School Start Times: Superintendent Floats Proposal To Start Elementary Schools Earlier, Followed by High School and Saxe

Local elementary schools could start as early as 7:30 a.m., with New Canaan High School starting later in the morning and all of Saxe Middle School starting last, under a new proposal that Superintendent of Schools Dr. Bryan Luizzi unveiled Monday night. Citing anecdotal evidence that younger children tend to tire in the afternoon, Luizzi said the proposed new system—suggested by New Canaan Public Schools Transportation Coordinator Roy Walder—could largely preserve the current and cost-effective three-tier busing system, though it also comes with tradeoffs. “I’m not going to say this is the scenario I am recommending yet, because there is more work to be done,” Luizzi told members of the Board of Education at their regular meeting, held in the Wagner Room at New Canaan High School and attended by about 25 parents. “But I want to share it with you because work is being done and continues to be done. The magnitude of the change—it moves everybody.

NCHS To Live-Stream Sports Contests at Dunning, Gym with New System

New Canaan High School Rams fans soon will have the ability to watch significantly more sports contests online, as district officials work with the broadcast arm of an Indianapolis-based organization that helps develop standards and rules for interscholastic activities nationwide. Starting no later than this fall, some 200 games and matches at Dunning Stadium and the NCHS gym will be streamed live, according to Athletic Director Jay Egan, through the High School Sports Network, a service of the National Federation of State High School Associations. “I think it’s an expectation that our parents have that this is a service we can provide for them and I think people are really excited thinking about being able to do this,” Egan told members of the Board of Education during their regular meeting, held Monday night in the Wagner Room at NCHS. The service costs user a fee in the range of $25 to $50 per year, and involves installing camera equipment at the NCHS facilities, Egan said. The approximately $6,500 it costs to get up and running is being paid for by the Booster Club, he said. 

The coverage will complement and expand about 55 to 60 games already streamed online each year through an excellent student-operated NCTV 78 YouTube channel.

Board of Ed Honors Saxe Science Teacher Who Won Environmental Education Award

District officials on Monday night honored a Saxe Middle School science teacher who recently received a national award that recognizes educators who use innovative approaches to environmental education. Laura Poidomani received the Presidential Innovation Award for Environmental Educators. Administered by the White House Council on Environmental Quality as well as the federal Environmental Protection Agency, it also recognizes outstanding teachers who “use the environment as a context for learning for their students.”

Superintendent of Schools Dr. Bryan Luizzi said during a board meeting that Poidomani is one of just 12 educators nationwide—and the only one in this EPA region (there are 10)—to receive the award. Poidomani is a teacher of 18 years experience, he said, and she has taught in every grade. “Her classroom vividly reflects how she integrates direct experiences with textbook learning,” Luizzi said at the meeting, held in the Wagner Room at New Canaan High School.