Wednesday, April 19, 2017


Montpelier - On April 8th, over 300 students from around the state gathered at Montpelier Union High School to participate in the state's annual Vermont History Day. Students were tasked with researching and presenting a topic relating to this year’s theme, “Taking a Stand”.

Vergennes Union Middle School students Adam Clark and Jarret Muzzy came in first place in the junior group exhibit category for their exhibit, "Lucy Terry Prince". The two were also awarded the Deborah Pickman Clifford Vermont Women's History Prize for an outstanding entry focusing on a Vermont woman. Clark and Muzzy will represent Vermont at National History Day in Maryland on June 11-15. Vergennes Union High School student, Ian Gramling, will also represent Vermont at National History Day for his second place win in the senior individual exhibit category for his exhibit, "The Winter War: Finland defies the Soviet Juggernaut". Also taking home a prize were Ferrisburgh Central School students, Sam Michaels and Henry Anderson, for their exhibit on Bernie Sanders. Michaels and Anderson won the Vermont History Award for demonstrating outstanding use of primary sources.

Other local students competing at History Day were Vergennes Union Elementary School students Evan Rakowski, Carlyn Rapoport, Morgan Hurlburt, and Vergennes Union Middle School student, Ryley Olsen. These students all competed in the junior individual exhibit category and their topics were as follows: "Theodor Geisel's Fight for the Environment and Against Nazi's" by Evan Rakowski, "Benedict Spinoza: Crusader of Free Beliefs", by Morgan Hurlburt,  "Helen Keller: Champion of the Disabled" by Carlyn Rapoport, and "Joan of Arc: Fighting the French", by Ryley Olsen. The adult advisors for the students included Rebecca Coffey, Melissa Muzzy, Josh Brooks and Kathy Douglas.

Vermont History Day is open to Vermont students in grades five through twelve and home study students ages 10 to 18. This educational program is designed to encourage students to develop research and critical thinking skills through the study of history. Students spend months researching their project, writing a process paper, and creating their exhibit. On the day of the event, the students are interviewed by a panel of judges and their exhibits are scored based on a combination of the interview and how well their exhibit visually represented their research while addressing the year’s theme. Students can also chose to enter a research paper, performance, documentary or website.

Thursday, April 13, 2017

Congratulations to the VUHS Symphonic Band & Concert Choir

The VUHS Symphonic Band and Concert Choir traveled to Philadelphia, PA April 6-9, 2017 to perform in the World Strides OnStage Music Festival. Each ensemble performed on April 8th for a panel of three collegiate music educators. They received comments and rankings from each adjudicator. The Symphonic Band received a 1st Place Gold ranking, and the concert Choir earned a Silver ranking. The entire VUHS music group was awarded a trophy for the Festival Spirit Award, given to a group that best represents their school and community at the festival. Bravo Vergennes!

While in Philadelphia, the 82 music students and 16 chaperones took a historic walking tour of the Old City, and saw a production of "Freedom Rising" at the National Constitution Center. They heard an incredible concert at the Kimmel Center by the Philadelphia Orchestra, and shivered through a baseball game between the Phillies and the Nationals. The group also spent time at the Philadelphia Museum of Art.

Many thanks to the VUHS music parents for organizing an amazing welcome home from the festival complete with signs, Main Street lined with supporters, and lots of fire trucks and police vehicles with flashing lights! The buses were filled with students and adults smiling, shrieking, and crying!

Mrs. O'Daniel and Miss Fitt are filled with pride for the way that the Symphonic Band and Concert Choir performed at the music festival. The hard work and practice of every student showed in the confidence they had as they performed in the adjudicated concert. Their attitudes and behavior were exemplary. VUHS is a wonderful school where every student can experience success!

Friday, April 7, 2017

April is Alcohol Awareness Month

Hello from your resident Student Assistance Professional, Suzanne Monzel. Since April is Alcohol Awareness Month, it is my hope that providing information about key actions parents and caregivers can take to prevent underage alcohol abuse will support healthy conversations and strong communication about the risks of alcohol use.

The following information is taken from the “Family Resource Guide” developed by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s (SAMHSA) Center for Substance Abuse Prevention. SAMHSA talks about 6 key actions parents and caregivers can take to prevent childhood alcohol abuse.

·         Establish and maintain good communication with your student.
·         Get involved, and stay involved in your student’s life.
·         Make clear rules and enforce them with consistency and appropriate consequences.
·         Be positive role models.
·         Teach your student to choose friends wisely.
·         Monitor your student’s activities.

Some of the tips SAMHSA suggests to start a discussion with your student about alcohol include:

·         Discuss family rules about alcohol (clear expectations to not use alcohol, consequences if they do).
·         Discuss the laws about underage drinking (make sure it is clear that drinking alcohol under the age of 21 is illegal).
·         Teach your student about the dangers of underage drinking.
·         Monitor alcohol in your home (make sure alcohol is not available at parties given by your student).
·         Think carefully about what to tell your student.
·         If you drink yourself, be sure to drink responsibly around your student (don’t drink and drive, consider no alcohol parties that include your student).
·         Help your student find ways to have fun that don’t involve alcohol.
·         Help your student get professional help (if you think they may be using alcohol).

SAHMSA has a guide with activities available to help you talk about alcohol with your student on the Too Smart to Start website.

Please remember that “students are less likely to drink and have fewer alcohol-related problems when their parents/caregivers set clear expectations about alcohol use” (Nash, McQueen, and Bray, 2005).

VUHS Students Inducted into the National Technical Honor Society

The following students from VUHS were inducted into the National Technical Honor Society on Thursday, March 23, 2017. Congratulations!

Lillian Clark – Design & Illustration
Adelaide Cushman - Cosmetology
Norah Deming – Design & Illustration
Breanna De Smit – Engineering Design
Malcolm Donovan-Cook – Addison Repertory Theatre
Emma Duprey – Medical Professions
Kayla Gevry - Cosmetology
Melina Myers – Medical Professions
Alyssa Saunders – Medical Professions
Will Wormer – Engineering Design

The mission of the NTHS is to honor student achievement and leadership in career and technical education, promote educational excellence, award scholarships, and enhance career opportunities for the NTHS membership. The induction ceremony recognizes deserving technical center students and increases community awareness of the talents and abilities of the young people and adults who choose technical education pathways to a successful future. Criteria for induction is: no marking period average below a 92%, semester average of at least a 93%, no more than 3 absences, at least a B- in any companion classes, and teacher recommendation.


Vergennes American Legion Post #14 will sponsor five VUHS delegates to the Green Mountain Boys’ State held June 18-23 on the campus of Lyndon State College in Lyndonville, Vermont: Lance Bergmans, Mason Charlebois, Casey Kimball, Ben Praamsma, Aaron Premont. The boys were nominated by faculty and staff based on leadership, character and honesty, cooperativeness, community participation and service, and scholarship.
Green Mountain Boys’ State is a leadership laboratory for rising high school senior boys. The main focus is Vermont town, county, and state government, and its organization, policies and procedures. They will work on issues relating to Vermont, and debate and discuss these issues during a session at the State House in Montpelier.