Category Archives: Education

Community fundraisers: O’Maley Washington DC trip and GHS soccer at Market Basket and Jalapenos

Local businesses step up for local schools and organizations! Save the dates

In case you’re wondering what’s happening at Market Basket on October 28th 8:30-3pm:

The BAKE SALE at Market Basket is a fundraiser for O’Maley 8th graders annual special trip to Washington, DC. “This important fundraiser is to provide financial assistance to
those who need it most for the trip.” Items can be dropped off at O’Maley on October 27th or at Market Basket at 8:30 on October 28th. Contact Allison Cousins for more details or if you’d like to help out on Saturday, October 28th email Allison acousins@gloucesterschools.com.  Donations and sponsors for the popular calendar raffle are also underway. Here’s a link to last year’s calendar if you’re interested in participating. You’ll recognize those generous sponsors!

In case you’re wondering what’s happening with GHS soccer raffle tickets:

Soccer players are raising money for the soccer banquet, gifts for senior players, and the soccer program. Raffle tickets are $10 each and each packet has 10 tickets. The prizes are listed on the tickets and are for sale through October 29. Winners will be announced at the fall banquet (date/time TBD)

JV2 has a soccer game at O’Maley today at 4pm. Varsity has a big game — Here’s their record “going into tomorrow night’s match vs Salem. Big game!!!!”

varsity record oct 13 2017

 

In case you’re wondering what’s happening at Jalapeno’s on November 6th:

Save the date for Jalapeno’s Night fundraiser for O’Maley Academy on November
6th. Dine in or take out at Jalapeno’s and a portion of their proceeds goes to O’Maley Academy!

Gatorade High School Athlete of the Year gives $11,000 to Special Olympics

Riley James, a Junior at Barnstable High School and two time Boston Herald All Scholastic gave $1000 to a cause near and dear to her heart: Cape Cod Champs Special Olympics. She won the money from earning the distinction of Gatorade MA Volleyball Player of the Year.  Riley went on to win the national Gatorade Play it Forward contest which awarded an additional $10,000! Riley wrote about her friend, Sara, and the programs in Barnstable schools and Cape Cod Champs where she volunteers. Sara is my goddaughter.

Coach Tom Turco led the Barnstable girls volleyball team to 18 Division One State Championships, the most wins in Massachusetts girls’ volleyball history. Turco established adapted physical education in Barnstable.

“Everyone has their needs, just in different ways,” (Coach) Turco 

“You’re only as successful as the will of your players,” Turco said. “You have to practice and take time to develop the will of your players.” 

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Sara loves sports and manages the high school volleyball team. Here she is #16 with the Cape Cod Champs volleyball team at Special Olympics, Harvard, Boston MA. 

The Cape Cod Champs Special Olympics equivalent organization here in Gloucester and throughout Cape Ann is Cape Ann SNAP. Learn more about the Cape Ann Special Needs Assistance Program http://capeannsnap.org/ Local  friends and supporters include: CATA, Azorean, North Shore 104.9, Dunkin Donuts, The Bridge Cape Ann, Turning Point Systems, Maplewood Car Wash, Gloucester House, Beauport ambulance, Protective Packaging, Beauport Princess, George’s of Gloucester, Beauport Princess, USA Demolition, JM Vacation Home Rentals, Prince Insurance Agency, Jalapenos, Sudbay, Passports, Katrina’s, Destinos, Wicked Peacock, Lat 43, and microfiber greens towel. Support also includes Mark Adrian, Lone Gull, Kids Unlimited, Topside Grill, Marshall’s Farmstand and the Fish Shack

Read the fabulous Riley James Cape Cod Champs essay for Gatorade Massachusetts Volleyball Player of the Year, plus a bit more inspiration from amazing Coach Turco

Read more

Whew! Whew! Whew! Hannah Kimberly featured speaker for Cape Ann Chamber Business Women’s Fall Luncheon

Cape Ann Chamber of Commerce Annual Fall Business Women’s Luncheon, October 12, 11:30AM-1PM, Gloucester House, 63 Rogers Street, Gloucester, MA

The Keynote Speaker will be Hannah Kimberly. I was reading Hannah Kimberly’s biography, A Woman’s Place is at the Top, about Annie Smith Peck when I heard the news that Saudi women would be granted the right to drive sometime in 2018 (though they still  need a sign off to marry, divorce, travel, get a passport, open a bank account.) I remember when my mother could get a credit card without my father’s signature. An Annie Smith Peck quote from 1874 brought to light in Kimberly’s research shows Peck knew this pain of persistent lobbying for permission:

“I have reflected for years, I am reflecting, I shall continue to reflect. The longer I reflect, the more convinced I am that it would be wise to go to college. Years ago I made up my mind that I should never marry and consequently that it would be desirable for me to get my living in the best possible way and to set about it as any boy would do. I do not think it is my duty to sacrifice myself, my happiness, and all prospect of distinction, to say nothing of usefulness for the very doubtful pleasure of my parents. Should I remain at home, as some people would have me, I should then be utterly unfitted for active life and should only be a burden to my brothers, useless and unhappy. If I am ever to be anybody or do anything, the time is now…John (her brother) would not have me on par with college graduates? Whew! Whew! Whew! What an opinion must he have of his own and William’s attainments if he considers that I am superior to what they were when they graduated…Why did John not pursue such a course as himself? ‘Too good talents to give them the benefit of a collegiate education.’ Dare you say that aloud? What if you applied it to a young man? Are you crazy? I am not afraid that my fame would be lessened should I be Valedictorian of the class of ’78 (1878!) in Michigan.” -Annie Smith Peck 

Michigan State fans will be happy:

Kimberly writes that in 1874 Peck “wouldn’t be able to place her finger on it at the time, but somehow, within her first semester, like the handful of other women studying the classics, Annie was treated as if she were equal to the men in her class. Indeed it was a blip in the history of co-education — a golden decade — when some of the first groups of women attended the University of Michigan and were recognized as mysterious, capable, attractive, intelligent, and not yet too numerous to be a threat to male power.” – Hannah Kimberly

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The entire O’Maley 8th grade will be seeing classmate Nate Oaks in To Kill A Mockingbird @GloucesterStage!

So cool! Thank you Gloucester Stage, Gloucester Public Schools and GEF

Congratulations, Nate, and Gabriel Magee, another Heidi Dallin Youth Acting Workshop (YAW) actor. Buy your tickets soon-  Gloucester Stage productions sell out and are not to be missed. Read more about Nate and the entire cast

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Gloucester Stage

PAUL MANSHIP #GloucesterMA historic artist home and studio milestone! STARFIELD property purchased and in the news

Read Gail McCarthy article “Local group buys, plans art residency for sculptors’ estate” from the Gloucester Daily Times.

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American artist Paul Manship (1885–1966) was internationally renowned since the 1920s. He maintained multiple homes and studios: two in the Unites States (New York and Gloucester, MA); Paris; London; and three in Italy. This very special purchase–the only one in the world of a Manship property– Starfield, in the Lanesville section of Gloucester, MA, was made possible by the incredible generosity of the Manship heirs, YOU- Gloucester and MA residents (City of Gloucester & the Commonwealth of MA monies were allocated to this initiative), foundations, businesses and private donations. Congratulations to Rebecca Reynolds and all involved. Early supporters included: the City of Gloucester; Massachusetts Cultural Facilities Fund (MassDevelopment in collaboration with the Massachusetts Cultural Council); the Boston Foundation; Essex County Community Foundation; McDonagh Family Foundation; Stella and Charles Guttman Foundation; National Trust for Historic Preservation; Massachusetts Cultural Council; New England Biolabs Foundation; and Essex National Heritage.

Read more about the funding here

Now that the property is purchased, there will be ongoing fundraising to maintain the property and its mission.

If ever there was a forever endowment match sought, this prestigious Manship opportunity would be one to grab!

Follow this link to see rare, original art by Paul Manship, John Manship and Margaret Cassidy that was recently made available FOR SALE to help raise money for this endeavor. Join to support the cause by donating on line through the website, Manship Artists Residency and Studios (MARS). Eventually the historic property will be open to the public and community, and will support working artists.

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There are more than 15,000 historic house museums across the county, and just a few that were artists’ home and studios. One of the most influential is the Pollock-Krasner house in East Hampton, Long Island, established in 1988.  A welcome recent addition is the Winslow Homer property in Portland, ME. Here’s hoping the Manship estate is a member on this Historic Artists’ Homes & Studios (HAHS) map soon. Currently, the Massachusetts sites include Daniel Chester French’s Chesterwood in Stockbridge, and the Frelinghuysen Morris home in Lenox.

Historic Artists' homes & studios GOOGLE map

 

 

Gloucester O’Maley middle school sports fields are beautiful spot to watch home games! Fall 2017 JV and JV2 soccer schedules and original site map for the school

So the 64 geese move out of the way, the bathrooms will be opened, and Gloucester’s O’Maley middle school sports fields are a beautiful backdrop for spectators. Come see the games!

JV 2 home games

Tuesday September 19, 4PM, vs Malden
Monday October 2, 4PM, vs Danvers
Thursday October 5, 4PM, vs Beverly
Friday October 13, 4:30PM vs Medford
Monday October 16, 4:00PM vs Everett
Tuesday October 24, 4:00PM vs Somerville
Friday October 27, 4PM vs Marblehead
Wednesday November 1, 4PM vs Peabody
Thursday November 2, 4PM vs Revere

All the fields are in steady use. Gloucester Public School GHS practices and games for many sports utilize the fields year round, boys and girls. Flag Football (not GPS-GHS run) use the fields on the weekends. Community members walk and run to stay in shape. I wish it was used for recess and gym.  Thank you to volunteers and donors who added amenities and care with the city for super green spaces city wide. Some of the good eggs that helped O’Maley are mentioned on the contributors sign of the Sandy Tucker Memorial Building, “Home of the Riverdale Rockets.”

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The landscape design was  well done when the school was built. Dramatic skies and expansive natural amphitheater are memorable bleachers.

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Early vision proposal for Mill River area that became O’Maley is pretty accurate to the built out site  (30 acre+ middle school site was estimated to cost $4,500,000 in 1971 which roughly equates to 28 million in 2017.) I’ll write more about the history of the O’Maley design and properties.

Before O'Maley - early proposal Mill River site for new middle school

GHS JV2 vs Malden O'Maley Sept 13 2017

JV2 warming up

 

Before the game begins, geese are midfield, non-plussed at the action on the edge.

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The geese moved away by game time.

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Generations watched and cheered family players.

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Go Ethan!

 

All GPS GHS sports schedules can be found at the Mascores website, updated here LINK TO THE SCHEDULES AT MASCORES

varsity games are held at GHS

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JV 2017 fall

 

 

Thoreau, Trails & Sails, and Greenbelt: this weekend’s all about taking the scenic route

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Emily Levin at Essex National Heritage in Salem, MA, where she has directed marketing and events like Trails & Sails for nine years. The original painting commissioned for Essex National Heritage 10th anniversary (2006) was created by local Ipswich folk artist, Julia Purinton. It’s one of three landscapes: Seacoast ; Conservation Lands and Merrimack Valley (Industry)

 

Emily Levin of Essex National Heritage has directed Trails & Sails for 9 years and seen its growth. Levin told me that 2017 is “one of the largest line ups of different events coming together to showcase the region’s best places in the area. The historic road is already right there. Plus you can stop in all the wonderful restaurants and shops.” The Essex National Heritage headquarters moved to 10 Federal in downtown Salem, next to most anyplace on your visit. I’ll miss steady and affable Bill Steelman who has moved on from Essex National Heritage. Congratulations to Kate Day, Danvers former Town Manager, who has joined to lead the Scenic Byway efforts.

Essex National Heritage Trails & Sails 

is Essex National Heritage’s Essex County pep rally-  annual back to back weekends packed with 150+ FREE, fun, and family friendly events. Here’s the working list of the 2017 Trails & Sails events in Gloucester September 15-17th and September 22-24th. Don’t forget to sign in! The count helps your favorite organization and locale, and you might win a prize like $150 from Dick’s Sporting Goods. 

GLOUCESTER GUIDE

 Climb Up City Hall Tower, Hosted by Gloucester City Hall Restoration Commission
September 23 12:00 PM to 3:00 PM

bronze plaques in city hallTalking Walls of Gloucester Gloucester’s renowned Works Projects Administration (WPA era) murals. Hosted at City Hall by The City of Gloucester and Gloucester Committee for the Arts

September 23  12:00 PM to 3:00 PM open for self guided tour
September 23    1:00 PM guided talk and tour 

 

Decorative Painting Demonstration, Hosted by Pauline’s Gifts,
co founder of the new Woman Owned Businesses Along the Essex Coastal Scenic Byway trail map celebrating street level, local women retailers from Gloucester, Essex, Ipswich and Rowley who share a regional ‘Main Street’ – Route 133/1A, part of the gorgeous 90 mile Essex Coastal Scenic Byway. Several planned events for Trails and Sails.

September 16  2:00 PM to 4:00 PM
September 23  2:00 PM to 4:00 PM

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L-R and #  on the Woman Owned Businesses Along the Essex Coastal Scenic Byway map:
#2 Shelly Nicastro, #8 Anne Thomas and next to her one of the dealers in her shop, Connie, #4 Katrina Haskell, #5 Johanne Cassia, #1 Pauline Bresnahan, #6 Ann Orcutt, #3 Georgeanne Richards, Missing from photo #7 Lorin Hesse and #9 Cathy Reardon

 

Gloucester Sea Serpent Hosted by Cape Ann Museum

September 23 10:00 AM to 12:00 PM

Gloucester Sea Serpent Mash-Up at Maritime Gloucester

September 23 12:30 PM to 3:00 PM
Gloucester’s HarborWalk: Select one of three walking toursHosted by the city of Gloucester, permanent outdoor trail and exhibit (Gloucester Sea Serpent HarborWalk marker #19)
September 15-17 (self guided – Open all day) September 22-24 (self guided- Open all day)
Historic Art Trail Walk Hosted by Rocky Neck Art Colony
September 24  2:00 PM to 3:00 PM

Historic Ice House Guided Tours Hosted by Cape Pond Ice Company
Sept 15 2-3PM
Sept 16 11-12 and 1-2
Sept 17 11-12
Sept 22 2-3
Sept 23 11-12 and 1-2
Sept 24 11-12

 

Hosted by Gloucester’s Magnolia Library & Community Center & Iris Weaver

September 23, 2017, 11:00 AM to 12:30 PM

September 16 9:00 AM to 12:00 PM

Step on FISH NET: Gloucester’s Award-winning 300ft Street Art temporary mural Hosted by city of Gloucester and Gloucester Committee for the Arts

September 15-17 (self guided – open all day) September 22-24 (self guided- Open all day)

 

A Weekend With Thoreau 

weekend with throeau 2017

Two more events September 16th:

Greenbelt’s 3rd annual bicycle ‘Tour de Greenbelt’ (begins in Essex)

Paul Cary Goldberg will be giving a short talk at 1pm on Saturday September 16th at Jane Deering Gallery, 19 Pleasant Street, about his photograph series, Here Still, fitting visit during Thoreau and #TrailsAndSails celebrations

Jane Deering Gallery Pauld Cary Goldberg Here Still Thoreau weekend #TrailsandSails

Plus on Sunday September 17th

Fish Box Derby on Rogers Street at high noon

And talk back 4pm at Gloucester Stage following matinee “Flight of the Monarch”

 

2017 Essex National Heritage Trails and Sails #TrailsAndSails

Son of a Gun We Had Big Fun | scenes from #CapeAnnBigBand summer concert at Gloucester’s famous UU Church

WOW! Son of a gun we had big fun on Middle Street Friday September 8, 2017.

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There was an ensemble mix from Cape Ann Big Band self dubbed ‘Jambalaya Horns’ at Gloucester’s famous UU Church for the last Friday Night concert of this popular summer series.  “Music on Meetinghouse Green” passed the hat for the Gloucester Meetinghouse Foundation (GMF) fire sprinkler project, part of the UU restoration efforts.

 

Middle Street was alive with the sounds of New Orleans thanks to the Cape Ann Big Band players: 
Gary Wolsieffer – Tuba/bass
Carlos Menezes Jr. – Saxes/Vocals

Zach Gorrell – Keys/Saxes
Rick Geraghty – Drums/Vocals
Jon Persson – Trumpet
Tom Bones – Trombone
Joe Wilkins – Guitar/Vocals

Anthony Rocco – Trumpet/Vocals

sound snippet solos:

Jon Persson trumpet (9 sec)

 

Zach Gorrell sax (19 sec)

 

Joe Wilkins guitar (13 secs)

 

I missed hearing the students from Gloucester’s O’Maley Innovation Middle School jamming with the Cape Ann Big Band. Carlos Menezes has to be among the coolest school music directors in the country.

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There was a soccer game at Gloucester High School, a short walk and many pleasant route options away. I marvel at Gloucester’s amazing public spaces.

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About the concert series
FREE! “Nine Friday Nights. Nine Great Outdoor Concerts to benefit nine local non-profits.” 
Mayor Romeo Theken likes to remind everyone that “There’s always something going on in Gloucester!” including all the free performances for most every Gloucester Summer NightGloucester MA Free Outdoor Performances Daily…

Can major Gloucester paintings by Edward Hopper and Winslow Homer come back home? Appealing to Bill Gates and private collectors: please remember Gloucester!

Legions of fans visit local, national and international museums to see icons of American 20th century art by Edward Hopper and Winslow Homer. Some of this art was inspired by Gloucester, MA. One more Hopper or Homer Gloucester scene in any collection would be welcome, but in Gloucester it would be transformative.

The City of Gloucester boasts a world class museum that would be the ideal repository for a major Hopper and Homer of Gloucester. It hasn’t happened, yet. It should! I feel not enough of a case has been made for having originals right here in the city that inspired some of their most famous works and changed their art for the better.

Edward Hopper Captain’s House (Parkhurst House), one of the few original Hopper works remaining in private hands, is slated as a promised gift to Arkansas’s Crystal Bridges Museum of  American Art. Crystal Bridges opened in 2011 and will have acquired 4 examples of Hopper’s art — 2 paintings, 1 drawing and 1 print–with this gift. (I think Arkansas would have been ok with 3.)

Edward Hopper Parkhurst's House Captain's House 1924 watercolor private collection 100+ Gloucester homes and vistas inspired Hopper

 

The only known Winslow Homer seascape painting still in private hands is a great one inspired by Gloucester. Bill and Melinda Gates own Lost on the Grand Banks, 1885.  I saw it at the auction house back in 1998 just before the sale.  What a fit for Gloucester and Homer if it found its way back here!

 

Winslow Homer Lost on the Grand Banks 1885

 

Edward Hopper’s Gloucester Street also went to the west coast, purchased by Robert Daly. I’d love to see this one in person! The corner hasn’t changed much since 1928 when Hopper painted the street scene.

 

Gloucester Street edward hopper painting

Gloucester street painted by Edward Hopper TODAY.jpg

 

Hopper’s downtown Gloucester scene, Railroad Gates, is not on public display.

Edward Hopper Railroad Gates Gloucester MA

I’m surprised and hopeful that there are paintings of Gloucester by Hopper that could be secured. There are tens of drawings including major works on paper. I saw this Gloucester drawing, Circus Wagon, by Edward Hopper at the ADAA art Fair back in March 2016.

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Davis House (25 Middle Street) was sold at auction in 1996.

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I’m keeping tabs on most of them. The only way they’re going into any museum is through largesse. Why not Gloucester?

Homer and Hopper watercolors in private collections can’t be on permanent view due to the medium’s fragility. (Exciting developments in glazing and displays are being developed that go beyond the protective lift.) The Cape Ann Museum in Gloucester, MA, cares for works of art as well as any institution.

 

 

Great Schools | Thank you Gloucester! O’Maley Innovation Middle School chromebook bonanza

Thanks to the City of Gloucester, Google and HP- 8th graders received their brand new chrome books tonight. Gloucester O’Maley Innovation Middle School was buzzing with excitement.

Assistant Principal (and beloved former social studies teacher), Mr. Jeff Destino, explained the rules and responsibilities.

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From there,  parents and the 8th grade students headed to the sky high, skylit, art adorned hub, the Commons, set up tonight with temporary tables stacked high with tech.

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Visitors–American Cruises and St Raphael School Retreat

Gloucester was a busy town for visitors yesterday, with the American Cruise line pulling into port, and the St Raphael School Staff Retreat taking a break on Stacy Boulevard.

From the American Cruse Lines

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_2017_08_29_100829 On Retreat from St Raphael School

 

 

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Kay Ellis Memorial Scholarship Fund Raiser

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_2017_08_28_100597 image  A scholarship fund to benefit local students of the tourism and hospitality industry has been set up in memory of Kay Ellis, who worked diligently for many years on many tourism ideas and issues and helped elevate Gloucester as a tourism destination. She loved the maritime and hospitality business and she put her heart and soul into it, working with the Chamber of Commerce and Discover Gloucester, all the while promoting Schooner Lannon. We hope to share her vision through the scholarships

 

 

 

Angela Sanfilippo Honored at “Sea to Supper” at Mile marker

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Fishing Partnership Support Services presents “Sea to Supper and honor Angela Sanfilippo

Back to School Gloucester Public Schools update from Superintendent

The traditional end of summer ‘welcome back’ notice for parents from the Gloucester Public Schools Superintendent has great news for the whole community! I’ve noted funding sources, like Applied Materials, when they were listed, and will add in any that were missed!

Page 1

  • Back to School / Open House dates

 

 

back to school 1

Page 2

  • JOHN BARRY, KURT LICHTENWALD, DAVID SCHNEIDER – amazing teachers’ program receives #1 state and national engineering awards and recognition
  • BACH IS BACK  Gregg Bach has returned to GPS, Assistant Superintendent for Curriculum, Instruction and Assessment
  • JODIE GRENNODIE new Principal at Beeman
  • GHS – FULL ROOF REPLACEMENT great details about the construction project and an earlier update from July 
  • DEADLINE INFO for BUS PASS applications and  FREE/REDUCED LUNCH applications

back to school 2

PAGE 3

  • GHS ERIC LEIGH AND DAVID ENOS write and secure $109,154 biotechnology grant
  • GHS $499,000 WORTH NEW FAB LAB AND EQUIPMENT – Grant awarded for a brand new Fabrication Lab/Maker space and state of the art, industry level equipment for advanced manufacturing and pre-engineering program in  Career and Voc
  • O’MALEY ACADEMY aka after school offerings, directed by the amazing counselor Allison Cousins, have been extended and funded for a 4th year as the program deemed exemplary ($140,250 grant )

back to school 3

Page 4

  • O’MALEY new BioLab space thanks to Applied Materials and MA Life Sciences Foundation
  • O’MALEY band and chorus music room to be souped up acoustically thanks to $136,980 from Gloucester Education Foundation
  • ELEMENTARY SCHOOLS – BUILDING BLOCKS exciting new elementary science program
  • ELEMENTARY SCHOOLS new teacher collaboration opportunities

Read more

Listen to Gloucester’s own author Hannah Kimberley live on NPR’s All things Considered!!

Listen Sunday August 13th at 5pm on NPR for Hannah’s interview about her new book A WOMAN’s PLACE IS AT THE TOP! (Some states may air at different times.)


Share the love folks!! Congrats Hannah!!!

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Top notch GPS O’Maley & Veterans teachers engage Cape Ann Museum, Backyard Growers, and Black Earth Composting thanks to Essex Heritage | North Shore Magazine spotlight

Gloucester Public School teachers shine through the North Shore Magazine September 2017 issue with exemplary projects helped in part by one of Essex Heritage grant programs: “A Park for Every Classroom”.  Essex Heritage supports local initiatives in a big way.

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Congratulations to Gloucester Public Schools dynamite O’Maley Innovation Middle School 6th Grade teachers: Pat Hand, Mary Beth Quinn, and Jessica Haskell!

O’Maley 6th grade students collaborated with the Cape Ann Museum and a local cartographer to create maps of their diverse Gloucester neighborhoods. Part of an effort to get the entire 6th grade community to come together as they experience their first year of Middle School, the project aligned with the curricular focus on geography.  A collection of the students’ maps, called “Gloucester Through My Eyes,” is on display at the Cape Ann Museum.” 

Congratulations to Veterans Memorial Elementary School teachers Laura Smith and Mary Housman!  Their “students worked with Backyard Growers and Black Earth Composting to understand the benefits of composting, created posters and presentations to share their knowledge, implemented and monitored lunch-time cafeteria composting, and used the compost they created to enrich the soil in their school garden.” We were lucky to hear about this project during a pitch night at Awesome Gloucester.

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Farewell Reunion from 6-8PM June 7 retirement tribute for Albina Papows, Mrs. Reis, at the AMAZING Gloucester High School preschool program!

SAVE THE DATE. Farewell Reunion. Retirement tribute. June 7th. 6-8PM. Gloucester Preschool at the High School.

The unusual and innovative preschool at Gloucester High School meshes the education of Gloucester public high school students with a class of 4 year old preschoolers. These two age groups don’t usually interact. How does it work? Albina Papows, that’s how, for forty years.

Albina Papows is a visionary educator.

Along with Mrs. Papows and Mrs. Reis, there were eight to ten high school seniors selected as full-time “student teachers.” Another fifty or so high school students enrolled in 1 to 3 periods a day throughout the week. The high school student teachers were assigned to teams that alternated amazingly coordinated and extensive curriculum…weekly.

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photo: sample weekly news

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below photo: “…this was Allie’s activity. She gave us bee like toys and there were flowers, we made out of paper with bowls in the middle of the room which were filled with glitter nectar and we took the bee toys (which we had decorated) and we put glue on them and then we flew from flower to flower scooping the glitter nectar pollen from the bowls in the flower.”

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Papows designed two classrooms with an access passage between them. This clever hall is a threshold, constructed with a line of cubby lockers along one wall and an immense window along the opposite wall. The “glazing” was actually a two-way observation mirror for viewing into the preschool classroom.

photo: doorway into the cubby entrance to the preschool (Mrs. Papows leaning down to speak to each student as they head out for the day). High school students turned right to enter the high school classroom.

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The program was woven into the high school environment fluidly and effectively. The preschoolers went on “field trips” to the foreign language rooms, the auto mechanic trade rooms, and the library.  Special holidays and events were teaching opportunities and fun. On Thanksgiving, the preschool program prepared not one but three turkeys with full accompanying sides, all cooked and prepared as much ahead with the preschoolers. I am sure Mrs. Papows and Mrs. Reis needed to give up much of their predawn hours to prepare not only for the preschoolers, but for all those hungry high school students! The Gloucester H.S. Preschool teachers and student teachers volunteered their time in the community. I will never forget when they created activities and collected toys and treats for a friend of my sons, a 5 year old little boy stricken with cancer and in a hospital for years awaiting a bone marrow match. They walked at the American Cancer Society Relay for Life and to raise awareness for the “swab to save a life” bone marrow campaign that the little boy needed. Today he is thriving and cancer free.

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On weekends the high school students sent home their school projects which were serious work on their end and magical custom hand made activities and games for our kids.

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I have to thank John and Alexandra, Alexandra’s Bread, for steering my family to this incredible preschool resource.  Upon their recommendation, I made an appointment to visit the program and was immediately bowled over by seeing so many engaged and vibrant young adults–male and female– with so much energy and hope in their faces all directed at these lucky little preschoolers. I vividly recall my mother–who had a long career in education and extensive experience with teacher evaluations– putting her hands on my shoulder to grab my attention when she visited the class for the first time.

“Do you understand how remarkable it is that Mrs. Papows can switch her style back and forth each and every day teaching preschoolers and high school students like that?!  They require completely different skills, approaches and handling!” Ok maybe not ‘handling’.

Ah, no, I didn’t. Her comments did bring back my sons’ first day of school when I experienced Mrs. Papows’ quick social intelligence and observation skills.  She leaned down to study my sons, identical twins, and would not let them pass until she knew them. She did it so fast, I thought,  is she one of those super recognizer people, the ones I’ve read about that are so adept at facial recognition and reading people?

I came to believe that this impressive preschool program was so good that it was clearly a terrific opportunity for Gloucester to reveal an outstanding teaching model. Maybe it could inspire other programs or be replicated across other school systems? So I wrote letters and made phone calls to successive superintendents and principals, some contacts, and a few local and national media outlets about this hidden jewel, urging them to please, please keep Gloucester High School and this inspirational model program in mind and share it. What a great teacher story! What great high school students! At the time, national attention was focused elsewhere.  Forget the preschool and kindergarten at the 92nd Street Y and other private preschools in New York City: here was a local public school facing some economic challenges offering work at a high caliber.

When my kids went to elementary school, there were more great teachers. I thought it would be nice to have a Staff Shine box on the Gloucester Public School and city website. There would be no hesitation which teacher I would write about first.

Now my kids are at O’Maley Innovation and are learning from excellent middle school teachers. When the Honor Roll is published, the list is filled with former Gloucester High School preschool students. Thank you Gloucester preschool at the High School, all the former high school student teachers, Mrs. Reis and especially Mrs. Papows!

Please share the “Farewell Reunion” news so that former students and preschoolers can join in! SAVE THE DATE. Farewell Reunion. June 7th. 6-8PM. Gloucester Preschool at the High School.

LIVE at City Hall: GEF Gloucester Arts Festival

Listen to sweet voices from Veterans school chorus, “Imagine”.

 

Gloucester High School chorus

 

More theater, bands and chorus coming up!

Kurt Lichtenwald and GHS robotics presented at 1pm. GHS has 11  engineering courses — teaching to the top! Showing us Propane furnaces, LADAR, magnetic Newton’s cradle (no sound), a hovercraft that can carry 60 pounds… Design. Build. Modify. (More than one kid behind me said “I can’t wait to go to high school.”) Displayed art by O’Maley Middle school artists throughout City Hall, Cape Ann Museum and Sawyer Free.

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Woodwork display is amazing!

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O’Maley Academy benefit Thursday May 4th: dine and enjoy the Drama Club’s medley of Broadway music and theater!

Mike Springer photograph for Gloucester Daily Times “Olivia Heasley rehearses a scene in “Be Our Guest” a musical revue at O’Maley Middle School…Dinner and drama: Performance meal to benefit  O’Maley Academy 18 (after school) clubs” 

  • Tickets: $10 adults, $5 kids and seniors, $20 per family, includes dinner and medley of Broadway musicals and drama
  • Date: Thursday May 4, 2017
  • Time: 6PM
  • Where: O’Maley
  • O’Maley Drama Club O’Maley Academy

 

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