Gertrude Chamberlin School

Family Newsletter June 21, 2021 Volume 15 Issue 43

Summer Edition of the Family Newsletter

This is the final edition of our family newsletter for the 2020-2021 School Year! It's been a very strange year, and we appreciate all of the family support you have given us during a year of transitions! We were so happy to end with 5 full days of in person learning, and be able to bring back some fun for our children. For those of you moving out of the Chamberlin district, we wish you and your child(ren) the best of luck in their new school. If you are returning to us in August, we look forward to seeing you back for another year of sharing, caring and learning together! HAVE A GREAT SUMMER!
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We ended the last school day with our traditional bubble send off!

Meet the Teaching Team at GCS for the 2021-2022 School Year!

Our teachers have created introduction videos, so your child can meet some of their teachers before they come back to GCS in August! Over the summer, you will receive placement and school information through email. This information will be sent out a couple of weeks before the first day of school. You can use our FlipGrid videos to learn about what our teachers like to do and how excited they are to welcome you back to Chamberlin School! We hope you enjoy hearing about all of the fun things that will be happening in the new school year!

To view it, please…

  1. Click on the link
  2. Click Enter your guest password (see image below)
  3. The password is GCSTeachers
  4. Click the blue GO button
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5th Grade Send Off!

Our 5th graders had a fantastic day on the 17th, which started with an all school assembly in the morning. Grades K and 5 got to be in the gym in person, while the other grade levels joined us on Zoom. Our kindergarteners wished our 5th graders good luck in middle school, and gave them each a carnation. The 5th grade team then went to Jaycee Park for a morning of fun field games. They returned to school for a pizza lunch, followed by a celebration ceremony. Following the ceremony, they enjoyed ice cream from Mr. Ding A Ling under the tent. Thank you to the families who helped with decorations and coordinated field game set up, lunch and the ice cream truck! Also to Ms. McKegney, Mr. Diamond and Ms. Kane who put in the hard work to plan and make sure that the day was successful and fun for our students after a very strange and uncertain year. We also had a wonderful anonymous donor who paid for the recording of the celebration through Media Factory. Good luck in middle school to our 5th graders!

News From the South Burlington Public Library

“Tails and Tales!”

Starts Today! The 2021 Summer Reading Program, will run from June 1st to August 20th. Summer Reading Kits for ages 0-3, 4-12 and teens are available from June 1st to June 11th at the University Mall location, and can also be picked up at the end of the Bag ‘n Wagon Parade on June 13th. Kits will also be available at the new location starting July 19th. Pick up a kit and start reading! More information can be found on our website. Summer Reading 2021: "Tails and Tales" (

The Bag ‘N Wagon Parade!

On Sunday, June 13th, The South Burlington Public Library will begin its move to our new location with a “Bag ‘n Wagon Parade”, generously supported by Mascoma Bank! We'll be joined by special guest: “The Big Blue Train” as we parade from the University Mall, across Dorset Street and right to the front doors of 180 Market Street. It’s a walking celebration of South Burlington’s new library and you are invited! Check out our website for information. Celebrate with a "Bag N Wagon" Parade sponsored by Mascoma Bank! (

The Moving Timeline: Details for Patrons

It’s happening! We’re packing, we’re sorting and we’re organizing to make the move to 180 Market Street. Our University Mall location will remain open for browsing or curbside pick-up—but just until June 11th. On that date, at 5pm, we will close the University Mall location, and won’t re-open until mid-July when we are settled into our new location at 180 Market Street. Click this link for a Moving Timeline: Library Closed - Moving (

NOW is the time to grab as many books, books on CD, DVDs and magazines as you will need to get you through this transition! There are no renewals after June 11, but also no late fines. The Bookdrop will also NOT be available after June 11th, so please hold on to any returns until we are on Market Street.

Important Library Policy Updates

After July 19th, when you visit our new library, please know that children in fourth grade or lower must be accompanied by an adult. Children in fifth grade and up may attend the library unaccompanied. All patrons, regardless of age, are expected to follow our Patron Code of Conduct PATRON CODE OF CONDUCT.pdf (

Additionally, the Library supports the right of all persons, regardless of age, to have equal access to the Internet. Parents are encouraged to accompany their children and guide their

Internet exploration. The Library does not assume responsibility for monitoring Internet content accessed by children. Click the link for the full policy. Computer and Internet Policy 1 16 20.pdf (

Thanks for your understanding and patience during this transition period. We look forward to seeing you in our beautiful new space!!

Save the Date: July 23rd, The Official Open House and Ribbon Cutting Ceremony. All Welcome!

4th Grade Had A Busy Last Week of Learning!

Hello and Goodbye Assembly, June 17th - Update on Staff Leaving

At our final assembly we said Goodbye and Hello to some of our GCS friends. We announced students that no longer live in South Burlington and will be moving to another school, and wished them well. We also said goodbye to some of our beloved staff. After more than 20 years of teaching in our district, Ms. Wales, our art teacher is retiring. She has been both a classroom and an art teacher in South Burlington, and has brought her creativity to many students. Ms. Martin, our 2nd grade teacher this year, will be transferring to Orchard School as the new preschool teacher. Mr. Perkins, our 2/3 ELA special educator will also be transferring to Orchard School. Mr. Murphy, who has been a long term substitute in 3rd grade as the math teacher most of the year, is moving to Minnesota to teach 2nd grade. One of our Interventionists, Mrs. Shenoy, will be moving to Texas with her family. Ms. Signorino, who was a kindergarten teacher at RMCS and this year, GCS, is moving back home to Missouri. Sharon Davis, our Howard Center clinician, will be leaving GCS and the Howard Center to start her own meditation counseling business. Ms. Palmer, our reading teacher this year will also be leaving GCS. Interventionist Melissa Conchiere will be leaving us to pursue her career as an Occupational Therapist Assistant in Colchester. Mr. Ferguson, our general paraeducator, is moving to New York. Part-time Behavior Coach, Ethan O'Day will now be working full time in our School's Out Program. Recess monitors Leah Madden and Kailin Farrell will be moving out of state to New York and Arizona. We are so grateful to these wonderful educators for all of the time and love that they have given to our students and families!

We also said hello to new staff at our assembly. Stephanie Custer will join us as a second grade teacher, as Mrs. Preska is going to kindergarten. Mrs. Custer is currently teaching in Barre Town. Ellie Gover will join our first grade team. Mrs. Gover is currently teaching in Cambridge. Jenny Goodrich, will be our new art teacher. Mrs. Goodrich is currently teaching in Swanton. We welcome back Amanda Rickard as our reading teacher and Amanda McCarthy as a 3rd grade teacher. They both took positions at other schools when our budget failed multiple times last year. Karen Crawford will join us from the high school as our new ELA special educator in grades 2 and 3. Katie Wessels will join us as our new Howard clinician! Mrs. Wessels is a social worker in Ohio and she will be moving to VT in the next month. We are excited to have these wonderful educators join us in August!

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Layperson Volunteer Service Award for GCS

On behalf of the entire staff at Gertrude Chamberlin School and the South Burlington Educator’s Association, we congratulate Heather Osborne for being chosen as our 2021 SBEA Layperson Volunteer Service Award!!! Congratulations!!! Heather was nominated for all of her work as our PTO treasurer and for all of her work and effort with our yearbook...especially this year and last year during a pandemic! We are grateful for all of the work Heather does to support our school! Along with a gift, Heather's name will be added to our volunteer plaque in the library. Mr. Diamond, our SBEA representative, presented Heather with a flower basket this week.

Traditionally, we celebrate our Layperson and all of our parent/community volunteers at our annual Layperson Tea. Next year, we plan to recognize our 2020, 2021, & 2022 laypeople and volunteers in person.

We Will Miss You, Ms. Wales!

Every student at GCS left their mark for Ms. Wales...on a beautiful Adirondack chair for her deck! We secretly had students put their thumbprints on this beautiful chair that she plans to put on her deck. We wish Ms. Wales all the best in retirement!
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Summer Happenings at GCS

Our school will be a very busy place this summer...for construction! An almost $2 million upgrade will be happening, to install a heating and cooling system in every classroom. This means that our school will be closed for the entire summer, as construction crews work a very tight deadline to get this installation completed before the beginning of the next school year. Programs that typically happen at GCS, such as School's Out and Summer School, will be located at the other two elementary schools, Rick Marcotte Central School and Orchard Elementary School. The main office will also be unavailable for most of the summer - the best way to reach us is through email. Remember that registrations can be completed online, and every student returning needs to complete the online updates for registering for the 2021-2022 school year. (see directions below). Feel free to reach out to Ms. Rouelle or Mrs. Baechle if you need assistance over the summer. We will be in and out of our "remote offices"...because even principals and administrative assistants enjoy the beautiful summer and go on vacations! :)

2021-2022 School Year

We are excited to introduce our new teaching teams for next year! In August, you will receive an email letter with information about the new school year, including your child's homeroom placement. In grades 3, 4 and 5, students will have two or three teachers that specialize in reading and math and possibly science/writing. We have created a "Meet the Teacher" Flip Grid so your child can meet their teacher over the summer! Our teaching teams are:

Kindergarten - Mrs. Brown, Mrs. Bahrenburg, Mrs. Preska

1st Grade - Mrs. Boudreau, Mrs. Gover, Mrs. Routhier

2nd Grade - Mrs. Custer, Mrs. Rogers

3rd Grade - Mrs. Simpson, Ms. Kane and Mrs. McCarthy

4th Grade - Mr. Provost, Ms. Murphy

5th Grade - Ms. McKegney, Mr. Diamond, Mrs. Zuchman

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Summer Meals

The 2021 USDA Summer Breakfast and Lunch Program will be available to all students and children in the South Burlington Community from Monday, June 21st until Thursday August 19th. The USDA Summer Food Service Program is free to all children under 18 yrs. old. Meals are available via pickup or delivery Monday-Thursday.

Household deliveries within South Burlington will occur between 9:30-11:00 Monday-Thursday with Thursday's delivery containing meals for Friday-Sunday as well.

Pickup time at FHTMS main lobby is from 9:00-10:00 AM, Monday-Thursday with Thursdays pickup containing meals for Friday-Sunday as well.

Meals must be ordered in advance on a week-by-week basis via an online meal ordering system.

Rhonda L. Ketner

Nutritional Services Director

South Burlington School District

500 Dorset Street

South Burlington, VT 05403

Office: 802-652-7160

Fax: 802-652-7288


Farm To School, Common Roots and the South Burlington Food Shelf

As Common Roots completes our 13th year of Farm to School lessons in your 3 elementary schools, we would like to say Thank You for welcoming us as essential educators this year, and accolades have expressed for our bringing Farm to School lessons with taste tests to your children.

Several of you have already come to our Farm with your children and picked up your FREE Seed Starter Kits, very exciting! We have plenty more!

This Saturday, June 5th is our Farm Hop. 11-2 at the Farm at South Village, 55 Allen Road East, simply follow the signs. Your children may walk our farm with you, hear stories from our educator, taste yummy foods, and meet our honey bees in person (safely in their habitat)!! Lauren, who has worked with your children will be ready to meet you at our Farmstand. See the attached poster to learn about this fabulous event we have prepared for you!

If you cannot make the Farm Hop, please stop by our farm for a visit. We are open Monday through Saturday, 8 am - 6 pm.

The Food Shelf continues to be open and likely in July, you will be able to go inside and select what you would like. Common Roots Farmstand is set up every time it is open. You select whatever you like for the week and we bring it fresh 3 times a week.


356 Dorset Street


Thursdays 4:30 - 6:30 pm

Fridays and Saturdays 8-10 am

If you would like to get texts with updates throughout the summer, e-mail

If you know anyone who needs food, send them our way!

Thank You and Nourish to Flourish,

Carol McQuillen

Director of Common Roots

Please Register Your Student for the Upcoming School Year. This Is Required for Returning Students.

Annual Registration for all returning students is open in PowerSchool and due by August 17th. We ask all parents verify the registration of their student(s) for the 2021-2022 school year. To access the PowerSchool Parent Portal:
  • Click on the big "P" icon in the blue ribbon on the top of the Gertrude Chamberlin home page.
  • If you have forgotten your Username or need a password reset, please contact Mrs. Baechle at 652-7403 or
  • If more than one student is linked to the portal account, choose the appropriate student at the top left corner
  • Choose the Forms link from the left navigation bar
  • Under the Annual Student Update category, click “Update A. Getting Started: Annual Student Update 2021-2022” to begin completing the forms packet

The Registration website ( has helpful, translatable, information for parents/guardians. Instructions to register their students, lists of required documents, and guides to creating parent portal accounts and linking student(s) can be found there.

If you need assistance, please contact Mrs. Baechle at 652-7403 BEFORE JUNE 18TH, or

June 18th Update from Superintendent Young

June 18, 2021

Dear Parents/Guardians and Staff,

We made it! And we did it together. There are not enough words to convey my gratitude for our students, staff, families, and community for the collaboration, resilience, and sheer grit it has taken to get through this school year. I know it has been hard on all of us and I hope individually and as a district we will have time over the summer to reflect upon lessons learned and on new ways to move forward in our changed world. I know we will face challenges as we return to school in the fall, but how wonderful it will be to have everyone together once again.

Speaking of taking a break, while I have enjoyed providing you all with these weekly updates as another form of connection, I wanted to let you know, I’ll be adjusting the frequency over the summer. Look for a couple shorter updates from me and of course, another Zoom chat! There are a lot of exciting things happening in our District over the summer from the move of many of our offices to 575 Dorset Street to the noise mitigation project underway at Gertrude Chamberlin School. I’ll also closely be watching the COVID-19 vaccine trials in children under 12 and will be in touch as we solidify our plans for a return to school in person for all of our students! Please see some end of year highlights below.

First, a big shout-out to the SBHS Girls Lacrosse D1 state champions . What a way to end the season and year!

Graduations happened at all of our schools over the past week beginning with SBHS June 12 at the Essex Fairgrounds followed by the elementary and middle school graduations which were held yesterday. Congrats to all!

Director of Equity Search Update

I announced two weeks ago that I am excited that for the 2021-2022 school year we will be hiring for a new position in our District: an Executive Director of Equity. In terms of next steps, we have developed a request for proposals RFP for a consultant to help design and lead a recruitment and selection process to hire for this position. More details to come!

Don’t Wait until August! Annual Student Update Forms Are Open for the 2021-2022 School Year

Get started today! Please register your student for the 2021-2022 School Year by completing the Annual Student Update forms before August 17th. These forms help families verify and share important health and contact information as well as allow for permissions to be set for school technology devices. To start, click this link: Getting Started: Register a Returning Student. If you have questions or need assistance with this process, please contact your school directly.

Nutrition Services Update: FREE Summer Meals

Thanks to the efforts of our incredible nutrition services team, meals will continue to be available FREE of charge to students and community members under the age of 18 from Monday June 21st- Thursday August 19th, 2021. Daily household deliveries within South Burlington will occur between 9:30-11:00 Monday through Thursday with Thursday’s delivery containing meals for Friday-Sunday as well. Pickup time at the FHTMS main lobby will be from 9:00-10:00 AM, Monday-Thursday with Thursday’s pickup containing meals for Friday-Sunday as well. Meals must be ordered weekly by Thursday at 1:00 pm via our online meal ordering system. Please do not order meals for days you will be away.

Connecting with the School Board: Upcoming Opportunities

Thanks to all of the community members who have been joining the board for their regular meetings and Zoom chats! In July, they will only have one short meeting on July 7. Next week, Chair Bridget Burkhardt will be holding her Monday morning Zoom June 21 from 9:00-11:00 am, join Rebecca Day Tuesday, June 22 from 10:00-11:00 am and Brian Minier Tuesday, June 22 from 6:00-7:00 pm. In July, several board members plan to continue these chats. Be sure to check the District website over the summer for the latest dates and links. If you missed this past Wednesday’s regular school board meeting, you can watch it on the Media Factory website.

School Happenings

Highlights from SB Music

Vocal Music Educator Aimee Bushey wanted to recognize the tremendous work and creativity of the SB music staff and students this year! “To the SBSD Music staff- thank you for continuing to work diligently to inspire and engage students during the last year and half! To the students- THANK YOU for your resiliency, your dedication to the arts, your creativity, and your flexibility! You have inspired your teachers so much!”

Bushey also shared that SBHS Graduate (Class of 2021!) Taryn Turner received the VT All State Music Performance Scholarship for the second year in a row. You can watch her performance HERE along with all of the other scholarship recipients.

For next year, Bushey wanted to remind families that it’s never too late to sign your child(ren) up for a music class at FHTMS or SBHS! Students can expect to see vocal and instrumental ensembles in their daily class schedule next year.

FHTMS Summer Library

Thinking of starting a book club? Want to actually do the suggested reading from your teacher’s list? The FHTMS library and Janette Hasenecz are happy to announce that the library will be open Friday mornings July 2-August 31 from 10 a.m. - 12 p.m. to check out books and socialize with friends.

In addition, Orchard School summer library will also be in full swing on Wednesdays from 9 a.m.-12 p.m. beginning June 23 and running through August 11. SBSD employee and former Orchard School parent, Janette Hasenecz, will be running this program as well! For questions about either program, contact Janette at

Rick Marcotte Central Student Writes Letter to Johnson & Johnson and Gets Response!

In March of this year, rising 3rd grader Tucker Sutherland, a student in Stephanie Hockenbury’s class, wrote an opinion piece regarding a need for a COVID-19 vaccine for children. The piece was sent to Johnson & Johnson and a personal response letter to Tucker arrived today! Hockenbury wrote, “Their response was a supportive, positive end to our school year with encouraging words and hope of a vaccine and more normalcy for school in the fall.” Well done!

Gertrude Chamberlin Nifty Fifty Parade

The weather has been fantastic for all sorts of outdoor activities from lunches to parades! Last week Kindergarten students at Chamberlin participated in a parade where they dressed in attire showing what they want to be when they grow up and this week, 4th graders held a nifty fifty parade where they showed off their creations celebrating fifty states.

*Please note that last week, a student who also served on the PBIS committee, Nour, was inadvertently omitted from the highlight of this great initiative. This has been corrected on the letter posted on the District website

Orchard Students Create Civil War Presentations

Students at Orchard School were busy recently, learning about and creating presentations on the Civil War. There were posters that explored the underground railroad, the Battle of Gettysburg, and women of the Civil War. You can see some of them on the Orchard School’s Instagram. The work that went into these presentations was noted by many 5th graders as one of their greatest accomplishments this year during the 5th grade celebration. These 5th graders were also treated to a live magic show from Tom Verner through Magicians Without Borders. Other classes joined the fun via Zoom.

I hope you all have the chance to relax over the coming months and enjoy time with friends and family. We couldn’t have made it through this year without each one of you.

Thank you!