Thursday, February 22, 2024

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Start Time Issues Brought to School Board

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West Hartford high school students will have the opportunity to start school later, but Westport students already have a similar luxury.

During Monday’s Board of Education meeting, Hadley Rose, RTM District 3, said the board should examine the West Hartford plan.

Under the plan, he said, school would still run 7:30 a.m. to 2:15 p.m. and there would be no impact on extra curricular programs, including sports.

In West Hartford, he said, juniors and seniors are being given the opportunity to schedule a study hall during first period.

Well Known Westporter Ralph Sheffer Dies at 93

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Ralph Sheffer: shown celebrating his 92nd birthday last year. WN File photo
Ralph Sheffer, a key figure in the arts, politics, education, and business of Westport in a career that spanned 60 years—including a record 10 years as moderator of the Representative Town Meeting (RTM) from 1959 to 1969—died today at his Westport home, his daughter, Ann Sheffer said.

Sheffer, who turned 93 last week, had been in declining health for some time.

“Westport has lost a leader and a treasure,” said First Selectman Gordon Joseloff, who ordered town flags flown at half-staff in Sheffer’s honor. “He truly was one of the ‘town fathers.’ We are deeply saddened by the news and extend our sincere condolences to the Sheffer family.”

Ann Sheffer said the family will be sitting shiva Wednesday from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. at her home at 19 Stony Point Road. A memorial service has been scheduled for Westport Town Hall on Monday, Oct. 9, at 11 a.m.

Library to Hold Community Conversation

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Audrey Chapman: Discussing stem cell research. Contributed photo
With the debate about stem-cell research a continuing headline in the news, the Westport Public Library is presenting a Community Conversation on the topic on Wednesday at 7:30 pm, in the McManus Room.

Audrey R. Chapman will lead the discussion on the ethics of research on human stem cells.  She is the first holder of the Healey Endowed chair in Medical Humanities, Law and Ethics at the University of Connecticut Health Center.

The program is free and open to the public.

For more information, call 203-291-4840 or visit www.westportlibrary.org.

Westport Schools Add 64 New Teachers

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Westport school officials added 64 new teachers this fall, and of those almost 38 percent had no experience.

The Board of Education discussed a staffing report during its meeting Monday night.

Schools Superintendent Elliott Landon said the vast majority had experience before coming to Westport, and nine of the teachers had earned tenure elsewhere in Connecticut.

The number of new teachers added to the district, however, is down from previous years by at least 36 percent, he said.

Joanne Woodward Injured in Fall, Misses Playhouse Gala

Joanne Woodward, artistic director emeritus of the Westport Country Playhouse, missed tonight’s Playhouse gala tribute to composer Stephen Sondheim because she was injured in a fall earlier today at her Westport home, organizers announced. WestportNow.com Image
Joanne Woodward: cuts required five stitches. WN file photo/Dave Matlow

“She required five stitches,” Anne Keefe, the Playhouse’s associate artistic director, told the audience from the stage at the start of the program. Many of the guests gasped when they heard the announcement.

Keefe said Woodward, 76, who was to co-host the affair with her husband, Paul Newman, took the fall while walking her two dogs, both Miniature Schnauzers. She said the cuts were to Woodward’s face.

Newman was also absent from the sold out performance of “The Ladies Who Sign Sondheim.” The tribute starred Laura Benanti, Kristin Chenoweth, Barbara Cook, and Patti LuPone. Sondheim was in the audience.