Jan. 21, 2010
By Tim Simard
The look of the Williston School District reconfiguration became clearer last week when the administration unveiled the new teaching teams for next school year. Nearly every team, or academic house, will experience staffing changes, according to the information released.
District Principal Walter Nardelli said administrators interviewed every teacher twice to gather input on how next year’s teams would be shaped. Teachers indicated their preferences on everything from whom they wanted to work with to which grade levels they wanted to teach.
“We tried to give every teacher something they hoped for and something they could look forward to,” Nardelli said.
Nardelli believes the new teams are more balanced in terms of teacher strengths, which will create better equity across the district.
In an e-mail sent to parents last week, Nardelli outlined what each team would look like starting next year. Students in pre-kindergarten through second grade will be housed at Allen Brook School, with three first and second grade houses.
Each house will have four teachers. Two of those houses will feature multi-age classrooms; another will have straight-grade looping, where one grade is taught for two years by the same teacher. Nardelli said this gives an option to parents who favor grade looping over multi-age classrooms, or vice versa.
The third and fourth graders at Williston Central School will have a similar house setup, with two houses featuring multi-age classrooms and another with looping classrooms.
In the upper houses of grades five through eight, there will be two two-year teams and three four-year teams. The two-year houses will be comprised of grades five and six, and grades seven and eight.
Nardelli said the middle school teams of Voyager and Full House are avoiding any major structural or personnel changes. That’s because those houses already went through a dramatic shift last school year, he said.
Nardelli said parents have expressed support for the changes, but many are withholding judgment until they see where their children will be placed. The next step for the administration will be figuring out where students will end up. Some students could follow their current teacher to a new house, or classes of students will stay together while their teacher changes.
“It depends on what the parents want,” Nardelli said.
As that work continues, teachers will look toward the 2010-2011 school year and start forging new identities as teams, Nardelli said.
Below is the breakdown of teachers and their new teams.
Allen Brook School – First & Second Grades
LOOPING MULTIAGE MULTIAGE
Julie Roger Margaret Munt Alison Schwartz
Caitlin Bianchi Erin Crowley Kim Rodliff
Becky Martell Terry Thyng David Bolger
Kate McLaughin Anthony Popoli Donna Powers
Williston Central School – Third & Fourth Grades
LOOPING MULTIAGE MULTIAGE
Dave Bouchard Susan Stewart Marybeth Morrissey
Cara Medved Karin Ward Michael Willis
Elizabeth Steele MJ Wirsing Michael Kellogg
Beth Dusablon Sarah Schoolcraft Suzy Haas
Williston Central School – Fifth – Eighth Grades
GRADES 5-6 (2 years) GRADES 7-8 (2 years)
Jared Bailey Debra McConnell
Mindy Conry Jessica Contois
Martha Quatt Deborah Taylor
Joy Peterson Dominique St. Arnaud
GRADES 5-8 (4 years) GRADES 5-8 (4 years) GRADES 5-8 (4 years)
Julie Longchamp Nick Brooks Tracey D’Amato
Amy Skapof Aron Merrill Tad Dippel
Amanda Johnson Maria Dailey Al Fletcher
Susan Mahoney Amy Durant Kathy Rossier