NFA World

About all things NFA, and published in the Sunday edition of the Norwich Bulletin, NFA World is a weekly column written by Geoff Serra,  Director of Communications and Public Affairs.  Check back each week for a new posting.

Sunday, August 2, 2015

NFA Graduates 22 in Summer Ceremony

Patrick Kirker, NFA Teacher of the Year, noted that of all his speaking engagements this year, including National Honor Society Induction and 2015 Class Night, summer graduation was his favorite event. Kirker was the graduation speaker July 34, at NFA’s summer graduation ceremony,
Kirker addressed a full crowd of parents, family, friends, and faculty in the Ensemble Room of the Frank Center. Twenty-two students joined NFA’s Class of 2015. Many were present to receive diplomas in a moving ceremony, each proud of the recognition of their hard work, perseverance, and determination. Director of Summer Credit Recovery, Roy Wentworth, and Director of Summer Intercession Bryant Sheldon, also addressed the crowd, praising the students and noting their accomplishment. Head of School David Klein conferred diplomas.
Graduating were Carlos Almonte Polance, Mia Nadine Brown, Samantha Cassady, Sytira Charles, Julia Cooper, Megan Deojay, Monica Dort, Beltzabe Flores, Bernard French, Rohan Hanson, Taenirah Jones, Bryan L-Etoile, Craig Maerkel, Kyle Malavenda, Jennife Moss, Brandon Norton, Amber Ploof, Joshua Ridenour, Brandon Savage, Ariel Thomas, Sinarda Tyler, and Christian Tynan.
Find pictures of the graduation on News & Events on NFA’s website.

NFA Football Players are Lincoln Park Volunteers

Lincoln Park is a non-profit community in Preston of 40, one bedroom apartments for low-income seniors and/or handicapped people. Last Saturday eighteen NFA football players and their coach Jemal Davis spent a day as volunteers scraping, painting, clearing brush, weeding, and working together. They painted benches and picnic tables, and tended the grounds to make the area pleasing and appealing. They also visited with residents and were treated to lunch by one.
Sara Vegilante, Secretary, Board of Commission of the Preston Housing Authority, said “It was a wonderful day,” noting that the players “are all going places, and we wish them a successful 2015 season.”
See a photo of the group on News & Events on NFA’s website.

NFA Registration for Students

Registration for students from each of the middle schools in NFA’s partner communities (Bozrah, Brooklyn, Canterbury, Franklin, Lisbon, Norwich,Preston, Sprague, and Voluntown), was conducted beginning last January when NFA school counselors visited, distributed registration information, forms, and course catalogs. Those student should be registered and all set to attend school in the fall; they should be looking for packets of information in the mail by the middle of next month.
Students relocating to, planning to relocate to an NFA partner community, those planning to transfer to NFA from another high school, students enrolling as private tuition students, or those who were enrolled in an NFA partner community who did not register in the spring to attend NFA for the 2015-16 school year, need to complete the registration process by August 15, 2015, in order to begin classes on the first day of school, August 26, 2015.
All students need the following information:  Proof of residency (lease agreement, mortgage documents or utility bill:, birth certificate (long form); Social Security card; most recent school transcript and all other prior grades; any court documents or notarized letter for change of child custody; and immunization record and last physical. Except for Norwich residents, a residency affidavit completed and signed by the town’s superintendent of schools is required for students from all other partner districts.
Find more information about registration, and access all necessary forms on the website. Click on Admissions – Applying & Registering.

A Hit in LA

Rising senior Connie Ma, 2015 NFA graduate Jeffrey Hynds, and special educator Kathryn Beit have been in Los Angeles at the Generation Unified leadership summit at the Special Olympics World Summer Games.
Chosen through a national competitive application process, they have made their mark both personally, for NFA, and for their project to promote unified culture in all of NFA’s partner districts. A unified culture is one which does not sort and group students by disability; rather, it pairs peers with and without disabilities to learn in classes, compete in athletics, and socialize. The result is an open environment in which all individuals are accepted and respected for their strengths.
Hynds and Ma’s project was rated in the top ten nationally.
Hynds and Ma have had an exciting week meeting and working with people from all over the world. See their selfie with Eric Schriver, son of Special Olympic matriarch Eunice Kennedy Schriver, and more pictures on NFA’s Facebook page. Also see Hynds and Ma on the “GenUin: Special Olympics Social Impact Summit” video on Vimeo at

At Slater:

On view until August 28, see a major retrospective exhibition, Bridge of Light: Artistic Illumination from the Balkans, featuring Bulgarian and American artists who have crossed the bridge between the two countries first established by poet William Meredith. Also, at Slater, attend the William Meredith Award for Poetry, 1 p.m., August 27, in the Atrium.  The award will be given posthumously to Andrew Oerke, who died in 2014.  A true Renaissance man, Oerke, CEO of an environmental foundation, president of a microfinance organization, Peace Corps Director, Golden Gloves boxing champion, and academic, was a poet of great integrity and spiritual authority.

FINAL THOUGHT: Eckhart Tolle says, “You have a treasure within you that is infinitely greater than anything the world can offer.”

Posted by serrag on Sunday August 2, 2015 at 04:21PM
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Since 1856, Norwich Free Academy has adhered to the philosophy of its founder to "return to our hamlets and our homes its priceless freight of youthful minds, enriched by learning, developed by a liberal culture, refined by study of all that is beautiful in nature and art, and prepared for the highest usefulness and the purest happiness"

Founder, John P. Gulliver,
NFA Dedication Ceremony (1856)

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