Dartmouth Public Schools

District Newsletter

Dr. Bonny Gifford

Kindness Matters

October 26, 2017

Career Pathways and STEM Education!

We are pleased to announce Dartmouth High has been awarded a $500,000 grant through the very competitive Massachusetts Skills Capital Grant Program. We were one of 32 recipients from a pool of 66 applicants.

"The 2016 Massachusetts Economic Development Bill established three years of funding for the Workforce Skills Cabinet to administer the Skills Capital Grant Program. The program’s intent is to increase the capacity and quality of vocational training and education by providing funds to eligible schools and institutions for the purchase/installation of capital equipment.

The Skills Capital Grant Program awards grants to support vocational/technical training, upgrades and expansion of career technical education, and training of high-quality career pathway programs that are aligned with regional economic and workforce development priorities for in-demand industries.

Grant applicants should facilitate collaboration to provide students enrolled in eligible vocational/technical schools with post-secondary opportunities. High quality career pathways are in high-skill, high-demand industry sectors that include:
align with labor market information regarding high demand workforce needs, support secondary and post-secondary linkages, offer focused career guidance and advisement systems, provide integrated rigorous instructional courses, include structured work readiness activities and work-based learning experiences, provide the opportunity to obtain an industry-recognized credential or college credits towards a Certificate, Associate, or Baccalaureate degree."

This funding will support the development/enhancement of our biotechnology, robotics engineering and computer science pathways. Currently teachers are working with Highlander Institute to create these high-tech career pathways and this revenue stream will provide the boost we need.

On October 11, Principal Thibault, Dr. Peter Bangs, Mrs. Tracy Oliveira and Superintendent Gifford attended a ceremony where Governor Baker presented our team with this tremendous award. No words can describe the opportunities this will present for our students!

Field Hockey Team Senior Girls

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Congratulations Lisa Maucione

Massachusetts Reading Association (MRA) New Vice President

Congratulations to Lisa Maucione, Reading Specialist at Demello School who has been named Vice President Elect of the Massachusetts Reading Association. This well deserved honor is a five year commitment to leadership as in year two, Lisa will serve as Vice President, in year three as President Elect, in year four as President, and in year five as Immediate Past President. Congratulations, Lisa!

Title I Family Night

Potter School Title 1 Math and Pizza Event was a success! Many families attended and were given some information on our Title 1 Program, as well as an opportunity to play some math games and participate in a literacy project. There was a raffle, math and literacy stations, and of course plenty of pizza! Everyone left with a goodie bag which included a deck of cards, dice and a some ideas for dice and card games.

Elementary Social Workers

Elementary Social Workers meet this week to learn how to navigate Atlas and input their Curriculum. Once completed teachers will be able to cross reference grade level Second Step units to integrate into content areas. Teachers will have a reference to language and lessons taught at grades before and after their grade level. Second Step lessons ensure successful social-emotional skills instruction. When we build skills in the classroom we build skills for life.
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ESE Special Education Professional Development Series

The Department of Education Office of Special Education Planning and Policy Professional Development Series (formerly known as Special Education Summer Institutes) offers free training opportunities for Massachusetts educators, paraeducators, related service providers, and administrators throughout the year. The 17 courses have varying start dates and focus on topics ranging from educational equity to integrating social and emotional learning. More information, including course descriptions, dates, and enrollment information, is available online.

Congratulations Wesley Lima

Wesley Lima, DHS English Teacher and Alumni of DPS, recently had an article he collaborated on published in the Journal of Urban Education. Enjoy his article on the importance of student engagement! Congratulations Wes!

Our MassCUE Team Brings Technology Back to DPS

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MassCUE (Massachusetts Computer Using Educators)

Once again, DPS' MassCUE team took on the conference in full force sporting DPS

t-shirts and walked away with countless idea on how to integrate technology into our curriculum. Our Instructional Technology Specialist teamed up with classroom teachers to attend sessions and collaborate. Please read some of attendees biggest takeaways from the conference. Interested in learning more reach out to your schools Instructional Technology Specialist (ITS.)

Rob Perrotti

Virtual Reality Classrooms using virtual reality goggles and Google Expedition. Take students on guided tours anywhere in the world. Green Screen made easy for all levels. There is an app on the Apple App store for Ipads to conduct easy green screen projects. DoInk is the name of the app. Students can create original content of themselves in different backgrounds. Great for student presentations. Or perhaps you would like your students to conduct their own weather forecasts.

Do Ink App- Only $2.99 in the app store http://www.doink.com/

Laura Gardner

BrainPOP now has the ability for Kids to make their own videos. They can create a concept map, import it into their video and annotate it. Kids can also use the images in the brainpop Library and make informational videos on many topics. This feature was just released this summer.

Goosechase is an iPad app for creating online scavenger hunts. We did one in the session and it was SO MUCH FUN. We had to take videos and pictures of our “learning” and we were competing w other groups. It was awesome.

Leslie Gamache

I realized that there is so many ideas out there. Google Expedition, Goose Chase, combining PBL with google to make our jobs easier and even paperless! Also using infographics to enhance learning! I loved the final presentation about using Goose Chase to go on scavenger hunts using Ipads. What a great way to integrate the students and adults cell phones… it was a really fun and interactive workshop!

Sandra Chicca

Procreate App- what a great way to incorporate Art with technology. Also can be used for storytelling,

(Helen) Temple Mitchell

One new presentation tool was emaze. emaze link Students can just drop pictures and press play. Grade Cam is an amazing tool for teachers. The best features: no paper necessary, no grading (once you put in the answer sheet), reads written words, will read slopes and lines, and will upload to your Aspen gradebook with a click of a button.

Nick Bolger

Shane Fennensey and I visited 5 or 6 workshops today and my biggest takeaway was just how far ahead of the curve Dartmouth is with most of those things.


Make all checks payable to “Town of Dartmouth/T-shirts”

and forward to Nellie Affonso, 8 Bush Street, Dartmouth, MA 02748

STAFF SPOTLIGHT - Jessica Lussier

Name: Jessica Skammels Lussier

School/Position: Pupil Support Services Secretary

Hometown: Dartmouth (North Side)

Education: After being part of the last class to graduate from the old Dartmouth High (Hi Ms. Madsen & Mrs. Vieira!!) I earned my BA in English from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst.

A long term goal I am working toward: I’d love to complete a Masters in Library Science and become a school librarian, (preferably in a middle school because they’re the best little weirdos at that age.)

Role model or someone who has had a great impact on my life: Peggy Olson. As the trailblazing female secretary turned copy-writer on Mad Men, she worked her way up with no guidance and without any laws backing her up, relying purely on her talent and drive. She took risks and ultimately did what was right for her, not what she was “supposed” to do. It also doesn’t hurt that she wore dresses I would kill for.

If I could eat dinner with someone famous, dead or alive, it would be: Bernie “Feel the Bern” Sanders. We’d probably all chip in money for the food and cook it as a cooperative group.

If I could travel anywhere in the world it would be: Vermont. I’ve never been and apparently that’s a huge deal. Also, Bernie lives there so there’s that.

Pet Peeve: Loud, open-mouthed chewing

Favorite leisure time activities: Making seasonally themed playlists/mixes and being with my children, Elliot (4) and Mabel (2).

Favorite movie: If I had to pick one all-time favorite desert island movie that I could watch for the rest of my life I would have to choose “Pee Wee’s Big Adventure.” It a timeless classic.

Favorite book: I have read the “Harry Potter” series 9 times and each and every time I find something new to love. Hogwarts is like my second home.

My favorite motto or saying: “Happiness can be found even in the darkest of times, if only one remembers to turn on the light.” Albus Percival Wulfric Brian Dumbledore.

What I like best about working at DPS: Eating doughnuts with Mandi, and I don’t even like doughnuts that much.

Standards In Action!

DMS 8th graders in the Pielech block visited the New Bedford Whaling Museum. They are studying Colonial American politics and economics in Social Studies. The same students are also analyzing Frederick Douglass' "What to the Slave is the Fourth of July?" speech in ELA's persuasion and argument unit. ​​​​They were able to explore Douglass' life as they followed the Underground Railroad walking tour provided by the National Parks Department, stopping at where he lived while in New Bedford. The two part field trip was a powerful way for students to blend history and ELA while making connections to the world around them.

Thanks to Bridget Taylor, Step Up teacher at DHS, for sharing this video! It reminds us that what we do is critical in the life of a child.


Social Media and DPS!

Keep Up to date with events and activities in all our schools.

Let us remember: One book, one pen, one child, and one teacher can change the world. Malala Yousafzai

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