January 21, 2020

Lyme-Old Lyme Schools Asked to Consider Purchase of Lyme Academy-Owned 26+ Acres on Lyme St.

Aerial photo of the 26.31 acres for sale by Lyme Academy of Fine Arts taken from the Lyman Real Estate property listing and published with their permission.

OLD LYME — As part of its reinvention efforts over the past several months, Lyme Academy of Fine Arts officials recently approached the Lyme-Old Lyme Board of Education inquiring whether the district would be interested in purchasing academy-owned land abutting the public school campus off Lyme Street.

The academy owns approximately 39 acres of land across the street from its main campus, which is also on Lyme Street. Approximately 26 acres of that land has been listed for $5 million through the Lyman Real Estate group

Read the full story by Mary Biekert and published Jan. 10 on TheDay.com at this link.

Share

‘The Country School’ Hosts Open House Jan. 26, All Welcome

MADISON — The Country School jn Madison is holding an Open House Sunday, Jan. 26, from 1 to 3:30 p.m.

This is an opportunity to meet engaged students and passionate teachers. Also, attendees can learn about the rigorous academic program and commitment to honoring the creativity, sense of wonder, and exuberance of childhood.

MADISON — Learn about the school’s signature programs – STEAM, Elmore Leadership, Outdoor Education, and Public Speaking – and their rich offerings in the arts and athletics.

Tour the transformed 23-acre campus and hear how alumni are thriving at top high schools and colleges across the country.

Founded in 1955, The Country School is a coeducational, independent day school serving students in PreSchool through Grade 8. To learn more and register, visit this link.

Share

Lyme-Old Lyme Schools Seniors Cravinho, Wells Receive Prestigious Superintendent/Student Recognition Awards

Lyme-Old Lyme Schools Superintendent Ian Neviaser stands with CAPPS Superintendent / Student Recognition Awardees Elizabeth Cravinho and Trevor Wells after the students had received their awards at a ceremony held Dec. 10, in Old Saybrok.

LYME/OLD LYME — (Press Release) Elizabeth Cravinho and Trevor Wells, students at Lyme-Old Lyme High School, have been awarded the Connecticut Association of Public School Superintendents’ (CAPSS) Superintendent/Student Recognition Award for leadership service to the school, academic prowess relative to ability, and service to others in the community at a ceremony held Dec. 10, 2019 at Saybrook Point Inn.

Ian Neviaser, Superintendent of Lyme-Old Lyme Schools, made the presentation as part of a program designed by school administrators to recognize students who have served their schools and communities while maintaining good scholastic progress.

The Superintendent/Student Recognition Program awards a Certificate of Excellence at the discretion of the local superintendent of schools according to a distribution formula set for all state school districts. Awards are generally given during American Education Week in November in order to provide a meaningful focus for each school district and to enhance the quality of the certificate.

Cravinho’s citation states:

Elizabeth Cravinho is not to be underestimated. She may present as a petite young woman but beware, for she is an energetic and determined dynamo. When you give her a task, consider it done. This energy level comes in handy when you consider all that she juggles: USAG Junior Olympic Gymnast, Concert Band President, Spanish Honor Society Vice President, as well as being a member of the National Honor Society, Student Advisory Council and Student Leaders, all while taking a challenging academic schedule and exploring her career aspiration of Dentistry.

Even when she took a risk and decided to give up gymnastics, which she loved and had participated in her entire life, she was planning how to spend her new-found time by taking advantage of opportunities within Lyme-Old Lyme High School and the Lyme and Old Lyme communities. Her altruistic nature motivates her to volunteer at Christ the King Church, Phoebe Griffin Noyes Library and Special Olympics.
 
This genuine young woman is as good as they come. She has an unprecedented work ethic, strong beliefs and the conviction to stand up for them and a sense of purpose to know it is her responsibility to make things happen in her own life while knowing when others need a helping hand.

Wells’s citation states:

Trevor Wells is a leader and role model at Lyme-Old Lyme High School known for his determined work ethic, leadership and his undying energy and involvement in so many worthy causes. A National Honor Society member and President of the Class of 2020, Trevor takes on the most rigorous courses and thrives in an academic environment. He is motivated by his strong curiosity and thirst for knowledge but he is just as committed to goodwill and kindness. Trevor has taken every opportunity here at Lyme-Old Lyme High School; for example, he loves to explore other points of view and takes three languages, Latin, Spanish and Mandarin – and performs excellently in all three. 

Trevor is an athlete and an outstanding member of this community who has been recognized repeatedly with leadership roles in many areas. He dedicates numerous hours to his role as Class President, captain of the cross-country team and the outdoor track team, co-founder of the Recycling Committee, and assistant coach for the youth lacrosse team. Trevor takes initiative and is dedicated in all his endeavors, Trevor is a natural leader, garnering immediate respect from his peers, as he steps into these positions with passion and grace. 

Trevor has been instrumental in the success of so many clubs and activities and has truly made a mark here within the Lyme-Old Lyme High School community. His impact has been broad and extensive, and his leadership and unstoppable energy have benefited so many. 

CAPSS, the statewide school superintendents’ professional organization, is based in West Hartford and provides professional development, personal support, statewide conferences, legislative information and educational services to its membership.

Share

Country School’s Goodman of Old Lyme Earns All-America Status at National X-Country Championships

Third-graders Laila Goodman of Old Lyme and Tillie Killam of Madison (pictured above) display their All-American awards received Dec. 14 when they took 1st and 9th place respectively in the Junior Olympics Cross Country Championships held in Madison, Wis.

OLD LYME — This past Saturday (Dec. 14), in cold and windy conditions in Madison, Wis., Laila Goodman of Old Lyme and Tillie Killam of Madison earned All-America status by taking 1st and 9th place respectively among 157 runners in the Junior Olympics (JO) Cross-Country Championships. Both girls are in third grade at The Country School in Madison, Conn.

Having finished 8th in the same competition last year in Reno, Nev., Goodman led the 7-8 girls’ race this year from start to finish, fending off challenges from top runners from California, New York, and 42 states to finish the 2K course in 8:01, five seconds ahead of the 2nd place finisher.

Going to the National JOs for the first time, Killam needed a top-25 finish to become Country School’s third-ever All-American, and she earned it with a well-paced race and a fast finishing kick to flash across the line in 8:29.

Fellow classmate Lillian Clare of Madison raced in the 9-10 year-old division and blitzed the 3K course in 13:10 to take 94th out of 242 runners. Clare, Goodman and Killam qualified for Nationals by finishing in the top 30 in Connecticut and then the top 30 in Region 1, which includes all of New England, Long Island and the Adirondacks.

In national competition, Clare, Goodman, Killam and all Country School students run for Litchfield Track Club, whose 8 and Under girls cross-country team, led by Goodman and Killam, captured 4th place in the team competition Saturday against all the club teams in the United States.

The competition was held at the Yahara Hills Golf Course in Madison, Wis. Over 4,000 youth runners in ages 7 to 18 took part in the all-day competition.

In addition to Goodman and Killam, the Litchfield Track Club 8 & Under girls team included Gwen Krukar (Goshen) 65th, Alexa Johnston (Litchfield) 102, and Attie Bergin (Goshen) 115th. There were a total of 157 finishers in their race.

The team advanced to the finals by winning the Connecticut Association meet and placing 2nd in the Region 1 Championships on Long Island in November.

Due to a USATF rule that states to compete in a national event, a runner must turn age seven by December of that year, Country School 1st grader Liv Killam could not compete after qualifying for Nationals.

Also competing for Litchfield Track Club in Wisconsin were Annecy Vlieks of Madison (12:03 for 94th, 11-12 girls), Abbie Johnston (105th, 13-14 girls), and Branford’s Liam Watson (188th, 11-12 boys).

Founded in 1955, The Country School serves 200 students in PreSchool-Grade 8 on its 23-acre campus in Madison. The Country School is committed to active, hands-on learning and a vigorous curriculum that engages the whole child. Signature programs such as Elmore Leadership, Public Speaking, STEAM, and Outdoor Education help prepare students for success in high school and beyond. See our community in action during our winter Open House on January 26 from 1-3:30 p.m.

For more information, visit www.thecountryschool.org.

Share

Lyme-Old Lyme Schools Move Forward with Plans for $2.3 Million Artificial Turf Field

This playing field behind Lyme-Old Lyme High School is the proposed site of the turf field.

OLD LYME — The Lyme-Old Lyme Board of Education is moving forward with a plan to build a more than $2 million artificial turf athletic field, a project school officials say will conserve groundwater without placing a burden on taxpayers.

Superintendent Ian Neviaser said last week that the board has almost amassed enough money in the district’s undesignated capital expense fund to build the field. For the past two decades, the district has typically funneled 1 percent of its annual budget into the fund to help finance larger projects and avoid budget increases or the need to bond, he said.

The fund balance is currently …

Read the full article by Mary Biekert and published on theday.com Dec. 9 at this link.

Share

Linderman Elected Chairman of the Lyme-Old Lyme Schools Board of Education

Diane Linderman

OLD LYME — During Wednesday evening’s regular Region 18 Board of Education meeting, members held an election to determine who would hold the four officer positions. The results of the election were as follows:

Chairman: Diane Linderman

Vice-Chairman: Martha Shoemaker

Secretary: Steve Wilson

Treasurer: Jean Wilczynski

Linderman replaces Michelle ‘Mimi’ Roche, who did not run for re-election in the November 2019 election. Linderman was previously vice-chairman and Shoemaker served as Secretary.

Steve Wilson, who was elected to the board for the first time in November, takes on the position of secretary and Wilczynski continues in her role as treasurer.

 

Share

Lyme-Old Lyme Board of Education Will Seat New Members, Elect Officers, at Meeting Tonight

An elction will be held at Wednesday’s BOE meeting to determine the successor to outgoing Region 18 Board of Education Chairman Michelle “Mimi” Roche, pictured above.

LYME-OLD LYME — Three new members representing Old Lyme will take their seats at the Region 18 Board of Education meeting this evening.

Jennifer Miller, Suzanne Thompson and Steven Wilson, all Republicans, will replace Michelle Roche, the current Chair and a Democrat, alomg with Stacey Winchell and Erick Cushman, both Republicans. None of the three retiring members opted to run for re-election in the Nov. 5 election.

Mary Powell-St. Louis, a Republican and one of the two Lyme board members, was re-elected unopposed in the November election.

One of the first items of business at the Dec. 4 meeting, which starts at 6:30 p.m. in the Center School Board of Education Meeting Room, will be the election of officers for the coming year. Voting for the positions of Chair, Vice-Chair, Treasurer and Secretary will be the three new members along with incumbents Powell-St. Louis and Stacey Leonardo (D), who both represent Lyme, and Rick Goulding, Diane Linderman, Jean Wilczynski and Martha Shoemaker, who are all Democrats and represent Old Lyme.

Linderman is currently Vice-Chair, Wilczynski serves as Treasurer, and Shoemaker is Secretary.

Share

Engineering Firm to Present Work to Date on Turf Field Project at Tonight’s BOE Meeting, Public Welcome

This playing field behind Lyme-Old Lyme High School is the proposed site of the turf field, which will be discussed at the Region 18 Board of Education meeting Wednesday evening. The engineering firm Milone and MacBroom will present information regarding the project at the meeting.

LYME-OLD LYME — (Based on a Press Release from Lyme-Old Lyme Schools) In the November 2017 issue of  ‘Focus on Education’, Lyme-Old Lyme Schools published an article about the background to the proposed installation of a turf field.  The article has now been updated to reflect recent actions by the Region 18 Board of Education.

If you have attended any of the Lyme-Old Lyme recent athletic contests, you may have noticed that Lyme-Old Lyme High School has two of the finest grass playing surfaces in the area. These surfaces are maintained without the use of any pesticides and with the added burden of supporting daily practices by multiple athletic teams and physical education programs. Over the past few years, Region 18’s efforts to support these fields for safe play has been a struggle.

Despite being so close to the Connecticut River and Long Island Sound, the greatest challenge in maintaining Region 18 playing fields is a limited water supply. Even with a newly-drilled well, Lyme-Old Lyme Schools continue to find that their water needs — which support regular water usage (cooking, toilets, sinks, etc.) for their main campus, Old Lyme’s Town Hall and Fire Department, Lymes’ Youth Service Bureau, and the Old Lyme Historical Society, combined with the need to irrigate their playing fields — have exceeded their water system capacity.

During two recent summers, Region 18 had to purchase tanker trucks of water to avoid losing the grass on their athletic fields. It was this water supply issue that pushed the Region 18 Board of Education to develop a special committee to review and research the current state of the district’s athletic fields and develop a long-term plan to address its water issues.

This committee, which included 22 members, was made up of people from the community, board of education representatives, and school employees. The committee’s charge was to evaluate the district’s three multipurpose athletic fields and develop a recommendation for facility improvements, which best serves the long-term needs of the school district and the community.

The committee’s work was supported by the expertise of an engineering firm, which evaluated all aspects of Region 18’s facility including water sources, field use, and field location. The committee recommended utilizing a two-pronged approach to address water usage and the demands of Lyme-Old Lyme Schools’ athletic and physical education programs.

The field between the middle and high schools is one of the district’s two irrigated fields.

At their October 2017 meeting, the Region 18 Board of Education voted to approve the use of funds to support the design and bidding of a dedicated system that would supply water to the district’s two irrigated athletic fields, leaving the remainder of their water supply for potable use.

In June 2019, after many months of work with town committees, as well as with the neighbors of Lyme-Old Lyme Schools, who share ownership of the pond behind the high school, a pump system was installed that allows the district to use a limited amount of pond water to supplement its irrigation water supply. During the summer of 2019, this new system was successfully utilized to support the irrigation of two of the district’s three fields.

The varsity field behind Center School is the second of the district’s two irrigated fields.

Also at their October 2017 meeting, the board of education approved the committee’s second recommendation to pursue the concept of submitting an artificial turf field project to the Town of Old Lyme commissions for approval with associated design firm support. The second recommendation will allow the district to pursue the concept of installing a synthetic field behind Lyme-Old Lyme High School allowing multiple teams to practice and play at the same time regardless of the weather.

This proposal will also reduce the overuse of the two grass fields whose irrigation needs have exceeded our water supply. The construction of such a playing surface would be funded from the board’s sinking fund for capital projects and therefore would not impact the annual budget. The funding for this second recommendation was approved at the October 2019 board of education meeting.

At that meeting, the Board of Education approved the hiring of Milone and MacBroom to complete the initial artificial field design as well as to obtain local commission approvals. This next step will be completed during the 2019-2020 fiscal year. Following this phase of the project, Lyme-Old Lyme Schools will be prepared to complete the construction documents, refine the project estimate, and establish a project timeline for field installation.

As Lyme-Old Lyme Schools move forward with this project, the board looks forward to input from the community. At the Wednesday, Dec. 4, board of education meeting, Milone and MacBroom will present information regarding this project. The public is encouraged to attend.

Once the initial design phase is complete, there will be multiple opportunities to learn about the process as well as ask questions of the design firm. For more information, visit Region18.org.

Share

Republicans Sweep All Seats in Old Lyme, Including Board of Education

The Old Lyme Republicans have much to celebrate tonight. They won every single contested seat in a bitterly fought election.  The full results, with the winners in bold and marked with an asterisk, were as follows:

FIRST SELECTMAN:

Bonnie Reemsnyder (D): 1,403

*Tim Griswold (R): 1,774

SELECTMAN:

*Mary Jo Nosal (D): 1,495

*Chris Kerr (R): 1,676

TREASURER:

Reiter (D): 1430

Griswold (R): 1691

TAX COLLECTOR:

Michaelson (D): 1262

*Tooker (R): 1905

BOARD OF FINANCE:

Rubino (D): 1361

Sturges (R): 1768

Reiter (D): 1367

*Kelsey (R): 1695

BOARD OF FINANCE ALTERNATES:

*Burrows (D): 1532

*Read (R): 1921

Taliento (D): 1430

*Olson (D): 1777

BOARD OF ASSESSMENT APPEALS

*Evers, Jr. (R): (R): 2235

PLANNING COMMISSION
5-Year Term beginning 2019

Klose (D): 1347

*Ross: (R): 1712

5-Year Term beginning 2020

Lampos: 1409

*Thompson: 1662

ZONING COMMISSION:
5-Year Term beginning 2019

Gemme: 1267

*Tinnerello: 1721

5-Year Term beginning 2020

Cable: 1366

*Miller: 1609

ZONING BOARD OF APPEALS
5-Year Term beginning 2019

Lowry (D): 1357

*Hutchinson (U): 1616

5-Year Term beginning 2019

Tracey (D): 1389

*Dix (R): 1558

Alternates

*Carney (R): 2174

*Johnston (R): 2007

REGION 18 BOARD OF EDUCATION

Bowman (D): 1471

*Thompson (R): 1600

Panzara-Griswold (D): 1400

*Miller (R): 1512

Kemp (R): 1341

*Wilson (R): 1518

Share

Lyme-Old Lyme Board of Education Candidates Respond to our Questions

LYME/OLD LYME — In keeping with our now 16-year tradition and in the interests of increasing voter knowledge prior to next week’s important election, we posed three questions in writing to the candidates for the Region 18 Board of Education as follows:

  1. What are the three major issues in Lyme-Old Lyme Schools that you are currently aware of, which require resolution during your potential term of office?  Please list and explain each one briefly in order of importance.
  2. Regarding Question 1, explain more about your choice of the issue of most importance and how you think it should be resolved.
  3. What do you see as the main relevant skills and character attributes that you will bring to the position if elected?

We gave a 250-word limit for the response to each question to which each candidate strictly adhered: we are most appreciative of that.

Three of the board of education incumbents representing Old Lyme — the current chair Michelle ‘Mimi’ Roche, Erick Cushman and Stacey Winchell — are not seeking re-election. There are six candidates running for these three open Old Lyme seats.

Mary Powell-St. Louis, who is a board of education incumbent representing Lyme, is running uncontested in that town.  We are especially pleased that she chose to respond to our questions since she has no opponent.

We are delighted that all the candidates except one responded to our questions in a timely manner.  We understand why Lorianne Panzara-Griswold did not respond to our questions, but as a gesture of our care and concern for her situation, we are publishing a Letter to the Editor written to LymeLine.com by her recently.

We sincerely thank the candidates who responded and are pleased to publish their responses today accompanied by their respective biographies and photos.

Click on the links below to read each candidate’s responses:

Candidates running for Old Lyme seats, none of whom is an incumbent

Sarah Bowman (D)

Lorianne Panzara Griswold (D):

Jason Kemp (D)

Jennifer Miller (R)

Suzanne Thompson (R)

Steve Wilson (R)

Candidate running for Lyme seat (incumbent)

Mary Powell St. Louis (R)

We should also state that, again in keeping with our long-held tradition, we will not be making any candidate endorsements.

Share

Letter to the Editor: If Elected, BOE Candidate Panzara-Griswold Will Focus on “Top-Quality Education … Accessible to all … Efficient & Affordable,”

To the Editor:

The greatest joy of my personal life has been raising my two children. The most fulfilling part of my career/volunteer life has been serving the needs of young community members. If elected to the Region 18 Board of Education, I will advocate for our kids and help establish a vision for our schools, focusing on a top-quality education that is accessible to all children, efficient, and affordable for our community.

I have spent the last 25 years serving the needs of our most vulnerable individuals, including disadvantaged teenagers, young offenders, and persons with intellectual disabilities.  They have taught me many things, including patience, cooperation, and empathy.  I embrace these lessons as I pursue public service.

I’m a strong supporter of the arts–in the community, the schools and in my work as a counselor and advocate.  In 2010, I established a program for persons with Intellectual disabilities which embraces a holistic model of arts-based programming.  To witness these individuals express themselves through their chosen art form is truly amazing! 

I feel lucky to live in Old Lyme, and appreciate a school system that recognizes the importance of a diverse education. I hope to have your support on November 5th!

Sincerely,

Lorianne Panzara-Griswold,
Old Lyme.

Share

Vote for Old Lyme’s Rhyleigh Russell in the ‘Celebration of Music National Competition’!

Rhyleigh Russell

OLD LYME — Rhyleigh Russell of Old Lyme is a finalist in the Celebration of Music National Competition. She is 14-years-old and a freshman at Lyme Old Lyme High School (LOLHS), where she is one of the varsity goalkeepers on the LOLHS soccer team.

Russell has four siblings and notes in her biography on the Celebration of Music website, “My whole family runs on music never going a day without it or discussing it in some manner.”

She also explains her passion for music in her biography, saying, “My goal with every performance is that I’m making someone proud or connecting with someone who may be uplifted in some way. My purpose is to help as many people as I can through music and performance whether its a smile on my parents face, a tear rolling down someone’s face because they don’t feel alone or to uplift a spirit. Everything I sing is with purpose and emotion.”

The contest is a talent search that showcases the best young musical talent across America. Singers, musicians, bands, and dancers between the ages of four and 25 are all encouraged to enter in their city by submitting an audition tape.

The Celebration of Music concept was inspired by Ethan Bortnick and his desire to give young musicians the same opportunities PBS afforded him. The winner will be announced Nov. 3 by Bortnick at the Bushnell in Hartford.

Voting is still open in the contest and Rhyleigh and her family would love LymeLine.com readers to vote for her.

Read Rhyleigh’s biography at this link and vote for her at the link at the foot of the page!

Good luck, Rhyleigh!

 

Share

Old Lyme Boy’s Soccer Notches Convincing Win Over N. Branford in Season Opener

Old Lyme Boys Soccer opened their 2019-20 season at North Branford High School with a crushing defeat of the Thunderbirds by 10-0

Angus Tresnan scored two goals for the Wildcats, joining teammates Mike Milazzo, Sam Roth, Garrett Smith, Jesper Silberberg, Anders Silberberg, Aidan Kerrigan, Nevin Joshy and Paul Nelson in the scoring bonanza.
In goal for Old Lyme was senior Ryan Tetreault and freshman Jonah Lathrop, the latter of whom had one save for the Wildcats.
Share

Lyme Academy Relaunches Itself with Fall Program of 33 Classes

There will be opportunities to paint ‘en plein air’ for all ages in Lyme Academy’s Fall Program.

OLD LYME – Whether with brushstrokes or keystrokes as their instrument of choice, artists can learn and hone their craft at the renamed Lyme Academy of Fine Arts, which is reinventing itself with the launch of a full slate of courses for the upcoming fall semester. The first classes start Sept. 23.

In an effort to define itself anew while staying true to its core values, the academy will offer 33 courses covering traditional arts curriculum and new digital offerings – the best of art traditions and the newest innovations.

File photo of the Chandler Academic Center, which comprises part of the Lyme Academy of Fine Arts.

Lyme Academy of Fine Arts announced in July that its campus will remain open and a rebuilding initiative is underway in the wake of the school’s disaffiliation from the University of New Haven (UNH). The UNH decision to end its relationship with the academy was made public in August of 2018.

The incorporation of new intensive courses in digital art with a focus on the Adobe Creative Suite is part of efforts to modernize offerings in a world where many use digital programs in their careers and artistic endeavors.

Innovation classes will train students on Adobe programs including Photoshop, Illustrator, Acrobat, InDesign and Premiere to offer those of all generations career advancement training in the Internet age.

These offerings will also include a Social Media for Creatives course taught by Maria Miranda, the Creative Director and Founder of marketing agency Miranda Creative, Inc., who is excited to join the staff as it works to train artists in all mediums including emerging digital ones.

“As principal and creative director of a brand management firm with a degree in fine arts, I have long understood that there is a relationship between the traditional arts and innovative arts,” Miranda said. “As a result, I could not be more excited or honored to be immersed in the best of both worlds in teaching at the Lyme Academy.”

Though art is always evolving and changing, particularly in a computer-driven world, the foundation of art and its teaching remains a guiding force for the academy, which is staying true to its roots by offering comprehensive courses in figurative and representational art.

Fall offerings include core curriculum courses such as Foundations in Drawing, Anatomical Drawing, Figure Drawing to Painting, Figure Sculpture, Printmaking, and weekly classes open to the public including Open Figure Drawing and Watercolor.

In addition, the fall will bring portfolio prep weekends with instructional focus on building skills to develop a body of work. These will be:

  • Drawing: Art of the Cast Sept. 28 & 29 and Oct. 5 & 6
  • Sculpture: The Skull Oct. 19 & 20 and Oct. 26 & 27
  • Value Painting: Shades of Grey Nov. 2 & 3 and Nov. 9 & 10.

Stephen Shaheen, a former faculty member at Lyme Academy College, and Kellie Pereira, a BFA graduate of Lyme Academy College, will teach the stone carving class., which runs from Nov. 7-10.

Masterclass workshops with nationally known artists will be open to both novice and skilled artists and offered in:

  • Animal Sculpture
  • Encaustic
  • Stone Carving
  • Painting the Human Image
  • Large Scale Figure Painting
  • Painting En Plein Air & In-Studio: 4 Steps to Successful Painting
  • Digital Photography for Beginners
  • Photography: Insightful Portraiture
  • The Expressive Photograph and the Landscape.

Registration is open for all fall courses.

For more information or to enroll in a course, visit lymeacademy.org.

Lyme Academy of Fine Arts is located at 84 Lyme Street in Old Lyme, Conn.

Share

Former Lyme-Old Lyme Superintendent Klein, Now Head of NFA, Appointed President of St. Joseph’s in Trumbull

David Klein

OLD LYME — The former Superintendent of Lyme-Old Lyme (LOL) Schools, David Klein, will leave his current position as Head of School at Norwich Free Academy (NFA) at the end of the 2019-20 academic year in order to serve as president of the newly independent St. Joseph High School in Trumbull, Conn., a college preparatory Catholic high school.

Klein sent an email to NFA faculty and staff this past Wednesday afternoon announcing his decision to take on ” a new professional opportunity,” and stressing, “This unique professional opportunity found me in July, and I pursued it because it aligns so perfectly with my deep Catholic faith. I was not seeking a new job, and this position is the only one I have sought since I began my NFA tenure in October 2011.”

In his email, Klein also noted, “There is much to accomplish this year, and I will pursue this work with the passion and focus I have demonstrated each day for the past eight years.”

Klein served as superintendent of Lyme-Old Lyme Schools from 2000-2008 and then moved to the same position at Madison Public Schools  through 2011 when he joined NFA. He and his wife Patricia still reside in Old Lyme.

Christopher Wilson, Board of Directors Chairperson for St. Joseph High School, announced the news of Klein’s appointment to both the internal and external St. Joseph’s community in a letter, which described Klein as having, “extraordinary experience in community engagement, student services, college preparatory education, institutional advancement, financial management, and administration will serve St. Joseph High School well.”

Wilson added that Klein’s, “career exemplifies a commitment to creating a vibrant educational community that encourages initiative, creativity, and well-being. He values a supportive school culture that fosters caring relationships between adults and young people. David is a leader of exceptional integrity, respect and accomplishment.”

In the same letter, Wilson quoted Klein as saying, “I am deeply grateful for this extraordinary opportunity, and for the trust and confidence of St. Joseph High School’s Board of Directors … Patricia and I are honored and excited to join this exceptional community.”

Klein’s last day at NFA will be June 30, 2020 and he will take up his new position at St. Joseph’s the following day.

Share

Jeanne Delaura is Lyme-Old Lyme Schools ‘Employee of the Year’

Lyme-Old Lyme Schools Employee of the Year Jeanne Delaura stands with LOL Schools Superintendent Ian Neviaser after her award was announced.

LYME-OLD LYME — Noting that he, “Couldn’t think of anyone more deserving for this recognition,” Lyme-Old Lyme (LOL) Schools Superintendent Ian Neviaser announced at the Convocation gathering of all administrators, faculty and staff held Aug. 26, that his Administrative Assistant Jeanne Delaura had been selected as the LOL Schools Employee of the Year.

He described Delaura’s long and stellar career with Regional District 18 mentioning that she started work for the district back in 1991, thanks to information received from her brother-in-law, former LOL Schools Athletic Director Rob Roach, who had told Delaura about the job opening. Neviaser further noted that thanks to her longevity with LOL Schools, Delaura possesses a unrivaled wealth of knowledge about the district.

Despite this vast wisdom, he said she never stops learning new skills, having taken on matters including the development and management of the acclaimed Region18.org website, handling numerous complex legal issues, managing the AESOP software (which tracks teacher absences), and controlling the administration of all legal and personnel contracts.

Neviaser commented that one of Delaura’s well-known sayings in Central Office is, “You don’t have to be smart, you just have to be organized,” but said, although he agrees unequivocally that Delaura is exceptionally organized, “She just happens to be very smart too.” He also noted that Delaura has a sixth sense when it comes to people — she knows almost immediately who will stay the course and who will fall by the wayside. 

Adding that she is an, “Amazing mother to two lovely young ladies,” Neviaser commented on Delaura’s unflappable and pleasant personality, remarking that she is, “always smiling, even when dealing with people who are clearly not feeling like smiling.”

A slightly nervous and very humble Delaura accepted the award with a short but powerful speech. She explained that 28 years ago, “a very, very kind man,” then LOL Schools Superintendent Julius “(Jules) d’Agostino took a chance on me knowing full well that I did not have any experience of working for a school district.” Despite that surprising start, Delaura said firmly, “Accepting that offer was one of the best decisions I have made.”

Delaura continued, “I love my job here — it is because of the wonderful people that surround me here. Lyme-Old Lyme is a very special place where kindness and generosity are commonplace. The bar is set very high and I feel so lucky to be a part of it.”

Delaura then turned to her current boss and said, “I would be remiss for not recognizing my now fifth superintendent. Ian, I’m so proud to be a part of your Central Office team. You are the “Super” of my superintendents!” (After d’Agostino, Delaura’s superintendents were, in order, Jefferson Prestridge, David Klein, Elizabeth Osga and then Neviaser — she also worked under Dr. John Whritner when he was interim superintendent on two separate occasions.)

Still addressing Neviaser, she added to roars of laughter, “Also, I thank you for getting the heck out of my way every day and letting me do my job,” but then added in a serious tone, “I will always have your back.”

Delaura was extremely appreciative of her award thanking the audience, “for recognizing me today so warmly,” and expressing her hope that “… this school year is a wonderful one for all of you.”

 

Share

Mercy Alger is Lyme-Old Lyme Schools ‘Teacher of the Year’

Lyme-Old Lyme Schools Teacher of the Year Mercy Alger stands with Superintendent Ian Neviaser(left) and Lyme School Principal Jim Cavalieri after her award was announced.

LYME-OLD LYME — Keeping with tradition, the Lyme-Old Lyme Schools ‘Teacher of the Year’ was announced at Convocation on Aug. 27, the day before students were welcomed back to school for the start of the 2019-20 academic year.

Lyme Consolidated Principal Jim Cavalieri named fourth grade teacher Mercy Alger as the recipient of the award reminding the audience of administrators, faculty and staff that it is given to “acknowledge excellence in teaching in Lyme-Old Lyme Schools.” Noting that, “As a high achieving district, we have many qualified professionals that meet the criteria for this honor,” Cavalieri went on to point out that nevertheless, “This year’s recipient truly rises above our district’s standard of excellence,” adding that she is, “… on the cutting edge with her instruction.”

Alger joined Lyme-Old Lyme Schools in 2007 and has been spent the last eight years teaching fourth grade in Lyme School. In terms of her classroom abilities, Cavalieri mentioned the sign outside Alger’s door, which reads,”Amazing things happen here.”  He stressed, however, that doesn’t tell the whole story, saying, “Truth be told, that message can’t begin to describe the extraordinary experience that happens in her room,” explaining that Alger has created a “non-traditional classroom space” where “a true community of learners” flourishes.

Cavalieri mentioned that coincidentally Alger’s maiden name was Teachworth, but notes that such a name didn’t necessarily foretell she would be an exceptional teacher. Declaring that Alger was, in fact, “born to teach, with or without her birth name,” he described her as “a creative, energetic, and compassionate teacher, who makes a tremendous, positive impact on all of her students.”

Listing numerous activities that Alger has either initiated or continued, including running the “Look for the Good” project, promoting an after-school writing club, co-directing the fifth grade musical, and serving as adviser to Student Leaders, Cavalieri observed that, “what she does beyond the classroom is as important as what she does within the classroom.”

Describing her as a team player, who supports her fellow faculty members in as many ways as possible, Cavalieri added that she does all this “with such great passion.” Cavalieri summed up Alger as someone who allows each and every student — regardless of ability — to reach their potential, and quoting from a parent concluded, “[Alger] sparks something in everyone: finding their passion, listening for their voice, showing them their strengths, and motivating them to act.”

In her acceptance speech, Alger, who attended Lyme-Old Lyme Schools herself, initially looked back on her own school days saying, “I was raised on this stage, within these walls, on this campus,” and prompted laughter when she added, “I was taught by some of you in these very seats.” With a brief burst of music to accompany her, she then gave her own rendition of the opening lines of John Mellencamp’s famous number, “I was born in a small town, and I live in a small town …”

Throughout her speech, Alger used the theme of small towns and the importance of their communities, recalling, ” I was raised here, on the shoulders of giants and … when I looked back at why all of these giants made such an impact on me, it became so clear; they knew the secret of how to have the best school year yet all along.”  This secret she explained was that, “They all told us stories,” adding, “The act of telling a story does more than just tell a story. It builds trust. Community. … Realness.”

Citing examples of memorable and often amusing moments with several of the teachers present in the auditorium from when she was a Lyme-Old Lyme student, Alger urged her colleagues to “remember the power of sharing our stories,”saying, “As the craziness of assessment schedules hits your desk … I hope you remind yourself daily of the person you are outside of your classroom walls and how much power and value that has within your daily interactions with your students. I hope you soak in weekends, inspiring books, hours spent around a table … so that you may come back on any given Monday with yet another story to tell.”

She concluded by stressing that in the moments when teachers share their own personal stories with students, they will be teaching, “… community, vulnerability, and trust … and in those moments I know we will all rise as giants in this small town and have the best year yet.”

 

Share

Lyme-Old Lyme Schools Enjoy Successful First Day of New Academic Year

James Dahlke boards the bus Tuesday on his way to attending his first day of sixth grade  at Lyme-Old Lyme Middle School yesterday.

School buses were out on the streets of Lyme and Old Lyme yesterday once again picking up their precious cargo of students traveling to Lyme-Old Lyme (LOL) Schools. Emotions ran the gamut from quiet tears shed by parents through the gentle trepidation of students starting at LOL Schools for the first time all the way to leaps of joy by students as they reconnected with friends and teachers who they hadn’t seen since June.

Looking back on a successful start to the 2019-20 school year, Lyme-Old Lyme Schools Superintendent Ian Neviaser commented, “We had a great first day.  Our students and staff arrived smiling and happy to return on what was a beautiful day of weather and a great day to start to the school year.”

 

 

Share

Lyme-Old Lyme Schools Kick Off a New Year Today

Veteran Lyme-Old Lyme Middle School math teacher Marc Vendetti welcomes students to his classroom during Monday’s Open House. All photos by Suzanne Thompson.

LYME-OLD LYME — Today is opening day for Lyme-Old Lyme (LOL) Schools!

An enthusiastic LOL Schools Superintendent Ian Neviaser told LymeLine.com, “We are excited about the opening of the 2019-2020 school year.  We look forward to welcoming new and familiar faces to all of our buildings.”

There were so many questions to ask during Open House at Lyme-Old Lyme Middle School.

All the schools were open yesterday for the students to meet their teachers and explore their new classrooms and, in some cases, new schools.

Thirty new hires start working with students at Lyme-Old Lyme Schools today. There are three new staff at Mile Creek School where principal Kelly Enoch takes up her tenure and seven at Lyme Consolidated. Meanwhile at the middle school, five new employees start work and six join the high school.

Monday was an opportunity to check out everything in the foyer at the middle school before the rigors of classroom learning begin.

Positions which stretch across grades include a Behavior Analyst, Pre-K – 8 Math Coach, School Nurse and a Campus Security official.

Smiling Mile Creek School students and alumni join the school’s Library Media Specialist Diana Marchese (third from right) for a group photo.

The all-new, universal Pre-K class for four-year-olds, which opens today at Center School, has taken on six new employees in a variety of capacities. Neviaser commented, “We are particularly excited to begin the new year with our expanded pre-K program and look forward to the joy that will bring to the many families who previously could not benefit from this excellent opportunity.”

Share

Lyme-Old Lyme Schools SAT Scores Are in Top 12 Statewide in Both Subjects

Lyme-Old Lyme Schools Superintendent Ian Neviaser

LYME-OLD LYME — Lyme-Old Lyme High School (LOLHS) achieved exceptional results in the statewide SAT results published earlier this week by the Connecticut State Department of Education.

The school placed 10th in the Math and 11th in the English Language Arts (ELA) statewide rankings. Moreover, LOLHS was the only school in New London County to feature in Top 12 with almost all the remaining schools in the Top 12 coming from Fairfield County.

A delighted Lyme-Old Lyme Schools Superintendent Ian Neviaser commented exclusively to LymeLine, ““I am so proud of the hard work our students and staff have put in to make us the only school in our region in the top 12 in SAT scores in the entire state.”

He added, “To consistently remain as the highest scoring school in our region shows that our dedication to the success of students through our in-school SAT preparation program is paying dividends.”

The top tier of Math and ELA statewide rankings were as follows:

Math SAT

  1. Darien School District
  2. New Canaan School District
  3. Westport School District
  4. Ridgefield School District
  5. Wilton School District
  6. Avon School District
  7. Weston School District
  8. Regional School District 09
  9. Glastonbury School District
  10. Regional School District 18

English Language Arts SAT

  1. New Canaan School District
  2. Wilton School District
  3. Westport School District
  4. Darien School District
  5. Ridgefield School District
  6. Weston School District
  7. Regional School District 09
  8. Simsbury School District
  9. Avon School District
  10. Greenwich School District
  11. Regional School District 18

 

Share