April 3, 2022

Dear Families,

Spring is in the air! The final two months of the school year are always busy with classes, activities, athletics, and end of the year events. The Class of 2022 and their families recently received an update on important senior class events from Mr. Austin. The following is an overview of major end of the year events for all students, which also may be found on the website and school calendar. Many events will take place on Denney Field (the grass playing field) under a large event tent.

  • Friday, April 15: First Night of Passover; Good Friday
  • Sunday, April 17: Happy Easter!
  • Monday, April 18: No school, Patriots’ Day
  • April 19: No school, Lower School Conferences, Middle and Upper School faculty professional development
  • Friday, April 29: Last day of classes for seniors
  • Monday, May 2 through Thursday, May 12: AP exams
  • Wednesday, May 11: Middle and Upper School Spring Instrumental Concert, 6:30 p.m. (Event Tent)
  • Friday, May 13: Lower School Grandparents’ Day & Arts Celebration (Event Tent)
  • Friday, May 13: Middle and Upper School Spring Choral Concert, 6:30 p.m. (Event Tent)
  • Saturday, May 14: Upper School Prom at Maine Maritime Museum
  • Tuesday, May 17: Mock Admissions Workshop for the Class of 2023
  • Wednesday, May 25: Middle School Recognition Evening, 5:30 p.m.
  • Friday, May 27: Memorial Day Flagpole Ceremony, 7:50 a.m.
  • Monday, May 30: No School, Memorial Day
  • Tuesday, May 31 through Thursday, June 2: final exams grades 6-11
  • Wednesday, June 1: Senior lunch and Commencement practice 12:00 p.m.
  • Thursday, June 2: Last day of school for all students
    • 10:00 a.m. Travis Roy Arena and Fitness Center groundbreaking
    • 10:45 a.m. Awards Day, Event Tent
    • 6:30 p.m. Senior Dinner, Event Tent
  • Friday, June 3: NYA Soirée, 6:00 p.m., Event Tent
  • Sunday, June 5: NYA Commencement, 11:00 a.m., Event Tent
  • Monday, June 6: NYA Athletic Recognition, gymnasium

For more on any of these events, please check the calendar or contact the school.

On behalf of all of us on campus, I want to thank everyone who contributed to the Show Your Love fundraising campaign. It has been an amazing few days! The outpouring of love and support for the Academy was palpable. Our community rallied together to give $72,098 in support of the students, faculty, and programs that make NYA special. We are deeply grateful for the generosity of our community. I would like to extend special thanks to our challenge benefactors for their leadership and generosity: Deborah & Steve Bachelder P’02, P’04; James ‘98 & Beba Cabot P’30, P’32, P’36; the Gerritys – Peter ’05, Henry ’07, Lucy ’09, Charles ’12; Case & Gail Lynch GP’29, GP’31; Barb & Scott Marr P’17; Linc ‘75 & Kim Merrill P’04, P’06; Jess Lynch & Dewey Mote P’29, P’31; and Drew Oestreicher ’89. Thank you!

The chart below provides an update on COVID activity within NYA’s campus. Results of both pooled testing and positive cases are included. Cases have been stable in Maine, but unfortunately, are rising in some places around the country. For now, COVID cases have been fairly well contained at NYA, although we are likely to have to manage continued cases here at school. We will continue to pool test, review local and national guidance, and remain vigilant to mitigate the spread of COVID. Please also continue to monitor for symptoms and keep your children at home if they are sick. In addition to COVID, there also seems to be a lot of cold and flu circulating causing increased absences. I am grateful for everyone’s help and support as we navigate the pandemic.COVID 19 Data March 29 2022 NYA

The NYA Environmental Club is working hard to improve and expand recycling on our campus. This past week, the club started a pilot recycling program in the Curtis Building. The pilot serves as the initial step, a learning tool for the club, to have increased recycling available across the entire NYA campus. Members of the club presented a skit to raise awareness at last week’s Friday Forum.

*MISSION SPOTLIGHT*  A great example of interdisciplinary learning:

The eighth grade capstone project is currently underway! This is an interdisciplinary project combining English and science around the theme of food. During this unit, students engage in research, investigate topics that are interesting to them, and create a compelling presentation.

To prepare, students first read Chew on This by Eric Schlosser and Charles Wilson, which is an investigation into the fast-food industry. They also read articles, watched videos, and participated in discussions about food. They learned about various topics, from the effect of ingredients in our bodies, to the prevalence of hunger in our country, to the reality of food labeling.

Since then, students have picked a topic about food, formulated a question to investigate, and started their research. Over the next few weeks, students will also watch various TED talks to analyze how experts presented their arguments by looking at speaking style, emotional evocation, power poses, and use of images and videos.

In the end, students will create their own TED talk presentations presenting an argument about food. Presentations will be on Wednesday, April 27, at 6:30 p.m. in the Middle School Community Room. Parents are invited! Please contact Anne Powell or Erika Sahlman with any questions.

Updates from the Lower School:

  • Ms. G’s class is doing their annual Seeds of Sunshine project. The theme this year will center around support of Ukraine and Save the Children. The students design artwork to appear on packets of seeds they will sell on campus in the coming weeks, just in time for the spring planting season.
  • The Lower School participated in the Chickadee Book Award contest again this year. All classrooms read all of the nominated books and cast their votes for the winner.
  • Students in grades K – 4 will attend the Step Afrika performance at Merrill Auditorium on April 7, and will all receive a book as part of the program.

Update from the Athletics Office

Middle School

  • Activity practices are well-underway and student-athletes are fine-tuning their skills with continued training sessions. Please be sure to sign up for rschooltoday Notify Me alerts for real-time schedule updates. (The spring season is notorious for schedule changes throughout the state!) We are looking forward to competitions beginning in late April.
  • We are still looking for a Middle School girls lacrosse head coach to lead the team in skill development and competitive game play. Interested candidates should reach out to Ms. Ross to learn more about joining the Panther family!

Upper School

  • It’s all systems go for Upper School Activities!
  • Be sure to sign-up for rschooltoday Notify Me alerts for real-time schedule updates. (The spring season is notorious for schedule changes throughout the state.) We are looking forward to cheering on our Panthers!
  • A reminder that in order to participate in After School Activities, Upper School students must be in school by 10:00 a.m. each day. Students should connect with Ms. Ross if they have anticipated conflicts to discuss.
  • Upper School student-athletes planning to continue their sport participation at the collegiate or Junior level next year are encouraged to join their classmates in our NYA Signing Day event held each spring. Details will be emailed later this week from the NYA Athletics Office. We are eager to celebrate our Panthers on their next adventures (but not before enjoying the spring season here)!

Congratulations for the NYA High School Quiz Show team who competed against Windham High School last Tuesday in a qualifying match. Their show will be aired on April 21 at 8:00 p.m. on Maine Public Television. Members of the team include: Claire Arnold, Aidan Lacombe, Tyler Lacombe, Luke Markonish, Caitlin Michaelis, and Genevieve Vaillancourt. Be sure to tune in!

Congratulations also to the students who participated in the District II Elementary Music Festival yesterday. They included: Phoebe Reilly, Clem Feeley, Josie Malin, Ellie Seely, Amos Eichler, Lila Fournier, Anders Hesson, Eliza Smith, Eva Szymczak, Madeline Mayo, James Vaillancourt, Colden Daniel, Daniel Smith, and Penny Houghton.

April is National Poetry Month! Poetry will be celebrated many ways across campus.

The Muslim Holy Month of Ramadan began at sun up this morning. Ramadan Mubarek!

Have a great week.


Ben Jackson
Head of School


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