Dear YHS Parents,
As we finish off this week and head into Thanksgiving week, I have several items that may be of interest to you.
1. The fall musical, Urinetown: There are still a few tickets left for the remaining shows this weekend. this link. I am attending tonight, so can't vouch for the show first hand, but I have heard nothing but high praise for the show!and nights are almost sold out, but there are still plenty of tickets for the matinee. For information about tickets, please go to
2. Yarmouth Ski Swap The flyer with more information is attached at the bottom of this message. If you want to drop off items to sell, that happens this afternoon from .: The Yarmouth Ski Club, an organization dedicated solely to supporting the high school and middle school ski teams, is holding its annual Ski Swap from 9-12 at the Yarmouth Elementary School.
3. Pies for the YHS Staff: I sent an email earlier this week about Brenda Whitney's effort to have a pie for each YHS staff member as part of the staff appreciation efforts. She still needs more volunteers to make pies. Parents and students may sign up at this link (http://vols.pt/KdnD7W) called "Volunteer Spot" to help reach the goal of 70+ pies which translates into one pie for each person working at YHS to take home for their Thanksgiving. For questions about the pie project, please contact Brenda at firstname.lastname@example.org.
4. Freshman Class Sale of Yarmouth Clothing: The Class of 2018 is selling Yarmouth clothing (hooded and crew sweatshirts, open leg and closed leg sweatpants, long and short-sleeved t shirts) in blue, gray, and white, in various sizes as a fund raiser for our class and a school spirit endeavor (Go Clippers!). This is especially nice for students who may not be receiving clothing through a sports team but want to show their Clipper pride. Clothing has a CLIPPER SHIP on the front pocket area and 'YARMOUTH' on the back. Pants have 'YARMOUTH' down one leg. Orders and money are due by. Class Council members will be at tables during both lunches and you can also drop off forms and payment at the YHS main office. Goods will be delivered around the second week of December. The order form is attached at the bottom of this message.
5. Winter Concert,: The band and choral groups will be performing in the YPAC for their annual winter concert. If you have never attended one of these concerts, you are in for a treat; the musicians and singers are very talented!
6. Picture Retakes, The order form is attached at the bottom of this message as well.: For students who did not get their picture taken the first time or for those that just want to get a better picture, Lifetouch will be here for retakes on in the Flex Room. Only students who want a retake will go and should only go during lunch, break or study hall.
7. Semiformal Dance, breathalyzer tests for all students as they come into school dances. This was based on work that was done with students and teachers to create the conditions for safe and substance-free events at school. We will once again use the breathalyzer for all students as they enter the dance. Our school committee worked with us to create a policy for breathalyzer use, which you can find at this link. Students will be tested in a private area not in sight of other students coming into the dance. The type of breathalyzer that we use is one where the student does NOT have to put their mouth directly on it. Instead, the student blows into a funnel from a few inches away. The equipment is designed to determine whether there is any alcohol present in the breath. Often students ask if chewing gum can have a bearing on the test and it does not. The rest of the dance guidelines can be found at this link. Please be in touch if you have any questions.: The sophomore class will be hosting the Winter Semiformal Dance in the cafeteria. For the last three years, we instituted mandatory
8. Lions Club Tree Sale: The Yarmouth Lions Club always gives several scholarships to deserving YHS seniors in the spring. The fundraising for the scholarships comes from the Clam Festival and from the annual Tree Sale on the Yarmouth Green. Please consider supporting the Lions Club by buying your tree there, starting on. We appreciate how much they do to support our graduates.
Wow, that was a long list of items! I hope that you enjoy the Thanksgiving holiday break with your family. We do have schooland and then students have the rest of the week off.
Ted Hall, Principal
Dear YHS Parents,
Based on the last two days of low temperatures, it looks like we are headed into winter early. I have a few updates for you today about the coming two weeks.
1. Winter Sports Season Begins. Susan Robbins, our athletic director.is the first day of practice for most of our winter sports. Two exceptions are girls ice hockey who have already started and coed skiing who will start . If your son or daughter is interested in a winter sport and was unable to attend the winter sports information night, please be in touch directly with the coach or with
2. Parent-Principal CoffeeEvening. On , from in the YHS Library, I will be hosting a Parent-Principal Coffee. These are informal gatherings where we talk about any aspect of the high school experience. If you can't make this one, here is the list of the Parent-Principal Coffees for the rest of the school year:
3. Playmakers Performances of Urinetown This Week. This is the week of the performances of Urinetown, a musical comedy that deals with the shortage of water. An open dress rehearsal will take place this link. It promises to be a great show!night and regular performances will take place night, night, afternoon and night. For ticket information, go to
4. Thanksgiving Break Coming Up. We have schooland , then are off for Thanksgiving break on Wednesday, November 26 through . During Thanksgiving break, we do not collect student laptops, but ask you to follow our guidelines that the laptops should not travel out of state without prior permission. Also, we have a school policy that homework is not given over vacations, so that families can have more time together.
5. A Note About Family Vacations. Throughout the year, we have scheduled school vacations and have created a school calendar that tries very hard to meet your family's needs for travel during vacations. Please try to schedule all of your family trips during our scheduled vacations. If this is not possible, please be sure to follow our Planned Family Absence protocol.
Ted Hall, Principal
Dear YHS Parents,
I like snow as much as anyone, but November 2 is a little early for a snowstorm! You will see in my updates, however, that it was fitting given that tomorrow night (Monday) is Winter Sports Information Night. Here are a few items that may be of interest to you.
1. Congratulations to all of our sports teams this fall. The girls volleyball team won the state championship on Saturday, the girls cross country came in second in the state championship and qualified for the New England championships, and boys football and boys soccer both advanced to the next round of the playoffs. The final schedules for the next games have not been set, but will be posted on our athletic page on Monday. Girls soccer and field hockey both had terrific seasons, but finished their seasons this week in the semifinal round of the playoffs. Our golf team ended their season about two weeks ago and had a good season with a young team.
2. With fall sports winding down, it is time for the Winter Sports Information Night tomorrow (Monday, 11/3) evening at 6:00 PM. This is the time to learn about the upcoming season from the coaches as well as the parent boosters. Room assignments will be posted as you come into the building at both entrances.
3. Last Friday was the last day of the first quarter. In the next few days, grades for the quarter will be finalized and on Friday, 11/7, the grades become official. I urge you to review the grades with your son or daughter on PowerSchool over the weekend.
4. Next week, we have no school on Veterans Day, Tuesday, November 11th. The next two days are set aside for teacher-parent conferences. If your son or daughter's last name begins with A-K, your conferences will be held from 3:30-6:30 on Wednesday, November 12. Those with last names starting with L-Z have conferences on Thursday, November 13 from 3:30-6:30. These conferences are quick updates (about 5 minutes) with the teachers. Most teachers will be in either the gym or the cafeteria, with a few in their classroom. Our Student Ambassadors will be there to help you find your way.
5. Please look on our newly designed YHS homepage (http://yhs.yarmouthschools.org/) later this week for information on how to purchase tickets for the upcoming musical, Urinetown, that will be performed Wed (open dress rehearsal), Thursday evening, Friday evening, and Saturday afternoon and evening (November 19-22).
6. Casco Bay CAN (http://www.cascobaycan.org/) is a group of local individuals, schools, law enforcement agencies, organizations, and businesses who work together to prevent and reduce youth substance abuse in Cumberland, Falmouth, Freeport, North Yarmouth, Pownal and Yarmouth. I have attached two items to this email, one a letter signed by many local school administrators supporting the work of this organization and the second one is the November "Tip of the Month."
Please be in touch if you have any questions, comments or concerns. I welcome your input.
Ted Hall, Principal
Dear YHS Parents,
I have a few items for you as we start this fall weekend. First of all, good luck to all of our teams as they end their regular seasons and begin the playoffs. The next few weeks promise to be very exciting as our teams enter the post-season competitions. I also want to mention that we had a very successful visit from the Maine Supreme Court. It was very interesting to see the court in action in front of the whole school community. I attached a note I received from the chief justice that is very complimentary to the students and the school.
Here are a few things coming up in the near future.
1. Picture Day--. This is the day we do school pictures for grades 9, 10 and 11. Students received the order forms in their advisor groups this week, but just in case that form is lost, I have attached a scanned copy of the form to this email. Students need to bring in the form with a check . We do take pictures of all 9th, 10th and 11th graders that we use for their student IDs and for PowerSchool. Any senior who wants to get a new picture for the ID can come in during first break/lunch.
2. Girls Ice Hockey Information Night--. Because the girls ice hockey season starts earlier than other sports seasons, they have their information night a couple weeks before the rest of the winter sports. Girls and their parents should come to the Flex Room at to hear about the upcoming season.
3. Quarter 1 Ends on. There are just two weeks left in the first quarter grading period. If you have questions about your son or daughter's grades, I would encourage you to go over this together so that there are no surprises at the end of the quarter. One week after the grades close, the first quarter grades become official. If you have questions about any classes, be sure to be in touch with teachers.
4. Winter Sports Information Night--. Before the fall season even finishes, we begin to think about our winter sports. Please plan to come at if your son or daughter is planning to participate in a winter sport. This is the time when you can hear from the coaches about the upcoming season. Locations for each team are posted at both entrances to the school.
5. Fall Musical is coming up soon! This year's production, Urinetown, will be performed the week of this link.with an open dress rehearsal and shows evening, Friday evening, Saturday afternoon and Saturday evening. Tickets will be going on sale soon. You might be wondering what this play could possibly be about with a title like Urinetown. This is a very interesting story indeed. For information about the play, you might want to check out
I hope you have a nice weekend.
Ted Hall, Principal
Dear YHS Parents,
We have settled in well after our first month of school. Students are busy with their schoolwork as well as many clubs and activities. I have several items for you as you start your weekend.
1. Next Tuesday, October 7th, is our flu vaccine day. Many parents have already signed up their children for this free vaccine. If by chance, you forgot to sign up your child, I have attached the forms to this email. Please sign and drop off in the main office on Monday or Tuesday morning. If you have questions, please contact Margi Moran, school nurse, at email@example.com.
2. Also, on Tuesday, we have our official "Progress Report" for first quarter. Since we report all grades on PowerSchool, there is no separate progress report, but you will find when you log in on Tuesday evening that teachers will have posted comments about your child's work there. This is the link to the PowerSchool login.
3. Also on Tuesday evening, October 7th from 6:30-8:00 PM, I will be hosting the first Parent Principal Coffee in the YHS Library. I want to talk about two items in particular as well as answer any questions that parents have about any aspect of the school. First, I would like to hear your perspective on the beginning of the school year. Second, I would like to provide you with additional information as well as answer questions about our work on cornerstone assessments. In a previous email (found at this link), I wrote to you about this work if you would like to be reminded before coming to this event. I hope that you can come.
4. Next Thursday, October 9th, is a very special day at YHS. The Maine Supreme Court is going to be in our YPAC hearing three appeal cases. Every year, the court visits three high schools and we were fortunate to be one of the schools this year. The students are learning about how the court works and will be briefed on the cases. They will see the lawyers presenting their arguments and the justices asking questions. This will take place in the late morning. I wish that I could open this up to parents, but space is very tight with all of our students and teachers attending. Be sure to ask your son or daughter about the experience next Thursday evening.
5. Monday, October 13th is Columbus Day so there is no school that day.
6. For planning purposes, Wednesday, October 15th is the date that the 9th graders go on their field trip to Fort Williams and both 10th and 11th graders take the PSATs. There is NO late start that day for grades 9, 10, and 11. Seniors will have a late start that day.
Please be in touch if you have any questions, concerns or comments.
Ted Hall, Principal
September 8, 2014
Dear YHS Students and Parents,
The purpose of this letter is to give you some information about a new component of our classroom assessments, called cornerstones.
For many years, our teachers have worked collaboratively so that students who take the same course with different teachers are taught the same material and assessed using common assessments that are tied directly to the standards of the course. Since 2010, our faculty has worked together to more clearly define our school-wide expectations and learning area expectations for student learning. Recently, two outside influences have emerged that are consistent with this work: accreditation through NEASC (New England Association of Schools and Colleges) and the recent state initiative on graduation by proficiency. All of this work has pushed us to better define our academic expectations and how we assess these expectations so that all students who graduate from Yarmouth High School can be assured that they have met those expectations.
The process that has brought us to the use of cornerstone assessments began several years ago when the faculty identified our beliefs about teaching and learning. Simply stated, we believe that the best learning occurs:
The next part of the faculty’s work was to identify several overarching school-wide expectations for student learning. The idea is that these expectations will come up for students in several areas of their high school experience, mostly through their classes but also through advisor-based activities. The school-wide graduation expectations are stated as follows:
As a Yarmouth High School Student, you will:
Once we established our school-wide expectations, each of the learning areas (English, Mathematics, Social Studies, Science, World Language, Visual and Performing Arts, and Health Science) began to work on their own specific graduation expectations. These learning expectations are based on what we expect students to learn in the courses they take here. You can find the learning area expectations at this link.
Since students do almost all their learning within their classes of various subjects, we felt strongly that the assessment of these expectations should take place within the classes, so we identified the concept of cornerstone assessments as a way of knowing that students have demonstrated their understanding and application of the learning expectations.
What are cornerstones? These are assessments designed by Yarmouth High School teachers that connect directly to the learning area expectations and the school-wide expectations. Many of the cornerstones are assessments that have been previously used by teachers in their classes. Most of these existing assessments have been improved by better aligning with the expectations. In some cases, teachers have created one or more new assessments that will be their cornerstones. Every full-year course at Yarmouth High School will have between 3-5 cornerstones. Semester classes will have between 1-3 cornerstones. Students will need to pass all of the cornerstones in a course with a grade of 80 or above in order to pass the course. Students who do not reach that grade on the first try will have multiple opportunities to meet the required score. You can find three examples of cornerstones at this link.
Students have already begun to hear about cornerstones in their classes and parents will hear more from the teachers at our Open House on Thursday, September 18th. Like any change, cornerstones will become more clear when students experience these sometime later in the first quarter or early in the second quarter.
On Tuesday evening, October 7th, from 6:30-8:00 PM, all parents are invited to my first Parent-Principal Coffee in the YHS Library. Please come if you would like to learn more or have questions. And, as always, feel free to be in touch by phone or email with any questions, comments or concerns about any aspect of our school program.
Yarmouth High School
286 W. Elm Street, Yarmouth, ME 04096
Empowering all students to lead fulfilling lives in a changing world.
Main Office - (207) 846-5535 Guidance - (207) 846-3731
August 25, 2014
Dear Students and Parents,
Welcome to the 2014-2015 school year. I hope you have had an enjoyable summer and are ready to return to school. The first day of school is Tuesday, September 2nd. We will begin classes with the expectation that all students will be ready for school work and prepared for class. I am hopeful that you (students) have already completed summer reading and assignments. Just in case you haven’t quite finished, please be sure to get the work done this week so that you are prepared for the first day of school. All summer reading assignments are found listed at this link on our YHS home page (http://yhs.yarmouthschools.org/). Our school day will begin with advisor group at our usual time of 7:40 AM and finish at 2:25 PM. As has been the practice in the past, on Wednesday mornings students have a late start so that teachers can meet for professional development and planning. We will have a late start on Wednesday, September 3rd, starting at 8:40 AM.
While the students were away, there was plenty of work going on at Yarmouth High School. There have been a number of summer curriculum projects completed by teachers. Much of that summer curriculum work was focused on planning for the implementation of “Cornerstone Assessments” in all of our courses. These cornerstones will be tied directly to each of the school-wide and learning area graduation expectations. I will provide a much more detailed email with specific information about this exciting process in the first week of school. The custodial and maintenance staffs have been working to make sure that all parts of the school are “deep cleaned” and serviced so that we are ready for another year.
We are very pleased to welcome the following new staff members:
There are a few items of information on our website that I would like to highlight for you:
Please consult our website throughout the year for information about activities at the school.
Here is a reminder about the Yarmouth High School security measures:
Here is some important information for the opening of school:
I am looking forward to seeing each of you in the coming weeks. Please know that I would love to hear from you if you have questions, comments, or concerns. Feel free to call the school or send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
I am hopeful that students are excited about the coming school year. The rhythm of the school year gives each of us a chance to begin again every September and provides us with the opportunity to try new courses, activities, and habits of working.