Monthly Archives: January 2013

January 2013



10      Theater, Dance & Film Showcase (6 pm & 8 pm, Riley Center)
14      End of Marking Period
15-17 Final Exams (Early Dismissal – 12:35 pm)
18      Faculty In-Service – No School
18      Semi-Formal Winter Ball  (8:00 pm, BBA Cafeteria)
21      Martin Luther King Day – No School
22      Faculty In-Service – No School
23      Second Semester Begins – Special Schedule
26-27 Theater Arts Symposium (Riley Center)


From the Headmaster

Dear Families:

With the arrival of the new year comes an opportunity both to reflect on the past and look to the future.

2012 was a terrific year for Burr and Burton.  We grew–literally–by adding the town of Dover to our constellation, launched the remarkable Mountain Campus program, looked intensively at our programs as part of our 10-year reaccreditation process (more on this in a moment), and we continue to commit ourselves to a mission of responsibility, integrity and service.  We won state championships, sent students to a superb range of colleges and universities, participated in statewide art and music performances, saw student groups travel overseas, lent our hands to disaster recovery efforts, and forged all-important bonds between teachers and students.  We welcomed a new freshman class as well as numerous newcomers into the upper grades, and we brought a cadre of new teachers into the fold.

The 10-year reaccreditation, through the New England Association of Schools and Colleges, is worth a bit of explanation.  For almost a year, we conducted a self-study, and then in November we hosted a team of ten educators for three days to see whether our reflections matched with their perspective.  I am happy to say that we passed our accreditation with flying colors, and #1 on their list of commendations was the following:

The Visiting Committee commends Burr and Burton Academy for the palpable sense of community spirit and pride expressed by all constituencies and the clear emphasis placed on the primacy of rapport and close relationships throughout the school community.

To me, this is the ultimate compliment to us all, and it reflects a mutual commitment between this school and the communities we serve.

On to the future, knowing that our school’s accomplishments and successes are only as good as the experience of our individual students, I share with you the following hopes for 2013:

  • I hope that our most motivated and industrious students continue to achieve and inspire, lead, and be involved throughout the school.
  • I hope our less motivated students find a productive passion, a key relationship, and a reason for excitement in their education in their remaining time at BBA.
  • I hope you as parents find Burr and Burton to be a place worthy of your trust and support.
  • I hope our teachers have a powerful impact on their students, and I hope our students have a powerful impact on us as a school and a community.
  • I hope each student finds many individual successes, always recognizing that success and failure are partners, not opposites.
  • I hope we all live up to at least one of our New Year’s resolutions.
  • I hope we have a safe and healthy year, something that we often take for granted but should not.
  • I hope that our students recognize that most true hopes and dreams are within their grasp – but they often take determination to achieve.

And I hope that our greatest strength as a school continues to be the primacy of relationships, school pride, and widespread recognition of the importance of community.  We are all in this together.

Happy New Year.

Mark H. Tashjian


mc groupBy all accounts, the fall semester at the Mountain Campus has been a huge success. Students ended their term with in-depth research and work projects designed and implemented entirely by themselves. Since our assessment tool is modeled on the skills and understandings needed to be effective agents of positive change, these projects were the perfect final exam. Students presented their work first to each other, then at a formal evening event for parents, friends, and professional advisors to the projects. High stakes, real work, and with tangible results – those were required criteria for the work and the results were impressive. Equally impressive, however was the strength of the relationships and commitment to our community that was on display that evening and in the final weeks of the semester. This group of students truly embraced and answered our central question: “What does it mean to live well in this place?” I’m proud to send this group of Pioneers back to BBA and their home communities – they know themselves well, understand what it means to work hard, and are ready to make a positive difference in their own way. Our next semester starts up January 23rd with our Winter Pioneers, a highly motivated group of students ready to tackle a new winter curriculum and wade into the winter wonderland in Peru!

Onward and Forward!

Ben Freeman
Mountain Campus Director


From the Parent Association

The Burr and Burton Parent Association endeavors to foster partnership between families, school, and the community through communication, education, social and fundraising activities and advocacy.

We hope you are well rested from the break because January begins the year with a frantic pace!  It starts off with a theater, dance & film showcase on the 10th. It is the end of the marking period on the 14th and then final exams are on the 15-17th. The 18th, which is a Friday, is a faculty in service day so the kids have the day off! Also on the 21st as it is  Martin Luther King Day and on the 22nd as it is another faculty in service day. The second semester begins on the 23rd. The Theater Arts Symposium will be on the 26th & 27th. Phew, that’s a busy month!

Last year, 29 percent of Burr and Burton Academy parents contributed to the annual campaign, for a total of approximately $89,000. While dollar amounts matter, participation matters much more. Our goal this year is simple – to increase that giving rate to 50 percent or more.

This year we’re going to have a bit of fun as we work toward that goal of 50% participation: a competition between the classes. We’ll be tracking parent participation rates by grade level. When the campaign competition concludes in March, the class with the highest rate of parent giving will win a party….and prizes! More details on that to come soon.

We’re looking for parent leaders to serve as captains for each class to coordinate outreach. If you’d like to sign up or learn more about being a captain, please let us know.

See you in February!

Peggy Brockett
Parent Association President



Everyday, faculty, staff and students at Burr and Burton help make our community a better place. Whether it be a student holding open a door, helping clean-up after an event, or a teacher who goes out of his way to make the day spectacular for a student – the monthly RISE award is here to recognize that person. Everyone has the opportunity to vote on who you feel best embodies our school’s mission of responsibility, integrity and service and make sure their actions are recognized, appreciated and may serve as an example for others.

  • A student may be nominated here.
  • A faculty/staff member may be nominated here.

Last month BBA ceramics teacher Lauren Silver was the first faculty recipient chosen and recognized as “a woman who has been called one of the nicest people on campus, how can you not love her. Her classroom is a warm and inviting place.  She lives our mission.”

Henry Lin was chosen as the inaugural student winner – a young man that is described as “energetic, fun to be around, caring, and someone that makes everyone feel good about themselves. He recently cooked a meal for the entire BBA international community. He does the little things that make our community a better place.”


From the Advancement Office

We hope everyone had a super holiday break enjoying the winter weather that has finally arrived!

We want to thank all of our BBA parents who made a gift to the Annual Fund at the end of the year.  We appreciate your response to the class challenge and we will be sharing an update with you shortly on parent participation by class.  Since January is a cold, dark month where we all face holiday bills and other obligations, we will not be pushing for your financial support of the annual fund right now.

We are gearing up for the planning of this year’s fundraising gala, An Evening under the Stars, on May 24, 2013.  So be sure that date is on your calendar.  In conjunction with this event, we will once again be holding an Online Auction in April.  We are looking for items for the auction, and in particular, donation of services.  If you own a business and would like to donate something we are looking for things like:  a cord of wood (delivered), a morning of spring cleaning, a couple of hours of window washing, decorating consultation, landscaping consultation, gift certificates to local restaurants – anything along these lines.  If you have something in mind, please contact Christine Hoard at or call her at 802-549-8277.  And the good news is if you donate something to the auction that will count toward parent participation in the annual fund!

Best wishes to all of our Burr and Burton families for a happy, healthy and prosperous 2013!

Cynthia Gubb
Director of Advancement


College and Career Information

Second Semester Schedules

All students will receive a copy of their second semester schedule on January 8th.  Students who need to make changes should see their counselor by January 17th.  No changes will be made on the first day of classes and there will be limited opportunity to switch classes at a later time.

Visit the Career Development Center

Students interested in finding out more about what the CDC has to offer should see their School Counselor to participate in a visit scheduled for January 8th.

College and Career Planning for Juniors

The School & College Counselors will meet with all juniors in individual student appointments to be scheduled in February and March.  We will discuss the student’s academic record, extracurricular and work experiences, and other positive factors that will contribute to a successful college application process or transition to work or other opportunities.  Our goal with all students is to help them create a successful plan for life after BBA.  We will assist college-bound students in developing an appropriate college list, answer questions and provide support for the college search.  We welcome parental contact and feedback at any time.

Standardized Testing for Juniors

All juniors who took the PSAT in October received their reports and test booklets in advisory.  We also mailed copies of the report home to all families.

The next step is to sign up to take standardized testing in the spring.  Students have many options about which tests to take and when to take them.   Please contact your counselor if you have questions.

Upcoming Test Dates and Deadlines

Saturday, March 9 – Register by Feb. 8 at
SAT Critical Reasoning Test only (no subject tests)
Test is offered at BBA
If student has potential athletic or other conflict for May or June test date, he /she may want to consider taking this one.

Saturday, April 13 – Register by Mar. 8 at
ACT – Sign up for ACT with writing!
Test is offered at BBA

There are additional test dates in April, May and June.  See the ACT and College Board Websites or refer to the testing calendar we mailed home.  Students should not test every time one is offered but we do recommend that juniors take at least one ACT or SAT this year.


Test Prep Opportunities
Free Options:; bookmark “Question of the day”

On-Line courses:

Prep Classes: $100 High End Test Prep (underwritten by BBA – classes at BBA)
*Timed to prepare for either the March SAT or the May SAT
All classes meet from 12:45 – 2:45 on Fridays.

Group 1 / March SAT:            Group 2 / May SAT:

Jan. 25                                            March 22

Feb. 1                                              April 5

Feb. 8                                              April 12

March 1                                            May 3

These courses are identical so students need only sign up for one. To register for either course, bring $100 (payable to BBA) to Mrs. Welsh.  Fee reductions are available to families with financial need – see your counselor.  Registration deadlines: Jan. 11 for Group 1;  March 8 for Group 2.

$300 Manchester Tutorial Center Organized Classes*
*Timed to prepare for SAT at BBA in May

March 24, 31, April 7, 21, 28

Contact the Tutorial Center at 362-0222 to register and pay for the class.

Governor’s Institutes of Vermont Winter Weekend

Sign up for Winter Weekend, February 8-10, 2013 at Goddard College, Plainfield Vermont and February 15-17, 2013, at Marlboro College, Marlboro, VT. REGISTRATION DEADLINE:  January 13, 2013, ($275 all inclusive, room & board)Registration is on a first come, first served, basisat  Choose from 4 courses and participate in a weekend of fun, excitement and learning with other students from around the state who share your interests.

Students in grades 9, 10 or 11 that are interested in learning more about health careers can apply to attend MedQuest, a weeklong summer program that allows students to explore a variety of health careers and shadow health care professionals. Applications can be found online at  Admission is competitive and applications are due February 1, 2013.

College Application Update

Congratulations to the many seniors who have already been admitted to college!  Most seniors have applied and are now waiting for responses from colleges that don’t report decisions as quickly.  We continue to work with the seniors who are still in the process of applying and aim to have them get their applications in by the end of the month.

Mid-Year Grades for Seniors

Many colleges request the mid-year or first semester grades of their applicants.  Rest assured that the registrar will process grades as soon as possible following exams.  We’ll then forward an updated transcript to all colleges listed on students’ transcript request forms.  Because we use a universal mid-year report form, there is no need to provide us with college-specific forms.

Financial Aid

January 1 is opening day for 2013-2014 Financial Aid season!  All students applying for need-based aid should be ready to submit the FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) and the VSAC (Vermont Student Assistance Corp.) grant application in the next month or so.

Parents should begin gathering financial statements and information in anticipation of filing financial aid forms.  Be careful to meet individual college financial aid deadlines.  Please remember that you can estimate on your forms and revise them later.  Many colleges distribute financial aid on a first-come, first-served basis.

Families are encouraged to apply on-line whenever possible: and

Some private colleges also require a form called the CSS Financial Aid Profile Form.  This process should be started immediately so as not to delay funding:

Families who have specific questions about how to complete portions of the financial aid forms may want to take advantage of scheduling an individual appointment with Monda Kelley, VSAC Counselor on January 24th from 2 pm to 5:30 pm and a FAFSA forum workshop 6 pm to 8 pm. Families who want to participate should call Lynne Welsh at 549-8242 in the School and College Counseling Office as soon as possible to put their names on an appointment list.  Other VSAC counselors are on-call and available to answer questions families have about any aspect of applying for financial at their toll-free number: 1-800-798-8722.


The VSAC Unified Scholarship application and information is available on the VSAC website and is available in booklet form in the School and College Counseling Office. The deadline for all scholarships in this application is March 8; there is also an early-bird deadline of February 8.
Scholarship information is also on the Naviance website at:


This Month from the Media and Performing Arts Department

All State Music Festival Auditions will be held in Hartford, VT on Saturday, January 19.


ws 2013

Burr and Burton Academy’s Media and Performing Arts Department is proud to present its Winter Showcase, A Night of Dance, Drama and Cinema, January 10th at 6:00 pm and at 8:00 pm in the school’s Riley Center for the Arts.

The Winter Showcase is the culmination of BBA’s Media and Performing Arts Department’s curricular and extra curricular programs including Broadway Workshop and Pointe. The evening’s presentation of musical theater numbers from Anything Goes, West Side Story, Into the Woods, Les Miserables, classical and contemporary theatrical scenes, dance numbers and the original Fall Film Project, Others is sure to guarantee that there is something for everyone. This year’s Winter Showcase is dedicated to the late Burr and Burton alumna Erin Hehir. Tickets are $3.00 for Students, Faculty and Staff and $5.00 for Adults and can be purchased online at


BBA Students to Appear in Opera Theatre of Weston Production Noye’s Fludde

Jenna as GiraffeTwo BBA students and a teacher will appear in the upcoming Opera Theatre of Weston (OTW) production of Noye’s Fludde (Noah’s Flood) by Benjamin Britten. The one-act opera is a unique take on the well-known biblical tale of Noah and his Ark.  Continuing OTW’s mission of “bringing children to opera and opera to children”, this production will reach new heights as the majority of the cast will consist of local youngsters taking the parts of Noah’s sons and their wives and a 24-member animal chorus. Young students will also participate in the orchestra and more than 2,600 school children will attend the performances. Noye’s Fludde will mark the thirteenth annual Opera in Winter produced by OTW.

Anjelica Caroll will take the lead youth role of Mrs. Sem, wife of one of Noah’s sons; Shea Flanagan will play percussion in the chamber orchestra together with music teacher Julie Freebern who will be part of the recorder quartet. Public performances will be held at the Paramount Theatre, Rutland on January 6 and the Weston Playhouse on January 12 and 13 at 2:00 pm.  Those who attend the public performances can also participate during the show by singing three well-known hymns that underscore the dramatic action of the opera.  Special rehearsals for the “congregational singers” will take place in Rutland and in Weston.  For more information, phone 824-3821.

Tickets for the public performances range from $15 to $28. To purchase tickets for the public performance in Rutland, go to (802/775-0903) and for Weston performances, phone 802/824-3821, e-mail: or go to


January 5, 2013 – Love Never Dies from the Regent Theatre, Melbourne, Australia
This mesmerizing follow-up to the multi-award winning The Phantom of the Opera features a 21-piece orchestra and an impressive cast of 36 including actors Ben Lewis as the Phantom and Anna O’Byrne as Christine Daaé. Based on a book by Ben Elton, the captivating love story of the Phantom and Christine Daaé continues in New York’s playground, Coney Island. After his disappearance from the Paris Opera house, the Phantom begins a new life in New York among the freaks and side-shows. The only thing missing from his new life is his musical protégée, Christine. In an effort to win back his true love, the Phantom lures Christine and her family to this new, sparkling but unknown world.  Click here for preview.

January 19, 2013 – “I Am Slave”  from the Toronto International Film Festival
Inspired by real-life events, “I Am Slave” is a controversial thriller about the shocking existence of the slave trade in London, and one young woman’s struggles to regain the freedom that’s been stolen from her. Director Gabriel Range (“Death of a President”) and screenwriter Jeremy Brock (“Last King of Scotland”) teamed up to tell the story of a young Sudanese girl who is taken from her village and sold into serving a family of Arabs in contemporary England. Though her father is a tribal leader and a man of no small power in their community, none of this means much when Malia is captured with a number of other young women in a raid on their village by mujahideen soldiers. Malia is shipped off to Khartoum, where she’s sold to an Arab family. Mistress of the family Laila uses violence and humiliation to break her spirit and make her an obedient servant. After several years, Laila sends Malia to London to work for her cousin Haleema but there is little change in her routine. Malia works all day and all night, receives no pay, has no free time or privileges, and is rarely allowed outside as she tries to find some way to regain her freedom. This independent film is based on the story of Mende Nazer, who became a human rights activist after serving in the home of a Sudanese diplomat.  Click here for preview.

Tickets an be purchased online at


A World Title to Defend!

Mariette, Sarah, Yola, Melissa ... 3The K1BBS contest team is gearing up to defend its world title in this February’s School Club Roundup.  The Roundup, a ham radio contest for schools, will be held February 11-15.  While other schools are wondering “who are those guys and how are we going to catch them?”, K1BBS is planning on maintaining its world ranking … 1st in the high school division and 3rd overall for all schools.  The plan: (ssssshhhhhh … it’s top secret) bring in the heavy hitters (girls), max out the time limit (24 hours), and fire up the amp (1000 watts).  We can’t make any promises or predictions … other than it’ll be an adventure … it always is.  In past years we have survived snow days (2 one year), a broken antenna, a blown up amplifier, and a fried antenna tuner.  This contest lends new meaning to “Plan B”.  So, listen for us on 40 meters … we’ll be a one band wonder.  Happy CQing.

de K1BBS


From the Library

DVDs, books and other materials for the Refuse to Use Program are now available for borrowing from our Library.  The Lisa B. Tuttle Memorial Library presently houses all materials from The Collaborative.

In addition, we have recently added the following books to our regular fiction and nonfiction collections.

Underworld by Meg Cabot — this is the second in the Abandon series by Meg Cabot .

The Dust Bowl by Dayton Duncan and Ken Burns.

Josser:  Days and Nights in the Circus by Nell Stroud.  It chronicles the experiences the author had while traveling with the circus.

For our student thespians:

Meisner for Teens:  A Life of True Acting by Larry Silverberg.

101 Original One-Minute Monologues for Women Ages 18-25 by Kristen Dabrowski.

Great Scenes for Young Actors from the Stage edited by Craig Slaight and Jack Sharrar.

Great Monologues for Young Actors edited by Craig Slaight and Jack Sharrar.

60 Seconds to Shine edited by John Capecci and Irene Ziegler Aston.

The Lisa B. Tuttle Memorial Library provides students and faculty with resources for study, research and pleasure reading.  We are always looking for ways to serve you better.  If you have any suggestions or comments we would love to hear them.  Just stop by the Library and tell us!

Library website:

Library Hours:
Monday – Thursdays 7:00 am – 4:00 pm
Friday 7:00 am – 1:00 pm


From the Yearbook Staff

Happy New Year from the Yearbook Desk:

Parents of Seniors wishing to show recognition of their students hard work and graduation can now purchase space in the 2013 yearbook. “Parent Ads” are approximately the size of a business card and can hold either a picture with a short message, a short message only or just a picture by itself.  Each ad is $30.00 and must be in by February 1, 2013. To save $5.00 on your seniors yearbooks they must be purchased at school through Mr.Vincent by check (made out to BBA Yearbook) for $50.00.
Seniors who have not handed in pictures for their page must do so ASAP or they risk not being in the book at all.
Yearbooks may also be purchased on line for $55.00 at

Alex Vincent
Yearbook Advisor


Corporate Sponsors

We thank the corporations below for their generous support of Burr and Burton Academy

Headmaster’s List

Berkshire Bank

r.k. Miles

Stratton Mountain Resort

The Orvis Company

The Vermont Country Store

TPW Management

High Honors List

Finn and Stone Insurance

Mack Molding

W.H. Shaw Insurance Agency, Inc.

Honors List

Casella Waste Management

Homestead Landscaping

Mettowee Mill Nursery, Inc.

The Bank of Bennington

Academic Letter

Aspen Motel

Battenkill Communications

Bradley D. Myerson Law Offices

Dublois and Associates

Hand Motors

High-Tech Plumbing & Heating

Academic Pin

Dydo and Company, Inc.

Glebe Mountain Gardens & Landscaping


Mountain Weavers

My Sister’s Garden

TD Bank


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