The Gilbert School E-News

June 2023

Dear Students & Families,

It's hard to believe that June is already upon us, and in just a couple of short weeks we'll be saying goodbye to depart for the summer. For some students - our seniors - graduation may be the last time we see you for awhile. Until, perhaps, we cross paths again on a crisp, fall day at a future TGS homecoming game, when we see you cheering on the Yellowjackets in the spirit of a true fan of the Blue and the Gold. But for now, all students - not just seniors - need to finish strong by taking finals, turning in materials & equipment, and completing your obligations. To find out more information, click on the buttons below to read the parent letter from Principal Lewis, and view the final exam schedule.

So, until our final dismissal bell of the year, enjoy the warm weather and the end of the school year celebrations, but remember to stay focused, and study hard for exams!


Greg Shugrue, Head of School

The Gilbert School

Grade 8 Promotion Ceremony is 6/16

Grade 8 Promotion is taking place on June 16th at 10:00 am. Students should arrive at the school for 9:00 that morning dressed to impress. Families are welcome to join in on the celebration. All of the teachers and staff want to wish them all the best of luck for the next chapter of their lives! CONGRATULATIONS!

TGS Senior Kohana Mehl McKee Soon To Be Published

Gilbert senior Kohana Mehl-McKee is a soon-to-be published poet! Not only will her poem be published in Poetry By Chance: An Anthology of Poems Powered by Metaphor Dice, but an excerpt of her work will be featured on the back of the book! Kohana wrote her "Suffocating Phoenix" in Creative Writing. The book comes out this July on Amazon.

Did You Hear?

Bob Snyder is retiring after serving for three decades as TGS’s Athletic Trainer. Bob was honored for his service and tremendous impact on our learning community by having the 2023 Yearbook dedicated to him. Here is an article that ran in The Republican American for those that missed it. Congratulations on your retirement, Bob!

Gilbert Business teacher Mrs. Samantha Zaprzalka was honored and recognized as TGS’s 2023-2024 Teacher of the Year (TOTY). Sam teaches business classes, leads an active Student Council, and is a marvelous teacher and a better person who will represent the teaching staff well next year as our TOTY. Republican American subscribers can read more about Mrs. Zaprzalka here.

Ms. Debra Lewis was recognized by the Connecticut Association of Schools (CAS) as the winner of the William Cieslukowski Outstanding First-Year Principal Award. Deb’s dedication, passion, and commitment to TGS and its students were recognized by a panel of screeners at CAS and ultimately by a visiting committee visiting here and the other semifinalists.

Debra Lewis is also the 2023 recipient of the CASL Administrator's Award. She will receive her award at the annual CASL Spring Fling held on June 1, 2023 in Rocky Hill. This award honors an administrator "who provides necessary support for improving school library services through encouragement and adequate funding for program maintenance and improvement" (CASL).

Mr. Affie Selected For GenCyber Teacher Academy Program

The Gilbert School's own Mr. Affie has been selected to participate in the GenCyber Teacher Academy this Summer. Only 50% of applicants are accepted to participate in the five day camp on computing and cybersecurity. The program, sponsored by the University of New Haven, will encompass the training of STEM high school teachers to incorporate cybersecurity concepts in their lesson plans, and more. Mr. Affie, our CTE/Art/Music Department Chair, hopes to create an Intro to Computing class for GTS students in the 2024-2025 school year. Way to go, Mr. Affie!

Hats Off To Our TGS Award Recipients!

On May 17th the W.L. Gilbert School Corporation recognized and celebrated our winners of various awards. Many of the awards were presented at an earlier celebration ceremony, but the board still wanted to recognize and celebrate our wonderful students and their achievements this year. The recipients are pictured below. Congratulations to all!
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Criteria: The student who achieves the highest academic ranking among the graduating class, thereby achieving the honor of delivering the valedictory address at commencement.

Congratulations Elizabeth Daigle!

2023 SCSU College & Career Readiness Summer Institute

All high school students are invited to participate in the

2023 SCSU College & Career Readiness Summer Institute includes:

Location: Southern Connecticut State University Campus

Date and Time: TUESDAY, AUGUST 1, 2023 between 9 AM – 3 PM

Registration link

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May Wingman Day Outdoor Fun!

On May 11th, the entire TGS community had the opportunity to have some fun in the sun with their classmates. There was an enormous inflatable obstacle course, “ax” throw, bungee run, football toss, and cornhole boards. Each grade spent one hour of the day outside to partake in the various activities, and surely created many memories.

Payton Wells Wins U.S. Army Award

Payton Wells with his award from the U.S. Army for the most consecutive push-ups. Congratulations Payton!
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National Junior Honor Society Inducts New Members

The National Junior Honor Society held their 2023 induction ceremony on May 25. Congratulations to our newest NJHS inductees who were chosen based on their commitment to scholarship, leadership, citizenship, service, and character: Armonia Ettanji, Reed Girardin, Bella Frazine, Natalie Kent, Francesca Monaco, and Cole Scacca.

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Middle School Wiffle Ball Tournament

The National Junior Honor Society is currently raising money to help the Breast Cancer Research Foundation by sponsoring a Middle School Wiffle Ball Tournament. Students who donate will be able to attend the games and possibly be chosen for a team. Donations can be made to Advisory teachers through June 7.

What's Been Happening at the Middle School?

Wingman Activity Day was May 11th
    • Students in grades 7-12 participated in a whole school Wingman Activity with events sponsored by the CT National Guard

Pearson’s 6th graders visited TGS on May 23rd
    • The incoming 7th grade class toured the building and learned about what to expect in middle school

    • Select 7th and 8th graders served as tour group captains as they explored the building

8th Grade Field Trip May 26th
    • TGS 8th graders went on a class trip to Lake Compounce

Summer school
    • Counselor and Administrators are in the process of reviewing grades and determining those those students who are recommended or required to attend the summer school program

    • If deemed eligible, parents will receive a notice in early June

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“Your future is created by what you do today, not tomorrow.”

- Unknown

It’s a GREAT Day to be a Yellowjacket!

By Buckley Morgan, Gilbert Director of Athletics

June is here and the school house is all abuzz with all the end of year activities. The Athletic Department is no different. We are busy putting together next school year's Fall and Winter competition schedules and all the Spring recognition events...

Spring sports for Gilbert are now complete with the exception of some awards ceremonies. All of our student athletes had a great season and seemed to enjoy being outdoors and playing sports. The Baseball team played a game at Dunkin Donuts Park in Hartford.

Cross Country had one athlete who qualified for the Class S championships and is attending that soon. We wish them luck and great success in their track and field event. Jeb Leach was selected for All-Star status in the 110 Meter Hurdle.

Girls Softball struggled through the season but had some amazing games and were great fun to watch here at our home field. Look out next year for this team's potential. The Gilbert Girls Tennis team had almost a whole team this year. The girls were mostly new to the sport and they played every match with their best effort and a tremendous amount of grace and good sportsmanship.

The Boys Baseball team started this season with a new head coach. Coach Jorge Pimintel. He jumped in with both feet and is doing a great job. It will take a couple years for the team to get back to what it once was but I am sure Coach Pimentel will get them there.

On Sunday May 7 the 40th Annual Connecticut High School Scholar Athlete Awards Program was held at the Aqua Turf. Two of Gilbert's highest achievers in academics and athletics were honored at this event, seniors Jebediah Leach and Kelsey Vetter. Congratulations to both!

On May 31 the Gilbert Spring Sports Award Ceremony was conducted. Congratulations to all of our Spring sports winners. Below are the spring season Scholar Athlete awardees. These students represent excellence on the field and in the classroom. To be a scholar athlete they must meet all the requirements to be a Varsity player and obtain a place on the Honors or High Honors list academically. We are proud of all of our athletes but these athletes are a success above and beyond their peers.
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June 1 (6:00 pm) - Berkshire All-Star Banquet - The following Gilbert All-Stars and their parents are invited to attend this event. Emily Arel (Girls Basketball), Sam Goncalves (Wrestling), Hosam Abdullah(Wrestling), and Jonathan Eagan (wrestling). Ajla Gutic (Track & Field) Great job being selected for All-Star status.

June 3 -The Gilbert School Athletics Department will hold its annual Gilbert Blue and Gold Golf Fundraiser. We had 124 golfers last year and hope to increase that number this year. Everyone has a great time playing golf, enjoying dinner and participating in all the post tournament raffles. If you would like to play click here for more information and to register or contact the Director of Athletics at the email below.

June 6 (4:30 pm, auditorium) - A Final Farewell to Bob Snyder. Bob has been with Gilbert as the Trainer for twenty four years. He is going to be missed. All current and past athletes, coaches, faculty and community members who knew Bob are invited to come and thank Bob and participate in the celebration.

June 6 (5:30 pm) - Senior Athletes Banquet to be held in the Gilbert Cafeteria and catered by the Railway Cafe. Sponsored by the Lions Club. All Senior student athletes and their guests are invited. There will be awards handed out at this final Senior Athletics recognition ceremony. Athletes' meals are paid for by the Lions Club.

I wish all of you a very exciting summer filled with sun and great times. I am looking forward to the 2023/2024 school year and all it brings with it. Have a safe summer.

For Gilbert specific updates, navigate to and follow the TGS Athletic Department Facebook page, our Twitter page, Instagram, or visit the Gilbert Athletics webpage. You will find the athletics handbook on the website. 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 Joshua Penn at:

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Congratulations to Four of our International Graduates!

By Debra LaRoche Walls, Dean of Admissions

It’s always a proud and bittersweet moment to congratulate international students who have become like family over the many years they have been students with The Gilbert School. On Thursday night, June 15, 2023, seniors from The Gilbert School will walk across the auditorium stage to receive their deserving Gilbert diploma.

This year, the international program is saying goodbye and best wishes to four amazing students who offered great contributions to Gilbert; Ivan Lyu, from China will be attending Arizona State University, Evan Zhao from China will be attending SUNY University of Buffalo, NY, Jhonatan Silveira from Brazil will attend Barry University in Miami, FL and Youssef Nahali from Qatar is waiting for his acceptance from colleges in PA, FL and CA.

We thank each of these students for the cultural diversity that they shared with our school community and residence life family representing their individual countries. The international staff wishes Ivan, Evan, Jhonatan and Youssef the very best as they move forward and continue with their US educational college goals! Congratulations to all of The Gilbert School graduates!

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What's Been Happening at the High School?

The Advanced Placement course exams concluded this month
    • A total of 96 Advanced Placement exams were completed in nine different subject areas!

Counselors met with juniors about:
    • Post-secondary options (college, trade/tech schools, gap year programs, employment, apprenticeships, etc.)

    • Registering for “Raise.Memicro scholarships

    • Requesting teacher letters of recommendation for college applications

Course Scheduling for the 2023-24 school year
    • Counselors are continuing to ensure full class schedules are complete for next year

Wingman Activity Day May 11th
    • Students in grades 7-12 participated in a whole school Wingman and CT National Guard sponsored activity day

Summer school
    • Counselors and Administrators are reviewing student final grades to determine eligibility

    • The Summer School remediation recommendations will be sent in early June (if applicable)

JUNIORS: School Day SAT Scores

TGS junior students took the Connecticut School Day SAT on Wednesday March 23. Most scores became available on College Board on April 15. See the links below for additional testing dates off campus, and free customized online test prep through Khan Academy.


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

In spring 2023, all junior students participated in the Connecticut 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.

GRADES 9-12: Upcoming College Fairs

Hundreds of colleges and universities from the US and worldwide will be ready and waiting to talk with you at an upcoming in-person college fair. Don't miss these free, one-day events for high school students and families. See the info about the next fair below.

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News From The TGS Health Office

By Kelli Gilbert RN BSN, Director of Health Services

Physicals for Students in Grade 9

All students in Grade 9 need to have a physical examination by their physician. “Blue” physical forms should be submitted to the nurse’s office before they start Grade 10. The physical forms can be found in physician’s offices, TGS main office and nurses office, and the website. If you have any questions regarding this state mandated requirement, please contact the nurses. If your child has already had a physical and you would like to have your physician fax a copy, the confidential direct fax number is 860 738 9651.

Sports Physicals

Does your child do a sport? Don’t forget to book your sports physical this summer! Students need a current physical on file in the nurse’s office to try out for a fall sport. Physicals should be dated within 13 months.

Important Dates to Remember

Graduation Practice

6/14 & 6/15 - 8:30am to 11am

8th Grade Promotion Practice

6/14 & 6/15 - 11am to 12pm



8th Grade Promotion


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