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Middle School Newsletter for August 14, 2022

I hope that you are enjoying a fun, relaxing, and rejuvenating summer break!

It is hard to believe that the days of summer will soon be drawing to a close. While it is certainly bittersweet to say goodbye to summer, we are beginning to think about the crisp days of autumn and the beginning of another school year. We are delighted to welcome both new and returning families to our NYA community as we prepare for the new year ahead. We look forward to having our students, faculty, and staff back together on campus for the first day of school on Wednesday, September 7.

As we enjoy the remaining weeks of summer, this newsletter provides some important back-to-school announcements and reminders as we all plan ahead for September. With our new Veracross parent portal, we will be switching to a different format for sharing updates this year. Stay tuned for more information.

We are very much looking forward to the new school year ahead!

Marissa Markonish
Head of Lower and Middle Schools


Be sure to log into Magnus via the Veracross parent portal to complete all forms before the start of school. Students will not be able to attend school until these vital forms have been completed.


Middle and Upper School New Student Orientation will be held on the morning of Wednesday, August 31 from 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. This event is for new sixth, seventh, and eighth grade students, all students entering fifth grade, and the parents of these students. Come to campus, meet some of your teachers and classmates, and learn more about the Middle School at NYA. Dress for students is comfortable and casual.


Is the thought of bringing all of your textbooks, supplies, and other materials on the first day of school a bit daunting? No worries! You can bring in all your gear at the Middle School Locker Open House on Wednesday, August 31. Students can swing by the Middle School building between 11:00 a.m. and 12:00 p.m., drop off some of their textbooks and supplies, and begin to set up their lockers. This is a great time to get a head start on preparations for the first week, to scope out how other students might be organizing or decorating their lockers, and to see some new and familiar faces. Although regular access to campus buildings will be restricted to students and staff again this year, parents are able to help set up lockers and get a quick peek at the classrooms during the open house. Students attending the New Student Orientation can head over to the Locker Open House immediately following the orientation. If you aren’t able to come by during the Locker Open House, please feel free to stop by by later that week to drop off items and set up your lockers. More details about lockers can be found later in this newsletter.


We are collecting any Middle School textbooks you no longer need. We will have a box under the sign-in table at the Middle School Locker Open House for any donations. This is a great time to clean out those backpacks and bookshelves!


summer-reading-pic-2Please remember that the 2022 Summer Assignments must be completed for the first day of school. All students have summer reading assignments in English. In addition, eighth grade students who are continuing their language studies in French B, Latin B, or Spanish B have summer assignments to help keep up their knowledge of the language after time away. There are no summer assignments in mathematics in the Middle School.


The first day of school, Wednesday, September 7, is a Dress-Up Day:  dress pants/slacks (no shorts), with dress shirt, tie, and sport coat/blazer; dress (no more than 3 inches above the knee); skirt (no more than 3 inches above the knee); or professional dress pants with blouse or dress top.

Convocation will begin at 7:45 a.m. on Denney Field. This is a special gathering for all members of the NYA community (students, parents, faculty, and staff) to start off the new school year. Students should plan to arrive no later than 7:35 a.m. on the first day. You will want extra time to drop off all of your gear and to get seated for Convocation. Seating for students is organized by grade. Students may leave their backpacks and other items in their lockers or in the classroom of their advisory (all fifth graders in Room 63; all sixth graders in Mertz Science Building 612; and seventh & eighth graders in advisor rooms as posted).

Following Convocation, all Middle School students and teachers will gather in the Middle School Community Room. Fifth and sixth grade students will then meet with their teachers (in rooms 63 and 612 respectively) to begin their orientation. They will follow special schedules for orientation over the first few days. Students in seventh and eighth grade will proceed to advisor meetings and will then follow a special schedule with all of their academic classes meeting for slightly shorter periods.

Fall sports teams will have team meetings on Thursday, September 8, from 2:20-3:00 p.m. and their first practice day on Monday, September 12. Fifth grade has their first day of PE on Thursday, September 8. Be sure to plan accordingly!

There will be no music class on the first day. Middle School Band, Middle School Orchestra, Girls Chorus, and Boys Chorus will all meet for a shortened introductory period on Thursday, September 8. Students need to bring instruments beginning on Monday, September 12.


Parents, please mark your calendars for Middle School Parent Night on Wednesday, September 14 at 6:30 p.m. Parents will have the opportunity to visit their student’s classes, meet their teachers, and learn about the curriculum. The program will begin with opening remarks by Marissa Markonish, reminders of upcoming events, and a presentation by our Arts Department about the exciting music and visual art programs offered to our Middle School students. This event is just for parents. The program will begin at 6:30 p.m. in the Middle School Community Room and will end around 8:00 p.m. for grade 5 and at approximately 8:45 p.m. for grades 6-8. We look forward to welcoming Middle School parents at this informational evening.


Head of School Ben Jackson and the NYA Parents’ Association are co-hosting parent welcome receptions to kick-off the school year. Please join us at the Kauffmann House (124 Main Street, Yarmouth), 4:00-6:00 p.m. (drop in any time) for an opportunity to meet other parents and learn how to get more involved with NYA.

·       Wednesday, September 28: Reception for Lower School & Toddler Parents

·       Thursday, September 29: Reception for Middle & Upper School Parents

Please RSVP here.


Be sure to recheck your schedules as some may have changes. The changes may be as minor as a study hall meeting in a different classroom or as significant as several classes having switched times and/or locations. Advisors will hand out complete, up-to-date schedules at advisory on the first day. Be sure to discard any other printed schedules and to use only this new schedule. Students will receive three copies of their schedule at this time – one to keep at home, one to post in their lockers, and one to keep in their agenda. Schedules can also be accessed at any time through the Veracross portal.


Students should come prepared on the first day with all textbooks and supplies. Along with schedules, families can access textbook information and a list of school supplies in the portal to help with back-to-school preparations. Additional supplies may be needed later, but this list should get you well on your way. For questions on textbooks or supplies, you may contact Marissa Markonish or the specific class teacher. NYA student agendas will be distributed on the first day.


Wednesday, September 14 is picture day. This is also a Dress-Up Day. Both class pictures and individual portraits will be taken. Portraits will be used in the student directory and class photos will be included in the yearbooks. Families also will have the opportunity to purchase portraits. More information on ordering pictures will be sent out directly to parents.


The sixth grade will have their class overnight at Camp Soci in Yarmouth from Thursday, September 15-Friday, September 16. Students will have a regular school day on Thursday, attend athletic practice after school, and eat dinner with their families before meeting back on campus to head off on their overnight.  Students will learn how to set up tents and enjoy some fun activities Thursday evening. Friday will include many teambuilding challenges, providing the opportunity for students to become better acquainted with their classmates and teachers. Pick up will be at 2:15 p.m. on Friday from the Middle School. Families will receive additional information from the sixth grade team prior to the trip.


We are very much looking forward to the Middle School fall activity seasons! Please review the information sent from the Athletics Department on July 29 and make sure the correct activities are listed on your student’s schedule in the portal. Middle School fall sports will begin on the second day of school, Thursday, September 8, with team meetings from 2:20-3:00 p.m. (specific locations TBA). The first day of practice will be Monday, September 12. Be sure to bring all necessary athletic clothes, shoes, and equipment for your first practice. Practice and competition schedules will be added into Veracross later this month and will be viewable in the student and parent portals. A reminder that athletic schedules change frequently due to weather and other conflicts and it is important to check them regularly. Please reach out to Director of Athletics, Kelsy Ross, with any questions by calling (207)847–5456.


Students can be dropped off in the turn-around of the Middle School parking lot and should plan to arrive between 7:20 and 7:55 a.m. Upon entering the building, students in grades six, seven, and eight will sign in at the front table, head to their lockers, and then proceed to the classroom of their first period class. Fifth grade students will head directly to Mrs. Buehner’s and Mr. Moore’s rooms and will sign in there for attendance.

Students who arrive late (after 8:00) must check in with Mrs. Goodrich at the Middle School reception desk before heading to class.


Fifth grade students will be ready for pickup after their academic day ends at 3:00 p.m. Students in grades six, seven, and eight will be ready for pickup after practice (typically 3:30 p.m.) on Monday-Thursday and after their last class on Friday afternoon (2:15 p.m.). Please note that pickup times may vary due to athletic contests, practice schedules for some activities, and special events.

Whenever possible, students should be picked up from school immediately following their last class or activity. Families should be sure to have a clear pick-up plan in place before the start of the school day. Students will head out to the Middle School parking lot turnaround after their last class or after practice unless another pick-up time has been arranged. In that case, students will wait for pick-up in an assigned study hall room and then head out to the turnaround at the prearranged time. If your student is not waiting in the turnaround, please pull into a parking space and wait for them there. Cars may not park or idle in the turnaround. The handicap parking space is reserved for those with handicap tags. A reminder that entrance to buildings on campus is limited to students and staff only.


X-Block Enrichment Courses take place weekly for students in grades six through eight (and for fifth grade students in the spring semester). Students sign up for different offerings throughout the school year, allowing them to enhance their program through additional coursework with a variety of students and teachers. Options have included Ukulele, Climbing Wall, Capture the Flag, Civil Rights Team, Build an Underwater Robot, Short Filmmaking, Four Square, Chess, and much more. Sixth, seventh, and eighth grade students will sign up for their first X-Block Enrichment courses in mid-September. This block (period 3 on Mondays) is currently blank on students’ schedules.


Students in eighth grade will have two lockers, a top and a bottom. Sixth and seventh grade students will have one locker and a designated spot in the equipment room for sports bags, coats, and lunch boxes. Fifth grade students, who have “super binders” and fewer textbooks, will have one locker. They will also have space to store items in their classroom and in areas as designated by their teacher. Students can find their locker numbers in the portal and they will also be posted in the Middle School.

We encourage students to use their lockers as an organizational tool – unpack book bags and leave them in the locker, bring specific supplies needed for each class; pack up everything needed for homework each night. Generally, students with two lockers utilize the top locker for books and supplies and the bottom locker for athletic bags and equipment, coats, etc. Students with one locker put all of their books, binders, and school supplies in their lockers; these are not permitted in the equipment room due to space constraints. The equipment room is for storing coats, empty backpacks, lunch boxes, athletic bags, and towels. With our increased enrollment in the Middle School, all instruments must be stored in Higgins.

Each locker is labeled with a magnetic name tag. Please leave these tags in place as they will help students find their locker during the first few weeks of school and later will help staff to find the appropriate locker to deliver items that were forgotten at home or return lost items to their owners. Students may decorate the inside of their locker with any non-permanent and school-appropriate items. We have seen mirrors, bins, whiteboards, beads, shag rugs, and even chandeliers! Students may also hang pictures, schedules, etc. with magnets (not tape) inside their lockers, but nothing except the name tags should be on the outside of the lockers, and name tags must be kept on lockers throughout the school year. Locker doors should be kept closed and tidy with nothing protruding (hanging out) from the lockers, including straps from lunch boxes and backpacks. Be sure to check your locker and close it completely each day! While students should keep their lunch boxes in their lockers, no other food or drink should be stored in that space. Any leftover food should be removed by the end of each day. It is important to remember that, for safety reasons, nothing is permitted in the space above the lockers.

A reminder that instruments should be brought to the band room before school (not stored in the Middle School).


NYA is delighted to have a brand new dining program with CulinArt! Students will have the option to bring food and drink from home for break and lunch or purchase them from NYA Dining Services. Families will not need to preorder lunches this year, and may opt to sign up for a lunch meal plan or purchase lunch by the day. Break and snack items will be available for purchase each day in the mini mart. You will be receiving additional information about our new dining program and how to set up your dining accounts later this week.

In the Middle School, we plan to start the year by enjoying lunch outside (weather permitting) so students will need to be sure to have their beach towels to enjoy lunch picnic-style. We will eat morning break in Advisory every Tuesday and Friday and in Safford (our cafeteria/dining hall) on Monday, Wednesday, and Thursday.


The school day at NYA begins at 8:00 a.m. All students should be in their designated classroom ready to learn by 7:58 a.m. Students who arrive late should check in with Mrs. Goodrich at the Middle School Reception Desk. Parents should call the Main Office (846-9051) or email attendance@nya.org by 8:15 a.m. if a student will be absent all day, will arrive late, or will be dismissed early. It is school policy to call the parents of students who are not accounted for.


NYA is looking forward to an exciting hockey season this school year, with a number of new players  joining the veterans on our teams. Several student-athletes from away have already been placed with NYA families and associates, but there are still a few awaiting placements in local homes. We would love to have new or returning families on our homestay roster. Families receive a stipend to help with the expenses of housing a student-athlete. Guest students frequently become great older siblings for any younger children you might have at home. If you are interested in hosting a player from away, please contact Sagaree Sengupta and Eliot Grady of the NYA Homestay Program for initial information.


As part of NYA’s Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) program, all students in grades five through twelve are required to have their own laptop or similar device and to bring it fully charged to campus each day. You can find the minimum system requirements here (also posted in the portal and in Technology under the Student and Parent tabs on the NYA homepage). Contact Chris Mazzurco with any questions regarding technology or BYOD.

EXPERIENTIAL OVERNIGHTScowislandnateoct2016-71-resize

Each class in the Middle School will have the opportunity to enjoy an experiential overnight at some point during the school year. The sixth grade has their overnight at Camp Soci on Thursday, September 15. The seventh and eighth grade experiential trips will be on Thursday and Friday, October 13-14. The eighth grade class will be with Rippleffect on Cow Island, and the seventh grade will be at the Leadership School at Camp Kieve in Nobleboro. More details will be coming soon. The fifth grade will enjoy their overnight on the Schooner Stephen Taber at the end of the school year.


Calling all golfers! NYA’s annual golf tournament, honoring late faculty member Steve Morris, is a fun event to raise money for need-based financial aid for NYA students. All are welcome to participate. The event will be held on Friday, September 30 (NEW DATE) at Toddy Brook Golf Course. Learn more and register here.


Please mark your calendars for Middle and Upper School Grandparents’ Day on Friday, October 21, 2022. To ensure that all grandparents and grandfriends receive their invitation and event information, please provide us with updated grandparent contact information. Invitations will be mailed in the coming weeks. Lower School Grandparents’ Day will take place in May.


Some reminders about the daily dress code:

  • Skirts, dresses, kilts (no more than three inches above the knee)
  • Dress pants/slacks/corduroys/khakis/chinos
  • Dress shorts (knee-length, Bermuda style)
  • Buttoned up, collared dress shirt (tucked in as appropriate) with/without a sweater
  • Dress blouse with/without a sweater
  • Footwear (clean, neat, & worn at all times)

In addition to the regular dress code, fifth grade boys and girls are allowed to wear polo shirts.

Please see the full details of the dress code in the Middle School Student & Parent Handbook.


8/31Middle & Upper School New Student Orientation9:30 – 11:30 a.m.
8/31Middle School Locker Open House11:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.
9/7Convocation7:45 a.m.
9/7First Day of School; Dress-Up Day
9/7No athletic practice for grades 6-8Pickup @ 2:15 p.m.
9/7-9/9Fifth and Sixth Grade Orientation
9/8Team Meetings for grades 6-82:20-3:00 p.m.
9/12First Day of Fall Athletic Practices, grades 6-82:30-3:30 p.m.
9/14Picture Day; Dress-Up Day
9/14Middle School Virtual Parent Night6:30 p.m.
9/15-9/16Sixth Grade Experiential Overnight, Camp Soci
9/21International Day of Peace
9/21Head of School Dinner6:00 p.m.
9/23Sky Day Project
9/23-9/24Come Home to NYA: Homecoming and Reunion
9/28Reception for Toddler & Lower School Parents4:00-6:00 p.m.
9/29Reception for Middle & Upper School Parents4:00-6:00 p.m.
9/29Parent-Advisor Conferences begintiming set by Advisor
9/30Steve Morris Alumni & Friends Golf Tournament, Toddy Brook Gold Course7:30 a.m.
10/13-10/14Seventh & Eighth Grade Experiential Overnights
10/10Indigenous Peoples’ DayNO SCHOOL
10/21Middle & Upper School Grandparents’ Day; Dress-Up Day
10/21End of First Quarter


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