ASD Supports Grieving School Community
By Zoie Haggarty
On December, 14, 2012 in Newtown, CT a shooter decided to take over Sandy Hook Elementary School and harm the little innocent students and adults. The adults tried to protect the little students from the shooter. A young lady, Victoria Soto, who was a teacher told the students to hide in the closet. When the shooter came into the class, the teacher told the shooter, “The kids are in the gym.” But unfortunately, the teacher was killed by the shooter, but she saved several students who were hiding in the closet.
When Alyssa Pecorino found out about the shooting in Newtown. she was shocked, and there were no words to describe it. She didn’t go to the vigil, but she took a silent moment at American School for the Deaf. The Administration decided to have a silent moment, and students also wrote some short statements of support and comments on white and green strips of paper. The administration was completely shocked and wanted to make sure the ASD community is safe. We had counselors available to talk about it for the adults and students who needed to talk. Alyssa said there was a big difference between high school and elementary students in how the administration explained what happened in Newtown. It was not easy to explain it, and the adults tried to explain to them at their levels. They were very sensitive to the age of high school and elementary students.

At ASD, we donated money to UConn and to a fund for Sandy Hook Elementary School. Alyssa said if she was there at that time, the first thing she would do is lockdown and distract the little innocent students from the shooter. At ASD, the administration wants to improve the security. Right now we are requiring new visitor logs so visitors need to sign in before they go in buildings. The portable building will have new entrance security installed as soon as possible, and also we will revise the lockdown procedure that we have been practicing during the lockdown drills.



Students Take ACT Exam
By Morgan Rinehart
ACT is the abbreviation for the American College Test. Juniors and seniors are required to take the ACT test to go to college to get Bachelor’s, Master’s or Associate’s Degrees from their colleges. The ACT exam was given in Brewster Gym on December 4, 2012. Between 20 and 30 students took the ACT exam.
The parts of the ACT exam are English (75 questions), Mathematics (60 questions), Reading (40 questions), and Science (40 questions). The purpose of the test is to check student’s skill and their ability in subjects before planning to go to college or university. College admissions require showing their ACT scores. All across the country, colleges and universities require different ACT scores. GallaudetUniversity requires 14’s in each area, English, Mathematics and Science. NTID requires 15 or 16. Also, hearing universities require 21 and over. Harvard and YaleUniversity require 36 to get in.
The ACT exam is given 2 times a year. Students can prepare for ACT by using ACT prep books, ACT online practice, and specialty classes for ACT prep. Dawn Love, counselor, is responsible for giving the ACT at ASD. Dawn said, “Students improve their scores by studying, reading books or using websites.”

Enjoyable Trip to Meriden Mall
By Karmarie Burgos
About 36 dorm students and staff at ASD took a mall trip after school on December 12, 2012. It was nice for a change to go to a different mall in Meriden. It took only 25 minutes to arrive at the Meriden mall. The group spent about 2½ hours shopping there. Ana Aleman, senior, went with her crew to chill, looking around in new places to hang out. She bought piercing belly jewelry and a vanilla drink.


The boys were the ones to come up with the idea to go to a different mall. Thanks to this new idea, the students and staff enjoyed a fun night out Christmas shopping and eating.
Ana didn’t get the chance to play in the arcade in the mall; they were busy looking into the new stores they hadn’t been in yet. Ana said the activity she enjoyed the most was walking around. The coolest part in the mall was the photo shoot with Santa holding each cute kid in line.



Class of 2013: Ready to Graduate
Each issue will feature senior profiles

By Ana Aleman

Her name is Karmarie Burgos. After graduating on January 23rd from American School for the Deaf, she will be working with her BRS counselor Chris to help her to find a steady job that will earn her a good salary. She will be talking with her uncle about modeling because he’s a local photographer and a designer. She has always wanted to be a model. She doesn’t have to worry about her looks because he is a wonderful freelance make-up artist. He knows how to make her scars disappear as if he works magic. She has not seen many plus- size deaf models in advertisements. She would like to be a role model for other deaf women and girls. She hopes to come back to Homecoming at American School for the Deaf which is like her home. She was raised since her childhood in Cogswell. She has many memories of ASD that won’t fade away. Karmarie will miss students and the nice staff. She has nice memories of chatting with everyone in our school.



His name is Dennis Donis. He will go to work after he graduates this year. He wants to go to community college. He has been here at ASD for 6 years. He moved here when he was 14 years old from Guatemala. His best memories are with his old friends in Guatemala in Mexico and also at the AmericanSchool for the Deaf. His favorite part of being here is the dormitory. He is very excited to graduate from ASD this year. He will be able to come back to the AmericanSchool for the Deaf to see the new building. His favorite staff are Bill Potter and Brendan Ward. He misses the Gallaudet old building where he went to school when he was 14 years old. He is thankful for his education, making new friends, his family and good health. His advice to other students is to be good, positive, study and work hard, and always focus on work.

Her name is Shanice Nixon. After graduating from American School for the Deaf this year, she will go to Northwestern Community College. She has been here at ASD for 7 years. Her best memory ever was in 9th grade because she had never seen deaf people use American Sign Language before and she learned their ASL.
She doesn’t have a favorite staff. She prefers to be herself. She’s not really excited to graduate this year. She will move on with her own life and start a new chapter of life after graduation. She will definitely come back to ASD to see the new building. She is thankful for her education, staff and a coach who encouraged her to improve her attitude, good health and family. She advises other students to set their own goals for their lives in the future.




After graduation, Dazjanique Parker will go to college and work. She has been here at ASD for five years and one month. Her best memory is being on the basketball team for 5 years. Her other favorite memory is being here to see students smiling and socializing. She’s excited to graduate this year, but sometimes she has mixed feelings. She will definitely come back to ASD to see the new building. She knows all the staff here pushed her to do many things and she is thankful for that. She will miss ASD because of the campus and all the memories that happened. She is thankful for American School for the Deaf. Her advice is if you have a dream, chase it. Don’t stop when you get stuck. Struggles happen for a reason. Keep achieving until you make it to the top.



Seniors Host Tigmas Ball – Interview with Ashley Munchgesang
By Brandon Macisco
BM: Who hosted Tigmas Ball?
AM: Senior class.
BM: What time and date?
AM: 7:00pm to 10:00pm on December 20.
BM: Where was the ball in New Gym, Old Gym, or Student Lounge?
AM: Student Lounge.
BM: What was the “theme”?
AM: Tigmas Ball means Winnie the Pooh and Tigger. Seniors love them.
BM: Did you have a dance?
AM: Yes Shanice and Daz were responsible for the music .
BM: Did you have food?
AM: Yes wings, Mexican chips, Swedish meat balls, desserts, veggies and dip.
BM: What kinds of clothes were required?
AM: Mostly nice clothes. No blue jeans.
BM: Admission is $10. If a student can’t afford it, what happens?
AM: He or she can owe after vacation.
BM: Who made the decorations?
AM: All Seniors. We made stars and paws Christmas decorations and added lights.
BM: Did you have prizes?
AM: Yes, each student got a gift (goodie bag). Students who won a game got small tigers or candy or a necklace.



New Students Love ASD
By Ana Aleman, Zoie Haggarty, Morgan Rinehart
New students are so excited to go to a new school in the fall, but at the same time they are nervous, happy, can’t wait to meet new friends, and new teachers. They don’t know what the new style of teaching will be or what to expect staying in the dorm, doing something in the dorm, activities, and going out off campus.

Her name is Amber Dorwish. She is 17 years old and a sophomore at American School for the Deaf. She lives in Brooklyn, New York. She went to Lexington School for the Deaf in Jackson Heights, New York before coming to ASD. She transferred to American School for the Deaf because it has good quality education for her. Also, she did not feel awkward when she first attended our school. She really likes ASD. Our school helped her lot to experience education. Her favorite subject is mathematics. She participates in basketball. Her favorite activities at ASD are games with her friends and hanging out with her friends. The difference between ASD
and her old school is that her old school didn’t help her as much. ASD is willing to help her to make a better world.



Her name is Jenna Giglietti. She’s fifteen years old. She’s in 9th grade at American School for the Deaf. Her favorite subject is reading. She lives in Belchertown, Massachusetts. Before ASD, she went to Clarke School. Her parents made a decision that Jenna could transfer to the deaf school in West Hartford, Connecticut. When she first arrived at ASD, she was feeling awkward. She likes our school because she likes to learn sign language. She will participate in track. The big differences between her old school and our school are that we have swimming, a library and small classrooms.



His name is Tony Medina. He is 17 years old and a sophomore at AmericanSchool for the Deaf. He lives in East Haven, Connecticut. He went to St. Francais De Sales School for the Deaf in Brooklyn, New York and LexingtonSchool for the Deaf in JacksonHeights, New York. He transferred to our school because he felt ASD had a good quality education for him. When he first attended our school, he was awkward and was a quiet person. He likes ASD because of the education. His favorite subjects are English and gym. He participated in basketball, soccer, and track & field. His favorite activities are basketball and spending time with his girlfriend at our school. His old school was difficult because he experienced bullying.



His name is Hunter Oren. He’s 18 years old and he is in 10th grade at American School for the Deaf. He moved here from Lionel Lake, Minnesota. His favorite subjects are English, math and history. He doesn’t participate in any sports at our school. His favorite activity is structured activities. Structured activities provide opportunities to teach students how to participate in activities instead of being isolated with nothing to do. The structured activities that he likes require concentration and details. He went to Austine School for the Deaf before. His mom wanted to move to Connecticut because they wanted to be safe in Connecticut. He felt shy when he first attended our school. He really likes our school because American School for the Deaf is a very cool place. His old school and our school are different because our school provides a better education.



Mizrai Perez is a new student this year; she is 17 years old and in freshmen year of high school. She lives in Stamford, CT. Her old school was in Dominican Republic. The reason why she moved here was because she doesn’t like how hearing people treat her differently. ASD treats her very well, better than her old school. When she moved here to Connecticut and started at AmericanSchool for the Deaf, she wasn’t nervous, and she was so happy. She loved ASD because it is her first time to meet deaf people. Her favorite subject is English. She also participated in basketball this past basketball season and she enjoyed it and had so much fun. Her favorite things to do at ASD are going out to the mall and hanging out with her friends.



His name is Hunter Petit. He is 16 years old and a freshman at American School for the Deaf. He lives in Stratham, New Hampshire known as the birthplace of the famous Lindt chocolates. He went to elementary school near his hometown and Clarke School for the Deaf in Massachusetts for two and a half years. He transferred to American School for the Deaf because It has better education for him. He lives in the dorm. He learned how to communicate in sign language. Also, he visited ASD last year. He likes ASD, but it is far from his hometown in New Hampshire. His favorite subjects are culinary arts, robotics and mathematics. He participates in soccer. His favorite activities at ASD are working-out, playing, drawing and swimming. The difference between ASD and his old school is that ASD has more sign language, more rules and permission for activities. ASD also has more elective courses.

Julissa Platt is also a new student. She is 14 years old and a freshman. She lives in Norwalk, CT. Her old school is in Fanwood, White Plains, New York. When she came to ASD, she was so happy and excited. The reason why she transferred here to ASD from her old school was because ASD had better education than her old school. She did meet new friends and teachers who are friendly, and her teachers explain very clearly, and in detail that’s what she wants. Her favorite subjects are history and English. She will participate in sports such as cheerleadering and volleyball. Her favorite hobbies are going out with her friends to the mall, reading books, and talking with her friends on VP.



Her name is Taimin Rosado. She’s 16 years old and in 10th grade at American School for the Deaf. She lives in Lawrence, Massachusetts. She went to The Learning Center for the Deaf before coming to ASD. She wants a good education program. She didn’t feel awkward when she first attended our school. She felt really normal. She likes American School for the Deaf because she likes structured activities after school that make her feel very comfortable. She enjoys all subjects. She is participating in basketball this year. Her favorite activities are hanging out with friends and chatting with staff. One difference between her 2 schools is that American School for the Deaf has structured activities and The Learning Center for the Deaf doesn’t have it.


New Year’s Resolutions
By Estela Cardosa
Andrea V: I`m glad for a new life with my mom and thank staff for teaching at our school. I am happy with my boyfriend that we are good together and learn together and love our life and earn money.

Anna Andrews: I want to exercise more in 2013.

Daz P.: Graduate high school and be successful.

Donna Wilson: I will be good about exercising 3 times per week.

Ana A.: I promise to become successful and I promise myself to improve my good grades at ASD.

Dennis D.: I promise that I will be a better man and be successful. I will begin my new life.

Hunter P.: I will learn more sign language.

Morgan R.: I will keep up my school work to get my diploma.

Erick R.: My goal is to have better grades than last year. My opinion this New Year is to be better and improve in school and basketball also. My goal is one thousand points for basketball. I have 140 more points to go! I need that because this is my last year. And I hope to do better in school.

Chelsea G. I hope to be safe!

Jose V.: I will want to work, but I don`t know where.

Anna R.: Lose weight. Be more positive - life is too short.

Kayla V.: My goal will be to work on my major in film or forensics. I want to graduate from high school.

Karmarie B. I want to work out and to lose weight. Have a nice future in a safe area and get a job that will pay a lot.




A Global Blog
By Ana Aleman
Arlene Blum began using a blog last summer. She wanted students to write and have an audience. She went to a workshop with Dr. Hannah Dostal. Dr. Dostal talked about how students need to write to improve their skills. Arlene, Bob and Tommy worked together during summer school.
Since the fall, the blog changed and went global. Nobody taught her about blogging. She read the internet and learned by herself. No one can hack on the blog because it is blocked and has protection. Everything needs to be approved first. It has spread around the world already. So far, students and teachers from South Africa, Israel, Italy, Texas, California, and Australia participate on the blog. She thought it was a good way to teach students to communicate with each other and about their culture. Teenagers can communicate and learn from each other. The address is ajoycetb.edublogs.org.
A teacher from Israel suggested that we use Edmodo for videos and for pictures. Arlene does not know who invented Edmodo, but many schools all over the world use it. She thinks it’s a good way to encourage literacy, reading and writing skills. Anyone can participate with a password for Edmodo. We have used it for four months. No one can hack Edmodo. It is a safe way to communicate with teachers and students around the world.



Holt Dorm Hosts Superbowl Party – Interview with Tracey Eaddy
By Danny Lord
DL: When was the Superbowl Party?
TE: On Wednesday, January 30, 2013.

DL: What time?
TE: 7:30 PM to 9:30 PM.

DL: Where was the party?
TE: In the gym.

DL: Who went to the Superbowl Party?
TE: PACES students and core students. Last year and 2 years ago, a lot of students played Superbowl party games.

DL: What kind of food did they have?
TE: Hot dogs and cheese sticks.

DL: What did the students do at the Superbowl Party?
TE: They played football and had a contest for best costume.

DL: Who was responsible for hosting the party?
TE: Me and Carey Mallach.

DL: Did you have prizes?
TE: Yes, we had 2 prizes.



Freestyle Soccer Star at ASD
By Ashley Munchgesang
Walid Radwan is from the United Arab Emirates (UAE). He arrived in the USA to study and improve English. He has special skills in freestyle soccer that looks like break dancing. He learned from his hearing friends and the computer too. He learned freestyle 5 years ago. He loves freestyle because he wants to be famous as the first deaf freestyler because many hearing people do freestyle. And he would like to teach deaf people about freestyle. He practices 4 hours everyday, but has to take break times.

Freestyle has been around for over 1500 years. It began when circus performers and jugglers did fancy moves with a ball. Walid was influenced by 2 French men named Séan Arnaud Garnier and Wassim Benslimane. He fell in love with freestyle because he has enjoyed break dancing with a ball. He hopes to participate in a World Competition like Red Bull Street Style or the World Freestyle Football Open Championship.








































Volume 2 Number 1 December, 2012



First School for the Deaf Constructs Modern Building

By Zoie Haggarty


Every time you take a look from the window of the van as you arrive on campus, you see what big changes are happening in Gallaudet Hall as it turns into a new building. Every day you think of it and really want to know and see inside of this building. But the construction of the new building is messy in a good way because it is going to be built very fast and will be finished by September, 2013.

Edward Peltier, ASD Executive Director, and ASD Board of Directors first thought about renovating the old Gallaudet building. The Health Inspector and Fire Marshall agreed that renovation was needed immediately because the old building no longer met their code. However the school board decided to build a new building instead because the building was falling apart and repairs would cost too much.

The new building will have 25 regular classes, 10 new lab classes, the infirmary and the library. Pre-K to 6th graders and high school students will go to the new Gallaudet building but not JRHS, Quad 1, or PACES. These classes will stay in vocational building.

Mr. Peltier has to attend a meeting every Monday to see if the construction people are meeting their schedule and to see how the construction is going. The new building will cost about $19 million. The school will raise the money through fundraising, financing and the endowment. It is not final if they will be able to preserve the steeple right now. The engineers have to study and see if it will be possible to move and keep the steeple. Some alumni were upset in the beginning but not now because there’s a lot of connection and support for the new building.

The architect team is Tai Soo Kim. The construction company is BBE. The state didn’t pay because we are not a state school; this is a private school for the deaf.

The next project will be the heat plant because there’s a connection to vocational, the gym, and the pool. Mr.Peltier said that the plan is to get all new furniture. He will set up a mockup to see if the teachers will like the furniture, TV, and active board. Mr. Peltier believes that Thomas Gallaudet would approve of the new building because he would want the students to learn in a new and safe environment.

new gally bldg 017.JPG new gally bldg 010.JPG




Welcome to New Staff


This year, ASD welcomed 3 new teachers to the upper school core program and 2 new teachers to the PACES program.

Ms. Kennilynn Burnaugh Kennilynn.JPG

by Estela Cardoso


EC: Where did you work before?
KB: ASD is my first job. I did student teaching in Colorado for 8 weeks with kindergarten and 8 weeks with high school students.
EC: What subjects do you teach at ASD?
KB: I teach four English classes and one health class.
EC: What college did you go to?
KB: University of Northern Colorado
EC: What was your major?
KB: My major was special education for undergraduate. My master`s degree is in deaf education.
EC: Where did you grow up?
KB: I was born and grew up in Wyoming.
EC: Why did you move?
KB: I moved to Connecticut to work at ASD.
EC: What do you do in your free time?
KB: I don`t have too much free time. First year teachers are very busy. But I like scrapbooking because it is creative. Also I am a gymnastics judge.
EC: What ages do you judge?
KB: I judge different ages from 8 to 16 years old. I judge different levels.
EC: Do you judge girls or boys?
KB: I judge girls only.
EC: Tell me about your family.
KB: My mom lives in Wyoming and is a special education teacher. My dad lives in Montana. He is a manager in a bank. I have one brother in college in Montana, and he is a business major. I have one sister in college in Wyoming. Her major is undecided,
EC: Do you have deaf family?
KB: My grandmother lives in Wyoming and has a hearing aid.
EC: Why do you want to work with deaf students?
KB: Teaching is a rewarding job. I like to see students make progress and develop and grow. I get so excited. It is a gift to me. I love learning. Teachers never stop learning.
EC: Are you involved in sports? What is your favorite sport?
KB: I started in gymnastics at age 3. I continued until age 18.
EC: What do you do during your vacation?
KB: Visit family, read novels and relax – I like to sleep in and sit by the fireplace.
EC: When you were a little girl, what was your goal for working?
KB: I always wanted to be a teacher from 3rd grade. In 6th grade I decided to work with deaf students. I started to learn sign language and I loved it.





Dr. Shannon Graham Shannon 002.JPG

By Jovahnna Delvecchio


Dr. Graham was born in Germany. She has some deaf people in her family. She has one sister. She went to an elementary school with a program for deaf students and middle school deaf and hearing mainstream school. She was a day student so she didn’t stay in the dorm. She went to school at Traid High School in a small town in Illinois. Dr. Graham said at that time there was no technology but now we have more technology. She ran track for 4 years. Also, she tried basketball, but she didn’t like it because there were lots of hearing people and only one deaf person, so it was hard to play. But she likes track. She said when
she was a little girl, she wanted to go into space to see the earth.

Dr. Graham went to Gallaudet University in Washington, DC. She has two degrees. One is in biology and one is in education. Before, her job was in Marine Biology. For example, she counted sea turtles and many other sea animals. Later, she began to teach. Dr. Graham taught science and math at Illinois School for the Deaf and Washington School for the Deaf.

She has one hearing aid. Dr. Graham likes it if she can feel the vibration of music. Dr. Graham does not really watch television programs. In her free time, she likes to do research on topics in education. Also, she likes to talk with friends and go to new restaurants to taste different foods. She likes to travel to new areas and also visit her family. She said the deaf community in CT is new for her so she is not involved much yet. Dr. Graham said she enjoys this new ASD experience.


Ms. Joan Hanna Joan.JPG

By Jovahnna Delvecchio


Joan Hanna has worked at ASD for 21 years, but this year, she is a new teacher in the portables in the high school core program. She was born in Meriden, CT. She has no sisters and brothers. Joan is the 4th deaf generation in her family (her parents and grandparents went to ASD). Joan did not go to American School for the Deaf; she went to public school at Maloney High School. In public school she did not understand the teachers, and it was hard to communicate. She did not like high school very much. She said a long time ago, high school was different than now. Before in public school she had no interpreter or notetaker, so she tried to catch what teachers said and she wrote notes. But she often missed what they said when they wrote on the blackboard. She tried her best at listening to what she could hear and also read lips.

In high school Joan was not involved in sports. Instead, she worked at a bowling alley “T Bowl.” She served hamburgers, cokes, etc. She said people there were very nice and she understood their speaking to her. There were also 60 or 70 deaf people there who came to bowl every Friday night.

When she was a little girl, Joan wanted to work in two areas - fixing cars and drafting. When she went to public school, she thought it was unfair because girls had to do cooking and sewing and boys got to fix cars and take drafting, woodworking, and metal shop. She was the only girl in drafting class for 3 years in high school. She learned to fix cars
from her deaf grandfather and friends. After high school, Joan worked in mechanical drafting designing new products for a gun company. When she graduated from high school, she went to college at Gallaudet and St. Joseph College.

Joan and her husband used to own a Dairy Mart Store in West Haven, CT. It was open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. When she first came to ASD, she was an RC. Then she taught food service. Then she worked in PACES for 15 years. Now she teaches Algebra 1, ASL / English, Excel Math, Pre-Algebra, and health classes at ASD. Joan loved working in PACES, but when a teacher retired in the core program, she decided to move to the portables because she loves to teach math. She cares about ASD students and wants to help them be motivated. Also she cares about their parents.

Joan can feel the vibrations of music and also can hear it. She said she tries to understand the words in music. She watches very few television programs. Her favorite television programs are Switched at Birth, Law and Order, and NCIS. She has very little free time because she is on the boards of National Theater of the Deaf, Quota International in Danbury, Sprint Relay (Chairperson of the Board), and Bushnell Theater ASL Consultant. She is also a teacher at UConn 2 nights a week.

Her favorite hobby is travelling. She likes to go to Alaska where she went 4 times. Joan is very involved in the deaf community in Connecticut such as CCOSD and CAD. She attends events with many deaf people there like deaf holiday parties, deaf card groups, and deaf parties.



Ms. Micaela Long Micaela.JPG

by Estela Cardoso


EC: Where did you work before?
ML: I graduated last May. This September, I started my first job at ASD.
EC: How many months have you been at ASD?
ML: 3 months, I have been at ASD since September.
EC: What subjects do you teach at ASD?
ML: I teach English, health and biology.
EC: What college did you go to?
ML: I went to University of New Hampshire for my B.A. and Boston University in Massachusetts for my M.A.
EC: What was your major?
ML: It was psychology for my BA and deaf education for my MA.
EC: Where did you grow up?
ML: I grew up in Boston.
EC: Why did you move?
ML: I moved to Connecticut for my job at ASD.
EC: What do you do in your free time?
ML: I play sports- ice hockey.
EC: Tell me about your family.
ML: I have both parents, 2 brothers and 1 sister and a dog.
EC: Do you have deaf family?
ML: No, I do not have deaf family.
EC: Why do you want to work with deaf students?
ML: I took an ASL class in college. I loved it. I did an internship with deaf students in New Hampshire. Wow, I wanted deaf education for my M.A.
EC: Were you involved in sports? What is your favorite sport?
ML: I wanted to be in the Olympics as an ice hockey player.
EC: What do you do during your vacation?
ML: I like to go to Florida. I love the beach.
EC: When you were a little girl, what was your goal for working?
ML: At age 9, I wanted to play professional hockey.


Ms. Ashley Mazur Ashley.JPG

by Estela Cardoso


EC: Where did you work before?
AM: I worked in NYC for 2 years then I worked in the Bronx for 2 years. I taught 4th and 5th grade special education. This year is my 5th year teaching.
EC: What subjects do you teach at ASD?
AM: I teach 2 English classes, 2 Math classes and 1 TAV class.
EC: Where did you go to school?
AM: I went to Marist College in NY state.
EC: What was your major?
AM: My B.A. is in special education. My M.A. is in deaf education.
EC: Where did you grow up?
AM: I grew up in Southington, CT.
EC: Where did you move?
AM: I moved from CT to NY then back to CT then back to NY. Now I am in West Hartford.
EC: What do you do in your free time?
AM: I love movies, shopping, cooking and reading.
EC: Tell me about your family.
AM: I have Mom, Dad, 1 brother, 1 sister-in-law, 3 nieces, 1 nephew, and 1 cat. I will get married in July, 2013.
EC: Do you have deaf family?
AM: No deaf family but my niece is hard of hearing. She is 14 years old.
EC: Why do you want to work with deaf students?
AM: I love teaching and I love kids. I saw my niece struggle and wanted to help her and other students.
EC: Are you involved with sports? What is your favorite sport?
AM: I watch football. I played field hockey when I was in high school from 14 years old to 18 years old.
EC: What do you do during your vacation?
AM: I go to NH to visit my brother and his family. I also like to relax and watch movies.
EC: When you were a little girl, what was your goal for working?
AM: I always wanted to be a teacher like my mom.


Class of 2013: Ready to Graduate

Each issue will feature senior profiles

By Zoie Haggarty


Many students are going to graduate. They are going to different colleges or going to different jobs. They will be in the world; it is not going to be easy and there will be many challenges. The students will miss their
childhood friends. They will share their best memories with each other when they’re speaking at graduation in June.

Ana Aleman is definitely excited to graduate this June, and she plans to save a lot of money for college. She hopes to work in daycare then maybe go to college. Her goal is to have good grades before she graduates
from high school this June. She will not be going to college right away because she wants to invest her money first to make sure she has enough money. Then she can go to college. Ana has played a few sports both volleyball and basketball. She was the manager of the girls’ basketball team and also track and field. She will miss friends at ASD because they have made good memories. She will come back if it is possible to see the new building after she graduates. Yes she would like to pull some pranks on the senior students. She has been here at ASD for 5 years. Ana’s favorite part of being here is being with Zoie because they have been making a lot of memories, spending time with each other, and will keep in touch. They will not forget how they laughed so hard or were sad or grumpy together. They will always be there for each other. Her
favorite staff is Debbie because she did treat her sometimes to give her what she wants and also gave her a lot of good advice.

Morgan Rinehart is so very excited to graduate this June and plans to go to college. Her goal is to have great grades. She wants to go to college instead of having a job. She did participate in clubs such as Jr CAD, Student Forum, and class of 2013. She will miss the time at ASD that she spent with her friends. She will come back to see the new building. She will pull some pranks on the senior students. She has been here at ASD for thirteen years. Her favorite part of being here is her education. The teachers have been supportive, and it has inspired her a lot. Her favorite staff is Beth because Beth has helped her a lot since she met her.
Ashley Dole is SO happy to graduate in June. She wants to go to college but if the colleges don’t accept her, then she will apply for jobs. Her goal is to have the best education and grab the time to spend with her
friends. She has been participating in sports and clubs: volleyball, cheerleading, and track and field. She will miss volleyball season the most because the volleyball team got 2nd place, and that really impacted her.
She must see the new building when it is finished. She doesn’t mind to pull some pranks on senior students; she will do her best to try it. She has been here for 4 years. Her favorite parts of being here are last year when we had a beach party and being challenged in the dancing group. Her favorite staff is Pam because they understand each other and talk about both of their experiences.


ASD Seniors Win Homecoming King and Queen

By Brandon Macisco

Brandon interviewed Ana Aleman, Homecoming Queen.

BM: How did you decide who will be the king or queen?
AA: June decided to pick students who will be queen and king if students are doing well in school.
BM: Who won the king and queen?
AA: I was the queen and Dennis Donis was the king.
BM: Who won the prince and princess?
AA: Jose Vega and Ashley Dole.
BM: Who voted for the four students?
AA: Students and staff voted.
BM: What are votes based on?
AA: Good student in school or dorm, shows good leadership and teamwork, demonstrates good behavior and attitude, is Involved in extracurricular activities.
BM: How many alumni came to Homecoming?
AA: I’m not sure, but there were many people there.
BM: What did alumni do?
AA: Alumni talked with different people and old friends.
BM: Who was in the Homecoming parade?
AA: Bikers from Isola Bella, queen and king, and alumni who graduated before from ASD.
BM: How many schools came for the soccer tournament?
AA: 3 schools came – Lexington, Fanwood, and New Jersey.
BM: Who won the soccer tournament?
AA: New Jersey
BM: Who came for the volleyball tournament?
AA: Lexington
BM: Who won the volleyball tournament?
AA: ASD
BM: What kind of food was sold?
AA: Coke, water, cookies, and candy.
BM? Who had a display?
AA: Different groups like Sprint, ASDAA, etc.


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Queen Ana and King Dennis


Class of 2013 Hosts Homecoming Party

By Morgan Rinehart


On October 18, 2012, ASD high school students had a homecoming party. The theme was black and orange. The party started at 7:00pm. The homecoming party was in the Student Lounge. We had DJs. Also, ASD staff served us pizza, cookies and soda for the party. That was awesome delicious food for the party. Ashley Dole, Daz Parker, Estela Cardoso and Faye Frez- Albrecht worked hard to decorate the Student Lounge. Daz Parker taught us various games. The students were excited that Ana Aleman and Dennis Donis won for homecoming queen and king. Ana Aleman was shocked that she won for the homecoming queen. Also, Ashley Dole and Jose Vega won for runner up, princess and prince. The students had an amazing time. The party finished at 9:30pm.


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Students Visit Long Island Sound

By Jovahnna Delvecchio


On October 16, 2012, 3 science classes went to Long Island Sound to study ocean life. Mary Laporta, science teacher, organized the trip. The students learned about many ocean animals. They saw different kinds of
fish, squid, crabs, and whelk. They did not see any dolphins or whales. Mary’s favorite animal is the whale. She enjoys watching whales very much.

The group was on the boat Enviolab. It is 50ft long. No students got seasick. No one fell off the boat. The chemistry class went again on November 29, 2012. The class will go to visit the lighthouse in spring time. The students learned so much on the Project O Trip.






Picture This! Christa Bolen’s Photoliteracy Class photoliteracy class pic.jpg

By Morgan Rinehart


(Photo courtesy of Christa Bolen)
In the fall 2010, Christa Bolen started photography class. She said that she loves to teach the photoliteracy class. She uses digital photography because the students can see the pictures instantly and know what to write. A picture inspires students to write. She created the idea about photoliteracy 6 years ago. Her students were fascinated with her photography and they asked Christa if she can write a story about it. Now for the first quarter we work on portraits and autobiographies. She is proud of her students when they are proud of themselves.

Christa was influenced by her mother because she was a teacher. Also, Megan Burgess, an ASD alumna who is now an NTID/RIT student, wrote to Christa about photography. Nancy Forsberg also encouraged Christa to teach the class. Christa was influenced by the photographer Vivian Maier who did street photography. Christa’s favorite photography is street photography because it inspires her. Her favorite place to take pictures is New York City. She became a teacher instead of a photographer because photography is her hobby and her passion but not her profession. She enjoys sharing what she loves with her students. She said she will definitely teach photoliteracy class again next year. Also, she wants to share her photography with her students and uses it to inspire them to improve their writing. She uses technology like the activeboard, but the most important thing is letting the students try it themselves. The students learn photography skills and also learn grammar and new words. It is a lot easier when they have pretty pictures to inspire them.


Silent Garden Honors ASD Alumnus

By Estela Cardoso


The Silent Garden near Cogswell is a beautiful place. The garden honors the memory of Wayne Dabbs. Wayne`s sister is high school teacher Cindy Lindenberger. Cindy and her family planted the garden in memory of her brother. “My brother loved children. He wanted to become a teacher of the deaf in Cogswell. But he died in 2001,” Cindy said. The silent garden is a learning garden for Cogswell students to enjoy. Cindy, her mother Dottie and some high school students help to set up the seasonal decorations. Cindy`s family paid for the garden, and when other donations to ASD are made in memory of Wayne, they use the money to buy plants, flowers and decorations for the garden. The garden stays the same with different decorations. “ I love Wayne. He is the reason why I became a teacher of the deaf,” Cindy said.


Deaf Man Becomes International Star

By Zoie Haggarty


Joel Barish is a deaf man who travels to many diverse countries and experiences so many various things! It is interesting because he has eaten squid and scorpion and drank camel’s milk. He went bungee jumping in New Zealand and went to the rain forest in Puerto Rico. And in September, he visited ASD.

Joel travels around the world to show that there are deaf people doing interesting things in every country
around the world and that “deaf people can.” His show, No Barriers with Joel Barish, is accessible on the deafnation.com website. People can access information and videos about his travels.

When traveling to a foreign country, Joel needs to learn the most important words in the language, and he now knows many foreign words. He has learned countless number of sign languages from different countries. Mexico was the first country Joel visited. One interesting area that he visited was Nepal and India. Joel said it is impossible to pick out his favorite country because every country has a really good culture and environment.

His favorite foods while he travels have been Starbucks and sushi. But he doesn’t like camel’s milk or grasshoppers. His favorite animal that he has met was the koala because it was so cute, very soft and most people dream of holding a koala. He has the best memories of his trip to Greenland. He said that it is white everywhere and there are no trees.

When he arrives in a foreign country, he likes to adjust to the time zone and just go with the flow. He loves to fly. His longest trip was NYC to Delhi, India; it took 16 hours to get there. He enjoyed visiting Bhutan because it is very cold there, but Bali is a warm place. He started to travel when he was 1 year old and he has already visited 48 US states. He has two more to go - North Dakota and Montana. He has been travelling for 10 years with No Barriers and has covered 1.5 million miles and visited 65 countries. He does keep in touch with family by email but if he has no internet service, sometimes he doesn’t have any contact for 4 or 5 days. Joel has only 1 crew member, a cameraman, with him as he travels.



SAFE Schools

By Karmarie Burgos


The SAFE Schools program has come to ASD. This is a program to help stop bullying and to create a safe school environment. Ms. Alyssa Pecorino said the state now requires the program to start teaching the students: it’s the law to make sure everyone is safe and comfortable. The more people are cooperating, it becomes more effective. As the students get comfortable, there will be less bullying and the program will be totally effective to help out. There is a lot of paperwork for Alyssa to work on and to report to the state.

The SAFE program started 2 years ago to help solve the bullying problem in schools. They’ll bring new additions to the program that’ll set up more effectively than the last 2 years. Because of the positive energy people want to reflect; they want to focus on positive things and not pay attention very much to the negative things. She’ll keep doing it for the long years to come because it really works for everyone. The program works to help people to resolve the problems and prevent problems from happening again. Alyssa is the coordinator of this program, and there are several people under her to help. Alyssa said, “As long as you remember 3 expectations from American School for the Deaf; you’ll be successful all the way. Be safe, be responsible and be respectful.”


ASD Students Experience Tibetan Culture

By Ana Aleman


ASD students and staff went to Trinity College on October 3, 2012. They went to see the Tibetan sand mandala. The six Buddhist nuns from Tibet came to the United States and stayed at Trinity College for one month
and made the sand mandala using different colored sand. The group of women was from Nepal. They are Tibetan citizens.

A mandala is a kind of art inside a circle with various designs symbolizing the universe. Many symbols are inside the center of the designs because they honor many gods. One special god is called the “God of Compassion.” They crushed the rocks to make the sand for the mandala. They dye the sand different colors.

Their religion is Buddhism. They believe that long hair is ugly. They worship in a temple and at home too. They believe in many gods. The group of women learned how to make a sand mandala from the men monks. A long time ago, only groups of men made sand mandalas. The groups of women weren’t allowed to make sand mandalas. Finally, the Dalai Lama gave permission for this group of women to make sand mandalas.

Trinity College has invited the women 3 times. The college pays for bedrooms, food, flight cost etc. Even though they don’t know sign language, they were very happy that ASD students and staff went to see the sand mandala at Trinity College.



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The Tibetan nuns create the sand mandala



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Jon and Turki try making sand designs



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Kyle tries the prayer posture



Class of 2014 Has New Officers

By Jovahnna Delvecchio


This year, the class of 2014 elected officers. Jenilee Marques will be President. Vice President will be Kyle Dombrowki. The secretary will be Tanasia LaFrasier. Four students are sergeants at arms: Christopher
Ramaza, Erick Rodriquez, Elena Sonnemann, and Kelly Byrnes. They do not yet know who will be treasurer. All students will take turns to manage the Student Lounge. The advisors of the class will be Tracy Eaddy and Gail Lawrence.

Jenilee said the class of 2014 will plan the junior prom. Only seniors will go on a trip. She said around 20 people will graduate next year.


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By Ana Aleman


Maria Jacovino, our high school librarian, started a new job last year. When Maria was a young girl in elementary school, she volunteered at her school library in 5th and 6th grades. She loved to read books and help people too. She started to work at ASD in 1999 as a librarian assistant. Then in 2005, she became an administrative assistant. She realized that she wanted to go back to library school. She got into Simmons College where she got her MA degree in 2011.

She loves to work in the school library every day. She isn’t really frustrated by the work. Maria enjoys helping people when they ask her any questions and she likes challenges. Maria prefers to work with groups of people, and sometimes if she has research on the computer, then she prefers to be alone too.

She must prepare many reports. Circulation reports mean counting how many people borrowed books. Overdue means people who borrow books must return them by a specific date. Usage reports mean people used those books. Cataloging reports mean recording new extra books to the library.

Maria encourages reading books and buying new books if students really are interested in reading certain books. People want to borrow books more. She’s trying to ask people if they are interested in audio books. If so, she will buy audio books.

Last year, there was a lot of improvement and increased number of people who borrowed books. The reasons are book interest, staff is being friendly, and the reading competition because they really encouraged students to read books and get prizes. Maria said she must wear neat professional clothes. Her favorite authors are Steig, Kellerman, and Evonavich.

Maria loves to work at the ASD school library. She likes to help students and staff people. Maria loves to read books and encourages students to read books too. The students try to improve their reading skills and
get pleasure from reading books.


Class of 2013 Elects New Officers

By Jovahnna Delvecchio


The class of 2013 recently elected new officers. President is Ashley Dole. Denis Donis is Vice President. Morgan Rinehart is Secretary. Assistant Secretary is Daz Parker. Marcus Greco, Chris Ramaza, and Danny Lord are sergeants at arms. Anthony C. is treasurer. Dale Feeney and Gloria Haney are advisors. Ashley said around 25 people will graduate this year. The seniors will plan some fundraising events and host holiday dance, sports, and senior trip. The winter ball is called Tigmas. Ashley said, “We are not ready to decide about the senior trip before graduation.” Some seniors will buy new class rings this year. Ashley said most seniors plan to go to college or go to work.


Newsies

By Karmarie Burgos


Ninety-two American School for the Deaf high school students and staff went to see the play called Newsies on Broadway on Oct. 24th. The show was fantastic, so much music and dancing. The interpreters did a great job signing ASL. The show was based on the newspaper boys’ strike in 1899. The newspaper boys were striking against the newspaper company’s boss Joseph Pulitzer because he wanted to raise the
prices so the boys would have a hard time earning money from selling the newspapers in the streets. Those newspaper boys were called Newsies; they finally struck against the so-called greedy boss Mr. Pulitzer. The climax in the play was when the company’s boss Joseph thought he could win the case but the children won anyway. They made a deal with the boss saying if they couldn’t sell the newspapers the company
should take them back.

The show already had closed captioning on one side of the stage and awesome ASL interpreters! Nothing was too complicated. The interpreting and captioning were very smooth as planned on the right side. Ninety-two people sat in the 10 rows behind the rows for the people with visual-impairments.

Geri McGloin, former ASD Administrative Assistant, happened to be subbing in the high school during the week that the
students went to the show. She donated 14 “newsies” caps that her husband had worn to the students. A lottery was held to pick the students who would win the caps. They enjoyed wearing these special caps that reminded them of the great show. Thank you Geri!

Anna Andrews, English teacher said she hasn’t been to a NYC Broadway play for 8 years, and of course, she would love to go again!



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Waiting to enter the Nederlander theater





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Looking foward to the show




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Walking through Times Square

















Volume 1 Number 3 June, 2012



Gallaudet Hall Groundbreaking

By Alyssa Dole


On Monday, May 21st it was humid and rainy, but that didn’t stop what was going on here at the AmericanSchool for the Deaf. Under a big white tent, all the students and staff of the school watched invited guests and members of the ASD family one by one stand up and talk about ASD, past and present. Some very important people were there such as the president of the Board of Directors, David Carter, Senator Richard Blumenthal, and president of ASDAA, Alexandra McGee. Junior Marcus Greco also presented a speech. He is the fifth generation in his family to attend the school.

After the ceremony the festivities didn’t stop there. The Cogswell and high school students stayed out of class all day. There were student versus staff kickball games in both Cogswell and the Ward Gym. The game was a fundraiser for the new building set up by the junior high students. Over $800 was raised for the new building. Thank you to those students for all their hard work! It was a great day.



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Waiting for the ceremony to begin....




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Marcus speaks to the audience





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The shovels are ready...


ASD Peace Jammers Meet a Legend

By Maria Dadario


Peace Jam is an educational program that teaches students about becoming leaders and peace makers. Students learn about world issues and the life of a Noble Peace Prize winner. Students choose one of ten Global Calls to Action then create a service project for it. Every year there is a two day conference to meet the Noble Peace Prize winner and this year Peace Jammers met Betty Williams who won the prize in 1976. She is from Ireland and she tried to stop violence between Catholics and Protestants.

Eight core students attended the conference at UConn in Storrs, CT on March 24 and 25. The students were Maria Dadario, Morgan Rinehart, Erving Gaines, Shanice Nixon, Ashley Munchgesang, Marcus Greco, Daz Parker and Faye Frez-Albrecht. Abdul Al Nuaimi, Saif Al Ameri, Adel Al Hosani, Ahmed Al Kaabi, Manea Al Kaabi, Saeed Al Ketbi, Salem Al Mansoori, Turki Al Mansoori, Sultan Al Shamisi and Zayed Al Tamimi also attended.

They met Betty Willams and several ASD students had lunch with her. She talked about the challenge in Northern Ireland and stopping the violence there. We all were impressed with her effort. A favorite quote from Betty Williams is “Arms are for hugging, not for killing.”

This year ASD students chose Breaking the Cycle of Violence as their Global Call to Action and their service project was to help at the women’s shelter called My Sister’s Place to do spring cleaning. My Sister’s Place is a place for women and children who are homeless and who have been abused. On May 9th, 16 people went to My Sister’s Place. They split into three groups and each group had different jobs to do. Group 1 went to clean in the basement, group 2 went to clean in the group meeting room and group 3 went upstairs to clean the playroom. Students felt proud of their effort. “At first we felt bad for them and we had so much empathy for them. But then we felt able to help them and give our time. We would like to volunteer there again,” said Shanice. This year the Peace Jam advisers were Cindy Lindenberger, Anna Andrews and Arlene Blum.



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Shanice and Erving present the ASD project


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Abdul tries the "conveyer belt"


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Students with Betty Williams



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The group working at My Sister's Place





Riverwood Poetry Series

By Ja-Niece Griffith


On March 8, 2012 at 6:30pm, 7 ASD students went to Wood Memorial Library in South Windsor, CT to perform their poems. The poetry night was hosted by Tom Nicotera, ASD librarian, as part of the Riverwood Poetry Series. They had an ASL Poetry night and the students brought out some wonderful poems. Many people really enjoyed their poems so much.

Other people brought their poems too, and the students heard some of their beautiful traditional poems. There was a lot of cheering when 7 ASD students finished presenting their poems. Some of their poems had different kinds of formats like rap or form poems; other poems expressed emotions like sadness and happiness. Their poems reflected deep thought, deep emotion and were impressive, creative and expressed their true experiences. It was excellent! The students want to thank Tom Nicotera who invited the ASD students to his poetry night.



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Alyssa presents one of her poems





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The group poses after the poetry reading: (l to r) Maria, Ja-Niece, Alyssa, Ashley, Ana, Jenilee. Absent: Gabi





ASD Making Kony Famous

By Alyssa Dole


Posters at the vocational tech center line Bob Nitko’s classroom with “Make Kony Famous 2012” emblazed on them. Students are wearing pins, t-shirts, and bracelets with Kony 2012 on them as well. It gets people thinking who is Kony? Just so you know, he is not running as a presidential candidate.

Joseph Kony is one of the worst war lords the world has known. He is the leader of the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA) in Uganda,Africa. He runs an army of young boy soldiers taken from their homes and forced to kill their parents. The girls are sold as sex slaves.

Bob Nitko was taken aback by this when he saw a video on YouTube. He encouraged his students to take part in the effort to get the U.S.involved in capturing this man. He spent $400 on ten kits consisting of a t-shirt, button, bracelet, stickers, posters, and a guide. They were sold quickly. The profit goes to the Invisible Children Incorporated that helps stop LRA violence and helps former child soldiers recover.

Because of these efforts, Ugandan and U.S forces have united in the search to find Joseph Kony. If you would like more information on Kony and the Invisible Children Inc., visit their website: __http://www.kony2012.com__ . To watch the video, go to YouTube and type in “Kony 2012”.


Students Choose New Courses for 2012-2013

By Maria Dadario


High School Principal Nancy Forsberg had a great idea for adding new classes next year. There are 23 proposals for new classes.

The new classes for Language Arts include Spanish and Street Law. Forensics is proposed in the science department, and Weights and Measures will be offered for math. In PE, BFS (Bigger Faster Stronger) will be a new class. A few teachers have volunteered to teach the new courses and give students a few choices. Students will pick classes they want for next year in May, and Nancy will try to fit their choices into their schedule for next year. Nancy hopes this process will be done in July. “Those classes will help students be creative and learn more,” explained Ms. Forsberg.

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Civics Class Goes to Close Up

By Maria Dadariio


Four ASD students went to Washington DC for Close Up from May 6 to May 11. Kayla, Shanice, Daz, Marcus, and teacher Charlie Reisinger went to Washington DC to learn about politics and government. They went to different kinds of workshops. The program included workshops mostly related to civics issues. They learned about issues in education and immigration. They also learned about the U.S. Constitution and how laws are made. There were students from deaf and hearing schools from six different states.

The group also toured the city and saw the White House, Martin Luther King Statue, Thomas Jefferson Monument, Washington Monument, and the Capitol. They also visited the News Museum, the Natural History Museum and other museums in the Smithsonian. They visited CT Senator Richard Blumenthal and talked with staff from Congressman John Larson’s office.
Kayla commented, “The workshop was the best part of the program and I love to ride on the metro and go on the tour bus.” Shanice said, “I learned a lot about government and politics.”

Charlie said, “This was a wonderful and rich experience for the students and me.” Charlie was in teacher workshops and trips while the students were in their programs. Charlie learned a lot about the country named Bahrain and met the Ambassador, Houda Ezra Nonoo and Cultural Attaché, Aysha Murad.



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Kayla, Charlie, Senator Blumental, Daz, Marcus, and Shanice




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At the Capitol (Photos courtesy of Charlie Reisinger)






ASD Visits Lewis Mills

By Kayla Valuriya


On May 24, 2012 five classes from American School for the Deaf went to Lewis Mills High School to visit their hearing penpals. Lewis mills students are learning sign language in ASL 1 and ASL 2. Their teacher is Robin Mengual. ASD students saw their school was huge with large classrooms. The first activity was creating ASL poetry. ASD and Lewis Mills students worked together to make an ASL poem.

Then they toured the Lewis Mills High School classrooms. They looked around at different class rooms. ASD students saw advanced art and wheel clay class. Next, they watched Lewis Mills students perform their ASL songs. Then they played a game with hand shapes to find words that match the same shape. Last, they took a picture of the group for memories.



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LMHS and ASD penpals



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Kayla and her LMHS penpals







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Students perform their ASL poem






Building Friendship Across the Ocean

By Maria Dadario


The French Exchange Program between the Institut National de Jeunes Sourds de Paris and American School for the Deaf has been running for 24years. This year there are 14 ASD students in the French Exchange Program, and the advisers are Richard Golebiewski, Rachael Tyson, Charlie Reisinger and Anna Andrews,

This year the French group had 7 students and 3 staff. They stayed in the USA for 15 days. For the first four days they stayed in Washington, DC from April 21 to April 24. They visited the Smithsonian Museum, the monuments, and Gallaudet University. Then they took the train to Connecticut. They stayed here from April 25th to May 4th. There was an assembly on Wednesday April 25th to welcome the French students.

They took the tour of ASD campus, went to Mystic Aquarium and Pequot Museum, went on the Hartford walking tour and visited the cemetery where Gallaudet and Clerc are buried. The last activity was a trip to Boston. From May 4th to May 6th they went to New York City. They saw the Empire State Building, Statue of Liberty, Ellis Island, Times Square and Wall Street. They also attended a Mets baseball game. They flew back to France on May 6th.

Next year the Exchange Program will be celebrating 25 years. In July, 2013. ASD will host INJS for the celebration.



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Comparing 5 different sign languages (ASL, French, Spanish, Portuguese, Arabic)



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Visit to the Mashantucket Pequot Museum



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The group visits the Gallaudet and Clerc gravesites



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Enjoying a Mets baseball game in NYC


ASDTakes 3rd Place at CT Science Fair

By Alyssa Dole


Faye Frez-Albrecht, Dazjahnique Parker, and Lynette Saucier won third place at the Connecticut Science Fair for their study of beluga behavior. The fair was held at Quinnipiac University in Hamden, CT from March 17. More than 15,000 students from over 120 schools attended! Along with a blue ribbon, the girls got $500 from the Long Island Sound Foundation, $100 from Mystic Aquarium, and four tickets to the aquarium. Congratulations girls!




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Lynette, Daz, Faye and Mary at the CT Science Fair (Photo courtesy of Angela Saucier)






ASD Fashion Show

By Shanice Nixon


On March 16, 2012, Jr.CAD hosted a fashion show in the ASD Ward Gym to raise funds for Jr.CAD organization. Jr.CAD members and some staff modeled different styles such as casual clothes, prom dresses, beach clothes, and sports clothes. The clothes were donated from local stores. About 150-160 people came to watch the fashion show which was really awesome! Jr. CAD collected $500.00.

The Jr.CAD advisers are Rosemarie Greco and Doreen Simons. They graduated from ASD in the 70’s. They had been Jr.CAD members for a few years during high school and later they became our advisers. They really enjoy it. They are hardworking, cooperate together, give feedback to each other, and help each other too. They did a good job!

Rosemarie Greco stated, “Jr. CAD members, I encourage you to be involved in more activities, & fund raising events. Keep up the good work! Come on.”


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Family Learning Weekend “Building for the Future”

By Shanice Nixon


On March 16-17, 2012,ASD hosted the annual Family Learning Weekend. The theme was “Building for the Future.” John Anthony Serrano was the keynote speaker. He graduated from ASD in 1998. He came to FLW to share with the parents his perspective on how to build bridges within the family, school and community which will lead to building bridges for the future of a deaf/hard of hearing child. His presentation included interviews with parents whose children are deaf/hard of hearing, as well as “his personal experiences growing up as a deaf child in a hearing family, and what they did to build the bridge which helped him to become the successful deaf adult he is today.”

This great program has been going for 21 years. Cindy Paluch and Family Education Services host this program for the families to learn about deaf culture and children. Different parents don’t know what to do with a deaf child and how they can help them to be successful in their future; those parents are concerned about these children. Cindy decided to host this great program for them to connect with other parents and form a network. They were excited to come to Family Learning Weekend to experience how great it is. They can find solutions to their problems and can understand each other. The parents go to the workshops with other adults to talk about how they feel about these children. They are very emotional and stressed because they thought they might fail, but at the same time they tried their best to be good parents to these children. And all fathers discussed about how they can successfully communicate, get to know their children more, listen more, just come to support, & get close to their children. All mothers discussed about how they care about their babies, trying to understand them as much as possible, always are there for them whenever they need help.

Cindy Paluch stated that she hopes FLW will continue to grow and include sisters, brothers, cousins or whoever just needs to be involved in this program because they just want to learn about a deaf child or learn sign language. Her goal is to have more people come to this program and never stop. It continues to grow forever. Cindy also said, “Please tell your friends or family members to come to FLW.”


Student Wins Scholarship

By Alyssa Dole


Congratulations to Senior, Gaines, who won the Governor’s Coalition for Youth with Disabilities Scholarship! GCYD is a non-profit organization with the mission to recognize Connecticut high school students with disabilities. They hold a ceremony in Hartford annually to acknowledge the award winners for their achievements. Erving received scholarship money and a certificate at the ceremony on May 18th. Counselor Scott Robinson and the Director of Education, Fern Reisinger attended the ceremony with Gaines. Erving Gaines was the only deaf student there. “I didn’t even know about the scholarship until Robinson told me,” commented Erving. He had to write an essay on his goal for the future to be eligible for the scholarship. Gaines intends to become a counselor after college.

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Fern congratulates Erving on his award





New PrintWorks Intern

By Ja-Niece Griffith


Lisa Ruderman Hawkins was born “profoundly and proudly” deaf. She is currently residing in Los Angeles and Alberta,Canada. Lisa wants to be a film maker because she became fascinated with her husband’s work. Her husband, Wesley Hawkins, is a film maker. She went to National Technical Institute for the Deaf (NTID) and she got AAS degree in Arts & Imaging Studies. She found out that NTID & ASD have an excellent partnership, and that’s how she found us! She has worked as an interior designer, massage therapist, and camp counselor for deaf children. However, she said, “The best work in the world is staying home with my children as mom.”

Lisa started her internship on March 12th, 2012 and she worked here for ten weeks. She worked at PrintWorks in ASD, and she had two mentors, John Barrett and Randy D’ Angelo. She said, “They are effective because of teamwork effort.” She chose to come to ASD because of the deaf community. She said, “The internship has proven more beneficial than I imagined.” It was also an excellent opportunity to get to know what it is like to move to a new place, explore new cultures, make new friends and learn to rely on her own instincts and skills. She served as academic tutor for the gentlemen from United Arab Emirates (UAE) and she will stay connected with ASD while getting new experiences. She was grateful to be at ASD and have the opportunity to participate in extra activities such as ASL Festival at NortheasternUniversity, CEASD, and French Exchange Program.

She said, “I am looking forward to the next step of my career where I will be traveling around the world to make a good living and be successful. Believe it or not, this will be my last day on May 18th, time flew by so fast that I saw the motion blur of my eyes and it is time for me to say and sign with my hand waving ‘farewell’ to the great bunch of people.”

Her last words of advice were, “Always think positively and believe in yourself.”

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Lisa Ruderman Hawkins


Students Attend Last Meeting of CT Forum

By Shanice Nixon


Four students from ASD went to Connecticut Science Center on May 14th for the last meeting of Connecticut Youth Forum Conference. Tanasia Lafrazier, Dazjahnique Parker, Ana Aleman, Shanice Nixon, and staff Belinda Lugo attended the meeting. They had a good time. CT Forum hosted a party, and they were excited to dance on the floor.

Connecticut Forum is an opportunity for different schools to come to meet together to discuss about any teen topics like stereotypes, sexual orientation, bullying, and religion. They meet a few times during the year at different schools.

ASD has been involved in the CT Forum for 13-14 years. For some time, students showed a lack of interest in the CT Forum. However, later ASD students wanted to go to CT Forum and became involved again. “Our students go to meetings about a variety of topics,” said June Terry, Dean of Students. They say their opinions freely, speak up from their hearts, and express their feelings. They also don't judge each other or discriminate. Everyone respects each other.

June thinks around one hundred schools are involved in the CT Forum. CT Forum asks if you want to host a CT forum meeting, then some of schools respond back. That's how every meeting is scheduled.

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Maritime Studies Class Takes Scuba Lesson

By Ja-Niece Griffith


On May 14th, Mary Laporta and her maritime studies class, Xavier P. Jamilet R., Maria D., Erving G., and Morgan R. got a scuba lesson for the second year in a row. Mary asked Alyssa Pecorino about scuba lessons, and Alyssa told her that one of her friends is a scuba diver himself. That’s how Mary got a scuba lesson for her class. Mary’s class learned about diving from Alan Kelly, scuba diver, and his two daughters Meghan Kelly and Allison Kelly. Alan and his two daughters taught them how to swim with scuba equipment.

Mary said, “They’re really enjoying it and nervous about it at the same time. It’s very fun!” She expected her students to get their new experiences with breathing as fish under the ocean instead of as normal humans. Mary’s class needed to respect science and respect their scuba gear to defeat their fear. Mary wanted them to feel like Jacques Cousteau, a famous scuba diver. Xavier P. Jamilet R., Maria D., Erving G., and Morgan R. got the scuba lesson at the pool.

Maria Dadario said, “We had fun and really enjoyed it!”

Maritime study is defined as the study of different kinds of oceans around the world. “Maritime studies are an Interdisciplinary academic field that embraces the liberal arts as the foundation for exploring humankind’s critical and continually evolving connections with the world’s waterways and watersheds.”

Alan and his two daughters got in a car accident on May 14th, the morning of the ASD lesson. They thought their air tanks would explode, but it did not happen and they used the tanks during Mary’s class. After they left, they had to go to the repair store for their scuba equipment, and the person who hit their car will pay for all of this. Mary didn’t know how much the scuba supplies cost, but she was sure that it’s very expensive.

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Students receive breathing instructions


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The scuba divers (l to r): Erving, Jamilet, Xavier, Morgan. Back row: Maria




ASD Wins First Place in Civics Competition

By Maria Dadario


“We the People” is a national program that helps students understand history, government and the Constitution. On May 10th, Kathy Falco’s Civics classes participated in a simulated Congressional hearing. Deaf students competed against hearing students from two different schools, Hillcrest Middle School in Trumbull, CT and Putman Middle School in Putman, CT. They focused on the U.S. Constitution and Bill of Rights. ASD had three teams who testified in front of a panel of judges. They answered questions about government and the constitution. They won first place.

This program has been running since 2011. The program is supported by Civics First.

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Volume 1 Number 2 February, 2012


New Gallaudet Hall Coming Soon

By Kayla Valuriya

After 22 years of planning, ASD will build a new Gallaudet Hall. It will be very expensive. The state of Connecticut never committed the money for the new building. The State supports education of the deaf and ASD, but did not support the new building construction. ASD Board of Directors decided to construct the building ourselves. ASD Board and Mr.Peltier hired a consultant to study the school needs. We need 60,000 square feet of space with a cost of about $20 million.

How will ASD pay for the building? “The Board agreed to a budget of private funds for the new Building,” said Mr. Peltier. “We will use a combination of funding. We will use some of the school’s endowment. We will raise some money in a Capital Campaign. We will take in some debt and pay some out of operating expenses. We may lease or sell some land,” explained Mr.Peltier.


The architect for the project is Tai Soo Kim Partners of Hartford. They hope to break ground in spring. "We want a good bright learning environment so students can learn and be prepared for work or college," said Mr. Peltier.


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Visit to Candyland

By Kayla Valuriya


The Senior Class hosted the annual Christmas party on December 15 in the student lounge. The theme was Candyland. Maj and Jamilet created the wall art.

Curt Hayward helped the senior class make their own food and drinks. They made pigs in the blanket, nachos with cheese and salsa, chicken wings, desserts, and cookies.


7th to 12th graders went to the party. The students and staff got little gifts of Santa hats, and there was a raffle for prizes. Morgan had the idea to make prizes and make raffle numbers. The prizes were candy and cute stuffed animals. Kevin Gordon and Dequan Thomas were the DJ’s. They did a wonderful job making the music and had good team work. There was also a gingerbread house contest.

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Students enjoy the Christmas party.





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Samantha is having fun.


Beth’s Birthday Surprise

By Maria Dadario


On January 26, six students and R.C. Beth Witthohn from Cottage D went out for dinner at the Olive Garden. Beth thought we were going to learn about leaving tips and restaurant manners, and she had no idea there would be a surprise for her. We had a waiter who knew a little sign language so it was easy for us to communicate. We ordered pasta with bread and salad. For dessert, we had apple custard and coffee. The waiter surprised Beth with a small cake with a candle on it. She enjoyed it very much and she taught the girls how to figure out the tip and have good manners at the restaurant. We all had fun that evening for Beth’s birthday surprise.


Class of 2013 Finds Advisors

By Alyssa Dole

It’s common for the junior class to start meeting about fundraising for prom in the beginning of the school year. However, the class of 2013 didn’t even have advisors until late winter. “We have had elections a few times,” June Terry stated. “Some people couldn’t accept the position due to their schedules.” Eventually, Dale Feeney and Gloria Haney accepted the positions as advisors, and the class was excited. Because both Dale and Gloria are newcomers to being class advisors, they often seek counsel from Beth Witthohn, Class of 2012 advisor.

When asked about whether the junior class would be able to host prom this year, Dale was adamant. “Prom plans are in process right now,” he declared.




Lewis Mills Penpals Visit ASD

By Shanice Nixon

On Tuesday, February 7th, 28 students from Lewis Mills High School came to ASD to meet their pen pals, to learn how to socialize with deaf students and to improve their sign language skills. Also ASD students learned to socialize with hearing students. In the morning, ASL 1 class went to Cogswell to observe elementary classes. ASL 2 class went to high school classes with their ASD pen pals.

The students went to the old gym to eat lunch together. During lunch, ASD students interviewed their Mills pen pals. They played two games to learn sign language.

The ASD-LMHS pen pal program began 12 years ago. Robin Mengual, a former teacher at ASD, moved to Lewis Mills High School to teach hearing students sign language. She also had an idea to start a program for pen pals with deaf students. Anna Andrews, ASD English teacher for many years, agreed to help Robin. Cindy Lindenberger and Gail McCormack were English teachers who also participated in the program. They taught ASD students how to write the letters and improve their English. Then ASD students made a video of their letters so that Mills students can learn to sign. ASD and LMHS students enjoyed the program.

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Marcus and his LMHS pen pals
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LMHS & ASD pen pals

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Morgan interviews her pen pals
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Students play a sign language game


ASD visits NCCC

By Maria Dadario


On January 31, Kirsten Lingenheld and her Early Childhood Education class went to Northwestern Connecticut Community College (NCCC). Twelve students went on the trip. Maria, Elena, Molly, Jamilet, Ana, Nyree, Nicole, Erving, Christian, Shanice, Ja- Niece and Keiondra toured through the Early Childhood Education Center. At the center, they teach college students how to work with young kids and how to care for them. College students have to take English, math and other studies. All the students enjoyed visiting there, and it was very interesting to learn how to work with kids. Later, the group toured NCCC campus and ate lunch.

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Students Recognized for Achievement

By Kayla Valuriya


On February 17, 2012 second quarter Student Recognition Program took place in Ward Gym. Alyssa Pecorino was responsible for running the program. Students who earned high honors and honors were recognized. To get honors, students need to have a grade point average of 3.00-3.32. To get high honors, students must have a grade point average of 3.33 or above. Nancy Forsberg, Principal, said, “All students have a chance to earn honors and get the best possible education if they have good habits and study hard.”

Next, teachers gave awards to students for excellence and effort. After that, Alyssa showed a video about the new building and what it will look like inside.
Then, she shared suggestions from students about keeping ASD safe and having a good learning environment, and ways to address bullying. Students want to make a bulletin board and have a suggestion box. Next, Alyssa explained about coming events. Finally, she showed CB’s class photography and poetry.


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PACES Hosts Valentine’s Party

By Alyssa Dole




Music emanated from outside the Student Lounge where attendees were dancing the night away on Thursday, February 17 at the Valentine’s party hosted by PACES. The mood was set by dimmed lights and hearts decorating the room. A disco ball rotated on the ceiling, glistening spots of light on the walls and people. Off to the side, Pam and Sandra served drinks and snacks such as popcorn, chips, pretzels, and soda.


Senior, Kevin Gordon, led the girls in a dance competition followed by the boys. Each student and staff (some reluctantly) danced. Sam Berenson even got his groove on! After the dancing dissipated and cake was given out, “The Dating Game” started, led by Carey and AJ. Two girls and three boys took turns sitting behind the green screen used for Bob Nitko’s film class so they couldn’t see their “contestants”. Three boys or girls would sit on the other side and answer questions that the first side asked. After four questions each, one contestant was picked to be the “date”. The crowd went wild! “I think every party from now on should have that game,” commented Gabriela Levesque, grade 10.

Christopher Ramaza, grade 10, however wanted more games with prizes to win. His classmate, Zoie Haggarty, replied with a cheerful smile on her face, “It was fun! A lot of activities and the food was good. A lot better than last year.”



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ASD Interns

Jennifer Lash

by Ja-Niece Griffith


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Joe Basile’s intern is Jennifer Lash. She is deaf, and she comes from Michigan. She investigated different schools for an internship. She knew ASD was the first deaf school established in 1817, and she would like to brag about working here. She looked through the website and found out about ASD on the computer. ASD has internship and volunteer opportunities. That’s how she ended up at ASD. Jennifer wants to get new experiences in PACES (Positive Attitude Concerning Education and Socialization) Program.

Jennifer wants to have different experiences because she had lived mostly in the mid-west and wanted to step out of her comfort zone and come to the East Coast. She wants to be a school counselor. She went to Gallaudet University in Washington, D.C to get a BA in communication studies. Now she wants to go there again to get an MA as a school counselor. Jennifer likes to focus on teenager’s issues, their behaviors, their problems, coping skills, and anger management. She also wants to teach them to avoid peer pressure, for example, drinking alcohol, smoking weed and learning how to say “NO!” She is interested in becoming a school counselor. She had experience volunteering as a Peer Health Advocate, Dorm Supervisor, and Camp Counselor.

About her experience at ASD so far, she said, “Expect the Unexpected!”



Brian Milburn


By Maria Dadario


Brian Milburn was Kathy Falco’s intern in the high school portables. He is a student at RIT/NTID. He taught ASD high school students history and Deaf History. He grew up in Chicago. He went to Hershey High School and RIT. He has wanted to be a teacher for the past two years. He wants to be a

college professor. He also wants to record how many cars there are in the world. He enjoys being here because people sign and they are cool. This was his first time to be an intern.


“You have about 50 summers in your life. Enjoy all of them!” Brian said.

Kira Bell

By Maria Dadario


Kira Bell is an intern at American School for the Deaf. She works in Cogswell with Becky Peters. Kira teaches preschool and kindergarten class. She learned sign language at Oak Ridge High School. Kira teaches ASD students math, science, social studies and language arts. She enjoys being here because students and staff are nice and friendly.



Anna Ragonese

By Ja-Niece Griffith

Cheyenne Rhodes, ASD Paces Clinical Services Case Manager, has an intern. Her name is Anna Ragonese. She is hearing, and she comes from Springfield, MA. She has never worked with the deaf population before, but she knew it would be a new and exciting experience. Anna is always interested in learning about new populations. She wants to be someone whom clients feel like they can talk to easily and relate to. She wants to be laid back and not too strict with her work, but she wants it to be effective and helpful. Anna hopes to learn how to interact with people who are different from her. She hopes to learn how to run a class smoothly and quickly come up with solutions when she runs into a problem. One of her friends did her internship at ASD as well. She told Anna that it was a great place to do an internship.

She has always been a creative person and she thought it was interesting that there is a form of therapy that does not even require the clients to use words. It is solely based on artwork. For many years, she was an instructor at a karate studio for kids and adults. Anna has babysat a lot, worked at a craft store, and also worked at a summer craft program. She attends Springfield College, and she as two majors – occupational therapy and art therapy


Joletta Lee

By Ja-Niece Griffith


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In Cogswell, Anne Nutt’s intern is Joletta Lee who comes from Michigan. She is a CODA (Children of a Deaf Adult), and she wanted to come here because ASD is a different place to experience.

She knew about ASD because ASD is the first deaf school established in 1817. Also, she asked her teachers about ASD. Joletta is learning about deaf culture. She likes to teach many kinds of age-appropriate topics. She has not decided to be a teacher yet. She is learning a lot of things
about students’ behaviors and levels at various ages.

Joletta met a few of the UAE boys. She would like to focus on ESL and wants to learn how to speak different languages. She has worked at various jobs such as babysitter, coffee shop, clothes shop and other jobs too. She knows ASD has a good name, and she wants to have a good name too. Joletta wants to get a lot of benefits from her experiences here. She goes to tate University and is working on a BA in Education.

Lalita Bumpen

By Ja-Niece Griffith



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ASD Librarian, Maria Jacovino, has an intern named Lalita Bumpen. Lalita was raised in West Hartford, CT, and she is hearing. She learned ASL in class at university and is meeting deaf people at ASD. She has not decided whether or not to be a teacher, but she wants to be an interpreter and get a masters degree in Deaf Education. She is excited to learn anything new about deaf culture and any new words in sign language.

Lalita lives near ASD and knew about ASD’s history growing up. She likes to work with children and adults too. She graduated from Suffolk University in Boston. She got a BA in public relations. Lalita has worked at Interpreters and Translators, a language company. She set up appointments for people who needed interpreters. Lalita had a list of clients (interpreters) who were called for these jobs.


New ASD Staff

By Maria Dadario


Melissa Libby is a new staff member at ASD. She went to NCCC to learn sign language and ASD history. She has worked at Butterworth Dorm since November 21, 2011. She is a one-on-one with a student. She enjoys working here because everyone is friendly and nice.

Terri Northrop is also a new staff member at ASD. She is working 3rd shift in PACES Butterworth Dorm. She watches the girls overnight, and she will be a one-on-one with one female student. She has worked here since November 14, 2011. She took sign language class at college. She enjoys working here because the girls are very nice and fun to chat with.






Volume 1 Number 1 January, 2012


11 UAE Students at ASD

by Maria Dadario


There are 11 students from United Arab Emirates (UAE) currently here at ASD. They are all boys. Their names are Mohammed, Nasser, Saif, Salem, Sultan, Turki, Ahmed K., Ahmed S., Adel, Manea and Abdul.

They are here at ASD to learn English. They are staying in cottages A, C and E for the week and weekends. On weekends they go to the mall or grocery store for Arabic food or visit Boston or Washington DC. During vacation some boys go back to UAE and others go visit local towns.

Staff who work with them are Bob Nitko, Richard Golebiewski, Shahryar Shilati and Jason Shilati. Richard Golebiewski and Ed Peltier went to UAE to talk with the government about education for the deaf at ASD in America. They have been running this program for three years.

There will be two more UAE students coming in the next few months.



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Left to right Row 1: Turki, Manea, Abdul, Adel. Row 2: Ahmed K., Saif, Ahmed S., Sultan, Salem, Mohammed. Absent: Nasser




School Safety

By Shanice Nixon



The state of Connecticut is demanding new laws be set up for safety and bullying in schools. The law is CT Public Act #11-232. To help ASD follow the new law, Alyssa Pecorino and Barbara French set up an assembly for “Positive Behavior Support”.

At the recent assembly Barbara French opened with our new school slogan “Be Safe, Be Responsible, Be Respectful”. Barbara’s dog, Bear, represented safety. “He was chosen because we knew the younger elementary children would pay attention to him and be drawn in by his zany behavior,” Alyssa said.

Students had recent training on new bullying laws enacted by the state of Connecticut. It’s required by law that this training happen annually due to the rise in bullying and suicides nationwide. “As o fDecember 8, 2011 we have had 14 suspensions for bullying at ASD including 7th-12th grade and dorm incidents. This is very alarming and we will be hosting student forums soon to address this and get the students’ feedback. From there, we will decide what to do,” explained Alyssa.

If RC staff, teachers, principals, and students could cooperate, then bullying will stop.



Be Safe! Be Responsible! Be Respectful!



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By Ja-Niece Griffith



American School for the Deaf had a power outage from October 29 to November 3 due to a surprise snowstorm. Fern Reisinger, Director of Education, said, “I live near ASD about six minutes. I had a hard time driving to ASD, but I finally arrived in about thirty minutes.”

There was a lot of damage around ASD’s property. Fern said, “I got up every morning to check the news to make sure everything was all right.” Administrators decided to close American School for the Deaf for a week. Fern said, “Staff did a GOOD JOB keeping busy with students during the power outage. They were working so hard to bring students off campus most of the time. They did a good job to keep students in warm places.”

Fern said, “We were lucky that our freezers kept running on generators until electricity was restored. Our food was safe.” All students got back to American School for the Deaf on November 7. She said, “Some of our computer information was lost, and we felt bad for those who did work so hard to get all information back on to the computers.”

Fern said, “I typed a new schedule of the 180 days school must be open. I set up the new school calendar and I hope the Board will approve our rescheduled days.” She sent the information to ASD Board of Directors for make-up days. Fern said, “We have plan A or B for school, teachers, and bus companies for safety reasons.” Teams are important for discussing and getting good advice in making this decision.

We are ready and prepared for the next bad storm coming. She wants to announce that school’s end is delayed to about June 19th.




JRCAD Elects Officers

By Alyssa Dole

Sophomore Jenilee Marques was elected for the third time as secretary of the Junior Connecticut Association of the Deaf (JRCAD) on Monday, November 14th. President Marcus Greco, Vice President James Trusock, and Treasurer Morgan Rinehart were elected for the first time.

“My goal for this year in JRCAD is to make it the best in its history,” James Trusock, grade ten, said. Marcus Greco, grade ten, nodded in agreement. Greco went up against Daz Parker, grade 10, and Ashley Dole, grade eleven. It was a hot competition between Dole and Greco. In the end, Marcus beat his opponent by only one point.

JR CAD meets on the first Monday of every month during the school year. If you would like to get involved with our community and gain leadership skills and political knowledge, come to the next meeting with ten dollars to become a member. Who knows, maybe one day you will be our next president.



Thanksgiving Food Drive

By Kayla Valuriya

Some ASD families can’t afford a nice Thanksgiving dinner. Betsy Denorfia and Cindy Paluch have been helping those families for many years through Family Education Services. Also teachers and counselors helped. They saw some families had no food for Thanksgiving. They collected turkeys, potatoes, stuffing, vegetables, juice, pasta, rice, pumpkin, and cranberry sauce. Papers with simple Thanksgiving sign language for children was put in the boxes too.

The deadline was 11-22-11. The collection boxes were in Cogswell, Portables, and Voc. ASD sent home 20 boxes of food and turkeys.


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ASD Open House

By Maria Dadario

American School for the Deaf had Open House on Veterans’ Day on November 11 2011. Twenty parents came to open house. They went to the office to get their schedules. The schedule told what it will be like for the day. Nancy Forsberg welcomed parents with a speech and showed a video. Then parents went to each class with their child. They all went to a special lunch. Mr. Peltier gave a speech about the new building. After lunch the parents went to meetings with the teachers.



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By Shanice Nixon


PACES Department hosted Thanksgiving dinner for students’ families and friends on Tuesday, November 22, 2011 in Cogswell dining room. They decorated tables with forks, spoons, and plates. PACES girls made 18 apple and pumpkin pies. Some students made 100 cupcakes during Kirsten L.’s class. They ate a full Thanksgiving dinner, including turkey, sweet yams, potatoes, corn, bread, green beans, and dessert.

They planned to have 120 people, but they had between 70-75 people. Last year, they had 110 people show up. Everyone really appreciated the dinner. Some PACES students are not able to go home on weekends and stay over at ASD. These students especially appreciated it because they don’t have Thanksgiving dinner at home.

Sharon Shirley-Bailey, Assistant Dean of PACES girls and Jr High, said in past years, staff cooked dinner for PACES students, their families, and ASD administrators. But this year, they have a lot of students. So they had to order dinner for Tuesday night from Sodexho. RC staff and students ate together like a family.

Sharon said PACES students could see RC staff support their needs and goals. They want students to be successful. She said, “We give thanks for you.” She likes to help students and wants them to be successful. She really cares and loves all of them. PACES staff wants to make a difference in their lives.



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ASD Alumnus Visits from Texa

By Ja-Niece Nixon


John Serrano, high school principal at Texas School for the Deaf, and ASD alumni, returned to CT on Thursday November 10th. The National Council of Hispano Deaf and Hard of Hearing (NCHDHH) invited John Serrano to speak at the NCH Youth Program Retreat at Camp Isola Bella. He taught about Hispanic culture and defined leadership. About ten people came from ASD, TSD and other schools to Camp Isola Bella in Salisbury, CT for the retreat. Also, he came to our school ASD to speak to students about their future and how to reach their goals for the future and find who you are. He had a lot of important advice for ASD students to get a lot of experience. He had good advice about getting any experience from any club before they enter real life. Students should learn how to set up their goals and their future before it is too late.


John graduated in 1998 from American School for the Deaf. He went to Gallaudet University in Washington D.C. where he got BA and MA. He went to Texas School for the Deaf for an internship. He wasn’t sure what kind of teacher he wanted to be. He decided to become an elementary teacher in the elementary school. After he graduated from Gallaudet, he became an elementary teacher.


During the summer, he did not work. He liked to volunteer at summer camp with elementary kids. He started as an elementary teacher. He was promoted to High School Assistant Principal and later he was promoted to Principal. He has worked at TSD for eight years. He really is enjoying work and socializing with students.


John lives in Austin, Texas with his beautiful wife and his two adorable children. His son is 2 years old and his daughter is 3 years old (will be 4 soon). He admitted that he really misses New England because he loves beautiful nature and trees. He was raised here in CT. He likes to run and also to read a newspaper every day. He always wants to know what is happening each day before it becomes late news. His goal is to be a good teacher to students and keep helping them and wants to be a good father to his children too.



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Deaf Oz

By Maria Dadario


The Drama Club created a play call Deaf Oz based on the Wizard of Oz. In Deaf Oz Dorothy is deaf. Dorothy helps the characters understand that deaf culture is different and deaf people use American Sign Language. The first play was shown last April, 2011 during Deaf Heritage Week. Everyone was amazed and enjoyed the play. The performers did a great job.

The play was so popular it went on the road. While on tour, the performance went to Cromwell Plaza. Next they performed in Middlebury and then at Duncaster, a retirement home in Bloomfield. They ordered the costumes online. Debbie Bosworth helped with the sets and the costumes.


The cast was Jenilee M. (Dorothy), Alyssa D. (Scarecrow), Ashley D. (Cowardly Lion) , Erving G. (The Tin man), Daz P. (Door Man), Ja-niece G. (Wizard), Kelly B. (Auntie Em), DeQuan T. (Uncle Henry), Tanasia L. (Witch) Jamilet R. (Glenda), Marcus G. (Magician) Shanice N. (Mrs. Gulch), Maria D. and Keiondra H. (Munchkins). Kathy Falco did a phenomenal job as director.