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students performing a song in front of classmates
students showing off a project
student building a model house
marching band and football team
teacher helping student
student sanding a project
mural at barre city school

 

Latest News & Events

BC Students Interview Chief Vail

As many of you know, young students in the BUUSD are very fortunate to have the opportunity to build positive relationships with our local police officers.  This week, new Barre City Chief of Police Braedon Vail joined BCEMS Special Educator Allison Courtemanche for a Q & A with a group of 7th and 8th graders on the PEAK team.  It was an informative and enlightening experience for all! 

Gymnastics at BTMES

For this week's showcase, you are in for a real treat!  I got to spend this morning with BTMES Physical Education teacher Laura Thygesen's 2nd graders, and you will be mighty impressed with what you see here.  Mrs. Thygesen has put together an impressive gymnastics unit that really encourages these students of varying skills and abilities to challenge themselves and move their bodies in healthy ways!  Every student was engaged, highly physically active, and having fun!  This was their first class of the day - what a terrific start to a full day of learning. 

BUILD Design Challenge at BCEMS

Happy New Year!  Our first School Showcase of 2023 brings us to Barre City Elementary and Middle School and 5th Grade teacher Jody Leone's WIN group.  Ms. Leone's 5th graders participated in a BUILD Design Challenge in December, and their work resulted in a $500 award for their classroom! 

Learning Portrait Photography at SHS

I got to visit SHS Art Teacher Brendan Eaton's Digital Photography class yesterday, and we were able to hear all about some of the studio portraits his students have been working on in recent weeks. These juniors and seniors are combining use of the latest digital technology along with their own artistic skills to create some truly beautiful pieces. Mr. Eaton has allowed for a very collaborative and creative artistic community in his classroom with these students, and I was grateful to be able to share in their work.

Hour of Code

For those who don't know, last week was "Computer Science Education Week", and all of our schools are participating in the nationwide Hour of Code event this month!  We got to spend time with all three of our district's Technology Integrationists the last three days as they collaborated with their colleagues to bring basic coding skills into the classroom.  First, BTMES's Jess Van Orman joined band teacher Ally Tarwater and her 6th graders coding "Edison" robots to play their musical pieces.  We then joined SHS's Angelique Fairbrother at the SEA program to hear how she is teaching their students to use Minecraft with their history lessons.  Finally, we joined BCEMS's Mike Martin in the 4th grade classes of Roberta Melnick and Charlotte Murphy to learn how to move Angry Birds through a maze.

After School Art Club

We joined BCEMS Art Teacher Eirene Mavodones and Barre City parent and artist Amber Charbonneau in their weekly after school Art Club with a group of 8th graders.  At the height of the pandemic, Ms. Mavodones was concerned that too many of our students were missing out on opportunities to socialize and connect with their friends in shared interests.  So, she and Amber did something about it!  The BCEMS Art Club has been a joy for students on Friday afternoons for nearly two years now, and you can hear the experiences of some of our 8th graders.

JROTC Instructor and Cadets

For this week's showcase, we joined SHS J.R.O.T.C. Teacher Sgt. Danny Boone and his cadets.  This showcase really speaks for itself, but I want to recognize SHS Senior Ian Longfellow who has just found out that he has been nominated by Senator Leahy for an appointment to attend the United States Military Academy at West Point.

The Gallery at Barre Town

We welcome you to The Gallery at Barre Town Middle and Elementary School!  BTMES Art Teacher Anne Leeds and Design Lab Teacher Michael Pope have worked with students across the elementary and middle schools to create a peaceful place in their community that has had a positive impact on everyone at Barre Town for many years.  Please take a look at what the two of them and some of their students have to say about The Gallery.

group of people on a football field

We didn't want to wait until next week to celebrate the start of the fall SHS playoff season, because it will already be underway as you read this!   Our Crimson Tide teams have had an exciting fall season, and the playoff rounds are beginning this afternoon with our girls' soccer team playing Enosburg at the Barre Town Rec Field.  SHS Athletic Director Derek Cipriano and I had a chance to catch up with all of the team captains and some of their teammates this afternoon, and they shared some highlights of their season and what we can look forward to in the days and weeks ahead.

student winning a game

I was able to join BCEMS Social Studies teacher Missy Wiggins' 7th graders last week for a fun lesson in her Ancient Civilization class.  "Student Engagement'' is a key objective of our Strategic Plan, and it was great to see the kids using technology and engage in collaborative teamwork in their learning.  Most of us will remember learning long vocabulary lists when we were students, but what you will see here is a perfect example of a traditional lesson made better with simple but creative and engaging methods.  Ms. Wiggins made a vocabulary lesson come alive with an engaging and fun experience for her students, and the kids were all eager to share their work with us! 

student and teacher talking

This week's Showcase brings us for a return visit to the SEA Program!  "SEA" stands for Spaulding Educational Alternatives, and the program is in the middle of its second year in our new location.  Located on Allen Street in Barre City, SEA provides an alternative opportunity to access high school for up to 60 of our students, and the program is off to an impressive and successful start.  We met with SEA teachers Stephen Kelley and Cliff Thompson along with some of their students yesterday in East Montpelier with the Vermont Youth Conservation Corp, and it was a great visit.

girls playing soccer

Last night, the BTMES and BCEMS middle school boys and girls soccer teams combined for a spirited game under the lights at Pendo Field on the Spaulding campus.  It was a lot of fun for all the athletes and the big audience that came to cheer them on!  BUUSD Athletic Directors Jodi Bushway (BCEMS), Jack Carrier (BTMES), and Derek Cipriano (SHS) joined forces with the BYSA to put on this event.  Any opportunity to bring our school communities together is always welcome, and I want to thank all who made this event possible!  What an incredibly fun way to spend a Wednesday night!

teacher and students in classroom

Earlier today, I visited BTMES 4th grade ELA teacher Mackenzie Rice's classroom.  Miss Rice is a 2022 graduate of St. Michael's College, and this is her first teaching position.  I have observed and visited many classrooms over the last 30 plus years, and you would never know that this person is so new to teaching after spending time with her and these 4th graders!

group photo of students in front of brick building

A group of about 40 SHS Juniors and Seniors had a great experience attending the Fall College Fair at St. Michael's College yesterday!  SHS Work Based Learning Coordinator Michelle LaFrancis leads this trip annually, and according to Michelle, "WBL programming provides opportunities for students to participate in a series of college visits to determine where they can get the education, experience, and training needed to meet their professional goals while experiencing various college campuses."  This was an exciting eye opener for our students! 

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