Superintendent Gormey releases updates for the week of October 28th, 2019
Read on for some of the latest updates on events, programs, and more going on in Milton’s public schools
This past spring the MFE Celebration 2019 raised the necessary funds to transform all of the Milton Public School libraries by providing movable furniture and flexible, comfortable seating to promote collaboration and support a wide variety of activities. Our libraries are now better able to meet the needs of students, staff, families, and community members who use these spaces throughout the day and evening for whole-class lessons, small-group work, research, enrichment groups, clubs, staff meetings, professional development, committee meetings, and much more. The flexible seating has been increasing focus and engagement by providing the movement and sensory input many students require, as well as greater choice, comfort, and opportunity for collaboration.
The libraries are now community spaces that foster curiosity, literacy (both print and digital), critical thinking skills, creation, and collaboration. In addition, our libraries are now places where individuals have the opportunity to learn not only about the larger world but themselves.
The library transformation project also included the installation of makerspaces in all of the MPS schools. Makerspaces are collaborative space focused on innovation in science, technology, engineering, art, and math. Makerspaces foster student-centered inquiry while promoting hands-on activities that teach twenty-first-century skills. Students make, create and express themselves by exploring through their own interests. Makerspaces allow students to learn to use tools and materials, both physical and virtual, and develop creative projects. Students learn how to fail and try again. We are so grateful to the MFE for their continued support.
We are just 3 days away from one of the premiere fall events in Milton – the Milton Foundation for Education’s Monster Dash! I encourage all of our MPS families and staff to register now for the MFE Monster Dash on Sunday, October 27th!
The Monster Dash, now in its 21st year, benefits the Sam Cichello Memorial Fund. The Cichello family created this fund in memory of their young son, Sam, who died tragically in a 1999 playground accident at Tucker Elementary School. Sam’s Fund supports the science curriculum in all Milton schools.
I hope to see you and your family on Sunday, October 27th at 10 a.m. at Cunningham Hall at the Monster Dash!
UPCOMING MPS DATES
Oct 27 MFE Monster Dash
Oct 30 The Addams Family at MHS
Nov 2 The Addams Family at MHS
Nov 3 The Addams Family at MHS
Nov 6 Milton School Committee Meeting
Nov 11 No School-Veterans Day
Nov 13 Parent Speaker Series, Screenagers Next Chapter
Nov 14 Early Release Day for Students/Conferences Grades 6-12
Nov 20 Milton School Committee Meeting
Nov 21 MHS Cabaret
Nov 23 Eastern District Sr Auditions
Nov 27,28,29 No School-Thanksgiving Day Recess
Dec 4 Milton School Committee
Dec 5 MHS College Information Night
The 2019-20 calendar can be found here.
Recent School Committee meetings can always be watched on Milton Access TV. The next School Committee meeting is on Wednesday, November 6th at 7pm. School Committee agendas and documents can be found on the front page of our website.
MASS STEM WEEK
The theme for the second annual Massachusetts STEM Week (October 21-25) is “See Yourself in STEM.” Women, people of color, first-generation students, low-income individuals, English language learners, and people with disabilities are underrepresented in STEM industries and make up an increasing portion of the overall workforce, but the demographics of STEM fields have remained largely the same. We need more young people to see themselves in STEM!
Throughout the district, students and teachers worked on special STEM projects, and took time to highlight the wonderful work our students do in STEM everyday. Projects included building waterslides, roller coasters, tall towers, catapults, bridges and more!
Some classes chose to join over 60,000 students across the state by participating in the Massachusetts STEM Hub challenge. This year the challenge focused on waste and creating “Zero Waste Solutions”. In Kindergarten through 2nd grade, students studied food waste and created inventions that would help preserve food to stay fresh longer. Students also reflected on the waste created from their own school lunches and snacks. Our 5th grade students learned about the benefits of solar energy as students created and tested Solar Fans.
Our 6th and 7th grade students will be doing a deep dive into micro plastics in the environment. Students will be suggesting strategies for reducing the environmental impact and identifying trade-offs associated with their ideas. After learning the background knowledge on plastics, students will work in teams to use the engineering design process to build a device that will collect micro plastics from a body of water.
Currently our MHS students in Engineering 2 are exploring how different shapes, sizes, and materials of blades affect the power output of wind turbines as part of a unit on sustainable energy sources. Students in our honors biotechnology classes are working with various strains of bacteria to determine the thickness of their peptidoglycan layers using a technique called Gram Staining. The information gathered from these tests can be used to help determine if a particular strain of bacteria is susceptible to penicillin or other antibiotics.
While this week is officially Mass STEM Week, STEM in an integral, consistent component of our science curriculum in the Milton Public Schools. Thank you to our Science Coordinators and Science Department Heads Ellen Lohan, Christie Chiappetta and Amy Tom for their ongoing leadership in our Science curriculum.
HIGH SCHOOL HAPPENINGS
Milton High School Presents: The Addams Family: A New Musical on October 30th, November 2nd and 3rd.
This is the predicament at the heart of The Addams Family: A New Musical, the Tony Award winning musical comedy presented by the Milton High School. Daughter Wednesday Addams has fallen in love with Lucas Beineke whom she intends to marry. But Lucas and his respectable parents, Mal and Alice, may not be ready for the Addams family: dad Gomez, a descendant of conquistadors with a penchant for swordplay; black clad goth mom Morticia; brother Pugsley, whose love of his sister is only marginally greater than his desire to be tortured; Uncle Fester, a man child hopelessly in love with the moon; the centenarian Grandma; and Lurch, their world weary zombie butler who communicates in moans and groans.
While Wednesday hopes to convince her family to be normal for just one night so she can secure her future with Lucas, nothing is ever that easy, especially for the Addams family. A misplaced potion, a barely kept secret, and the revelation of heretofore unspoken truths by both families ensure that the riotously funny evening spins out of control in a way that will change the Beinekes and the Addams family forever.
With a musical score that varies from Flamenco to vaudeville to jazz, swing, ballads and contemporary power pop, The Addams Family: A New Musical is a must-see event for the Halloween season.
The Adams Family, A New Musical can be seen on Wednesday, October 30 at 7:00 p.m.; Saturday, November 2 at 2:00 p.m. and 7:00 p.m.; and Sunday, November 3 at 2:00 p.m. in the Charles C. Winchester Auditorium, Milton High School, 25 Gile Road, Milton.
Tickets are $12.00 and available online here.
Milton High School celebrated Unity Day on Wednesday October 23rd in an effort to promote kindness, acceptance, and inclusion to make MHS a better place. MHS Student Leaders, Student Government, and Best Buddies encouraged all students to wear orange to demonstrate anti-bullying and unity, while Computer Science students created orange binary bracelets. Both faculty and students encouraged kind actions to include those who are feeling left out and to accept people’s differences.
On Wednesday, October 16th, all Milton High School ninth-graders took part in a Digital Citizenship Day. Students rotated around MHS attending eight sessions. Five sessions involved digital citizenship: Digital Wellbeing, Cyberbullying/Sexting, Fake News, Copyright, and Organization with Google. Students also attended a Team Building exercise, Stress Management & Mindfulness, and Principal’s Forum sessions.
The day was a huge success thanks to the session facilitators: Jennie Beliveau, Patrick Ellis, James Jette, Kathleen Kelley, Sean LoPresti, Brian Mackinaw, Dave Mazzulli, Pat Menard, Maura O’Brien, Brendan Tobin, JT Troy.
Pierce Middle School’s GSA club was pleased to join the Milton High School GSA in attending this year’s first Student Leadership Council Meeting provided by the Safe Schools Program for LGBTQ Youth. This was Milton High School’s sixth year attending, and the first year for Pierce GSA members. Students and advisors from all over the Southeast region came together to learn about LGBTQ history (since October is LGBTQ History month). Student representatives from Milton enjoyed connecting with new friends and allies from various schools, and learning about the progression of LGBTQ awareness and laws throughout history. We are excited for the next Safe Schools Council Meeting! Thank you to MHS advisors Jennie Beliveau, Liz Hallisey and Pierce advisors Kelli Prodanas and Erin Jaquette for attending the program with our students and for serving as advisors throughout the school year.
INSIDE OUR ELEMENTARY SCHOOLS
Fifth grade Tucker students recently looked at the artist Heather Galler for inspiration for their bouquets of flowers. Heather Galler is a well known, award winning, professional New York Folk artist. She paints landscapes, animals, and flowers with lots of bright colors.
Collicot and Cunningham elementary music students in Mrs. Allegrezza’s music classes recently enjoyed their first experiences in bucket drumming. Bucket drumming is a style of music that involves drumming on plastic objects, most notably 5 gallon buckets. While the exact origin of the art form is unclear, bucket drumming became popular in the streets of New York in the 1980’s and has evolved into a fun, innovative and captivating way to teach students basic drumming and sticking techniques while reinforcing steady beat, rhythm reading skills and enhancing musical creativity. This new addition to the music curriculum was funded by the Cunningham School PTO mini-grant program in the spring of 2019 which purchased 60 buckets and pairs of drumsticks to outfit both of the music rooms at Cunningham and Collicot. A mini-grant from the Collicot School PTO this fall has provided a plethora of exciting supplementary, high tech materials for the music rooms, including enhancements for bucket drumming, folk dancing, music centers and an introduction to playing the ukulele. Thanks to the generosity of both PTOs, the music rooms continue to flourish and help to encourage our students’ love of music!
As a follow up to last week’s One Book, One School (Each Kindness by Jacqueline Woodson), Glover joined with schools across the country to celebrate National Unity Day on Wednesday this week. National Unity Day is an initiative created by PACER’s National Bullying Prevention Center and is celebrated this year on Wednesday, October 23 in the midst of National Bullying Prevention Month. Students and staff in schools across the country and at Glover wore orange this week in a message of hope and support, visibly showing that our school believes that no child should ever experience bullying. “ORANGE provides a powerful, visually compelling expression of solidarity,” said Paula Goldberg, Executive Director of PACER Center. “Whether it’s hundreds of individuals at a school wearing ORANGE, store owners offering ORANGE products, or a community changing a landmark to ORANGE, the vibrant statement becomes a conversation starter, sending the supportive, universal message that bullying is never acceptable behavior.”
Every student at Glover took the Kids Against Bullying pledge this week and together, we are united in orange, sending one cohesive message of kindness, acceptance, and inclusion at our school.
It’s raffle time once again at Tucker Elementary School! This year the raffle has 22 amazing prizes, including gift certificates to favorite local spots, Patriots and Bruins tickets and even a getaway at the Park Plaza hotel! Raffle tickets are only $10 each and every purchase enters you to win ALL 22 prizes! Want to get in on the fun? Tickets can be purchased online. Don’t know a Tucker student? No problem! Simply enter “Tucker Tiger” in the student name field. Thank you and good luck in the raffle drawings!
FOOD AND NUTRITION
Last week, Milton High School had a visit by a local fisherman from Eastham, MA at all three lunches at Milton High School. Fisherman Alex Cestaro has been fishing all of his life in Cape Cod and he came to our lunches to explain to our students the importance of eating local and sustainable fish while sharing the difficulties of being a fisherman these days with catch limits and weather conditions in the North East.
Mr. Cestaro has been working with Red’s Best, a Boston-based seafood wholesaler for many years. This is Milton Public Schools third year working with Red’s Best, whom provides us with fresh, sustainable fish and in return we help support and provide jobs to local fishermen. At Friday’s lunch we served the “Catch of the Day” topped with whole wheat Ritz crackers and lemon butter or with capers, lemon, and parmesan cheese. This program allows Red’s Best to sell us fresh haddock, hake or pollack at a locked in price which is guaranteed all school year. It was served with oven baked spicy potato wedges, whole wheat dinner roll, sweet glazed carrots and Caesar salad. Just One bite and you’ll be hooked!
PARENT SPEAKER SERIES
Thank you to those who attended PARENT University and for your overwhelmingly positive feedback. We plan to offer PARENT University again in the spring.
Up next in our PARENT Speaker Series, we’ll be showing the newly released film “Screenagers NEXT CHAPTER: Uncovering Skills for Stress Resilience” on November 13th at the MHS auditorium at 6:30pm. The film examines the science behind tween/teen’s emotional challenges, the interplay of social media, and most importantly, what can be done in our schools and homes to help them build crucial skills to navigate stress, anxiety, and depression in our digital age. This film is not available online or via Netflix, it is only available through community events that bring parents/guardians, kids, teens and educators together to continue the conversation about the impact of screen time, digital citizenship, the increase in stress/anxiety and to share ideas and strategies. Parents are encouraged to bring their children ages 11 and up. After the film we’ll have a facilitated Q&A with MPS adjustment counselors. This event is free and open to the public.
A couple of items you may find interesting can be found here: Good Morning America had a recent piece on Screenagers NEXT CHAPTER that you may find interesting. See What Teens Do To Reduce Screen Time (3 min read)
The PARENT Speaker Series is made possible with financial support from Beth Israel Deaconess Hospital-Milton, Milton Public Schools, Milton Substance Abuse Prevention Coalition, Parent Teacher Organizations and Special Education Parent Advisory Council.
We are once again lucky to be partnering with the Milton Fruit Center for Schools Shopping Week November 4th-10th. All six Milton Public Schools will be benefiting from the Fruit Center’s generosity. Here’s how you can participate:
Download a shopping voucher for your school below (you’ll need Adobe Reader). Print as many you’d like and share them with friends, family and neighbors.
Present your voucher when you make purchases at the Fruit Center Marketplace from Monday, November 4th through Sunday, November 10th. Shop as often as you’d like during that week. The Fruit Center Marketplace will donate 20% of the total purchases back to your school so stock up on your favorite Fruit Center items and help out your school! All details and vouchers can be found here.
HEALTH AND WELLNESS
Help your kids make choices that will support their well-being. Participate in the SUPPER Project to learn how!
Milton Public School families have been given an opportunity to participate in a study being conducted by researchers at Tufts University School of Medicine and Brown University. This study is funded through the National Institutes of Health. There are very few openings left in the study for 5th-7th grade students and their parent/guardian.
- Are you a parent or guardian of a child in 5th – 7th grade?
- Do you live with your child or are you in the same place as your child at least five days a week?
- If YES, you may be able to participate in a research study
- Families will be paid for their time
- The purpose of this research study is to understand how to help young people make choices that will support their wellbeing.
Please take a moment to read through the details found here and consider participating in the SUPPER Project. If you are interested, simply email the SUPPER Project team at with the subject line “Interested in the SUPPER Project” and in the body of the email include your name and the name of your child’s school. A member from the study team will reach out to you with next steps. You can also give them a call at (617)-636 –3587.
ART AND MUSIC
On Saturday, October 19th , the Milton Wildcat Marching Band traveled to Wakefield Memorial High School to compete in the Massachusetts Instrumental and Choral Conductor Association’s Marching Band (MICCA) Festival. Performing their halftime show “Latin Triptych” the band earned a three-star overall rating. The highlight of the evening, however, was the highest possible, five-star rating in the category of Music Performance and Achievement and a first time four-star rating in General Effect. The Wildcat Marching Band is led by Senior Drum Majors Ava Duggan, Esme Link, Rowan Leggett and Caleb Smith, Senior Colorguard Captain Kami Nguyen, and Senior Percussion Captains Kate Possi and Aidan Guilderson. Congratulations to these outstanding student musicians! You can watch their halftime show live at all remaining home varsity football games.
Girls Soccer and Volleyball both clinched the tournament this week. Girls Soccer beat Norwood 3-2, scoring in the final 2 minutes to secure their birth. Volleyball beat Fontbonne to punch their ticket, and they hope to finish the season strong against Weymouth and Walpole.
Boys Soccer need a win from their final two games to join the fun, and they travel to Catholic Memorial tomorrow in their first attempt.
The Golf Team ripped off two straight wins to make the tournament last week and finished 5th overall from 11 teams in the D2 South.
Boys and Girls XC will travel to the Wrentham Development Center this Saturday to compete in the Bay State Conference Championships.
This Friday Under the Lights at Brooks Field, the Varsity Football team will be playing for a cure for Breast Cancer. The Crucial Catch program, which started in 2009, is a joint initiative between the American Cancer Society and the National Football League to fund-raise, educate, and raise breast cancer awareness. Cheerleaders will have a 50/50 raffle and will be collecting donations during the game. There will be small prizes and incentive items given for each donation made at the game. Online donations can be made at https://www.crowdrise.com/o/en/campaign/milton-high-school-football1. All donations will be greatly appreciated.
Kickoff is at 7:00 p.m. Please help us make a Crucial Catch against breast cancer. Go Wildcats! With the win, they would lock up the #1 seed and host the first tournament game next Friday, November 1st.
Field Hockey finishes their season tonight against Weymouth High School. Special thanks to Coach Sarah Smith for her years of service!
Last Thursday, Milton Volleyball Hosted Volley for a Cure and raised $550 for Children’s Hospital Pediatric Cancer Unit. In addition to that great win, they also defeated Fontbonne Academy 3-0!
The MHS Golf Team will be hosting a “Cans for Cats” can and bottle drive on Saturday, November 2, 2019, from 9:00 a.m. to noon, at Milton High School. To schedule pick-up of a can/bottle donation at your home on Saturday, please email [email protected].
All game schedules can be found on our MHS Athletics website.
NEWS AROUND TOWN
Join our local rowing programs for our annual fall fundraiser! Get your A- game ready for an official Cornhole Tournament, music, food, drinks, raffles, and more while you gather with old friends and meet new – all while supporting Milton Crew and the Neponset Rowing Club. Buy your tickets now and save – tickets will be $50 at the door.
Interested in making a cash donation or donating an item for the raffle? Email us at [email protected].
National Prescription Drug Take Back Day at the Milton Police Department, 40 Highland St is on Saturday, October 26th from 10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. The Milton Substance Abuse Prevention Coalition and the Milton Police Department are sponsoring our local Prescription Drug Take Back Day. Research has shown that the majority of abuse prescription drugs come from home medicine cabinets. Protect our community and protect our environment by turning in your unused or expired prescription drugs, safely and anonymously. The Rotary Club will have plenty of Drug Deterra bags to distribute to the community as we did earlier this year. If you have time to help during this event by handing out bags, please feel free to stop over between 10:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m.
Middle school, high school students and parents/guardians are encouraged to attend this town wide event:
A speaker on Deaf and Hard of Hearing is coming to Milton on October 30th. Milton’s Commission on Disability is hosting a town-wide event to educate Milton residents on deafness and hearing loss, communication, and assistive technology. Jonathan O’Dell who is Assistive Technology Manager/Training Specialist from the Massachusetts Commission on the Deaf and Hard of Hearing is coming to Milton on Wednesday, October 30th at 7:00 p.m. in the Milton Public Library’s Keys Room. Mr. O’Dell will present information and answer questions on communication, assistive technology, and accessibility-related to persons who have hearing loss and/or deafness.
Americans are likely to experience hearing loss either personally, or in our immediate family and/or circle of friends, as according to the Hearing Loss Association of America, 20% of Americans experience some hearing loss. Anyone who has hearing loss, or who has friends or family members with hearing loss, with whom communication has become more difficult, will benefit from this presentation. Additionally, anyone who has wondered about how to best communicate with people who are deaf, will benefit. All residents are welcome and encouraged to attend. The Milton Commission on Disability will try to have the event broadcast on local access television as well, for those who are unable to attend in person.
Anyone needing reasonable accommodations to access this presentation are encouraged to request them early by contacting Milton’s ADA Coordinator by email to [email protected].
There will be a presentation entitled: Call to Awareness and Action on Maternal Health Disparities and Advocacy at Parkway United Methodist Church Saturday November 2nd, 10:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m. Come join us for a presentation regarding maternal health disparities for Black and Brown women followed by breakout sessions and facilitated discussion. Local healthcare providers will be available to help you learn about resources and support in our area to help you and your family, or to get involved with.
Keynote Speaker: Timoria McQueen Saba is a maternal health advocate, speaker and writer with a focus on mental and physical trauma due to childbirth and pregnancy complications. Timoria will share her personal story of overcoming the mental and physical effects of surviving a near fatal postpartum hemorrhage and also discuss her work as a liaison between clinicians, legislators and patients to address disparities and inequity in outcomes.
Fuller Village is pleased to welcome Dr. George Scarlett, editor of the new web magazine Tomorrow’s Earth Stewards on Tuesday, November 5th at 2:30 p.m. in the Function Room at 1372 Brush Hill Rd. Tomorrow’s Earth Stewards is dedicated to providing support for those involved in nurturing the next generation of earth stewards – those who will care for our planet and help solve its many problems in the years ahead. Dr. Scarlett is a senior lecturer and Tisch Fellow in the Eliot-Pearson Department of Child Study and Human Development at Tuft University. Over the course of his career, he has authored six books, published numerous articles in journals and taught courses on children’s play, on children’s challenging behavior, on religious and spiritual development, and on the development of earth stewards. The public is welcome to attend. For further information, please contact Lisa Ramsay, Program Director at Fuller Village at [email protected] or at 617-361-2116. Thank you to Deborah Felton, Executive Director of Fuller Village for sharing this with the MPS community.
The Massachusetts Department of Transportation held a public information meeting at Fuller Village on Tuesday October 22, 2019 to discuss Route 138 Reconstruction Complete Streets and Safety Improvements. The presentation can be found here.
Registration has opened for the 24th Annual Milton Cotillion. Cotillion is a progressive course in social skills, dance and etiquette education – all learned while having a blast! The classes will run bi-weekly on Sunday evenings beginning January 12, 2020 at the Granite Links Golf Club. Please go to cotillion.com to learn more and register. When you think about adding yet one more activity to your families schedule, it feels good to know that the skills learned at Cotillion will last a lifetime.
Cardinal Cushing Centers, supported by Best Buddies of Massachusetts, is excited to host its inaugural Run to Change Lives Run, Walk or Roll! The race will take place at the Cunningham Elementary School. Participants can register for a traditional 5K, or opt for a 1-Mile Walk or Roll. All abilities welcome!
Runners who register by 10/24 are guaranteed a race shirt. Participants who raise over $50, or Teams of 10 that raise over $200, will each receive a free race t-shirt. Create or join a fundraising team to help us change lives. Our own Pierce Pals have a team – and they would love for you to join them. Be sure to register now!
Brookwood Community Farm is hosting their annual Thanksgiving Sale & Family Fun at the DCR property where they farm from 11:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. on Sunday November 24th. All are welcome to enjoy the farm, walk the farm roads, purchase fresh produce and other items to use for holiday gatherings into the winter. Turkeys can be picked up on site if ordered from Dasilva Farm and produce lists will be published on our website and FB page with at least a week to go before the sale. You will also find honey bee education, lawn games, warm drinks, and maybe a food demo!
As part of our E-blast, we highlight students, teachers or members of the community whose hard work deserves recognition. Please read about some of their accomplishments below:
STAFF and STUDENTS: On October 17th, Milton Public School’s PARENT Speaker Series presented the first PARENT University. The goal of PARENT University was to offer parents and guardians a variety of workshops that focused on promoting the academic and emotional and social well-being of their children and teens through discussions and informative presentations. The evening offered short educational and skill-building workshops led by Milton Public School staff and was well attended with participants whose children included all grades across the district.
A special thank you to the parents and guardians who took time out of their busy schedules to attend and to MHS students, Alex Tran and Nicolas Maldonado, who provided 1-on-1 computer tutorials through demonstrations and guided practice and Jillian Rundlett, Elizabeth Sullivan and Lily Curley who took the skills they have been learning in Child Study to assist with childcare.
Our biggest thank you goes to the MPS staff and community members who contributed their time and talents to bring valuable information to our attendees. Thank you to Elaine Chung, Maggie Wagner, Jayme Szymczak, Dr. Nick Fitzgerald, Lisa Veldran, Noel Vigue, AJ Melanson, Marybeth Callahan, Maureen McClain, Michelle Jensen, Annemarie Quinn, Melissa Augustyn, Erin Jaquette, Caroline Mannion, Tracy Grandeau, Jaclyn Germano, Elizabeth Caruso, Margie Skeer, Mike Buzzel and Maggie Randall for the time and effort they contributed to make our first PARENT University a success. I would be remiss if I didn’t share my appreciation of our Family Outreach Liaison, Marti O’Keefe McKenna, for her leadership in bringing PARENT University to fruition.
Because of Family Outreach Liaison Ms. McKenna, our staff and students who contributed their expertise and our parents and guardians who gave valuable time to attend, our first PARENT University was an overwhelming success. We look forward to offering another PARENT University later in the school year.