Upper School Newsletter for August 12, 2018

Dear Upper School Families,

I trust that you have all had a wonderful and relaxing summer so far!

We are delighted to welcome you all, both new and returning families, to the NYA community as we begin the 2018-2019 school year. It will be exciting to have most of our students on campus again as the fall preseason athletic practices commence in earnest this week. As we enjoy the remaining weeks of August, this first monthly Panther Roar newsletter provides some important back-to-school announcements and reminders as we all plan ahead for September.

In the meantime, please feel free to contact me with any questions via email, phone (846-9051), or by stopping in at the Main Office on the second floor of Curtis.

Eric Austin
Head of Upper School


New Middle and Upper School Orientation is on Monday, August 27 from 9:30 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. This is an opportunity for all new students to come to campus with your families, meet some of your teachers and classmates, and learn more about the Upper School at NYA.


All rising freshmen will take part in an orientation program here on campus from 12:00 to 3:30 p.m. on Monday, August 27, following the New Student Orientation earlier that morning. All students are invited to meet together in Safford Center at 12:00 p.m. for a lunch provided by NYA, followed by several informational sessions and some fun class-bonding activities. Dress for students is comfortable and casual. Freshmen will not be expected to attend their preseason practices that day.


We are excited to welcome the following new faculty and staff members to the Upper School:

  • Eliza Alexander joins the NYA Modern and Classical Languages Department. In addition to serving as our newly-appointed Department Chair, Eliza will be teaching all levels of Spanish. She returns to Maine after teaching Spanish at the Maret School in Washington, DC for the past 18 years. She also served in an administrative role as the Director of Community Engagement and Partnerships. She earned her B.A. from Smith College and an M.A. in Latin American Studies at George Washington University’s Elliot School. She began her teaching career at the Peddie School in New Jersey and Waynflete School in Portland. Please join us in welcoming Ms. Alexander back to Maine.
  • Daniel Chin joins the NYA Modern and Classical Languages Department as a French teacher in both the Upper and Middle Schools. Most recently, Daniel taught French and coached soccer and basketball at the Park School in Boston. Prior to the Park School, Daniel taught at the Fay School in Southborough, MA. He earned his B.A. in French and Biochemistry from Bowdoin College, and he will earn an M.A. in International Higher Ed and Intercultural Relations from Lesley College this year. Please join us in welcoming Mr. Chin back to Maine.
  • Morgan Lake Adams joins the NYA History Department. She will also coach Middle School Track. She earned her B.A. in History and Cinema from Wellesley College, an M.A. in History from Boston College, and she completed her coursework for her Ph.D. from Boston College. She is also an alumna of North Yarmouth Academy (Class of 1999). Most recently, she taught at Maine Girls’ Academy and oversaw classes in U.S. History, Ancient and Medieval History, World History, Ethics, Psychology, Sociology, and Social Justice. An avid runner, she has coached track and cross-country, and has been involved in the organization of the annual Beach to Beacon road race. Please join us in welcoming Ms. Adams back to NYA.
  • Jennifer Michaelis joins the NYA Mathematics Department as a Geometry and Statistics teacher. Most recently, Jennifer taught advanced mathematics at St. Dominic Academy, and she has extensive experience in STEM curriculum development. Jennifer earned her B.S. in Biomedical Engineering from Boston University, her M.A.T. in Secondary Mathematics from UNC-Chapel Hill, and she has completed work towards a Ph.D. program in Biology from UNC-Chapel Hill.  Additionally, she earned her J.D. from the University of Alabama.  Please join us in welcoming Ms. Michaelis (and her two children) to NYA.
  • Michelle Napoli joins the NYA community as our new School Counselor. Michelle earned her B.A. from the University of Miami and her M.S. in Counselor Education from USM. Michelle brings diverse experience in school-based counseling and private practice for students aged 5-18. Most recently, she served as a school counselor at Yarmouth’s Rowe School. With a diversity of experience providing counseling services to students of all ages, she will be available for all students at NYA.  Her office is on the second floor of Curtis. Please join us in welcoming Ms. Napoli to NYA.
  • Sagaree Sengupta joins the NYA English Department. Dr. Sengupta earned her B.A. in English from Cornell University, M.A. in Asian Studies from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and her Ph.D. in Asian and Middle Eastern Studies from University of Pennsylvania. For the last six years, Dr. Sengupta taught English, Creative Writing, and World Religions at Maine Girls’ Academy. She has additional experience throughout the state of Maine, including serving as a lecturer of History at Bates College. Please join us in welcoming Dr. Sengupta to NYA.
  • Mike Warde joins NYA as our Boys Varsity Hockey Coach. In addition to coaching, recruiting student athletes, and running clinics, he will also serve as a development officer. Mike most recently served as the Director of Hockey and Head Coach at Bridgton Academy where he served for five years. Mike has over 20 years of experience coaching at the preparatory school and NCAA Division I level. Prior to his time at Bridgton, Coach Warde served as the Chief Recruiter and Assistant Coach for the United States Military Academy at West Point. Please join us in welcoming Coach Warde to NYA.

The interview process is continuing for a few more openings, and we will make additional hiring announcements soon.


We are excited to welcome back Mike Gengras from his year away teaching English in Vienna, Austria. In addition to teaching English, Mr. Gengras will accompany Ms. Sullivan, our Dean of Students, by serving as our Assistant Dean of Students while overseeing student activities and our students’ Executive Council.


The Upper School Dean structure is set for the upcoming year, with the following faculty members serving as Grade Deans (who remain at that grade level each year) and Class Deans (who advance each year with the class):

  • Freshmen: Grade Dean (Mr. Gagne), Class Deans (Mr. Gengras & Ms. Alexander)
  • Sophomores: Grade Dean (Mr. Sillin), Class Deans (Ms. Hackleman & Mr. Chin)
  • Juniors: Grade Dean (Ms. Smith), Class Deans (Mr. Myer & Ms. Michaelis)
  • Seniors: Grade Dean (Ms. Sullivan), Class Deans (Ms. Lauerman & Dr. Sengupta)


While there will still be some additions to the Class Officers list for 2018-2019, the following students were elected by their classmates last spring to serve in their respective roles.  (The freshman class will have their elections early in the fall.)

President of the Executive Council:  Xander Kostelnik

Senior Class

President:  Avery Jackson

Vice President:  Maggie Larson

Secretary/Treasurer:  Hannah Gagne

Activities/Fundraising:  (open)

Athletic Council:  Maggie Larson & Alasdair Swett

Judiciary Committee: Alex Markonish & Alasdair Swett

Junior Class

President:  Mason Parks

Vice President:  Katie Larson

Secretary/Treasurer:  Ben Frank


Athletic Council:

Judiciary Committee:

Sophomore Class

President:  Laini Frager

Vice President:  Elizabeth Goodrich

Secretary/Treasurer:  Jack Thibodeau

Activities/Fundraising:  (open)

Athletic Council:  Natalie Farrell & Will Jackson

Judiciary Committee: Salem Griswold


The first day of school, Tuesday, September 4, is a Dress-Up Day:  dress pants/slacks (no shorts), with dress shirt, tie, and blazer; dress (longer than mid-thigh; no more than 3 inches above the knee); skirt (longer than mid-thigh) or professional dress pants with blouse or dress top.

The opening Convocation will take place at 7:45 a.m. in Grizzy’s Quad (behind the Mertz Science Center). The rain location is the NYA gym. This is a special gathering for all members of the NYA community (students, parents, faculty, and staff) to start off the new school year. After Convocation, parents are invited to join the NYA Parents’ Association for coffee as students head off for their day. 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 in the quad. Seating for students is done by class. Students may leave their bags and equipment in their lockers or in the classroom of their advisory.

There will be no music class on the first day. Remember to bring your instruments beginning on Wednesday, September 5. This first day will be an A-day on the schedule, with advisory meetings directly following the Convocation. Teachers will let students know of the materials needed for their courses. Students should bring summer reading and assignments along with a notebook of some kind for the first day.


The second day of school (Wednesday, September 6) is picture day. This is a Dress-Up Day. Both class pictures and individual portraits will be taken, and the portraits will be used in the student directory (distributed in late September or early October). Families also will have the opportunity to purchase portraits.


For all parents of seniors:  Please join Katherine and Steve Thomas for a nuts-and-bolts program that will focus on what to expect from the upcoming college application process. We will gather in the Middle School Community Room bright and early on Friday morning, September 7, at 7:00 a.m. and look forward to your participation.


On Wednesday night, September 12, from 6:00 – 6:45 in the Middle School Community Room, all ninth grade parents are invited to hear more about the ninth grade experience. The discussion will include such topics as academic expectations, daily and weekly routines, extracurricular opportunities, as well as ways to help support your child. There will be a short agenda with time for questions. This meeting is intended as a precursor to Upper School Parent Night, which follows directly afterwards, beginning at 6:45 p.m. in Safford Center.


Parents, please mark your calendars for Upper School Parent Night on Wednesday, September 12 at 6:45 p.m. Parents will first convene in Safford Center for a brief introduction and announcements, and will then have the opportunity to visit their student’s classes, meet their teachers, and learn about the curriculum. This event is just for parents. We look forward to seeing all of the Upper School parents for this informational evening!


Please remember that the 2018 Summer Assignments must be completed for the first day of school. All students have summer reading assignments in English. In addition, students who are continuing their language studies in French, Latin, or Spanish have summer assignments to help keep up their knowledge of the language after time away. There are also summer assignments for students in AP history and science classes.


All students enrolled in a mathematics class in the Upper School must own a Texas Instruments TI-84 graphing calculator.  These calculators can be purchased either online or in local stores, and they operate on four AAA batteries. Students only need to purchase this calculator once, as it is the calculator used for all levels of mathematics at NYA throughout the students’ high school years.


It is essential that we have current health forms on file for every student at NYA. If you have not already done so, please complete all necessary health forms as soon as possible and turn them in to the Health Office. Contact Ashley Moody with any questions.


Additional forms, such as the Off-Campus Travel and Athletic Permission Forms, can be found in New Family Forms and Returning Family Forms under the Parents tab on the NYA website. Please be sure to complete and turn in all necessary forms as soon as possible.


All students received draft schedules earlier in the summer primarily intended for textbook purchasing. Some academic schedules may remain exactly the same, but other schedules will have changes and additions that will include music and art classes, study halls, and locker numbers. Some schedule changes may include class time and/or location changes. Advisors will hand out complete, up-to-date schedules at advisory on the first day. Be sure to discard any other schedules and to use only this new schedule. Up-to-date schedules can also be accessed at any time through Family Web.


Some reminders about the daily dress code:

  • Skirts, dresses, kilts (longer than mid-thigh; no more than 3 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)

Please see the full details of the dress code in the Upper School Student and Parent Handbook.


The school day at NYA begins at 8:00 a.m. With the exception of seniors, all students should be in class by 7:58 a.m. Students who arrive late should check in with Ms. Lathrop at the Middle School Reception Desk. Parents should call the Main Office (846-9051) or email Heidi Lathrop by 8:15 a.m. if a student will be absent all day, will arrive late, or will be dismissed early. It is our policy to call the parents of students who are not accounted for.


Students may either bring food and drink for break and lunch or purchase them from the cafeteria. Families may set up dining accounts through “myschoolaccount.com” or pay with cash. Contact Lisa McGlinn in the Business Office with any questions. Lunch menus are available on Family Web.


Student drivers must register annually the vehicle(s) that they intend to drive to school with the Main Office by Monday, September 17. All student vehicles are required to have a numbered parking sticker.


We are collecting any unneeded textbooks to use as classroom spares or to pass on to students in need. Books may be dropped off in the library or in the box under the sign-in table in the Middle School. This is a great time to clean out those backpacks and bookshelves. We appreciate your generosity!


Join in the fun! The First Annual Maine Cornhole Championship will be held at NYA on Thursday, August 23 from 4:00 to 7:00 p.m. Proceeds from this event will benefit the Rotary Club of Portland’s service projects and Boys & Girls Clubs of Southern Maine scholarship fund at North Yarmouth Academy, which provides full-tuition scholarships to Club members to attend NYA. It is just $100 per team to play in this bracket-elimination tournament that will include food, drinks, music, fun-spirited competition, and great prizes! FMI and to register, visit www.nya.org/cornhole.  


We are delighted to be welcoming Dr. Ross Greene to NYA on Tuesday, September 18. Dr. Greene is a child psychologist and founder of the non-profit organization, Lives in the Balance, originator of the Collaborative and Proactive Solutions (CPS) approach, and a best-selling author. During the afternoon, Dr. Greene will be speaking with students and presenting to faculty and staff. We hope that you will be able to join us at 5:00 p.m. in the Middle School Community Room for the parent session with Dr. Greene. A huge thank you to the NYA Parents’ Association for bringing Dr. Greene to campus.


Please mark your calendars for Middle and Upper School Grandparents’ Day coming up on Friday, October 12.  Lower School Grandparents’ Day will be on May 10, 2019.  To ensure that all grandparents and grandfriends are invited, please provide us with updated grandparent contact information.


Looking to bring more fresh, local, and mostly organic fruits and vegetables into your life? Well look no further! NYA is pleased to once again serve as a pick-up site for Fall & Winter Farm Shares from Wolf Pine Farms in Alfred, ME. A winter share is seven boxes delivered from October to March and generally includes storage vegetables (potatoes, carrots, onions, etc.), fruits (apples), a dozen eggs, grains (oats, wheat flour), frozen berries (blueberries, cranberries), and a “special treat” (raw honey, Maine sea salt, mushrooms, or maple syrup). It is even possible to split a share with another family. Visit Wolf Pine Farms to learn more or sign up.


Want to look, move, and feel better than you have in years? Come train with Shelby! Fall Bootcamp is being offered at NYA’s Travis Roy Ice Arena from September 5 through November 16 (11 weeks). For more information, contact Shelby via email.


8/13 Fall Preseason Practices Begin
8/23 First Annual Maine Cornhole Championship 4:00-7:00 p.m.
8/27 New Middle & Upper School Student Orientation 9:30 a.m – 12:00 p.m.
8/27 Freshman Orientation 12:00 – 3:30 p.m.
9/4 Convocation, Griswold Quad 7:45 a.m.
9/4 First Day of School; Dress-Up Day (A-Day)
9/5 Picture Day; Dress-Up Day (B-Day)
9/7 Senior Parent College Program, MSCR  7:00 a.m.
9/12 Freshman Parent Gathering, MSCR 6:00 – 6:45 p.m.
9/12 Upper School Parent Night, Safford Center 6:45 p.m.
9/13 Middle School Parent Night, MSCR 6:30 p.m.
9/18 Dr. Ross Greene Parent Session, MSCR 5:00-6:30 p.m.
9/27-9/29 Come Home to NYA: Homecoming and Reunion
9/27 Head of School Circle Dinner 6:00 p.m.
9/28 Athletic Hall of Fame Induction, NYA Gym 10:15 a.m.
9/28 Homecoming Festivities and BBQ 2:30-7:30 p.m.
9/29 Steve Morris Alumni & Friends Golf Tournament, Falmouth Country Club 12:00 p.m.
10/8 Columbus Day NO SCHOOL
10/12 Middle & Upper School Grandparents’ Day; Dress Up Day


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