Message March 7, 2016

1.   We are all very proud of our outstanding students and staff.  Here are a few of the many recognitions and honors that have been awarded recently:

  • GHS junior Jack Saffian wins 2nd place in the state for his essay on special needs, sponsored by the Maine Developmental Disabilities Council. 
  • GHS and GMS Civil Rights teams and the Unified Basketball team worked together on a project bringing awareness to both schools about sensitivity towards students with special needs in a day-long "Spread the Word to End the Word" campaign.
Civil Rights Team "Spreads the Word"
  • GHS students Evan McCarthy and Charlotte Benoit win the Western Maine student athlete awards.
Evan McCarthy, GHS Principal Dan McKeone & Charlotte Benoit

  • GMS student Christopher Martucci qualified for the state-level National Geography Bee.
  • The National Honor Society welcomed 41 inductees this year at a candlelight ceremony.  Many thanks to advisor Jason Curry, Katie Dexter, and the NHS Faculty Council.
  • The modern classical language societies, including Spanish, French, and Latin, welcomed 49 students to its ranks.  Many thanks to society advisors Grace Leavitt, Pat Thibeault, and Seth Knowles.
  • Boys Varsity ice hockey team, led by Coach Barry Mothes, earned the Class B South Sportsmanship award.
  • The Greely Color Guard, led by Coach Carrie Begley, was invited to perform at the Expo during a Red Claws game.
Greely Color Guard at the Portland Expo Feb. 26

  • MIW teacher Mary Train was flown out to California by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to receive an award honoring her work around STEM education.  Mary has been active with fellow MIW teacher Beth Cory and GHS science teacher Julie Opperman to promote STEM in the elementary grades.
  • GMS world language and art teacher Zanny Wood named by Phillips Exeter Academy as an "influential educator" based on a nomination from a former student.
  • GMS student Malcolm Bourgeois won the New England regional archery competition for his age group, placing among the best in the nation for his skills.
Malcolm Bourgeois
Photo courtesy of Portland Press Herald

2.  A survey was sent out to parents of students in grades K-4 regarding interest in before-school supervision in order to maintain the current drop-off time of 8:00am at the elementary level.  122 families responded, with roughly 11% saying they would use this service regularly and 7% indicating they would use it occasionally.  A rough estimate based on this survey tells us that a minimum of 75 K-5 students could be dropped off at 8am on any given day, and possibly could be as high as 120 students. We will be reviewing this information in order to determine next steps.

3.  I will be presenting the FY 17 budget at the next Board meeting on March 21.  An early estimate of our expenditures shows an increase of about 4.3% over the current year.  The tax impact will be lower than this based on projected revenue figures.