Spring vacation has arrived!
Board of Education News
The Board of Education met this week and set our LAST student day, as well as the graduation date, for Friday, June 19, 2015. Friday will be a half-day for all students and the graduation ceremony will begin at 6:00 PM outside (weather permitting). Monday June 22 and 23 will be teacher professional learning days for all certified staff. (See our website for the updated 2014-15 calendar.)
The Board also reviewed a report from our Director of Curriculum, Instruction and Technology, Donna Mingrone, who presented members with Portland’s Professional Learning and Curriculum Revision Plan for 2015-2019. This plan will be posted to our website later this month.
Members also approved a Gildersleeve Grant proposal for our new approved football program.
This week, several principals assisted me in reviewing applications for our two open administrative positions. A number of first round candidates have been selected for both positions and interviews will occur later this month. Two different interview teams have been formed. I am grateful to the large number of people who volunteered to be on these committees. Due to the high level of interest, and the need to balance the teams, I could not accommodate all volunteers. We have student, teacher, administrative, BOE and classified staff members serving on the committees.
National History Day
Seven PMS 7th grade students competed in the Manchester District Contest of the National History Day program. The event received more than 250 project entries from around the region, including a record number of middle school entries. All of our students worked incredibly hard throughout the year to prepare outstanding projects focused on topics ranging from Brown vs. Board of Education to the Battle of the Bulge to the legacy of Abraham Lincoln, and they represented Portland Middle School very well.
Special Congratulations to 7th grade student Olivia Runte who won FIRST PLACE in the historical paper category of the middle school competition for her analytical essay about Abraham Lincoln's leadership during the Civil War and the long-term effects of his presidency. Olivia will revise her paper based on the judges' feedback, and she will be advancing to the CT state competition, which will be held at CCSU on Saturday, May 9th! Thank you to PMS teacher Miss Harris for preparing the students and organizing our participation in this event!
Congratulations to Coach Sarah Yaiser and her cheerleading team. This year, Portland had four girls named to the 2015 Shoreline Conference--Senior Sara Colla-1st Team, Senior Morgan Nadeau-1st Team, Sophomore Erin Muskatallo-1st Team, and Senior Mikaela Smith-2nd Team. In addition, on March 24th the Connecticut High School Coaches Association honored two cheerleaders in the Class S Cheerleading team. A banquet was held at the Aqua Turf in Southington to honor Senior Sara Colla and Sophomore Erin Muskatallo!
Congratulations to Gildersleeve’s 4th grade “Future Chefs” finalists who presented their creations at our March 19th event held at PHS. This student competition was based on five rating categories, including, healthy food, kid friendly preparation, fun foods, judges’ choice, and best table presentation.
Many thanks to John White and Sodexo for sponsoring and organizing this event.
· Sarah Black "Fruit Dip"
· Gina Low "Parfait Paradise" (The event 1st Place winner!)
· Camille Kopacz "Apple Berry Salsa with Cinnamon Chips"
· Sarah McNickle "Delicious and Nutritious Salsa"
· Arbella Alexander "Arabella's Awesome Cheese Apple Wrap
I trust that everyone will enjoy the next week as we prepare for our final trek toward summer vacation!
Philip B. O’Reilly, Ed.D.