Page 1 ■ The Bulletin ■ Monday, February 27, 2012

U.S. flag: Full staff

State flag: Full staff


Debate tickets available free Tickets for the Saturday’s U.S. Senate Democratic debate sponsored by The Bulletin will be available to the public beginning today at The Bulletin’s office at 66 Franklin St., Norwich, during normal business hours. Tickets, which will be available through Friday, are free and are required for admittance. The Bulletin is hosting the first formal debate of the 2012 U.S. Senate campaign with the three leading Democrats — former Secretary of the State Susan Bysiewicz, U.S. Rep. Chris Murphy, D-5th District, and state Rep. William Tong, D-Stamford — from 7:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. in Slater auditorium at Norwich Free Academy. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. and no one will be admitted after 7:15 p.m. Bulletin Editorial Page Editor Ray Hackett will moderate the debate. — Ray Hackett


Club to celebrate 25th anniversary

EASTERN CONNECTICUT QUESTIONS? Contact Jim Konrad, executive editor, at (860) 425-4201 or at


Eastford Schools seek 1.5 percent spending increase in 2012-13 budget proposal. B4


Adamowski pushes for more testing “Most districts don’t wait until March to give the CMT and then see how the stuSchoolchildren in Windham dents did,” Adamowski said. will receive more assessments “You do here in Windham.” in the coming school year. According to Special Master Part of the cycle The Connecticut Mastery Steven Adamowski, children in the district receive far fewer as- Test should be part of a cycle sessments during the school of assessments and be the year than the average district. third round of testing a student It’s an issue that is hindering the experiences each year, he said. Assistant Superintendent district’s ability to close the achievement gap and improve Pamela Barker-Jones said the student performance, he said. district is already evaluating By FRANCESCA KEFALAS For The Bulletin

ways to increase assessments without taking too much time away from instruction. She said the district created a team of 18 reading professionals to do reading assessments this year. The testing usually takes about 30 days, she said. The team completed the testing of all elementary school students in slightly fewer than five days. The new method also reduced the interference with regular classroom instruction, Barker-Jones said. “If you are spending too

much time assessing, you are Inside: Read about Windham not spending time instructing,” school district’s new plan for preschool on Page B4. she said.

Former student’s view Nico Gonzalez, a former student in the district who is now working toward his associate degree, said he hopes the district does not put too much weight on assessments. “I don’t think they are a good way to know what someone can do,” Gonzalez said. “Some kids are not mature enough to un-


Rock-a-thon raises funds for Haiti

Town officials seek members to fill vacancies on the Commission on Aging and the new Capital Improvement Committee. Jewett City and Griswold residents interested in serving on either board are asked to contact First Selectman Philip Anthony with a letter of interest, along with a resume or biographical information. Contact Anthony at or send mail to Town Hall, 28 Main St., Jewett City, CT 06351. — Alison Shea


Nominees sought for volunteer honor Northeast Communities Against Substance Abuse is distributing nomination forms for the 19th annual Volunteer with Youth Awards. The award is given to an individual adult or couple from each of NECASA’s 21 towns for their volunteer work with youth. Nomination forms for The Volunteer with Youth Award can be downloaded directly from the NECASA website at Deadline for submissions is 4 p.m. March 30. — John Penney

Parents praise plan to stagger school buses 2 out of 18 vehicles would be eliminated By ALISON SHEA (860) 425-4256

A new money-saving school bus plan was greeted in Griswold with a much warmer reception Thursday night than busing changes proposed in December. A small crowd gave its approval to a plan that would ensure that all children who want to ride a school bus can.

Money-saving move


From left, St. Andrew Church Life Teen members Kaylie Roux, 17, Luke Lamarre, 16, and Rachel DeLuca, 17, update the donation goal chart for the Rock-a-thon nine hours into the event Saturday at the Colchester church.


Members sought for town boards

derstand the tests.” Gonzalez said he did not understand until he went to high school how important his education was and he struggles with some classes because of that. He agreed that more preparations for the tests is important. “We didn’t study for the test until the week before,” he said.


The Rotary Club of Ledyard will celebrate its 25th anniversary with a dinner/dance on St. Patrick’s Day, March 17. The event will begin at 6:30 p.m. at St. David Episcopal Church in Gales Ferry. It is a fundraiser for the Wesley J. Johnson Sr. Memorial Scholarship Fund. Seating is limited to 100. For more information, visit The Rotary Club is also accepting applications for the $1,000 Johnson Scholarship. The application deadline is April 1. Questions about the scholarship can be directed to state Rep. Tom Reynolds, D-Ledyard, who is chairing the selection committee. To contact him, send email to or call (860) 464-0074. — James Mosher


Teens take part in 24-hour soiree at St. Andrew By the numbers

By ELEANOR JOYCE For The Bulletin

Nearly 80 teens watched movies, played board games, performed skits, ate meals and attended Mass as part of the annual Rock-a-thon Saturday at St. Andrew Church. The 24-hour soiree, which started at 10 a.m. Saturday, was a reward for the members of the Life Teen High School Youth Ministry and the eighth-grade confirmation class, who raised funds for the Haitian Health Foundation. Youth members had to raise at least $100 each to participate in the all-night St. Andrew Church Life Teen High School Youth party, according to Carol Ministry members and eighth-grade confirmation See ROCK-A-THON, B2

class members participate in a Zumba session nine hours after the start of the Rock-a-thon Saturday.

hours: Length of the Rock-a-thon

24 80 $29K $28K $100 $735

Number of teens who participated This year’s goal Funds raised last year

Minimum amount needed per student to participate Amount brought in by the top student fundraiser

Under acting Superintendent John DiIorio’s plan, the district would eliminate two of its 18 buses — saving at least $100,000, before the costs of diesel fuel and maintenance — by using a staggered busing system. The district would send out 16 buses to all parts of town each morning, except the Jewett City borough. The first two buses to get in would drop off their students, then go out and pick up students in the borough. In the afternoon, two buses would drop off borough students first, then come back and do runs in the rest of town.

The original plan The hearing on the new plan Thursday came two months after district officials announced a different plan to eliminate two buses that had parents up in arms. That plan would have had the district enforce its existing, 14-year-old walker policy, which does not assign buses to elementary school children who live within one mile of school — 1.5 miles for middle schoolers and two miles for high schoolers. See SCHOOL BUSES, B2


— Compiled by Ryan Blessing

Colchester dancer, 24, joins professional company on tour In the news: Genna Baroni, of Colchester, has joined Company E, a Washington, D.C., dance company embarking on a collaboration with choreographers from Israel called “Next: Israel.”

Genna Baroni Age 24 Hometown Colchester

About the program: Presented by the Washington Performing Arts Society, the Embassy of Israel and the Shakespeare Theatre Company, “Next: Israel” is the inaugural program by Company E in a series of concerts cele-

brating the work of artists nation-by-nation. The company performed in Washington on Saturday and now is on tour. Founder and Executive Director Paul Gordon Emerson invited Baroni to join the company. Background: Baroni, 24, has been dancing since she was 6 or 7 years old. She started dancing at Doreen’s Dance Studio in Colchester. Owner Doreen Freeman was one of the most encouraging and support-

ive teachers in her life, Baroni said. Another was Jacqueline Anderson, of Haddam, who has a strong ballet background. Baroni also trained at Eastern Connecticut Ballet with several teachers. She received a degree in dance from the University of the Arts in Philadelphia and then moved to New York City to follow her dream and work on her craft. At Christmas, she was offered a six-month contract to work with Company E. She began Jan. 9.

Quotable: “The work we get to do is amazing. It’s with a very well-known choreographer who I’d never thought I’d get to work with. I’m very fortunate to have this opportunity.”

Note to readers Do you know a newsmaker? Email information to or call (860) 425-4227.


A story from The Bulletin, 2-27-12, on Genna Baroni joining Company E.


A story from The Bulletin, 2-27-12, on Genna Baroni joining Company E.