The Gilbert School E-News

December 2021

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Reflecting on 2021

Dear Parents/Guardians and Students,

With the close of 2021 only a few short weeks away, it's difficult to reflect on the last year without recognizing the challenges of raising and educating children during a pandemic. Younger children look forward to the time when they become teenagers and earn the privilege of participating in the normal rights of passage that middle school and high school both bring. Simple things, such as going to football games, basketball games, pep rallies, dances, concerts, prom, or just hanging out with friends in the cafeteria during lunch. However, for nearly the last two years, these events looked a bit different than what they grew up seeing in the movies and on television and it's hard not to imagine that there's probably a little bit of disappointment because of it. For the past three months, we've been slowly transitioning back to "normal" and it's been wonderful to see students participate in the many activities that make TGS such a special place and allow our students to make fond memories of their Gilbert experience.

Like you, our faculty and staff are committed to creating the most idyllic experience we can for your children. On behalf of The Gilbert School Faculty and Staff, I would like to wish you and your family a very happy holidays season. I, like you, share your thoughts and wishes for a very safe and healthy 2022!


Greg P. Shugrue

Head of School

Inclement Weather Communication

Dear Families and Staff,

With the winter season officially here, I want to provide you with information regarding our inclement weather procedures. The State Department of Education will not permit us to use remote instruction and therefore, any days missed for weather will need to be made up at the end of the school year.

I, along with other area superintendents, will participate in an early morning conference call with our weather consultant to discuss the weather situation and its impact on schools. Based on this information and the information that Superintendent Brady-Shanley gets from our local Public Works Department, the Town of Winchester Police Department, WPS Maintenance Department, and Litchfield County Dispatch a decision regarding school will be made. It is ultimately Superintendent Brady-Shanley’s charge to make the decision.

Once a decision has been made by Superintendent Brady-Shanley, I will immediately relay the information to all The Gilbert School’s faculty, staff, and students’ families by 6:00 AM via School Messenger, local news stations, local radio stations, and an alert will be posted on our website.

In addition to School Cancelations, The Gilbert School uses the following inclement weather scheduling options:

  1. Early Dismissal - 12:16 PM

  2. Late Opening

    1. 2 - Hour Delay - 9:45 AM start

    2. 3 - Hour Delay - 10:45 AM start

Lastly, to ensure clear and uninterrupted communication, it is vitally important to ensure that you have your phone numbers updated with Gilbert’s Main Office. If you have recently made any changes in your contact information, please call our Main Office at 860-379-8521 to update those changes.

For your information and convenience, the following is a list of both radio and television stations used to report any changes to our schedule due to inclement weather.


WZBG FM 97.3, WTIC 1080 AM


WFSB 3, NBC 30, FOX 61, WTNH 8

Should you have any questions about our procedures, please feel free to call me at 860-379-8521.


Greg P. Shugrue

Head of School

Wingman Program Comes to TGS

We are excited to announce that on 10/14 The Gilbert School Administration introduced the Wingman program to our student body through presentations by Ian Hockley, Executive Director of Dylan’s Wings of Change. The program, which utilizes students as leaders, helps students realize the connections that exist between peers, but also develops social and emotional skills through team bonding and trust-building activities. In the weeks following the introduction assemblies, students were given the opportunity to sign up for consideration to become Wingman Student Leader. In addition to the students filling out applications, the staff at TGS also selected students that they felt could help lead this movement. Students participated in 2 days of training in November. Now that the students are trained we will be working with the students to plan our launch that will happen in January. Starting in January and continuing monthly, TGS will be rolling out various Wingman student-led activities throughout the year to achieve the primary goal of improving school climate and culture, as well as to inspire our students to be more empathetic, courageous and inclusive, in an effort to create a school community that is a welcoming place for everyone.

Important Changes To Drop Off & Pick Up Locations For Grades 10-12

In an effort to reduce congestion and traffic jams in the parking lot during both drop-off and pick-up starting, Monday, December 13th we will be instituting new drop-off and pick-up procedures.

For parents and guardians dropping off and picking up students in grades 7-9 continue using the faculty lot. See picture. That being said, I would like to make a few reminders. First, in an effort to keep the lines moving please be sure to pull up as far as you can. Second, students should be ready to disembark. Please have your items ready and exit the vehicle quickly. Third, If all traffic has pulled up as far as it can, it is encouraged that students exit the vehicle and walk on the sidewalk to the front door. The student does not need to wait to be directly in front of the front door. Lastly, please be mindful that school starts at 7:45. Students arriving at school after 7:45 are tardy.

For parents and guardians dropping off and picking up students in grades 10-12, we will use the bus loop. To gain access to the bus loop simply turn right at the end of Williams ave. There will be signage indicating this. See picture. That being said, I would like to make a few reminders. First, in an effort to keep the lines moving please be sure to pull up as far as you can. Second, students should be ready to disembark. Please have your items ready and exit the vehicle quickly. Third, if all traffic has pulled up as far as it can, it is encouraged that students exit the vehicle and walk on the sidewalk to the front door. The student does not need to wait to be directly in front of the front door. Lastly, please be mindful that school starts at 7:45. Students arriving at school after 7:45 are tardy.

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Student Council Announces Holiday Spirit Week

Break out the tinsel and your best holiday garb, Student Council invites students, faculty and staff to get their holiday spirit on! Beginning Monday, 12/20, close out the year in style celebrating each day's theme:

Monday December 20: *Merry morning Monday (pjs; onesies, flannel pants) OR holiday colors

Tuesday December 21: Holiday socks and hats

Wednesday December 22: Holiday character day

Thursday December 23: Holiday sweater day!!

In the spirit of the season, holiday sweaters are encouraged/welcomed ALL WEEK LONG!

Middle School Awards

Each quarter middle school students come together with their teachers to celebrate student successes and accomplishments. Awards are given out to students who show improvement, great aptitude, success, or just a positive attitude toward their learning. Each quarter students are chosen by their teachers for these awards and celebrated in a Town Hall Meeting. Congratulations to the following students:

8th Grade First Quarter Awards

  • Academic Achievement Award - Jacob Ludwig
  • Band Award - Alec Marvin
  • Business Award - Racheal Raydenbow
  • Chorus Award - Elizabeth Salmon
  • Computer Information Systems Award - McKenzie Valentine
  • English Award - Avianna Wrzesinski
  • General Music Award - Ethan Cavajani
  • Language Arts Award - Hailey Pedersen
  • Latin I Award - Keegan Connolly
  • Math Award - Emily Perry
  • Science Award - Ethan Sholtis
  • Social Studies Award - Shiloh Correa
  • Spanish I Award - Stella Boucino
  • Technology Education Award - Kylee Quach
  • Wellness Award - Christina Harrington

7th Grade First Quarter Awards

  • Academic Achievement Award - Mchael Vancini
  • Art Award - Jabetty Javier
  • Band Award - Riker Napoleone
  • Chorus Award - Freily Cruz
  • English Award - Mason Pierce
  • Exploratory Latin Award - Vincent Servantes
  • Exploratory Spanish Award - Amaris Reinoso
  • General Music Award - Clover Gangi
  • Language Arts Award - Ava Woronick
  • Math Award - Braedin Bresson
  • Science Award - Deanna Juliano
  • Social Studies Award - Sofia Fecto
  • Technology Award - Gage Sokol
  • Wellness Award - Michael Weston

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Thanksgiving 2021

As you all know, The Gilbert School has a lot of wonderful traditions that make this school such an amazing place to call home. Each year it has been a tradition at Gilbert to take care of the families who could benefit from some assistance during the holidays. During Thanksgiving there has been a long history of providing a full Thanksgiving Meal that consists of a 16lb turkey, bag of potatoes, box of stuffing, can of gravy, 4 cans of vegetables, 1 can of cranberry sauce, and a pie. This year, Gilbert was able to provide approximately 58 families with this meal! This is all made possible from monetary contributions from the Gilbert School faculty and staff. In addition, we have developed a wonderful community partner with BigY who helps to offset the cost of the meals. A special thanks goes to Jim Martin (Torrington BigY store manager) for ordering, assembling, and helping offset the cost to make it all possible.

In addition to taking a monetary donation, it has also been a tradition for Gilbert employees to deliver the Thanksgiving meals to the families.

Don Crossman

Department Chair

Mrs. Wood Named Fenway Bowl Honor Roll Recipient For 2021

The Gilbert School is proud and excited to announce that our very own Mrs. Katherine (Katie) Wood has been chosen as one of this year's recipients of the Fenway Bowl Honor Roll. The Fenway Bowl Honor Roll recognizes hard-working educators who go above and beyond and make positive contributions to their school. Mrs. Wood was chosen by a committee of representatives from the Fenway Bowl who reviewed nominations of impactful educators from all over New England.

The Fenway Bowl is a postseason college football bowl game played at historic Fenway Park on December 29, 2021, with teams representing the Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) and the American Athletic Conference (AAC). In addition to the game, the Fenway Bowl recognizes and celebrates educators from New England that are making impactful contributions to their schools.

Congratulations to Mrs. Wood!

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7th Grade Highlights

By Tina Keegan, Middle School Language Arts Teacher

Here is what’s been happening in seventh grade at The Gilbert Middle School!

MATH: Math 7 students are smoothly making the transition into proportional relationships after learning about scales and scale factors. After having completed the Candy Bar Enlargement project at the end of the scale drawing unit, they are now learning to transform that concept into an equation form of y=kx, as a preparation for learning about the slope of a line.

Pre-Algebra students are now working on scales and dilations and will create a blueprint of a place of their choice as the quarter two project. Then they will move onto writing and solving problems using the form px + q = r and p (x+q) = r.

Parents may access the family website for Illustrative Math to get a synopsis of what the students are learning in class and obtain resources for support from home. Please use the links below:

ENGLISH: For the quarter two book project, students are creating a time capsule about a book they chose that is historical fiction. Students have created a container and added character cards. Each week, they will complete another part of the project. The completed time capsules will be shared in January.

In class, students have learned about Victorian England in preparation for reading Charles Dickens' A Christmas Carol, a play version as well as the original text. Students each have a copy of the book. You are encouraged to enjoy this book with your child at home.
SCIENCE: In science, students have figured out what is in a bath bomb that makes it behave the way it does. Throughout this unit, students completed many different experiments to identify the key ingredients and determine which substances are needed to create the chemical reaction that is seen when the bath bomb interacts with water. As we finish our chemical reactions unit, we will begin to look at cells and how they interact with each other.

SOCIAL STUDIES: Just completed: Each class has learned the difference between a primary source and a secondary source and how to recognize which type of sources are primary and which are secondary. Up next: Introduction to latitude and longitude. In this unit, students will be able to define latitude and longitude and plot locations on a map using coordinates. Also, students will be able to locate and name important latitude and longitude lines on a map or globe.

LANGUAGE ARTS: Keep the wheels turning! As the colder temperatures set in, students will warm up with their study of root words, prefixes, and suffixes. This will help Language Arts students increase their vocabulary and gain more confidence in reading more complex texts. We will also focus on displaying learning in more unique and creative ways. It is time to think outside the box!

Mrs. Hurley, Associate Principal: As we enter fully into the second quarter of the year I would like to remind Parents and Guardians to check PowerSchool for grades. Only looking at Google Classroom does not give a full picture. Google Classroom may show something was turned in. However, some students will hit the submit button on a blank assignment making it look like the work is complete, when in fact it is not. I hope everyone has a healthy and happy holiday season and is able to enjoy time with family and friends. As always, if you have any questions or concerns, contact us here at TGS - 860-379-8521.
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“May you never be too grown up to search the skies on Christmas Eve”

- Unknown

It’s a GREAT day to be a Yellowjacket!

By Buckley Morgan, Gilbert Director of Athletics

After a very exciting Thanksgiving Football game against Granby (21-0) here at the Gilbert Campus - and a filling Thanksgiving dinner surrounded by friends and family - we look back on our Fall sports season, and forward to the coming December holidays and Winter Athletics. While GNH football has made it into the postseason, the rest of Gilbert athletics did not. Making it into the postseason is not what defines an athlete. I believe we have some of the best student-athletes and coaches in the league. We have great sportsmanship, dedication, never-quit attitude, love of the game, and an understanding and willingness to play the long game. On two occasions this fall, I received phone calls from Principals and Athletic Directors letting me know how exceptionally well our athletes conducted themselves while at their school. This is a rare phone call. Usually a principal calls to discuss issues or concerns. It speaks volumes for a principal to take the time and call to discuss how outstanding your athletes are in sportsmanship and behavior while competing at their school. This definitely is a result of quality coaching and a sound perspective on how sports fit into our lives.

TGS Fall Athletics Awards Ceremony & Fall Season Wrap-Up

TGS held our Fall Athletics Awards Ceremony on November 18. Three teams were recognized as recipients of the Ted Alex award for the Fall season. Congratulations go out to the Boys Soccer team, Boys Cross Country team and the girls Volleyball team. The winner of the Ted Alex award is determined through a voting process taking input from all Fall Berkshire League players and coaches of the same sport. The parameters of the award are sportsmanship of coaches, players and fans. Emily Arel and Alina Gutic, both on the girls soccer team, and Cross Country team member Thomas Reeves were recognized All Berkshire League Honors. Emily also made a Gilbert Girls Soccer record breaking seventeen goals this season. Congratulations to these three fine athletes, and all the Gilbert student-athletes on a successful Fall season.

I would like to take a moment to congratulate our Fall athletics season Scholar Athlete winners who were also honored at the event. To qualify as a Scholar Athlete the student must be a Varsity athlete who received the Honors or High Honors distinction for academics during the season. We had 51 Varsity athletes and 77% of them earned the Scholar Athlete award. These numbers do not include football or cheer, as their season is still going. This is an amazing accomplishment by so many student-athletes. Please take a moment and congratulate them when you see them.

The GNH Football program has had a good season, although not without Covid having its impact. In spite of two games being declared no contest due to Covid cancelations, and after a dramatic Thanksgiving win over Granby (21-0), GNH football made it into the playoffs with a season of 7-2 (6-2 for points). The last time the football program made it into the playoffs was 2013. Great job by all, student-athletes, coaches and all those others who worked behind the scenes to make each game a success. GNH will play in the quarterfinals against Killingly on November 30th.

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TGS Fall Athletics Awards Ceremony Recipents

Photo credit: Deb Lewis

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Winter Athletics

We now look forward to the Winter athletics season with Girls Basketball and Wrestling already practicing, and Boys Basketball practice beginning on December 2. Winter Cheer is also ramping up for the season. Middle School will start their season soon. For questions about Middle school athletics please contact the MS Athletic Director, Mr. Penn at

Winter mask and social distance requirements have been finalized between CIAC and the DPH. Of course, the potential for change is always there should conditions warrant it. All spectators, workers, coaching staff and student-athletes not actively participating are expected to wear a mask when indoors. Basketball players, wrestlers and runners who are vaccinated will be allowed to go without a mask while they are actively participating on the court, mat or track during a contest. Those who are not vaccinated will wear a mask at all times during contests. The only exception to this rule is for wrestlers. For safety reasons, wrestlers will not wear a mask while grappling regardless of vaccination status. For more information, the winter Covid policy is available on the CIAC website.

Winter Sports Registration

Registration for Winter sports is open in Family ID. Click here to register for high school or middle school winter sports. Winter registration will be closing on December 4.

Athletic Updates

For Gilbert specific athletic updates, navigate to and follow or like the Athletic Department Facebook page or visit the Gilbert Athletics webpage. You will find the athletics handbook on the website. All athletes should know it, front to back.


Contact the Gilbert Director of Athletics at

or call 860 379-3721. The Middle School Athletic Director is Josh Penn, contact him for middle school athletics questions at

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Grades 8-11 Students: PSAT Results

Now available: PSAT results from testing that took place in school on October 13 for all grade 8, freshmen, sophomore, and junior students. Click on the button below to learn how to access your scores!

Free FAFSA Workshop For CT Residents On 12/6

PRESS RELEASE: Virtual & In-Person FAFSA Days for the Class of 2022

In partnership with the Connecticut State Department of Education, the College Board, New Haven Promise, the Connecticut Association of Financial Aid Administrators (CAPFAA), the Connecticut Conference of Independent Colleges, the Connecticut State Colleges & Universities, and UConn are joining forces to host a series of FAFSA workshops for the Class of 2022.

Financial aid professionals will be online to help students and families navigate the process of need-based federal aid. Those who sign up will receive a checklist of items that they will need and support to successfully complete the process. Click on the button for more info and to register for their event on 12/6.

SENIORS & PARENTS: College Application Deadlines Are Approaching

Attention Senior Parents, college application deadlines are fast approaching! The High School Counseling office has been very busy meeting with our Seniors who are applying to colleges for fall 2022.

  • Students should be working on their applications and their FAFSA and be ready to apply by their colleges' published deadlines.
  • Be sure to list each college on the FAFSA. Not including a college/university you're applying to can delay the Financial Aid Package from that school.
  • Counselors are here to support students and parents through the process. We welcome your questions!

GRADES 9-11: SAT & ACT Test Dates

In spring 2022, all junior students will be participating in the Connecticut SAT School Day here at The Gilbert School (date to be announced). However, any student (not just juniors!) can register online to take the SAT and/or to take the ACT throughout the year - as many times as you choose. Additional testing dates are listed below. Like anything else, the more you practice, the better you'll get!

*Please note that The Gilbert School is no longer a testing site and will not be hosting SAT testing on alternate dates.


Khan Academy, in conjunction with College Board, is offering free customized SAT prep based on a student's performance on the PSAT. Generated SAT practice is tailored specifically to focus on those areas in which the student requires the most practice. Click on the button below to find out more information!

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The International Program Celebrates their High Honor Students

On Wednesday, November 17, the international students of the W. L. Gilbert Trust, shared an evening together at the Residency Hall celebrating the birthdays of the quarter and also the first quarter honor reports. Students were presented with High Honors certificates by Dean of Admissions, Debra LaRoche Walls.

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From left to right: Alan Wan, 12th grader, Iven Cai, 12th grader, Kyle He, 12th grader, Richard Sebastian, 10th grader, Frank Guan, 12th grader, Kristofer Zhang, 12th grader and missing is Andrew Park, 10th grader.

Following the recognition of the honors students and the birthday announcements, the students celebrated enjoying a variety of cakes and refreshments together.

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News From The TGS Health Office

By Kelli Gilbert RN BSN, Director of Health Services

COVID Quarantine Updates

Screen and Stay is a new initiative from the Department of Public Health that schools may choose to participate in.

  1. Eligibility for Screen and Stay is dependent on very specific parameters and each contact tracing scenario must be determined on a case by case basis.
  2. This eligibility to opt into the screen and stay protocol will only be provided if all parameters are met.
  3. Screen and Stay does not mean that ALL students will be able to remain in school if they come in contact with a positive Covid exposure. Students must meet the criteria to be eligible through the Screen and Stay option. If students meet the criteria, it will allow more students to remain in their academic classes.

In the event a student is identified as a direct contact to someone with COVID at school, the school nurses will notify parents if their child is eligible for the Screen and Stay option.

Important Highlights of the Screen and Stay Program

  1. Eligibility to opt into Screen and Stay is dependent on specific situations. All scenarios will be treated on a case by case basis.

  2. Students who are eligible and opt into the Screen and Stay program when contact traced must:

  • Have a signed attestation form by a parent/guardian before returning to school

  • Self-Monitor for any symptoms for a full 14 days from the exposure date

  • Students in the Screen and Stay program may not take part in any extracurricular activities (ex. dances, after school athletics, etc)

  • Remain asymptomatic while in school. If symptoms arise, they must notify the school nurse immediately.

3. Will be strongly encouraged to test on days 5-7 to receive a negative test.

Winter is Here!! Need Help with a Winter Coat?

Do you need a winter coat for your child? We can help! Email Kelli Gilbert at or call 860 379 8521 and let us know your child’s name and size. Gloves are also available in the nurse’s office for any student who needs a pair.

Sports Physicals

Sports Physicals are current within 13 months. Your child needs to have a current physical on file in the nursing office.

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COVID Vaccination

The CDC has now approved COVID vaccination for children ages 5-11 years old. Need help finding a vaccination clinic? Some pediatricians are vaccinating children in their offices so check with them first. If you can’t get an appointment there, try these tips…

Find a COVID-19 Vaccine

  • Search

  • Text Your Zip Code to 438829

  • Call 1-800-232-0233

  • Check Your Local Pharmacy’s Website

  • Check With Your Local or State Health Department for Vaccine Clinic Locations

  • Enter Your Location into, Where You Can Filter by Distance and Network

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Order Your TGS Yearbook At Reduced Pricing Until 1/1

2022 High School Yearbooks are on sale now for $75! Yearbook pricing will increase to $85 on January 1. To order High School Yearbooks visit and enter Gilbert as the school name or contact Mrs. Wood at

Make-up Picture Day 12/9

Makeup pictures will be held Thursday, December 9. Anyone who missed picture day already has an appointment; anyone who would like a retake should contact Mrs. Wood for an appointment.

Substitutes Needed

Building Substitute:

Immediate opening for Building Substitute in grades 7-12 at The Gilbert School. The schedule follows the school calendar, 7:30 am – 2:30 pm. Interested parties should complete an application online at and submit a letter of intent, resume, and two (2) letters of reference. Please contact 860-379-8521 with questions.

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PowerSchool Registration Instructions

Unsure how to set up your PowerSchool account? No problem! Follow these simple steps:

  1. Begin at The Gilbert School Webpage
  2. From the Parent dropdown menu, choose PowerSchool
  3. Click on the PowerSchool logo
  4. Click the create an account button
  5. Completely fill out the form

(The Access ID is your child’s student ID number, and the Access password is the first 8 letters of your child’s last name.)


  • At least 7 characters
  • At least one uppercase and one lowercase letter
  • At least one number
  • At least one special character (!,$,&,*, etc.)

Should you need assistance, please contact

Important Dates to Remember

No School

12/24-12/31 - Holiday Recess

Activity Day


Early Dismissal

12/1-3 - Parent Conferences, all students dismiss at 12:16 pm

12/23 - Holiday Recess early release, all students dismiss at 12:16 pm

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