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We Are Now Accepting ESEA Application Comments

posted Jul 20, 2017, 9:23 AM by Roz Walton

The Auburn School Department is accepting comments on the proposed 2017-2018 ESEA grant application. 

For more information about Title 1 and this grant click here

For a link to the feedback form click here

Voting Information for School Budget

posted Jun 9, 2017, 9:05 AM by Roz Walton   [ updated Jul 20, 2017, 9:19 AM ]

The School Budget Referendum date is June 13th

    At the voting location for your ward, 7:00 am-8:00 pm

    Informational flyers are in the mail today for Auburn residents.  

    Please mark your calendars and vote!

         Important Facts About This Budget:

The City Council voted to support a $41,755,455 school budget, which is a 2.48% increase over last year’s budget.

The City Manager’s proposed mill rate is $23.55. Education accounts for $9.55 of the $23.55 proposed mill rate.

 If the School Department receives additional funds from the State following the referendum vote, 100% of those
funds will be used to reduce the mil rate.

The School Committee’s proposed budget maintains current staffing and programming. It also includes additional
items that the School Committee considered most necessary.

 Below is a list of those additions:

Title I Teacher position moved to General Funds due to a decrease in federal funds

Title II Teacher position moved to General Funds due to a decrease in federal funds

.5 ELPM (credit recovery) Teacher position moved to General Funds due to decrease in federal funds

New Elementary Teacher Position

New Special Education Teacher Position

New Educational Technician III to support Behavior Interventions for students in the classroom

This budget does meet Essential Program and Service (EPS) local commitment required by law.

Other School Department Facts:

The Auburn School Department serves over 3600 students grades PreK-12 in 10 facilities!

The Auburn School Department spends $2,229 less per student than the state average.

Edward Little High School is accredited and graduates are accepted to colleges of their choice, which include: 

    University of Maine System, University of New Hampshire, University of Vermont, Bates, Colby, Northeastern 

    University, Quinnipiac University, Norwich University, Wheaton College, Syracuse University, Stonehill College, 

    Endicott College, Saint Joseph’s College, and Central Maine Community College.

One of our students was second in the state for the Boys’ and Girls’ Club student of the year!

Many of our athletic teams made it to the playoffs and our Outdoor Girls’ Track Team were KVAC champions for a second year in a row.

 84 high school students (Class of 2017) completed 287 college courses prior to graduating high school!

Our mission is “Empowering life-long learners to succeed in a world yet imagined!”

For more information regarding the Auburn School Department including more budget information, please visit www.auburnschl.edu

Voting Locations:

Ward 1 - Washburn School

            Ward 2 - Auburn Middle School

            Ward 3 - Fairview School

            Ward 4 - Auburn Hall

            Ward 5 – Sherwood Heights    

To view the sample ballot and see the flyer that is coming to you via US Mail, click on the link below:

ELHS Drama Club-Special Children's Show on Sunday, June 11th, 6:00 PM at ELHS Gym FREE

posted Jun 9, 2017, 6:58 AM by Roz Walton

The Edward Little High School drama club will be presenting a children's show, "Dorothy's Wonderland" this Sunday, June 11th at 6:00 pm in the Edward Little High School gym.  The story begins at Dorothy's house in Kansas sometime after the tornado.  Dorothy falls asleep and awakes to find herself and her dog Toto in Wonderland where she meets up with her friends from Oz as well as several characters from Wonderland.  Student written and directed by Sophia Wood and Sophie Messina, the authors have spun a great story for all ages.  

The cast includes, Maxwell Draper & Carter Shaw (narrators), Olivia DuBois (Dorothy), Jordan Reynolds (Toto), Dominique Cyr (Tin Man), David Ballard (Scarecrow), Rosa Doherty (Cowardly Lion), Jeannie Doherty (Mad Hatter), Abdi Jibril (Uncle Henry), Gabriel Sears (White Rabbit), Maureen Brann (Dormouse), Danica Hemond (Cheshire Cat), Arlo Driggs (Caterpillar), Annabelle Pendleton (Alice/Tweedle-Dee), Autumn Chapman (Aunt Em/Tweedle-Dum), Abigail Hart (Queen of Hearts).  Stage & tech crew include Katherine Gilpatrick, Zachary Gagne` dit Bellavance & Sophie Mailhot.  

Please join us for this special showing.  Free admissions, but donations will be gladly accepted!

Netflix Series - 13 Reasons Why

posted May 12, 2017, 5:49 AM by Roz Walton   [ updated May 24, 2017, 6:12 AM ]

We will be sending a letter home to parents about the Netflix series 13 Reasons Why.

Most schools will send the letter in sealed envelops addressed to parents with a follow up robocall.

The letter is attached below for your convenience or click on the following link: 

13 Reasons Why Letter from Superintendent

Why Early Release Wednesdays for Grades K-12?

posted Apr 27, 2017, 7:23 AM by Roz Walton   [ updated Apr 27, 2017, 7:26 AM ]

Voting for 2017-18 School Calendar will take place on WednesdayMay 3rd

Early Release Wednesdays for grades 7-12 proposed for the 2017-2018 School Year.

What is the proposal?

·       Thirteen Wednesdays have been identified for grades 7-12 early release. Noted on the calendar by an orange square.

·       Students will be dismissed at 11:30. K-6 will be dismissed at 12:30.

·       Students will be able to have lunch prior to dismissal.

Why is the school department proposing this change?

The Auburn School Department staff is committed to providing a high quality education for all students. The model of
education is shifting in response to the changing world around us and we must comply to state mandates.

·       To ensure all students meet certain levels of proficiency in the identified learning targets for graduation.

·       To implement best practices in teaching and learning to support all students meeting graduation requirements.

·       To teach a common curriculum and grade in a consistent way PreK-12.

·       To raise the rigor of instruction.

Our 7-12 staff is being asked to do the same work as the elementary staff and needs the timafforded to the elementary staff.
The district does recognize the impact of time on moving ou
Vision 2020 forward and meeting state mandates.

How will the time be used?

·       Staff will have set agendas for tasks that need to be completed related to the work noted above.

How will the loss of instructional time be recovered?

·       Reduce mentor and advocacy block time

            ·       Review all instructional schedules to maximize instructional time throughout the week

           ·       AMS - Core Instruction will be the focus on early release Wednesdays

           ·       ELHS - 45-50 minute classes instead of 80 minutes on early release Wednesdays

           ·       Shortened time between classes at the high school

           ·       No recess time at AMS on early release days

The School Committee will be voting on the proposed calendar Wednesday, May 3, 2017 
during their regula
School Committee meeting at 7:00pm.  

The School Committee wants to hear from you about this proposal. You are welcome to attend
the School Committee meeting on Wednesday, May 3, 2017 to share your views. You may also
send an email to School Committee member:  

            Ward 1:                    Heidi Lachapelle         hlachapelle@auburnschl.edu

            Ward 2:                    Bonnie Hayes             bhayes@auburnschl.edu

            Ward 3:                    Thomas Kendall         tkendall@auburnschl.edu

            Ward 4:                    Tammy Neilson          tneilson@auburnschl.edu

            Ward 5:                    Daniel Poisson           dpoisson@auburnschl.edu

            At Large:                  Brent Bilodeau            bbilodeau@auburnschl.edu

            At Large:                  Faith Fontaine             ffontaine@auburnschl.edu

            Mayor's Rep.:          James Pross                jpross@auburnschl.edu

 See attached proposed calendar

The Department of Education approved our plan to make up snow days!

posted Mar 17, 2017, 12:30 PM by Roz Walton

We have received word from the Department of Education that our plan to add one hour of instructional time to Wednesdays starting March 29 through June 7 will be approved by the Commissioner. We will be receiving the confirmation letter next week.

The last student day will be on Tuesday, June 20th and the last teacher day will be on Thursday, June 22nd.

Making Up Snow Days- When is the last day of school? What's the plan?

posted Mar 16, 2017, 5:21 AM by Roz Walton

On March 15, 2017, the School Committee unanimously approved a motion to submit a request to the Commissioner of Education in the form of a waiver. This waiver, one that is listed as a recommendation in state statute, allows school districts to add one hour of instructional time to a school day. For every 5 hours of additional instructional time, school districts make up one school day.

The School Committee approved Superintendent Grondin’s request to add one hour of instructional time to every Wednesday afternoon between March 29th and June 7th. This would put two instructional days back into the school calendar, allowing both students and staff to end the school year by June 23rd. The last student day would be on Tuesday, June 20th and the last teacher day would be on Thursday, June 22nd.

The top reasons why Wednesdays were chosen are as follows:

  • *Zero impact on the Pre-K afternoon program.
  • *Zero impact on the CLC afterschool program.
  • *Students would not have an extended school day on multiple days in a week.

Some questions that the School Committee discussed before approving the submission of the waiver were the following:

  • *Is this going to impact athletic schedules?   No more than they currently are.
  • *Will this impact our aftercare program?  No. The director is willing to work with her site coordinators and adjust the Wednesday afternoon schedule.
  • *Will students have access to school lunch?  Yes, as they already do.
  • *What times will students be released from school?  
    • Elementary students would attend until 12:30pm.
    • Middle school students would attend until 3:00pm.
    • High school students would attend until 3:10pm.

One exception would be on May 31st, where middle and high school release times would stay the same, and elementary students would stay until 4:00pm, as it is not a scheduled half-day Wednesday.

Again, tonight’s decision was one that allows Supt. Grondin to submit the proposal to the State. We will then wait for the Commissioner’s decision on our plan to makeup snow days. We will certainly post more information as it becomes available to us.

Friday, March 17th will be Student Day instead of Workshop Day

posted Mar 15, 2017, 7:21 AM by Roz Walton

This Friday, March 17th will be a regular student day instead of the planned teacher workshop day 
due to the number of snow days we have experienced this winter. 

We understand this decision may be in conflict with prior family arrangements. If your child is not able to attend, 
please contact your child's school to let them know, so the absence will be considered excused. 

We appreciate your understanding.   Thank you.

Katy Grondin, Superintendent of Schools.

Snow is coming...AGAIN! How do we determine if school is canceled or delay?

posted Mar 13, 2017, 12:32 PM by Roz Walton

Snow days! It has been a winter season of snow day decisions! As I was visiting a classroom before vacation, the teacher asked me if I would mind explaining to the students how a snow day decision was made. After my explanation, a student said, “It isn’t as easy as it seems!” The teacher shared later that she was glad to hear how the decisions are made and thought others would like to hear it too so it is being posted on our website to share with citizens.

Here is the process for how the decision is made…

1.     I set my alarm for 4:30am, so I am able to check the National Weather Service for the latest hour-to-hour forecast before Russ Murley, the weatherman, calls at 4:45am.

2.     Following Mr. Murley’s information, I call our Support Services Director, who has checked in with Public Works, to hear about the latest road conditions and building maintenance.

3.     While these conversations are happening, three Superintendents in the area are texting, asking for opinions and weighing in on possibilities as to what the call may need to be.

4.      Finally, the Lewiston Superintendent and I discuss all the information we’ve received to make what we believe is the best decision for both Lewiston and Auburn!

Then, the knots in my stomach begin, especially if schools stay open or delay. Mother Nature is not predictable! What weighs heavily on my mind is that all of the students and staff make it safely to school or make it home at the end of the day safely! Sometimes people forget that the tough decisions are made by people with feelings and emotions. Making a snow day decision is one of the hardest decisions I make in my position. It is not as easy as it may seem!  I’m grateful to have other people involved in that decision making process and sharing in gathering the necessary information to determine whether to close schools, delay opening, or keep schools open.

I know many of you have weighed in on what to do to make up snow days instead of going to school so late in the month of June. On our published school calendar there are 5 snow days noted and we are currently at 7 snow days with predictions of more snow coming! It is important to note that we are committed to providing 175 days of high quality education regardless of when those days take place. Below is a response I sent to a parent who asked if I had considered going to school during Feb-April vacations or Saturdays:

“The challenges to make up the school days during Feb and April vacation and/or Saturdays are the same for the end of the year. Families and staff have vacations or scheduled weekend plans. The quality of instruction due to attendance and staff may not be the same. Also, we are part of a regional calendar, so there would need to be discussions across districts, if days were to be made up at other times other than at the end of the year.”

This has been an unusual year! We have not gone beyond 5 snow days in over five years! Just as the snow day decision is not easy, the decision to make up the snow days other than in June is not as easy as it seems either!  We will keep you posted on this site if any changes are made regarding making up these days

Please feel free to share comments and/or questions with me through email at superintendent@auburnschl.edu using Snow Days as your subject line (so it doesn’t end up in the spam folder).

Thank you!

Katherine Grondin, Superintendent

Book Signing at ELHS-Meet the author of the Edward Little Biography!

posted Mar 2, 2017, 9:16 AM by Roz Walton   [ updated Mar 2, 2017, 9:18 AM ]


On Friday, March 17th from 12:30 – 2:30, local author and historian, Douglas Hodgkin, will hold a book signing in the library at Edward Little High School for his new book, "Dear Parent: A Biography and Letters of Edward Little".

Hodgkin, President of the Androscoggin Historical Society, began working on his book in 2015. He will be available to sign copies of the book as well as answer questions about Edward Little. The book can be purchased at the signing for $20.00, plus tax.

Edward Little was the founder of Lewiston Falls Academy, a private school, in the 1830s. He gave a plot of land and money for the construction of the first building. For several years, it was the only secondary school in the area. Some of the land is still notable as the park on the corner of Academy and Main Streets in Auburn.

In 1866, the school was renamed Edward Little Institute in the founder’s honor. When the City of Auburn desired to establish a public school, the academy trustees transferred the property on several conditions, including that it be named Edward Little High School.

“We are pleased to provide the opportunity for people to obtain the book,” according to the current librarian of the high school, Heidi McCurdy. “It is most appropriate that we may learn more about the man whose name graces our school.”

The current high school is located at 77 Harris Street in Auburn. For more information call 333-6652.

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