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Phillips Academy • Andover High School • Lawrence Schools

Phillips Academy • Andover High School • Lawrence Schools

Winter 2012 Newsletter

Lawrence by the Numbers: Making the Case for PALS As one of New England’s poorest cities, Lawrence struggles to raise healthy, safe children and provide a range of opportunities in its public schools. PALS provides summer and school-year supplementary educational programming for Lawrence middle-schoolers that aims to improve their academic skills, increase their self-confidence, and encourage talented and able students to apply to honors classes at Lawrence High School or independent high schools, and ultimately go on to college.


of students qualify for full or partial lunch subsidies


of 9th-graders graduate from high school, the lowest rate in Massachusetts


of the city population does not speak English as its first language


of students are Hispanic or Latino, groups with the state’s highest dropout rates (Source: Essex County Community Foundation)

Students Teaching Students Is Our Winning Model


s I look back over the program’s history, I am reminded of one of the most—if not the most— important ingredients of our students’ growth and learning at PALS: the teaching and mentoring by our teacher interns, who are slightly older than PALS students. It is their hard work and commitment— TOM CONE and the ratio of students to Director, PALS interns (usually two students to one intern)—that make PALS such a successful program. The teaching, mentoring, and role modeling that takes place during four weeks in these small settings is extremely personal and powerful. As one eighth-grade student wrote to her math intern at the end of last summer, “Thank you so much for the effort you put into teaching me. I’ll never forget the amount of patience you’ve used on me.” I am frequently asked how I select the interns. I strive to identify, recruit, and hire students in their last two years of high school or in their first two years in college. They must meet at least three of the four following general criteria: 1. Interns must either attend or have graduated from high schools in the greater Lawrence area (e.g., Lawrence High School, Andover High School, Central Catholic High School, The Governor’s Academy, Noble and Greenough School, or Phillips Academy). Coming from the area, they have personal experiences with the high schools our PALS students might attend. The majority of interns come from Andover High School, Central Catholic High School, and Phillips Academy because most are volunteer teachers in “Winter PALS” (a year-round effort) and have shown their talents as teachers and mentors.


2. Interns may be successful PALS alums. I hire several PALS alumni every year, and they serve as especially good role models and guides on how to prosper in middle school and how to carefully consider high school choices. 3. I look for older students who are academically outstanding and show high motivation in their schools. This will ensure a depth of understanding of material that often has to be taught in multiple ways to a diverse group of students. We do not all learn the same way! Young people who are imaginative, resourceful, and active learners themselves can create an exciting environment for teaching and coaching PALS students. 4. Lastly and perhaps most important, interns are chosen only if I believe that they are also “kid-friendly.” They have to enjoy the company of younger children, be interested in them beyond initial casual conversations, and eagerly seek them out in nonstructured times— such as walking to sports or eating lunch together. A great amount of mentoring can occur during these relaxed encounters! Many interns return for a second and sometimes a third summer. The returning interns also are very helpful in training the new recruits. Hiring teacher interns is a “win-win” situation!



The four-week summer session begins every weekday morning when Director Tom Cone travels by bus to the homes of all students to pick them up. PALS students are assigned to specific teachers and teacher interns for the entire summer, which builds strong bonds and assures the continuity of teaching/learning.

From mid-September through May, PALS works with the same students who attended the summer session. Students’ learning and motivation are reinforced, and challenges they face at their regular schools are addressed. The winter teachers, approximately 35 students from PA and Andover High School, dedicate two afternoons a week to PALS.

Typical Day

On Tuesday afternoons, the focus of PALS sessions is Language Arts and Math. Wednesday activities, which focus on enrichment, include:

8:30–9 a.m.

Staff meeting/planning for each student before arrival 9–10:25 a.m. Language Arts/discuss To Kill a Mockingbird, write autobiographies 10:25–11:30 a.m. Math/small groups with 2:1 student/teacher intern ratio 11:30 a.m. Snacks and sports activities or music 12:20 p.m. Lunch at Paresky Commons 1–1:25 p.m. Chess, computers, volleyball, or animal care 1:30–2:50 p.m. Options: Girl Talk, career journals, chess, science investigation, orienteering, or interviewing skills; educational field trips (i.e., Museum of Science, Pfizer Inc.)

Parents of rising eighth-graders also meet with PALS staff to discuss options for high school, including finances. Informal “bus stop chats” and telephone calls assure that PALS stays connected with families. A family picnic celebrates the conclusion of the program.

• Preparing personal essays and high school applications in PA’s Computer Center • Visiting PA’s Peabody Museum of Archaeology • Doing community service projects at the Academy Manor Nursing Home • Participating in mock interviews and discussions with admission officers from PA and other private schools • Engaging in outdoor adventure activities (adapted from Outward Bound) with PA students • Preparing a personal photographic essay project After the students leave, the interns remain at PA to plan the following week’s activities and lessons and to practice teaching.

Established in 1988, PALS is a two-year, year-round program that provides academic enrichment, study skills, and learning strategies for Lawrence middleschool students and assists them with the high school application process. At the same time, PALS provides a unique opportunity for Phillips Academy and Andover High School students to work side by side as mentors and teachers, supported by a carefully planned curriculum and experienced, qualified adults. PALS is one of Phillips Academy’s four educational outreach programs that help fulfill the school’s historic non sibi mission to serve the public interest.

“Notre Dame has a total of 17 students who are PALS graduates. These students make a significant impact on the culture and academic atmosphere at our high school. ” —Dr. Thomas Ryan Principal, Notre Dame High School

The “PALS” name is derived from the key partners in this program: Phillips Academy, Andover High School, and the Lawrence Schools.


Highlights of Success Colleges attended by PALS students, 1988–2011 Amherst College Anna Maria College Bentley University Boston College Boston University Bridgewater State College Brown University College of the Holy Cross

High Schools attended by PALS students, 1988–2011 Academy of Notre Dame Andover High School Austin Preparatory School Boston Arts Academy “You have changed my future, my life, and my perspective on

Central Catholic High School Dorchester High School

the world. I thank you for this

Essex Agricultural and Technical High School

and will always be in your debt.”

Georgetown High School

—José Taveras, PALS 2011 St. John’s Prep

Greater Lawrence Technical School Lawrence High School Masconomet Regional High School Methuen High School Notre Dame High School Noble and Greenough School Phillips Academy Presentation of Mary Academy St. John’s Preparatory School


Dartmouth College Emmanuel College Fairfield University Florida Institute of Technology Gordon College Massachusetts College of Art Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences Massachusetts Institute of Technology Merrimack College Miami Industrial College of Arts and Science Norfolk State University Quinnipiac University Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute Saint Anselm College Salem State University Suffolk University Union College University of Massachusetts–Amherst University of Massachusetts–Boston University of Massachusetts–Lowell University of Rhode Island Worcester State College


Where Are They Now? Class of 2007

How did our 2007 graduating eighth-graders fare in high school and college? The facts speak for themselves! Jeannette Arias  Graduated from Central Catholic High School; received Olivia Howell/Adelante and Montagne Scholarships Currently attending University of Massachusetts–Lowell Isayra Coca  Graduated from Lawrence High School of Math, Science and Technology; received Adelante Scholarship Currently attending University of Massachusetts–Boston Jennie Davila  Graduated from Central Catholic High School; received Montagne Scholarship Currently attending Northern Essex Community College Jenitza DeJesus  Attended Lawrence High School in Honors program

Andres Figueroa  Graduated from Masconomet High School; participated in ABC Program Currently attending Westfield State University Karolina Hernandez  Graduated from Central Catholic High School; received Adelante Scholarship Currently attending University of Massachusetts–Dartmouth Luis Hernandez   Graduated from Lawrence High School with Honors Currently attending Bentley University Angela Lynch  Graduated from Lawrence High School with Honors Moved to Georgia Kate Morris  Graduated from Phillips Academy Currently attending Hampshire College Shailene Nunez  Graduated from Central Catholic High School Currently attending University of Massachusetts–Lowell

Iliana Rivera   Graduated from Lawrence High School with Honors Yashana Rivera   Graduated from Notre Dame High School Currently attending St. Anselm College Keyla Rodriguez  Graduated from Lawrence High School Currently attending College of the Holy Cross Luis Spraus Graduated from St. John’s Preparatory School Currently attending Merrimack College Carlos Tanuz Graduated from St. John’s Preparatory School Currently attending University of Rhode Island Sharrie Volpe Graduated from Essex Agricultural and Technical High School Currently attending Merrimack College

“PALS is an amazing program that is extremely beneficial to our students.The program and its staff are truly dedicated to helping our students see there is a successful and bright future ahead.” —Pete LeFebre, Principal, Parthum Middle School


Our Recent Graduates

Class of 2011

The 17 eighth-graders who graduated from PALS in summer 2011 are now enrolled in various high schools. Emily Castillo  Lawrence High School for Math, Science and Technology Romeo Cayabyab  Notre Dame High School Rebeca Cruz  Lawrence High School Ruben Fernandez  Lawrence High School John Francis  Presentation of Mary Academy

Jeanmerli Gonzalez  Central Catholic High School Received Adelante and Montagne Scholarships

Samson Rios  Central Catholic High School Received Adelante and Montagne Scholarships

William Lacey  Lawrence High School

Anarianny Rodriguez  Notre Dame High School Received Adelante Scholarship

Ruth Martinez  Central Catholic High School Received Adelante and Montagne Scholarships Arcadia Morales  Notre Dame High School Ashlee Nash  Notre Dame High School Rubel Pena  Lawrence High School

José Taveras  St. John’s Preparatory School Jennifer Tran  Central Catholic High School Received Adelante Scholarship Annie Vargas  Presentation of Mary Academy Received Presentation of Mary Academy Scholarship

Lakeysha Periera  Lawrence High School for Math, Science and Technology 7

2011 Summer Staff “I just want to thank you for giving me the opportunity to work at PALS this summer. I had a great time both teaching and hanging out with the kids. I even learned a few things myself. This program really showed me how big an impact I can make on someone’s life.” —Brian Hanafin 2011 Intern

Haritha Pula Graduate of Phillips Academy Attending Rice University Brian Hanafin Senior at Phillips Academy Jeannette Arias Graduate of Central Catholic High School Attending University of Massachusetts–Lowell Michael Buciuman-Coman Graduate of Andover High School Attending University of Massachusetts–Amherst Margaret Finch Graduate of Phillips Academy Attending Oberlin College Hope Fried Graduate of The Governor’s Academy Attending Smith College Ziwe Fumudoh Graduate of Phillips Academy Attending Northwestern University 8

Naveen Kanthavelan Graduate of Andover High School Attending Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute Iha Kaul Graduate of Andover High School Attending Cornell University Luz Lopez Senior at Phillips Academy Kenisha McFadden Senior at Noble and Greenough School Kate Morris Graduate of Phillips Academy Attending Hampshire College Shailene Nunez Graduate of Central Catholic High School Attending University of Massachusetts–Lowell

Melissa Ragonese Graduate of Andover High School Attending Columbia University Kevin Roberge Graduate of Andover High School Attending University of Massachusetts–Amherst Aram Shrestinian Graduate of Phillips Academy Attending Cornell University Carlos Tanuz Graduate of St. John’s Preparatory School Attending University of Rhode Island Andrew Townson Graduate of Phillips Academy Attending Johns Hopkins University Joe Wilkin Graduate of Phillips Academy Attending University of New Hampshire

Teach One, Reach One


arlos Tanuz is part of the rich cultural melding that is the heart and soul of Lawrence. His parents are of Spanish heritage—his father was born in the Dominican Republic—but his Lebanese grandfather, Tanuz says, was “one hundred percent Arab.”

CARLOS TANUZ PALS Alumnus & 2011 Intern University of Rhode Island

A PALS student at the Parthum School for two years and at Phillips Academy for a summer, Tanuz went on to graduate from St. John’s Prep in Danvers, Mass., in May 2011. He is now enrolled in a six-year doctoral program in pharmacy at the University of Rhode Island. Tanuz, a math and chemistry whiz, taught eighth-grade math to PALS students last summer. He says his teaching philosophy is informed by

the adage “teach one, reach one.” He knows the exhilaration himself of being “reached” as a youngster in the PALS program, and, he says, it was time to pay back as a summer intern. “I try to motivate students, try to have a positive influence on their lives,” he says of his peda­ gogical approach. His supervisor, master teacher Naveen Kanthavelan, agrees: “Carlos has such an infectious personality and charming enthusiasm, even unexcited kids got pumped up to do math.” “PALS gave me a great opportunity,” Tanuz says. “I wouldn’t have known about St. John’s Prep were it not for PALS.”

Valuing Students and Their Ideas


ast summer was Hope Fried’s third in the PALS program as a teacher of seventh- and eighth-grade English. Her “style” of delving into To Kill a Mockingbird, she explains, was a new experience for her students: instead of a written test, there was a discussion and analysis of theme, concept, and language. “They were reticent initially,” says Fried, “but as I guided them through discussions, they got into it; they appreciated being treated like high school students and that their ideas were valuable.”

When she first came on board as an intern three years ago, Fried says she thought it might be “a great summer job.” It turned out to be just that—but far more rewarding. Master teacher Alix Driscoll calls Fried’s teaching of the acclaimed Harper Lee novel “masterful,” and praised her lessons in high-level writing skills and the enthusiasm she conveyed to her students. Fried is an art history major at Smith College.

HOPE FRIED 2011 PALS Intern Smith College 9

The Art of the Intern


ix years ago, the assistant principal at South Lawrence East Middle School selected three bright, motivated seventhgraders for the PALS program. One of them was Kate Morris.

KATE MORRIS PALS Alumna & 2011 Intern Hampshire College

“I am so sad to leave PALS, but I will come back to be an intern in the future.” —Gustavo Lopez Parthum School eighth-grader


After successfully completing the eighth-grade summer program, Morris was encouraged to apply to Phillips Academy and was accepted. She says it took time for everything to mesh, but, true to expectations, she thrived, especially in her first love, art. She was able to explore several artistic disciplines at the Academy, including painting, printmaking, and sculpture—and now studies illustration and printmaking at Hampshire College.

Last summer was Morris’s first experience as a PALS intern; she taught seventh-grade language arts. She was particularly gratified when, after the release of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part 2, one of her students borrowed the book—and ended up reading it and the entire series throughout the July session. “Kate’s genuine passion for what she was teaching always shined through,” says her master teacher Iha Kaul, adding, “She even brought in her art portfolio to show the students, which inspired some to try their hands at drawing. Kate’s strength lies in her ability to bring forth what she cares about and to help inspire the people around her.”

“Each day PALS teachers gave me their time and patience and helped me expand my mind. I have now succeeded, and you helped show me the way. Thank you.” —Gracemarie Perez PALS 1994, Corrections Officer, Massachusetts Department of Correction


Our Generous Donors We gratefully acknowledge our 2010–2011 donors, whose generous contributions once again supported 100 percent of the PALS operating budget. Your investment in deserving youngsters in Lawrence, Massachusetts, nourishes vital hope for the future. The opportunities you provide and the doors they open for so many will have a lasting impact.

Corporations, Foundations, and Group Donors Peggy Corbett Memorial Fund

Josephine G. Russell Trust

Charles E. Foisy & Florida C.A. Foisy Foundation

Artemas W. Stearns Trust

Greater Lawrence Summer Fund Edward S. & Winifred G. Moseley Foundation

Abbot and Dorothy H. Stevens Foundations Waldo Trust

Individual Donors Fernando R. Alonso

Elinor Cahill Georgopulo

Sharyn Bahn

Matthew P. Kahn

Ray & Janet Benvenuti

SukHee C. Kim

Angelina Calobrisi

Marianna Kleyman

Ellinor Parnes Campbell

Durgesh A. Kudchadkar

Nancy Rogal Cohen

Richard M. Leary

Rebecca Stewart Dann

Louise J. Morse

Newsletter Editors: Sharyn Bahn, Jill Clerkin

Amy Rogers Dittrich

Daniel & Elizabeth Reardon

Mr. & Mrs. John J. Driscoll

Dr. & Mrs. Robert Smallridge

Contributing Writers: Tom Cone, Alix Driscoll, Paula Trespas

Helen M. Eccles

Jesenia Tejada

Graphic Designer: Anne Marino

Mr. & Mrs. George H. Edmonds

Sylvia L. Thayer & J. Philip Zaeder

Dacone A. Elliott

Kristen M. Townson

Natalie M. Exner

Jeff C. Woodhead

Alan F. French

Anonymous (1)

PALS Director: Tom Cone PALS Master Teachers: Roxy Barry, Alix Driscoll

Photographers: Tom Cone, Michael Malyszko, Gil Talbot

Gifts-in-Kind Melissa Dolan: stuffed animals Lawrence Public Schools: transportation support

180 Main Street Andover, Mass. 01810-4161 978-749-4000

PALS Winter 2012 Newsletter  

PALS Winter 2012 Newsletter

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