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Showing posts from September, 2015

Earning a high school equivalency certificate

The HiSET gives adults and youth (ages 16 & 17) an opportunity to demonstrate their academic skills and earn the NH High School Equivalency Certificate, awarded by the NH Department of Education.

The minimum age to take the HiSET is 16. It is required that students under 18 be enrolled in school and successfully pass the Official HiSET Practice Test.To take the official HiSET battery, permission must be granted by the school superintendent, principal, or high school designee.The HiSET is approximately an 8-hour test and is given over two days. The test measures competency in science, writing, math, social studies, and reading. The High School Equivalency Testing Center in Manchester offers paper-based testing.
Preparing for the HiSET
The High School Equivalency Testing Center in Manchester is located at:
Manchester West High School, 9 Notre Dame Ave.

The required Official Practice Test for students under 18 is given free of charge by appointment.
Please contact your Guidance Counse…

Khan Academy offers FREE official SAT practice test, Practice online - anywhere, anytime!

Khan Academy offers a FREE official SAT practice test. Practice online - anywhere, anytime! VISIT:

Community partnership encourages students to "make the grade"

A successful community partnership continues with the announcement of the 2015-16 “Make the Grade” program. Together, the Office of the Mayor, the Manchester School District and AutoFair unveiled at city high schools the initiative that recognizes academic achievements. “Make the Grade,” a public-private partnership between the City of Manchester, AutoFair, NTB Bank, Manchester School District and the New Hampshire Fisher Cats, also enhances the spirit of community commitment. 

This is the fifth year “Make the Grade” will award a brand new car to a junior or senior high school student who earns honor roll status the first, second and third quarters of the academic year. Next spring, the winning student will receive a 2015 Honda Civic. AutoFair brought it to each school today so that students could see for themselves the car that could be theirs.
“The Manchester School District and the City are excited to continue the partnership with Autofair to recognize the accomplishments of our loca…

Elementary band information night: September 30

All prospective fifth grade students and their parents/guardians are invited to a special “Band Demonstration Night” held at West High School. 

At this event, fifth grade students will hear a short performance of the high school marching band, which will be followed by short breakout sessions on particular instruments. 

This event will be held on the West football field on Wednesday, September 30, and will run from 6:15 p.m.-7:30 p.m.

Smarter Balanced data to be released statewide in November

Student and school scores from the 2015 spring administration of the Smarter Balanced assessment will be available to parents and the public on November 12, 2015, according to Manchester School District’s Superintendent Debra Livingston. Staff at the SAU will soon be reviewing the data and preparing instructional materials for principals and teachers to use in order to interpret and make the best use of the data.
Students across the district in grades three through eight and grade eleven took the assessment last spring. Principals will have the results later this week and teachers will begin reviewing the information the week of September 28.
“We anticipate a very robust reporting method that will allow our school leaders to make the best use of the information in order to improve what we are doing in the classroom,” said Dr. Livingston. “The assessment, a first of this kind for all students, will be used this year to establish a baseline of achievement. We are eager to have the convers…

Register now for adult and community learning courses!

If you think you know what adult education is, take a look at what Manchester has to offer. Manchester Adult and Community Learning is still accepting new students. Earning credit in courses such as economics, biology and algebra to achieve a traditional high school diploma is an option, as well as language classes for students who don’t speak English. But several new programs take an interesting approach to the standards, and they’re open to anyone in the community who want to sign up.

“Forbidden Fiction” is an English course focusing on literature previously banned or challenged in schools. The class meets on Tuesday nights. Wednesday night’s “Creative Non-fiction” will introduce students to memoirs and other ways books engage readers with information. “The Untouchables,” also meeting on Wednesdays, investigates the most infamous criminals in American history. Conversational Spanish and a course on classroom-focused Microsoft applications round out the offerings for this school yea…

Parker-Varney preschool teacher named 2016 NH Teacher of the Year

The New Hampshire Department of Education has announced that Ashley Preston, preschool teacher at Parker-Varney Elementary School, is the 2016 New Hampshire Teacher of the Year.

Preston was chosen from a large group of talented and dedicated educators in the state. The selection committee recognized her ability to help her young students be curious, critical thinkers and problem solvers.

"Preschool students are often underestimated, and I feel fortunate that I can be their voice, help them gain the recognition they deserve, and prove their learning is valuable," Preston wrote in the application.

The surprise announcement was made during a school assembly, which Preston believed was about leadership. Little did she know that her parents, brothers, daughter and other family members were in the audience, waiting to watch her accept a prestigious award. School district administrators, board of school committee members, state board of education officials, city aldermen, and Mayo…

Video updates for kindergarten readiness

Parents looking for resources that will help them let their young children practice some academic skills will find our kindergarten readiness videos helpful.

We've just added several to the "Ready, Set. . .Kindergarten!" page of this site. Thank you to the teachers at Parker-Varney Elementary School for contributing to our series!

Health officials identify positive test result for West Nile Virus

The  New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS)  is  announcing  that  a batch of mosquitoes has tested positive for West  Nile  Virus  (WNV)  recently from the city of Manchester. This is the first  mosquito  batch  found to be positive so far this year and the first positive  test result of the season. 

WNV, along with Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE), are arboviruses that are transmitted from the bite of an infected mosquito. WNV was first identified in  New Hampshire in August of 2000. The Public Health Lab has tested 3,048 mosquito batches, two animals, and 46 people so far this season for WNV and EEE.  There have been no positive tests for EEE yet this year.

Residents and visitors to New Hampshire should protect themselves and their family  members  by using an effective mosquito repellant that contains 30% DEET,  wearing  long sleeves and pants at dawn and dusk when mosquitoes are most  active,  and  removing  standing  water  from  around  your  home  so mosqu…

Luke Capistran 5K Run / 3K Walk is Saturday, Oct. 3

Walk or Run for a good cause! 

The first 50 Manchester School District Employees who register through the link below will have their cost covered for the Luke Capistran Memorial 5K run and 3K walk.

Saturday, October 3 at 10:00am  Derryfield Park, Bridge Street, Manchester, NH

All proceeds go to the Luke Capistran Scholarship Fund which provides scholarships for students to attend summer camp.

New Wilson School principal named

The staff and students of Henry Wilson Elementary School did not have to look far for their new leader. Polly Golden, who has begun her role as principal immediately, was the director of federal projects and professional development for Manchester School District.
Prior to coming to Manchester in 2012, Golden was principal at Milton Elementary School in Milton, New Hampshire. She has worked closely with Wilson and other elementary schools in the city which receive federal funding for programs such as Title I, School Improvement Grants, and priority school status.
“I am thrilled to be part of the Wilson team in this position,” said Golden. “There is so much learning to celebrate, and the commitment to continued success among everyone in the Wilson community is undeniable.”

Open House dates and times

Elementary Schools


Monday, September 14, 2015

6:00-7:00 pmBeech Street Academy 1 Monday, September 21, 20156:00-7:00 pmAcademy 2 Tuesday, September 22, 20156:00-7:00 pmAcademy 3 Wednesday, September 23, 20156:00-7:00 pmAcademy 4&5 Thursday, September 24, 20156:00-7:00 pmGossler Tuesday, September 22, 20156:00-7:00 pmGreen Acres Thursday, September 11, 20156:30-7:30 pmHallsville Tuesday, September 22, 20156:00-7:00 pmHighland-Goffe’s FallsThursday, September 3, 2015Grades K-25:45-6:30 pmGrades 3-56:45-7:30 pmJewett Street Tuesday, September 29, 20156:00-7:00 pmMcDonough Tuesday, September 23, 20156:30-7:30 pmNorthwestWednesday, September 16, 20156:00-7:00 pmParker-VarneyThursday, September 24, 20156:00-7:30 pmSmyth RoadThursday, September 17, 20156:30-8:30 pmWebster Wednesday, September 23, 20156:30-8:00 pmWestonThursday, September 17, 20156:30-7:00 pm  K-27:00-7:30 pm  3-5WilsonThursday, September 17, 20156:00-7:00 pmMiddle SchoolsHillside Middle Thursday, September 24…

REMINDER: No school on September 15

Don't forget that school is closed on Tuesday, September 15! 

It is a professional development workshop day for teachers and city primary election day.

Memorial High School remembers 9/11

As the city, state and nation reflect on the events of September 11, 2001, Memorial High School hosted a special assembly to remember the attacks on America. Manchester School District wants to thank Mrs. Michaud and her students for planning such a moving tribute to the lives lost and those who lived through it.

One special portion of the program included a letter addressed to the students of Manchester and our community from Laura Ogonowski, daughter of American Airlines flight 11 pilot, John Ogonowski. It was read out loud during today's assembly, and we thank Laura for sharing her experience.

"Thank you all for gathering to reflect and remember all of those who were killed on September 11, 2001. I wish that I could be there to share my story with you today, however I am in Boston attending 9/11 commemorations with my family as I do each year. As you know, I lost my father, Captain John Ogonowski who was the captain of American Airlines Flight #11, the first plane to hit the…

Schools get ready to launch 2015-16 FIRST Junior STEAM Ahead

FIRST Junior STEAM Ahead is gearing up for the new school year! In 2015-16, the fourth grade classes of seven schools are participating:

Beech Street Elementary
Gossler Park Elementary
Green Acres Elementary
Jewett Street Elementary
Northwest Elementary
Parker-Varney Elementary
Wilson Elementary

The weekly sessions focused on building and programming LEGO EV3 robots will begin in each school after their field trips to the SEE Science Center. The remaining seven elementary schools not yet integrating FIRST LEGO League into their curriculum also will visit SEE Science Center this fall. Those schools will be added to the full FIRST Junior STEAM Ahead program next year.

In the meantime, our schools' valuable FLL partner and coach "LEGOman Dan" is telling fourth graders what they can expect in FIRST Junior STEAM Ahead this year, and what it takes to program a robot. Take a look at this demonstration!

Could you program a robot? from Communications Coordinator on Vimeo.

Precautions for extreme heat

With another "extreme heat" day, school nurses and teachers are keeping a close eye on students. The Manchester Health Department has passed on some preventative measures as well as response measures for the potential of heat exhaustion among the student and/or staff population. These materials are from the American Academy of Pediatrics, the Red Cross, and other safety resources. 

Other suggestions for children and adults to beat the heat in school:

*         Place wet paper towels on the back of their neck or under their arm (vessels are close in these areas and thus can help cool the bloodstream a bit)

*         Sit on the cool floor

*         Encourage water breaks

Meet the Wilson Elementary School principal candidates on Thursday

Parents, teachers and interested members of the public will have a chance to meet and hear from the finalists being considered for the top post at Henry Wilson Elementary School. The school district is hosting a community forum to introduce the two candidates and offer an opportunity for the public to ask questions.
The invited candidates are Polly Golden, currently director of federal projects and professional development for Manchester School District; and Chris MacDonald, currently assistant principal at Northwest Elementary School in Manchester since 2008. Prior to coming to Manchester in 2012, Golden was principal at Milton Elementary School in Milton, New Hampshire.
Their experience includes curriculum development and implementation, school improvement initiatives, and educator evaluations. Both Golden and MacDonald were classroom teachers earlier in their careers.
“When we have two strong candidates for a principal position, forums like this have proven to be a wonderful way to f…

Manchester teacher selected as donor's choice

Like many teachers, Michelle Bouchard has discovered that raising funds for specific classroom needs can be done more effectively online. Web sites such as and are designed to provide a way for teachers to make requests for financial contributions toward education resources. Teachers have successfully collected funding to pay for supplies, technology, classroom furniture, and even field trips that would have otherwise busted budgets.

Ms. Bouchard, who teaches first grade at Northwest Elementary School, was surprised to find out that television station FOX25 Boston fully funded her latest DonorsChoose request for colorful card stock and printer ink.

"Purchasing card stock and printer ink will help create colorful center activities that enhance our classroom learning," Ms.Bouchard explained in her online submission. "Having these materials in color and on durable card stock will ensure that the children can use these materials frequen…

MSD Nutrition News

Would you like to hear about school menu updates? Interested in hearing about school nutrition and physical activity initiatives? If so, you will find this information and more on the MSD Nutrition Tips blog. Follow this link:

You can also easily find a link to the MSD Nutrition Tips blog on the main MSD web site at Look for Quick Links > MSD Nutrition Blog. 
In addition to latest updates on School Food and Nutrition you will also find recipes, fun ideas for healthy snacks, activities for kids, and more.

September 22: Opportunity Fair

This valuable event is open to ALL high school students in Manchester,
no matter which school they attend!

A message from MSD and the Greater Manchester Chamber of Commerce

On behalf of the Manchester School District and the business community of the greater Manchester region, we are pleased to invite you to participate in an innovative professional development program – Educator Leadership. This program, entering its third year, seeks to create closer alignment between business and education by providing educators with personal access to business leaders, entrepreneurs and community leaders. Armed with a stronger understanding of business and workforce trends through this program, educators will be able to apply this knowledge in the classroom and help prepare and inform students for careers in high growth industries.

Directed by a Steering Committee, Educator Leadership sessions are held from 3:30-5:45 p.m. once a month until May. Each session focuses on a new industry with presentations by business leaders through lectures and discussions at on-site visits at some of the most innovating and exciting businesses in Manchester. The 2015/2016 curriculum i…