CONNECTIONS: A Newsletter from the Somerville Public Schools – April 11, 2014

Hope you’re enjoying the beautiful spring weather! Here’s an update on the end-of-the-year school calendar:

Last day of school for the 2013-2014 school year: Wednesday, June 25, 2014 (Half Day)
June 19th, 20th and 23rd are full school days
June 24th is a Half Day for preK to Grade 8 students, a full day for High School students
June 25th is a Half Day for ALL students


News & Notes

Somerville High School Chorus Earns Silver at WorldStrides Heritage Concert
The Somerville High School Chorus,
under the direction of Ms. Beverly Mosby, posted another outstanding performance at the WorldStrides Heritage Foundation Eastern Regional Competition held in Nashville, Tennessee this year. The SHS Chorus earned their second silver medal in as many years at this competition, competing against 12 other groups from around the United States. Somerville High School was the only group from Massachusetts to be invited to this event, and the only group in the competition whose Chorus is open to all students, regardless of singing background. During their trip last weekend, the SHS Chorus also visited President Andrew Jackson’s Estate – The Hermitage, a historical plantation and museum located in Nashville. They also stopped by the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum.


Baptista Makes Globe All-Scholastic; 19 Highlanders Earn All-Star Honors
Melissa Baptista, senior guard for the Somerville High School Basketball team, was named to the Boston Globe All-Scholastic team. Melissa averaged 20.9 points and 12 rebounds per game this season. Nineteen (19) other SHS student-athletes earned Boston Globe All-Star honors this year: Ella Tyler (Girls’ Basketball); Fru Che and Rayoni Matos (Boys’ Basketball); Cam Alves (Boys’ Hockey); Kaba Alison, Saragrace Magre, Catherine Nakato, Melissa Sanon, and Amber Theobold (Girls’ Track); Joao Batista, Nigel Baugh, Marcelo Brociner, Demar Chapman, Travis Dolcine, Malcolm Ducasse, Kevin Ma, and Ben Pierre (Boys’ Track); and Rachael Berry and Marisa Rafal (Girls’ Swimming).


Britney Flores, Tatiana Pineda perform at Boston’s Seaport Hotel as members of first Massachusetts All-State Treble Chorus
On Saturday, March 22, 2014, Somerville Public Schools fourth-grade students Britney Flores (East Somerville Community School) and Tatiana Pineda (Argenziano School) sang with the first annual Massachusetts All-State Treble Chorus at the Seaport Hotel in Boston. Britney and Tatiana were among 200 students selected for this exclusive All-State Chorus made up of students in grades 4-6. Choir members were selected from a pool of about 600 students from across Massachusetts who went through a competitive audition process.

The March 22nd Concert was directed by renowned choral conductor Henry Leck of the Indianapolis Children’s Choir, offering students a wonderful musical learning experience. The All-State Chorus performed during the Massachusetts Music Educators Association Conference. SPS Music Educators Adam Epstein and Paul Barringer, who work with Britney and Tatiana, respectively, were among those who enjoyed a spectacular concert. (Pictured are ESCS’s Adam Epstein and Britney Flores.)

West Somerville Neighborhood Students Win Fair Housing Poster Contest
West Somerville Neighborhood School students Arshpreet Kaur and Riley Williams were chosen as the winners in the April Fair Housing Month poster contest sponsored by the Somerville Fair Housing Commission. To acknowledge their achievement, the students will have an opportunity to meet with Mayor Joseph A. Curtatone at Somerville City Hall. Congratulations, Arshpreet and Riley!

Healey School Students Showcase Work at Middle Grades Science Fair
Healey School 7th and 8th graders showcased their work at the Healey School middle grades Science Fair this week. Students presented to younger classes, to visiting parents and to judges. The top projects will win awards. The students researched their topics, designed experiments, collected data and developed visual materials to support their findings. Younger students who stopped in were excited and inspired by the presentations, asking pertinent questions and thinking about their own work in science class.

Luminous Musician Joh Camara at the Argenziano
Read the Somerville Journal article to learn more about Master Drummer Joh Camara and his great work with Argenziano students this year:


32 Inducted into Somerville High School National Honor Society
“I pledge to uphold the high purposes of the National Honor Society to which I have been selected;
I will be true to the principles for which it stands;
I will be loyal to my school;
and will maintain and encourage high standards of scholarship, leadership, service, and character.”
Thirty-two Somerville High School seniors made that National Honor Society Pledge last week at the 2014 SHS National Honor Society Induction Ceremony, held at the East Somerville Community School. 2014 Inductees were: Kenneth Allen, Miles Bain, Melissa Baptista, Yanira Barrera, Catello Battinelli, Stave Been-Francois, Rachael Berry, Robert Bingham, Marcelo Brociner, Celia Conte, Fabiana Da Silva, Jennifer DiPersio, Ariela Esmurria, Yuying Guo, Kellie Hagerty, Susan Hassan, Palwinder Kaur, Adrianna Keefe, Celine Lessard-Brandt, Caitlin Lewis, Meghan Lynch, Kevin Ma, Llaquelin Miguel, Thanh Nguyen, Jennifer Oliveira, Shanshan Ou, Anthony Scrima, Talya Sogoba, Laxmi Spearing, Ella Tyler, Alexandra Wood, and Brianna Xavier.

What’s Happening

Tuesday, April 15: Best buddies Dinner Banquet Fundraiser
Join us Tuesday evening at the Highlander Café at Somerville High School for an evening of good food and great friendship. The Best Buddies Dinner Banquet Fundraiser kicks off at 6:00pm and runs through 8:30pm. Price is $15.00. If you’re not able to join us for dinner but wish to make a donation, please make check payable to SHS Best Buddies. Contact Best Buddies Advisor, Mrs. Ana Caldeira (, for more information.

April: National Poetry Month
Kid! and Snowflake! multimedia magazines are building their second annual online Poetry Wall. All students in grades K-8 in Somerville and everywhere are invited to submit one or more of their best original poems they have written. Poems should include the poet’s name and, for contact purposes only, his/her grade, school and teacher’s or parent’s name. Please send all poetry to The wall will be built during April, but submissions are welcome any time. Poems on the wall are eligible for possible selection for a future print edition of Snowflake! or Kid! magazine.

April: “Charlie Bubbles” Comes to Somerville
Just in time for baseball season, Charlie Bubbles from The Adventures of Charlie Bubbles book series presents “Charlie Bubbles to Fenway.” Author Paul Carafotes, a Somerville native, will be in Somerville to talk about his new book in The Adventures of Charlie Bubbles series later this month. Learn more about the author and his “Bubbles Tour” in a Somerville article published October 2013.

To find out more about Charlie’s visit to Fenway, stop by on: Friday, April 25, 10:30am at the Daddy Jones Bar, 525 Medford Street (seating is limited for this event, please rsvp to; Saturday, April 26, 11am-1pm at the Somerville City Club, 20 Innerbelt Road (seating is limited for this event; please rsvp to; Saturday, April 26, 2:30pm at the Somerville Public Library, 79 Highland Avenue. For more information about Charlie Bubbles, visit

Join the Learning Adventure with Somerville Adult Evening Classes
Welcome the spring season by treating yourself to an opportunity for personal growth. Learn a new skill, or polish up on a particular interest. Evening school enrollment is open, but DON’T DELAY. Some classes are under way!
· Last Chance for Teens needing Drivers Ed before summer! Starts April 15. See below for details.
· Lecture Series:
o Declutter your paperwork!: $20 – Tuesday, May 13, 7-8:30pm
o Extreme Couponing: $25 – Tuesday, May 13, 6-8:30pm ($5 discount for PTA members)
o Financial Planning and Beyond: $15 – Tuesday, May 20, 6:30-8:30pm
· Classes in:
o YOGA: $25 for six (6) 1-hour classes: April 8, 15, 29 and May 6, 13, 20; 7:45-8:45pm (drop-in $7/class)
o Gold Zumba: $25 for five (5) 1-hour classes: April 29 and May 6, 13, 20, 27; 6:30-7:30pm (drop-in $7/class)
o Furniture Making: $120 for eight (8) 3-hour classes: April 10, 17, May 15, 22, 29 and June 5, 12, 19; 6-9pm (drop-in $15/class)
o Driver’s Education: $50 to register, $590 for twice a week for 5 weeks: April 15, 17, 29 and May 1, 6, 8, 13, 15, 20, 22; 6:00-9:00pm
o Sewing: $15 a class; Thursdays, 6-9pm; No sewing machine needed!
o Spanish: $15 a class; Tuesdays, 6-8pm; April 8, 15, 29, May 6, 13, 20, 27 ends with a Spanish dinner celebration.
o English, History, Math, Science, Medical Interpretation: $15 for most classes, others bundled for a bargain; both Tuesday and Thursday evenings; 6-9pm
Register by phone or in person. Call: Evening School Principal Sophia Carafotes at (617) 628-2594, M-F 8am-4pm or Tuesday and Thursday evenings at (617) 625-6600, x6100, 6-9pm. To register in person, stop by the Somerville High School Main Office (81 Highland Avenue) any Tuesday or Thursday evening between 6-8pm prior to the start of the course, or on the night of the course. Pay by check or money order made payable to Somerville Adult Evening School.

This week in the schools:
Visit your child’s school website,, and click on the “calendar of events” link at the top of the page for a complete list of all the activities happening at school this month.
Friday, April 11th, 2:45-5:30pm: ESCS Math Activity Afternoon, at the East Somerville Community School (50 Cross Street)
Friday, April 11th, 6:00-8:30pm: ESCS 7th/8th Grade Dance, at the East Somerville Community School (50 Cross Street)
Friday, April 11th, 6:30-8:30pm: Healey School K-4 Dance, at the Healey School (5 Meacham Street)
Friday, April 11th, 7:00-11:00pm: Junior/Sophomore Gala, in the SHS Field House (81 Highland Avenue)
Tuesday, April 15th: Best Buddies Dinner, at Somerville High School Highlander Café (81 Highland Avenue)
Wednesday, April 16th, from 1:00-2:45pm: 1st Annual Band Festival, at the East Somerville Community School (50 Cross Street)
Wednesday, April 16th, from 3:00-4:00pm: AFAS School Council Meeting, at the Argenziano School (290 Washington Street)
Wednesday, April 16th, at 4:00pm: Healey School Council Meeting, at the Healey School (5 Meacham Street)
Thursday, April 17th: Healey Family Breakfast (Grade 6 & Ms. French), at the Healey School (5 Meacham)
Thursday, April 17th, from 8:30am-1:30pm: AFAS Grade 8 Field Trip to the Museum of Fine Arts
Friday, April 18th: NO SCHOOL – Good Friday
Monday-Friday, April 21st through 25th: NO SCHOOL – Patriots Day and April Vacation

Upcoming School Committee Meetings
You can find the complete School Committee schedule, agendas and meeting minutes (as approved) online at

Monday, April 28th, at 7:00pm: School Committee Regular Meeting, in the Board of Aldermen’s Chambers of Somerville City Hall (93 Highland Avenue)

Community Events
· Saturday Homework Help for Teens at the Somerville Public Library: FREE math, science and writing support at the Somerville Public Library (SPL) Central Branch. Saturdays, 1:00-2:30pm in the SPL Teen Room. No appointment is necessary. Teens just need to bring your work.
· Saturday, April 12th, 8:30am-4:30pm: Youth Mental Health First Aid – A Community Training Open to the Public. Learn about risk factors and warning signs of a variety of mental health challenges common among adolescents. Learn how to assess for risk of suicide or harm, how to listen nonjudgmentally, give reassurance and information, encourage appropriate professional help, and encourage self-help and other support strategies. Registration required. $25 donation suggested. For more information, contact Patty Contente (617) 625-6600, x4325 or
· Sunday, April 13th, starting at 10:30 a.m.: 5th Annual Shape Up Somerville / Recreation 5K Road Race. Race starts and ends at the Somerville High School concourse, 93 Highland Avenue. The day begins with a 1-mile children’s “Fun Run” at 10:30 a.m., followed by a 5K adult race & walk at 11:00 a.m. Registration is open to all community members; $5 for youth under age 10, $20 for adults. Price includes a commemorative t-shirt, refreshments and a celebration following the adult race. Register at, or stop by City Hall or the Recreation Department (19 Walnut St.) for printed applications. Checks should be made payable to Somerville Youth and Recreation Foundation (SYRF), and can be mailed or delivered to Somerville Recreation, 19 Walnut Street, Somerville, MA 02143. For additional information, call 617-625-6600 ext. 2980.
· 2014 Tufts Kids’ Day. Join the fun! Registration is open for the annual Tufts Kids’ Day event, scheduled for Saturday, April 19. Now in its 51st year, the event is organized to provide local children in grades K-3 with a day of learning and fun, including carnival rides, a chemistry show, and a magic show. For more information and registration details, visit
· Sunday, April 27, at 1:00 p.m.: Cat Mountain, presented by Behind the Mask Theatre at the Geological Lectur Hall (24 Oxford Street, Cambridge). Original adaptation of a magical Japanese folktale featuring puppetry, dance, masks, and Japanese theater styles. After the performance, join the actors in the Peabody Museum for a mask-making workshop! Ages 4 and up. For tickets and information, $5 advance registration includes free Museum admission.
· Sunday, May 4th: Project Bread’s Walk for Hunger. Register and Pledge to make a difference in your community at Project Bread’s annual Walk for Hunger. Every May, more than 40,000 people walk a 20-mile course through Greater Boston, raising awareness of the reality of hunger in Massachusetts. To find out how you can get involved and make a difference in your community, visit
Looking Ahead
Check our online Calendar of events ( for more information.
· Monday, April 21st – Friday, April 25th: NO SCHOOL – Patriots Day and April Vacation
· Monday-Friday, April 28th-May 2nd: Healey Book Fair
· Monday, April 28th: Friends of Healey Fundraiser @ Redbones
· Tuesday, April 29th: Kennedy PTA Conferences
· Wednesday, April 30th: AFAS Grade 5 Visit to Otis House
· Wednesday, April 30th: Next Wave/Full Circle PTA Conferences
· Wednesday, April 30th: SHS PTSA Conferences
· Thursday, May 1st: SHS NACAC College Fair Field Trip
· Thursday, May 1st: Argenziano PTA Conferences
· Thursday, May 1st: SHS Spring Concert
· Friday, May 2nd: Somerville Council of PTA’s 40th Annual Dinner Dance


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