Wednesday, April 1, 2020

Principal's Blog: Perspective, 3rd-Quarter Grades, 4th-Quarter Plans, Kahoot Trivia Night, and a Note From Colleges

April dawns and I think we all wish we could call this period of time a cruel April Fool's joke and return to life as it was before the coronavirus.  

Despite the ringing of alarm bells by medical professionals and icons like Bill Gates, our lack of experience made pandemic warnings seem possible, even scary, but not probable.  The small percentage of people who saw this coming surely wish they were proven wrong, and for the rest of us, our collective innocence on the potential of a life-altering, global pandemic is forever shattered. 

Below is an update on 3rd-quarter grades, future educational plans, communication from colleges, and a community-building event. None of this should cause stress, it should not induce panic, it should be viewed through a perspective calibrating lens recently adjusted by the coronavirus. 

Of course, everything in our life matters to us greatly, but crisis has the magical capacity of providing a wake-up call; to appreciate and miss things both large and small previously taken for granted, and the fragility of life and the vulnerability that accompanies a pandemic makes everything besides your health, the health of your family, your friends, and all of humanity not nearly as important as it seemed just a few weeks ago.  

Over the last two weeks, we learned what we already knew, viruses do not discriminate, they do not recognize borders, race, gender, age, ethnicity, social status or political hierarchy; the British Prime Minister has contracted the disease.  One disconcerting development is a surge in racism against Asians. Linking infectious diseases to certain immigrants groups is not new, but it is never acceptable, and blaming Asians for our current epidemic is unconscionable.  We are all in this together, so let's be kind and take care of each other. 

4th-Quarter Educational Plan
The final details of a new educational plan are nearing completion, and we plan to communicate those before the weekend.  One thing remains the same.  We are asking all students and staff to do the best they can, and the best for some might mean very little.  For others, a routine with more normalcy is a welcome change to the present course.  We all need to be compassionate, kind, flexible, and understanding.  In the context of a pandemic, we can all benefit from connecting with each other; however, in the context of a global health crisis, we need to be aware that students, families, and staff are not immune to the stress of the unknown.  I know you are doing the best you can, and I am proud of how well we are doing.  

Q3 Grades
Over the past two weeks, we have discussed several options for grading in Q3.  This is where I landed.  Any student with a grade below a 90 average has the option of pass/fail.

Teachers will post a numeric/letter grades in Aspen early next week.

Teachers will send out a Google form to their students asking them if they would like to change their letter grade to a P/F.  Educators may choose to seek responses via another method, google forms are just a suggestion.

Teachers have until Friday, April 10 to change the grade to P/F

If a student chooses to do P/F for Q3, it will not impact your final grade or GPA. The other quarters carry more weight and have a larger impact on the final average.  

Virtual Kahoot Trivia Night tomorrow evening (Wed, 4/1) at 7pm 
We will be hosting a virtual Kahoot Trivia Night tonight (Wed, 4/1) at 7pm. 

You can register for the event at the link below:

This event is open to everyone (students, educators, and families)

You will see the Kahoot questions via our zoom screen share. 

You have two options to enter your answers:
1. Using your Phone - download the Kahoot app on your phone and then enter the game join code when the game starts (suggested method)

2. Using your Computer - you can have two windows open on your computer. One with the zoom screen share (with the Kahoot question) and another where you will enter your answer.We hope that you will join us.

Communication From Colleges

From Vanderbilt:

“There’s no doubt that high school transcripts for this year’s and future year’s applicants will look different. There will be pass/fail grades where there once were As and Bs. There will be tests untaken, chances to improve foregone, and letters of recommendation truncated. But as it always has been at Vanderbilt, context dictates how we read files. And in unprecedented times, context will take on unprecedented importance. You have our pledge that as this crisis evolves, so too will our use of context in the admissions process. But it will never relinquish its central place in our evaluation of the files of your students. Holism has, and will remain, the byword of our admissions process.

Sure – your applicant’s extracurricular charts will look different in coming years. No future applicant will have had the lead in the school musical in spring 2020. No one will be regional tennis champ in spring 2020; no one will have won an election for junior class officer in spring 2020. But that doesn’t mean they won’t be making impacts in the new environment. Some applicants will actually have time to play music, create, read for pleasure, or develop new and interesting hobbies. Some will find themselves with increasing family responsibilities or the need to undertake a part-time job. Regardless of the circumstances your students find themselves in, we’ll understand. It all goes back to context. How future applicants cope with this period of pandemic will certainly be a topic on which we will read many essays in the coming years. Reassure your students that we get it. We understand. And we can’t expect extracurricular activities grids to look the same in the near future.”

From University of Virginia:
“Please know that students will not be at a disadvantage in the admission process as a result of school closures and cancellations associated with standardized testing. Students are not responsible for things they cannot control. With most high schools closed for the spring semester, we will need to be flexible when evaluating transcripts and academic course work, and we will continue to monitor the state of standardized testing nationally and abroad. If testing is cancelled through the summer and into the fall, we will need to discuss our testing requirements for next year. Our enrollment deposit deadline remains May 1, but we will monitor the situation over the next several weeks to determine if changes to our schedule need to be considered.”

From Boston University:
“For those applying to the fall 2021 or spring 2022 semester, BU will be test optional for first-year applicants.” 

From Union College:
“We know the 2020 spring terms of most high schools have been put into turmoil. We understand that many transcripts will not have the same grading structure shared with us in the past (i.e. some will move to pass/fail), and some schools will have truncated ends to their academic years.
“No games are being played and there is no spring musical to present. At Union we totally get it. We will take all of that into consideration when reviewing your application activities section. Let us know all that you have occupied your time with during your social distancing. Your list is likely very different than is typical at this time of year but we will understand.”

Wednesday, March 25, 2020

A Message to all students (particularly seniors)


Governor Baker announced an extension of the school closure through May 4, 2020, at his press conference this afternoon. I will begin by saying that I have no intention of trying to relieve the real sense of loss this decision and this pandemic is causing.  As I said yesterday in my  blog we are living in a surreal time filled with uncertainty, fear, and our collective well-being is under attack, scared, frustrated, and perhaps even angry over the loss of things big and small. We would all be forgiven for succumbing to hopelessness, but we can’t.  

My heart hurts for all students, but it breaks for the great Class of 2020.  This is not the senior year you envisioned.  You undoubtedly have lots of questions, and we are short answers.  To combat this pandemic requires cooperation across the state, country, and globe, and a bi-product of this collective effort leaves answers outside of our control. 

The Governor and the education commissioner will provide guidance for us to follow.  I know you understand this is primarily out of our hands, but I also know there is no solace in that fact. These last few months of your pk-12 school experience were earmarked for culminating activities and the right of passage celebrations. Closing of school until May, seems unfair, and it hurts, and all the words in the world will not assuage those feelings.  

Although lacking in terms of comfort, I can promise you that someday in the future, we will call your name and I will hand you a diploma, and we will congratulate you on your achievement and applaud your resiliency. As we forge ahead on this uncertain path, we mourn, at the very least, the loss of March and April.  This is unfair, devastating, and unprecedented.  Take the evening to feel the sting of this loss.  Sleep to gather strength for the morning will come.  

Tomorrow, take the time to picture your future self describing this time in our nation’s history to a friend, your children, or grandchildren.  How will you tell them you passed this newfound time?  Did you sleep too much, play video games too much, use your phone too much?  Did you take your anger out on your loved ones?  

Or, did you deal with this hardship with grace and humility?  Did you use this time to sharpen your skills, learn something new, read more, exercise more, leverage the incredible technology in our hands to connect with friends, teachers, and loved ones?  Did you make the best of a bad situation? 

If I possessed a magic wand, I would end this pandemic tomorrow and return to normalcy, but I can’t.  One thing I do know is prior to this pandemic we were all, present company included, over-scheduled.  Change is never easy, and abrupt change even more challenging. Are you up for this challenge?  Will you come out on the other side a better person with a new skill?  Or someone bitter?  Will you describe yourself as someone who used their time to get healthy in both body and mind?  

In the moment, our feelings are rarely aligned with what is best for us.  We too often opt for what feels right now, or what is more comfortable; rather than doing what we know in our hearts will make us ALL the better in the future, and rarely does the term “ALL” encompass all of humanity.  

I listened to a Ted Talks Daily Podcast featuring Bill Gates. The richest man in the world who has dedicated his life since leaving Microsoft to harnessing technology to save lives. He described, in detail, how we missed our chance in February to curb this pandemic. It is not too late, but extreme measures (like closing schools for months on end) are needed to combat this pandemic. 

 Let’s not wait for horrific images on the news to adhere to the advice of health experts. Quarantine, and when this passes, come out the other side a better, more resilient, and more grateful person. I miss you all!

 Your Principal, 

 Michael J. Mastrullo

Tuesday, March 24, 2020

Principal's Blog: Radio Show at 10:00 today, Select Choir, Globe All-Scholastic Awards, and a thank you to our medical professionals

To lighten the mood today, we plan to host a radio show at 10:00 on We will welcome calls, play music, answer questions, and keep the broadcast light. News to nobody, but we are living in a surreal time filled with uncertainty, anxiety, and our collective well-being is under attack; worried about our health and the health of the ones we love. Scared, frustrated, and perhaps even angry over the loss of things big and small. We would all be forgiven for succumbing to hopelessness, but we won't. 

Resilience is a word often bantered about, and our present situation will test our resolve like never before. To the best of our ability, let's view this health crisis and all that comes along with it as a challenge. A challenge for our school, the three communities that comprise CCHS, our state, our country, and the planet. Do your best to focus on the things we can control and try not to waste your energy on things you cannot control. Know that your attitude will go a long way in supporting your well-being and the well-being of your loved ones. Laugh when you can and remind yourself that we will get through this.

As bad as things are, remind yourself that things could be worse. The phrase "life is hard" has never been more accurate, but life is good. Use this time to reflect on all the things we take for granted. Appreciate them. 

We are all in this together, and  I urge most earnestly that you will weigh the words of the medical professionals and practice social distancing and refrain from all unnecessary travel to a store or a friend's house. This is all temporary, and the more we work together now, the sooner it will subside. Use your time productively and use technology to stay connected to all those you love.  

I want to thank all the medical professionals and the first responders for their work to date and for their future efforts that will need to be heroic to get us through this pandemic. I want to recognize our students in the national guard, Aaron Tang, and Jonah DeMarco; if not for individuals like them willing to serve in times of crisis, we would all suffer greatly. I am sure there are others committed to serving in the National Guard, and I encourage you to share their names so I can recognize their efforts. Be well.

A few bits of good news to share below.  

Select Choir Recognition

Concord Carlisle HS Select Choir was chosen to perform at the 2020 MMEA (Mass. Music Educators Association) All-State Conference in March. This was the result of an application process in December that included the submission of live performances and recommendation letters. This is a tremendous honor for our Music Program and our communities. 

Only four ensembles of all types (band, orchestra, and chorus) and of all grade levels K-12, were chosen from the Commonwealth.   The performance was held Friday, March 6 at 1:45 pm in the Plaza Ballroom, at the Seaport Hotel in Boston.      

Congratulations to Ms.Deborah Smith and her students who worked hard to achieve this level of excellence!  The Select Choir is listed below.  

Performance Link

Vincent Babu
Samuel Lyczkowski
Ella Baker-Puttini
David Maar
True Becker
Luke McCrory
Margaret Besthoff
Bryce Mottershead
Margaret Bowers
Abigail Mueller
Maya Cunningham
Madeline Mueller
William Delise
Olivia Mueller
Jack Gorewitz
Laurel Sharakan
Piper Harring
Paula Vasiliadis
Julia Hubbard
Samantha Wilder
Lucy Joseph
Honor Williams

Globe All-Scholastic
The following athletes have been selected Globe All-Scholastics for winter.

William Chaffin, boys indoor track
Emma Kerimo, girls indoor track
Ella Nichol, girls nordic skiing
Isabella Synnestvedt, girls nordic skiing
Charles Reichle, boys swimming
Hannah Bruno, girls indoor track coach of the year

Monday, March 16, 2020

Principal's Blog: Three articles worth your time and attention


I hope you and your family are well during this surreal time in modern history that is a stark reminder of how quickly life can change.  Take care of yourself and those you love.  

I share three articles worth your time.  Please read them at your leisure, and take care of yourself.  


Michael J. Mastrullo

Giuseppe Raviola is an assistant professor of psychiatry and of global health and social medicine at Harvard Medical School and director of the Psychiatry Quality Program in the Department of Psychiatry at Children’s Hospital Boston (BCH)

Coronavirus Spread Simulator

Asaf Bitton MD, MPH | Executive Director | Ariadne Labs
Brigham and Women's Hospital | Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health

By Asaf Bitton
I know there is some confusion about what to do next in the midst of this unprecedented time of a pandemic, school closures, and widespread social disruption. I have been asked by a lot of people for my opinion, and I will provide it below based on the best information available to me today. This is my personal and well-informed opinion, and my take on the necessary steps ahead.

What I can say as a physician and public health leader, is that what we do, or don't do, over the next week will have a massive impact on the local and perhaps national trajectory of coronavirus. We are only about 11 days behind Italy and generally on track to repeat what is unfortunately happening there, as well as much of the rest of Europe very soon. At this point, containment through contact tracing and testing is only part of the necessary strategy. We must move to pandemic mitigation through widespread, uncomfortable, and comprehensive social distancing. That means not only shutting down schools, work (as much as possible), group gatherings, and public events. It also means making daily choices to stay away from each other as much as possible to Flatten The Curve (see below).

Our health system will not be able to cope with the projected numbers of people who will need acute care should we not muster the fortitude and will to socially distance each other starting now. On a regular day, we have about 45k ICU beds nationally, which can be ramped up in a crisis to about 93k. Even moderate projections suggest that if current infectious trends hold, our capacity (locally and nationally) may be overwhelmed as early as mid-late April. Thus, the only set of interlinked strategies that can get us off this concerning trajectory is to work together as a community to maintain public health by staying apart.

So what does this enhanced form of social distancing mean on a daily basis, when schools are cancelled?

I can suggest the following:

1. No playdates, parties, sleepovers, or families visiting each other's houses. This sounds extreme because it is. We are trying to create distance between family units and between individuals across those family units. It is uncomfortable, especially for families with small children or for kids who love to play with their friends. But even if you choose only one friend to have over, you are creating new links and possibilities for the type of transmission that all of our school/work/public event closures are trying to prevent. The symptoms of coronavirus take 4-5 days to manifest themselves. Someone who comes over looking well can transmit the virus. Sharing food is particularly risky - I definitely do not recommend that people do so outside of their family. We have already taken extreme social measures to address this serious disease - let's not actively co-opt our efforts by having high levels of social interaction at people's houses instead of the schools. Again - the wisdom of early and aggressive social distancing is that it can flatten the curve above, give our health system a chance to not be overwhlemed, and eventually may reduce the length and need for longer periods of extreme social distancing later (see what has transpired in Italy and Wuhan). We need to all do our part during these times, even if it means some discomfort.

2. Take walks/runs outside, but maintain distance (ideally 6 feet between people outside your family). Try not to use public facilities like playground structures as coronavirus can live on plastic and metal for up to 3 days, and these structures aren't getting regularly cleaned. Try not to have physical contact with people outside of your family. Going outside will be important during these strange times, and the weather is improving. Go outside every day if you can but stay physically away from others. Try not to have kids play with each other (even outside) if that means direct physical contact. Even basketball or soccer involve direct contact and cannot be recommended. If people wish to go outside and have a picnic with other families, I strongly recommend keeping distance of at least 6 feet, not sharing any food at all, and not having direct physical contact. Invariably, that is hard with kids, so these shared, "distant" picnics may be tricky. Do not visit nursing homes or other areas where large numbers of the elderly reside, as they are at highest risk for complications and mortality from coronavirus. We need to find alternate ways to reduce social isolation in these communities through virtual means instead of physical in-person visits.

3. Reduce the frequency of going to stores/restaurants/coffee shops for the time being. Of course trips to the grocery store will be necessary, but try to limit them and go at times when less busy. Consider wearing gloves (not medical - but perhaps washable) and of course washing hands before and after really well. Leave the medical masks and gloves for the medical professionals - we need them. Maintain social distance from folks. Take-out meals and food are riskier than making food at home given the links between the people who prepare food, transport the food, and you. It is hard to know how much that risk is, but it is is certainly higher than making it at home.

4. If you are sick, definitely stay home and contact a medical professional. If you are sick, you should try isolate yourself from the rest of your family within your house as best as you can. If you have questions about whether you qualify or should get a coronavirus test, you can call you primary care team and/or consider calling the Partners Health Care hotline staffed 8AM-8PM every day - 617 724 7000, or the Massachusettes department of public health at 617 983 6800. Don't just walk in to an ambulatory clinic - call first. Obviously if it is an emergency call 911.

5. We need to push our local, state, and national leaders to close ALL schools, events, gatherings, and public spaces now. A local, town by town response won't have the needed effect. We need a statewide, nationwide approach in these trying times. Contact your representative and the governor to urge them to enact statewide closures. As of today, 6 states had already done so. We should be one of them. Also urge them to fund emergency preparedness and make increasing coronavirus testing capacity an immediate and top priority.

I realize there is a lot built into these suggestions, and that they represent a real burden for many people, businesses, and communities. Social distancing is hard and may negatively impact others, especially those who face vulnerablities in our society. I recognize that there is structural and social inequity built in and around social distancing recommendations. We can and must take steps to bolster our community response to people who face food insecurity, domestic violence, and housing challenges, along with the many other social inequities.

I also realize that not everyone can do everything. But we have to try our absolute best as a community, starting today. It is a public health imperative. If we don't do this now voluntarily, it will become necessary later involuntarily, when the potential benefits will be much less than doing so right now.

Friday, February 28, 2020

Multi-Cultural Food Festival, Mr. Joy, Kalise Wynter, Track, MVP, Music Awards, ADL, Squash Team, & More

 “Alone, we can do so little; together, we can do so much” – Helen Keller.  

There is little more important than building community.   Lacking a sense of community can be a formidable barrier to progress, be it at a school, town or city. Our community rallied to support each other in the face of terrible tragedy.  Communities are built to care for one another and to provide supports in difficult times and in moments of grief.  Caring and comforting one another is critical to the healing process.  

Communities gather to grieve, and it is well understood by psychologists and social scientists that people who eat together, who laugh together, and who gather together for social functions generally have stronger feelings of empathy and bonding. It is with this in mind that I invite you to a community event at CCHS. 

When: 4 March 

Where: CCHS

What: Multi-cultural Food Festival (5:30 - 6:45) & Mr. Joy (Doors open at 6:30 & show starts at 7:00)

The CCHS Class Government would like to invite all members of our community to participate in a celebration of our cultural differences. On Wednesday, March 4th from 5:30-6:45 pm, we will hold The Multicultural Food Festival in the CCHS cafeteria.  

This event will use food as a vehicle to celebrate and learn about our differences. Additionally, there will be several culturally specific student performances. Last year was an amazing success with over 80 different families, faculty and staff providing food and 500 people attending.

In order to make this event a success, WE NEED YOUR HELP!!!   The teachers, staff, and community members will gather to celebrate the cultural differences within our community.

Signup to bring in a dish that represents your cultural identity.  Culture can be defined broadly. Whether you have a cultural affinity from being a recent immigrant, your family immigrating generations ago, your religion, having lived in another country or just have fallen in love with a specific culture, we want you! If you are willing to bring food please fill out the google form by clicking this link: 

If you are unable to bring a dish, please mark your calendars and come and enjoy the festival on the evening of Thursday, March 4th. Bring the whole family, there is no cost.

For those who sign up to bring food, we will follow up in a separate email with further information and details. 

Thank You, 

CCHS Class Government 

Mr. Joy Neighborhood Tour
Mr. Joy's "Neighborhood Tour" is coming to CCHS on Wednesday evening March 4th (doors open at 6:30pm). ArtsEmerson presents the 4th annual Mr. Joy: The Neighborhood Tour, a series of free theatre performances of Daniel Beaty’s Mr. Joy, a play that explores issues of race and class in America to help us find our common humanity.  To reserve your free spot click here.

Funding for Mr. Joy is made possible by METCOIncHq, and a grant provided by BASI and Outside the Box/Act Two, and ArtsEmerson.  Also, I want to thank METCO Director, Andrew Nyamekye, for his efforts to make this possible.  

Scholarship Award
Please join us in congratulating Kalise Wynter, METCO Class of 2021, for being awarded a grand scholarship of $10,000 by METCO Inc. The Summer Science Camp scholarship will provide Kalise an opportunity to study marine life on the island of Eleuthera in the Bahamas this summer. There are more details on the flyer below.

Congratulations to the Girls Indoor Track Team for winning the State Championship! An amazing team! 

The Boys Team performed well led by Will Chaffin who holds the fastest time in the state this year.

Mentors in Violence Prevention
Twenty-nine CCHS students participated in a 2-day Mentors in Violence Prevention (MVP) Training November 21 and 22 in which participants learned concrete tools for confronting, interrupting and preventing gender-based violence. By empowering participants through a unique bystander approach to prevention, 

MVP enables communities to stand up against all forms of gender-based violence and challenges participants to understand and embrace their roles as leaders when faced with these issues.  The goal is for the participants to become peer leaders in preventing physical violence, sexual harassment, sexual assault and heterosexism/homophobia in the school community.  Many of the MVP trained students will be sharing what they learned with parents at an evening event in late January/early February and will conduct similar 1-day training for 8th graders in March. 

The 2-day MVP training was facilitated by CCHS teachers Matt Goldberg and Nancy Slocum, who also run the MVP Club at CCHS.  We are grateful for Matt's participation this year, and we owe a special thank you to Nancy Slocum for making this program thrive at the high school, and her efforts have brought this important initiative to the middle school as well.

WHAT: This student-centered design competition will gather thinkers, creators, and change-makers from all corners of CCHS to address one of the most pressing concerns of our time: youth mental health and digital overload. During this in-house field trip, students of any stripe get a chance to design with and deeply understand their peers, to dream up scores of ideas, and to create innovative new solutions rooted in student’s actual needs. Prizes will be awarded in several categories.

WHO: All are welcome, but the first 25 students to sign up will be awarded a spot in the competition. Join as a team (up to 4 people) or as individuals.

WHEN: March 9th (lunch) and March 12th (all day) 


HOWJoin the movement! is running similar design competitions at Brown, Dartmouth, and the Universities of San Diego, Arizona, Southern California, and Holy Names.  CCHS is the first high school to take part in the design competition.

ABOUT: CCHS has partnered with, a trailblazing nonprofit that is sparking a social movement that empowers students to reverse the negative effects of digital overload and the pressure of 24/7 connectivity (e.g. less sleep, less focus, more anxiety, more social isolation) find balance, and embrace the joy of simply being human. Because youth agency is at the heart of their mission and an essential part of their programmatic DNA, doesn’t tell youth what to do. They ask them.  

English Dept. Writing Contest
The English Department congratulates the following students selected as this year's winners of the department's annual writing contest for juniors.  

Juniors: Rachel Dettelbach and Claire Sun 

Rachel and Claire will go on to compete at the national level in the contest sponsored by the National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE) -- the Achievement Awards in Writing.  

The results of the national contest are announced in May.  The English department recognizes all the students who participated in the school's contest.  As juniors, they have all been recognized by the department for their depth of insight, for their originality of expression, and for their overall achievements in writing.

Mass. Music Educators Association All-State Conference

The Concord-Carlisle HS Select Choir has been chosen to perform at the 2020 Mass. Music Educators Association All-State Conference in March. This was the result of an application process in December that included the submission of live performances and recommendation letters. This is a tremendous honor for the CCHS Music Program and our communities. Only four ensembles of all types (band, orchestra,, and chorus) and of all grade levels K-12, were chosen from the Commonwealth.  Congratulations to these students who have worked so hard to achieve this level of excellence!  The performance is scheduled for Friday, March 6 at 1:45 pm in the Plaza Ballroom, at the Seaport Hotel in Boston.

Further, we are pleased to announce that the CCHS Music Department has 18 students that have been named to Massachusetts Music Educators Association (MMEA) All-State Concert Band, Chorus and Orchestra. These students will join others from around the Commonwealth in rehearsals at the Seaport Hotel/World Trade Center on March 5-6th, culminating in a performance at Boston’s Symphony Hall on March 7th.  

We are incredibly proud of these highly motivated and talented students. This distinction is one that not many high school students achieve and is a result of their dedication to their craft and their progression through the District and State audition process. Please take a moment to congratulate them when you see them!
David Gresko and Deb Smith

Anti-Defamation League Anti-Bias Peer Trainers

Thirty-five students from the sophomore, junior, and senior classes engaged in their first day of training to become Anti-Defamation League Anti-Bias Peer Trainers. This was the first of a three-day training where students engage in thoughtful conversation, activities, and reflection in order to later facilitate discussions with their peers in the sophomore advisories. The program challenges the community to think about topics like racism and bias in order to create a more inclusive, safe school. It was a challenging but very fun and successful day. We look forward to our next training day in February.

CCHS Squash Team
By Pam Goar

We had a great season and enjoyed our time at Nationals. The CC students had fun at the tournament and they competed hard and performed well. We played at 3 different venues around Hartford, CT.

Later in the spring, we are going to hold a "Learn about Squash" event at the Concord Acton Squash Club. We will open it up to rising 9th-graders and all CC students.

We will miss our six graduation players this year. Izzy Frangules and May Goar played all 4 years. Kelly Costello, Elsa Couvillion, Morgan Labadini and Aliana Potter played 3 years.

We have 16 players planning on returning next year and we are excited about another successful season. 

CCHS Weather Services Club 
Theresa Ruggerio and Stephen Lane along with the CCHS Weather Services Club attended and presented in front of industry experts at the 100th Annual American Meteorological Society meeting in Boston. 

Other presenters included Raytheon, college-level weather clubs, and even NASA (yes, THE NASA!). I heard so much enthusiasm on the part of the students in regard to the presentations they made, as well as the connections with industry professionals and the possibility of summer internships. 

Saturday, February 15, 2020

Principal's Blog: Thank You, Well Wishes, and Resources


I write to wish you and your family a fantastic break filled with lots of memories.  The school-work free break hopefully makes space for that to occur.  Further, I want to draw your attention to my correspondence with the entire school, and Dr. Hunter's correspondence to all members of the CCHS educational community.  Both come with a deep appreciation for all the support provided to so many in need over the last few weeks.  


As we all leave for the break, I want to share a heartfelt thank you for a school community that demonstrated their care for one another over the past few weeks. It is always important to care for one another, but ensuring CCHS is a kind, welcoming place where everyone feels supported is never more critical than when we are grieving; one of many reasons CCHS is a remarkable school.

We hope vacation provides a well-deserved respite, and time spent with family and friends is filled with fun and laughter. If, however, there is a time that you need or a friend needs help, please talk with a trusted adult. Everyone needs help sometimes, and those connections will provide needed support.

For some the change in routine is hard, and support does not seem as readily available.  We wanted to be sure that help was accessible through the upcoming week.  


Michael J. Mastrullo

Dr. Hunter's Correspondence

 Dear Families:

 We reach the break with gratitude for what community brings to us.  The past two weeks brought a sense of togetherness that I have heard in ongoing conversations, ideas, and acts of support to one another.  This, undoubtedly, strengthens us in good times and bad.

 The upcoming week will be one of travel, joy, respite and relaxation.  Sometimes, though, the change in routine is hard and support does not seem as easily available if needed.  We wanted to be sure that support was accessible through the upcoming week.  

Riverside Trauma Center recommends two primary options in the community in addition to your own private providers.  They are:

24-hour emergency and crisis support

Eliot Center, Concord 
Counseling Services
(978) 369-1113 ask for an intake

Enjoy the time with family and friends.  Please do not hesitate to reach out with questions or concerns. 


Dr. Laurie Hunter, Superintendent

Friday, January 31, 2020

Important Update

Dear Parents/Guardians,

I am writing to provide a brief update on the tragic news shared early this morning and to provide information on support available at CCHS this weekend.  

Today staff members from CPS, CCHS, and Carlisle went to each class to notify students and staff of the dreadful news.  We had a team of people supporting students and staff.  We remain in close contact with the family, and they are so gracious and kind while dealing with grief beyond words.  Our thoughts are with them.

Below is correspondence from Dr. Hunter that includes resources and information about this weekend.  

Take care of yourself and each other.


Michael Mastrullo

Dear Community, 
The recent death of our student, Chase Bjork,  has impacted many if not all of us in some way. This is a tragedy for the Bjork family, for our school and for our community, and we are all deeply saddened by what has happened. We are grieving the loss of one of our own.
Support for anyone in need is being offered in multiple forms: 
  • There will be Open Hours at CCHS on Saturday, Feb. 1, from 11 AM - 1 PM and Sunday, February 2, from 2 PM - 4 PM with counselors present for anyone (students, parents, faculty, and community members).

  • The bottom of this message has a list of Mental Health Resources for Youth and Families.
  • The school is working closely with the Riverside Community Care, a Department of Mental Health funded organization that provides support to schools and communities following suicides. They are helping us to plan student support groups, conduct staff training and provide more resources for parents. More information will be forthcoming.
  • Counselors and teachers at the schools are providing ongoing support to students. This support will continue over the coming days and weeks.
  • More supports and training will be available through the Center for Parents and Teachers, the Parent Teacher Groups, and Riverside Community Care. 
This is a time for our community to grieve and there are no easy answers. We need to be accessible to one another and to truly listen when someone opens up to us. In short, we need to be here for each other during this difficult time.

Dr. Laurie Hunter, Superintendent

Mental Health Services for Youth and Families
This list of resources is presented in an attempt to provide options for those seeking assistance. 
Their mention herein does not necessarily indicate the endorsement of Concord-Carlisle High School. 

CCHS Guidance Dept. (978)341-2941 or (978)341-2924 
Emerson Hospital (978) 369-1400
Advocates 800-640-5432 (mobile risk assessment service)
Concord Emergency Services (police & fire dispatch) (978)318-3400
Domestic Violence Victim Assistance Program (800)799-7233
Elliot Community Health Services (800)988-1111 
Concord Health Department (978)318-3275
William James College Interface, Help-Line, Website:;  617-332-3666,  x 411

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline (800)273-TALK (24 hr.) 
National Hope Line Network (800)442-HOPE (4673)
Covenant House Nine Line (800) 999-9999 
Boston Emergency Screening Team (800) 981-HELP 
Boston Area Rape Crisis Center (800) 841-8371 
Fenway Community Health Center Peer Listening Line 
(Hotline for GLBT teens) (800) 399-7337 
Samaritans Teen Line (For Teens Only) (800) 525-TEEN (24hrs.) 

Riverside Emergency Services Team 24-hr Crisis Line:  (800) 529-5077 
Parental Stress Line (800) 632-8188 (24 hrs.) 
Samaritans Hotline (617) 247-0220 (24 hrs.) 
Riverside Outpatient Center (617) 969-4925 

MA Substance Abuse Information and Education Help Line (800) 327-5050 
Substance Abuse Treatment Referral (800) 662-HELP 
Alcoholics Anonymous (Boston) (617) 426-9444 
Al-Ateen 508-366-0556