Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Welcome Ms. Bebchick!

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Ms. Pamela R. H. Angelakis, Superintendent of the Swampscott Public Schools, is pleased to announce the appointment of Ms. Ilana Bebchick as the next principal of the Hadley School effective July 1, 2017. 

Ms. Bebchick’s comes to us with years of experience as the former Principal of Liberty Elementary School in Braintree and Assistant Head of School at The Meridian School, in Seattle, WA.  She also has 14 years of experience in total as a bilingual elementary classroom teacher in first, second and third grades, a fourth grade classroom teacher, a Field Supervisor, and Instructional Coach.  Ms. Bebchick possesses a Bachelor of Arts from Tufts University and a Masters of Education from Boston University, School of Education.

Ms. Bebchick told the Superintendent, “I am so excited and honored to be joining the Swampscott Public Schools as the principal of Hadley Elementary School.  I thoroughly enjoyed meeting district administrators and Hadley students, staff, and parents during the interview process and look forward to starting in my new role this summer.”

Ms. Bebchick was one of two finalists presented to Superintendent Angelakis as the recommended choice of a representative Search Committee comprised of the Director of Curriculum and Instruction, Clarke & Stanley School Principals, Hadley School teachers, and Hadley School parents. 

We are currently working on a transition schedule with Mrs. Phelan and Ms. Bebchick before the end of the school year as well as some Parent Coffees and/or Meet ‘n Greets.  Ms. Bebchick’s experience and successes as an instructional leader, collaborative approach, and diverse background make her a perfect fit for the Hadley School community.  I look forward to having her as a member of my Leadership Team and wish to welcome her to the Swampscott Public Schools.

Thursday, May 18, 2017

2017-2018 Kindergarten News

We would like to invite you to a Kindergarten Information Evening on Tuesday, June 6th at 6:30 PM at the Swampscott Middle School in the Little Theater. The evening will be an opportunity to hear about a typical day in your child’s kindergarten day including information regarding the curriculum and schedule. In addition, there will be a panel of specialists from the district in the areas of health, social emotional development, student services and kindergarten readiness to answer any questions.

The following are some updates to the registration process this year:

·     Kindergarten school assignment letters will be mailed on or before August 15th to allow for balanced class sizes in the district. Please note that siblings are placed at the same school unless there is an individual need for specialized district programming. 

·     Kindergarten screening will occur during the first three days of school, Tuesday, August 29th through August 31st with the first FULL day of school Tuesday, September 5th.  Special Education laws require that all children be screened upon entrance into kindergarten.  The screening is a non-intensive scan of your child's learning skills and abilities and lasts approximately 30 minutes.  The purpose of the screening is to identify any learning issues that may exist which may require further evaluation and/or special education services.

The screening addresses the following developmental areas:  social interaction, visual-motor/adaptive skills, language and cognition, and gross motor/body awareness.  The screening measures how your child learns, not how much he/she has learned.  Vision and Hearing screenings will occur during the first month of school.

Kindergarten teachers feel the screening is a critical opportunity for the teachers to get to know each child and to make balanced classes for the school year in areas of learning and social emotional development.  A balanced class will allow for a successful transition into kindergarten and an optimal learning environment for each child as they embark on their educational journey in the Swampscott Public Schools.

We look forward to meeting each and every one of Swampscott’s entering kindergarten class in the fall. We look forward to meeting parents at the Kindergarten Information Night June 6th at 6:30PM in the Little Teacher at the Swampscott Middle School.

In the meantime, if you have any questions at all, please do not hesitate to call Martha Raymond, Director of Student Services.


From Mrs. Wilbur (adapted): 
A HUGE thank you to our staff, students and community members that put on a fantastic STEM Family Night.  We had wonderful attendance and received so many compliments on our program offerings and the creative and engaging activities for the community to try.  Our students were well prepared and they did a fantastic job showcasing the fabulous STEM activities we are doing district wide.  We also hosted our annual Science and Engineering Fair - so there was lots to see.

Winning projects this year were:
1st Place:  
Cam Lau and Joe Varghese with "Candy Chromatography"

2nd Place tie:
Kyle Lenihan and Harry Katz with "Microbacterial Effectiveness in Consuming Oil"
Mia Guthrie with "Determining Which Over-the-Counter Painkiller Dissolves the Quickest"

3rd Place:
Sam Agresti  and Grace DiGrande with "Determination of water hardness from Calcium Chloride and Magnesium Chloride solutions using the addition of soap"

These students have the opportunity to polish up their projects to enter in the MA Science and Engineering Fair next year.  

STEM Family Night once again was a true community evening that celebrates the great work our teachers and students are doing.  Thank you for giving your extra time for this wonderful event.  

From Mr. Franklin: 
And while STEM was stemming, just down the road, the Swampscott Public Library held it's 13th  Lee Golomb Cadiff Teen Poetry Contest awards ceremony. These amazing SHS poets received awards ($$, fame, adoring accolades!):

Honorable Mention:
Olivia Kiely ("Tyler")
Cenna Khatib ("Dear Sasha")
Lori Kholomyansky ("Homebound")

Third Place:
Megan Mentuck ("The World")

Second Place:
Olivia Reiser ("A Beautiful Mess")

First Place:
Olivia Barton ("A Portrait of the Coffee Drinkers")

Rising Star Award:
Jewel Soares ("To Spark A Flame")

Congrats to all.  I have copies of their poems if you'd like to read them.  "A poet is, before anything else, a person who is passionately in love with language." (W.H. Auden)


The Swampscott High School Fine Arts Department is pleased to announce its annual Spring Concert and Art Show this Thursday, May 18th, at 7 p.m. in the SHS Auditorium.

The Concert Band, Chorus, Jazz Band, and North Shore Voices
will perform an exciting array of jazz, pop, musical theater and traditional spirituals.

Art work by the students of Ms. Balliro and Ms. Ganci will be on display in the atrium before and after the performance.
                                               The concert is free and open to the public.


Dear Parents and Guardians,

As members of the Swampscott Public Schools Mental Health Task Force, we want to address the recently released Netflix series 13 Reasons Why.  This series is based on a book of the same title, written by Jay Asher and published in 2007 and 2017.  Because of its significant popularity and the serious issues explicitly depicted – including drug use, sexual assault, bullying, and suicide -- we feel it is important to provide some guidance about the series.

13 Reasons Why has several concerning themes:

  • The series explicitly depicts a graphic death by suicide, and portrays it as the only viable option for the main character.
  • There is no mention of mental illness, which is the leading cause of death by suicide.
  • The adults in her life – her parents, school counselor, and school administrators -- fail the character and her peers over and over.
  • There are no examples of appropriate or healthy coping strategies, nor is there any help-seeking that is successful.
  • School mental health providers act in unethical and incompetent ways throughout the series.

We strongly urge you to talk with your children to see if they have read the book and/or watched the series.  Anecdotally, we know that many students in grades 5 and above watched it over April vacation, frequently without their parents’ knowledge.  We recommend special caution if your child is vulnerable or has had suicidal ideation.  It is a highly suggestive show and could be risky for adolescents who struggle with isolation or self-harming behavior.

School counselors and mental health professionals in our district are highly trained professionals whose competencies include working with susceptible students.  Be assured that the district counseling professionals are thoughtful, intentional, and ethical in their everyday work with your children.  The district has created resources specifically designed to address our most vulnerable students, such as the recently created SWIFT and Harbor programs at Swampscott High School, which will be replicated at Swampscott Middle School next year.

Should you have concerns about your child, please do not hesitate to contact the counseling staff at your child’s school.  Also refer to the resources below.  The mental health professionals, educators, and administrators stand ready to work with you and your child to keep them safe and healthy.

Sincerely yours,

Swampscott Public Schools Mental Health Task Force


SPS Counseling Staff

Stanley Elementary School:  Liam Hurley,

Clarke Elementary School:  Cathy Kalpin,

Hadley Elementary School:  Sara Landergan,

Swampscott Middle School:  Kelly Ellison,

                                                  Michele Capozzi,

                                                  Dylan Randall,

Swampscott High School:  Sarah Kelley,

                                                Rachel Sturma,

                                                Emily Zotto Barnum,

                                               Julie Mazzola,

Other Resources

Samaritans of Merrimack Valley: