TSA Newsletter, March 31st, 2017

Posted by on Mar 31, 2017 in Newsletter

The Sharon Academy

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Calendar of Upcoming TSA Events

April 2017

Wed 5 HS Quarter 3 Ends
Tues 11 Screens and Teens Parent Support Group Meets at the HS – 5:30pm – 6:30pm
Fri 14 HS & MS Student/Parent/Teacher Conference Day – No School
Sat 15 April Break Begins – Classes Resume Mon, 4/23


Get Your Tickets Now for TSA’s “Coming of Age” Party – We are turning 21! This is one of TSA’s most wonderful annual community events. Come join the fun on April 29th from 7pm – 11pm for TSA’s Fundraising Gala!  More information, including how to buy your tickets, can be found here: Gala

The TSA School Calendar for 2016/2017 is available.  To download a copy, please click here: TSA 2016/17 School Calendar


TSA has received confirmation that we will soon be receiving $138.00 for our recent shipment of 1380 of the boxtops for education stickers you have sent in to support the school.
These monies are held in reserve to be used whenever we see a student in need where a little financial help could be the answer. Thanks to all of you who contributed! Our efforts continue, so those of you who have yet to notice the symbol on the side of some food products (butter, granola bars, soups) and household products (toilet paper, napkins) can get on the bandwagon with us and help make a difference. Boxtops can be sent in to Charlie McMeekin, or may be dropped in a marked envelope which is hanging on the bulletin board outside of Janice’s office.


TSA MS Circus thank you’s:  A huge thank you to all MS Parents for making our 11th annual circus a roaring success.  We had over 650 people in the audience over the two performances, and both shows were really well done.  We could not have pulled this off without all of the support that the parents and staff give to this adventure, so thank you so much for helping to make this special event happen.  We are so proud of our students and the way they put themselves out there to try new activities and take positive risks.

  • Thank you to Doug Johnstone and Dan Pontbriand for sharing their fast and fabulous construction skills!
  • Thank you to Jim Shands and Chanda Aldrich for generously giving their time to help with circus prep!
  • Thank you to Jim Beraldi for loaning us the awesome police shirts and hats!
  • Thank you to Ann Brandon for assisting with our costume search!
  • Thank you to Butler Bus Service for donating transportation for our circus troupe


For the first time in four years, TSA’s one-act production was chosen at the regional drama festival this weekend to move on to the state festival which will be held April 7 and 8 at Lamoille Union High School in Hyde Park.  Awarded “Excellence in Acting” were juniors Ella Atkinson, Joseph Campbell, and Cal Hale. The school received special recognition for its “comic timing”.

FIRST Robotics Challenge Team 885 (“The Green Team”) enjoyed a strong showing at the Southern New Hampshire District competition last weekend in Bedford, NH.
  The competition started with a day and a half of qualifying rounds, followed by a half day of elimination rounds. The Green Team was undefeated in their first five qualifying matches and seeded in the number 1 position through the better part of qualifications.  They entered the elimination rounds on the 6th seeded alliance, which made it to the quarterfinals before being eliminated.  Team 885 draws members from several area middle and high schools. TSA’s Taite Clark ’17, Max Farrington ’18, Halsey Jones ’18, Meadow McGalliard ’17, and Carl Groppe IV ’19 contributed greatly to the team this season.



All School News


Parent Support Group Meetings at TSA!  Screens and Teens. Helping support our kids (and each other!) navigate the complicated world of social media and technology. This is an open forum for any parents/guardians interested in joining. Kate will be facilitating the meetings with some guiding questions regarding social media and teen technology usage. The hope is that the ideas, questions, advice and curiosities that you bring will continue to guide the group. Kate says, “I am by no means on expert on this topic, but I would like to create a space where parents can share thoughts and offer support to each other as you navigate the complicated world of raising teens in a digital age.” Please do not feel you have to attend each meeting. Drop-ins are welcome! These evenings will be held at The Sharon Academy High School – 5:30-6:30pm – Moore Hall (The Pit) – Light Refreshments served. Dates:

  • Tuesday, April 11th
  • Tuesday, May 9th

For more information, please contact Kate Sensenich at ksensenich@sharonacademy.net



Phoenix Sports

TSA MS baseball:
1.     We have only 10 players right now and are actively looking for others.
2.    If you know anyone from another school who may be interested, please let them know we would be happy to have them.
3.    We are practicing at the HS but we have a separate MS team.
4.    The Middle School Baseball Team is for boys and girls.
Please contact Matt Robertson at mrobertson@killington.com for more information on our middle school baseball team.

MS Baseball coaching help Needed: Matt Robertson, our middle school baseball coach, is looking for coaching help at games.  Please contact Matt at mrobertson@killington.com, if you are available to assist.

TSA Athletic Gear/Clothing is still available at clearance prices.  Items still available:  t-shirts small to large, a few baseball caps and sweatshirts large and XL.  If you are interested in purchasing any of these items email Kim Knoerlein at: kdk13vt@gmail.com

Officials Recruitment Fair at UVM (Patrick Gymnasium Lobby) on Saturday, April 1, 2017 from 10:00 – 1:00. At this fair, representatives from the various officials associations will be available to talk with people who may be interested in becoming a certified official. It is an informal event where every officials association will have their informational table with representatives present to answer questions. This event is targeting specific groups of people, such as Seniors in high school and staff members who are working in schools. For more information, please see the attached:  Officials Flyer


You can get even more TSA Phoenix Sports News and Pictures on the TSA Athletics Booster Club Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/tsaboosterclub

ef8a28e4-f8f5-4ddd-a7a3-929b56314486You can also check out pictures of Phoenix Sports events at: https://tsaphoenix.shutterfly.com/#
– it does require a Shutterfly Registration – but it is Free!



Middle School News

A Message from TSA’s Head of School, Michael Livingston:  The middle school completed its circus in spectacular fashion on Saturday night. Because of the terrible weather last Friday, the numbers were down a bit.  We counted about 210 people which was frankly better than I thought it might be given the conditions. But, Saturday’s crowd set an all-time record. There were 450 people packed into the gym and all of them had a spectacular time. The middle school did a marvelous job of pulling off the circus despite losing a day and a half because of snow days in week one.  Kudos to the middle school faculty and staff, Troy Wunderle, and the students for doing a remarkable job in that period of time. The energy Saturday night was remarkable! Thank you to everyone at the middle school for all their hard work pulling this off. As Troy Wunderle put it so clearly in his remarks to the circus audience, we are the ONLY school that he works with that is willing to commit two weeks to an activity like this. Two weeks to support the arts. Two weeks to support learning, and failing, and growing, and learning some more.  Two weeks to come together as a community to make real headway as a group and then to be able to give back to the larger community in such a meaningful way. Troy’s work with our faculty and staff on behalf of the students may be the best example of differentiated learning that I’ve ever seen. I couldn’t be more proud of our students and of all of our staff for the incredible ways in which they demonstrate their commitment to their learning.

THANK YOU, Michael Livingston

TSA MS Academic News:

MS Language Arts:  We are continuing our unit on Short Stories by learning about different literary devices such as alliteration, hyperbole and onomatopoeia. We’re also reading famous short stories and discussing them.

MS Science:  This week students were introduced to the Science Fair process which will be the focus for the remainder of the year.  Monday, students will begin working on selecting their topic and developing their scientific question. To read more about the Science Fair please see the attached handouts, which include both the timeline for the project and the criteria sheet:

MS Social Studies: 
Today students finished presenting their independent religion research projects. Next week, we’ll begin our final unit of the year, looking at immigration and refugee issues. Students will have an opportunity to explore how they define “being an American.” We will also resume our weekly current events assignments. The next C.E. due date is Friday 4/7. As part of moving toward a proficiency grading model, current events has a new “criteria sheet” which can be found on Gradelink. Expectations remain the same, but it should now be easier for students to see which specific skills they have mastered and which they need to improve. Please feel free to contact Fallon with any questions at fabel@sharonacademy.net


More TSA Middle School News:

Middle school report cards are now posted on Gradelink. To access your student’s report, log on to Gradelink as usual and click on the PDF icon. Please take the time to go over the report card and the teachers’ comments with your student.  If you have any questions or concerns, please be sure to connect with your student’s advisor. We appreciate being able to post the report cards online both because of the financial savings and the reduced environmental impact.  If you would like a paper copy of the report card, or cannot access Gradelink, please contact Catherine at 763-2531 or cfarrington@sharonacademy.net.

Also, please note that some students have modified grades.  This is indicated in the comment section of the report card.

Thank you for taking the time to thoughtfully review these reports with your student.  Advisors are looking forward to scheduling spring conferences soon and these report cards will be an integral part of that conversation.

MS baseball:

1.     We have only 10 players right now and are actively looking for others.
2.    If you know anyone from another school who may be interested please let them know we are open to students from other schools.
3.    We are practicing at the HS but we have a separate MS team.
4.    The Middle School Baseball Team is for boys and girls.
Please contact Matt Robertson at mrobertson@killington.com for more information on our middle school baseball team.

MS Baseball coaching help Needed: Matt Robertson, our middle school baseball coach, is looking for coaching help at games.  Please contact Matt at mrobertson@killington.com, if you are available to assist.

MS Track will start next week: Schedule to be announced but likely Tuesday, April 4th,  to start.


Found at the Circus:  Child’s winter jacket, size 3, dark pink.  Please contact Catherine Farrington, cfarrington@sharonacademy.net


High School News

Fun fact!  As of Friday, April 31st, there are <4 in-school weeks until Senior Exhibition Presentation day.  Seniors were informed of some important dates to keep in mind relative to their progress in assembling and completing their Exhibitions. The project is a time-sensitive process and a graduation requirement.  What follows is a list of “Last Chance” dates for completing the elements of the project in a way to qualify you for on time graduation (separate from other requirements, like Community Service, for example.) –

Senior Exhibition Timeline Distributed to Students this Week


Congratulations cast and crew of the TSA One Act Play!  For the first time in four years, TSA’s one-act production was chosen at the regional drama festival this weekend to move on to the state festival. The Cast: Meg Shirley, Kian Kaufman, Alex Olszewski, Tommi Hoyt, Lydia Bennett, Claire Jenisch, Gabriella Atkinson, Rory Livingston, Fisher Kelley, Cal Hale, Joseph Campbell, Hailey Swett, Laila Reimanis, Olly Skeet-Browning. Director: Trabyn Fisk; Lights & Sound: Emma Sawyer; Mentor: Charlie McMeekin

They performed “Cut” by Ed Monk at Springfield Union High School on Saturday, March 25th.  By consent of the director/members of the Vermont Drama Council, the continuing schools are not named at the festival, as the emphasis of the festival is really on creating a community of young people who enjoy the arts. It has become a TSA practice to find somewhere on the way home to open “the envelope” and discover our fate”, shares Charlie McMeekin, advisor to the program. This year they stopped at the Hartland UCC church, which had been opened up by parents. They sat and shared observations about each of the six plays, and then. . . opened the envelope. Charlie got to read the first name printed (not listed in specific order) and it was the Long Trail School. Being a fast reader, he had spied the second name as well, but passed the envelope to Tray, the show’s director. Lots of stress in that room!!” Tray’s face melted, he said TSA, and the room went crazy with screams, jumping adolescents, hugs galore, laughter, and many tears of joy.

Chaperone Jared Jenisch witnessed the spectacle, and was “thankful’ for the opportunity. “Victory always feels better than its opposite, and it felt very good to have our work affirmed. But every bit as important were the friendships and connections I saw made during the day, both between various members of our 15 person team, and with other schools, most notably Long Trail and Springfield, but certainly also including Thetford and South Burlington. We definitely helped make this festival a celebration, and that matters to me.”

Awarded “Excellence in Acting” were juniors Ella Atkinson, Joseph Campbell, and Cal Hale. The school received special recognition for its “comic timing”. 


The Overnight Challenge (The OC) for TSA 10th Graders – dealing with change, adversity, and risk: 
May 4th and 5th. The Sharon Academy firmly believes that respectfully pushing students out of their comfort zone enables them to discover strengths that they might not otherwise know they had and to admire the strengths of their classmates. Our goal is that this experience will increase their confidence in themselves and their understanding of each other. Recognizing that the 10th grade year is an “in between” year (coming after the excitement of the first year of high school and preceding the unique challenges of our junior year) we are offering an overnight, experiential “off‐campus” program to help create a sense of purpose, community, adventure and ultimately to give 10th graders something special that makes their year stand out among others. For more information, see this memo to parents of 10th Graders:
OC Memo
Or please contact Tom Canfield at tcanfield@sharonacademy.net


Summer Camp Job Opportunity at Horizons Day Camp on Lake Fairlee for High School Students as camp counselors. Do you enjoy working with children, want to be part of a fun community on a beautiful lake, and love to be outside and active all summer? Horizons has a few positions open for Assistant Counselors (9th and 10th grade) and Lead Counselors (11th, 12th, and beyond). For more information, talk to TSA students who have and will work at Horizons:  Mallory Lloyd ’17 and Caleb Eastman ’18. Or to apply go to https://alohafoundation.org/horizons/ or call Tracey McFadden at 765-4496

Apply to the ACLU’s Summer Advocacy Institute!
The ACLU is now accepting applications for a week long advocacy training and leadership development seminar at Georgetown University in Washington, D.C., from July 29 – August 5, 2017. The ACLU Summer Advocacy Institute will bring together a diverse group of high school juniors and seniors from across the United States to participate in an advanced, firsthand learning experience for the next generation of social justice advocates. Through an intensive eight-day program, students will learn directly from lawyers, lobbyists, community activists, and other experts working to defend the civil rights and liberties critical to a free and open society. Speakers include: EDWARD SNOWDEN, CRISTINA JIMENEZ, ANTHONY ROMERO.  Applications are due by Friday, April 7, and scholarships are available! For any questions or to request a code to waive the application fee, please contact summerinstitute@aclu.org



Scholarship and College Info

The Central Vermont College Fair is being hosted at Vermont Tech on Tuesday, April 4 from  9:30 AM – 11:30 AM in the SHAPE gymnasium. Over 80 colleges and Universities from across the country will be represented. Students should notify their teachers AND Cynthia if they plan to be absent from school to attend this college fair.  


College Information Session for Students with  Disabilities on Wednesday, April 12th at 6:30pm.  Hanover High School will be hosting an event for students with disabilities and their parents to learn about navigating the college process and accessing support services once a student has been admitted to college. This session will be most valuable for students in their junior and senior years.  Since college students are required to advocate for themselves, students are highly encouraged to attend. For more information, please contact Ellen Bagnato at ebagnato@sharonacademy.net


Canadian College Fair April 4 at Hanover High School; Event times: 6:30 – 8:30 pm. Canadian Colleges will be visiting HHS for a college fair. The first 20 minutes of the evening fair will involve a panel of representatives who will briefly describe the Canadian University experience.  Following the panel, families will have the opportunity to speak directly to the representatives from the Canadian schools who will be set up at individual tables in the atrium.

Bishop’s University
Stefanie Mclean
Carleton University
Concordia University
Dalhousie University
McMaster University
Mt. Allison University
Ryerson University
St. Mary’s University
St. Thomas University
University of Guelph
University of New Brunswick
University of Ottawa
University of Prince Edward Island
University of Waterloo

For more information, please contact Ellen Bagnato at ebagnato@sharonacademy.net

Free College Planning With VSAC.
 High school juniors, sophomores & parents — Attend College Pathways 2017 for free college planning workshops that cover the admissions process, where to find money for college, how to find a school that matches your needs and budget, and more. Choose from three dates on three different Vermont college campuses. It’s all free.
April 1 at Castleton University, Castleton, 9:00am – 12:30pm
April 29 at Johnson State College, Johnson, 9:00am – 12:30pm
For more information, please contact Ellen Bagnato at ebagnato@sharonacademy.net or visit http://www.vsac.org/college- pathways

Explore College and Career Options with Vermont Tech. Vermont Tech has a number of upcoming events for sophomores, juniors and seniors to check out all they offer:
VAST Info Session at Randolph                   March 14
VAST Info Session at Williston                    March 15
Explore Engineering Technology Night     March 16
Randolph Campus Spring Open House     April 22
Williston Campus Spring Open House      April 29
Randolph Try a Major Day                           May 5

For more information, please contact Ellen Bagnato at ebagnato@sharonacademy.net or visit http://www.vtc.edu/admissions-aid/tours-events


Sharon Masonic Lodge Scholarship:  For over a decade, the members of Sharon Lodge #105, Free and Accepted Masons of the State of Vermont, have presented two scholarships toward further education to graduating high school seniors, residing in the Town of Sharon, Vermont. A recent change in the award criteria will also include relatives of members of Sharon Lodge #105, in good standing regardless of their place of residence.  The scholarship winners should exemplify the qualities of good moral character, leadership, community service, patriotism and versatility, while still maintaining an average or above average scholastic performance level. The award winners are determined on the information obtained through the application process.  Scholarships in the amount of $500 will be given to the award winners AFTER they have competed their first term or semester and have indicated continuation of their college or technical program. Applications can be obtained from Ellen Bagnato. Application deadline is May 1, 2017. For more information, please contact Ellen Bagnato at ebagnato@sharonacademy.net


Alumni News

TSA Alumna’s Relay for Life Fundraising – Beth Potter, Class of 2013, is currently in her last year at UVM. This is her fourth year participating in the event, and she would like to make it her best in terms of fundraising! In 2015, Relay raised $150 million for research grants, helped provide 316,000 rides to and from treatments, and provided 361,000 nights of free lodging at Hope Lodges across the country. Please consider donating (all you have to do is follow the link included– the event is April 7th) and help in the fight against cancer! For more information, please contact Beth Potter at egpotter@uvm.edu or visit http://main.acsevents.org/site/TR/?fr_id=81005&pg=personal&px=35592496

2017 Alumni Events Calendar

Wednesday, April 26th at 7:00pm – TSA Alumni Wing Night at 5 Olde in South Royalton.  Hosted by TSA Alumn Zach Nugent. Join us for some reminiscing and chicken parts. Significant others are welcome! Check out the facebook page for the event here: https://www.facebook.com/events/1242928739121020/

Saturday, April 29th – TSA’s 20th Birthday Party Gala. All alumni are welcome to come celebrate with us. Enjoy dancing to The Party Crashers, great food, cash bar and a lively auction

Sunday, April 30th – Alumni Brunch at ML’s. All alumni are welcome to come enjoy some bagels and fun with Michael Livingston at his house.  Check out the facebook page for the event here: https://www.facebook.com/events/765025130321552/

Thursday, May 25th – Alumni Day. Share your experiences and your wisdom about life after TSA with current students. Meet with faculty to share suggestions/feedback about TSA.


Community Service

Seven Stars Arts Center Internship:  Interested in nonprofit management? Publicity and social media management? Graphic design? Be an intern at Seven Stars Arts Center and gain community service hours for your school requirement.  Join the SSAC team and help create a vibrant arts community for all in the Upper Valley.  To inquire, email Lindsey: president@sevenstarsarts.org

For more information, please contact Lindsey Warren at president@sevenstarsarts.org


Community Events

Wine Tasting Fundraiser to Benefit 2017 US Japan Career and Cultural Study Program, Thursday, April 27th; 5:30pm to 7:30pm. The US Japan Culture and Career Study Program is hosting an adults only wine tasting and silent auction fundraiser. The wine is provided by Artisan Cellars and Scavenger Gallery Wines, and auction items come from Vermont and Japan. Along with this, there will be appetizers, raffles, and music by Mike Parker. All funds raised will go towards the US Japan Culture and Career Study Program. The event is at Briggs Opera House and tickets will be available at the door for $20. For more information, please contact Bob Clavelle at clavelleb@gmail.com


Bethel University is pleased to be able to sponsor a discussion with Rutland’s former mayor, Chris Louras.  This event, entitled “Refugees – An Economic Imperative, a Humanitarian Response”, is free and open to the public.  It will consist of a short background video and then an open forum with the ex-Mayor.  Vermont’s need for a population infusion, its history of welcoming immigrants and its policy differences with the current Administration are all likely to be included in the discussion, and are probably good fodder for current events and government class discussions.  Bethel University welcomes participation by The Sharon Academy community in this and all of our events. Sign-up can be found here: https://www.eventbrite.com/myevent?eid=31733698346

Healing through the Arts Day on April 9th from 2-5pm at Seven Stars Arts Center in Sharon, VT. SafeArt will present its Clothesline Art Exhibit, curated by Mitch Beck, along with a reception. SafeArt founder Tracey Penfield will hold a signing and read from her new book “A Curriculum of Courage: Making SafeArt” at 3pm. The Arts Bus’ new executive director, Sharon Trautwein, will lead poetry and art projects for all.  Seven Stars president Lindsey Warren will lead a song learning session at 4pm for “Quiet,” a song that became popular at the Women’s March. This song is about finding strength and speaking out to create healing through harmony.  All genders and ages are welcome to attend.  The community is invited honor April as poetry and violence awareness month through creativity, community, and healing with art.   Suggested donation $5.  More information at www.sevenstarsarts.org
Or see the event flyer here:   Healing Through the Arts Flyer

Revels North March 2017 Happenings:

April 8 – Revels Traditions & Community Dance
May 13 & 14 – Christmas Revels Auditions
May 15 – First Rehearsal for Summer Revels
May 20 & 21 – Pancake Breakfast
For more details on these events, please visit:  http://revelsnorth.org/

ArtisTree in Pomfret is a non-profit committed to making creative expression and its appreciation accessible to our community.  They have many wonderful programs coming up during April Vacation.  Check them out at: http://www.artistreevt.org/



Four bedroom, two bathroom house for sale in Sharon.  This is a beautifully maintained and upgraded, antique Colonial,  with all new windows, plumbing, and electrical. Located in central Sharon –  just a quick walk to the elementary school or the local swimming hole. For more information, please contact  at  or visit http://www.estately.com/listings/info/4866-vermont-route-14