Panther Roar Newsletter Header 2020

Upper School Newsletter for February 27, 2022

The second semester of the school year is well underway and we are now less than a month from the mid-semester mark, which occurs after the upcoming two-week March break. This semester midpoint will provide an opportunity for advisors and teachers to assess the ongoing progress of each student with regard to current successes, potential challenges, overall effort level, and initial discussion of course selection for the next school year. Parent/Advisor conferences will occur at the beginning of April to discuss student progress with an eye towards identifying those strengths, challenges, and opportunities for improvement. This current month of February also marks the annual re-enrollment period for all returning families, with a February 28 deadline. This process assists in initial planning for course sectioning and academic scheduling in anticipation for next fall.

We wish all of our families a wonderful upcoming March break!

Eric Austin
Head of Upper School


Enrollment agreements were sent out earlier this month with a February 28 deadline. Staffing and schedules for next year will be constructed based on agreements submitted by the deadline. Space is limited in several grades and re-enrollment cannot be guaranteed after February 28. Thank you!


Friday, March 4 will be an early release day to allow faculty and staff time for professional development meetings. School will run from 8:00-11:30 a.m. with a special class schedule. We will have morning snack, but lunch will not be served. Students should plan to be picked up at 11:30 a.m. and we wish you all a wonderful spring break!


The Stock Market Club is looking for guest speakers! We’ve had two speakers so far, and students are always eager to hear from experts in their field. Topics can range from entrepreneurship to how to understand the market or really anything related to working in the world of finance. Interested parents or friends of NYA can reach out to club advisor Jennifer Michaelis or to any of the members of our Stock Market Club.


A well-deserved congratulations goes out to senior Jack Schaeffer who was recently named a National Merit Finalist. This is an extraordinary honor and distinction for Jack. He now has the opportunity to continue in the competition for about 7,500 National Merit Scholarships. Additionally, Jack was a recent nominee for the U.S. Presidential Scholars program, further recognizing him for his excellent academic achievements in high school. Congratulations, Jack!


Thanks to the student Executive Council for all of their work in planning for Spirit Week! Leading up to March Break, we will have a week of special dress days and morning break/lunchtime activities including Name That Tune, spikeball, dodgeball, volleyball, and others. The plan for special dress days for the week is as follows:

Monday: Pajama Day
Tuesday: Twin/Dress as a group day
Wednesday: Anything but a backpack day
Thursday: Groutfit day (wear all grey)
Friday: Beach day

Students who choose not to take part in the special dress must be in regular NYA dress code.


The last couple of weeks have included the return of tournament action for many of our Winter Athletic programs. Hats off to our Indoor Track and Field Team for their showing in the Class B State meet, specifically Justin Corporon who medaled in two events! Our Nordic ski team competed in the State race this past week. We are looking forward to seeing the growth of the Nordic Team next season. Boys basketball finished their season as the Class C South #6 seed and saw the season end in a Class C South quarter-final match-up. Our girls basketball team claimed the Class C South #3 seed and was defeated by #1 Hall-Dale Saturday in a hard fought game. They finish the season as the Class C South runners-up. Congratulations to basketball seniors Elliot Oney and Lila Jackson on their McDonalds All-Academic Team honors! Our boys hockey program returned to a full NEPSAC competitive season, traveling throughout New England. They finished their season with a semi-final loss to eventual Holt Conference Champion Worchester Academy. And finally, our girls hockey program also returned to NEPSAC play, finishing their season with strong outings against in-state and prep rivals at Travis Roy Arena. We are so proud of the successes each team earned this season, and thank everyone for the support they provided to make them happen.

The Spring Activity seasons begin with a number of team meetings the week of February 28th. Student-athletes should be on the lookout for emails regarding specific team details. The official seasons begin with:

  • Baseball pitchers and catchers only, Monday, March 21st
  • Baseball full-team, lacrosse, outdoor track and field, and tennis, Monday, March 28th

Coaches will send an email to all rostered student-athletes and families regarding necessary equipment, practice plans, and competition schedule information. We look forward to full competitive seasons, as well as traditional State Tournament action this spring!

We need to fill the following coaching positions:

  • JV/Varsity Assistant Girls Lacrosse
  • Associate Head Coach Boys Tennis (JV/V)

Please encourage any interested candidates to call or email Athletic Director, Kelsy Ross (207-847-5456.


All Upper School Spanish, French, and Latin language students will be taking National Language Exams in the coming months. The Grand Concours, the National Latin Exam, and the National Spanish Exam will be given with awards announced in later in the spring. In addition, some students are also taking exams for the Maine Seal of Biliteracy, awarded at graduation. Other students have already qualified for the Seal of Biliteracy based on exceptional performance on AP language exams. Eliot Grady, our Modern and Classical Language Department Chair, will be overseeing these exams which provide our students with the opportunity to earn recognition by demonstrating their linguistic proficiencies.


Two Virtual Panther Chats via Zoom were planned again this year for prospective Middle and Upper School families. They include Q&A opportunities with students, faculty, and administrators. A chat about Middle School Life occurred back on February 16, and a chat about Upper School Life will be held on March 2.

More details for all admission events can be found on our website. Please encourage your friends and neighbors to join us to learn more about an NYA education and what it might mean for their children.


After we return from March break, students will begin working with their teachers and advisors to begin developing their preferred course selection for next September. Soon afterwards, a schedule template will be designed to best accommodate the choices of all re-enrolled students. This is always an exciting time for students to begin thinking about next year’s opportunities.

Parents should begin talking with their children about course selection over break in preparation for the registration process. Students will also be selecting their music and art courses as well as choosing their afternoon option for each season from the available athletic and drama offerings. In addition, rising 10th, 11th, and 12th grade students will be discussing specific AP course interests they may have in preparation for testing prompts in May in order to obtain the respective departmental approval. Additionally, we will be providing reminders to all students for application deadlines for fall semester Independent Study proposals as well as initial intent to pursue a Diploma Distinction with the respective Advisor of each program.

The Curriculum Guide details the course offerings in each department. We look forward to talking more with all students after break to review options and answer any questions before students begin course selection. For any department-specific questions, feel free to reach out directly to any specific department chair:

English: Ross Markonish

History: Peter Sillin

Mathematics: Jennifer Michaelis

Modern & Classical Languages: Eliot Grady

Science: Liz Smith

Visual & Performing Arts: Linda Vaillancourt


Mark your calendars for the spring music concerts! Fifth Grade Arts Night will be Thursday, May 5 in Higgins Hall. The spring concerts for Middle and Upper School music ensembles will be under a tent on Denney Field. The Instrumental Concert will be on Wednesday, May 11 and the Choral Concert will be on Friday, May 13. Stay tuned for additional information closer to the events.


In celebration of World Down Syndrome Day on Monday, March 21, we will hold a Dress Down Day to benefit Ruby’s Rainbow. The vision of this organization is, “A world that celebrates people with Down syndrome and supports the pursuit of higher education, employment, acceptance and inclusion for people of all abilities.” $3 donation.

The Gender and Sexuality Alliance (GSA) is sponsoring a Dress Down Day for Rainbow Railroad, an organization that works in support of LGBTQI+ people around the globe. Dress down and bring in a $3 donation on Thursday, March 31, International Transgender Day of Visibility.


Save the date–Friday, June 3, 2022, for the annual NYA Soirée. You will not want to miss this great evening of entertainment, camaraderie, and support for NYA. Please plan to join parents, alumni, grandparents, faculty, and friends under the event tent on the NYA campus.

If you are interested in getting involved, please email Crystal Gordon. Specifically, we are looking for event organizers to serve on a committee with other parents to help with event logistics, secure donated items for the silent and live auctions, and assist with corporate sponsorships. We’d love your support to ensure this event is a success!


3/2Panther Chat: Upper School Life via Zoom9:45 – 10:30 a.m.
3/4Early Release Day; Professional Development8:00 – 11:30 a.m.
3/7 – 3/18March BreakNO SCHOOL
3/21Classes Resume
3/21Dress Down Day for Ruby’s Rainbow$3
3/25End of Third Quarter
3/28Opening Day of Spring Athletic Season
3/31Dress Down Day for Rainbow Railroad$3
3/31Parent-Advisor Conferences Begin
4/18Patriots’ DayNO SCHOOL
4/19Professional Development DayNO SCHOOL


Facebook – North Yarmouth Academy Page, NYA Parents’ Association Group, NYA Athletics Page
YouTube – North Yarmouth Academy
Twitter – @NYAToday
Flickr – nyatoday
Instagram – Ben Jackson HOS
Instagram – northyarmouthacademy