The Middle School Newsletter for October 16, 2016

This week marks a milestone for NYA as we welcome our New England Association of Schools and Colleges (NEASC) visiting team as part of our reaccreditation. Every ten years, NEASC member schools undergo an intensive accreditation process to ensure that each school is meeting exceptionally high standards. The process extends for nearly a year and a half from start to finish. After an initial orientation, the school undertakes a review of all major programs and then begins to work on the Self Study. Insights from the entire school community are gathered through surveys and interviews. NEASC utilizes fifteen standards with over one hundred indicators to guide schools through the process. Over the course of last year, in numerous meetings both large and small, we examined, scrutinized, dreamed, and reflected upon every aspect of NYA and channeled these thoughts into our Self Study. We now look forward to welcoming this team of educational professionals from across New England onto our campus and into our classrooms. This is the final step in the accreditation process, but just another step in our ongoing efforts to enhance and refine our programs and student experience.

Marissa Markonish
Head of Lower and Middle Schools


There will be a dance for seventh and eighth graders on Friday, October 21 from 6:00 until 8:00 p.m. The dance will be in Safford Center (the cafeteria in Curtis, the main building on campus). There will be a DJ, snacks, and decorations to add to the fun. The cost is $5. Dress is casual – dress down, but school appropriate.

Parents: Students and chaperones will remain in Safford for student pick-up. Please arrive by 8:00 p.m., park, and come in to pick up your student. Also, please let us know (note, email, or phone call) if your child will be picked up by someone else.


There will be a movie night for fifth and sixth graders on Friday, October 21 from 6:00 until 8:00 p.m. The movie will be shown in the Middle School Community Room. The cost is $2. The movie will be light-hearted and age appropriate. Dress is casual – pajamas are welcome! Students are encouraged to bring pillows and blankets or sleeping bags. Snacks (popcorn, candy, water) will be served. Students with allergies or dietary restrictions may bring additional snacks as well.

Parents: As with the dance, students and chaperones will remain in the community room for student pick-up. Please arrive by 8:00 p.m., park, and come in to pick up your student. Also, please let us know (note, email, or phone call) if your child will be picked up by someone else.

HALLOWEENHalloween, North Yarmouth Academy, Yarmouth, Maine. Brian Beard - CIP

As I frequently have heard students say, “Halloween is kind of a big deal at NYA.” The full community gets into the spirit and the vast majority of campus comes to school in costume. Students may wear their costumes (or portions of their costumes) throughout the school day. However, it is important that costumes still permit students to engage in the learning process (i.e. cumbersome masks or accessories should wait for the parade). All costumes should be school appropriate in nature. If a student should opt not to wear a costume, s/he must be in regular dress code for the day (and we remind students that dressing down as a “public school student” is not a costume).halloween-mk-26

We will have a slightly abbreviated schedule on Halloween, followed by the Halloween Parade in the gym at 2:00 pm.  The parade is an all school event in which students share their costumes with the school and have the chance to win prizes in categories such as “Best Small Group,” “Scariest,” or “Most Original.”  Parents are welcome to come and check out all of the fun.Halloween, North Yarmouth Academy, Yarmouth, Maine. Brian Beard - CIP







Parent-Teacher Conferences are scheduled for Thursday, November 3 from 12:00 – 8:00 p.m. and Friday, November 4 from 8:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m. There is no school on these two days. Each conference will last ten minutes. This is a chance for parents to talk with individual teachers about the progress of their child in that class. Instructions for the sign-up process will be sent out soon. Please remember that sign-ups for conferences are on a first come, first served basis.


The Community Directory, sometimes known as the “face book”, will be coming out this week. Students will receive copies from their advisors to bring home. (They may need an extra reminder from you!)  If you need an additional copy, please stop by Middle School reception after the 20th to pick one up.


dsc_6199Join us on Thursday, October 27 from 8:00 – 9:00 a.m. in the Middle School Community Room for this year’s first Morning Forum with Head of School Ben Jackson. The Forum will include informal conversation about NYA current events, as well as a tour of NYA’s Innovation Lab.  Come with questions, comments, or just to listen. Coffee and snacks will be provided. The Morning Forum series is sponsored by the NYA Parents’ Association.

THANK YOU!grandparents-day-2016-mk-14

Thank you to our parent volunteers for welcoming more than 200 grandparents to campus during Middle and Upper School Grandparents’ Day!  The weather was perfect, and the musical performances and senior speeches were impressive. The grandparents enjoyed their visit to campus, spending time in classes, and having lunch with their grandchildren. We appreciate the efforts of the many folks who helped put together this special event!


experiencenyaboxDo you know a family who might be interested in NYA? Prospective parents can attend one of our upcoming EXPERIENCE NYA events to learn more about our school. EXPERIENCE NYA includes coffee with Ben, followed by senior speeches and an optional campus tour. It’s a great way to get to know what NYA is all about. Visit the Admission Events page on our website or contact the admission office for information. Ask your friends to RSVP for the October 21 event today.



The NYA Library is once again holding its Book Sale at this year’s Holiday Craft Fair, and we would like your gently used, saleable books.  We will accept books for ANY age, young children through adults. You can drop off your books in the NYA Library or at the reception desks in the Lower and Middle Schools. Please contact Librarian Jill O’Connor with any questions.


Our Picture Retake Day with Coffee Pond Photography is scheduled for Wednesday, November 9 from 8:00-9:30 a.m. in the Middle School Community Room.


On Thursday, October 20, we will have our second Dress Down Day for our Thanksgiving Baskets and Holiday Families program ($3 donation).

On Wednesday, October 26, we will have a Dress Down Day sponsored by seventh grader Aisley Snell to benefit the Dean Snell Cancer Foundation, named after Aisley’s grandfather. $3 donation.


The sixth, seventh, and eighth grade trips from the first week in October were a great success. From nature journaling to sea kayaking to high ropes courses, students had the opportunity to connect, reflect, and work together.cow8thg_dbarschdorf-10-resize6thgradepeaks-5-resize


10/16-10/19  NEASC Accreditation Team Visit
10/20 Dress Down Day for Holiday Families $3.00
10/21 Seventh & Eighth Grade Dance 6:00-8:00 p.m.
10/21 Fifth & Sixth Grade Movie Night 6:00-8:00 p.m.
10/26 Last Day of MS fall sports
10/26 Dress Down Day for Dean Snell Cancer Foundation $3.00
10/27 Morning Forum with Ben Jackson, MSCR 8:00 a.m.
10/27 MS Athletic Celebration 2:30 p.m.
10/28 End of Quarter; No Middle School Sports
10/31 Halloween Costume Day and Parade
11/1-11/2 No Middle School Sports
11/2 Dress Down Day for Holiday Families $3.00
11/3 Parent-Teacher Conferences, 12:00-8:00 p.m. No School
11/4 Parent-Teacher Conferences, 8:00 a.m.-3:00 p.m. No School
11/7 Middle School Winter Sports Begin
11/10 Veterans’ Day Flag Pole Ceremony 7:50 a.m.
11/11 Veterans’ Day No School