Gertrude Chamberlin School

Family Newsletter April 15, 2022 Volume 16 Issue 30

April 18th - April 22nd - No School, Spring Break

Friday, April 29th - 12:30 PM Dismissal for Staff Development

Tuesday, May 10th - PTO Meeting 6:00 PM

Friday, May 13th PTO Fun Run

Tuesday, May 17th - 6:30 PM - 2nd and 4th Grade Concert in the GCS Gymnasium

Thursday, May 19th - 6:30 PM - 3rd and 5th Grade Concert in the GCS Gymnasium

Wednesday, May 25th - 6:30 PM - K and 1st Grade Concert in the GCS Gymnasium

Friday, May 27th - 12:30 PM Dismissal for Staff Development

Monday, May 30th - Memorial Day, No School

Playground Use After School

Our School's Out program uses the playground after school, which is approximately 80 children daily using the play structures. This is full capacity for our outdoor play areas! If families who are picking up at the end of the day are wanting playground time, we ask that you please use nearby Jaycee Park on Patchen Road, or wait to use the GCS playground until after 4:30 PM when School's Out numbers are lower or students are back inside. We greatly appreciate your understanding as we work to support a positive outdoor experience for the many students enrolled in after school care at GCS.

Important Information to Prepare for Next Year:

5th Grade Families

SAVE THE DATE : On Tuesday, May 24th from 6 - 7:15pm the 5th grade parent are invited to an information night at FHTMS. This is an evening for parents only and not for students at this time. The students will be having other opportunities to transition and visit the middle school prior to June.

On April 25th, FHTMS will be sending out a parent email to 5th grade families with more info about that evening as well as the transition process. Please stay tuned for more updates!

5th Grade teachers will also be sharing information with you about upcoming visits from FHTMS staff and students, and a visit to FHTMS during the school day!

Kindergarten - 4th Grade Families

If your family is planning to move and will not be with us for next year, please let us know. You can call 8026527403 or send an email to

We are doing family input for placement through Google again this year. Please take time to fill out the form that is linked below and let us know your thoughts about your child as a learner. This information, along with teacher input, will be extremely valuable as we work to create the best, balanced learning environments for all of our students. At Chamberlin, there is often teacher movement regarding grade levels, so we ask that you not make a specific teacher request – the teachers at the current grade levels may not necessarily be at the same grade level. If you need a paper copy of the form, please contact Please be sure to fill out the online form or mail in your paper input form by May 2nd.

School's Out Childcare Registration Information for Next Year

All families wanting to paticipate in School's Out, new or returning to any of our programs, can register for next school year starting April 4th. Current School's Out families are guaranteed enrollment. New families will be put into a lottery for remaining spaces and notified on May 6th of their enrollment status.

Allison Thomson

School's Out!

Program Administrator


Kindergarten Registration, New Student Registration and Returning Student Registration

The Registration Portal for 2022-2023 Kindergarten students and all Pre-K students will open. The portal can be accessed using your PowerSchool Parent Portal account.

All Kindergarten students will need to complete registration forms. If your student is already registered as a Pre-K student, please select “Returning Student”.

If you have not registered your student in the past, please select “New Student”. Registration will be a 2 step process.

Pre-K class placements are made on a first come, first serve basis.

Registration for all/any NEW 2022-2023 Grade 1-5 students will begin April 4, 2022.

The Annual Student Update (ASU) for all returning students will open on June 1, 2022.

The registration tool is NOT mobile phone friendly. Please use a laptop, or tablet to complete the forms. If you don’t have a device, please contact Lynne Baechle, 802-652-7403 or email for assistance. We now have a desk top set up in the office, pictured below, so families who need support or don't have access to a device can come in and get support to register.

Tennis, Anyone? Students In Physical Education Started A Tennis Unit This Week! Check out the PE website with new information for Health & PE Skills

GCS Health Education Update Grades K & 2

Dear Families,

The week after April break will start the next round of Health classes for grades K & 2. Health classes are 30 minutes a week and will begin on April 25, 2022. These classes will focus on learning about basic safety principles.

The students will learn:

  • Risk taking and Safety while Playing

  • Traffic and Bike Safety

  • Fire Safety

  • Emergency Help & Calling 9-1-1

  • Sun Safety & Importance of Protecting the Skin.

  • Water Safety Tips

These classes are part of the health education standards and students will be using age appropriate materials for learning as a full class as well as individually or small groups.

Please, share this experience with your child by discussing these topics at home in a caring and supportive way. Research shows that children tend to make better choices when their parents talk openly with them.

Please reach out if you have any further questions or concerns, my email address is Thank you for your continued support.


Louise DeGuise

GCS, Health & Physical Educator

Photos from the GCS artwork that was on display at the district Fine Arts Night on Wednesday! Thank you, Mrs. Goodrich, for highlighting our talented artists!

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Student Artwork Products for Purchase - PTO Fundraiser

Students have been working hard to create art work for an online art museum called, Artsonia. Once ready, families can choose to purchase items with their child's art work on it, such as a magnet, t-shirt, hat, etc. Mrs. Goodrich will contact families when these pieces will be ready to purchase in a few weeks. This is a fundraiser for the PTO, however there is no pressure to purchase anything. Thanks for your patience and stay tuned!

Last Chance to Order Your Yearbooks!

It's time to order your 2021-2022 yearbook! The deadline to order is April 21st. It comes in full color with tons of pictures and are only $20.00! You can also order personalization for an extra $2 and $1 for each icon. You can order online at All orders are online. This year, the cover will be artwork from our awesome 5th graders! If you have questions about the yearbook, please contact Cat Cutillo at

April is National Poetry Month!

In library class with Ms. Balk, 5th graders enjoyed writing Haiku poems to enter into an online poetry contest!

School Nurse Notes

FREE LAMP tests are available from the Health Department.

Find sites here (walk-ins allowed) or make an appointment here for pick-up.

FREE RAPID ANTIGEN tests are available from the school. Contact us.

If the first antigen test is negative, use the second at least 24 hours later. If they are both negative, and you still have concerns, get a LAMP or a PCR test.

Testing is recommended for people with symptoms, for people who are a close contact of someone with COVID-19 and not up-to-date on COVID vaccines, and for individuals who have travelled internationally.

A symptomatic student should only return to school when symptoms are resolved or markedly improved (and they have been fever-free for at least 24 hours without the use of fever-reducing medication).

Please continue to check the SBSD COVID-19 Dashboard for case updates, testing recommendations and illness guidelines, as we will be phasing out email notification at the end of April.

Be well,

Kerry Farrell

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Virtual Field Trips

If you’d like to get away over April break—consider taking your family on a virtual field trip! You can explore museums, zoos, National Parks, interesting landmarks, or even bring 3D virtual animals into your home! Check out these amazing resources for hundreds of FREE Virtual Field Trips and Virtual Animals!

Explore the Olympics, Antarctica, Space, Pyramids, Sharks, Volcanoes, National Parks, and virtually anywhere from any device or observe 3D virtual wolves, pandas, cheetahs, sharks, eagles, tigers, and more from any mobile device!

Farm To School - Highlighting Olive Oil and making a Chive and Dandelion Green Pesto

Hello South Burlington Families and Friends!

This month in Farm to School, we are discussing one of the ingredients we use A LOT in our recipes - olive oil! We use it so much for cooking with heat, in dressings, and in baking. Olive oil is loaded with healthy fats and vitamin E, which can benefit our bodies inside and out. Fats help give our bodies energy, protect our organs like our heart and brain, and help store energy for our bodies to use later. Vitamin E can help protect our bodies’ cells to strengthen them, especially in our immune system.

We paired our olive oil with some of the first greens to come up in these early spring months - Dandelion Greens and Chives! We figured this would make the most delicious springtime pesto, so we put our muscles to work in the classroom to hand-crush our ingredients with a mortar and pestle. It turned out great! This recipe can be made with many variations, so get out there and gather those greens and herbs to make this vibrant sauce. Put on top of pasta, grain bowls, salads, sandwiches and more!

Dandelion Green and Chive Pesto

Makes ~ 1 cup


● 2 cups of your favorite greens and herbs (we used 1 cup chives, 1 cup dandelion greens)

● ⅓ cup pepitas (or your other favorite nut/seed)

● Juice of ½ lemon

● ½ tsp salt

● ¼ cup olive oil

● Optional additions: 1 clove garlic, ¼ cup parmesan cheese


1. Pulse pepitas in the food processor (or crush with a mortar and pestle) until coarsely ground.

2. Add the greens, chives, salt, lemon juice (and optional additions if using) and pulse until finely

chopped and combined with the pepitas.

3. With the food processor running, slowly add the olive oil until blended and smooth.

4. Taste your pesto and adjust with more salt, lemon, olive oil, etc. to your liking!

News from the Common Roots Farm at South Village: 2022 Farmstand Memberships are selling fast.

Much like a CSA, but more flexible! Memberships can be used at any time throughout the season on any products sold in our Farmstand. To learn more and sign up:

Till next month, Nourish to Flourish!

Lauren Jones & Nora Scully

Common Roots - Farm to School Educators

April 14th Update From Superintendent Young

April 14, 2022

Dear Parents/Guardians and Staff,

We made it! Spring break is nearly here. My hope is that you will have some time to rest, recharge, and connect with family and friends over the next week. Enjoy the outdoors and those first crocuses popping up around town. Trails are still muddy, but there’s a little more green and sun every day. I want to thank you for all of your hard work and resilience, again, this year. It’s hard to believe we only have two months left in the 2021-2022 school year. At times, the year seems to have sped up (where did March go?) and at others, slowed to a crawl, but here we are and we’ve persevered together.

Now, comes the time to celebrate! Already, the 40th annual (in person this year!) District Arts Festival took place this week and the SBHS spring chorus concert occurred over the weekend. And of course, high school graduation as well as many other music events, sports championships, and other culminating events will round out the year. I’m looking forward to taking part in as many as I can!

Dates of Note:

April 18-22: Spring Break

April 27: Regular School Board Meeting 7 pm

April 29: Deadline for Applications to Serve on the Superintendent Search Committee (see below)

COVID Update

Our experience shows us that following school breaks, we often see an uptick in COVID cases. For that reason,with spring break upon us, I wanted to let you all know that FHTMS and SBHS will be providing a test kit for each student before break. Test kits can also be requested from the school nurse and high school students can pick up test kits at security. For elementary school families, test kits can be requested by contacting the school nurse or by using the request forms for Orchard School, RMCS, or GCS. Staff can request tests from their individual schools as well. The Vermont Department of Health states that individuals should test for COVID19 via an antigen, LAMP, or PCR test as soon as possible if they have symptoms of COVID-19 ─ even if the symptoms are mild, and even if they previously had COVID-19, if they are a close contact of someone who tested positive for COVID-19 and are not vaccinated or not up to date on one's vaccines (Learn more about when close contacts should get tested), or if they have travelled internationally.

​If you or your student(s) have any illness symptoms, please stay home and use two antigen tests, at least 24 hours apart. You can also access antigen, PCR, and LAMP tests for free at a number of state run testing sites. I wanted to remind everyone that our dashboard will continue to be updated. Please check the dashboard often to help make personal decisions around testing, masking and attendance at work or school.

Elementary School Assistant Principal Search: Two Recommended to the Board

Thanks to everyone who participated in the Zoom Q and A’s last week to hear from our three finalists for the elementary school assistant principal positions, Stephanie Sumner, Chris Shackett, and Olivia Kane. After reviewing the feedback from the surveys and conferring with my team, I offered the positions to Stephanie Sumner and Olivia Kane. They have both accepted and therefore, my recommendation will go before the school board at their April 27 meeting. The locations where these positions will be based is to be determined. I’m excited to welcome both!

Executive Director for Equity Position

Last Thursday, we offered a Zoom listening session with two candidates for the Executive Director for Equity position for families, staff, and community members. RMCS Principal Kathleen Kilbourne facilitated this session and the same questions were asked of candidates De-Dee Loftin-Davis and Nikki Ellis. A short Google survey was provided after the sessions and I am currently reviewing responses along with feedback from administrators and staff. More to come soon!

Superintendent Search Update: Apply to be on the Search Committee!

The South Burlington School Board invites you to apply to serve on a Superintendent Search Committee. The Board wishes to appoint a Committee that represents the diverse interests and perspectives of our community. Committee members will serve for a period of up to 6 months and will primarily be responsible for making hiring recommendations to the Board, as well as several support and interview activities. Interested? Please complete this application by April 29th, 2022!

Spring Break: Virtual Style!

If you’d like to get away over April break, you can do so through a virtual field trip! You can explore museums, zoos, National Parks, interesting landmarks, or even bring 3D virtual animals into your home! Check out these amazing resources for hundreds of FREE Virtual Field Trips and Virtual Animals! Explore the Olympics, Antarctica, Space, Pyramids, Sharks, Volcanoes, National Parks, and virtually anywhere from any device or observe 3D virtual wolves, pandas, cheetahs, sharks, eagles, tigers, and more from any mobile device!

Update on FHTMS Initiative to Send Backpacks to Ukraine

If you’ve been following the outstanding efforts of our FHTMS students and staff to collect and send backpacks to Ukraine, you will be heartened by this update from Liz Siddle. “We have an approximate number of over 400 backpacks! Tuttle took in packs and processed them from surrounding areas- Bristol, Williston and Berkshire Elm and Middle which added to our efforts. This article on the effort gives a fantastic summary of the students’ involvement.

“The flow of backpacks into our school and the overall generosity and call to action was astounding. It took a lot of effort and commitment on the part of our peer leaders to check each backpack and to keep things organized. Every bag that came in was dutifully emptied and repacked to ensure that kids were getting what they needed. We felt so fortunate to be a part of an organization that is helping kids in such a direct way. Every backpack felt personalized and made this whole experience very emotional. To think of kids receiving such a simple gesture of comfort and compassion was what motivated students, families, and coordinators.” Peer leaders who were involved in the effort had a small get together and celebration on Thursday. I am so proud!

School Happenings

SB Chorus Students Shine at Performances

Last weekend the high school chorus held their spring concert which was a true joy! Vocal Music Educator Aimee Bushey shared that students in the Vocal Music Department have been VERY active this year! She expressed a desire to recognize their efforts and celebrate their participation in numerous music festivals (that are finally taking place after a 2-year hiatus!):

American Choral Directors Association All-Eastern Choir: Luke Nelson and Gianna Morin

Champlain Valley District 3 Choir: Anna Willis, Gianna Morin, Hanlan Paquin, Melissa Rosowsky, Luke Nelson, Parker Banas, Casey Sullivan, Gracie Lawrence, Earl Aguila, Simon Hall, Audrey Warren, Sophie Warren, Julia Todd, Jamphel Yangotsan, Sam Button, Ken Smith, and Braden Paquin

All New England Music Festival Choir: Luke Nelson, Parker Banas, Justin Shafritz, and Matthew Vigneau

Vermont All State Choir: Anna Willis, Gianna Morin, Hanlan Paquin, Melissa Rosowsky, Parker Banas, Casey Sullivan, Matthew Vigneau, Justin Shafritz, Lucas Gales, Luke Nelson, Earl Aguila, Morgan Baker, Maddie Magnant, and Walker Hughes

Well done!

FHTMS SOAR Students Stand Against Racism

Earlier this month, FHTMS students who are involved with SOAR (Students Organizing Against Racism) along with their advisors Gary Russell and Cam Basden, held a demonstration along Dorset Street. Russell shared that this was a great opportunity for SOAR students to be proactive rather than reactive in solidarity against racism. Students have attended meetings and participated in a variety of anti-racist activities throughout the school year, in order to raise awareness and promote discussions about racism and racist acts. This event culminated much of what they've worked on, rather than mobilizing following a racist act.

Following the demonstration, a debriefing session was held for students to share their experiences. Russell wrote, “Although we prepared them with a "3 Principles of Positive Messaging" discussion of what to expect, many were pleasantly surprised at the large numbers of passers-by that supported them. What's really impressive is that even IN THE RAIN not one of them left. SOAR students were being proactive rather than reactive and staying on message. It was definitely the high point of their day (and mine!)!”

RMCS Students Earn an All School Celebration and Choose Karaoke!

Kesia Cope and her 4th grade class recently had some fun belting out the tunes using their karaoke machine! Students at RMCS had earned an all school celebration after earning 100 Marky Marks for being respectful, mindful, and cooperative. Students who wanted to participate, picked a song, and sang in front of their peers and teachers. Some students were judges and were expected to share one positive thing about their peer's performance. Cope said, “I was so impressed with the talent that is among my fourth grade class and how brave and bold they were to sing in front of their classmates and their teachers.”

GCS Students Develop Digital Books

Students in Emma Testone’s 3rd grade class at Gertrude Chamberlin School have been working hard for the last two months on their informational writing unit. To wrap up what they had learned, the students chose a topic that was of high interest to them to research and create a nonfiction book using the website "book creator." Yesterday was their final day to work on the nonfiction books and they had an author's party today to present them! Some of the chosen topics include Minecraft, dogs, soccer, school during COVID, and the history of baking.

SBSD Elementary Technology Integration Specialist, Kristen Courcelle, presented a “techspiration” on Book Creator to Chamberlin staff this week. Periodically, Kristen showcases innovative and creative technology tools to teachers to inspire them to integrate them in the classroom with their students. Book Creator allows students (and teachers) to create custom ebooks combing text, images, videos, audio, links, shapes, drawing tools, and more! Once the books are completed, they are put in a virtual library that classes can access at any point. “The students have been loving book creator....I've never seen them this excited about a program!” Testone said.

Orchard Students and Staff Create Doves

The DEI team at Orchard organized a schoolwide project for this month's Reading to Raise Antiracists book, IN MY MOSQUE. On one of the last pages of the book is the sentence, "In my mosque, we pray for peace, love and joy.... just like my friends who worship in churches, temples, and synagogues." The project focused on the words "peace, love and joy." After hearing the book, students used media of the teacher's choosing such as watercolor, markers, or cut paper, to decorate paper doves. Beautiful!

Thanks as always for reading my lengthy updates. Next week, I will be taking a break from the newsletter, but it will return to its normal schedule on April 28. Have a great break!


Check Out What's Happening In the South Burlington Cub Scouts!

April Kid's Events at the South Burlington Public Library

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Does Your Child Need Milk for Their Home Lunch?

Milk is NOT free for students who need a milk for their home lunch. The cost of a milk is 50 cents and parents/caregivers can send in a check, made out to South Burlington Nutritional Services, to credit their child's account or have money taken directly from an account to credit to your child's account. or use our online payment option through MySchoolBucks.

If you have any questions, please contact Rhonda Ketner