The New School News


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FALL CLEAN-UP WEEKEND: Many hands make light work. We have an ambitious list of interior and exterior facilities tasks to tackle this weekend. Join us Saturday from 9-1 for our Fall Work Day. We will need a couple of lawnmowers, some weed whackers, and some folks who enjoy weeding for sure. Shovels, rakes, pruners, and other implements of destruction are also needed. The school has some tools, but not many.

Our outdoor task list includes:

  • Removing the chalk residue from front exterior wall
  • Check lighting at the front sign
  • Pulling invasive plants / weeds from Rain Garden
  • Weeding our other garden beds
  • Pruning trees / shrubs
  • Preparing the greenhouse for winter greens
  • Repotting various houseplants
  • Filling holes in the front yard
  • Clearing the grounds of excess brush and trash
  • Mowing the lawn

Inside, we have numerous painting projects and some deep cleaning tasks like cleaning and waxing the floors and washing windows. Most of the supplies needed for these tasks are already available at the school.

Unable to make it on Saturday? Please let us know! Christine will be available to help out with tasks on Sunday between 9-1.

GOT SPRING BULBS? We'd love to plant some spring flowers for some early color next April. Susan has Irises to plant, too. Bring a package or two of tulip, daffodil, or other spring favorites!

“If people did not do silly things, nothing intelligent would ever get done.”


Upcoming Dates for Your Calendar
  • PSAT’s Reminder: Sophomores who signed up to take the NMSQT/PSAT test will be taking their test on Wednesday, October 13 at 9:00am. Please try to get a good night’s rest and be sure to eat breakfast.
  • Weekend of October 16/17 Fall Clean-up at TNS
  • Saturday October 23: Fall Open House 10:00-1:00

  • Wednesday, October 27: Teacher Day--students not in school
  • Monday, November 1: All School Meeting 6:00 in-person at TNS
  • Thursday, November 11: No School Veteran's Day

Next Open House - Join us!

Saturday, Oct. 23rd, 10am-1pm

38 York Street

Kennebunk, ME

Join us for our next open house! Invite a friend who might be interested in The New School, and bring them as your guest.

We need a few more volunteers to help out with this event. Here's what we have planned.

RSVPs are enabled for this event.


CAREER WEEK NETWORKING | Ally and Josie are planning a short whole school intensive focusing on career exploration. Career Week will take place during our Winter Intersession in January and we are currently looking for job shadow experiences, guest speakers, and tours/behind the scenes looks of businesses. If you (or someone you know) would be willing to share what you do with some of our students, connect with Ally or Josie.

INTENSIVE PLANNING: Staff and students are homing in on our topics of study for our 3-Week Intensives in January and February. Some of the cool ideas on the table right now include a culinary adventure, winter sports and winter ecology studies, an exploration of cryptozoology, ghost hunting, and other strange phenomena, and an arts investigation. As we continue to refine our ideas and dig deeper into our planning, we will share our ideas with the community.

EXPLORATIONS: We will continue to take advantage of the beautiful fall weather on our Wednesday explorations for the next few weeks. Last week students went for a hike in Ogunquit along Marginal Way while others stayed at TNS and created seasonal yard decorations. Tomorrow Evan will take a group of students to volunteer at the Animal Welfare Society in West Kennebunk. We will fire up our outdoor pizza oven and experiment with cooking in it, and we will also take a stroll through Kennebunk's historic Hope Cemetery and do some gravestone rubbings. In upcoming weeks, we will also explore special effects make-up techniques and learn about the estuary research that takes place down the road at the Wells Reserve. Explorations provide us with time to explore the world around us, get out into our communities, help others, and practice life skills. As we move into the second quarter, teachers will begin to support student-led Explorations and encourage them to learn from one another and share their passions.

STUDENT-LED CONFERENCES: As we near the end of our first quarter of learning, students will be asked to reflect on their classwork and to identify goals for the second quarter. Progress Reports will be issued during the first week of November, and student-led conferences will take place with students, advisors, and parents. Stay tuned for specific dates. Advisors will be in touch soon.

3-MONTH REVIEWS: Students who are new to The New School will engage in a three-month review process in November. The purpose of the three-month review is to ensure that the school is a good fit for our students and to evaluate how well students are adjusting to our learning community. If you are a new family, Christine will reach out to you at the end of October with more information about the process.


PSAT’s Reminder: Sophomores who signed up to take the NMSQT/PSAT test will be taking their test on Wednesday, October 13 at 9:00. Please try to get a good night’s rest and be sure to eat breakfast.

Picture Day! We are planning a school picture day - TNS style. The Un-Yearbook Committee is collaborating with Josie’s “Behind the Lenz” class. Photography students will be taking school pictures on Monday, November 1 during Advisory. All staff and students will be photographed.

Various community groups utilize the school for their meetings. These meetings are open to interested students. These meetings are listed on our calendar:

  • New England Radio Discussion Society meets every other Tuesday at 7:00 PM. Their next meeting is October 19.
  • Ukulele Strummers of Southern Maine will begin meeting on the 3rd Sunday of each month at 3:00. First meeting on October 24.
  • The Astronomical Society of Northern New England meets on the first Friday of each month at 6:30 pm. Next meeting will be November 5.

As a member of The New School community, families are entitled to utilize the school at no charge on a space available basis. Contact Susan if you are interested.


VACCINE STATUS | Please let us know your child’s vaccination status. This impacts decisions we will make about COVID-19 responses and how we will plan our 3-week Intensives.

FLU SHOTS | We encourage students to get their flu shot, so we can avoid illnesses in the school. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has expanded its annual flu shot advice to include everyone over 6 months old. That means you, even if you got both the seasonal flu and the H1N1 vaccine last year, because your immunity decreases over time and this year's shot includes a new strain. We hope that other preventive measures against COVID-19, such as distancing, wearing masks, and washing hands, will help to prevent the spread of all viruses in our communities, but a flu shot is the single best measure to decrease the risk and severity of influenza during this time of increased health risks and uncertainty.


Team Coordinators:

A very BIG Thank You to Mike Ouellet for the terrific job replacing the students’ coat hooks. It made Susan’s day seeing those old hooks upgraded to a safer alternative.


The New School is an independent, democratically run private high school in Kennebunk, Maine. We learn by doing, and encourage not just academic achievement, but development of the mind, body, and spirit. Our goal is to give TNS students the tools they need to be active, informed citizens of a democracy.

“Education is not preparation for life; education is life itself.

Education, therefore, is a process of living and not a preparation for future living.”

― John Dewey

The New School | Kennebunk, Maine

The New School offers rolling admission, so students can apply any time throughout the year. Parents & Students, please spread the word, let people know all the cool stuff going on here, and invite friends to come visit an Open House!