By: Maria Moore
Several days ago we published a News Update for New Hartford Schools which has been consistently accessed by readers; see our August 29 report. Â Following is a similar round-up of Northwestern Regional # 7 information which we hope will be just as useful to parents of middle and high school students.
The Regional # 7 school calendar for 2009-2010 is available in several different formats:
- As a PDF in the School Calendars section of the Northwestern Regional # 7 website.
- As a printable, 8 1/2″ x 11″ PDF available for download:Regional # 7 Calendar (181)
- As a flyer posted in our Community Bulletin Board, where it will be available through the end of the school year.
School Bus Routes and Schedules
School bus routes and schedules for New Hartford Schools, as well as Northwestern Regional # 7, as well as for New Hartford schools, are available on the Bus Routes and Schedules section of the Dattco website, where you may access the bus schedule that applies for your specific area.
Highlander Fund Focuses On Telescope
They may not be members of the same clan from the Scottish Highlands, nor are they aficionados of Duncan MacLeod, the immortal swordsman of the ‘Highlander’ movies, but the board members of the Highlander Fund are joined by their strong interest in providing students at Northwestern Regional # 7 with enrichment opportunities that they would not otherwise have access to.
Made up of representatives of the different member towns of Regional # 7, the group has set itself the goal of establishing an endowment fund that will “provide a stable source of funding outside the operating budget of the school for programs such as fine and performing arts, academics, clubs, and other non-required school programs.”
Foundation members emphasize that the type of programs they are looking to fund would not normally be funded by the school because of budgetary restraints. Â One such program which the Foundation members are eagerÂ to fund is a Robotics program, which Regional # 7 doesn’t offer. Â The Robotics program is sponsored by CT FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology), an organization founded in 1989 by Dean Kamen to inspire young people’s interest and participation in science and technology. Â The 2009 Robotics CT Regional Competition, held at the Connecticut Convention Center in Hartford, had over 1,500 high school students Â participating from 60 schools, and included school districts such as Litchfield, Avon, Farmington and Glastonbury; see theÂ FIRST Robotics Competition – 2009 CT Regional website to read more about this program.
The first project the Foundation is hoping to fund, however, is that of providing an observatory building to house the beautiful telescope that was recently donated to the school by a couple from Norfolk. Â That telescope does not have a permanent location where it can be easily accessed; instead, it is stored in a closet in one of the science teachers’ classrooms. Â When housed in its own observatory, the telescope will be available to the fledgling Astronomy Club at Regional # 7 which Mr. Guy Hayes, Science Teacher, is starting this year. Â The Foundation also hopes that the telescope will be used by other area Astronomy Clubs.
The Highlander Foundation has estimated it will need $12,000 for the observatory building and its members are currently raising funds for this project. Â The Foundation has received the support of the Alcoa Foundation through Highlander Board member Keith Blanchard’s employer, Alcoa Howmet of Winsted. Â With the support of the Alcoa Foundation and Alcoa employees, the Highlander board members will be holding a Stargazing Night at Regional # 7 on Saturday October 17 at 7:00 p.m. with fun activities for the whole family; we will provide more information in a News Update as details become available.
Highlander Foundation members are also contacting area organizations for their support, including the New Hartford Lions Club and New Hartford Community Connections. Â They are also looking to individual members of the community to donate as much, or as little, as they can to the Highlander Fund. Â Please see the Donations section of the Highlander Fund website to learn how to make a tax-deductible donation to the Highlander Fund.
Editor’s Note: With students back at school today, this is a great time to think about how we, as a community, can enhance our children’s learning experiences. Â With the Highlander Fund now established, it has been made much easier for us to help provide our middle school and high school students with extra-curricular programs which will help them excel in the future. Â We look forward to reporting on future activities sponsored by the Highlander Fund.
The Highlander Fund Board of Directors meets every month at the New Hartford Town Hall. Â Their next meeting will be this coming Thursday, September 3, at 6:00 p.m. Â They welcome everyone to their meetings.
For more information on the Highlander Fund, including how to submit a grant application Â to the fund, and how to make a donation either directly on their site through PayPal or by regular mail, please see the Highlander Fund website.
The members of the Highlander Fund Board of Directors are as follows:
- Greg Cantwell, President, Barkhamsted;
- Joseph Veronesi, Vice President, Norfolk;
- Robert King, Treasurer,Winsted;
- Paula Morabito, Secretary, Canton.
- Board Members:
- Keith Blanchard, Pleasant Valley;
- Manuel Cords, Colebrook;
- Stephen Egbertson, Barkhamsted;
- Jean Lafave,Â New Hartford;
- Frank Thompson, Colebrook.
- Ex-Officio: Clint Montgomery, Northwestern Regional # 7 Superintendent, Canton.
Many thanks to Jean Lafave, for her devotion to the well-being of the students at Regional # 7, expressed through her many years of service on the Regional # 7 Board of Education, and now through her membership on the Highlander Fund.
Many thanks to Jean also for her willingness to share her knowledge of Regional # 7 with our reporter, so that she might, in turn, share it with our readers.