Thursday, January 16, 2014

Hunt PTO Update 1/16/14

Hunt PTO Update

PTO Meeting tonight at 6:30 pm in the library.  Come at 6pm to hear Amy Mellencamp speak about changes in the High school that will affect incoming 9th graders

 Don't forget to check out the jam-packed January HMS newsletter for information YOU need:

  • Update from the Principal
  • News from the Superintendent
  • Info on Hunt's BRAND NEW and awesome visual arts website
  • STOP & VKAT news
  • PAWS winners for December
  • News from the Burlington Partnership for a Healthy Community
  • Middle Years news insert
  • Updates on what your child's team is studying
  • ...AND MUCH MORE!!
  • Click here to read on:

Amy Mellancamp to speak to parents of 8th graders

 In an effort to keep you informed of what lies ahead for our 8th graders and their families, Amy Mellencamp (Principal of Burlington H.S.) and Mr. Amato have scheduled an informational meeting to take place at Hunt Middle School. The meeting will be held on Thursday, January 16th at 6pm in the Hunt library, just prior to the Hunt PTO mtg., which begins at 6:30 pm. Parents of current Hunt 8th grade students are encouraged to attend. The information that will be presented is specifically for parents of 8th grade students; however, all parents are welcome. There will be an orientation night for current 8th graders and parents at BHS, on the evening of January 30th.

Keep on top of school budget updates - info from BSD website:

West Side Story Audition sign-ups are now up!  Sign-ups for cast and crew can be found on the bulletin board to the left of the auditorium doors in the lobby.  Besides signing up, students need to grab a permission packet with forms to sign, fundraising information and a page full of practice dates and performances.     All forms are due in by January 22nd.  

Questions can be directed to Shirin Hart at or Jessica Story-Huston at  Forms didn't make it home???  The text from the forms is included at the end of this post - only the first two pages need to come back to the office. (just past the Calendar)  or click on this googledoc to print form:

2014 Principal Search Process and 
Timeline for Hunt Middle School

As you are aware, Rich Amato has been serving as interim principal for the Hunt Middle School for the last two years. The District has embarked on a search seeking to permanently fill the position. The position was posted on December 15, 2013 and will close on January 15, 2014. This closing date may be extended if the District Hiring Administrator determines that the applicant pool is insufficient.

The District is committed to Affirmative Recruitment and encourages underrepresented individuals to apply. It is our policy not to engage in unlawful employment discrimination on the basis of race, gender, color, age, creed, religion, disability, handicap, ancestry, place of birth, national origin, marital status, political affiliation, sexual orientation, gender identity or gender expression.

Principal Search Advisory Committee Composition

The Superintendent has asked the District Hiring Administrator to convene a Principal Search Advisory Committee. PSAC members are to represent the District as a whole rather than as individuals and are required to put aside any personal agendas and biases to ensure that each candidate has an honest and fair evaluation and that the District’s best interests are properly served. A copy of the PSAC Charge can be found on the BSD website.

The committee will have no less than 3 members and no more than 10 (preferably 8). The composition of the PSAC shall serve to advance the District’s commitment to the principles of diversity and equal employment opportunity. As such, the membership of the PSAC should reflect the diverse nature of the District, whenever possible. The PSAC is to be comprised of the following whenever possible:

· At least one principal and one district administrator

· At least one classroom teacher and special services provider

· At least two parents or Burlington community members

· Membership to include diverse backgrounds, including those who may speak a first language other than English and persons with disabilities.

· Membership to reflect a gender balance.

The District Hiring Administrator is responsible for appointing members of the PSAC and is also responsible for maintaining an environment where all members of the PSAC can fully participate in the process. The Hiring Administrator will provide updates on the search process on the BSD website as deemed appropriate.

The District Hiring Administrator has appointed the members of the Hunt Middle School principal search advisory committee (PSAC). The members are:

Bonnie Johnson-Aten,  Building Administrator
Jeff Fournier,  District Administrator
Valerie Lodish,  Faculty/Staff
Josepha Austin,  Special Educator
J.P. Gagnon,  Classroom Teacher
Tom Burke,  Parent/Community
Meg Cline,   Parent/Community

Interview Input Meetings

Input into the selection of candidates from faculty, staff and parents is an important part of the process. These meetings will allow the expression of concerns about HMS and attributes desired for the principal of HMS through the development of questions for the candidate interviews. There will be both a faculty/staff input meeting and parent/community input meeting as follows:

Parent/Community Input Meeting     * January 15 *HMS 6-7:30 p.m.- happened yesterday...

Candidate Interview Sessions

Candidate interviews are scheduled for January 27, January 29 and Feb 4 (if necessary) Up to 6 candidates will be selected for final interviews (2 candidates interviewed per date above). To ensure opportunity for broader faculty/staff and parent input for the PSAC and the superintendent to consider in the final selection, each candidate will interview in front of Faculty/ Staff and parents/community members. These interviews are open to anyone interested and feedback will be gathered at the end of each interview.

Faculty/Staff interviews will be from 3:15-5:15 and parent/community interviews will be from 6:30-8:30 on Jan. 27, 29 and Feb 4. All written comments will be gathered and provided to the PSAC and the superintendent. 

NOTE: Parents are welcome during the school day, and after school on the above dates to meet the candidates if that is more convenient.  The candidates will spend the day at school, meeting students, looking in on classes and getting to know the Hunt school culture.

The PSAC will meet and provide the superintendent with its impressions and recommendations. The superintendent anticipates making a final decision on or about February 14, 2014 provided no extension of the process is necessary.

More information : (taken from BSD website - Human Resources page)

Coming Soon to Lyman C. Hunt Middle School

Family Book Discussion Evening -

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

 The Hunt Family School Partnership invites you and your

middle-schooler to choose a free book

and gather for an evening of discussion and dinner.

1.     January 6 - 24 – select a book and register on the Hunt Homepage Registration forms may also be picked up in the main office or the library. Child care will be provided, please note this on the registration.

2.     January 26 – 31 - Hunt students can pick up the books and discussion questions during the school day or after school until 4:00 in the library.

3.     February – March 10 – read the book of your choice together or separately and discuss it at home prior to 3/11.

4.     March 11 – come to the Hunt Library for an evening of pizza and small group discussion with other families who have read the same book. Hunt staff will facilitate the discussions

The books we have chosen for discussion are the following:
The Golden-Threaded Dress

The Gold Threaded Dress by Carolyn Marsden – 73 pages.  When Oy and her Thai American family move to a new neighborhood, her third-grade classmates tease and exclude her because she is different. Oy, has to decide what she will give up to fit in. What would you do if the most popular girl demanded that you bring your special dress to school, or else?

Out of My Mind by Sharon Draper – 295 pages. Eleven year – old Melody has a photographic memory. Her head is like a video camera that is always recording. Always. And there’s no delete button. She’s the smartest kid in her whole school – but NO ONE knows it.
Most people – her teachers and doctors included don’t think she’s capable of learning, and up until recently her school days consisted of listening to the same preschool-level alphabet lessons again and again and again. If only she could speak up, if only she could tell people what she thinks and knows. But she can’t. She can’t talk. She can’t walk. She can’t write.

Being stuck inside her head is making Melody go out of her mind – that is, until she discovers something that will allow her to speak for the first time ever. At last Melody has a voice…but not everyone around her is ready to hear it.
The Book Thief
The Book Thief by Markus Zusak – 552 pages. Set during World War II in Germany, Markus Zusak's groundbreaking new novel is the story of Liesel Meminger, a foster girl living outside of Munich. Liesel scratches out a meager existence for herself by stealing when she encounters something she can't resist, books. With the help of her accordion–playing foster father, she learns to read and shares her stolen books with her neighbors during bombing raids as well as with the Jewish man hidden in her basement before he is marched to Dachau. This is an unforgettable story about the ability of books to feed the soul.
If you have any questions, please feel free to call the library 865-4164 or email me at:

Diane Pawlusiak
Teacher Librarian
Lyman C. Hunt Middle School
1364 North Avenue
Burlington, Vermont 05408

**Save the date for Hunt's Annual Dance Party!! 

February 15th**

Dance party at St. John's Club on Sat., February 15th, 7-11pm to benefit the Hunt Middle School Drama Club --  Adults Only! 

Suggested donation $20 per person/$30 per couple and includes delicious appetizers and desserts. Cash bar with great prices, 50/50 raffle, and terrific silent auction. All proceeds benefit the middle school production of West Side Story in April. This dance party is a blast and ALL adults are welcome, not just parents of students in the play!! Contact Susan Rutherford at 951-2571 for ticket purchase, to make a donation, or for more information. Come support the arts!

An invite from the Hunt administration to YOU...

Parent Coffee

Principal/Parent Coffee

Friday, January 31st, 2014, 8:10am to 8:55am

Have coffee or tea with our Principals. Tell us what's on your mind. Let us know what's working or what's not working. Ask questions or just chat and relax with us in our library. Friday. January 31st, morning at 8:10am.
Don't forget to save those Box Tops for Education! You will find them on many specially marked packages of foods and products you buy everyday. All proceeds from Box Tops go directly to the Hunt School Student Council. 

Just take these 3 Easy Steps:

1. Cut Box Tops for Education from specially marked packages of products you purchase already.

2. Save these Box Tops in a bag or envelope.

3. Send these Box Tops to school. You or your student can place the Box Tops in the specially marked can in the Hunt main office. 

Can't find the can? Ask Ms. Virun, who can show you. 

Happy Holiday everyone and thanks for saving Box Tops for Education!! 

Making room for new shoes and boots for the holidays? Do you have shoes and boots that you won't wear anymore, but don't want to throw them into the landfills?

Well, have no fear! The Hunt Student Council collects pre-loved shoes and boots and sends them to "Shoe Box Recycling". Want to know what "Shoe Box Recycling" does with your shoes? or a Student Council member.

See the specially marked "Shoe Box" collection receptacle in Hunt's Main lobby and thanks for supporting the Hunt Student Council-who support your kids!!

Save the Date!
  • January 13th-21 - Play Sign-ups for West Side Story
  • January 16th  - 6pm - Amy Mellencamp will meet with 8th Grade parents to talk about changes at BHS that will affect students entering BHS next Fall.
  • January 16th - January PTO Meeting - 6:30-8pm in the library
  • January 20th - No School - MLK Day
  • January 22 - Permission slips due back for West Side Story
  • January 26st - 31st- HMS students pick up books and discussion questions for FBDE
  • January 27th - 2nd Quarter Report Cards Go Home
  • January 30th - 8th Grade Orientation @ BHS
  • January 31st - Coffee with the Principal, 8:10 am
  • February - March 10th - Read the FBDE book of your choice and discuss at home prior to March 11th
  • February 15th - Annual Dance Party @ St. John's Club (adults only)
  • Tuesday, March 11th - Family Book Discussion Evening

This form must be completed in full and returned to the front office by

*** Wednesday, January 22, 2014 ***


To be in the cast of West Side Story, you MUST return this form no later than Wednesday, January 22, 2014.  It must be signed by both the student and parent/guardian.


Please initial.

 I have received and read the following attached pages:

o   Important Information About West Side Story

o   West Side Story Fundraising


Please initial.

____ My child has my permission and support to participate in the musical. 

____I agree to volunteer to help make the musical a success.

____I agree to assure that my child attends all dress rehearsals and performances.

____I give consent for my child to be digitally recorded as part of the musical and to appear in related materials.

Please initial. 

____ I pledge to attend all rehearsals and performances of West Side Story. 

____ I pledge to be attentive and respectful to everyone involved in the play, including Very Merry staff, HMS staff, parents/guardians and my peers.

____ I understand that if I fail to uphold my promise, I will lose the privilege of participating in West Side Story. 


Student Name: __________________________________________________________  Grade: _____

Parent/Guardian Name:_______________________________________ Phone No:____________________

Cell: _________________________

Parent/Guardian E-mail address(es):____________________________________________________________

Important Information About West Side Story


Dear Hunt Parents and Guardians:

If your child has signed up to audition or to be on the crew for Hunt’s annual musical collaboration with Very Merry Theatre, YOU MUST RETURN THE SIGNED PERMISSION SLIP BELOW BY Wednesday, January 22, 2014. Every student who auditions will be cast in the musical.  The musical is WEST SIDE STORY.

Here are some important dates you should mark on your calendar:

Cast Auditions

o   January 28, 29, and 30, after school in Hunt auditorium

Set building:     Saturday, January 29, 2014 


o   Rehearsals will take place Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Thursdays, and occasional Fridays, at 3:30 pm (or 2:20pm on Wednesdays), beginning in early February

o   Mandatory Tech/Dress rehearsal for cast and crew:  Sunday, March 30, 2014, 11:30am–4:30pm

o   Mandatory dress rehearsal for cast and crew: Monday, March 31, 2014, 3pm-7pm

o   Mandatory dress rehearsal for cast and crew: Wednesday, April 2,  2014, 3pm-7pm

Special Workshop

o   On Thurs, April 3rd from 2pm to 2:50pm the production team and cast will present to the Hunt staff and students a workshop on how the elements of a theatrical production such as WSS are put together. Several pieces from the show will be performed. A performance follows at 3:30: see below.


o   Performances: Thursday, April 3, 2014, 3:30pm

o   Evening performance: Friday, April 4, 2014, 7:00pm

o   Final performance: Saturday, April 5, 2014, 7:00pm

West Side Story Fundraising

West Side Story!

April 3, 4, & 5, 2014

Inspire kids to think outside their everyday experience. Create magic on stage!

Invest in a strong community for our kids.

Providing an exciting experience through performing, the Hunt Theatre Program gives our children a chance to step outside their everyday identity, to soar, build confidence and have fun. Help us continue to bring the Arts to Hunt through this amazing opportunity.

Putting on a show takes lots of time, parent volunteer hours, and it costs money. 

Total Estimated Cost:  ~$8,925 of West Side Story

Cost Estimate Break-down: 

$500       costumes, make-up & hair supplies

$800       personnel – music, set-up, lighting

$200       rehearsal/performance snacks and supplies

$500       Artist-in-Residence to work with our cast & crew

$4,000 Very Merry Theater

$1,175 license for West Side Story use

$1,500 lighting equipment for Hunt’s performing arts areas

$250       cost of printing Play Bill to be determined based on number of pages

What we have to date:  $4,150

PTO gift of $400 ($5 per child in the play)

VT Arts Council Artists in Schools Grant $2500

Choir Bake Sale $150

Band Bake Sale $200

Williston Rest Stop Bake Sale $400

Anonymous Donation $500

WE need your help to raise $4,775

There are many ways to help offset the financial cost of putting on West Side Story.

Please join US in a variety of ways: 

*  DANCE -- Saturday, February 15th from 7-11pm

An adult only evening of dancing and fun at the St. John’s Club at 9 Central Ave. including appetizers, desserts, a 50/50 raffle, silent auction, and cash bar. Purchase tickets in advance or any remaining tickets at the door. Price of $20 per person/$30 per couple.  Leave checks with the school secretary in the main office and be sure to write “Dance Tickets” in the memo line.

*  DINNER -- Friday, April 4th, the first evening presentation of the West Side Story, the Drama Committee will present an International flavored dinner including salad, drinks, and desserts.   Last year this dinner raised $700, we would like to raise more this year!

*  Play Bill “Shout Outs’ to cast & crew – messages to be included in the performance Play Bill

*  Become an HTP sponsor:

Please consider making a donation to help offset the cost of this production.

I am a…

□  Patron of the Arts!!                    ($25)

□  Front Row Sponsor!!!                ($50)

□  Backstage Hero!!                        ($75)

□  Opening Night Booster!!   ($100)

Checks should be made out to “Hunt Theatre Committee”

And delivered to Ms. Virun in the Front Office.

Contact Susan at or 951-2571 with questions and thanks!

Thank you for helping make this production come to life!!

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