Town Crier

TEWKSBURY — The Tewksbury School Com­mittee met on Nov. 16, 2022 at TMHS.

The committee recognized John Baker as a commended student in the 2023 National Merit Scho­larship Program, one of the top 50,000 scorers in the US on the PSAT. The committee also recognized Rafael Beluco as a National His­panic Recognition Award scholar and Marissa Tout­puissant as a National Af­rican American Recogni­tion Award scholar for 2022.

The committee heard an update about English language education from ELE teachers Kathy Henry and Karen Hodgson, and district director of student and family support Karen Baker O’Brien. The ELE team is made up of seven staff members across all buil­dings serving 150 students.

With more than 100 students in the program, the district is eligible to ac­cess Title III funds and establish a parent advisory committee. Currently, 47 unique languages are spoken at home across the district; the most common langua­ges are Spanish and Portuguese.

Assistant Superintendent Lori McDermott delivered good news about the district’s 2022 spring MCAS performance. The district is performing above the state level in English, math, and science, and very few students did not pass. Though fewer students met proficiency stan­dards, most students show­ed growth.

McDermott said that the district plans to focus on early literacy and math proficiency, as well as provide additional staff training to support students with dyslexia. McDermott also reported about recent parent engagement events at the elementary schools and the Veteran’s Day ceremony at TMHS.

While state and national test scores have declined since 2019, the US Depart­ment of Education reported that Massachusetts re­mains first in the nation in education. Massachu­setts students received the highest numeric score on two out of four assessments in the National As­sessment of Educational Progress, and the second highest score on the other two assessments.

Superintendent Brenda Theriault-Regan shared that several TMHS students signed letters of in­tent to play collegiate sports. A $100,000 grant was awar­ded by the Department of Elementary and Secon­dary Education for after school and out of school time, supporting the Pen­guin Pride Program at the Heath Brook and summer credit recovery programs at the Wynn and TMHS.

Healthy snacks are on sale for students after school, and TMHS has re­started recycling.

Business Manager Dave Libby shared that most of the new elementary school has been completed and teachers and administrators are conducting meetings to plan the move to the new building from the North Street and Trahan schools. Office move-in will continue throughout November, and Libby also reported the building is of­ficially on town insurance.

Members discussed carrying over names to the new elementary school from the old buildings. Suggestions included naming the new gym after the North Street School and the media center the Tra­han Library Media Center.

The next meeting is sche­duled for Dec. 7, 2022. The meet­ing may be view­ed on Com­cast channel 22 and Veri­zon channel 34.

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