Stay Connected with the Somerville Public Schools

Stay up-to-date with what's happening in the Somerville Public Schools and in our community by subscribing to CONNECTIONS: A Newsletter from the Somerville Public Schools. CONNECTIONS goes out weekly during the school year, except holidays. If you would like to receive CONNECTIONS, send us a note with "SUBCRIBE to CONNECTIONS" in the subject line at:

May 10, 2019

News & Notes

SHS Seniors Earn Northeastern Conference Student-Athlete Honors

The Northeastern Conference has recognized Somerville High School seniors Robert McCarthy and Isabel Silva for their academic and athletic achievements over the past four years. Robert is a three-season athlete and has lettered in varsity cross country, football, and indoor and outdoor track & field. He captains both the indoor and outdoor track & field teams. As a track & field student-athlete, he is an NEC All-Conference and has received the “Unsung Hero” and “Most Improved” awards. Robert is also a member of the school improvement council and is the Class of 2019 President. Dave Dickerson, the SHS Track & Field Coach, states that Robert’s “relentless and dedicated pursuit of his dreams, academically and athletically, has been amazing to watch. He's the real deal and he's got both a personality and leadership that shine. Bobby worked hard to become an integral member of the SHS 4 x 200m relay squad that owns the NEC all-time record and placed as the top Massachusetts team at the National Scholastic Championships in March 2018.” Robert will attend Harvard in the fall and plans to major in computer science.

Isabel Silva is a three-sport athlete and has earned varsity letters in volleyball, swimming, and softball. She also has served as the captain of all three programs. She is described by her coaches as a dependable leader with a phenomenal work ethic and limitless enthusiasm, and as someone who motivates her teammates to give their best, feel that they are important to the team, and reminds them that their group effort makes the entire team better. A member of the National Honor Society, Isabel balances her co-curricular experiences and academics with an unwavering dedication and commitment. She serves as an officer of Best Buddies and of the senior class, and she also teaches Sunday School. Isabel will attend Northeastern University and intends to major in computer science and mathematics.

Argenziano Students Learn About the Art of Bookmaking

An Argenziano Kindergartener recently asked Library/Media Specialist, Elisa McDowell, how illustrations are placed in books. Does an illustrator draw each picture on each book, she wondered. Ms. McDowell answered with a two-part bookmaking project. In the first class, the concept of mechanical reproduction was introduced. Each student illustrated his or her own page that was then photocopied. During the second class, the students received copies of every illustration, bound their copies into books, and drew custom covers for them. One student even pulled out her book to compare it to her original artwork. She noticed that the copy was not true to the color of her original illustration. A staff member from The Beautiful Stuff Project who was helping out told her that these are the same issues that adult illustrators and designers encounter when they publish books. Through this project, Argenziano kindergarten students gained valuable insight into the art of bookmaking.

A Community Working Together to Support Summer Learning

The Somerville Education Foundation’s (SEF) second annual summer learning campaign is in full swing. One of SEF’s goals is to expand access for children and young people to local high-quality out-of-school-time programs in the city. In 2018, SEF raised and distributed $27,000 to enable community partners to provide additional scholarship spots to more than 100 Somerville young people. This year, SEF and the Somerville Chamber of Commerce have begun working together to operate an annual campaign and establish funding to support SEF’s summer learning goal. SEF would like to further increase its funding support to these programs. 

By middle school, students without access to quality afterschool and summer learning opportunities can suffer up to a 6,000-hour learning gap compared with peers enrolled in quality programs (ExpandED Schools, 2013). Quality summer programs offer young people the opportunity to forge positive relationships with adults and peers, and build social, cognitive, and practical skills. Healthy relationships form the foundation of social-emotional skills and the ability to function successfully throughout life—at home, in school, with family and friends, and as members of a community.(Crowley, Greenberg, & Jones, 2015)

Working together, the Somerville Education Foundation and Somerville Chamber of Commerce are leading the way in ensuring that Somerville youth have access to high-quality summer programs throughout the city. You can be part of this learning adventure by making a donation to the 2019 SEF campaign. Contributions can be sent to: Somerville Education Foundation, 17 Kidder Ave, Somerville, MA 02144 or you can pay online using the link in the Somerville Education Foundation’s campaign letter.  For more information, contact

 “Everyone Is Welcome Here” Week of Action and Celebration

SHS staff stood at the entrance to Somerville High School on Monday with a warm welcome for students and the SHS community. This was the kickoff to a week of action organized by students and staff, in support of immigrant students and families. The theme, “Everyone is Welcome Here,” conveys the commitment to supporting and helping every student thrive in a welcoming and inclusive teaching and learning community. Art teacher Lindsey Richard worked with her students on celebratory banners.

At the East Somerville Community School, teachers and staff also had big plans to celebrate “Everyone is Welcome Here” throughout the week. Students and teachers from kindergarten to 8th grade engaged in read-alouds, lessons, heard from guest speakers, and worked on projects based on five daily immigration-related themes. These themes were: treating others with kindness, having the power to create safe classrooms, diversity is our strength, America is a country of immigrants, and everyone is welcome here. The ESCS Week of Action ends with the “Everyone is Welcome Here” Block Party, a free school-wide event on Friday, May 10th from 3:00-5:00pm.

Through their work in their respective schools and classrooms, and as part of the Educators for Sanctuary Schools work, educators from schools across the district are taking the lead in ensuring that their teaching is inclusive and welcoming to every student who walks through their doors. In fact, a district-wide professional development workshop offered by two teachers earlier this spring focused on how to develop curriculum that makes sure students are reflected in classroom materials and activities. You can learn more about this workshop in this blog post: A recent article in the Somerville Scout highlights some of the inclusivity efforts under way at the East Somerville Community School. Read the article to learn more:

What's Happening  

Somerville Youth Peace Conference Takes Place This Saturday

The 13th annual Peace Conference, hosted by Teen Empowerment and the City of Somerville, takes place this Saturday, May 11th, 5:00-8:00pm at the Somerville High School Auditorium. More than 300 Somerville youth and adults are expected to attend this year’s conference, titled “The Lies We Live, The Truth We Tell: A Youth Perspective” which will feature an all-original show with theater, spoken word, music, and speeches. Topics such as school walkouts, mental health, discrimination, gentrification, immigration, relationships, violence, substance abuse, and more will be examined. Tickets are $5 in advance, $6 at the door. Contact Danielle at or 617-625-6600 x2254 for tickets or more info. Learn more about Teen Empowerment at

Medford Street Bridge to Close Friday, May 17, 2019 through Spring 2020

The Medford St. bridge, in Gilman Square behind Somerville High School (SHS), will close for construction starting Friday, May 17. The bridge is expected to remain closed through the spring of 2020.  For the duration of this closure, all traffic will be detoured around the work zone via Pearl St. and McGrath Highway. Detour maps and directions for vehicular and pedestrian/bicycle traffic are available on in the Bridge Closures section. To stay informed about construction, sign up to receive a weekly email outlining upcoming construction citywide at Residents are also encouraged to enroll in the City’s alert system at to receive notifications prior to major detours or disruptive construction activity in their neighborhood. Anyone seeking assistance for an urgent Green Line construction-related matter should call the 24/7 GLX hotline at 1-855-GLX-INFO (459-4636) or email For additional information about the Green Line Extension project, including construction schedules, fact sheets, and the latest station designs, visit

Special Olympics Event at Trum Field, May 23rd

Join us at Trum Field (541 Broadway) on Thursday, May 23rd for the annual Special Olympics event and celebration. Activities kick off at 9:00am and end at noon. Come out and enjoy the camaraderie while you cheer on and support our incredible special Olympic student-athletes. This is a free family event.

Graduates of the SHS Class of 1969 Are Invited to Participate in 2019 Class Day Festivities

Somerville High School is looking for 50 graduates from the Class of 1969 to participate in this year’s Class Day festivities. Class Day is a traditional celebration that honors graduates from 50 years past, this year’s graduating class, and the rising freshmen and senior classes. If you would like to participate in the Class of 2019 Class Day activities, please email Barbara Favaloro, SHS Main Office, Head Clerk (, or call 617-625-6600 x6110. Class Day will take place on Friday, May 31 beginning at 8:00am at Somerville High School.  

June 7 Marks 98th Annual Parks & Recreation City-Wide Track Meet

Students in grades 3-8 are invited to participate in this year’s Parks & Recreation city-wide track meet. This year marks the 98th anniversary of this annual event. The event will take place on Friday, June 7th at Dilboy Stadium, starting at 6:00pm. Transportation for participants can be provided to and from the stadium. Students who are interested in participating can receive a sign-up sheet from their physical education teacher. For more information, please visit

Upcoming School & District Events:

Visit and click on the “calendar” link at the top of the page for a list of upcoming activities in our schools and in our District this month.

  • Friday, May 10, 7:00-11:00pm: Somerville High School Senior Prom at the Cambridge Marriott
  • Sunday, May 12, 8:00am-10:00am: WSNS Wolf Pack Cause + Event to support the WSNS PTA 
  • Tuesday, May 14: Argenziano Grade 2 Field Trip to Drumlin Farm
  • Tuesday, May 14, 5:30-7:00pm: Argenziano School Council Meeting (290 Washington St.)
  • Tuesday, May 14, 6:30-8:00pm: SHS Chamber Music Concert at Somerville High School Library (81 Highland Ave.)
  • Wednesday, May 15, 6:00-8:00pm: TENTATIVE – Argenziano Heritage Night (290 Washington St.)
  • Wednesday, May 15, 6:00-9:00pm: SSEPAC Business Meeting including Vote at the Argenziano School Cafeteria (290 Washington St.)
  • Thursday, May 16, 12:30-1:45pm: Argenziano Pre-K Field Trip to Gracie’s Ice Cream
  • Thursday, May 16 and Friday May 17, 7:00pm: Highlander Theater Co. Spring Play Festival at the SHS Auditorium (81 Highland Ave.)
  • Sunday, May 19, 2:00-5:00pm: City of Somerville Music Day Parade from City Hall Plaza (93 Highland Ave.) to Teele Sq.
  • Monday, May 20: West Somerville Neighborhood School Grade 3 Field Trip to Plymouth
  • Monday, May 20, 6:00-9:00pm: SHS Music Department Awards Ceremony at SHS Cafeteria (81 Highland Ave.)
  • Tuesday, May 21, 5:30-7:00pm: ESCS School Council Meeting at ESCS (50 Cross St.)
  • Tuesday, May 21, 7:00pm: Highlander Awards Night at SHS Auditorium (81 Highland Ave.)
  • Wednesday, May 22, 9:00-11:00am: Kindergarten Transition Day (no school for Kindergarten students district-wide)
  • Wednesday, May 22: Half-Day Wednesday (students in grades 1-8 dismissed at noon)
  • Wednesday, May 22, 7:00-9:30pm: Class of 2019 Scholarship Awards Night at SHS Auditorium (81 Highland Ave.)
  • Thursday, May 23, 9:00am-12:00pm: Special Olympics Event at Trum Field (541 Broadway)
  • Thursday, May 23: West Somerville Neighborhood School Grade 6 Field Trip to Museum of Fine Art
  • Thursday, May 23, 6:30-8:30pm: Evening of Song (Chorus and Guitar) at SHS Auditorium (81 Highland Ave.)
  • Friday, May 24: West Somerville Neighborhood School Field Day
  • Friday, May 24, 9:30-11:15am: WHCIS Spring Concert at SHS Auditorium (81 Highland Ave.)
  • Friday, May 24, 9:15-10:15am: Argenziano K-4th Memorial Day Concert at the Cafetorium (290 Washington St.)

Upcoming School Committee Meetings:

Find the complete School Committee schedule, agendas and meeting minutes (as approved) online at

  • Monday, May 13, 6:00-7:00pm: Rules and Management Subcommittee Meeting at the City Council Chambers, City Hall (93 Highland Ave.)
  • Monday, May 13, 7:00-8:30pm: Regular School Committee Meeting at the City Council Chambers, City Hall (93 Highland Ave.)
  • Monday, May 20, 6:45-7:00pm: School Choice Public Hearing at the City Council Chambers, City Hall (93 Highland Ave.)
  • Monday, May 20, 7:00-8:30pm: Regular School Committee Meeting at the City Council Chambers, City Hall (93 Highland Ave.)
  • Tuesday, May 21, 6:00-7:00pm: Finance and Facilities Meeting of the Whole at the Central Office Main Conference Room (8 Bonair St., 2nd floor)
  • Tuesday, May 21, 7:00-8:00pm: Educational Programs and Instruction Subcommittee at the Central Office Main Conference Room (8 Bonair St., 2nd floor)

Upcoming Somerville Family Learning Collaborative Workshops and Events:

Find a complete list of SFLC events and workshops at

Kindergarten Transition Day – Wednesday, May 22, 9:00-11:00am @ schools across the district

Parents/guardians and incoming kindergarten students will visit kindergarten classrooms, learn tips to prepare children for kindergarten and what to expect the first day of school, and meet kindergarten teachers and other parents/guardians of incoming students.

SFLC June Drop-in Playgroups at the Cummings School, 42 Prescott St. (*No Registration Necessary)

Discover and Learn Drop-in Playgroups for children birth-5 years old (must be accompanied by an adult):

  • Tuesdays, Yellow Door, 3:00-4:30pm: June 4, 11, 18, 25
  • Thursdays, Yellow Door, 10:00-11:30am: June 6, 13, 20, 27

Climb and Create Drop-in Playgroups for children ages 2-5 years old (must be accompanied by an adult):

  • Wednesdays, Pink Door, 10:00-11:30am: June 5, 12, 19, 26

Looking Ahead:

  • Monday, May 27: Memorial Day (all schools and district offices are closed)
  • Monday, May 27: Brown School Red Sox Night at Fenway Park
  • Tuesday, May 28: Argenziano 5th Grade Field Trip to Otis Museum
  • Tuesday, May 28, 6:30pm: Brown School Spring Concert at the Somerville High School Auditorium (81 Highland Ave.)
  • Tuesday, May 28: West Somerville Neighborhood School 8th Grade Field Trip to Tufts University
  • Wednesday, May 29, 9:00am-12:00pm: Argenziano Pre-K and K Field Trip to Lynn Memorial Auditorium
  • Wednesday, May 29, 6:00-8:00pm: SHS School Improvement Council Meeting at the SHS Library (81 Highland Ave.)
  • Thursday, May 30: Argenziano 3rd Grade Field Trip to Wax Museum
  • Thursday, May 30: Argenziano TENTATIVE 8th Grade Field Trip to Harbor Islands
  • Thursday, May 30: Brown School Field Day
  • Thursday, May 30, 8:45-10:15am: West Somerville Neighborhood School Spring Concert (177 Powder House Blvd.)
  • Friday, May 31, 9:00-11:45am: Somerville High School Class Day Ceremonies (81 Highland Ave.)
  • Friday, May 31: West Somerville Neighborhood School 5th Grade Field Trip to Royall House
  • Friday, May 31: West Somerville Neighborhood School 8th Grade Spanish Trip

Community News & Events

Friends of the Somerville Public Library $1 Book Sale. Want to find a great book for just $1? Friends of the Somerville Public Library is hosting their semi-annual book sale this week at the Central Branch Library, located at 79 Highland Avenue. All funds raised will help sponsor free library events such as sing-alongs, family yoga classes, and fiction writing workshops. All books on sale are just $1. Stop by and pick up a book or more to enjoy!

  • Friday, May 10, 12-4pm
  • Saturday, May 11, 10am-4pm
  • Sunday, May 12, 1-5pm

Somerville Porchfest 2019. More than 200 musical acts will be performing on porches (and sometimes spilling into front yards and gardens) across Somerville on Saturday, May 11, from 12:00 to 6:00pm. This year, performances will start in West Somerville and go east. Acts in West Somerville perform from noon-2:00pm; central Somerville bands (between Central and Willow streets) perform from 2:00-4:00pm; and East Somerville musicians perform from 4:00-6:00pm. Visit to see the current lineup and map. Contact Arts Council Director, Gregory Jenkins at (617) 625-6600, x2985 if you have questions about the festival.

Somerville Pop Warner Football and Cheer Registration Now Open. Somerville Pop Warner is getting ready for a brand new year. Registration will be on Wednesday, May 15th, 6:00-8:00pm in the community room on the second floor of Stop & Shop (779 McGrath Highway).  All families are welcome and we can't wait to welcome new families to our program. Please reach out to Roger Desrochers at 617-838-2145 with any questions.

Ryan Harrington Foundation Just One Run 5K. The Ryan Harrington Foundation hosts their 4th annual Just One Run 5K in memory of James “PJ” Pefine, on Sunday, June 2nd. The run begins at 10:00am and starts at the Blessing of the Bay Boathouse on Shore Drive in Somerville. The event includes a Kids’ Fun Run as well as a 5K Run/Walk. To learn how you can participate in and support this event, visit: For more information about the Ryan Harrington Foundation, visit

Summer HONK 2019 and Somerville String Fest Registration Now Open. Students who want to continue making music over the summer can do so with Summer Honk 2019 and the Somerville String Fest. For more information and to register, visit

Somerville Parks & Recreation. Visit to learn all about the Somerville Parks & Recreation Department’s current programming. Register today for a variety of programs including:

  • Kids Capoeira Angola. This program introduces 5-7 year olds to the movements and music of Capoeira Angola, an Afro-Brazilian martial art disguised as dance. Over seven weeks, children will focus on learning basic movements, music, and moving with a partner. The emphasis is on coordination, rhythm, cooperation, and having fun. The class runs on Saturdays 2:00-2:45pm at the Argenziano School playground from May 11 to June 22. For more information, visit
  • Somertime Day Program Summer 2019. A Summer Youth Program for Somerville children 5-13 years old, which is designed to create a structured, fun and safe environment for children in the City of Somerville during their summer school vacation. The program is held at the West Somerville Neighborhood School (177 Powder House Blvd.) and is held Monday-Friday, 8:30am to 4:30pm. To register and learn more, visit
  • Toddler Soccer Summer Sessions. Children ages 2-5 years old will be introduced to soccer principles such as using your feet, dribbling, shooting, and receiving. Through fun games, positive reinforcement, respect, teamwork, and fitness, this high-energy program will provide fundamental soccer skills. This program is run by Instructor Coach John Teves. Programs will run on Wednesdays and Thursdays from July 10 to August 15 at Founders Memorial Skating Rink Turf Facility. To learn more and to register for this program, visit:

City & District Employment Opportunities

Consider joining a winning team! Current city and district opportunities include:

  • Senior Civil Engineer, Engineering Dept., City of Somerville
  • Electrician, Dept. of Public Works, City of Somerville
  • Temporary Market Manager, Shape Up Somerville, City of Somerville
  • Director of Finance and Administration, Department of Public Works, City of Somerville

Visit for a complete listing of current open positions in the City of Somerville.

  • Board Certified Behavior Specialist, Winter Hill Community Innovation School, Somerville Public Schools
  • 2019 Summer Adventure Camp Group Leader (Anticipated), Community Schools Afterschool Program, Somerville Public Schools
  • Dean of Students (Anticipated), West Somerville Neighborhood School, Somerville Public Schools
  • 2019 SPELL High School Summer Programs, Somerville High School, Somerville Public Schools

Visit for a complete listing of current open positions in the Somerville Public Schools.


Archive of this year's CONNECTIONS e-Newsletter: