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School News

Karen Lipski

May 9, 2019

Dear Parent or Guardian:

We strive to ensure that your child—and all Vernon Public Schools students—receive an education that prepares them to thrive in a global economy and in civic life.  That’s why Connecticut has adopted challenging academic standards, including the Connecticut Core Standards in mathematics and language arts, as well as the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS).  We expect that all our students will attain a firm grounding in mathematics, language arts, and science by the time they graduate from high school, preparing them to succeed in the future.  Our teachers and administrators are committed to working together to support students with excellent instruction and resources to meet these new expectations.

With these statewide learning goals, Connecticut needs ways to measure student progress.  Assessments are like academic checkups; they help teachers and parents see where students are, compared with where they need to be.  The results can reveal subject areas where a student is excelling and subject areas where a student needs extra help.  The state requires assessments in the subject areas of English language arts and mathematics using the Smarter Balanced Assessment at the elementary and middle school levels, and in Grade 11 using the SAT, which can also be used as a college entrance exam.  The state also requires assessments in science in Grades 5, 8, and 11, using the NGSS Assessments.

The NGSS Assessments for Grade 11 will take place at RHS from Ma 21-May 24 during junior students traditional science classes. 

The NGSS Assessments are administered on computers, and these assessments use real-world science applications and questions requiring students to show that they can use science and engineering practices to demonstrate their understanding of science content.  Sample items can be viewed through the Practice Tests.  The NGSS Assessments should take most students about 90 minutes to complete, although students can have as much time as they need to finish.  As with all statewide assessments, a variety of supports are available to all students, and additional accommodations are available for students with special needs, as determined by an individualized education program (IEP) or 504 Plan.

To find resources specifically for parents and guardians, including ways to help your child with the new standards at home, please visit CTCoreStandards.org/ or https://www.nextgenscience.org/parentguides/.  


Susan Czapla 
Principal RHS

Walter Nakonechny
Science Department Chair RHS

Karen Lipski

Avoiding Tick-borne diseases

Last year over 20,000 people in Connecticut were infected with Lyme disease from tick bites according to State and Federal Public Health officials. Other tick-borne diseases, such as Babesiosis and Powassan encephalitis,are also on the rise in the Northeast. Public Works, Park & Recreation, summer camp counselors and campers, athletic coaches and athletes, and other public school employees who work out-of-doors may be exposed to tick bites and the diseases they carry this summer.
Ways of avoiding tick bites include --

  • Stay on trails and paths, and avoid areas with high grasses and weedy underbrush.
  • Wear a hat and light-colored clothing (so ticks can be easily spotted), including long-sleeved shirts and long pants tucked into boots or socks.
  • Use insect repellents. Reapply repellents as needed. (Always follow products labels).
  • Use insecticides such as permethrin for greater protection on clothing, but not on skin. One application to pants, socks, and shoes may be effective through several washings.
  • Check skin and clothing for ticks daily.
  • Wash and dry work clothes using the "hot" settings to kill any ticks present.
  • Ticks should be removed immediately by using fine-tipped tweezers.

For more information on prevention, download the Center for Disease Control's NIOSH Fast Facts and CONN-OSHA's Quarterly newsletter on tick-borne disease. Also visit CIRMA's Tick bites and Tick-borne Disease page.