Breaking News

March 24, 2015
Dear Friends of Gateway:

Here is your new issue of Breaking News -- the e-newsletter of the Gateway Regional School District. We are always looking for feedback and ideas to improve the newsletter, so please feel free to contact us!

QUOTE OF THE WEEK: "The question isn't who is going to let me; it's who is going to stop me." - Ayn Rand (on a poster in the Gateway Welding Shop)

SCHOOL COMMITTEE:  The Gateway Regional School Committee will meet on Wednesday, March 25 at 7:30 p.m. This meeting will be held in rooms 214/216 (the second floor double classroom) in the junior high school. Agenda items include updates from Chester ES, Littleville ES and the Middle School and the Worthington Withdrawal Separation Agreement. The first agenda item of every school committee meeting is hearing issues that are not on the posted agenda. (Please note that any questions or concerns should first be brought to the appropriate district staff member, i.e. a specific teacher, principal or Central Office staff member). 

THE COMING WEEK AT GATEWAY: PARCC testing continues for students in grades 3-8 this week; the School Committee meets on Wednesday, March 25 at 7:30 p.m.; an Early College Planning workshop will be held for students in grades 9-11 and their parents/guardians on Thursday, 3/26 from 6-7 p.m. in the Gateway Performing Arts Center; the Middle School holds its annual "Hoops for Heart" on Friday, March 27; the GRHS Concert Band competes in the MICCA festival at Belchertown High School on Saturday, March 28; and students in grades 8, 10 and 12 will take the Prevention Needs Assessment survey on Monday, March 30.

ALL-GIRL WELDING TEAM AT GATEWAYIn what just might be history-making, Gateway welding teacher Paul Atkinson has entered an all-female welding team for this year's Top Notch Welding Bend Off Competition.

Photo (left to right): Alyssa Donaruma, Taylor Sterling, Haley Kelly-Sherette and Michala Torres--welding students forming Gateway's first all-female competitive team.
 Photo of welding team

EDUCATION FOUNDATION FUNDS 7 NEW CLASSROOM PROJECTSThe Board announced this week that it has granted funding to 7 new classroom projects totaling $2,631 through its Funds For Learning program. To date, the Foundation has provided $19,081 for 26 classroom, school and district projects. Funding has also been raised for improvements to the Gateway Performing Arts Center through the Rob Shipman Memorial Fund.

GATEWAY BAND COMPETES AT MICCA ON MARCH 28The Concert Band will perform and compete at 2 p.m. on Saturday, March 28 at Belchertown High School and the public is welcome to come and cheer them on. (Admission will be charged--please read the complete article).

This free, developmental screening for young children will be held by appointment only, and will take approximately one hour. Parents of children aged 3 (by April 28) to 5 (but not entering Kindergarten in September) may contact Karen Malinowski (685-1017 or to schedule. Screenings are required for preschool role models.

COLLEGE PLANNING SEMINARS FOR JUNIORSThe college planning process for juniors at Gateway Regional High School kicks off with a College Planning Night on Thursday, March 26 from 6-7 p.m.

ASVAB OFFERED AT HIGH SCHOOLThe Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery (ASVAB) Career Exploration Program will be offered to interested juniors and seniors on Wednesday, April 8. While this test is required to enter many military careers, it has been re-designed so that all students--regardless of their plans after high school--can identify their interests, skills and work-related values, and more. Students must sign up by April 3.

LITTLEVILLE PARENT REMINDER: Please note that from 8:30 - 8:50 a.m., and 3:10 - 3:30 p.m., the parking lot in front of Littleville, and the circle between Littleville and the high school complex, are reserved for buses. If you are dropping off or picking up children before or after school, remember to park in front of the high school and walk over. Thank you!

FINE FOR PASSING SCHOOL BUSES: Just a reminder that there is a fine associated with passing a school bus that has its red lights flashing. Thank you for helping keep our students and staff safe!

ADULT EDUCATION UPDATE: The Southern Hilltowns Adult Education Center continues its busy calendar through March! GED/HiSet classes focusing on Social Studies and History wrap up Thursday, 3/26 and the class on History and Civics ends March 30. The focus shifts to science beginning April 6. Also, an Introduction to Excel workshop will be offered on March 25 from 1 - 2:30 p.m. at Middlefield Town Hall.  Click for the March Calendar and March Course ListClasses are free of charge to hilltown residents. Please register by calling 685-1052 or emailing 


COLLEGE AND CAREER PLANNING WEBSITE: Try the College Board website for helpful tools on college and career planning. The student section of the website offers a wealth of information on Advanced Placement exams, the SAT and PSAT (including practice tests), and a "Big Future" section for exploring careers, colleges and majors; college application advice and guidance on getting help paying for college. Students can register for free and keep track of their search outcomes.

  • ANNUAL 'CABARET' IS APRIL 2This popular, annual showcase of the Gateway High School Show Choir and Jazz Band will feature entertaining performances, a bake sale and a pasta sale. Curtain rises at 7 p.m.; tickets (at the door) are $4 for adults, $2 for students and senior citizens.
  • CHESTER PTO NEWSThis article includes details on the Yankee Candle Fundraiser currently underway, the family movie night scheduled for March 27, and the Annual Spaghetti Dinner and Raffle on May 15.
  • GATEWAY KINDERGARTEN SCREENINGAny child living in the six Gateway hilltowns that will be part of the 2015-16 school year (Blandford, Chester, Huntington, Middlefield, Montgomery and Russell) who will be age 5 on or before September 1, 2015, is asked to schedule a Kindergarten Screening with their elementary school.
  • LITTLEVILLE PLAYGROUND CONDITIONS: Littleville parents/guardians are reminded that the playground still have lots of snow (and melting snow). Still, its important for students to go outside and get some exercise and fresh air. Please help by sending in extra clothes, undergarments and shoes for children to change into if they get wet at recess. Thank you!
  • GATEWAY SENIORS REMINDED OF SCHOLARSHIP DEADLINES: While a few have deadlines have already passed, most of the local and regional scholarships for Gateway seniors are due between March 31 and May 1. A booklet of available scholarships has already been distributed to seniors, but extra copies are still available in the Guidance Office. These scholarships can go a long way in defraying the cost of your freshman year of college!
  • VIEW AND VOTE FOR GATEWAYThe Jr. High School Show Choir taped a segment at WGBY (Channel 57, Springfield) to compete in this year's "Together in Song" A Celebration of Choral Music in Western New England". Gateway's performance is scheduled to air at 8:30 p.m. on March 21 on WGBY. After that, their performance may be viewed on the Together in Song website, where viewers and fans will be able to vote online to help determine the finalists for a live taping and awards show on April 26.
  • COLLEGE PLANNING NIGHT WORKSHOP FOR GRADE 9-11 STUDENTS AND FAMILIESThe Guidance Department invites all to the workshop on Thursday, March 26 from 6-7 p.m. in the Gateway Performing Arts Center.
  • PNA SURVEY AT GATEWAY MARCH 30Gateway students in grades 8, 10 and 12 will take part in the Prevention Needs Assessment Survey on March 30. This survey is conducted every two years in schools throughout Hampshire County and is entirely anonymous. A copy of the survey is available in the high school office for anyone wishing to view it.
  • WORTHINGTON WITHDRAWAL BLOG ON GATEWAY WEBSITEA new blog on the Worthington Withdrawal has been added to the Gateway website and is linked from its home page. Parents, students, staff and community members are invited to view the blog posts and share their comments.
  • VHS TO DVD-R CONVERSIONThe Gateway News Network (GNN) is once again holding a fundraiser for new equipment by converting home videos and educational videos from VHS to DVD.
  • QUICKLINK TO THE HIGH SCHOOL SPORTS SCHEDULEThe Gateway sports schedule is posted on the high school website this year, in the "Athletics" drop-down menu.
  • DOMESTIC VIOLENCE SERVICES AVAILABLE IN THE HILLTOWNS: Hilltown Safety at Home (HS@H) provides a part-time domestic violence Advocate to hilltown residents who call 413-559-8039. If you need help in an emergency, call 911 or the Safe Passage hotline at 1-888-345-5282.
  • GATEWAY SCHOOL SAFETY HOTLINE:  Students, parents, staff and community members are reminded that any school safety concern can be reported to our hotline by calling 685-1050.
  • GATEWAY SAFE SCHOOLS PLAN: In the event of an emergency at your child's school, please do not call or drive to your child's school. We need to keep phone lines and roadways clear in an emergency. Please remain by your phone and wait for information and instructions from school staff, which will be sent using our auto-dialer.Parents are advised to keep school secretaries up-to-date with their contact information.

IN CLOSING, this week's Superintendent's Corner is now posted. This week, Dr. Hopson reports on the School Committee's adoption of a nearly level service budget last week, and explains the importance of mitigation funding from the state in making this more affordable to the towns. Please read the complete column for details.

                                                                                         Wendy V. Long, Editor


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“Breaking News From Gateway”
Is published weekly by the Gateway Regional School District
12 Littleville Rd.
Huntington, MA  01050

For questions or feedback, please contact Wendy Long @ (413) 685-1003 or email

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