January 5, 2010

Dear Friends of Gateway:

Here is this week’s installment of Gateway’s weekly e-newsletter. Back issues of Breaking News and past Superintendent’s Corners are posted on the News Archive (under “general information” on the district website). As always, your feedback and suggestions are welcome  

QUOTE OF THE WEEK:  The object of a new year is not that we should have a new year. It is that we should have a new soul.” – G. K. Chesterton


COMING EVENTS: A schedule of activities for the week ending January 16, 2009 i s now posted.  (Items for this calendar should be submitted at least two weeks ahead of time!)

UPCOMING MEETINGS: The Gateway Regional School Committee will meet on Wednesday, January 13 at 7:30 p.m. in the Gateway Performing Arts Center. The Elementary School Consolidation decision is scheduled to be considered. The Friends of Gateway have changed their standard meeting time to the SECOND Tuesday of each month, at 6:30 p.m. in the Superintendent’s Office. The Friends of Gateway will next meet on Tuesday, January 12 at 6:30 p.m. in the Superintendent’s Office. New members are sought and are welcome to join this group, whose goals include improving communications, parent involvement, and volunteerism in support of student achievement. The public is invited and encouraged to attend all meetings.


THREE GATEWAY STUDENTS MAKE JR. DISTRICT CONCERT BAND: Sydney Thompson, Kristine Vorwerk and Tyler Kornacki all earned spots in the Western Massachusetts band, the result of auditions held last month.

(left to right: Sydney Thompson, Tyler Kornacki and Kristine Vorwerk)

JANUARY SCHOOL COMMITTEE MEETINGS: The school committee will meet on the first and third Wednesdays in January and will determine the future of elementary education at their January 13 meeting.

H1N1 FLU CLINIC REMINDER: The Gateway Regional School District is hosting an H1N1 (“Swine Flu”) Vaccination Clinic for all residents of the Gateway hilltowns. The clinic will be held TODAY from 4 – 7 p.m. Please enter by the Superintendent’s Office. Parents of children age 9 and under who have not yet had their second dose, may attend as well. Parents must be present with younger children, and must sign consent for any middle school and high school students who attend. This clinic is for all age groups (age 6 months and older) and is open to the public, free of charge.

REINDEER GAMES: Gateway public relations intern Kelly McCarthy offers her view (with photos) of the high school’s annual “Reindeer Games”, held the afternoon before the holiday vacation began.

JANUARY SCHOOL COMMITTEE MEETINGS: Parents of students living in the Gateway Regional School District are advised that applications are now available for students interested in applying to vocational school. Those applications must be submitted by March 1, 2010.

UPCOMING SCHOOL COUNCIL MEETINGS: Principal Kathleen McSweeney has announced the dates for this month’s School Council meetings for the high school and junior high school.


WEBSITE OF THE WEEK: Dedicated to helping Gateway parents raise strong, safe, healthy and high-achieving kids!

FLU INCIDENCE ON THE RISE: According to the Centers for Disease Control website, the incidence of influenza-like illness (ILI) rose slightly last week, following 8 consecutive weeks of declining rates, and rates of deaths due to pneumonia and influenza returned to epidemic levels. So far, nearly all laboratory-confirmed cases of influenza are H1N1. The Massachusetts Department of Public Health has cautioned that the flu season is still underway, and another wave of H1N1 (Swine Flu) is possible. Widespread influenza is currently reported in a number of northeastern states, including Maine and New Jersey.


  • H1N1 (“SWINE FLU”) VACCINATION CLINIC AT GATEWAY: A free, H1N1 vaccination clinic will be held at Gateway Regional High School on Tuesday, January 5 from 4 – 7 p.m. All area residents over the age of 6 months are eligible to receive the vaccine. Please enter the building by the Superintendent’s Office.
  • MID-YEAR BUS CHANGE ANNOUNCED: Due to a decrease in the number of Grade 5 – 12 students served by some bus routes, the Gateway district is reducing the total number of buses being used. Effective January 4, 2010, some students will be reassigned to new buses and bus stop times. Those families were sent a letter late last week. Click here for the addresses effected.
  • FAFSA HELP NIGHT: The Gateway Regional High School Guidance Department is sponsoring a “FAFSA Help” night for seniors and their parents/guardians.
  • LITTLEVILLE LITTLE CAESARS PIZZA FUNDRAISER: The Littleville PTO is holding a Little Caesar’s Pizza Fundraiser in time for the Superbowl. Information went home in Red Folders on December 18. Prizes will be awarded to top selling classes, the top two individual sellers, and to every student who participates. All orders and money should be turned into the school by January 18.
  • 2010 YEARBOOKS ON SALE NOW; SR. PARENTS INVITED TO PURCHASE PHOTO AD: The 2010 Portal—Gateway High School’s annual yearbook—is now on sale. Those wishing to purchase a copy, please complete this form and return it with payment to Mrs. Marilyn Durken, c/o the high school. Orders received by December 31 will be charged $50; afterwards, the price increases to $55.  ALSO, parents of graduating seniors may participate in the tradition of a family ad in this year’s Portal. There’s still time to get your ad in: click this flyer for details.
  • R. H. CONWELL LITTLE CAESARS PIZZA FUNDRAISER: Orders will be delivered in time for Super Bowl Weekend! Orders and money are due Friday, January 16. Delivery will be Wednesday, January 27, with pickup between 4:30 and 5.
  • CONWELL COOKBOOK PLANNED: The R. H. Conwell PTO is seeking best recipes for a cookbook fundraiser. Please email your favorite recipes to zeus405@aol.com or drop them off at the R. H. Conwell office before February 1, 2010.
  • SAVE THE DATE FOR ANNUAL SPORTS BANQUET: Students and parents who participate in Gateway Jr./Sr. High School athletic programs: the Gateway Athletic Booster Club has announced the date of the Annual Sports Banquet. This year, the banquet will be held at Tekoa Country Club in Westfield on June 2. Ticket information will be coming later in the school year. Please save the date for this special event!
  • APPLICATION FOR FREE AND REDUCED LUNCH: The application form is posted to our website. If you need assistance, please contact John Bergeron or Diane Meehan at 667-2203, who would be happy to help.
  • DISTRICT CALENDAR FOR THE SCHOOL YEAR: The district calendar for the coming school year is posted on-line, and contains Open House Dates, parent conferences, holidays, vacations, graduation and student early-release days.
  • WEBSITE ON THE FUTURE OF GATEWAY ELEMENTARY SCHOOLS: Parents of students in Gateway elementary schools have a new resource for information as the district grapples with tough economic decisions and the possible closure of some schools. Click here for the website.


The Superintendent's Corner for the past two weeks are now posted.  The December 28, 2009 column reports on the official response from the Massachusetts School Building Authority (MSBA) regarding the costs of closing elementary schools. The January 4, 2010 column offers the Superintendent’s recommendation to the school committee on the issue. Read the full columns for details!

Have a wonderful week!

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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 wlong@grsd.org

© 2010, Gateway Regional School District