School Newsletter

Quarters III/IV - Spring 2020


Prior to John becoming Superintendent of Schools for the Barre Unified Union School District, he served for three years as the Director of Curriculum, Instrution, and Assessment.

John has left an indelible mark on this community not only for his leadership, but also as a Mathematics Teacher.

He taught Advancement Placement: Calculus & Statistics and he served as an AP Exam Reader, along with being the Mathematics Departement Head for not only Spaulding High School, but U-32 in East Montpelier.

According to Paul Malone, "I have known John for over tweny years, first as an exceptional teacher and AP Calculus Instructor, later as the BSU Curriculum Director, and finally as the Superintendent of Schools.

In the classroom, John displayed an invaluable talent in guiding students to break through learning barriers to achieve extraordinary success. As an administrator, he has held himself to the highest measure of ethical and professional conduct setting a standard of excellence for the administrative staff throughout our school system.

During these years, John has earned the admiration of both students and faculty members in his unwavering commitment to excellence in education. His keen intellect, generous spirit and warm smile will be sorely missed.

We are all deeply grateful for John's years of dedication and service to our school community."




Under the Limelight

Our performers show creativity on and off the stage as they take on Manhattan.

Inspired by the "Great White Way," Drama Club and Chorus students with various talents yet same goals came together for a whirlwind weekend adventure during Quarter III.

For these students, they really understand how much grueling time and effort goes into each moment of a student production; the constant repeating of lines that burns into their brain to the amount of stage direction and prep.

But they are not deterred and they thrive to further craft their skills in acting, musical theater, improvisation, and vocal training. The solution - participating in a energetic musical theater workshop with Sean Montgomery from Beetlejuice.

For others, the sounds and sights of the city... from Rockfeller Center, Radio City Hall, and walking the streets of Manhattan were factors that fueled their creative juices and their dreams to be on Broadway.


Our: Life, School, and Story from Your Captain, Jim Ferland

2020 is a year none of us will soon forget.

As the Coronavirus overtook the country, the state decided to close schools on March 18, 2020, with an announced return date of April 6, 2020. As the situation grew worse, that date became just that, a date.

Less than ten days later. the governor announced that Vermont schools would be

closing for the remainder of the school year on March 26, 2020. With that began the “new normal” of remote learning for all students and their families and for all schools.

The closing of schools brought more to our school community than a change in academic policy. Among the casualties were spring sports, the spring musical, the art show, spring concerts, the prom and, most importantly for seniors, graduation. As of this writing, all gone, or, at best, in doubt. Not to mention all the memories and opportunities that accompany them.

More than that, it took away the everyday moments that truly make a school a community. That defines us.

At Spaulding we talk about Tide Pride and what that looks like and means to us, as individuals and as a whole. In the midst of the shutdown, I sponsored an essay contest in which I asked students: What does Tide Pride mean to you? Their words say far more than I can...

I learned what Tide Pride meant to me. It meant community and family. It meant students helping each other out no matter what. See for example, the food they are giving for students in need all over Barre. This kind of love and sense of community isn't seen anywhere else I have been.

The amount of work being exhibited by our staff behind the scenes is astounding, and I encourage anyone to thank any one of them you may pass in the hallways. Every single one that I've spoken to on the topic of their job, says they are proud to be here, too.

Tide Pride means a strong community, and the amount of overwhelming support that students are given helps shape that community.

Spaulding is a school where people accept you the way you come. You are accepted as

you are, different and unique. That is Tide Pride, pride in our school, and community, despite the difference and the struggles.

To me, Tide Pride is about comraderie, community, and bringing people together. It’s about cheering on your classmates and lifting spirits. Tide Pride has brought us all together numerous times.

Tide Pride is the foundation of Spaulding High School. It’s what keeps our building

functioning and running in the unique way that it does. Tide Pride is a lot like faith, you either have it or you don’t. It’s taking time to support Spaulding’s integrity and believing that its good name is a direct reflection upon yourself.

Tide Pride is family. Family are the people who push you to do your best. They push you to face your fears. To rise above the drama, to forgive the people who might not deserve it. Family pushes you to be the best you. Tide Pride is family.

Tide Pride is a community built for all of us to lean on, especially at a time like this. I just wish I had recognized this sooner, so I could’ve leaned into it more during my rougher moments. But I’m grateful I have it now, and to be able to show it to my sister during her freshman year. She will have this community for her whole school career, and use it more than I did. Tide Pride means we’re all in this together. No matter what.

I cry when I read these words. I cry at the moments and memories that have been taken away from all of us. I cry at missing not seeing everyone everyday. All the things we take for granted.

Mostly I cry when I read the words from our students, OUR students, who get it! They get what Tide Pride is and what it represents. I always say that the highest compliment I can give a fellow educator is very simple. I tell them, you get it. For this message, let me amend this to include all of Tide Nation...

That's the Spirit

Rather than an upbeat musical rendition from Twenty One Pilots invading the halls of Spaulding High School, quotes now dance eloquently along the walls.

In their spare time, Seniors: Kai Morse & Courtney Silk, Sophomore, Isabelle Wightman, and fellow Freshmen: Lillian Beun, Maggie Duprey, Aliyah Elliott, Riley Gavin, & Claire Isabelle found themselves contemplating words and phrases for the Quote Project this past semester.

Mrs. Margo Austin, Community Service Learning Coordinator, refers to the group as the School Beautification Masters because of the amount of detail, ingenuity, and patience the masters possessed as they crafted the art of application, especially over February break.

Even though they were present in the building over vacation, some of the masters found their artistic minds willing their stresses away and taking a reprieve from academic realities by doing something fun and good for the school.

Mrs. Austin noted their energy was poetic in nature as they learned how to cut vinyl letters and work collaboratively.

They were very mindful of the location of each quote and even the font. But what was most imprinted upon Mrs. Austin's and the masters' minds was that they had left a personal stamp on school.

She credits the work at her previous school and how the Quote Project was not only a beautification project, but an empowering way for students to have a voice and inspire others around them.

This is clearly evident when you roam the hallways of Spaulding now.


Spaulding High School is the first girls team in Vermont history to end their season with a perfect record.

Cami Bell's, Class of 2023 hat trick on February 26th against Missisquoi caused a seismic wave throughout the state.

For the girls, it was just the beginning as they entered into the playoffs with 19 wins and concluded with a perfect record with 22 wins.

However, the girls credit grit, resiliency, and team work by overcoming adversity and having mental toughness.

As Morgan Mast, Class of 2020 noted, "we had a few close games... between being down a goal or having to go overtime, we had to push through it."

Her teammates are in agreement and even their coach, Dave Lawrence who is an alum of Spaulding High School and played hockey.

He knows too well the amount of mental and physical energy it requires an athlete to prepare for a high stakes playoff game. Because like the girls, he experienced a Division I Championship during his high school career and his team worked hard for it.

Clearly, the team worked so hard that they landed themselves at the Gut and walked away with the trophy; inspiring others to work hard and play as a team.

Morgan credits team culture and maintaining a positive attitude are two factors that will keep any team afloat.


Authentic, all-natural, handmade charcuterie

Are not only 3 words that best describe Vermont Salumi's products, but also the founder, Pete Colman.

Pete hails from U32 and was a graduate of the Barre Technical Center's Culinary Program in 1998.

But more importantly, he was raised in the Green Mountains on Cate Farm and he has direct family ties to Italy, so his approach to producing an array of delectable sausage and pork products is incredibly authentic.

He notes his humble beginnings working from his basement to raising and caring for his pigs to selling his products at farmer's markets and now exporting his goods to big cities like Manhattan.

And he credits hard work, being invested, and overcoming challenges that fostered his success and even helping him learn about managing food safety in accordance of Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point (HACCP).

"It's like a marriage, there's give and take" and as of now, he's pretty invested in Barre, especially the old Homer Fitts building.

Like his Smoked Paprika salami, his response was robust on why the Homer Fitts building and Barre with its Italian American heritage as becoming his work home.

"The proximity to my house, the space and location, and the community." The square footage was incredibly attractive to him and when renovating the space, he found falling in love with the process of bringing form and function together.

"Yes," the space had been neglected, but in his eyes it was and still is beautiful.

For many Central Vermonters they are in agreement and it illicits so many memories and Pete gets that.

So much so, he welcomed the idea of Honoring the Past, Celebrating the Future display to be installed in his space with Barre & Spaulding High School memorabilia in honor of the Seniors who are graduating this June.

He offered some advice for those who are now navigating the TIDE after high school. "Travel like I did by going to Utah, work hard, and persevere. Don't be afraid of challenges that come your way."

And we are in agreement and welcome Pete and his colleagues to our community!

To learn more about Vermont Salumi, click on this link and pop by your local grocery store to enjoy his delectable treats.


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First Priority & Beyond

The spirit of Tide Pride is always present whether it be in a classroom, during an athletic competition, school functions, or among the alumni and community members who continue to invest in our school.

According to alumnus Dave Lacroix, Class of 1973, the Spaulding High School Scholarship Trust was created in 2015 due to the sizable contributions over the years. In 2018, the endowment nearly totaled 5.5 million dollars and it has continued to recognize academic achievement and support graduating Seniors beyond their time at Spaulding High School.

Even though Mr. John Lewis, In House Scholarship Committee Chair & Department Head of History & Social Sciences is not an alum of Spaulding High School, he has been an active and well respected faculty member within our district; serving over 35 years.

Thus he is very cognizant of the challenges that face Seniors as they grapple with their post secondary options and rising costs of education.

In particular, he appreciates how diverse each scholarship is and how it honors student achievement whether it be merit based, need based, career specific or non specific in nature, depending upon the terms of the gift.

"I am grateful for the generosity of so many donors and their love of the Barre community," an example of this is the Dr. Ernest V. Reynolds Memorial Scholarship.

Ernest V. Reynolds, M.D., was a beloved and respected Barre physician for 52 years. After graduating from Spaulding in 1926, Dr. Reynolds received a $500 scholarship to Williams College. While an undergraduate student he was involved in sports and sang in the glee club.

Because of his need to work at various jobs during his years at Williams, Dr. Reynolds understood how difficult it can be to pay for a college education.

This resonates with Mr. Lewis as he reads In House Scholarship Essays that were submitted by Senior applicants, especially this year.

According to Mr. Lewis, "... reading their essays gives me a deeper picture about their situation, their challenges, and their wishes."

He also noted how careful his committee is to adhering to the criteria of each scholarship and the Scholarship Trust's mission. He credited newly staff member from the School Counseling Office, Miss Anna Ryan, as being instrumental in the In House Scholarship application process and navigating the process during COVID-19.

However, on behalf of our community, we would also like to express our gratitude for Mr. Lewis investing in Spaulding High School and congratulate him on his retirement.

Class of 2020 Recipients

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