Volume XVIII Issue 13
Mario Andrade, Superintendent of Schools
March 29, 2023
Dear NSD Families and Staff,
I would like to share with you my comments from the Nashua Board of Education meeting Monday about redistricting. In working through redistricting middle school boundaries last month in anticipation of opening McCarthy Middle School in 2024, we are now looking at redistricting the boundary lines between our elementary schools.
I begin my comments this evening by talking about redistricting just as I did the last time we met.
Redistricting is important to be sure we are leveraging our material and staff resources in the best way possible to support our students. The work of the Elementary School Redistricting Committee is in its infancy. Over the next month, we will be looking to review boundary lines across elementary schools in the current configuration and review boundary lines across a configuration that would include closing one of our elementary schools, Mount Pleasant Elementary School. We need to review both configurations because of the drop in enrollment over the last 10 years and because of the uneven classroom sizes across our elementary schools.
Talk of closing a school creates unease and a lot of questions. This is not an easy process because we recognize our students spend more time in elementary school than at any other level throughout their school years and, understandably, students and their families form special bonds during that time.
I want you to know we are undergoing a thorough review process. In the end, what won’t change is what goes on inside our schools and our classrooms. Wherever this process leads us, I want you to know that students’ academic progress and success will be the guiding factor. We want to be sure we are putting our resources in the right places to best serve our students, their families, and the City of Nashua.
To keep up to date with the development of redistricting plans, please log onto our website at nashua.edu and click on the redistricting page. If you have questions, please be sure to submit a form linked to the nashua.edu home page, and we will get back to you, keeping in mind we will know much more later this school year. I appreciate your patience as we work through our redistricting process.
Enjoy the photos below from the districtwide Youth Art Festival open house last week at South.
Mario Andrade, Ed.D.
Superintendent of Schools
Nashua School District
Nashua Board of Education
New business included a recommendation for the Nashua Board of Education to approve a Nashua Board of Aldermen resolution to bond for an additional $10 million "...to Fund Additional Costs for the Design and Construction of a New Middle School and Renovations and Expansion of Pennichuck Middle School Including the Payment of Costs Incidental or Related Thereto," which passed 5-3 with Ms. Brown, Ms. Darling, and Ms. Johnson voting against the motion.
Also, the Board approved a recommendation from Dr. Andrade to recognize Juneteenth, a federal holiday signed into law in 2021. Students and teachers will observe the holiday in the same manner as a snow day on Monday, June 19, pushing the last day of school to Wednesday, June 21.
The Board also approved a collective bargaining agreement between the Board and the Nashua Teachers' Union, effective retroactively to July 1, 2022 through June 30, 2025.
Committee on Finance and Operations: The Board approved several motions including the installation of a Bill Monsen Memorial Bench at the Nashua HS South athletic wing entrance. Bill Monsen was a former teacher at South who sadly passed away late last year.
Committee on Policy: The Board approved six updated policies.
A: Foundations and Basic Commitments
ACE: Procedural Safeguards: Non-Discrimination on the Basis of Handicap/Disability, as amended and to continue to work to update further
GCCBC-Family and Medical Leave Act
IKE Grade Promotion, Retention, and Acceleration of Students, as amended
IKE-R Graded Promotion, Retention, and Acceleration of Students Appendix
*JJJA Student Extracurricular Eligibility Academic Expectations, as amended
*JJJA-R Student Extracurricular Eligibility Procedures
*updated policies effective as of August 1, 2023, and at that time they will be posted online; in the meantime, current JJJA and JJJA-R policies will remain in effect until then.
The next Nashua Board of Education meeting will be held Monday, April 17, 2023 at Nashua High School North.
March 27, 2023
Nashua Board of Education Meeting
Last Wednesday, our administrative team launched two weeks of presentations to the Nashua Board of Education budget committee. I want to emphasize priorities of our school district are …
· Tier I Systems: curriculum, instruction, and assessment
· Science of Reading
· Portrait of a Learner
· Real-World Learning Experiences
· ELL Services
· Special Education Services
We look forward to presenting to the budget committee on Wednesday an overview of curriculum, CTE, ELL, Athletics, and Special Education.
This week I would like to bring attention to several great happenings in our schools…
First congratulations to Abigail Lee, North Class of 2024, who won gold in the New Hampshire SkillsUSA Culinary Competition, demonstrating high skill in all aspects of menu preparation including classical knife cuts, mincing herbs, and mastering chicken butchery and fabrication, as well as preparing an oven breast of chicken with tarragon sauce dinner.
Nalisha Iraola, North Class of 2023, took the silver, demonstrating high skill alongside Abby in the statewide competition. Because of their success, they are now eligible for scholarships to Johnson & Wales University in Rhode Island, and the Culinary Institute of America in New York.
Great work Abby and Nalisha!
Congratulations to Chelsea Folini, math teacher at Pennichuck Middle School, who was presented the Richard C. Evans Distinguished Mathematics Educator Award.
The New Hampshire Teachers of Mathematics presented Chelsea the highly regarded award at its annual spring conference last week in Exeter. The Evans Award recognizes creativity and innovation in the teaching of mathematics. Again, congratulations, Chelsea!
Over these last few weeks, our students have been taking part in several great, statewide events, including MATHCOUNTS, Destination Imagination, and New Hampshire Scripps Spelling Bee. It is great to see our students step up and participate, often independently, to challenge themselves academically and creatively to develop their presentation, communication, and technical skills and really think outside of the box. Congratulations to our students who take on the added challenge.
The most important days of the school year have been announced:
North Class of 2023 will graduate Monday, June 12 and South Class of 2023 will graduate Tuesday, June 13. We are looking forward to sunny days at Stellos Stadium for our graduates and their families.
CLiF Two-Sentence Winter Writing Winners
Congratulations to Camilla and her grade 6 classmates from Fairgrounds Middle School!
Camilla Esposito was selected among more than 700 entries as the winner of the CLiF (Children's Literacy Foundation of Waterbury Center, Vermont) Two-Sentence Winter Writing Contest. Mason Ferrante, Nathan Freidman, Molly Hickey, and Olivia Mangahas were named finalists.
The challenge was to write exactly two sentences, telling a story about winter. The exactly two sentences could be about something you like to do in winter, about a favorite winter memory, or a story straight out of the writer's imagination. Simplicity extraordinaire! Once again, congratulations to Camilla and her classmates for their creative brevity in storytelling.
Pictured (L to R) above: Olivia Mangahas, Camilla Esposito, Molly Hickey, Nathan Freidman, and Mason Ferrante.