Williston School District /March 18, 2015


A Message from the Administration

SBAC Information (Parent update #2 of 2)

by Jacqueline Parks, Building Principal

In 2010 Vermont joined 43 states in adopting the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) in Math and English Language Arts. CSSU developed an implementation plan that provided several years of professional learning and implementation starting in 2012. Information about CCSS can be found on our CSSU website as well as the Agency of Education website.

With new national standards comes a new national assessment aligned with them. Vermont students will no longer take the NECAP assessment for English/Language Arts and Math each October. Beginning this spring, all Vermont (and 43 other states) students in grades 3-8 and 11 will take the new national test, Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium (SBAC) in Mathematics and English/Language Arts. This assessment will be administered on a computer. Test administration throughout Vermont provides a wide test window (the last 90 days of school) allowing for more consideration of student learning and school wide schedule.

Each of the five schools in CSSU is developing a testing schedule for grade level teams that is workable in each building. You can imagine the complexity of organizing student groups, certified test administrators (these are the teachers), and the electronic devices they will be using. To assist your understanding further, please see Article 1 in this two part series, the Q and A , and the table that compares SBAC to NECAP.

How can I learn more?

For more information about Common Core State Standards and the SMARTER Balanced Assessment (SBAC), please go to the following sites:



Upcoming SBAC Assessment: Our Wifi Network

In the February 11, 2015 School Bell, there was an article about the upcoming SBAC assessment. The SBAC replaces the NECAP tests that had been administered in the fall to students in grades 3-8. The SBAC testing window begins on March 17 and lasts for 3 months. Each WCS team or parts of teams have been assigned a testing window of their own within that time frame. Check with your child's teacher for more specifics.

All students and adults have been asked to turn off personal devices during the school day for these 3 months or disconnect from our WSDPublic wifi. That way those that are testing can do so with a fully-functioning wifi network.

We wanted to let parents know about this change. If your child chooses not to turn off their phone and he/she disconnects from our wifi instead, it may result in the phone accessing your cell phone carrier's 3G, 4G, or LTE networks. This may impact the use of data.

Thank you for your support as we move forward with the new assessment. If you have any questions about the SBAC assessment, please get in touch with your child’s teacher.

Smarter Balanced Assessment: Another Measure of Learning

from Rebecca Holcombe, Secretary of Education, Vermont Agency of Education

Today, schools across Vermont will begin administering the Smarter Balanced Assessment, which is the new state test and which replaces the NECAPs.

As your child takes these tests, I ask you to do her or him a few favors:

First of all, keep these tests in perspective: they are just another tool to measure learning that your teachers can use to plan improvements to their teaching through a better understanding of your child’s progress to date. Our children will take tests for all kinds of purposes in life: to get a driver’s license, to be eligible to hunt, to enter a profession. Tests will likely be a part of their lives. We don’t do them any favors when we get our children stressed about tests.

Second, help us all keep focused on the purpose of education. We want our students to be engaged in school and excited to try out their learning in new contexts. We hope our students understand that good work takes a lot of effort. I visit a lot of schools and speak to many students, and when I ask them what the best measure is of how much they have learned, they describe senior capstone projects, objects they created on 3D printers, a computer program they wrote, a nature trail they planned and built for a community, mock trials, long-flying hot air balloons they built using scientific concepts, films they made to help students with disabilities think about post-secondary opportunities. One student pointed at a pile of drafts, and spoke about how much work it took to create a great piece of writing.

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March Concert Information (grades 7 & 8)

Wednesday, 3/18 concert!

Evening: 7pm (6pm call)

Click here for more details.

Annual Giant Indoor Yard Sale!

Sponsored by Voyager house & benefiting all WCS Level III end of year trips

What: Shop tables full of donated treasures! Household goods, Clothing, Accessories, Sports Equipment, Toys, Art, Electronics, Collectibles & More! Food Concessions too!

When: March 21st 9am - 2pm

Where: Williston Central School Cafeteria

Please donate items to the sale: Friday March 20, 6-8 pm donations will be happily accepted for the sale. Clean out your clutter and help students at the same time!

Come Shop March 21st!

Don’t Miss WCS Dialogue Night Wednesday, April 1st - 6PM - 7:45PM

What percentage…..According to the 2013 Youth Risk Behavior Survey (YRBS), given to WCS 6- 8th grade students, what percentage of 6th graders reported that they “ever used inhalants”?

a. 24% b. 12% c. 5% d. 1%

For the answer to this and many other questions on drinking, drugs use and self-harming behaviors, come to the annual WCS Dialogue Night. At Dialogue Night, Vermont Kids Against Tobacco (VKAT) students will share their assessment of the 2013 Youth Risk Behavior Survey data for our school. With the help of students from LEAD and AWOD, parents and students will then talk in small groups and decide what topic they would like to discuss for the “dialogue”. Parents and their children will be seated at different tables in order to enrich these conversations about adolescent issues. There will be door prizes for students and adults. For the pizza part of the evening, 6-6:15PM, please RSVP to Sarah, SAP Counselor, or 871-6079, by Monday, March 30.

Here is some parent feedback we received from past Dialogue Nights:

“The idea of switching up kids from their families was pure genius!”

“I thought it was so interesting to hear the thoughts and concerns of kids my son’s age. I loved how open and articulate they were.”

“I enjoyed the chance to hear from the four teens (at my table) about how we (parents) embarrass them, and what they really want from us.”

Click here for a flyer for this event.

Quebecois/Franco-American Song and Dance Workshops

WCS French students participated in Quebecois/Franco-American Song and Dance Workshops with performing artists Benoit Bourque, his son Antoine Pigeon-Bourque of Montreal, Quebec and Michèle Choinière, who is a French teacher at WCS. On March 4th, French students learned traditional songs in French and foot percussion with Madame Choinière. On March 5th, Benoit Bourque and his son Antoine, taught French students traditional dances, step-dancing and percussion. Students danced traditional “quadrille” dances together, learned “metis” broom dances as well as percussion with bones and spoons. On March 6th, the entire school was treated to a concert of traditional music, song, step-dancing, quadrille dance and percussion with Benoit, Antoine and Michèle. Students were invited to perform on stage, displaying skills that they learned during the workshops. An enjoyable time was had by all! Thanks to the generous support received from the FAP, WCS was able to host our visiting artists from Quebec and students were given this rare opportunity. Merci Beaucoup, FAP!

Jump Rope for Heart March 27, 2015

WSD's annual Jump Rope for Heart will take place at Allen Brook School the morning of Friday, March 27 from 8:45-11:15 am.

Jump Rope for Heart is a fundraiser for the American Heart Association. Participating WCS students will be bused to ABS in the morning and brought back to WCS after the event is over.

Children in grades 1-8 can participate in the event. Signed permission slips should be handed in to a physical education teacher. Registration deadline is Friday, March 20 or when we reach the maximum capacity of 375 students (whichever comes first). Fundraising envelopes will be given out after permission slips are handed in. Fundraising envelopes must be turned in by March 24. Look in the pledge envelopes for information about on-line fundraising opportunities. Classroom teachers with concerns about a student’s status for participation in the Jump Rope for Heart may hold the student from participating.


Jump Rope for Heart (grades 1-8)

I give ________________________ (student name)

permission to participate in the 2015 Jump Rope for Heart on March 27 at ABS.

__________________________________ (parent/guardian signature)

__________________________________ (teacher signature)

I am interested in helping the morning of the 27th (8:45-11:15)

_________________________ name______________________ phone ______________________ email

Give completed form to physical education teacher.


Click here for the FAP home page and meeting minutes.


Final Week for Classroom Donations for the Big Basket Raffle. Click HERE to see what your child’s classroom teacher has for a theme. Donations must be in by Friday, March 20th. If you have already brought in an item for the basket, thank you so much!

• Still need a few more volunteers to help on March 28th, especially selling raffle tickets and bringing in items for our refreshment table. Click HERE to sign up if you are able to help.


A great way to have a few hours to yourself!

What: An evening of supervised fun for kids sponsored by Full House

Where: Drop-off/Pick-up at the Bell Tower Entrance at WCS

Who: Children grades K - 4th

When: Saturday, March 28th, 6:00pm-9:00pm

Activities Include: 2 Bounce Castles, Music, Face Painting, Bowling, Basketball, Movie, Crafts, Bean Bag Toss, Hot Dogs, Snacks galore and more!


● Pre-Registration Discount through March 25th: $8/child, $15/family

● At the door: $10/child, $20/ family

● Snacks are $.50 each, Drinks $.50 - $1.00, Hot dogs are $1.00

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Child(ren) Name(s) and Age(s): ______________________________________________________


Parent/Guardian: ___________________________________Phone ________________________

Emergency Contact:_________________________________ Phone ________________________

Total Enclosed (Checks to WSD):________________________________

Drop off forms and payment in envelope labeled “Fun Night” at ABS or WCS main office by end of school on Wednesday March 25th for pre-registration discount.

“Caw”ling Class of 2019 Redhawks!

Join us for a Spring Social

Who: All Incoming CVU 9th Graders

What: Dance for CVU Class of 2019

When: Friday, March 20th, from 6:45 PM to 9:15 PM

Where: CVU Cafeteria

Why: Meet your peers from Shelburne, Charlotte and Hinesburg and support the England/Ireland/Wales trip scholarship fund.

Cost: $8 Admission

Snacks and drinks will also be available for purchase.

Questions? Please contact Michelle Fongemie at

Part 2 After School, Summer & Vacation Camp Programs

A state-licensed child care program that provides a safe, engaging, and fun environment. Snacks, games, art, free choice, and clubs that link reading, writing, math, inquiry, problem solving with social & emotional components.

Audubon Spring Peepers: Naturalist Enrichment Program


Tuesdays After School

Dates: March 24 - April 17 (4 weeks)

Days: Tuesdays after school

Time: 2:35 - 4:00

Cost: $50

click here for the complete flyer

click here for the registration form

Sawmill Studio for grades 3-6


Do you like to build things? Want to make something out of wood? Come try your hand at woodworking! This class will teach students the basics of building projects out of wood with hand tools. There are no power tools in this class. Students first learn how to make a toolbox and then move on to create a variety of other great projects. No experience is necessary.

Open to all WCS students – 3rd-6th grade

THURSDAYS after school; 3:00 – 4:30

Five Classes: April 30, May 7, 14, 21, 28

Grades: 3rd – 6th grade

Cost: $120

Sign up: Contact: Lorien Leyden

Click here for poster for Sawmill Studio

Click here for registration form

8th Grade Challenge - Kid's Night Out

My name is Olivia Werner. For my 8th Grade Challenge I am working with a non-profit organization called Unbound Grace, located in Starksboro. Unbound Grace supports all youth. It is a working farm that is based on horseback riding. It gives kids an outlet that they can look forward to and gain self confidence and discipline from. To raise money for Unbound Grace I am hosting a Kid's Night Out on Friday April 10th from 6-8:30 at Green Mountain Gymnastics in Williston located on Avenue D. The cost is $12 per person. Ages 7 and up are welcome. Parents are allowed to stay and learn more about Unbound Grace and supporting our youth.

March is Math Month in the Williston School District!

Here’s what we’re planning….

Coffee with the Coordinator

  • These events are for parents… do you have a question you’ve been meaning to ask about how to teach a math concept to your child or how SBAC is going to work? Now’s your chance! Stop by during the times and dates listed below and chat with Caitlin Bianchi, WSD Math Coordinator.

  • ABS on Fri., March 20 from 8:00 – 9:00 am in the ABS Library

  • WCS on Weds., March 25 from 8:00 – 9:00 am in the WCS Dining Room

Race Registration is officially open!

5K Run/Walk and Kids Fun Run

Saturday May 16, 2015, Williston Central School

Register on-line at or pick-up your registration form at the Williston Central or Allen Brook School Front Offices.

Dust off your running shoes and start training! Run, Walk or Ride- Do it on your own or with some friends! You can even sign up and compete as a 3-Person Team!

However you choose to participate, you contribute to supporting educational opportunities for all our kids. See you there!

Visit our website

For more information please contact Sue Scheer at

Kindergarten Registration

Pre-Registration for Fall 2015 has begun for Williston and St. George children who will be 5 years old by September 1, 2015. Registration, which is scheduled for April 6-9. Click here to access the form to enter your information. Directions to select an appointment time will be provided after pre-registering. More information is on the school website.

Lucky U!

Would your student like the chance to win a rocket launch with Mr. Dippel or pizza with the principal? How about lunch and milkshakes with Ms. Tatlock or a sail on Lake Champlain with Ms. Crowley?

Williston FAP is excited to announce the start of a new program this year titled, “Lucky U”! Students will have the opportunity to enter individual raffles for a chance to win a special activity or experience with staff from both buildings to help raise money for FAP grants, field trips, etc. We have over 40 opportunities between ABS and WCS!

  • Tickets will be sold during lunch March 16 – 19
  • Drawing the 19th and winners posted March 20th

Each student will get one free ticket and additional tickets will be sold for 25 cents each (suggest limit of $5). During the week of March 16-19 students at ABS can purchase tickets in the library between 7:45am and 8:30am and at WCS during lunches. The winners will be chosen on Friday the 20th.

Contact Tara Weegar or FAP with questions or

Health Office

Northern New England Poison Center
Name Your Poison - March 2015

National Poison Prevention Week, March 15-21

National Poison Prevention Week starts Monday! Are you prepared for a poison emergency? Save the poison center phone number, 1-800-222-1222, in your cell phone today. The number works nationwide.

For more information on poisons and prevention, visit our A-Z Poison Index or download materials from our website.

Have you taken poison safety steps at home?

Nearly 9 out of 10 calls to the NNEPC are about possible poisonings that happened at home. Fortunately, there are some steps you can take to help prevent poisonings and make your home safer for children, pets and yourself. Learn more.

Medication Errors Common for Children

According to recent study, a child under 6 gets the wrong dose or the wrong medication every 8 minutes in the United States.

Read about some common ways these errors happen, and what steps you can take to prevent them.

NPPW on Facebook

Like us to get poison prevention tips and poison-related articles throughout Poison Prevention Week--and all-year round!

Do you have a poison question or emergency?

Remember that the poison center is here 24/7 to provide fast information and expert advice. Call us at 1-800-222-1222 or visit to chat with a poison specialist online.

Health Office Links

WCS: 871-6170, 871-6171 / Lisa LePrevost, RN, Carol Albertelli, RN / ABS: 871-6248 / Sylvia Love, RN

Lost Item

Soccer team shorts lost in WCS. They are green Nike shorts with #21 on them. Please call 318-5974 if located.

Athletics link

Williston School District Physical Education Department

Upcoming Events

March Concerts / Wed. March 18 / 7 pm / WCS Auditorium

Coffee with the Math Coordinator / Fri. March 20 / 8-9 am / ABS Library

Ski/Ride Mountain Trip / Fri. March 20

Donations Due for Team Baskets / Fri. March 20

CVU Social for 8th graders / Fri. March 20 / 6:45 -9:15 pm / CVU Cafeteria

Voyager Recycle Sale / Sat. March 21 / 9 am - 2 pm /

NO SCHOOL - Monday, March 23 (Parent/Teacher conferences)

Coffee with the Math Coordinator / Wed. March 25 / 8-9 am / WCS Dining Rm.

Jump Rope for Heart / Fri. March 27 / 8:45-11:15 am / ABS

Big Basket Raffle/Fun Night / Sat. March 28 / 6 - 8:30 pm / WCS

Intergen Meeting / Wed. April 1 / 11:35 am-1:10 PM /DAML

Dialogue Night / Wed. April 1 / 6-7:45 pm / WCS Dining Room

School Dance / Fri. April 3 /6:30-8:30 pm /WCS
Click here for athletics

More Upcoming Events on the School Web Calendar

Check out upcoming school events and dates on the School website Calendar!

Recreation & Parks Dept. Program Information

Dorothy Alling Memorial Library Programs for Kids

Click here to access the DAML web site listing of events.
Click here for the Bell listing of DAML events scheduled for children.

Click here for the DAML newsletters.

Williston School District

Allen Brook School and Williston Central School