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Thursday, September 03, 2015



Thursday, August 06, 2015

Coming to a School Near You: Ratings from 1 to 5

By Jacqueline Rabe Thomas

NEW HAVEN — Every public school in Connecticut will be rated 1 through 5 this winter.

In addition, every high school junior will be required to take the SAT test as opposed to the Smarter Balanced Assessment, a controversial exam aligned to the Common Core State Standards.

And teachers will have another year before student test scores begin being factored into their evaluations.

Those are just a few of the changes that the U.S. Department of Education approved for Connecticut schools today. Connecticut had asked for flexibility to make the changes under the No Child Left Behind Act so it would not be penalized under the law’s rigid requirements.

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Posted 10:05 PM
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Tuesday, August 04, 2015

Newman’s Own Selects First Fellows

Westport-based Newman’s Own Foundation today announced its first formal class of fellows.

The innovative Newman’s Own Foundation Fellowship Program provides recent college graduates with work experience in the philanthropic sector. In addition, the program is designed to expand, enhance, and diversify the pipeline of new talent entering nonprofit careers, an announcement said.

The Fellows were selected based on demonstrated leadership skills, as well as commitment to social issues and community development. They have been placed at nonprofit organizations in roles aligned with their capabilities and career interests.

The placements were made by Newman’s Own Foundation in collaboration with the nonprofits.

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Posted 11:15 AM
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Monday, July 27, 2015

Ed Board Picks Search Firm for Landon Replacement

The Westport Board of Education tonight approved the hiring of search firm Hazard, Young and Attea (HYA) to help replace Schools Superintendent Elliott Landon set to retire next June after 17 years.

According to a school board statement, Hazard, Young and Attea is the Executive Search Division of ECRA Group, Inc. “with an extensive history of success in working with boards in high-performing districts throughout the Northeast and across the country to find candidates who will provide long-term leadership .”

School officials said that of the 328 superintendents hired with HYA’s assistance since 2000, 90 percent led their districts for several years.

“The selection of a new superintendent is the most important responsibility of any Board of Education,” said Michael Gordon, school board chairman.

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Posted 10:18 PM
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Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Visiting a Singapore Broadcaster Image
Staples High School student Rachel Corbally (r), 17, was one of students from 13 nations who made a visit today in Singapore to the Republic’s leading broadcaster, MediaCorp. They gained hands-on experience working with professionals as they learned about television and radio broadcasts. Rachel is one of three Staples students attending the Hwa Chong Asia-Pacific Young Leaders Summit 2015, which continues until Tuesday. Other Staples attendees include Angela Yu and Aliza Gross along with chaperone Mary Fulco, a Staples English teacher. Staples hosted nine Hwa Chong students last November. (See WestportNow Nov. 7, 2015) (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Contributed photo

Posted 05:49 PM
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Monday, July 20, 2015

Comings & Goings: Zaniac to Post Road East Image
Zaniac, a national STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) educational business that provides F-8 after-school programs and camps to help youths in math and science instruction, opens next month at 1391 Post Road East, near Balducci’s. Zaniac engages and integrates a multi-disciplinary approach to problem solving with the aid of Zaniac Robotics, LEGO, game-based learning: Minecraft, 3D printing, app creation and computer programming, according to an announcement. Zaniac, which maintains corporate offices in Utah and Miami, opened its first classroom in Greenwich in December 2013. Its owners there, Greenwich residents Camilla Gazal and Flavia Naslausky, are also owners of the Westport business. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for

Posted 10:11 PM
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Friday, June 26, 2015

Staples Interim Principal Picked, More Searches Needed

By James Lomuscio Image
Mark Karagus: Trinity Catholic principal takes interim job. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Contributed photo

An educator with 37 years experience has agreed to serve as interim principal of Staples High School for one year while the administration continues its search to replace John Dodig, Schools Superintendent Elliott Landon announced today.

Mark W. Karagus, 64, of Trumbull most recently served as principal of Trinity Catholic High School in Stamford, and has many years experience as a guidance counselor, assistant principal and housemaster, Landon said.

“He has the background and experience that I believe should serve Staples High School well during this transitional interim period,” Landon said.

The transitional period, however, is not limited to finding a Dodig replacement.

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Posted 11:26 AM
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Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Orphenians on Yankee Stadium Big Screen Image
The big screen scoreboard at Yankee Stadium tonight showed the Staples High School Orphenians singing the national anthem behind home plate. An adjacent big screen identified them as being from Staples High School (without identifying the school’s location—but Westport was mentioned by the public address announcer.)  Anxiously awaited for months by the Staples singers, the appearance was delayed one hour and 21 minutes by rain before the game against the Philadelphia Phillies began. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Heather Hychko for

Posted 08:32 PM
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Stadium Closeup Image
The Yankee Stadium crowd tonight got a closeup view of the Orphenians performing the national anthem. This was among the images projected on the scoreboard screen in center field. See the complete Yankees scoreboard video here as well as a video shot by Staples media teacher Jim Honeycutt here, including some of the Orpheneians greeting Jimmy Fallon and Lorne Michaels in seats behind home plate after their performance. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) New York Yankees photo

Posted 08:30 PM
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Another View Image
Another view of Luke Rosenberg leading the Staples High School Orphenians tonight at Yankee Stadium. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) New York Yankees photo

Posted 08:28 PM
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Thursday, June 18, 2015

Capturing a Graduation Moment Image
Posing for a post-graduation picture at Staples High School today were l-r) Megan Weintraub (going to Elon), Katherine Sommers (Marist), Sydney Robison (Union), Sammy Phillips (Chapman) and Sydney Sussman (George Washington University). (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for

Posted 04:40 PM
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Headed Off to Colorado, a Family Tradition Image
Staples High School 2015 graduate Tessa Mall, 17, poses with parents Joan and Lou who said Tessa is the fourth generation of the Mall family to attend the University of Colorado.  Lou’s sister graduated from Colorado in 1976, Lou in 1971, Lou’s mother in 1931, and a cousin of Lou’s grandfather in 1905 (undergraduate degree) and in 1907 (law degree.) (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for

Posted 04:35 PM
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A Day They Will Remember Forever

Scenes from today’s 2015 Staples High School graduation. Dave Matlow for

Posted 04:30 PM
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Landon: ‘Go Out and Change the World’ Image
Westport Schools Superintendent Elliott Landon, who has announced his retirement at the end of the next school year after 17 years, today wished the graduating Class of 2015 well and told them to “go out and change the world.” He added, “My advice to each of you ... is that throughout the years ahead make it your determination to be courageous and with that courage to support and defend and advocate for the inalienable right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, not just for yourselves, but for every person residing within the shores of our great nation.” Dave Matlow for

Posted 02:57 PM
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‘I Am So Excited to See What We Accomplish’ Image
Staples High School valedictorian Everett Sussman today addresses the Class of 2015 graduation ceremony. “It seems to me the class of 2015 can be best described as a river originating from very differnent places,” he said. “We are the drops of water and our futures are uncertain, but wherever we wind up, we all share the collective spirit of Staples High School….I am so excited to see what we accomplish in the years to come.” Everett will be attending Harvard University in the fall. Dave Matlow for

Posted 02:26 PM
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Packed House Image
The Staples High School field house was packed for today’s Class of 2015 graduation ceremony. This year’s graduates numbered 462. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for

Posted 02:18 PM
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