Monthly Archives: November 2016

November 2016


2  Progress Reports Released
2  Fall Performance – Almost, Maine: 6:30 pm, BBA Riley Center
3  Fall Performance – Almost, Maine: 6:30 pm, BBA Riley Center
4  Fall Performance – Almost, Maine: 6:30 pm, BBA Riley Center
4  Dinner and A Show in support of Student Success Program: 5 pm
5  Fall Performance – Almost, Maine: 6:30 pm, BBA Riley Center
5  Dinner and A Show in support of Student Success Program: 5 pm
11 Veterans Day – no school
14 Refuse to Use 12th Grade Event (Seniors Only): 5 pm, Hunter Seminar Room
15 Mandatory Winter Sports Meeting: 6 pm, BBA Cafeteria|Riley Center
16 Refuse to Use 9th Grade Event #3: 3:30 pm, BBA Hunter Seminar Room
16 Refuse to Use 10th Grade Event #3: 5:30 pm, BBA Hunter Seminar Room
17 Refuse to Use 11th Grade Event #3: 6 pm, BBA cafeteria
18 9th Annual Student vs Faculty Fundraiser Hockey Game: 7 pm, Riley Rink
21 Mountain Campus Parent Conferences: 4 pm – 8 pm
22 Mountain Campus Parent Conferences: 8 am – 2 pm
22 BBA hosts Bernie Sanders: 12 noon, Gym
24 Thanksgiving Break – no school Wednesday, Thursday, Friday


From the Headmaster

Dear Families:

School choice and your right to send your children to BBA is under severe threat. The State Board of Education has proposed a set of rules that, if adopted, would effectively eliminate school choice in all of our towns. Because Burr and Burton is an Independent school, this means that most families would no longer be able to send their children to Burr and Burton. These rules would destroy smaller independent schools, and would seek to force BBA to become, for all intents and purposes, a public school. This is something we will not allow to happen.

The proposed rules would prohibit sending towns from sending students to BBA unless we effectively became a public school. We would be required to have certified teachers, when many of our finest teachers are not certified. We would be required to have certified administrators, when most of our administrators are not. Under these rules, our independent board of trustees, which helps to raise millions of dollars each year ($30 million in the past 10 years) would be disbanded, and with it, our ability to raise funds that directly support education. Representative Oliver Olsen, who is fighting these rules tooth and nail, has calculated that real estate values in this region would plummet by as much as $200 million.

I am attaching two pertinent communications:

  • A letter to education secretary Rebecca Holcombe from the Council of Independent schools, of which I am co-chair. Click here to view.
  • A letter from Representative Olsen to the state board of education. Click here to view.

What can you do? Make your voice heard!

Write a letter to Stephan Morse, Chair of the State Board of Education, and Rebecca Holcombe, the Secretary of Education and ask them to reject these rules. Tell them why school choice is important to you. Tell them how strongly you feel about Burr and Burton. Their contact information is as follows:

Write your State Senators and Representatives. Urge them to fight these rules.

The State Board of Education is made up of unelected political appointees. Their proposed action goes around the legislative process and may very well be deemed unconstitutional. We need to put the maximum pressure on the board and all parties involved so they know that BBA and other independent schools are a source of strength for our community.

This is a test of our strength. We must rise to the test.


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Mark H. Tashjian


From the Advancement Office


Calling all parents to support the 2016 – 2017 Annual Fund!

By now, you have received the Annual Fund brochure, and a personal appeal from Mark Tashjian will be arriving shortly asking for your support of this year’s Annual Fund. As parents, your participation is key to our success – parent support demonstrates your commitment to our mission to serve the needs of all students (and most important, those of your student).

We encourage you to give at a level that works for your family. You may say to yourself, “What can my $10, $25, or $50 dollars do for BBA?” I would like to stress that each and every gift counts as a vote in favor of top-quality education. With your support, we can demonstrate to other donors and foundations that our BBA families are behind us 100%, which in turn, inspires their generous support. Take a look at the Annual Appreciation Report and see how many donors believe in the work that we do at Burr and Burton! It’s impressive.

What does the Annual Fund support? Here are a couple of examples:

  • iPads, cases and service plans at a cost of $765 each
  • 35 after school clubs with faculty mentors
  • Coaching staff for 18 different sports
  • IT support and infrastructure for our digital learning platform
  • Faculty laptops
  • Lab equipment, sports equipment, musical instruments, supplies for classrooms
  • Bus transportation to the Mountain Campus, field trips, to Hildene and for away games
  • And so much more…..

So when considering a gift, think about the iPad your student is using to enhance their learning experience here, or the Mountain Campus semester, or the Student Success Program, or any of the After School Clubs your student enjoys, or the service learning trips planned for the second semester, or any of the amazing “extras” that are available to your student at Burr and Burton Academy. These opportunities are provided by meeting the Annual Fund goal.

Please don’t put it off – make your gift today. It’s easy. You can give in any of the following ways:

  • Make a gift online by clicking on this link
  • Send a check to Burr and Burton Academy, P. O. Box 498, Manchester, VT 05254
  • Stop by the Advancement Office and drop off a gift
  • Become a corporate sponsor if you own your own business
  • Donate a service of some sort to the Online Auction

Any and all gifts count toward the parent participation number and if you also happen to be an alumnus or alumna, your gift counts toward alumni giving!

Thank you for your past support or for your support if you’ve already given this year. Last year was another outstanding year for the Annual Fund, which means it was an outstanding year for the opportunities we were able to provide YOUR student. And we are working to replicate that success – please help us get to the goal!

With grateful appreciation,

cindy's only signature

Cynthia Gubb
Director of Advancement


Grandparents and Special Friends Day

Believe it or not, we are already looking ahead and planning for next year’s Grandparents and Special Friends Day, April 28, 2017. This year’s event was a great success with over 100 grandparents and special friends attending the program which consisted of presentations by faculty and students. Grandparents and special friends were then joined by their grandchildren for lunch in the cafeteria. The day ended with student-led campus tours.  

In order to invite your student’s grandparents and special friends to next year’s event, we are in need of their contact information. Please send their mailing and email address to

Thanks for your help!


From the Creative Arts Department


Burr and Burton Academy’s Performing Arts Department will be presenting Almost, Maine on November 2, 3, 4, 5 in the Riley Center for the Arts.  

Almost, Maine by John Cariani consists of nine short vignettes that explore the intricacies of love in a remote, mythical almost-town called Almost, Maine.  Join us in the deepest winter, on a Friday night under the magical northern lights as residents of Almost, Maine fall in and out of love with often hilarious and unexpected consequences. 

Tickets are $7 for Burr and Burton students, faculty, staff and children under 18, $12 for the general public and can be ordered online at Our 24-hour information line is 802-549-8224. The box office opens one hour before the show.


Prior to the Almost, Maine performances on Friday and Saturday nights, at 5 pm a three course Farm-to-Table dinner hosted by members of BBA’s Student Success Program will be available for $30 per person.

Please support this program by reserving your tickets at:



Keep those applications coming! Let us help you brainstorm essays, review applications and consider good matches. Many seniors have already submitted applications; other students are still working through the initial process. A good rule of thumb is to apply before the December break. Remember to have your test scores sent directly to the colleges from the College Board or ACT. We’re here to assist and support you. If you still need to schedule campus visits, consider taking advantage of Friday, November 11 when there are no classes at BBA.

Families need to pay attention to individual college financial aid deadlines which are different from application deadlines. Please check EACH college’s website for information. Students applying to private colleges should check to see if they are required to complete the CSS Financial Profile Form. Forms are available online at collegeboard org.

Castleton Decision Day Program
Castleton University gives students the opportunity to interview with admissions counselors at BBA on Thursday, December 8. Students will immediately receive their admission decision if the student’s completed application has been received by November 22 (Application fee is waived.) Students must submit a transcript request form to their counselor and sign up for an interview appointment with Castleton in the School and College Counseling Office by November 18. (Students must apply to Castleton by November 22!)

SAT/ACT Registration Information
We recommend that juniors hold off on these tests until the spring semester when they will have had a chance to review PSAT results and take a prep class, if desired. Test prep classes will be scheduled in the winter/spring and we will alert you to those opportunities. Seniors should note that November 3 is the registration deadline for the SAT on December 3 at BBA. Go to Seniors who want to take the December 10 ACT (not at BBA) should register by the November 4 deadline at

Upcoming College Visits
Juniors and seniors may be excused from class, with teacher permission, to attend college meetings. Students and parents can find our most up-to-date list at We also post a paper calendar inside the School and College Counseling Office and list visits in the weekly announcements.

AP Exam Information
All students enrolled in Advanced Placement courses during the 2016-2017 school year, even those enrolled in second semester AP courses, are required to pay an exam fee of $95 per exam by Friday, December 9. Payments after this date will be charged an additional $5 per exam.  Students may bring in cash or checks (made out to Burr and Burton Academy) to Cristin Rose or Lynne Welsh in the School and College Counseling Office. There are fee reductions available for eligible students – please speak with Cristin Rose. All students enrolled in AP courses are required by Burr and Burton to take the AP exam. AP exams will be held May 1 – May 12, 2017.  

College Athletics
Seniors interested in playing Division I or II intercollegiate athletics next year need to register at Stop in the School and College Counseling Office for assistance or computer access.

Selective Service Registration
Eighteen-year-old males need to register with the U.S. Selective Service at Male students need to do so in order to be eligible for federal financial aid.

From the 9th grade corner:
It’s hard to believe, but your 9th grader is now officially one quarter of the way through their Freshmen year.  We are proud to report that on Wednesday, October 19, 154 Freshmen went out into our community with 26 BBA Faculty and Staff and helped at 19 different locations. Collectively they completed almost 1,000 hours of community service.  

Academic Support:
An emphasis has been placed in advisory on using Flexblock wisely. On a normal full week of school this is the block during the middle of day that students can get lunch and complete school work.  We continue to stress the importance of using this time to make-up tests or quizzes, conference with teachers, work on group projects and receive individual help when needed.  Please note that the library is open until 4 pm Monday-Thursday.  

Upcoming Events.

  • Fall Play – Almost Maine, Wed – Sat. November 2 – 5
  • Mandatory Winter Sports Meeting – Tuesday, November 15, 6 pm in the Gym
  • Veteran’s Day – No School, Friday, November 11
  • Thanksgiving Break – No School – Wednesday, November 23 –  Friday, November 25

2016/2017 Scholarship List
Scholarship information can be found in the School and College Counseling Office and is listed in Naviance at:

National Elks Most Valuable Student Scholarship
Eligibility: United States citizen, judged on scholarship, leadership, and financial need.
Award: $1,000 – $60,000; Deadline: November 30
Application online at:

American Legion of Vermont Scholarship
Eligibility: High school seniors whose parents are legal residents of VT. Must have been accepted at an approved and accredited school or college at the time of consideration. “Fillable Form” on website:
Award: $500; Deadline April 1

The School and College Counseling Office contacts:

Maria Bittinger, School and College Counselor for International Students,

Mary Grabarz, Registrar, 549-8127;

Cory Herrington, Dean of Students, Counselor for Freshmen,

Andrea Hogan, School and College Counselor for Sophomores, Juniors, and Seniors, 549-8145;

Kirk Knutson, Director of Admission and School Counseling, 549-8125;

Melissa Michaud, School and College Counselor for Sophomores, Juniors, and Seniors, 549-8130;

Jason Pergament, Director of Student Success Program, 549-8244;

Cristin Rose, School and College Counselor for Sophomores, Juniors, and Seniors, 549-8126;

Lynne Welsh,  Admission and Counseling Office Manager, 549-8242;


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BBA Global Citizenship Club announces project to provide clean water

BBA teachers Lauren Silver and Katie Bove are spearheading a new initiative for their Global Citizenship Club. They have a great group of students and are excited to announce this project and invite your support. Pure Water for the World’s mission is to improve the health and livelihood of children and families, living in underserved communities in Central America and the Caribbean. Please watch this brief video:

Pure Water for the World is special to Ms. Bove in part because her Aunt Carolyn is the Executive Director but mostly because she believes that access to clean, safe water is a basic human right. Unfortunately, an estimated 780 MILLION people do not have access to clean water. This is unacceptable.

In the video is an example of a BIOSAND water filtration system that filters 99% of the bacteria that leads to countless water-born illnesses. It only costs $300 and Pure Water for the World’s staff installs the filter and provides water, hygiene and sanitation training. This filter is saving lives.
If everyone in Burr and Burton were to donate one dollar, we could afford to purchase 2.5 water filters. That’s two and a half families whose lives would be instantly improved. Two dollars, double that. Think of the impact that would have.
There will be a variety of fundraisers that aim to support this worthy organization and they hope that you will consider supporting their efforts.  They are proud to be joining forces with Student Council and National Honor Society, Spanish Club, SRAC and GLOW.
Ms. Bove and Ms. Silver would encourage anyone interested in helping with The Global Citizenship Club to contact either Ms. Silver at or Ms. Bove at for more information.

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From the Athletics Department

Wednesday, November 2, 6 pm: Ice Hockey Parent Meeting
All ice hockey athletes and parents will meet in the Hunter Seminar Room. If you are unable to attend, please contact your coach. Ice Hockey athletes and parents are also expected to attend the Mandatory Winter Sports Parent/Athlete Meeting on 11/15.

Tuesday, November 15, 6 pm: Mandatory winter sports parent/athlete meeting
Our guest speaker is Dr. Onaje Woodbine. He currently teaches and coaches at Phillips Andover. Dr. Woodbine is the author of “Black Gods of the Asphalt” and is a former Yale basketball player.

All winter sports will meet in the gymnasium. From this meeting teams will be directed to individual team meeting locations.

All senior winter athletes will meet on November 15 at 5 pm in the gymnasium for a leadership workshop.

Wednesday, November 16: First day of Ice Hockey practices

Monday, November 28: All other winter sports begin tryouts/practices  Alpine skiing, Nordic skiing, Snowboarding, Basketball, Dance and Wrestling.

New this year, all Freshmen, Juniors and new students must have an updated physical on file with the BBA Health Office. There will be no separate Sports Physical. However, we must have a copy of your physical (dated from 3/1/15 or later) on file for athletes to be eligible for participation in athletics. All the necessary forms needed to participate in athletics can be completed through your OnCampus account. These forms must be completed prior to the meetings on November 15. Completing them sooner rather than later is greatly appreciated from the administrative end. If you are having difficulty with the forms, assistance and computer access will be provided immediately following the winter sports meeting in the basement of the Smith Center.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact Director of Athletics, Dave Miceli at

Please note that there are competitions scheduled over the holiday break December 23- January 9 and during the February break 17-26. Please keep this in mind when scheduling family vacations.

Varsity Coaches:

Alpine Skiing: Trey Spencer

Girls Basketball: Erin Mears

Boys Basketball: Eric Green

Dance: Elizabeth Strano

Boys Ice Hockey: Mark Slade

Girls Ice Hockey: Ed Lewicki

Nordic Skiing: Ian Black

Snowboarding: Jason Thomas

Wrestling: Zach Monforte

Like us on facebook or follow us on Twitter for all your Bulldog athletic updates!



Ecuadorian exchange at BBA

In October, fifteen students and their teacher from Ecuador visited Burr and Burton Academy. The exchange between BBA and Unidad Educativa Santana was started in 2014 by Spanish teacher Chris Nolan and his Ecuadorian counterpart Valery Paz.
After spending the weekend in Boston, the group traveled north to Manchester where they were greeted by their awaiting host families with whom they spent the following two weeks.  In Manchester, the Ecuadorian students got a glimpse of typical American life while also attending classes at BBA. They rounded out their time in Manchester with local activities such as fly fishing courtesy of the Orvis Fly Fishing School, pumpkin carving, hiking and tackling the Vermontster at Ben and Jerry’s.  After leaving Manchester, the group spent the following week visiting an array of sites in New York City and Washington, DC.
In June, the BBA students who hosted students from Santana will travel to Cuenca, Ecuador for a three week trip that will complete this exchange cycle.

Burr and Burton to Host Bernie Sanders


For information click HERE.


From the Library  

To see what’s happening in the Lisa B. Tuttle Library click on this link.

Library Hours

Monday – Thursday 7:20 am – 4 pm
Friday 7:20 am – 1 pm

Margi Putney
Library Media Specialist
(802) 549-8122


Corporate Sponsors

We thank the corporations below for their generous support of Burr and Burton Academy and hope you will in turn support these businesses.

Headmasters List

Berkshire Bank
Bromley Mountain
Mack Molding
r. k. Miles Inc.
Stratton Mountain Resort
The Orvis Company
The Vermont Country Store

High Honors List

Engineered Printing Solutions
Finn and Stone Insurance
Rugg Valley Landscaping
Spiral Press Café
The Equinox Golf Resort and Spa
The Perfect Wife Restaurant and Tavern
W. H. Shaw Insurance Agency, Inc.

Honors List

Bank of Bennington
Mettowee Mill Garden Center & Landscaping
The Aspen at Manchester

Academic Letter

Battenkill Communications
Bradley D. Myerson Law Offices
Dibble Painters
Equinox Asset Management
JOY – all things underthings
Lily of the Valley Florist
Mountain Goat North, Inc.
Mountain Weavers
Northshire Bookstore
People’s United Bank
Spivey Lemonik Swenor, PC
The Dorset Inn and Barrows House 

The Richards Group, Insurance & Financial Services
The Works Bakery Café

Academic Pin

Equipe Sport, Ltd
Hill Farm Inn
iShip Express
Midura Building Company
Samuelson Law Offices
Scott Thompson Builders

Do You Believe in Magic?
2016 Gala Sponsors

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Abracadabra Sponsors

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Hocus Pocus Sponsor

Four Seasons Sotheby’s

Presto Sponsors

Black Diamond Tree Service
Mr. and Mrs. Peter Drasher
H.N. Williams Store
Langway Motors
Manchester Capital
Southwestern Vermont Medical Center
Stratton Rentals

Voila Sponsors

Atlantic Projects
Dorset Inn & Barrows House
Equinox Village
Glebe Mountain Gardens and Landscaping
Lily of the Valley Florists
Mountain Goat North, Inc.
The Reluctant Panther
Rutland Regional Medical Center
Spivey Lemonik Swenor
Tara Pollio Floral Event Design
The Vermont Country Store

Magic Wand Sponsors

Arcadia Arts
Bradley’s Pro Shop
Cole and Company
Decorative Interiors
Deerfield Valley Dental Care – Dr. R. Ruhl
GSK Climate Control
Heinel’s Clothiers
Heritage Credit Union
Long Ago and Far Away
L/S Gerontology Seminars – Lois Schram
McWayne Jewelers
Mount Snow
Nerium International
Vermont Kitchen Supply
Weston Country Store

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