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FFA Chicken BBQ

Sunday, June 14, 2015

at the HVRHS AG-ED Center   4:30 pm – 7:30 pm (continuous serving)

          Adults $12.00 / Child (under 10) $6.00             Take-outs Available                                      

FFA Alumni imageDinner includes: BBQ Chicken, Baked Potato, salad, roll, beverage & ice cream

Proceeds benefit FFA Alumni Scholarship Fund


Xi'an Wall Tour

Xi’an Wall Tour

On the Ground in China

HVRHS China Trip: Xi’an

Report by HVRHS student Maddie Longwell, ’15: Our day started at the pearl factory where we were given a brief introduction into how pearls are made and –more importantly—how to tell which are fake. After the pearl market, we headed further out of the city to the Summer Palace.

Home to the Emperor and Empress in the warmer months, the Summer Palace stretches along the banks of a man-made lake. After walking through the palace, we took a dragon boat across the lake to catch a better view of the architecture.

The most interesting part of our day started in the afternoon. First, we stopped at the Beijing Silk Market. Though our tour guide encouraged us to be “good bargainers” we all found it challenging. After the relatively unsuccessful shopping trip, a few of us took a break at a nearby restaurant.

Though the restaurant wasn’t on our itinerary, we learned a great deal from it, and made a new friend! The owner of the restaurant, a Taiwanese man who had lived in the U.S. for some time, told us all about adjusting to Beijing culture.

Unfortunately, our new knowledge couldn’t be put to much use as we were starting on the next part of our journey to the ancient city of Xi’an later that night. In the late evening, our tour guide dropped us off at the train station. Feeling isolated in our new environment, our group found safety and a slice of home in a Starbucks.

Two hours later, we boarded our train to Xi’an. The train was crowded and unlike anything any of us had seen before. As we departed from Beijing, we tried our best to get comfortable in the cramped compartments and eagerly awaited our arrival to Xi’an

Local Students Ranked Nationally in Le Grand Concours

Cameryn Caruso, Sara VanDeusen, Madeleine Longwell, and Katherine Starr of Housatonic Valley Regional High School, Falls Village, Connecticut have ranked nationally in the 80th annual event. Le Grand Concours is a national competition sponsored by the American Association of Teachers of French. Students were evaluated for their written, oral and listening comprehension skills in French. 91,000 students in all 50 states competed in the 2015 event. Cameryn Caruso (10th grade) ranked 11th in the state of Connecticut and 11th nationally for French Level 1. Sara VanDeusen (10th grade) ranked 12th in the state and 13th nationally for French Level 2. Madeleine Longwell (12th grade) and Katherine Starr (10th grade) ranked 14th in the state and 18th nationally for French Level 3. All are students of Marjorie Becker. They will be honored at a special awards ceremony to be held in May at Amity High School in Woodbridge, CT where they will receive the Bronze medal.

The following HVRHS students received the Certificat d’Honneur for having scored in the top 50th percentile nationally:

Level 1: Maggie Sullivan

Level 2: Madison Caruso, Sophie Lake-Ginouves, Declan Saint-Onge, Julian Weisman

Level 3: Sierra Grossman, Kianjai Huggan, Hannah McGuire

Level 4: Marc Hernandez, Fiona Ocain

AATF President Mary Helen Kashuba indicated: French students who rank nationally in Le Grand Concours prove that hard work in the classroom brings success and recognition. These outstanding students reflect well on the French programs in their schools and French teachers under whose guidance they have studied. They constitute an asset to their communities and their present and future schools because they have multilingual capabilities, a greater understanding of world cultures and a high work ethic. They are world citizens and future leaders; it is gratifying to know that such excellent students value their French studies and strive to continually learn and improve.

Important Senior Portrait Order Deadline Approaching:

The deadline to purchase your student’s senior images is April 29, 2015. To ensure you have the opportunity to purchase these images, visit: before the deadline. If you have any questions or need your session ID / access code, please contact Prestige Portraits customer service at 1-­800-­736­-4775 (M-­F 8am­-9pm; Sat 9am-­9pm EST.)


Join Survive the Drive for a Special Defensive Driver Training Clinic on June 25th, 2015 at Lime Rock Park in Lakeville, CT
For parents, this might be one of the most important and memorable experiences you ever share with your child. Learning defensive driving techniques, together, that may one day save your lives.
Survive the Drive is the longest running program of its kind, presenting their teen driver safety program to students for nearly two decades. President and Executive Director, Bob Green has visited over 600 venues and has made over 1,500 presentations to over 130,000 individuals.
Survive the Drive – “Behind the Wheel” is offering hands-on defensive driver instruction in addition to their group presentations on distracted driving. This defensive driving portion of their program offers teen-friendly, comprehensive and cost effective defensive driver education.
Survive the Drive has created this safety program based on information and experience gathered by their professional staff and Board of Directors each offering decades of service, education and experience in driver training, transportation safety and auto racing instruction.
Survive the Drive is currently registering participants for their June 25, 2015 “Behind the Wheel” Defensive Driver Training course at Lime Rock Park in Lakeville, CT. Survive the Drive allows students to participate in the school in their personal vehicles to experience the feel of the car they will be using in their daily driving activities.
The program’s early registration and group discount cost is $250 per four hour session.  Ask about scholarship eligibility for your teen.  Due to the extreme importance of defensive driver training, Survive the Drive is confident the seats will sell out and will introduce new future dates. Participating students must possess and present a valid DMV permit or drivers license. For more information and to register call or text 860-806-3042 or email
“Every driver should have affordable access to learn car control techniques and accident avoidance maneuvers that may someday save their life”, Lori Demaraies, Marketing Director of Survive the Drive.
About Survivethedrive®: Survive the Drive is an independent, not for profit, educational resource that provides risk awareness presentations and hands-on defensive driver training to individuals, schools and community groups. For more information, contact Lori at 860-806-3042,, and visit their website at
About Lime Rock Park: Lime Rock Park, listed on the National Register of Historic Places, has been “New England’s Road Racing Home” since its opening in 1957. It is a 7-turn, 1.5-mile road racing circuit in Connecticut’s celebrated Northwest Corner – approximately halfway between New York City and Boston – and holds FIA-listed national and international road racing events, driving schools, track days, corporate events, and public and private functions. The president and owner of Lime Rock Park is Skip Barber. Learn more at

IMG_4083 (2)

Who’sCTEKS Robotics Team 716 Lead Mentor Andy Brockway

The Woodie Flowers Award celebrates effective communication in the art and science of engineering and design.
“Dr. William Murphy founded this award in 1996 to recognize mentors who are strong leaders and who inspire and empower using excellent communication skills to help their student team members understand the challenges, opportunities and satisfaction involved in the discipline of engineering and design. For 2015, FIRST Robotics will recognize one mentor at each Regional and one mentor from each District Championship with the Woodie Flowers Finalist Award. At the FIRST Championship in April, one mentor will be selected from this year’s Finalists and re-nominated prior-year Finalists will be presented with the 2015 Championship Woodie Flowers Award. New this year, each Woodie Flowers Finalist will receive a Blue Banner for their team to display. The judging panel believes the Blue Banner will emphasize the importance of the partnerships between students, mentors, and everyone who is a part of a FIRST team. The New England District Championship is loaded with great teams with outstanding mentors. Judging was crazy hard and intensely competitive. The New England District students are lucky. Thanks for making the judges work very hard!

The winner has a long history with FIRST. Not a perfect record though. He missed one team meeting in 13 years! But maybe that was OK. He has been busy mentoring almost every FRC and FLL team within 25 miles. He has helped crease a scholarship fund. He holds classes in topics from CAD to programming. He inspires students to learn effective communication. He does it all. The team’s home school even has a new technology shop. It has a plaque honoring this mentor’s contribution to STEM education. Please join us in celebrating the New England District Championship Woodie Flowers Finalist winner, Team 716’s Andy Brockway.” Congratulations Andy!

Have you reserved your copy of the 2015 yearbook yet?
The price is $65. Place your order by April 13th!
Online orders can be placed at Our order number is 14109.
Or you can bring in a check made payable to HVRHS and give to Ms. McLeod.


The Class of 2015 Graduation Ceremony

Wednesday, June 24

6:30 pm at HVRHS.





Exploring Mars: Following Curiosity

The Salisbury Forum in conjunction with the Cornwall Library will present Florence Tan NASA’s lead electrical engineer for the instruments on the Curiosity Rover to discuss the exploration on Mars.         

Friday, May 1    -   7:30 pm at HVRHS

Admission is free! Click this link for more info: Salisbury Forum


Open to students of Canann & Falls Village (ages 14 & 15) the Summer Jobs Program is a service provided by the Canaan Community Trust with the support of the Town of Falls Village and Lee Kellogg School. See the high school main office for applications or click here: 2015 application package 

Battle of the Bands

Saturday, April 25 – HVRHS 6:30 pm

Calling all bands!! Register at

Lecture Series_2015


Registration for Next Year’s Courses is about to begin!

On Monday February 23, counselors will meet with the freshman, sophomore and junior classes to talk about registration for next year’s classes. Teachers have been making course level recommendations for each student and on Monday, the portal will open for students to begin the selection process. Students will complete their course selections online using Power School. The process is easy! Just follow the link below to a tutorial that explains the steps.

Portal Registration

2015-2016 Calendar Approved by Regional Board

Now available online here.

A Time to Plan

New Course Offerings to Consider for 2015-2016

At its most recent meeting, the Region 1 Board of Education approved several new courses for the 2015-2016 school year. Environmental History, Visual Storytelling, and UConn ECE Introduction to American Politics are included in the Course of Studies Guide 15-16, now available on the Guidance Department Homepage. Environmental History pairs Agricultural Education content with History/Social Studies, and Visual Storytelling combines Art with English. The UConn ECE course joins the US History Course as a college course that is taught on the HVRHS campus, but which offers UConn college credit upon successful completion of the course. Check out these and many other exciting offerings as you prepare to select courses for next year!

On a Roll!

HVRHS Earns High Marks from College Board

Housatonic Valley was recently named to the fifth annual Advanced Placement Honor Roll. According to the College Board (the governing organization for AP), schools on the Honor Roll meet the following criteria:

  • Increased participation/access to AP by at least 4 percent in large districts, at least 6 percent in medium districts, and at least 11 percent in small districts;
  • Increased or maintained the percentage of exams taken by African American, Hispanic/Latino, and American Indian/Alaska Native students, and;
  • Improved performance levels when comparing the percentage of students in 2014 scoring a 3 or higher to those in 2012, unless the district has already attained a performance level at which more than 70 percent of its AP students are scoring a 3 or higher.

The Advanced Placement (AP) Tests are intensive exams that are given at the end of an AP course in high school. While they measure achievement in a specific subject, they also reflect the district’s efforts to prepare students for college-level courses. Students at HVRHS have the option of taking AP courses in Calculus, Statistics, Biology, and English. Congratulations to students and teachers for all of your efforts that made this possible.

Counselor Connection Now Available

Fall 2014 Edition Online

Have questions about college applications, standardized testing, or what is happening with the freshman class these days? Take a look at The Counselor Connection, the Guidance Department newsletter, for the latest updates. Click here to read it.

Apply for 21st Century Fund Grant

Students, have you always wanted to explore new worlds, climb a mountain, learn Arabic, or make your own guitar, but lack the funds to make it happen?
Teachers, are you eager to bring new opportunities to your students, but there’s no money in the budget to try something new?
Is there an extra curricular program you’d like to see happen at HVRHS that has never been in the school budget?
The 21st Century Fund For HVRHS, Inc. is here to help you. We have helped send kids across the planet to China, and across the country to leadership conferences. We have provided professional development for teachers to try new ideas, and bought cameras and bicycles and high tech equipment for special programs. We have funded teams and clubs and classes.
Go to and find out how to MAKE YOUR DREAM COME TRUE !!!!!!!!

Governor Dan Malloy Addresses the Audience at the 75th Anniversary Celebration.

Governor Dan Malloy Addresses the Audience at the 75th Anniversary Celebration.

Get ‘Em While They’re Hot!

Copies of the 75th Anniversary Yearbook and History Book Available

Looking for a great Christmas or birthday gift for your Mountaineer? Copies of the 75th Anniversary Yearbook are available, as well as the school history, written by Edward M. and Mary T. Kirby, Class of 1945 and Dr. Russell H. Cowrd, Jr., English Teacher 1980-2000. Yearbooks are $65.00, plus $7.00 for shipping, and the History book is $12.00. If you are interested in your own copy, please email Julie Lang @ or call 860-824-5123 Ext 162 to reserve one. 


Let’s Hear It for HVRHS Art Students!

Digital Media Offer New Opportunities for Grads & Current Students Alike

HVRHS students and alumni have experienced a string of successes in recent days that highlight the power of new media to create, share, and discuss art and design. Tyler Heacox, (Class of 2012) currently at Ringling College of Art and Design, won an animation contest conducted by the Baltimore Orioles. His animations, featured above, were chosen to appear on the O’s spring training jumbotron display. Another recent alumnus, Lucia Love (formerly known as Lucia Martin, class of 2006), will be having an opening later this month in NYC at Chashama Gallery space in midtown Manhattan. Click here to view her work. Art appreciation is also alive and well in the work of current student Chris Moore, who had his art criticism blog quoted in a major UK art publication, History Today. Beautiful art and words, Mountaineers!

Student Accident Insurance

Insurance plans are available to all enrolled students for the 2014-2015 school year, including school time coverage and 24 hour coverage, with optional dental benefits also available. Please click on the brochure to learn more:
Student Accident Brochure

To obtain a copy of the instructions for filing a claim or the Accident Claim form please click below:
Claim Filing Instructions

QBE Accident Claim Form

Copies are also available at the high school main office.

Queue Up Your Summer Viewing with HVRHS Videos

Graduation, Civic Life Videos Now Available Online

The Class of 2014 has been preserved for posterity in several online videos that are now available to the public. The Commencement Exercises of June 19 are available on YouTube, and the Civic Life student documentaries, “Grey as Smoke,” and “Breathing Room” are also available. Click on the links to access the videos, and for seniors who would like a DVD copy, just drop off DVDs (DVD+R or DVD-R) at the Main Office along with a name and a phone number, and we will call you when the copy is ready to be picked up.


photo 4Weekend Warriors

HVRHS Students Cover the State with Showcases of their Learning

It was a busy weekend for HVRHS students in our Environmental Science and Civic Rights classes, who roamed from Millerton, NY to Bridgeport, CT to talk about their learning this year. The weekend began with a trip to the Beardsley Zoo for Letitia Garcia-Tripp and members of the Environmental Science class, who attended the Aquarion Company’s Environmental Champion Awards to be honored by Senator Richard Blumenthal and State Commissioner of the Department of Environmental Protection Rob Klee. The award recognized their work to study the impact of and propose a solution to the use of plastic water bottles at the school. Students Henry Yuliano, Christian Umana, and Olivia LaFontan presented the commissioner with a Mountaineers water bottle as an emblem of their work.

IMAG0152The recognition continued at the Millerton Moviehouse on Sunday with a screening of student documentaries from the Civic Rights class. English teacher Damon Osora and Social Studies teacher John Lizzi, along with a number of students, spoke with an audience at the Salisbury Forum about their project, which has been screened at the capitol this week, as well. Their projects covered a range of topics including drug addiction and the school’s breathalyzer policy, and thanks to their work with professional documentary film maker Dominique Lasseur, their work was captured in the highest quality film. Check back here soon for links to the films.

IMG_0946Congratulations to Envirothon

Excellence: an Annual Tradition

The Envirothon teams of Housatonic Valley High School continued their excellence at the state level this past week at the State Envirothon competition and field day held this year at Tolland County Agricultural Center amongst forty-six other public, private and homeschool teams.     The Agriscience Team of Cristian Umana, Patrick Purdy, Emily Sullivan, Sam Weisman and Shannon Paton placed first in the forestry section of the competition and garnered 2nd place overall with a narrow margin of 3 points to the first place Greenstreet Homeschool Cooperative.    The Housatonic Valley High School team comprised of Sam Bradway, Jamie Long, Marina Matsudaira, Chris Moore and Larry Grannan placed fourth overall, just eight points off the first-place score.    Our wildcard team of Juliana Paton, Mari and Eve Cullerton, Kevin Massey, Cody Nettleton and Julian Weisman placed 22nd overall and first overall in a pack of 6 wildcard teams.    The North American theme of sustainable agriculture provided an intriguing platform throughout the year as students explored the three pillars of agriculture:  economic, environmental and social.    Thank you to the entire community for your support to our Envirothon teams.

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