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eNews Week of Dec 9, 2019

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Administrators’ Message

CFES Brilliant Pathways is a nonprofit organization committed to helping youth get to and through college, as well as be ready to enter the workforce. Launched in Cornwall, Vermont in 1991, CFES grew out of a study supported by the National Association for College Admission Counseling, which identified practices that raised aspirations and increased educational opportunities for students through school-college partnerships. Since then, CFES has helped prepare over 100,000 students nationwide to succeed in the 21st century workforce.

The essence of CFES is the engagement of each CFES Scholar in three high-impact practices that enable them to take steps toward college & career readiness. The three core practices are: Mentoring, Pathways to College & Career, and Essential Skills. Over the last five years, 96 percent of CFES high school seniors have gone on to a two- or four-year college or a training program leading to a career in the trades, military or a career requiring a certificate of value.

The partnership between CFES and Vergennes Union High School is intended to help us continue to build and strengthen a culture that gives students the knowledge and skills needed to succeed in whatever postsecondary path they choose to pursue. All CFES Scholars participate in activities designed to expose them and their families to college and careers, assist them with the admissions and financial aid process, prepare them for success in college, and expose them to and prepare them for the 21st century workforce. CFES Scholars will spend time on college campuses, engage in discussions with college students and faculty (in person or online), and position themselves for college and career success. While a smaller group of students from each grade level (7-11) will be identified as CFES Scholars, there will be opportunities and events for our entire student body to further increase postsecondary success.

The school counseling office will be in touch with parents/guardians as we begin introducing this opportunity to students over the next several weeks. You can learn more about CFES Brilliant Pathways at their website You can read a press release about the program that was in local papers earlier this fall. This document contains more specifics about the program as well. This partnership is being funded by a generous donation from a VUHS graduate.

Please let us know if you have any questions.

We also hope you can join us Tuesday evening for...

Proficiency Based Learning -- Continuing the Conversation, December 10th, 6:00-8:00pm, VUHS Library

An evening of continuing the conversation on proficiency-based learning with Vermont Principals' Association Assistant Executive Director, Mike McRaith. Mike will discuss proficiency-based learning practices, including personalization, proficiency-based reporting and state-wide trends. Parents, students, educators and community members are welcome!

  • Participants will have improved knowledge of statewide proficiency-based learning progress, better understand the importance for shifts in teaching & assessment practices, and learn more about post-secondary institutions reaction to proficiency-based learning.

Have a great week.

Stephanie, Ed, and Jay


School Calendar Reminders

December ANWSD Board/Committee Meeting Schedule

December 10 - Proficiency-Based Learning Conversation - 6-8 pm - VUHS Library

December 23 - January 1 - Winter Break - School Resumes Thursday, January 2nd

January 11 - High School Mid-Winter Ball

January 17 - End of Semester 1

January 20 - Martin Luther King, Jr. Day - No School

January 21 - No School for Students - Faculty/Staff Inservice


Addison Independent Student of the Week

Every other week a well-deserving VUHS senior is selected as an Addison Independent Student of the Week. These students are actively involved in the community and working hard to make the most of their education. Be sure to check out the Monday, December 2nd edition of the paper to learn more about our latest outstanding senior, Emily Rooney. Congratulations Emily!


New England Youth Rowing Championships

Experienced Six Oar Division

Nathan DeVos, Zeke Clark, Aidan Gardner, Jackson Hameline, Mike Davis, Robert Verburg and Mitch Clark closed out their high school rowing careers with an impressive second place finish.

Novice Six Oar Division

Sam Michaels, Una Fonte, Kaitlyn Little, Jasmine Little, Clarinda McAllister, Audrey Tembreull and Stella Armstrong - Third

Stephen Barcomb, Jackson Coffey, Caden Howell, Jackson Bennett, Carter Brown, Owen Fonte, Brett Brisson and Louis Provencher - Sixth

Intermediate Four Oar Division

Addie Brooks, Olivia Brooks, Dakota Loven, Ryan Baringer and Jonathan Forgues (a team who hadn’t rowed together previously) - Second

Novice Four Oar Division

Ethan Payne-Vinick, Eyon Tembreull, Mike Preston, Jacob Kehoe, Evan Ambrose - First

Megan Mentzer, Zoe St. John, Julian Andrus, and Matilda Seyler - Second

Novice Six Oar Division

Samantha Colvin, Spencer Adams, Jackson Becher, Brody McGuire, Hayden Bassett, Noah Letendre, and Zach Norris - First

Congratulations to all VUHS rowers on a great season!


VUHS Soccer Players Honored

VT Twin State Selection - Emily Rooney (She will represent VT this summer vs. NH)

Lake Division 1st Team - Sophie Hatch, Emily Rooney, Sydney Weber

Lake Division 2nd Team - Kate Gosliga, Hannah Kelly

Lake Division Honorable Mention - Ema Gernander, Lauren Curtis

Lake Division Offensive Player of the Year - Emily Rooney

Lake Division Goalie of the Year - Kate Gosliga

Lake Division Coach of the Year - Dwight Irish

VT Division 3 All-State Team - Sophie Hatch, Sydney Weber, Emily Rooney

VT All-New England Nominee - Emily Rooney

Nice work, girls! Congratulations to all our soccer players on a great season!


VUHS Holiday Food Drive

Please help feed our neighbors this holiday season. Some food will go directly to VUHS families and the rest will be donated to the Vergennes Food Shelf. Our goal is to fill up the blue bin in the main lobby by December 18. If we do we will have a delicious snack on December 19 for all students! We are looking for non-perishable, non-expired food items specifically: canned foods, pasta, macaroni and cheese, pasta sauce, canned soup, canned vegetables, peanut butter, granola bars, healthy cereal, and healthy snacks. High school students bring items to your morning meeting room to be counted toward points for your class. Middle school students can put items directly in the bin.


Friendsgiving Event to Benefit VUES Paraeducator and Her Family

On Saturday, December 14th there will be a thanksgiving dinner (turkey with all the fixings) catered by Second Chance Farm at Vergennes Elementary School. See details here. The dinner is a fundraiser for Janet Cogger and her family. Janet is currently going through medical treatments and is not able to work full time. Janet has worked for VUES for over 25 years. She has touched many lives in this community and we want to help her as much as possible.


SAILS Holiday Donation Drive

The holiday season is upon us!  That means good food, time off from work and school, ugly sweaters, shopping, gifts, and holiday cheer...but not always for everyone.  The holidays can be a difficult time for individuals and families that are in need and struggle to make ends meet. The SAILS Community-Based Learning class wants to help those in need this year, and you can donating gifts and winter apparel to the SAILS Holiday Donation Drive.

WHAT:  We are looking for donations of unopened gifts/toys and clean/gently used winter apparel (hats, mittens, gloves, scarves, and coats...please no boots unless new).

WHEN:  The SAILS Holiday Donation Box is outside the SAILS classroom in the main hallway and will be available until FRIDAY 12/13. Donations will be brought to local donation centers the weekend of December 14.

All donations are greatly appreciated and will make a difference for someone in the community this holiday season.  Thank you VUHS and Happy Holidays!


New England Young Writers' Conference

Hey potential writers in grades 10, 11, and 12. The applications for this year's New England Young Writers' Conference are finally available! Come get one from Mr. Steen or from the school counseling office. They are due by December 19, 2019.

Please see either Mr. Steen or Mr. Schlein with any questions about the application process or conference in general. This is a conference that will literally change your life as a writer. It's an opportunity not to be missed.


Trees & Wreaths for Sale

Beginning on Saturday, December 7th, Scout Troop 539 of Vergennes will sell trees and wreaths at the lot next to the police station in Vergennes each Saturday and Sunday through December 22.  The price of the trees is $35 and the homemade wreaths are $25. The proceeds from the sales help support activities and learning opportunities for the scouts in Troop 539. Thanks for your support.


Commodore Parent/Teacher Group

This year we have exciting plans for middle school events, staff appreciation, and specialized community dialogue nights! We continue to maintain an enrichment grant budget. We're also putting the FUN back in fundraising with a really cool event in the works! Come to our meetings and help us plan, or be on the lookout for sign-ups to volunteer for upcoming events. We truly appreciate your help!

Our new email address is [email protected] and you can find us on Facebook at: 

Our meetings are generally on the 4th Monday of the month from 6:30-8:00 PM in the VUHS library, although the next one is Monday, December 16th because of the December break. If you can't commit to meetings, that's okay - please know we can always use all kinds of help, please reach out to us if you'd like to be involved!


VUHS Booster Club

The Booster Club is looking for a parent volunteer from each elementary school (Vergennes, Addison, and Ferrisburgh) to join our club as a member-at-large. We need more people to create fundraising committees and bring new ideas to our group! We meet the 2nd Tuesday of each month from 7-8 p.m. If you are interested, please contact me ([email protected]). Thanks! - Kirsten De La Cruz, Booster Club President



Writing & Speech Contests/Opportunities 2019-2020

American Legion High School Oratorical Scholarship Program (Deadline Extended to December 12th)

This is a competitive speech program (Oratorical Brochure) for students in grades 9-12.  Information and application are available in the School Counseling Office as well as here.

  • This speech contest presents participants with an academic speaking challenge that teaches important leadership qualities, the history of our nation’s laws, the ability to think and speak clearly, and an understanding of the duties, responsibilities, rights and privileges of American citizenship. See more information here. Application deadline to indicate interest is December 12th. Initial speech competitions are in January 2020. If you need help getting started, contact Jay ([email protected]).

  • See a Facebook video here of Caroline Mackenzie Freeman, a 2012 national competitor, explaining the contest (and why she wrote a guide for students). The book can be purchased from this site

Sen. Sanders State of the Union Essay Contest

Senator Sanders has launched his tenth annual State of the Union Essay Contest. This is an opportunity for Vermont high school students to describe what they think are the most pressing issues facing the United States and what they would do to solve them. Students submit 250-500 word essays on an issue they would prioritize if they were president. A panel of Vermont teachers will judge the essays based on students' ability to describe the issue and proposed solution. Senator Sanders will enter the top ten finalists' essays in the Congressional Record - the official archive of the United States Senate and House of Representatives. Additionally, in celebration of the tenth year of the contest, Sen. Sanders will invite the finalists to record videos about their essays to be posted on his official social media accounts. Learn more and submit essays online. Deadline January 8, 2020.

See other opportunities that have been in previous editions of the e-News here.


2019-2020 Yearbooks

Order through the following links.

High School

Middle School



Want to learn more about VUHS?

Don’t forget that you can also check out the new school website! There are lots of great resources and contact information for families and students.