Greenwich Schools Administrators to Retire

A roundup of news in Greenwich Public Schools.

Taking well-deserved extended vacations

Last week came the news of not one, but three GPS administrators announcing their retirements come the conclusion of the 2011-2012 school year:

  • Truxton (Tuck) Southworth - Program Coordinator for Mathematics and Technology Education;
  • Linda Woods - Program Coordinator for Guidance;
  • Colleen Morey - Program Coordinator for Physical Education, Health and Family & Consumer Science

Southworth, an educator for 40 years, 27 of which were with the Greenwich Public Schools, started as a teacher leader in 1985 at then Eastern Junior High School. He was an assistant principal at Julian Curtiss School before taking on a series of program coordinator roles for the district involving Math, Science and Technology. During this period, he led K-12 curriculum reviews of both math and science and was a strong supporter of interdisciplinary learning. 

Morey joined the district in 1993 as a program coordinator and soon took on added responsibility for social-emotional learning programs, the middle school interscholastic program and intramurals for the middle and high schools. Her retirement announcement cited her passion for service learning most notably her efforts to establish and lead fund-raising programs for the Hogares Luz Y Vida Orphanage in Bogota, Columbia. Morey received the 2002 Program Excellence Award for Quality Program Development from Project Adventure International, one of only eight international recipients. 

Woods, also a 40-year educator, began her career as a special education teacher before taking on a series of administrative positions at school districts in Pennsylvania and Connecticut. She came to Greenwich in 2004. She was noted for developing a collaborative work environment for her guidance staff and for introducing electronic tools to the district such as Naviance, a post secondary school planning tool used by parents and an electronic platform to support Student Success Plans which assists in tracking progress on academic goals, career planning and personal/social development. She also led the effort to annually hold one of the largest college fairs in the area at GHS.

“See the World Through Different Eyes”- GHS Diversity Week   

“We, the students and staff of , promise to build a community that promotes mutual respect. We will celebrate our differences and not let them divide us. We will work to understand, educate and listen to each other."

The GHS Diversity pledge is especially relevant during the annual Diversity Awareness Week being from Tuesday, Feb. 7 through Friday, Feb. 10 at the high school.

Throughout the week, a series of presentations, demonstrations and speeches will examine such topics as dating violence, interfaith tolerance, recycling, gender equity and other issues relevant to teen-age life.

The keynote speaker this year will be Professor Dalton Conley of New York University who will discuss his experiences growing up as a poor, white youth in a mostly black and Latino housing project. Also, Bakari T. Sellers, an African-American member of the South Carolina House of Representatives will speak on American-Israeli relationships.

The week will end with a step dance workshop by the GHS Step Team and a performance by Infinite Roots, an African drumming and dancing troupe all demonstrating that marching to the beat of different drums is to be accepted and celebrated!

“Grant me that change of initial direction”

During last week's work session, Superintendent Roger Lulow made an unusual request. It was during the board's discussion of the reports for the Social Studies Curriculum Review and Science Monitoring Report, that Lulow cited the need to have a curriculum roadmap for next year.

The interim super asked that the board to allow him to deviate from their original guidance to simply "leave everything alone” and not recommend any changes to the policies of the district during his tenure in Greenwich.

Lulow stated his belief for increased urgency in the curriculum review process and requested that the BoE’s Policy Governance Committee take up the issue quickly. Citing a need for better direction for the entire process, he asked for a definition of curriculum review that the board and administration can agree upon as “this is where the two intersect."

He also asked that the committee review the design of the process to clarify its purpose, review cycle and the overall speed of the process. He cited the need for the reviews to also take into consideration external factors such as the evolving state standards for core curriculum.

Board members agreed with Lulow's recommendation and the issue will be sent to the Board's Policy Governance Committee.

Weighted Grades - Getting 5 out of 4 points

Headmaster Chris Winters will be holding two Headmaster Forums on Monday, Feb. 6 for parents on the topic of weighted grades.

Winters will give a presentation at 7:45 a.m. and again at 6 p.m. in the GHS Media Center as he seeks input from parents for a proposed recommendation to the Superintendent. Winters would like to propose that beginning with the 9th graders in 2012-2013, the reduction of the weighting of grades for GPA in all Honors and AP classes from 1.0 to .5.

Winters proposal includes other changes for next year's freshmen including grades for PE and Heath & Wellness will be factored into a student's GPA.

Winters has said that all high schools in Fairfield County weight grades with the exception of Wilton and that out of the 22 schools examined, only one other town (Joel Barlow in Easton/Redding) uses weights as much as Greenwich.

 - for 10th-11th graders and parents!

A discussion will be held Wednesday, Feb. 8 from 7 to 8:15 p.m. at Greenwich Town Hall.

As college costs and competition mount, applications and search strategies need to be smarter than ever. The JCC Greenwich is hosting a free consultation with leading college admissions experts — including highly sought consultants who have generously donated this evening of college advisory to the community.

Learn how to score A+ on the strategies required for the testing and application process, college selection, interview and more. The panel will be moderated by one of New England's leading private college consultants, Jan Traynor. Panelists are Kervin Pillot, assistant director for Undergraduate Admissions at NYU; Debra Resnicoff, admissions consultant and essay specialist, and Diane Winston, SAT consultant.

Admission is free, but registration required, at jccgreenwich.org or (203) 552-1818.

Last Chance For Magnetic Attraction

This Friday, Feb. 10, is parents' last chance to apply to one of the district's magnet schools. 

The Greenwich Board of Education operates 4 elementary magnet schools that accepts new students through this application process.

The is an authorized International Baccalaureate-Primary Years Program school;  

 also offers the International Baccalaureate-Primary Years Program;

is an expanded arts in ed program, Spanish k-5 and Suzuki music opportunities;

 specializes in world languages.

Winter Break (Sans Snow)

Greenwich Public Schools will be on a February recess next week starting Monday, Feb. 13 through the following Monday, Feb. 20th.

If you are looking for some 'staycation' strategies to keep you sane
and your kids occupied in Greenwich, keep Patch-ed into Greenwich Patch!

- Greenwich Public Schools will be closed but the Boys & Girls Club will be open. Feb. 13 through the 17 - the Winter Vacation Club will be open 7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Greenwich Basketball - being held at Carmel Academy, 270 Lake Ave. Greenwich School Break Basketball Camps - Monday, Feb. 20, 9 a.m. through 1 p.m., for Boys and Girls grades K - 7.

Dorothy Hamill Skating Rink - Sherman Avenue Greenwich. Check website for skate schedule. Rentals and concession available. Fees vary.

: 613 Riversville Rd., Greenwich; Grades K-5; 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.

Tuesday, Feb. 14: TRACKS & TRACES - Hop, waddle, bounce and trot your way around the Audubon sanctuary in search of animal tracks and traces. Learn how to identify footprints and search for clues in the snow and mudas we discover the amazing wintery tales of the secretive world of animals in winter. Warm up your senses and bring your inner detective out!

Wednesday, Feb. 15: HOMES & HIDEOUTS: You may not think that snow, rocks, logs, mud or fallen leaves are the coziest places to spend a  cold winter’s day, but animals trying to survive the northern winters do. Learn about the many ways local wildlife copes with the cold and snow, while discovering their hiding places at Audubon. Don’t forget your warm gloves on this day – you’ll need them when we build snow shelters for people AND animals!

- 1 Museum Dr.. February School Vacation Workshops: A series of one hour hands-on workshops, for students in grades 1-3 who will explore the exhibition Coming Full Circle: The Greenwich Art Society Celebrates 100 at the Bruce Museum and then work on fine art projects in drawing, printmaking, sculpture and painting.
Tuesday – Works on Paper: Pastels, Pen-and-Ink and Colored Pencils
Wednesday – Impressions: Scratchboard Printmaking
Thursday – Sculpture: Creations in Clay
Friday – Paintings: Tempera on Canvas

Each workshop is a complete program, but the four projects are complementary. These inclusive workshops are suitable for students of all abilities. Members $5, nonmembers $7, per student, per day, includes all materials.

Reservations are required for each day by calling the museum (203) 869-0376.


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