In their tween and teenage years, girls become dramatically less self-assured, their confidence plummets, and feelings of insecurity dictate their everyday lives. The adolescent drive for acceptance, the way we socialize women, and the double standards we hold have compounded the negative peer pressure on girls that causes many to question their body, their intelligence, and their worth. By the age of 14, the average girl is much less confident than the average boy. However, this feeling isn’t just temporary for some women. Confidence is essential for turning thoughts and feelings into action, and when the confidence gap that opens during puberty remains during adulthood, it harms women as they enter the workforce.
This week on 0684-Radi0, our free podcast (subscribe here in the iTunes Store), we talk to New Canaan’s Sheri West, founder of LiveGirl, about the nonprofit organization’s efforts to address a growing mental health crisis among young people and especially girls. An important part of LiveGirl’s plan includes a new partnership with Silver Hill Hospital to help train mentors. We plan to interview Silver Hill for next week’s podcast. Here are recent episodes of 0684-Radi0:
Despite a high number of move-ins in this strong local real estate market, enrollment projections for New Canaan Public Schools call for an overall slight decline next academic year, district officials say. As of June 18, the district had 4,070 students enrolled in kindergarten through 12th grade, and is projected to reach 4,095, according to data made public at last week’s Board of Education meeting. The figures compare to 4,176 students enrolled K-12 in the school year that just ended, Deputy Superintendent Dr. Jill Correnty said during the June 21 Board of Ed meeting, held in the Wagner Room at New Canaan High School. District officials said that by the time the 2021-2022 starts, the enrollment figures could end up rising, for a number of reasons. Many of the move-ins likely not have enrolled their children yet, Correnty said, and the figures do not include those who are “pre-registered” or in the process of finalizing residency and other documentation for the district.
Two nonprofit organizations in New Canaan teamed up to organize an art exhibition celebrating women that opened Thursday. “She Is Rising,” presented by LiveGirl and the Carriage Barn Arts Center, runs through June 5 at the well-known gallery in Waveny Park. Sheri West, LiveGirl’s founder and CEO, said the exhibition reflects her organization’s work to “build confident, inclusive, leaders.”
“We’re working to close the female leadership gap, and we’re working to create a world where women can rise and take on positions of power and leadership,” West said. “She Is Rising” features artists such as Ashley Longshore, TL Duryea, and Michele Voight. The art, ranging from embroidery to paintings, makes “powerful statements,” according to Hilary Wittman, the executive director of the Carriage Barn.
Enrollment in New Canaan Public Schools is projected to decrease by 81 students next year, according to data released this week. The projected decline for the 2021-22 school year—from 4,176 to 4,095 students in kindergarten through twelfth grade—reflects decreases at all levels, according to Darlene Pianka, the district’s human resources director. The elementary schools are projected to see 34 fewer students overall next academic year, Pianka told members of the Board of Education during their regular meeting Monday. Citing projections from Marlborough, Mass.-based New England School Development Council or ‘NESDEC,’ she said Saxe Middle School is expected to decline by 15 students and New Canaan High School by 32. “Generally speaking, the trend that is indicated by our demographers is that we are in a period of stable but slightly decreasing enrollment in the middle and the elementary schools,” Pianka said during the meeting, held in the Wagner Room at NCHS as well as via videoconference.
In a memo sent to the Board of Ed prior to her presentation, Pianka said, “If we look at projections a few years out we might describe our enrollment as on a slow steady decrease from 4,176 students this year, decreasing to 4,101 students in the 2022-23 school year, a projected decrease of 75 net students, followed by future decreases in enrollment.”
Current enrollment stands at 4,234 students including pre-K students and those placed out-of-district—up 10 from last year’s total, Pianka said.