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News About WOCSD
On November 7th, seven veterans and two active duty service members were honored for their service to our country in what has become an annual tradition at Wells Elementary School, an assembly to honor veterans while teaching students the importance of Veterans Day. Six of the veterans were from VFW Post 6977 in York.
After the Pledge of Allegiance, 3rd grade student Riley Nichols sang the “Star Spangled Banner”. The WHS Band played patriotic songs and the WHS Color Guard performed synchronized flag routines. “The children love this,” commented Assistant Principal Ken Spinney about the added presence of the band and color guard. “It's great because our students look up to the older students and have the opportunity to see what they have to look forward to if they participate in band or color guard.”
At one point, each of the special nine guests were honored with a certificate of appreciation from the school presented to each by an individual student.
“A group of fourth graders spoke about the branches of the military and how their work relates to the freedoms we have, as well as, our district core values of respect, responsibility, honesty, compassion, and trustworthiness,” commented Spinney about a portion of the assembly.
In the days leading up to this show of support for veterans, students and staff collected candy to be sent by the York VFW to those still serving in Afghanistan and Qatar.
An Army paratrooper in World War II and Vice Commander of VFW Post 6997, John Primerano Jr., spoke about what freedom means to him and the important meaning of Veterans Day.
Active military members and parents of students at WES Jeff Trudeau and Shane Maxon plus Navy veteran Dale Lear, father of WES fourth grade teacher Pam Lear attended this assembly.
Caption: Veterans from VFW Post 6977 in York who attended an assembly honoring veterans at WES on November 7th. From left to right are: Edward Benoit (Air Force), John Primerano (Army), Melvyn Bates (Army), Larry Wicker (Air Force), Charles Andrews (Navy), and Raymond Farnham (Army).
Wells High School senior Christopher Carney has been selected Athlete of the Month for September 2014. This award is in recognition of Carney’s academics, sportsmanship, and participation on the WHS Warriors Football Team as running back and linebacker on defense.
Presenting Carney with an Athlete of the Month plaque at WHS on October 30th was WHS Athletics Director Jack Molloy along with John C. Kreie of Cole Harrison Insurance Agency and Pamela Moody-Maxon of Moody Maxon Real Estate. Cole Harrison Insurance Agency and Moody Maxon Real Estate are sponsors of Athlete of the Month at WHS.
“Chris has worked very hard over the past few years and is very deserving of this award,” commented Kreie. “The time he spends on the practice field and the weight room bettering himself and his athletic ability is clearly paying off. Chris is not only a phenomenal athlete, but more importantly, a great kid who is very well respected amongst his peers and adults in our community as well as opponents.”
“It feels great to get this award,” said a modest Carney, who eagerly gives much credit for his award to his teammates. “I feel as if the whole team should get this award.”
Athletes picked to receive Athlete of the Month are selected by WHS’s Activities Director Jack Molloy and Principal Jim Daly.
After high school, Carney indicated that he would like to study for a career in law enforcement.
“He’s been my role model and hopefully I can fill his shoes,” said Carney about his father, who has been a police officer in Kennebunk for about 18 years.
Caption: From left to right is John Kreie, Jack Molloy, Chris Carney, and Pam Moody-Maxon standing on Warrior Memorial Field.
The music program at Wells Junior High School is holding a ‘Mattress Fundraising Sale’ November 22nd from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. This event is to raise money to cover expenses to send the Wells Junior High School Choruses to two music festivals in the spring of 2015.
For one day, the Ward Gymnasium will be turned into a large mattress showroom displaying over 20 styles of new mattress sets including Simmons Beauty Rest. Featured will be memory foam and latex mattresses marked down 30 to 60 percent off retail prices. There will also be sales representatives available to answer questions.
According to WJHS Music teacher Katie Mercier, the goal of this ‘no pressure’ sale is to raise $5,000 to help the 7th and 8th grade choruses attend the Six Flags Music Festival in Agawam Massachusetts, t-shirts, and admission for all attending singers to visit Six Flags New England. In addition, money raised from the mattress sale will similarly help send 5th and 6th grade choruses to the Funtown Music Festival in May.
If you need a new mattress for your home, camp or just for a better night’s sleep, please consider attending this sales event. For more information, please call WJHS at (207)646-5142.
Each fall, the Parent Teacher Student Association (PTSA) at Wells Elementary School sponsors a ‘Bus Driver Appreciation Week’ to acknowledge and thank those who have the responsibility of safely delivering students to and from school.
Bus Driver Appreciation Week occurred at WES from October 20th thru the 24th. On the 20th during their morning run, drivers were greeted with a large ‘thank you’ sign placed prominently on the lawn of WES. Drivers were treated to a morning snack including coffee and bagels. At student dismissal time, kindergarteners presented handmade ‘thank you’ cards to their drivers. Over the next four days, 1st through 4th grade students followed suit with their own cards.
The week wrapped up with more food delivered to the drivers’ lunch and break area at Ledgemere Transportation Inc.’s bus terminal in Wells. Presented at that time was a specially made cake plus gifts. Bus Driver Appreciation Week at WES was coordinated by PTSA members Denise Knobloch and Sarah Koh.
On November 4th, the Parent Teacher Organization (PTO) and the Student Council at Wells Junior High School recognized their school’s bus drivers with coffee, muffins, bagels, scones, apples and juice delivered to the drivers at Ledgemere in Wells.
“The students here love their bus drivers,” said Librarian and Student Council co-advisor Lynn Mercier. “They speak very favorably of their bus drivers.” Mercier and co-advisor Cindy Mitchell work with the PTO to put on this annual early morning lunch as a show of appreciation.
According to Terminal Manager Lauren Clark, Ledgemere currently has 16 drivers who transport 850 students to and from school in Wells and Ogunquit each school day.
Clark indicated that Bus Driver Appreciation Week at WES coincided with National School Bus Safety Week. To brush up on safety, drivers reminded student passengers of safety rules and conducted bus evacuation drills with them during the week of October 20th.
Clark wants to remind all drivers that bus safety is dangerously compromised when drivers fail to come to a complete stop for school busses that have stopped to pick up or drop off students.
“We see it daily,” said Clark, who estimates that six to seven cars illegally go through bus lights each day even though these buses have clearly stopped for passengers with lights flashing and stop signs extended. Clark indicated that “it is critical” for drivers to stop and not attempt to pass a stopped school bus when they see those familiar warning indicators on school busses.
Clark indicated that Ledgemere’s parent company is Student Transportation of America. Locally, Ledgemere also transports students in Sanford, Kittery, Berwick, York, Kezar Falls and Portsmouth, New Hampshire.
Caption: Ledgemere bus drivers in Wells: Top row sitting in the bus are (l-r) Jean LaRiviere, Christine Towne, Tabitha Bergeron, and Richard Bissell. Standing outside of the bus (l to r) are Lauren Clark, Rochelle Greenwood, Bill Cochran, Joe Nugent, Dan Hungerford, John Harris, Tammy Bissell, and Debbie Carmel.
Wells High School hosted its first “Breakfast of Champions” for the current school year on Friday, October 31st. Twelve students and ten staff members were invited to attend the 7:00 a.m. event.
Invitees gathered before the start of school in the library to be recognized for their contributions to the learning and social environments of WHS. Activities Director Jack Molloy and teacher Jay Moore presented each with a certificate and red lettered t-shirt.
“It’s our way of giving back; saying thank you for doing great deeds,” said Principal Daly. “We have great kids, we have staff members that are dedicated and the reason why our high school is doing so well is because of the folks that are in it. I appreciate everything that they’re doing.”
Breakfast of Champions was instituted at Wells High School in 2007 by Principal Daly. Each of these events is organized by him and Mrs. Lil Lagasse.
To be honored at this breakfast one has to be nominated by a coach, teacher or staff member. There are three of these breakfast events held each school year.
Photo caption: In in alphabetical order are those recently recognized as ‘Champions’ by Wells High School: Liam Bell, Abigail Bourque, Grace Box, Joey Chaplin, Jonathan Clarrage, Ms. Noël Curcio, Mr. Brad Goodale, Mrs. Lil Lagasse, Alyssa Loukola, Mrs. Tari Matthews, Seamus McDonough, Brian McMahon, Marisa Mizzoni, Mr. Jay Moore, Lindsey Myers, Mrs. Cheryl Oakes, Mrs. Karen Quint, Officer John Riegel, Gabe Rider, Mrs. Cindy Roche, Brooke Verge, and Mrs. Terre Webster.
Wells Junior High School students and staff will present their 20th Annual Turkey Dinner for area seniors on November 16th from 11:00 am to 1:00 pm. The dinner will be turkey with all the fixings plus coffee and dessert. This popular event is not only a gesture of goodwill offered to the community by the school but a ‘service learning’ project for all eighth grade students. For more information, please call WJHS at 646-5142.
Caption: A scene form the 19th Annual WJHS Thanksgiving Dinner in 2013
‘Farm to School’ celebrates 10th anniversary, student participation in local harvest reaches 5th year
The 10th Annual ‘Farm to School Week’, was observed in the cafeterias of the Wells-Ogunquit CSD from September 22nd through the 26th. All through the week during lunchtime students were served a large variety of locally grown fresh fruit, vegetables and beef.
Farm to School Week was introduced to the District in 2005 by Nutritional Services Director Tyler Goodwin. It reinforces eating more nutritious food and highlights the ‘farm to school’ trend of mixing locally grown food into school lunch menus thereby lessening reliance on less nutritious, sodium-rich processed food. Currently, the District purchases locally grown food from Chase Farm, Spiller Farm and Maine Family Farms.
What makes the WOCSD participation in this Farm to School movement stand out among other Southern Maine schools is that Wells and Ogunquit students voluntarily help with the harvest during and after school hours thereby cutting costs and giving them experience laboring on an actual working farm. Each year Spiller Farm in Wells plants several acres of vegetables exclusively for WOCSD.
On several occasions in September and early October seventh grade and fourth grade students traveled by bus to the fields of Spiller Farm and Laudholm Farm to pick potatoes, green beans, carrots and apples. Corn on the cob comes to the District from Chase Farm but is not harvested by students. However, the corn is shucked by the fifth grade class.
According to Goodwin, 900 lbs. of potatoes, 500 lbs. of carrots and 400 lbs. of green beans were picked this year. But that is not where the work ended. For example, green beans and carrots are snipped, cut, washed, steamed, boxed and frozen back at WJHS.
Science teacher Saul Lindauer’s students participate in the harvest but also study aspects of the harvest in the classroom including an examination of sustainable food sources and practices in Maine. He says that his students “conduct a variety of math and science related investigations connected to the food harvesting.”
The cooperation between Anna and Bill Spiller of Spiller Farm with the WOCSD is in its fifth year. “I think it’s good to give kids an idea of where their food really comes from,” said Bill Spiller who added, “It doesn’t (just) come off the shelf at Hannaford.”
Often the harvesting and processing of these foods was quite fast. “These carrots will go from the field…and will be in the freezer within 24 hours, processed, steamed and ready to go,” said Nutritional Director Tyler Goodwin on October 14th when the carrots were being picked on Spiller Farm.
Goodwin said that buying locally is not always the less expensive alternative. “Spillers give us a competitive price. It’s not as much about saving money as about getting farm fresh foods into our lunch program and keeping our school lunch dollars local.” commented Goodwin who wishes to thank Spiller Farm, WJHS Principal Chris Chessie, WJHS teacher Brenda Brown, WES Principal Marianne Horne, WES Assistant Principal Ken Spinney, and WES Science teacher Henry Ingwersen for their support of Farm to School Week. Goodwin also wishes to thank the students for their work in the harvest.
Caption: WOCSD students picking potatoes at Laudholm Farm.
Caption: Cutting and peeling carrots at WJHS are (l to r) students Kim Yurga, Gwen Wallingford, Sarah Lord, Sydney Perry and Abigail Legere and Darion Frasier
Caption: Harvesting carrots on Spiller Farm are McKaela Schiller (left) and Lily Heyland.
Caption: WJHS student Caroling Clarrage holding a very large carrot with student Jillian Evans at right.
Caption: Bill Spiller (left) and Saul Lindauer at Spiller Farm in Wells on October 14th.
In an assembly at Wells Elementary School on October 8th, representatives from the Wells Beach Hose Company, as part of their new Carbon Monoxide Program and in observance of Fire Prevention Week, donated 354 carbon monoxide detectors to students so that every family of a WES student could have a carbon monoxide detector in their home.
Even though their fire station on Webhannet Drive in Wells is now closed, the Wells Beach Hose Company (WBHC) continues to be a not for profit organization for those (and their spouses) who used to volunteer at the former fire house until its closure in 1989 when WBHC had 60 members.
According to WES Assistant Principal Ken Spinney, the organization reached out to the school to initiate the distribution of these detectors worth $13,000. Money for this significant donation was raised through fireman musters, fireman’s balls, and “Beano” (WBHC’s version of Bingo).
“I think it is just another neat example of community support of education of our students,” said an appreciative Spinney who labeled this gift a “great gesture”. Spinney said that one of these detectors might someday help save the life of a child and their family.
Current President and former Fire Chief at the WBHC Reggie Chase plus Pam Moody-Maxon and Judy Moody attended. Moody, whose husband is a WBHC member, coordinated the distribution of the detectors with assistance from members of the Wells High School INTERACT Club, a junior version of Wells Rotary. These high school students sorted, counted and distributed the carbon monoxide detectors to classroom teachers.
Moody and Maxon each spoke during the assembly. Moody explained what carbon monoxide is and set off one of the detectors to familiarize students with the sound of the alarm. She also answered student questions.
Maxon, who has two brothers that are WBHC members, spoke of the history of the Wells Beach Hose Company. Her father Peter Moody served for 27 years as a paid firefighter, 63 years as an active member and, for 5 years, as Fire Chief at the now closed station. Maxon told the audience that she "grew up" at the fire station. As a child she would spend lots of time staying at the station with her dad who worked 24 hour per day shifts. She said that she liked to play on the fire truck and would sometimes fall asleep on the truck’s hoses. The students at the assembly loved this story.
A booklet compiled by Pam Maxon and Judy Moody consisting of copies of old photographs of Peter Moody was given to teachers for their students to view. In the booklet were images of the old fire station and the fire trucks and ambulances it housed over the decades.
Carbon Monoxide is an odorless, tasteless and invisible gas. According to the U.S. Centers For Disease Control (CDC), unintentional carbon monoxide poisoning accounted for an average of 430 deaths each year during the period from 1999 to 2010.
Caption: First grade teacher Lynn McPherson (at right) receiving a bag of carbon monoxide detectors from WHS INTERACT member Anna Furness.
At its October 1st meeting the WOCSD School Committee recognized several individuals for a variety of service to the Wells-Ogunquit CSD.
Outgoing School Committee member Cory Thyng was recognized by Committee Chair Helena Ackerson for his service to the WOCSD School Committee. Thyng, who was not able to attend the presentation, will receive his plaque that reads, “In recognition and appreciation of your service as a member of the WOCSD School Committee 2012-2014.
A group of six volunteers were recognized for maintaining the flower and shrub garden in front of Wells Junior High School. In alphabetical order, they are Rita Coulton, Kathy Graham, Sally Morse, Bonnie Quint, Louretta Russell, and Julie Stevens.
Accepting a certificate from Superintendent Ellen Schneider and School Committee Chair Ackerson on behalf of their group were Morse, Russell and Graham. The plaque reads, “In recognition of your continual beautification to the grounds of Wells Junior High School”.
Also recognized was WOCSD Director of Technology Michael Richards for his stewardship of the WOCSD website, www.k12wocsd.net. His certificate reads, “for your unending upgrades and updates to the District’s website”.
Caption: From left to right are Superintendent Ellen Schneider, Kathy Graham, Louretta Russell, Sally Morse, and School Committee Chair Helena Ackerson.
Caption: Presenting WOCSD Director of Technology Michael Richards with a certificate of recognition for his service is Superintendent Ellen Schneider (left) and School Committee Chair Helena Ackerson.
Wells-Ogunquit C.S.D. officials, teachers, students, the WHS Band and various Wells and Ogunquit town officials assembled at noon on Friday, September 26th at Wells High School for a ground breaking ceremony to commemorate the start of the project to renovate and expand Wells High School. As construction trucks rolled in and out of the school’s driveway, WOCSD Superintendent Ellen Schneider and seven other guest speakers spoke briefly to the audience just outside of the construction site. The two-year, $26.85 million project was approved by Wells-Ogunquit voters last November. The general contractor for the project is Arthur C. Dudley, Inc.
From left to right with shovels in hand are WHS teacher Steve Kayser, Building Committee Co-Chair Zak Harding, Wells Town Manager Jon Carter, WOCSD Superintendent Ellen Schneider, WHS student Ally O’Brien, School Committee Chair Helena Ackerson, State Senator Ron Collins, Building Committee Co-Chair Josh Gould, and WHS Principal Jim Daly.
Speaking at the ground breaking ceremony at Wells High School on Friday is WOCSD Superintendent Ellen Schneider. Seated from left to right is Wells Town Manager Jon Carter, Building Committee Co-Chair Zak Harding, Building Committee Co-Chair Josh Gould, School Committee Chair Helena Ackerson, State Senator Ron Collins, WHS student Ally O’Brien, WHS teacher Steve Kayser, and WHS Principal Jim Daly.