The Gilbert School E-News

February 2022

Wingman Kick Off Is 2/10

In October, 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.

Starting on 2/10, we will launch the first of our monthly student-led activities with 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. We look forward to hearing student feedback in the coming months!

All-School Musical: James And The Giant Peach

This spring, TGS will present the All-School Musical James and the Giant Peach. The short story by Roald Dahl (also known for Charlie and the Chocolate Factory) centers around James, a lonely British orphan, and his discovery of family and relationships through a journey in a Giant magical peach. The cast currently consists of 23 talented TGS students in grades 7-12.

Show dates:

Friday, April 8th at 7pm

Saturday April 9th at 2 and 7pm

Sunday April 10th at 2pm

Stay tuned for more details about this exciting upcoming production!

Gilbert School vs. Northwestern, 2/11

The upcoming cross-town rivalry basketball game against Northwestern is Friday, February 11th at Northwestern. Girls start at 4:30 and the Boys follow at 7. Be sure to wear your Blue and Gold and sit in the student section to cheer on our teams to victory! Be on the lookout for more info about fan section info and cheers in the coming days.
Big picture

Testing For Selected 8th Graders 2/17

On 2/17 selected Grade 8 students will participate in National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) testing at TGS. Frequently referred to as "The Nation's Report Card", NAEP testing is a measurement tool used to evaluate public and private school student achievement in mathematics, reading, science, and other subjects on a national level. This allows for comparisons between states and districts, in an effort to assess the overall academic progress of various student populations. Participating TGS students will receive further information regarding testing in the coming days. To learn more about NAEP, and how the results are used, please visit the National Center For Education Statistics website, or watch the video below.
The Nation's Report Card: A Lens Into Student Success Since 1969

Making Math Practical

By Maura Hurley

Mrs. Affie and Mrs. Godfrey brought math alive for their students on February 1st. They created a life size graph on the classroom floor for students to learn about slope.

Two students at a time took turns each tossing a bean bag onto the floor. The students had to identify the coordinates and record the data for each bean bag. They then took a string to draw a line between the two points. Students then determined what type of slope it was based on the new definitions they learned in class. The students will be using the data they collected to calculate the slope of each line using the Slope Formula. We are expanding their learning in fun ways.

Students were excited to engage in the activity. Steven Santiago stated, “it shows a good way to learn. It helps students participate and help one another easy and fun to understand. It brings out the side that wants to try.” Other staff and teachers even joined in on the fun. Mrs. Kutz explained, “I wish my teachers taught like this!” and Mrs. Godfrey reported, “We had so much fun planning this one together! We are actually really looking forward to building on this same activity next week as we introduce the concept of slope intercept with them. It was nice to have additional guests stopping by willing to participate as well! Thank you Jeanine (Affie) for making it such an amazing process!”

Way to go 8th grade math!

Big picture

“Be more concerned with your character than your reputation, because your character is what you really are, while your reputation is merely what others think you are.”

-John Wooden

It’s a GREAT day to be a Yellowjacket!

By Buckley Morgan, Gilbert Director of Athletics

It’s hard to believe January is already behind us. The snow on the ground makes it clear that winter is still here. This winter Gilbert teams are limited in numbers of athletes, but the talent on those teams is very good for having such a small number of players. At the time of this writing, the girls basketball team has a record of 9-2. Not too bad for a team without enough available players to play JV.

All of our teams have struggled with numbers this season. Not only are our teams small, but we often have several athletes out due to the pandemic. This has resulted in very few JV games being played in Basketball. CIAC rules dictate that all Varsity games must be played, if at all possible. At this point in time, it's unlikely that we will be able to make up all of our postponed JV games. However, we are talking about a possible tournament for JV girls on February 25 - more to come on that soon.

The Wrestling and Indoor Track teams have been practicing daily. Wrestling is doing a great job of developing skills and understanding the concepts of leverage and balance on the mats. Again, the team is very small and cannot compete in all 14 weight classes. Indoor Track has had a couple successful meets so far this season. They are in the hallways daily preparing for upcoming meets - and keeping departing faculty on their toes as they leave the building for the day.

Cheer has been practicing daily and doing a great job of cheering our teams to victory. They are participating in a few cheer contests this year, with their first one scheduled for February 12 at Thomaston High School. Many of us have had the privilege of seeing some of the cheer routine during our halftime shows. Good luck to them.

Spring sports will be starting around March 19th depending on the sport. Spring sports registration will open on February 20 and continue through March 18 on the Family ID website. Parents of student-athletes who plan to enroll in Spring sports, please mark your calendar for an orientation on March 8th at 5:00 pm here in the Gilbert auditorium. If you attended the Fall or Winter orientation then you do not need to attend the Spring orientation. However, you do need to attend team-specific meetings with the coaches.

Spring sports include: High School Boys and Girls tennis, Baseball, Softball, and Outdoor Track & Field. Baseball and Softball are offered for Middle School students. The Outdoor Track team has two meetings set for those interested to attend, March 2 and March 16 at 2:30 in the Health classroom. If you have any questions about a specific sport, or would like to touch base with the coach, feel free to email them at the email listed below.

For Gilbert athletic updates, navigate to and follow or like the TGS Athletics Page on Facebook.

We also recommend parents and student-athletes visit the Gilbert Athletics webpage where you will find the Athletics Handbook. 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, who can be contacted at:

Big picture

News From The Guidance Department

Second semester of senior year is off to a good start! We know many of our seniors have applied to colleges and universities; for those who have not, it’s not too late to make an appointment with your counselor and develop a great plan!

Important reminders for those college-bound seniors who have already applied to colleges:

  • Check your email frequently, colleges/universities may be contacting you!

  • Make sure you have set up your college portals, and that you are checking them frequently. This is how colleges will inform you if you are missing materials. They may also use the portal to give you an admissions decision.

  • Mid-year grades will soon be sent to all active applications (as indicated in Naviance). If any of your colleges have a deadline for receiving mid-year grades before February 15th, please let us know.

  • The deadline for submitting your FAFSA for financial aid consideration is FEBRUARY 15th for many colleges and universities. Make sure you have listed all of your colleges and have submitted your FAFSA by FEB 15th!

  • Sign up for Accepted Student Day, Visit Days, etc. These are important events to help make your admissions decisions.

  • If you need help making a decision on where you would like to attend, please let us know; we are happy to meet with you!

  • Once you make your decision on where you would like to attend, you need to pay an admissions deposit. The national deadline is May 1st. PLEASE NOTE: If you've been accepted as an Early Decision candidate, your deadline may be sooner than May 1st!

Course Selection For The 2022-23 School Year

Scheduling season has begun and we are busy preparing for course selection. In mid February, teachers will be making recommendations for student placement for 2022-2023.

In late February students will meet with the counselors to discuss the course selection process and review courses that are available for the 22-23 school year. The student portal will then open for course selection and will remain open through the end of March.

  • Students in grades 9-11 will meet with their counselors during advisory to select courses for the coming school year and enter their selections into the portal.

  • 8th grade students will meet with Mrs. Kutz to complete their course requests.

In April, courses will be finalized and student schedules will be developed. During the remainder of the school year students will finalize schedules with counselors and make any adjustments that are needed.

Junior Planning & Junior Parents Night

Starting mid-February, counselors will be working with juniors to further explore their career interests and opportunities available in trade schools and colleges, which will then inform course selection for next year. Junior year is particularly important for post-secondary planning and parents are encouraged to join their student in a planning meeting with their counselor.

Contact Diane Kirsch at 860-379-8521 in early March to schedule an appointment.

On March 30, 2022 at 6pm, counselors will host our Junior Planning Night in the Library to discuss post secondary options and the timelines associated with each option. All junior parents are encouraged to attend

Senior Scholarships

The Gilbert Trust Scholarship and the Locascio Scholarship applications are now open to our seniors. Each year, the Scholarship Committee awards Gilbert Trust Scholarship money to all seniors in good standing who apply on time. Seniors can also apply for the Locascio Scholarship, which awards one senior $40,000 to be dispersed over four years.

Counselors frequently email seniors and post scholarship application information to Naviance. Paper copies may also be available in the Guidance office. We encourage seniors to continue applying to local scholarships. Please make sure to apply for these by the following deadlines:

  • Greenwoods Scholarship - February 18th

  • Locascio Scholarship - March 7th

  • Gilbert Trust Scholarship - April 1st.

ASVAB Testing

The ASVAB (Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery) test has been rescheduled for April 1st at Gilbert. This is a free test that helps students discover their strengths and potential success in a variety of areas including military training. Students in grades 10 through 12 are eligible to take the exam. Students interested in taking the ASVAB should sign up in Guidance or email your counselor before March 18th.

Save The Date: School Day SAT Is 3/23

SAT testing for all junior students will be held in school on Wednesday, March 23. The TGS School Counseling deparment recommends that students use Khan Academy and College Board to get individualized test prep based on their PSAT scores (see below). Look for detailed information about SAT test day procedures in the March issue of the TGS e-News Blast.


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!

GRADES 9-11: SAT & ACT Test Dates

On March 23rd, all junior students will be participating in the SAT School Day here at The Gilbert School. 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.

FAFSA Workshops Continue

Still need assistance with your FAFSA? Sign up for an in-person or virtual FAFSA workshop, right here in Connecticut. You can also check out these great FAFSA resources for CT residents.

Big picture

Upcoming In-Person College Fair

Southern Connecticut College & Gap Year Fair

It's never too early to start exploring college options! Spring Recess is the perfect time to plan a college visit/tour. If you already have plans for the break, consider attending a college fair the week before. Fortunately, you won't have to go far to attend one of the largest in-person fairs in the area: the Southern Connecticut College & Gap Year Fair. The event will be held Tuesday, April 12 from 4 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. at the new outdoor Hartford HealthCare Amphitheater in Bridgeport, CT. Click here for more information.

Upcoming Virtual College Fairs

CONNect Virtual College Fairs

The Connecticut State Universities and UCONN are hosting two virtual chat-based College Fairs this spring semester on 2/16 and 5/3, from 6:30-8pm. The college fairs are free to all students and parents. Click on the image/flyer below to register.

NACAC Virtual College Fairs

Hundreds of colleges and universities from the US and worldwide will be ready and waiting to talk with you at the upcoming spring NACAC Virtual College Fairs listed below. Click on the image/flyer for more information.

Big picture

Chinese Lunar New Year 2022

By Debra LaRoche Walls

Tuesday, February 1, 2022, over a billion people in China and millions around the world will celebrate the Chinese New Year. The Lunar New Year or Spring Festival is the most important of Chinese holidays and is also celebrated by those from Korea, Vietnam, Laos, Singapore and many other Asian countries. From late January until the middle of February, the national holiday will be celebrated. It is a time to honor deities, ancestors and to be with family.

With a strong cultural and historic significance, this year also represents the year of the Tiger. Since ancient times, Chinese people have been using the Chinese Zodiac animals to represent the years. Each lunar year is related to a zodiac animal, beginning at Chinese New Year.

Those celebrating the New Year will enjoy traditional foods such as; fish, symbolizing prosperity, dumplings and spring rolls, symbolizing wealth, longevity noodles, symbolizing happiness and longevity, and good fortune fruit, for fullness and wealth. The celebration is also believed to be significant to ensure good fortune for the coming year and has many religious traditions and beliefs that hold value.

The International Program of The Gilbert School has traditionally celebrated with students from the program coming from China, Vietnam and South Korea in a variety of ways. This year, a dinner of traditional foods will be prepared and shared with the international students at the Residency Hall. Residential Coordinator, Cristina Rutherford will prepare traditional food dishes such as hot pot, dumplings and fresh fruit. The cultural tradition will be celebrated for a happy, healthy year ahead.

Happy New Year to all of Gilberts Asian students celebrating on February 1.

Big picture

News From The TGS Health Office

By Kelli Gilbert RN BSN, Director of Health Services

Free COVID Test Kits by Mail from the Government

Did you know that you can order free test kits from the government? There is a limit of one order per residential address. One order includes 4 rapid antigen COVID tests. Orders will ship starting at the end of January. Order here:

Sick student? Need a home COVID test kit?

Is your TGS student sick and exhibiting signs of COVID? Need a home antigen test kit? We can help! Contact TGS school nurses to get a home rapid COVID antigen testing kit.

Big picture

What happens if I don’t see the control line?

The test is not valid if the control line is not present after the specified time. Try another test with a new kit.

Are all test kits the same?

Each manufacturer has different directions so make sure you check.

I have all the symptoms of COVID but I am negative. What should I do?

Sometimes if you do the test early in symptom onset, it may be negative at first. Consult your physician/health care provider for advice. Keep your child home if experiencing any symptoms.

Do I need to get a PCR test if the Rapid Home test is positive?

No, a rapid home COVID antigen test that is positive is a positive test. No need to get any more tests unless directed by your healthcare provider.

Seasonal Illness vs. COVID

We are still seeing an increase in COVID cases. If your child is sick, please have them stay home. Do not assume it is “allergies” or “just a cold.” Please notify the school nurses and we will medically excuse the absence.

What if I test positive for COVID? What Next?

  • Let the school know you are out sick with COVID.
  • Stay in isolation at home for 5 days. If you feel better on Day 6 you can return to school.
  • Be extra careful about wearing your mask when you return to school. Make sure your mask fits properly-up and over the nose with no large gaps on the sides.
  • Rest, stay hydrated, eat well.
  • Homework can be accessed on google classroom. If you are too sick to do homework, notify the school nurses so they can inform your teachers.

Project Covid DeteCT

Students attending public K-6 schools, as well as those in Grades 7-12 are eligible for FREE weekly Covid-19 Testing during the 2021-2022 school year through Project COVID DeteCT.

  • Screening will be FREE to all students attending eligible schools in Connecticut regardless of vaccination status
  • No insurance information will be collected
  • The tests will be performed weekly using lower nasal swabs, not the long upper nasal swabs
  • Tests will be performed only with students that have submitted a signed Parent Consent Form. This signed form will cover testing through the end of the 2021-2022 school year
  • Benefits of participating in weekly Covid testing include helping to stop the spread of Covid-19 thereby protecting high risk family members from becoming seriously ill from the virus as well as others in the community.
  • Testing will keep schools open, preventing time away from in-school learning and friends

Additional COVID Testing Sites

Big picture
Big picture

More COVID Vaccination Options: If you can't make the TGS clinic on March 9th, try these tips…

  • Text Your Zip Code to 438829

  • Call 1-800-232-0233

  • Check Your Local Pharmacy’s Website

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

Big picture

2022 High School Yearbooks have been ordered!

If you have not ordered yours yet, you can still contact Mrs. Wood about purchasing one of the extra copies. Anyone interested in purchased an Angel Yearbook (a book donated to a student in financial need) can contact Mrs. Wood in person or at

Inclement Weather Communication

With the winter season officially here, we want to reiterate 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.

Mr. Shugrue, 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, Mr. Shugrue 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 - 2-Hour Delay - 9:45 AM start, 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 contact us at 860-379-8521.

Big picture

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

2/21-22 - Winter Recess

Early Dismissal

2/8 - 12:16 pm

Activity Day


Wingman Day


Big picture