The New School News


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ALL SCHOOL MEETING | Monday October 4 at 6PM, in-person at The New School (details below)

REMINDER | Our next Open House is on Saturday October 23rd at 10:00am.

  • We are looking for student and parent volunteers at this Open House. We will be holding a few mini-classes and running a shortened version of a school day to give attendees a feel for what learning looks like at TNS. Please connect with Christine if you are able to help out.

VACCINE STATUS | Please let us know your child's vaccination status (details below)

CAREER WEEK NETWORKING | Ally and Josie are planning a short whole school intensive focusing on career exploration. Career Week will take place during our Winter Intersession in January and we are currently looking for job shadow experiences, guest speakers, and tours/behind the scenes looks of businesses. If you (or someone you know) would be willing to share what you do with some of our students, connect with Ally or Josie.

“Start where you are. Use what you have. Do what you can.”

-Arthur Ashe

All School Meeting - Oct 4 6:00pm

DINNER AT ASM | Susan and Christine are supplying dinner for the October All School Meeting. On the menu: soup, bread and salad! Susan is bringing chicken and rice soup and Christine is bringing a spicy pumpkin and black bean soup.

Food will be ready at 5:15 so folks can eat before joining the meeting.


- All School Meeting Monday night, October 4, at 6:00 in person at TNS. The meeting will be facilitated by Christine Knowles and Scott Hamann.

- Ice Breaker: A brief community building activity (10)

- Announcements: Open space for anyone in the community to share information with the group. (5)

- Team Reports: This section of the meeting allows our various teams and ad hoc committees to share updates and information with the community. (10)

- Fall Work Day: information about our October Work Day. We will share what jobs are available, what tools we might need, and you'll have the opportunity to sign up. (10)

- Education Report: Teachers will share some learning highlights from the past month of school and offer some insights on things to come including an Intensives Introduction and some info about our January Career Week (15)

- Student Presentations: Stay tuned!

- Weekly Breakfasts: Fern Brown has an idea about ways to promote healthy eating at TNS. (10)

- Fall Fundraising and Volunteer Opportunities: (20)

- Proposed Schedule of ASM for year--in person vs Zoom: (10)

  • In-person November, January, March, May Zoom: December, February, April, June
- Q&A: Time will always be allotted for the community to ask and answer questions. (5)

We will end the large group meeting with Compliments. Following the end of the large group meeting, optional advisory will be available for parents and students to check in with Advisors. (5)

A reminder that anyone in the community can submit items for our agenda prior to the All School Meeting meetings. When submitting an agenda item, please include a brief description of the topic and an estimate of the amount of time you would like to devote to it. Agenda items should be submitted on Fridays before an ASM.

All School Meeting

Monday, Oct. 4th, 6pm

38 York Street

Kennebunk, ME

We look forward to seeing you at the October All School Meeting!

Next Open House - Join us!

Saturday, Oct. 23rd, 10am-1pm

38 York Street

Kennebunk, ME

Join us for our next open house! Invite a friend who might be interested in The New School, and bring them as your guest.


Upcoming Dates for Your Calendar
  • Monday, October 4: All School Meeting 6:00 @ TNS
  • Monday October 11: No School Indigenous Peoples' Day
  • Weekend of October 16/17 Fall Clean-up at TNS
  • Saturday October 23: Fall Open House 10:00-1:00

  • Wednesday, October 27: Teacher Day--students not in school
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Community Values: During the opening weeks of school, students selected five common values to help our learning community be successful. These values, kindness, participation, respect, communication, and empathy, are easy to talk about but sometimes challenging to embody as we go about our day-to-day. Last week, students agreed to focus on improving their participation in learning. What does this look like? Students identified a need to complete assignments, speak up in class, and show up with their materials, ready to learn at the start of class. Being organized, keeping track of assignments, checking email, and paying attention during meetings are some other actions they identified to increase participation. Learning is a collaborative process, and because our classes are small, when one person is not participating, it impacts everyone. Please support one another to enable the fullest participation possible!

Intensives: The teachers have begun brainstorming with our students to figure out what we want to learn about for our longer 3-week intensives scheduled for our winter intersession term in January and February. Planning these learning experiences is more complicated this year than usual because of the uncertainty created by the ongoing pandemic. Many places are still not open to the public. As a school, we need to be mindful of public health and community safety. We will not be travelling outside the United States this year. Some of the factors we need to consider include the vaccine status of students who wish to travel, COVID rates in various locations, transportation logistics, funding and equity, and staff availability. We are encouraging students to identify a topic or theme they would like to explore NOT a destination they wish to travel to. Our planning will need to be flexible enough to respond to the ever changing landscape of the pandemic. Our goal is to have our learning objectives clarified by the end of October. We look forward to sharing more with families at the November ASM.


TRACKING FAMILY COMMITMENT HOURS | Please remember that you can track your household's volunteer hours HERE.

COMMUNITY MATCH DRIVE | The New School is seeking the community's help in order to succeed in our mission to empower students to reach for the best in themselves, love learning, and become responsible stewards of our world. Please invite friends and family to contribute as we rebuild our Tuition Assistance Program.

Nineteen months of pandemic restrictions have created novel economic challenges for the school. Pandemic-related disruptions of our recruitment and marketing efforts resulted in a significantly reduced enrollment for this year. We were unable to host our normal fundraisers during the 2020-2021 school year, including our Annual Silent Auction. Spring fundraising in 2020 was also negatively impacted by COVID-19. Our Tuition Assistance Program has been depleted as a result of greater need from families hit hard by the economic downturn.

Now is the time for innovative solutions.

To rebuild our Tuition Assistance Program, The New School’s Board of Trustees has pledged to match up to $16,200 in donations in a Community Match Drive.

Donations at all levels are greatly appreciated.

Folks can donate right now using this link, or mail a donation to:

The New School – Community Match

38 York Street

Kennebunk, ME 04043

(Please make out the check to The New School, and write “Community Match” in the memo line)


VACCINE STATUS | Please let us know your child’s vaccination status. This impacts decisions we will make about COVID-19 responses and how we will plan our 3-week Intensives.

FLU SHOTS | We encourage students to get their flu shot, so we can avoid illnesses in the school. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has expanded its annual flu shot advice to include everyone over 6 months old. That means you, even if you got both the seasonal flu and the H1N1 vaccine last year, because your immunity decreases over time and this year's shot includes a new strain. We hope that other preventive measures against COVID-19, such as distancing, wearing masks, and washing hands, will help to prevent the spread of all viruses in our communities, but a flu shot is the single best measure to decrease the risk and severity of influenza during this time of increased health risks and uncertainty.


Thank you to Tanya Cattabriga and Fern Brown for managing the school’s pantry. They have developed a spreadsheet of inventory items needed. Please take a moment to check the list and write your name in if you want to shop for something on the list. The spreadsheet is available at: The New School Pantry

October 9 - Kennebunk Resident Household Hazardous Waste Day. The school has a collection of items that need to be disposed of at the Kennebunk Public Services Dept, 36 Sea Road on October 9. Is anyone willing to make the drop off? It is free, but restricted to Kennebunk and Kennebunkport residents. Drop off time is 8:00 AM-1:00 PM. Please check in with Susan Blaisdell or Christine Knowles for specifics.


The New School is an independent, democratically run private high school in Kennebunk, Maine. We learn by doing, and encourage not just academic achievement, but development of the mind, body, and spirit. Our goal is to give TNS students the tools they need to be active, informed citizens of a democracy.

“Education is not preparation for life; education is life itself.

Education, therefore, is a process of living and not a preparation for future living.”

― John Dewey

The New School | Kennebunk, Maine

The New School offers rolling admission, so students can apply any time throughout the year. Parents & Students, please spread the word, let people know all the cool stuff going on here, and invite friends to come visit an Open House!