Category Archives: Community Notes

Summer Camp at the John M. Barry Boys & Girls Club of Newton

Camp Boys & Girls Club focuses on the WHOLE experience of Camp, which allows them to fully implement quality programming that is unique and fun.

There are five sessions each summer and each session has a unique theme and field trips. During the days, campers will be engaged with sports, arts & crafts, project-based learning activities, service learning, creative projects that are site specific at the Club, sports Clinics and much more.

Visit for more information and camp registration.

Congratulations Alexandra Etscovitz – Elementary Art Teacher of the Year

Congratulations to Alexandra Etscovitz, just named the Elementary Art Teacher of the Year. Alexandra Etscovitz has been teaching at Memorial-Spaulding Elementary School for 15 years, the same school she once attended as a child…..

Read more about her and this prestigious award from the Massachusetts Art Education Association here: MAEA

The MAEA Board of Directors are looking forward to honoring and celebrating the 2019 MAEA Art Educators of the Year.

The awards ceremony has been scheduled for March 16th, 11:00 – 11:50 am in Meeting Room 310/Center at the Hynes Convention Center, 900 Boylston Street, Boston, MA. Registration for the NAEA Convention is NOT required to attend the MAEA Awards Ceremony which is open to the public.

Newton PTO Council 2019-02-15 08:53:45

Dear Friends,

This update is for the 2/11/2019 Newton School Committee meeting:

Superintendent Update

New Business

  • Mary Eich, Assistant Superintendent for Teaching and Learning, was joined by Steven Rattendi, Director of IT, to present an Update on Information Technology and Libraries.   This included an overview of the department, as well as information on database management, the new 1:1 laptop initiative in the high schools, network infrastructure, and G (Google) Suite Expansion.
  • Liam Hurley, Chief Financial Officer, and Julie Kirrane, Director of Business and Planning, presented an FY19 Fiscal and Operations Update showing NPS in good fiscal health.
  • Liam Hurley and Julie Kirrane also presented the Facilities Update, which included information regarding the Cabot School Building Project, the Lincoln-Eliot/NECP School Building Projects, the Cabot and Horace Mann School moves, the MSBA Accelerated Repair Program, the Lincoln-Eliot Heating and Building Envelope Project, 225 Nevada Street (Carr) improvements. They also provided updates on heating issues, the Franklin Kindergarten wing, and the revised plans for solar panels at Brown Middle School. 
  • We reviewed the System-wide goals for 2018 – 2019 followed by a mid-year check in on the Superintendent’s Goals.

Old Business

Consent Agenda

Next Meeting

Our next meeting is a special meeting on Monday March 4 at 5:30 p.m. This meeting with include a discussion of NPS’ use of academic data, as well as votes on the Countryside Statement of Interest to the MSBA and the Brown solar panels. While there is no public comment at special meetings, you can always reach us by email or phone.

We hope you found this summary useful. You can access all School Committee meeting documents via the NPS website ( Additionally, if you are interested in watching an SC meeting from home or a recorded meeting, you can obtain access via

As always, we are very happy to answer any questions or discuss any concerns you may have. Please feel free to contact us via the email address below.

The Newton School Committee

Spring Events at Newton Cemetery & Arboretum

Our Woods in a Warming World: The Future Outlook

Nearly 80% of New England is covered by forests, and they play an important role in our daily lives. From clean drinking water and clean air, to wildlife habitat, recreation, and economic benefits, forests are critical to our well-being and quality of life. But, with the changing climate, will tomorrow’s forests look the same as they do today? Will maple syrup become a thing of the past? Will spruce and fir disappear from our mountains? Jennifer Hushaw Shakun, Manomet’s Applied Forest Scientist, will answer these questions and more at a special evening presentation. Join us to learn how our climate is changing, what it means for our forests, and how healthy forests are one of our best tools for combating the challenge of climate change.

As an urban forest, the Cemetery’s mature canopy plays an important role in mitigating the effects of climate change. The Cemetery has an active tree planting program to sustain its canopy coverage that assesses the survivability of newly planted trees in a changing climate and long term outcomes of planting decisions made now.

Co-hosted with Manomet

Register here
March 12th, 6:00 – 7:30 pm
Newton Cemetery Chapel

Spring Tree Tour

Arbor Day is April 26th this year. Come celebrate at Newton Cemetery with a tree tour showcasing the specimens that enhance the grounds. Cemetery arborist Robert Reardon will highlight some interesting and unique characteristics of the numerous varieties. The tour will last approximately 90 minutes and take place rain or shine. Comfortable walking shoes, water and plenty of questions are recommended. Meet outside the main office just inside the front gate at 791 Walnut Street. Parking is available along the cemetery roads or the chapel parking lot. For more information, call 617-332-0047.

The tour is free and open to all. Suggested Donation: $10.00 (donations to the Friends of Newton Cemetery are welcome and support arboretum education and care).

April 27th, 1:00 pm
Newton Cemetery

Landscape Pests and Problems Walkabout – Diseases and Weeds

Get some hands-on experience scouting and identifying landscape diseases and weed problems. Join Randy Prostak, UMASS Extension Weed Specialist and Nick Brazee, UMASS Extension Plant Pathologist, for a walk through the landscape as they discuss and demonstrate how to put IPM practices to work efficiently and examine some of the most common pest and cultural problems of woody ornamentals. Dress for walking; workshop held rain or shine. Bring a clipboard, pencil and hand lens if possible.

Pesticide & Professional Credits: 2 pesticide contact hours for categories 36 and Applicators License available. Association credits: 1/2 MCLP and 1 MCH credits. ISA credits requested. (This event is directed at industry professionals.)

Registration: Preregistration required as space is limited; the cost is $50.00 (group discount available). Download printable registration form here.

May 10th, 4:00 – 6:00 pm
Newton Cemetery

Spring Bird Walk

Test your skills and pick up some new ones this spring with guides from Manomet’s Landbird Conservation program as they lead this year’s Newton Cemetery Bird Walk once again. Birders of all experience levels are welcome on this two hour walk around the cemetery’s arboretum in search of migrant warblers, vireos, thrushes, and more! Scheduled for the peak of spring migration, there will be ample opportunity to brush up on your birding-by-ear techniques, as well as catch a glimpse of breeding males in their most dapper plumage. Changes in climate will be discussed and how Manomet’s long-term research projects bring its effects on migration to light. Participation is limited, and last years’ program reached capacity so be sure to register early!

Come equipped with comfortable shoes, binoculars (we will provide a few pairs to share), and water. The walk will meet just inside the main gate in front of the office. Parking is available along the cemetery road or chapel parking lot.

$15.00 Non-Members, $10.00 Members.
For additional information, please contact Chris Boudreaux at 508-224-6521, ext. 226 or or visit
Co-hosted with Manomet

May 15th, 7:00 am
Newton Cemetery

Spring Plant Sale

Celebrate National Public Gardens week – May 13-19th this year – at the Friends of Newton Cemetery Spring Plant Sale to shop for annuals, perennials and houseplants that have been grown in the greenhouse on the grounds. There will also be pollinator plant seeds available to purchase. Proceeds from the sale support the Pollinator Garden.

May 18th, 10:00 am – 4:00 pm
Newton Cemetery, Main Fountain Area

The ProjectCSGIRLS Competition

The ProjectCSGIRLS Competition for Middle School Girls challenges participants in 6th-8th grade to build something using computer science and technology that can help solve an imminent social problem under one of four themes – global health, a safer world, bridging inequalities, and intelligent technology. Judges will select semifinalists, finalists, and national winners. All finalists will be invited to DC for the national gala, the ultimate celebration of girls in computing, in June of 2019 during which they will participate in workshops, listen to guest speakers, tour tech companies, participate in a formal awards ceremony, and showcase their projects to the public.

Registration for the 2019 ProjectCSGIRLS competition closes March 1st. The deadline to submit projects is April 15th. Mentors will be provided on a first-come, first-serve basis so if students would like to request a mentor, they should register early!

Informational flyer is available here: ProjectCSGIRLS

Join NFP’s Walk for Hunger Team!

The Newton Food Pantry is proud to be participating in Project Bread’s 51st Walk for Hunger & 5K Run on May 5th. The pantry team’s fundraising efforts will directly support the Newton Food Pantry. Any adults and teens (ages 13+) are welcome to join the team.

The money raised by Walk participants like the Newton Food Pantry will provide grants to hundreds of community-based programs that rely on support—food pantries, hot meal programs, summer meals for kids, farm and garden initiatives, health center programs and more. Last year, the Walk supported 315 local programs in nearly 100 Massachusetts communities.

Please visit NFP’s Walk for Hunger Team page to join the team, make a donation, and for more information about how the Newton Food Pantry supports our community.

Opportunity to join the board at the Centre Street Food Pantry

The Centre Street Food Pantry board is looking for two energetic new board members; one who has strong connections in the business community in Newton and another with experience managing events. This is a working board and in addition to managing programs, they ask our members to help out at pantry-related events and host work days at the pantry. You’ll meet monthly on Monday or Tuesday evening. If you are interested in being part of this fun and meaningful non-profit board, please send a resume and letter of introduction to

FORJ Meeting (Families Organizing for Racial Justice)

Join in an interactive evening with Madeline McNeely, founder of Conditioning Leaders. She is a facilitator, trainer, coach and consultant who will share practices gleaned from her most popular trainings on good group leadership practices in order to help you to ensure your FORJ team is operating at its best. This is a special opportunity for your FORJ team to reflect on your experiences and learn helpful tools for sustainability and success!

Please register here for the February 12th Meeting

February 12th, 7:00 – 9:00 pm (with optional school group time at 6:30 pm or 9:00pm)
Angier Elementary School

Newton CPA Program: Upcoming Funding Deadline and February 12th Meeting

Newton’s next CPA funding deadline is sooner than you think!

If your project is aiming for the fall 2019 funding round, contact Alice Ingerson at or 617-796-1144 by March 29th to request an in-person orientation meeting. This meeting is required as the first step in the funding process.

The agenda and pre-meeting packet for the next CPC meeting on February 12th are now online from All items on this agenda are committee business; no proposal or project decisions are scheduled.

Executive Function Skills in Children and Adolescents

Teach children to manage their time, space and materials ….and keep their emotions in check!

This presentation sponsored by Newton SEPAC and Newton Public Schools, will cover powerful strategies to help your child develop independent executive function; teach students to internally sense the sweep of time, self-monitor in order to sustain concentration, manage pace, and complete tasks in allocated time frames; improve students’ motivation and task initiation, help them to plan homework and long-term projects/papers, and coach students to think in an organized way; and encourage self-initiative to manage homework and personal belongings.

The presenter is Ms. Kristen Jacobsen, MS CCC-SLP, a trained speech-language pathologist who is Co-Director at the Cognitive Connections Executive Function Practice.

February 13th, 7:30 – 9:00 pm
Newton North High School Auditorium,  457 Walnut Street