• May 26, 2022

    Dear Parents/Guardians and Staff,


    What a week we have had. As we continue to process the tragedy that took place in Uvalde, Texas, please remember to give yourselves space to process in various ways. In my letter yesterday, I noted a number of resources to assist with this for both families and staff, but I wanted to reiterate that connecting with one another is more important than ever in times like these. 

    FHTMS School Service Clinician Donna Lemay shared these notes on grief that could be helpful during this challenging time and please remember to be compassionate to yourselves and others. Over the coming days or weeks,

    - You may notice an increase in irritability

    - You may have trouble focusing/concentrating

    - You may have difficulty with quality sleep

    - Some people will never need to talk feelings out and may shy away from those of us who do benefit from talking it out. Be ready to give space to each other when/if sadness surfaces during the work or school day

    - Unexpected death grief is harder and a longer grieving process

    Thank you Donna!

    There is a lot happening in our District as the countdown begins to June 10. Please see some highlights below.

    Dates of Note:

    May 27, RMCS Fun Run

    May 27, Memorial Day Ceremony at Veterans Memorial Park, 10 am (SBHS Chorus will perform!)

    May 27, Orchard School Taekwondo Presentation, Recording by Media Factory

    May 31* (correction from last week) SBHS All Sports Awards Night, 7-9 pm

    June 1, Orchard School grades 2/3 Concert

    June 1, School Board Meeting 7 pm In Person at 577 Dorset and via Zoom

    June 1, SBHS Band Concert with 8th grade band, 7-9 pm 

    June 2, Orchard School Grades K/1 Concert

    June 2, SBHS Academic Awards Night, 7-9, SBHS Auditorium

    June 3, Orchard School Grades 4/ 5 Concert 

    June 6, SBHS Chorus, 7 pm This concert will feature all High School Vocal Music students with special guests, the 8th grade chorus members. This will be livestreamed!

    COVID Update

    Thanks to all of you for your continued efforts as we work to make it through these final weeks of the school year in person! Filling out the RUVNA app has been very helpful and I wanted to let you know that the final day this will be active this year is June 10. Please continue exercising universal precautions so that our end of year celebrations can continue as planned.   

    We encourage all who are eligible, to get the COVID19 vaccine and booster. On May 19, the CDC recommended a booster shot for 5- to 11- year olds who have completed their primary vaccine series at least five months ago. You can get a booster shot through your child’s health care provider, pharmacy, or one of the walk-in clinics listed at the Department of Health website. If you have questions, reach out to your provider. Read more about the CDC's recommendation here.

    Need an antigen, PCR, or LAMP test? Antigen tests continue to be available upon request at all of our schools. PCR, antigen, and LAMP tests are available from the Health Department at a number of state run testing sites for the moment but will be phased out next month. If you have symptoms within 90 days of being infected with COVID, you can still test with antigen tests (not LAMP or PCR). Please check the District’s COVID dashboard often to help make personal decisions around testing, masking and attendance at school. In addition, effective May 18, the state has ceased updating their daily COVID dashboard and instead shifted to a weekly report. You can find the May 25 COVID surveillance report here. 

    We’re Hiring!

    The SBSD is hiring for a number of positions both short and long term and we’d love to have you join us! At the moment, we urgently need subs! 

    Substitute Positions: Daily substitute positions in all departments and locations. HS Graduate, previous experience with school age children preferred

    Interventionist/Paraeducator: Provides K-12 instructional and personal support to students. Associates degree or 60 college credits preferred.

    K-5 Lunchroom/Recess Monitors: Supervise and assist elementary students during lunch and/or recess. Helps maintain a safe and respectful environment. HS graduate or equivalent.

    For more details on open positions, visit www.schoolspring.com Keyword: South Burlington School District, or contact Elissa Galvez, HR Coordinator, at 652-7247 or egalvez@sbschools.net

    School Happenings

    SBHS Students Awarded German Language Exam Accolades

    SBHS World Language teacher Polly Vanderputten reached out with some very exciting news! SBHS student Nicolas Rinelli has been awarded the Gold Medal and special recognition on the National German Exam Honor Roll for outstanding performance on the 2022 National German Exam for High School Students. Also, SBHS student Lukas Berger received the Bronze Medal for his performance on the National German Exam this year. Rinelli and Berger received these awards after scoring in the 90th and 70th percentiles respectively on the Level 2 2022 National German Exam sponsored by the American Association of Teachers of German.

    Over 15,200 students participated in the exam this year. The National German Exam, now in its 62nd year, rewards students through an extensive prize program and provides a means of comparing students in all regions of the US.

    SBHS Student Impresses with Engineering Presentation at IBM

    This week, Career Development Coordinator Nikki St. Mary went to IBM in Essex to watch Marc Berthin (class of '22) do his final presentation for an engineering internship he completed this spring. He learned Python and did an impressive data project related to satellites.St, Mary said, “His presentation was outstanding and he did it in front of 19 IBM engineers...and me!  He plans to attend George Washington University in DC next fall and will major in mechanical engineering with a concentration in aerospace. Marc took my internship class this semester and had an informational interview with an IBM engineer and that led to this awesome opportunity for him!” Way to go! Both of you! 

    FHTMS Gaming Club Wraps Next Week

    Cam Basden, teacher on the Fusion! Team and advisor to the gaming club will be hosting the group’s final meeting of the year next week. Gaming Club saw quite a big uptick in participation as the year progressed. It started with 6 students and the last meeting had over 20 students.  This year, students have played Virtual Reality games, Magic the Gathering games, Atari and Nintendo Switch games, Settlers of Katan, computer games, and chess matches. “You name it, we did it,” Basden said. He added that Gaming club also exposes students to games they may have never heard of, let alone played. Whether that's a specific video game or board game. 

    He added, “I definitely believe that gaming club not only gives students an opportunity to simply hang out, it gives them a chance to meet and get to know like-minded students they may have never met otherwise. Every student, no matter their likes or hobbies deserves a safe place to be themselves, gaming club does that.” I completely agree. 

    Congrats to FHTMS Track on a Great Season!

    Congratulations on a fine season for FHT's Middle School Track Team! Gary Russell let me know that their season began on a high note in April with back-to-back wins at their away meets in Montpelier and MMU. They outscored opponents in the boys division, girls division, and in combined (boys and girls) team scoring.

    Both teams have dominated in a majority of field events (high jump, long jump, shot put, discus) and many of them have qualified for next week's June 3rd. "Champions Meet!"  The last official meet at home concluded May 24th, again with FHTMS outscoring visiting teams in all three scoring divisions! They expect to have a strong showing at next week's "Champions Meet.” Feel free to come and watch the excitement at UVM on June 3rd!

    RMCS Students and Families to Participate in Folk Dances

    Music teacher Hilary Sales said it’s time to put on your dancing shoes! The grades 4/5 Open House Dance is tonight from 6:30-7:30 while the grades 2/3 dance night will take place May 31 from 6:30-7:30 pm.

    Sales noted that folk dances are a wonderful way to teach musical skills like beat, rhythm, form and phrasing. They are also a great way to teach social and emotional skills like working together, including everyone, adapting to the needs of others and fostering respect. Students will be demonstrating a selection of the dances that they have worked on throughout the year and then students will invite families to join in the fun. This is an interactive performance! ALL are welcome to dance! Families do not need to stay the entire time, although they are welcome to!  Dances (4-5) will be cycled through and repeated during the hour. If families can’t arrive right at 6:30, don’t worry! Upon arrival, people can jump right into a dance! They are fun and easy to follow. Looking forward to it! 

    Speaking of Hilary, did you know she’s also a Girls on the Run Coach at RMCS and was recently featured on the radio program WDEV Vermont Viewpoint? Take a listen!

    GCS: A New Kiln is Coming, with a New Name of Course!

    After the beloved kiln at GCS stopped working recently after 22 years of use, Gertrude Chamberlin School launched a "Change is Good" fundraiser where, at each grade level concert, a bucket was placed out for donations. Using this tried and true method, almost $1,000 was raised and Principal Rouelle reported that Vibrant Church has generously offered to fund the remaining $2,000 to cover the cost! The grade level with the highest amount raised will get to name the new kiln. Mrs. Goodrich and Principal Rouelle will be doing a zoom announcement next week to let the school know who the winning grade level is and they will brainstorm and vote on the name by the end of the year. Can’t wait to find out!

    Orchard School’s Spring Fling a Success! 

    The spring fling was back at Orchard School this year! The event is typically held annually, but this is the first time since the pandemic it was able to take place. Organizer Krista Shea noted that around 350 people attended and it was a huge hit! Hannaford donated the popsicles and the evening also had airbrush tattoos from Little Artsy Faces, LLC and outdoor games with The Big Blue Trunk, LLC. Music, arts and crafts and more! To the students’ delight, Mr. Trifilio even played several rounds of Gaga ball. Beautiful weather and parent/guardian volunteers made for a seamless and fun event for all. 

    Have a great Friday and enjoy the long holiday weekend!