Region In Review

February 22, 2019 | Shepaug Focus

Senior Project Spotlight - "The Julia Effect" by Hannah Lasky

This year, we continue our Senior Project Spotlight video series, starting with Hannah Lasky's senior project, "The Julia Effect". Hannah hosted a Swim-A-Thon at Shepaug's swimming pool that helped raise money for the families of children fighting Aplastic Anemia. With the help from the middle school, high school, morning swimmers and community members, Hannah was able to raise over $1,500 which she donated to the Julia's Wings Foundation.

National Honor Society Induction Ceremony

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On Thursday, January 31, 2019, current members of the Shepaug National Honor Society (NHS) joined administrators, teachers and families of the newly elected members to celebrate the induction of this dynamic group of students.

The NHS leadership team kicked off the evening by defining the high standards of the National Honor Society. Ellie Schmus read the pledge, a statement of the core values to which each member is challenged to uphold. She was followed by the remainder of the leadership team, who spoke to the inductees and their families in the crowd about the four pillars of NHS: Ethan Hibbard: Scholarship; Abby Gorra: Service, Grace Harty: Leadership: and Ashley Mulhare: Character.

Inductees were introduced by a current member of the National Honor Society, followed by the ceremonial candle lighting, the traditional symbol of acceptance into the Honor Society, and a group recitation of the National Honor Society pledge. Their peers praised inductees for qualities such as inspiring work ethics, kindness, perseverance, and loyalty.

We welcome our newest members of the National Honor Society: Francesca Amato, Gabriella Amato, Erin Bailey, Sarah Caprilozzi Brianna Cichowski, Jayden Cornwall, Taryn Crossley, Isabel Eddy, Carlye Gruss, Bailey Herron, Noah Levine, Erin McGrath, Owen Moore, Sienna Moore, Elizabeth Neunzig, Gwenavere Noto, Devon O’Dwyer, Nadia Ostrosky, Reese Peck, Edward Puskas, Lucy Puskas, Lily Schur, Julia Sinatra, Mahelet Steinmetz, and Annika Vikstrom.

Please click below to view the 2019 National Honor Society Induction Ceremony!

National Merit Scholarship Finalist, Wilson King

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Left to Right: Michael Boucher (Director of School Counseling), Kim Gallo (Principal), Wilson King, Lori Ferreira (Associate Principal), and Megan Bennett (Superintendent).

Wilson King represents our learning community with distinction daily, never more so than when he was named a finalist in the competitive scholarship from the National Merit Scholarship Corporation (NMSC)!

In October of 2017, Wilson joined approximately 1.6 million students throughout the United States in completing the Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (PSAT/NMSQT). In September, he was notified that he was among 16,000 semi-finalists, and, this week, Mrs. Gallo presented him with an NMSC Certificate of Merit, recognizing him as one of 1,600 finalists. Wilson was joined by his parents, Julie and Bill, his brother Wyatt (another academic force at Shepaug), Superintendent Bennett, Ms. Ferreira, Mr. Boucher, Mrs. Laughlin (not pictured) and Mrs. Gallo for a small reception and presentation to honor his distinguished contribution to the Shepaug Experience.

Congratulations, Wilson!

2019 Scholar Athletes: Abigail Gorra & Ethan Hibbard

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Shepaug Seniors Abigail Gorra and Ethan Hibbard have been selected as Shepaug Valley School's 2019 Scholar-Athletes and will be recognized at the Connecticut Association of Schools Scholar-Athlete Banquet on May 5th at the Aqua Turf Club in Southington.

Abby is a three-sport athlete who plays soccer, ice hockey, and tennis at Shepaug. Abby was selected to the Berkshire League Girls Soccer All-Star Second Team this past fall and is a First Team Berkshire League All-Star in Tennis. In the fall of 2019, Abby plans to continue her studies at Cornell University and will participate in club sports.

Ethan is also a three-sport athlete, and he participates in soccer, basketball, and baseball. Ethan was selected as a Second Team Berkshire League All-Star in Basketball during his junior year and was a First Team Berkshire League All-Star, as well as a First Team All-State selection in baseball. Ethan will continue his studies next year at Fairfield University, where he will also compete in Varsity Baseball.

Congratulations to Abby and Ethan!

Indoor Track at CIAC State Championships

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Left to Right: Olivia Tibbatts (12), Michael McCluskey (12), Gavin Block (12), Nate Douskey (11), Chance Dutcher (12), Erik Lindblom (10). Cameron Brown (11) also participated in the meet but was missing from the photo.

Above are members of Shepaug's Indoor Track team that participated in the CIAC State Championship Meet at the Floyd Little Athletic Center in New Haven on February 7. The following athletes have set school records this year in indoor track and field.


Gavin Block 55m 6.99

Gavin Block 300m 37.94

Cameron Brown 55H 8.22

Owen Moore, Erik Lindblom, Paris Afiouni, Sam Quigley 4x800m 10:03.67

Gavin Block, Nathan Douskey, Michael McCluskey, Erik Lindblom SMR 4:06.45

Cameron Brown Long Jump 19-4


Olivia Tibbatts 55m 7.70

Olivia Tibbatts 300m 44.05

Nadia Ostrosky, Aileen Rosa, Olivia Tibbatts, Sydnie Vidal 4x200m 2:00.79

Erin McGrath, Aileen Rosa, Elisa Afiouni, Olivia Tibbatts 4x800m 11:30.32

Olivia Tibbatts, Aileen Rosa, Elisa Afiouni, Erin McGrath DMR 14:19.21

Rivals Night Rocks the Shepaug Gym

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On Friday, February 8, Shepaug students packed the gym for the annual "Rivals Night" game against Nonnewaug. Both the boys and girls varsity teams played exciting, but heartbreaking games (Boys at Shepaug, girls at Nonnewaug) losing by one point after potential game-winning shots at the buzzer fell short.

At Shepaug, a large crowd supported by the Shepaug Pep Band, the Shepaug Cheerleaders, and a very vocal student section, were entertained not only by the Shepaug basketball team's exciting play but also by the halftime performance of Shepaug's basketball future. The Shepaug Basketball Association's Grade 1-4 basketball players displayed their skills to the large crowd, demonstrating that our community can look forward to exciting basketball in the Shepaug gym for years to come.

Despite the fact that the outcome of the varsity games was not what Shepaug was hoping for, it was an exciting night of SPARTAN PRIDE.

Model United Nations

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Shepaug Valley School recently participated in the Harvard Model United Nations conference located in the heart of Boston. Shepaug was one of only five Connecticut public schools selected to the sixty-sixth session of Harvard Model United Nations. Under the guidance and leadership of Wilson King, 18 Shepaug students collaborated with students from around 200 secondary schools and 40 different countries to grapple with some of the most serious challenges in international relations. The conference lasted four days and there were over 3,500 students from around the globe in participation.

Each year, a senior student directs the club as part of his/her senior project. Wilson King is a three year veteran of the club and was a natural fit to lead the club. He struck a seemingly impossible balance of patience, urgency, flexibility, and enthusiasm to develop experienced student delegates and mold first-time delegates. Successful delegates offer poignant arguments, thoughtful reflections, and careful consideration of those with different perspectives. While at the conference, students served on committees in the spirit of the real United Nations and worked to build compromises and alliances with students from different countries.

This year, Shepaug represented the country of Saudi Arabia. Obviously, this is a demanding country assignment in light of recent events in Saudi Arabia. The Saudis geopolitical prominence in the Middle East also made this a rewarding and exciting opportunity for our students. As a strong force and a sought after ally by many other countries, our student-delegates found themselves in situations where their voice, knowledge, and expertise became vital to passing resolutions. All student-delegates spent countless hours learning as much as they could about Saudi Arabia, reading background guides, and writing position papers. We did have two students represent Yemen and the same can be said of them. One other student applied for and was accepted into a specialized agency. These accomplishments are a product of the very good reputation that Shepaug students have carved out over the years at Harvard. This year’s group only improved our standing.

Some of the committees that our students served on included the International Monetary Fund, the Special Summit on Terrorism, the United Nations Environmental Programme, the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, and the Economic and Financial Committee, among many others. While working to build resolutions to the most pressing issues in the world, students had opportunities to build lasting relationships with students from all over the world. Our students continue to perform at a high level, consistently winning awards each year at Harvard. Congratulations to Wilson King, who was Honorable Mention for Best Delegate at this year’s conference!

The club would also like to thank the community for their continual generous support year in and year out through bake sales and the Holiday Bazaar. Additionally, special thanks to the Shepaug Student Project Foundation and Humanities Department for financial contributions that helped defray the cost of the trip for student-delegates.

Shepaug Ice Hockey Featured in Gametime CT News Article

Shepaug Alum, Jordan Fredericks ('17), Accepted to US Military at West Point

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Congratulations to Shepaug alum Jordan Fredericks '17, who has been accepted to enter the United States Military at West Point. Jordan and his mom, Danielle, visited Shepaug to share the good news with Mrs. Laughlin and the teachers who supported him through the arduous process of applying to this storied institution throughout the past year. Jordan will join fellow alums, John Swanson '16, and Sean Welsh '17, at West Point. Thank you for your service to our nation and be assured that the love and pride of the Shepaug community is with you every step of the way!!

Fliers & Upcoming Events

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Region 12 Calendar

Feb 22 - WPS Student Council Fundraiser, Crazy Sock Day

Feb 22 - SVS Spartan Night, 7pm

Feb 25 - BOE / Facilities Committee Meeting, SVS Library, 6pm

Feb 25 - BOE Policies & Bylaws Committee Meeting, SVS Library, 6pm

Feb 25 - Board of Education Meeting, SVS Library, 7pm

Feb 28 - SVS Scholarship Workshop, Library, 2:30pm

Mar 1 - Dr. Suess' Birthday and Read Across America Day

Mar 4 - SVS PTO Meeting, Room A4, 6pm

Mar 4 - BOE / Education Committee Meeting, SVS Library, 6pm

Mar 4 - BOE / Finance Committee Meeting, SVS Library, 6pm

Mar 4 - BOE / Special Meeting (Supt. Budget Presentation), SVS Library, 6:30pm

Mar 4 - Board of Education Meeting, SVS Library, 7pm

Mar 8 - SVS 2019 Talent Show, Auditorium, 7pm

Mar 9 - SVS World Affairs Forum, Library, 2pm

Mar 11 - BOE / Building Committee Meeting, 5pm

Mar 12 - WPS PTO Meeting, 6:30pm

Mar 13 - BFS PTO Meeting, 6:30pm

Mar 15 - BS Movie Night

Mar 15 - BFS Talent Show, 2-3pm and 6:30pm

Mar 15 - SVS All Middle School Dance, Cafeteria, 7pm

Follow Region 12 on our social media channels for updates and information!

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The Region 12 community educates, challenges, and inspires all learners to become compassionate, creative, and courageous individuals who are empowered by the knowledge, character, and perseverance to achieve their greatest potential within the global society.

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