA.  Please join us for the evening to hear about the amazing programs that we are optimistic about funding.

 

At the time of writing, we have reached a little over 50% of our Direct Appeal goal for the year.  Besides teacher grants that directly benefit the students, your Direct Appeal contribution also helps fund expenses such as the Principal’s Scholarship Fund, Teacher Appreciation Luncheon, retirement gifts and memorials, constant contact and website hosting, to name a few.  This year, we have also approved tax preparation fees to the Lexington based firm of Abbott and Company to help us maintain our 501(c)3 status.  The WHS PFA is striving to preserve a sense of normalcy in the face of many changes by maintaining its regular programs, and we need your help in order to accomplish our goal.  Our heartfelt thanks to you if you have already made your donation, but if you have not had the chance to make your contribution earlier, you will be able to do so by visiting our website at www.whspfa.org/direct appeal

 

School Improvement Council Elections have been held and we congratulate Heidi Driscoll on her election and Roger Hain on his re-election. The SIC plays an important bridging role in the community and we thank Heidi Driscoll and Roger Hain for volunteering their time and talents towards this undertaking.

 

The Second Annual Sachem Spirit Holiday Fair, organized by Gael Robinson and Heidi Driscoll, will be held on Saturday, November 22nd, from 12-3 pm in the WHS cafeteria. WHS athletic teams and clubs will have another opportunity to sell and parents will have another opportunity to purchase Sachem gear before the Holidays.

We wish you and your children a productive month and Happy Thanksgiving celebrations!!

 

Sincerely,

Malini Dutta

Lori Scully

WHS PFA Co-Presidents

 

HELPFUL LINKS

 

WHS Staff Contact List

WHS List of Key Dates

District- wide Calendar

 

From the Athletic Department

 

Winter Sports Registration is now open on FamilyID!  All students wishing to participate in a winter sport should have a parent/guardian register them as soon as possible.  Here is the link:  https://www.familyid.com/winchester-hs-athletics

 

The Winter Sports Information Night will be on Wednesday, November 12th at 6:30PM in the Gymnasium.  All students wishing to participate in a winter sport should attend with a parent/guardian.

 

As a means to further enhance communication, I am pleased to announce the Winchester Athletic App.  Over the past several months, we have been working with developers of the app that is now available to download through the Apple Store or GooglePlay.  The app has several components that will be helpful for students, staff, and families.  The app provides athletic schedules, rosters, scores, standings, and directions to all athletic events.  There is also an option to intergrate all events into your smartphone calendars.

 

 

 

SCHOOL NEWS

 

The 2nd Annual Sachem Spirit Holiday Fair

 

The 2nd Annual Sachem Spirit Holiday Fair will take place on Saturday, November 22, 2014, 12-3PM in the WHS Cafeteria

 

Please plan on attending to get some great Sachem gear for yourself and to give as gifts.

If you represent a WHS Team, Club or Organization  and would like to register for a table please contact: Gael Robinson at gaelrobinson@gmail.com or Heidi Driscoll,  heididriscoll@gmail.com. Or contact the student reps, Ellery Robinson, ellerymaerobinson@gmail.com and Jamie Driscoll, jamiedriscoll11@gmail.com

 

 

A Community Dialogue on What’s Happening in Winchester

 

What's Happening in Winchester?

A Community Dialogue on Opioid/Substance Abuse, Related Crime, Public Health and Safety

 

NOVEMBER 5 from 7:00-8:30PM at McCall Middle School Auditorium

 

Given the recent heroin-related arrests in Winchester, and the State's declaration that opioid addiction has reached epidemic proportions, the Winchester Coalition For A Safer Community will hold "A Community Dialogue" on November 5th from 7:00-8:30 PM at the McCall Middle School Auditorium at 458 Main Street in Winchester, MA.

 

 

TOPICS:

   battling the influx of heroin, marijuana and other drugs into our community;

   dealing with alcohol and substance abuses amongst both teens and adults;

   understanding the correlation between mental health issues and self-harming behaviors;

   finding the resources available to inform and guide us all.

 

FORMAT:

The evening will consist of a 45-minute presentation, followed by a 45-minute Q&A and open discussion.

 

SPEAKERS:

 

(1) representatives from the Winchester Police and Fire Departments, and the Probation Department of the Woburn District Court, who will share current statistical information about drug related crime;

 

(2) representatives from Winchester Hospital who will share data on emergency room and other admissions related to self-harming behaviors (such as cutting, suicide and substance abuse), as well as community treatment programs in place;

 

(3) WHS Principal Sean Kiley and McCall Principal Jorge Goncalves who will speak about their schools' climates and the Youth Risk Behavior Survey; and

 

(4) behavioral health specialist Dr. Robert Keane of Walden Behavioral Health Center who will discuss innovations in treatment and therapy programs.

 

Town Meeting Moderator, Peter Haley, will moderate the panel discussions and lead the Q & A session. 

 

ATTENDEES:

The public is encouraged to attend, and share their concerns and thoughts on how we can begin to move forward together as a community to address some of these issues. 

 

CONTACT:

For more information on the program, please contact the Program Manager, Dot Butler, at butlermail@aol.com.

 

Sponsored by the Winchester Coalition For A Safer Community, in partnership with the Winchester Health Department, Police and Fire Department, and Public Schools. 

 

 

2013-2014 Youth Risk Behavior Survey Update

 

 The 2013-2014 YRBS (Youth Risk Behavior Survey) Presentation to the community is Wednesday, November 19th - 7:00 pm at Lincoln Elementary School.

 

 

WHS Construction Project Update

 

Did You Know?

   All construction is on schedule: the Phase 1 demolition is complete and the Phase 1 foundations are being poured. 

   The final design is complete and has been submitted to the Massachusetts School Building Authority.

   Structural steel will arrive on site in early November.

   The GMP (Gross Maximum Price) will be finalized and approved at the November 12th EFPBC meeting, where there will be a discussion regarding scope alternates previously discussed during the Value Management Process.

 

We encourage residents to stay engaged by frequenting the project website, winchesterhsproject.com.  Please send any questions or comments to winchesterhsquestions@gmail.com

 

Sincerely,

 

Winchester HS Project Communications Group

 

 

 

 

 

 

CLASS NEWS

 

Attn: Class of 2018 Parents and Guardians

 

The following students have been elected to be Class Officers:

 

   President-  Jessica Miller

   Vice President - Lauren Logeman

   Secretary - Collin MacLean

   Treasurer - Justin Yu

 

The faculty class advisors are: Melissa Lutchen and Michael Lee

 

Can you spare a few hours each semester to help the Class of 2018 celebrate their time at WHS?  The Class of 2018 needs 2 or 3 parents to volunteer to be parent representatives for this fantastic class. The parent representatives support the Class Officers with fundraisers and social gatherings during the year. (Mostly it is making runs to BJ's for water bottles and food before social functions.)

 

Seize this rare opportunity to be a part of your high schooler's school day! Sorry to the parents of Class Officers, you are not eligible to serve!

 

Parent representatives usually follow the class through all four of the high school years.

 

Connect & Commit

 

ALL ARE WELCOME!!

 

You can sign up for the opportunities listed below at the meetings or in the C&C Office in the library of the high school.  If you have questions visit Lauren Winterer, Program Director, in the C&C Office or email her at connectandcommit@gmail.com.

 

                                                                         

 

                                                              WINCHESTER YOUTH CENTER

458R Main Street

Winchester MA 01890

781-721-0906

http://www.winyc.com

winchesteryouthcenter@gmail.com

 

You may not know this, but... the Winchester Youth Center is home to a wide range of leadership, service-learning, and good-decision-making activities specifically for high school students.  The WYC provides tons of opportunities for WHS students to have fun with friends, do great things for the community, and learn how much they are capable of accomplishing!

 

Some upcoming events are as follows:

 

WINCHESTER COMMUNITY LANTERN WALK

“Share and Shine”

Tuesday, November 11th

6:00pm

Winchester Town Common

Followed by chili dinner at First Congregational Church

All members of the WHS community are invited to join us for the 3rd annual Winchester Community Lantern Walk. This is a community event for families and people of all ages to take time out to shine a light on the negative impacts of stress, discover resources for reducing stress, and share a family dinner together. To find out more about the Lantern Walk please go to www.winchesterlanternwalk.org or email us at winchesteryouthcenter@gmail.com 

We encourage everyone to check out our website at www.winyc.com or just stop by the WYC anytime to learn about all the awesome opportunities to get involved!  

 

ROCK FOR YOUTH

Friday, November 21st

7:30-10:30pm

Winchester Town Hall Auditorium

$10 Admission

It’s the first round of the Battle of the Bands!

Come for a great night of live music and vote for your favorite bands.

Proceeds from Rock for Youth help to fund WYC events and service-learning projects.

 

 

RELAY FOR LIFE OF WINCHESTER PLANNING COMMITTEE

Do you want to help in the fight against cancer? Then join the 2015 Relay For Life of Winchester Event Leadership Team to help us plan this fantastic community event!

Our committee includes teens and adults working collaboratively on all aspects of community outreach, event planning and implementation. The committee is made up of sub-committees that focus on particular task areas including Team Recruitment, Fundraising, Sponsorship, Marketing, Survivors & Caregivers, Event Logistics, and Entertainment & Ceremonies.

Please contact us at winchesterrelay@gmail.com for more information.

 

 

COMMUNITY NEWS

 

WFEE Update

 

Get out your calendars, the WFEE Prom 'n Aid has been rescheduled for Friday, March 6

 

We will be moving to Town Hall but still starting at 6:30 pm, having a fabulous dinner, dancing and more. A limited number of tickets are still available for purchase through www.wfee.org. Questions? Contact Caren Connelly at info@wfee.org

 

Did you know.......

   WFEE's powerED UP! initiative aimed at integrating technology into all Winchester classrooms will make a difference at WHS? One goal of the $850,000 campaign is the purchase of management software to allow Winchester High School to become a "bring your own device" school. The plan also includes money for piloting on line textbooks - no more 50 pound backpacks! Watch this video on Vimeo to learn more - : https://vimeo.com/lmpgeneral/review/100538079/b09c1da974

   Chemistry students at all levels will be working with updated lab equipment thanks to a WFEE Grant. The nearly $4500 grant provides sensors, probes, interfaces and more to allow for more advanced lab work

Visit www.wfee.org to read about powerED UP! and other WFEE projects

 

 

Winchester Scholarship Foundation Seeking New Board Members

 

The Winchester Scholarship Foundation is seeking new board members to help continue their mission of providing scholarships to deserving WHS seniors and graduates. Each year approximately 100 students receive the much needed help to pay for escalating college costs. It's a great opportunity to help our students. Please contact Nancy Kinton at nkinton@hotmail.com or call 781.771.8259 for details.

 

 

Parent to Parent Events

 

Are We Over-Parenting?  Are We Under-Disciplining?  Or, Are We Doing it Right?  

 

The discussion will be based on the topics outlined in an Atlantic article, The Overprotected Kid, by Hanna Rosin and in a Wall Street Journal article, Why French Parents are Superior by Pamela Druckerman.  


 

Ms. Rosin addresses how a preoccupation with safety has stripped childhood of independence, risk taking and discovery - without making it safer.  Ms. Druckerman contends that while Americans fret over modern parenthood, the French are raising happy, well-behaved children without all the anxiety.

 

Come join other parents on Thursday, November 13th, from 7:00 to 8:30 pm in the Winchester Public Library Large Meeting Room as we discuss these thought-provoking articles.   The articles are available on our website, www.parenttoparentwinchester.org.  All are welcome, but please note that the program may be most beneficial for parents and guardians of younger children (pre-school, elementary, middle school). 

Talking to Your Kids about Sexting, Drinking, Drugs and Other Things That Freak You Out

The discussion will be presented by Joani Geltman, MSW, author of A Survival Guide to Parenting Teens: Talking to Your Kids about Sexting, Drinking, Drugsand Other Things That Freak You Out.”

Joani is a clinician, parenting coach, college professor and public speaker with over 30 years of experience working with parents, children, schools and community groups.  With her unique brand of “infotainment”, Joani uses humor and storytelling while providing the most up to date commentary on teen behavior and helpful parenting strategies.

 

Come join other parents on Wednesday, December 3, 2014, from 7:00 to 9:00 pm in the

McCall Middle School Auditorium as we discuss this important topic.

 

Winchester Friends of Music Sponsoring Logo Design Contest

 

Winchester Friends of Music (WFOM) is looking for a logo design that can be used to represent the Winchester Public Schools Music Program. The contest is open to students, parents, teachers, administrators - anybody! 


The deadline for entry is November 21, 2014. 

 

All entries will be reviewed by the WFOM board and if a design is chosen, the designer will receive a $100 iTunes or Visa gift card. The winning submission will be announced by November 30, 2014. In addition to one winner, each participant will be entered in a drawing for a $25 iTunes gift card. 

 

Please submit your design to Winchester Friends of Music at FOMwps@gmail.com

 

 

Winchester Public Library Programs

 

Thurs, Nov 6, 2014 at 7:00 pm: "John Simmons, The Measure of a Man" by Winchester's own Denise Pappas. The story of a man who became wealthy producing ready-to-wear clothing before the invention of the sewing machine, later invested in Boston real estate and left his fortune to Simmons College. Denise Pappas is a former Trustee of the Winchester Library and a graduate of Simmons College herself.  The book is being released the week prior to this talk and is a fundraising vehicle for Simmons College.  This program is sponsored by the Friends of the Winchester Public Library and the John & Mary Murphy Educational Foundation and is free to the public. 

 

Wednesday, January 7, 2015 (snow date Jan. 8th) at 7:00 pm: "The Joy of Getting Things Done" by Linda L. King of Reading.   If you missed this program the last three New Year's Resolutions ago, it's a must for people who want to make their 2015 resolutions become a reality.  Attendees receive hand-outs for developing their own action plan and note taking.

 

Tuesday, February 3, 2015 (snow date February 4th) 7:00 pm:  "Murder and Mayhem:  The Dark Side of Boston".  Enter the dark side of Boston's history in this narrated slideshow presented by Boston By Foot, a nonprofit organization that provides walking tours of Boston. Hear about the scourges of smallpox and influenza, Boston's history of mob violence, the Molasses Flood, the infamous Brink's robbery and more as we explore Boston's dark and dangerous underbelly!

 

Winchester Public Library, 80 Washington Street, Winchester, MA

 

Hall of Fame Candidate Nominations deadline December 1, 2014

 

Nominations for the 2015 Winchester Sports Hall of Fame are underway. This inductee class will be honored at the Annual Winchester Sports Hall of Fame Dinner on Thursday evening May 7, 2015, at the Burlington Marriott, Burlington, MA. Mark your calendars now, as the evening promises to be even more special, as we celebrate the 25th Anniversary of the Winchester Sports Foundation Hall of Fame!

 

The Hall of Fame Committee invites your nomination of potential candidates whom you feel exemplified outstanding athletic achievement, leadership and integrity while attending Winchester High School. To nominate a candidate,  a minimum of five present (or past) Winchester residents can submit a letter of support along with evidence of the candidate's or team's athletic accomplishments.  Please note, this information must be included with the nomination.  Nominees must meet the requirements established in the Bylaws found on the website: winchestersportsfoundation.com/halloffame. Please note that the deadline for nominations is December 1, 2014.  Questions or for more information please contact: Dot Butler at Butlermail@aol.com