The Names They Are a-Changin’

Our original building at 245  Bent St is now called "the Bent building" instead of "the Lower School"
Our original building at 245 Bent St is now called “the Bent building” instead of “the Lower School” building.

In addition to learning the names of all the new students and faculty, we all will have some new terminology to learn when school starts this fall, ur, later this summer (August 27 is the first day of the 2014-15 school year).

With the addition of a 6th grade, we will now use “middle school” to refer to students in grades 6 through 8. Ninth grade students will join those in grades 10 through 12 to become part of our “high school.” Continue reading “The Names They Are a-Changin’”

It’s a Wrap! End-of-Year Awards & Events

National Honor Society 2014 Grads
National Honor Society 2014 Grads

The 2013-14 school year (our 9th!) wrapped up with a trip to Canobie Lake Park on June 19. Faculty and staff are concluding three days of professional development today, and then it’s officially summer vacation for most CCSC adults — at least until our Summer Academy for all new students begins on Monday, June 30. Summer Academy runs mornings (8:30am -12:30 pm) through Friday, July 25. The first day of the regular school year is Wednesday, August 27. View the 2014015 school calendar.

End-of-year awards:

Amar Ahmad (Achievement 7th grade)
Christiana Sainvil (Commitment 7th grade)
Yishak Ali (Achievement 8th grade)
Maya Reynoso Williams (Commitment 8th grade)
Anne Valbrune (Achievement 9th grade)
Amal Hainstock (Commitment 9th grade)
Christy Felix (Achievement 10th grade)
Jose Robles (Commitment 10th grade)
Peg Nonez (Achievement 11th grade)
Allison Kelly (Commitment 11th grade)

Junior Book Awards:

Shemar Michel (History)
Amira Nwokeji-Iwulal (English)
Beemnet Gebreegziabher (Math)
Isaiah Blanco-Evans (Science)
Claudelyne Bernaus (Literature)
Jesus Robles Garcia (Spanish)

End-of-year photo albums:****

Senor Internship Exhibit Night (photos by Gretchen Ertl)

Graduation (photos by Bethany Versoy)

Field Day


Canobie Lake Park trip

**** Have you liked Community Charter School of Cambridge on Facebook? If not, please do and help us reach 1,000 fans by the time we begin our 10th school year this fall.

Roundtables with Ms. Gerson
Roundtables with Ms. Gerson
Ms. DaSilva at Canobie Lake -- summer dreamin'
Ms. DaSilva at Canobie Lake — summer dreamin’



Thank You Thursday (5/1/14)

Mr. Isaac and Mr. Dineen at Super Secret Fun Day.
Mr. Isaac and Mr. Dineen at Super Secret Fun Day.

Here are this week’s shout-outs for the CCSC values of commitment, citizenship, scholarship and courage. Special shout-outs to everyone who made this year’s Super Secret Fun Day a success. (SSFD was announced during lunch on Wednesday and fun and games took place the place of  last period classes.) Continue reading “Thank You Thursday (5/1/14)”

Crush the MCAS: A Pep Talk

The hallways are hushed today because it is the first (of three) days of the 2014 MCAS tests in English Language Arts for students in 7th, 8th and 10th grade. To psych up their students to “crush” the tests, the CCSC humanities department created this video pep talk. Directed by Mandy Henry, the video features teachers Henry “I can fly!” Seton, Kyle “Figuratively, not literally, fly” Fahsel, Seth “Crush that voice” Pearce, Emily “You know how” Niska, Katie “You own it” Rieser, Dora “Don’t stop believing” Acosta, Ruby Stardrum, Day Farenga, and Harvard intern Fay Alexander along with several older students who have already crushed the MCAS. Casting successful students wasn’t hard: every member of the current 11th and 12th grade classes scored advanced or proficient on their 10th grade ELA MCAS, earning the school a #1 state ranking each year.

a pep talk from Mandy Henry on Vimeo.

And We’re Off!

Caleb Hurst-Hiller, a member of CCSC's founding faculty, begins his 2nd year as head of school.
Caleb Hurst-Hiller, a member of CCSC’s founding faculty, begins his 2nd year as head of school.

Classes started today, and there was a already crowd on the Bent Street sidewalk before our doors officially opened for morning handshakes and greetings at 8 a.m.

Beginning a new school year (our 9th) on the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington and Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s “I Have a Dream Speech” inspires us to work even harder this year to ensure a future of equity and opportunity for all children through high-quality public education.

Welcome back, everyone. We have a lot of hard work ahead, but if we stay true to our C-C-S-C values, we will keep advancing ever closer toward Dr. King’s dream.

Lower School Principal Becki Norris greets the very first student through the doors today. Ms. Norris was a teacher when CCSC opened in 2005.
Lower School Principal Becki Norris greets the very first student through the doors today. Ms. Norris was a teacher when CCSC opened in 2005.




Good Luck to our Harvard SLP Interns

Steve Henderson and Barbara Eghan
Steve Henderson and Barbara Eghan

Last week we said good-bye to our two principal interns from the Harvard Graduate School of Education’s School Leadership Program (SLP), Steve Henderson and Barbara Eghan, both of whom made significant contributions to the CCSC community since joining us last fall. Continue reading “Good Luck to our Harvard SLP Interns”

Reading Suggestions for April Break

Ms. Post helps a student check out a new book.
Ms. Post helps a student check out a new book.

With April vacation coming up next week, CCSC Librarian Barbara Post invites all students to replenish their supply of DEAR books — and to return any books they have finished so they are available for other students.

Ms. Post keeps adding new titles to refresh the collection throughout the year. Here are a few suggestions:

Looking for a powerful teen drama? Sink your teeth into Bait by Alex Sanchez.

Want to make Mr. Seton and Mr. Fahsel smile? Dig into the Roman Mysteries series by Caroline Lawrence (6 new books especially for 7th graders). Continue reading “Reading Suggestions for April Break”

Women Who Inspire Us

Women can inspire young men, too!
Women leaders can inspire young men, too!

At our recent Black History Month celebration guest speaker Kellie Carter Jackson of Harvard challenged the audience to “Name 5” leaders each of the following categories: African Americans, Latino Americans, disabled Americans, Native Americans and Asian Americans. She didn’t include women leaders, however, and had she asked, she might have heard the same handful of names repeated by many. Doubtless Ms. Carter Jackson would have pushed us to go beyond the easy big names (Hillary Clinton, Michelle Obama, Oprah) and to dig deeper. Continue reading “Women Who Inspire Us”

Scrubs for Spirit


March is the Heartbreak Hill of the school year. There is only one day off – and it doesn’t come until the very end of the month – and, with the third round of interim assessments this week and the ELA MCAS coming up, we’ve entered a tough stretch that will test us all right through to the finish line in June. Outside it’s no better, as the veteran New England winter is still putting up a pretty good fight against the rookie spring; there was a sudden splatter of hail right at dismissal time today, and the National Weather Service has issued a winter storm watch for the Boston area tonight. So, it’s a good thing we have a self-appointed spirit captain in Phil Roebuck to keep us smiling on Wednesdays, at least.

More scrubs!
More scrubs!

Today’s spirit theme was “Dress Like the Nurse Day” in honor of CCSC Nurse Pamela Bajada, whose wardrobe of colorful scrubs is the envy of certain faculty and staff, especially those who significant others are in the medical profession, and who wish getting dressed for work took them as little time and thought as putting on a clean pair of scrubs. With so many teachers wearing scrubs today, walking the hallways of CCSC felt like visiting a pediatric hospital, or being on the set of Scrubs. The only thing different in the nurse’s office was that Ms. Bajada dressed in her civvies! (If you see her tomorrow, wish her a happy birthday.)

Can You Name Five?

Kellie Carter Jackson
Kellie Carter Jackson

At this morning’s Black History Month celebration, keynote speaker Kellie Carter Jackson described the “Name 5” game she plays with her students on the first day of class. The challenge of naming five famous people in each of these categories (African Americans, Latino Americans, disabled Americans, Native Americans and Asian Americans) regularly stumps Ms. Carter Jackson’s history students at Harvard, just as it did when she taught at Gonzaga University, but how can she fault them when, too often, history is told by the winners? Continue reading “Can You Name Five?”