Friday, April 13, 2018

Congratulations to MERHS 2018 Green Difference Award Winners!

Congratulations to our 2018 
Green Difference Awards Winners and Honorable Mentions!


Outstanding Green Student

Manchester-Essex High School Green Team (MA) 
 Annie Martin - 3 Season Gardening

Manchester-Essex High School Green Team (MA) 
Gabrielle Allmendinger - Green Team President & Project Green Schools President World Water Day Resolution/Sustainability


Manchester-Essex High School Green Scholars (MA) 
Nils Taylor- Sustainable Practices



Thursday, April 12, 2018

Annual Special Education Parent Rights Workshop

Annual Special Education Parent Rights Workshop

Please join us for an engaging training and discussion on special education eligibility criteria, IEP development, dispute resolution, and understanding your parent rights at each stage of the special education process.





Annual Special Education Parent Rights Workshop
Presenter - Attorney Amy Rogers

May. 14, 2018
6:00 PM - 7:30 PM 
MERHS Learning Commons


Contact Rosie Read at readr@mersd.org or 978-525-6060 to register for the workshop.

MERSD 2018-2019 District Calendar!

MERSD 2018-2019 District Calendar

Now available on the MERSD site!

Click Here!


Friday, April 6, 2018

Town Meeting Update!

On Monday night, the MERSD FY 19 Budget passed with a unanimous vote at the Manchester Town Meeting.   We are very thankful for the support of the Manchester residents, and we look forward to Essex Town Meeting the next and final step in our process.



Essex Town Meeting is coming up on Monday, May 7th!



For More Information Please Visit our Budget Page



Thursday, March 29, 2018

MERSD FY19 Budget Update

As Manchester and Essex Annual Town Meetings approach in April and May, it is important to update residents regarding the state of our Regional School District. We are happy to report that our students are thriving and our faculty and staff continues to deliver an excellent education to all learners district-wide.   

Our current fiscal situation requires us to make some difficult choices, though.  MERSD began the FY19 facing a projected $735,000 (16%) increase in health care costs.  This increase followed a 28% increase in fiscal year 2018, for a total increase of $1.5 million dollars in two years.  We are pleased to report that projection for increase has decreased to 10%.  This rate improvement has allowed us to avoid the further cuts to program and still address unmet staffing needs at the secondary level.   However, the overall impact of the two-year increase in health care exceeds available funds under a level services budget, leaving limited funds to manage annual increased costs and program investments. 


In the short-term, to manage the FY19 budget, we have identified a series of efficiencies in the areas of services, fees, staffing and program to create a balanced budget and meet our goal of working within the limits of Proposition 2.5.

Gap Closing Measures

Services/Fees/Revenue Reductions


Staff Reduction through attrition
$354,000
50 % Reduction Overtime/Summer work All Departments
$60,000
Hiring Cap
$30,000
Eliminate Late Buses
$25,000
HS Student Activity Cut
$20,000
Curriculum/PD Small Cap Reduction
$20,000
IDEA Grant Reorganization
$17,000
Solar Savings
$10,000
Essex - Green Community Upgrades
$10,000
Full Day K on Wednesdays/Eliminate Transportation Cost
$8,000
Reduce Custodial Supply Line
$7,500
Retirement Replacement Offset
$5,000
Eliminate Crossing Guard Fund
$4,500
Reduce Nurse Substitute Line to FY 18 actual

$3,000
$574,000


The slight enrollment decrease is working in our favor by allowing us to reduce personnel cost through attrition and retirements. Although we continue to manage a cohort of students in record high-class sizes, these students are now at the secondary level. Entering elementary class enrollments are smaller due to a demographic decline in school-age children.  This population shift has allowed us to reduce classroom sections and staffing at the elementary level while maintaining class size benchmarks, making it possible to shift resources to the secondary level to address the larger cohort.

















Total
Student Population
K
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
HS
MS
Elm
2016-2017
77
82
88
112
122
115
124
132
131
115
103
98
109
425
387
596
2017-2018
77
82
73
92
116
125
117
125
131
133
116
100
99
448
373
565
2018-2019
70
77
82
73
92
116
125
117
125
131
133
116
100
480
367
510
2019-2020
70
70
77
82
73
92
116
125
117
125
131
133
116
505
358
464
2020-2021
70
70
70
77
82
73
92
116
125
117
125
131
133
506
333
442

Over time, MERSD will attempt to work collaboratively with teachers and staff to find ways to lower the cost of health insurance.  Similar collaborative efforts have generated significant results in the past, including a recent agreement to reduce the cost of mandated health insurance for retirees (known as Other Post-Employment Benefits or OPEB) by migrating staff to less costly plans.  This effort has enabled MERSD to budget $1.7 million over four years – funded entirely by savings from employee benefits restructuring – to be placed into a trust fund to ensure that long-term liabilities do not pose an unnecessary future burden on taxpayers.  This successful collaboration has put MERSD far ahead of most other regional school districts, which have yet to face mounting OPEB liabilities. 

The District prides itself in working collaboratively and positively with both its staff and the Town boards – all who have a common purpose in mind – delivering excellent services in the most fiscally responsible manner. We thank the leadership in both towns for working with us collaboratively to develop this budget, and for supporting this critical effort to maintain the District’s educational excellence.







Tuesday, March 20, 2018

Congratulations MERHS Award Winners!

Scholastic Art and Writing Awards


In 2018, students across the country submitted nearly 350,000 works of art and writing to the Scholastic Awards.  Submissions are juried by luminaries in the visual and literary arts, some of whom are past award recipients. Panelists look for works that best exemplify originality, technical skill, and the emergence of a personal voice or vision.
Gold Key works from the state level are judged nationally by an impressive panel of creative–industry experts to receive National Medals, including Gold, Silver, American Visions & Voices, Portfolio Silver with Distinction or Portfolio Gold Medals and Special Achievement Awards.  (https://www.artandwriting.org/)
Manchester Essex Regional High School is pleased to announce three nationally recognized students:
Natascha Braase               Untitled                 Silver Medal          Photography
Thymen DeWidt                Hyper Flexible      Silver Medal         Photography
Rebecca Braimon             Kolibel’naya          Silver Medal         Flash Fiction

Additionally, Bridget Twombly recently won 3rd place for one of her photographs at the annual Endicott College High School Art competition. Nell McKeon also won an award. It was juried by Lydia Gordon, Assistant Curator for Exhibitions and Research, Peabody Essex Museum. Over 100 students' works were considered for the competition and all are on display at the Manninen Center for the Arts on the Endicott campus until March 28th.

DECA Award Winners

Your 2018 MERHS DECA team has completed their state competition with fantastic results.

First Place Winners
Anton Kozyrev
Micaela Coonley
Laura Hannafin
William Smith

Second Place Winners
Christina Bullock
Charlotte Pick
Caroline Harrington

Third Place Winners
Jacob D'ambrosio
Hannah Oettinger
Faithe Shatford
(The ten students listed above qualify for the International Competition in Atlanta)

20 students made Top Ten Finalists
Liam Kelley, Zackery Mcpherson, Evan Fitzgerald, Dylan Wilson, Anton Kozyrev, Christina Bullock, Charlotte Pick, Tucker Jaworski, Micaela Coonley, Laura Hannafin, Maxine Hickey, Annika Smith, Isabel Del Valle, Alexi Woodward, Caroline Harrington, Tucker Hoff, William Smith, Jacob D'ambrosio, Hannah Oettinger, Faithe Shatford

Medal Winners

1st Place Role Play
Anton Kozyrev
Christina Bullock Charlotte Pick
Ben Flood
Tucker Hoff

2nd Place Role Play
Anton Kozyrev
Christina Bullock Charlotte Pick

3rd Place Role Play
Caroline Harrington
William Smith

1st Place Written Exam
Micaela Coonley, Laura Hannafin


Authentic Science Research

Congratulations to seniors Belle Allmendinger, Michael Conlon, Coleman Komishane and Anika Martz for being selected to present their science research at the Southern New England Junior Science and Humanities Symposia at Boston University on Thursday.  An extra congratulations to Anika Martz for placing third in the poster competition for her research, “Cross Talk Between the Intestine and Thymus in Dendra Mice.”  Anika completed her research at the Massachusetts General Hospital Immunology Department for six weeks during the summer of 2017. 

Journalism Awards

On March 16th the journalism class received a First Place in Excellence in Sports Writing and an Honorable Mention (second runner-up) in Excellence in News Writing from the Suffolk University Greater Boston High School Newspaper contest. Thirty Boston-area schools competed.

Journalism staff honored include the following students:

Sophia Larson                            
Shannon Adam        
Julia Kaper                 
Charlotte Pick                                            
Sofia Gillespie                           
Mia Cromwell           
Paige Swanson         
Hannah Freeman    
Anton Kozyrev         
Emily Clark
Abigail Fitzgibbon
Juliette Kelley
James Riordan
Sirine Benali
Holly Fossa
Heather Holley
Austin Pare