Friday, February 24, 2023

Spring Sports Registration, Art Awards, Athletics, New Bell Schedule


We hope your February vacation is off to a great start. Whether you are somewhere warm and sunny, on the ski slopes, or enjoying time at home we hope everyone is getting lots of rest, relaxing downtime, and spending quality time with family and friends. Our school breaks always come at perfect times and everyone deserves a little rest. Many of our sports teams have been busy over the break and have achieved some excellent and noteworthy accomplishments. It's hard to believe we are approaching the month of March in just a few days. Enjoy the rest of your break and we look forward to seeing to back at CCHS on the 27th!

Spring Sports Registration Deadline

Registration for spring sports is happening now! The deadline to register is March 14. Please remember there are no late registrations accepted.

Scholastic Art Awards

Please congratulate CCHS’ 11 winners from the Scholastic Art Awards! You can view the winner’s artwork here.

Michelle Gu, Smoke Signals, Honorable Mention

Ren Cattafe, Anxious Comfort, Silver Key

Erin Gage, Trapped in Daydreams, Silver Key

Sally Stevens, Butterfly in a Garden, Silver Key

Sophia Annunziata, Unnatural, Honorable Mention

Lucia Eckler, Protege, Gold Key

Aiden Moroney, Anonymous, Honorable Mention

All Whalen, Death and Decay, Silver Key

Adam Foulds, Sunrise Snowplow, Gold Key

Michael Fink, Invasive Plastic, Gold Key

Lucas Milliken, Triple Caution, Silver Key

CCHS Girls Nordic Ski Team

A HUGE congratulations to our Girls Nordic Ski Team for clinching the State Championship (again)! Way to go!

CCHS Boys Hockey

Congratulations to CCHS Boys Hockey for their victory over Bedford High School on Saturday, February 18. 

CCHS Wrestling

Congratulations to Jonathan Charles (3rd place), Joe Lavery (6th place), and Eddie Myles (8th place)! CCHS Wrestling finished 9th as a team! Best of luck to Jonathan and Joe, who will compete next Friday and Saturday at the All-State Tournament in Reading, MA.

CCHS Track and Field

Congratulations CCHS Track and Field for their excellent 2nd place finish in the Division Two State Championship!! Great job CCTF!!

Congratulations to senior, Obi Akubude, who was D1 State Champ in the 300 m and 55 m hurdles. Girl's track finished 2nd overall in D1. 

Girl’s Swim

Congratulations to the girl's swim team, who won the North Sectional for the 1st time in school history! They finished 4th in state, overall!

Boys Hoop and Hockey

Congratulations to the boys’ hoop and hockey who qualified for the state tournament starting next week, February 27!


The CCHS Fencing team will compete in the state championship on Sunday, February 26 in Boston. Good luck to the CCHS Fencing team!!

Alpine Ski

The Alpine Ski state championships will be held on Tuesday, February 28. Henry Flint, Drew Callen for the boy's team, and Eliza Todd and Delaney Remington for the girls, are competing. Good luck to all of our skiers!!

New Winter Sports

CCHS has added cheerleading and gymnastics this winter as new sports. For any athletic information, please visit our Athletics website here

New Bell Schedule Announcement for the 2023-2024 School Year

As you know, we are thrilled to announce that we will have a new bell schedule for the 2023-2024 school year. If you missed our webinar on February 15th you can check it out here. And if you missed our original blog post about the new bell schedule, you can find it here.

Wednesday, February 8, 2023

New Bell Schedule Announcement for the 2023-2024 School Year


We are excited to announce that we will have a new bell schedule for the 2023-2024 academic year.  This schedule is the first major change to the bell schedule at CCHS in 20+ years.  We believe the new schedule will better meet the current needs of students and staff and are proud of where things landed.


The current bell schedule has many embedded challenges. Some of these challenges include:

  • Not all students have lunch every day.
  • There is no time built into the school day for every student to get extra help from teachers, make-up work, or complete homework. This creates more stress at home and reduces the amount of sleep students get each night.
  • The pace of the day for students and teachers is incredibly fast-paced within the current schedule.
  • In four out of five days, the same block is first, and in four out of five days, the same block is last, creating inequitable learning experiences among sections.
  • Some classes meet four times a week for a longer period and some meet five times a week for a short period, making it hard to plan and create continuity among sections.


The CCHS Administration, Leadership Team, and Faculty started work to develop a new bell schedule in early 2020.  However, in March 2020, COVID required us to shift our focus.  

Last spring (May 2022), faculty and staff members re-engaged with the work by creating a Bell Schedule committee to develop different sample drafts.  Throughout the process, the committee, the Administration, Leadership Team, and the Concord-Carlise Teachers Association (CCTA) met with students, teachers, and Administrators from other Districts (Lexington, Newton, Winchester) who had highly positive experiences with flex blocks and the benefits it brought to their school communities.  After sharing several iterations and drafts with the whole faculty, various attributes were compared and contrasted, and those with the most support were further developed.

Benefits and Attributes 

We are confident that the new bell schedule will benefit students and staff.  

Flex Blocks

One of the most significant benefits to our schedule is the addition of two 56-min flex blocks per week.  While we are still working out the exact logistics of these blocks, these will be a time when students can schedule themselves to meet with a teacher to get extra help, collaborate with a classmate, make up a test, go to the band room for extra practice, enjoy time in the gym, read a book in the library or complete homework in a classroom.  Additionally, flex blocks will be a time when a teacher can require a student to come for extra help to either clarify a misconception or provide a small-group and focused learning experience.

We will seek feedback from students and staff over the coming months regarding flex blocks.  The goal of flex blocks is to create time and space for students to get more work done during the school day and reduce the overall burden once they get home.


Lunch will no longer be a block to be scheduled in the day, and all students and staff will have lunch every day.  There will be two main lunches (first lunch, 11:00 - 11:41 am, and last lunch, 12:00 - 12:41 pm).  Students will be assigned their lunch block based on the class/department adjacent to lunch on that given day.  For example, if a student has a D block English class, they will have first lunch on Monday and Wednesday, and if the same student has an E block Math class, they will have last lunch on Tuesday and Thursday, and if the student has F block Social Studies, they will have first lunch on Friday.  The example above is shown in the diagram below in red font.

The result of this method is that all students will have lunch every day.

Consistent Block Length and Rotation

While it might seem like a small matter, the consistency of block length across all five days simplifies processes and reduces cognitive load.  Additionally, in the new schedule, there is a more equitable rotation between the first blocks of the day and the last blocks of the day.  

Early Release

While not shown in the above bell schedule, we will have an early monthly release for high school students on Wednesdays (roughly 1:15 PM Dismissal).  We are still refining these details but roughly once per month, students will be dismissed early.

Student Stress

Our goals and beliefs are that the new schedule will reduce student stress by providing flex blocks during the week and having increased consistency throughout the week. Additionally, there are multiple days during the week where only four blocks meet which reduces the amount of homework required on the previous nights.


In our new schedule, there is no advisory.  This time has been included in our Flex Blocks. We remain committed to providing Social-Emotional learning experiences for all of our students.  We are already in discussions with our Guidance and Counseling department to discuss opportunities and ways in which this can happen.  We believe that the increased time students may spend with a teacher or adult in the building during flex blocks will help them to have more and deeper connections with adults throughout the building. We will continue to have discussions to seek feedback and input.


If you have any questions or comments regarding the new schedule, please enter them on this google form.  We will continue to provide updates about the new bell schedule as we revise details, and we will do our best to answer all of these questions in future communications.

Below is a recording of the presentation and slide deck that we did for students:

Recording - February 8, 2023.  Also, here is the slide deck we used to present.

We will also be hosting a presentation and zoom for students and parents/guardians on Wednesday, February 15, 2023, at 7:00 PM. 

Topic: New Schedule Presentation.
Please click here to join the webinar. Passcode: 517311


We know that transitions can be hard, particularly for teenagers.  We also recognize that change can be challenging when it is something as entrenched in school culture as a bell schedule.  However, we firmly believe that the new schedule will create a better learning environment and decrease stress for all students. We are incredibly excited and confident about the possibilities the future will bring for our community.

Sunday, February 5, 2023

Principal's Blog: February 5, 2023

Black History Month

Periodic Table of Black History created by Dr. Mike Vela and Rebecca Bryant-Gates, CCHS Science Department!

As February begins, we are reminded of the significance of Black History Month and the important role it plays in celebrating and honoring the contributions and achievements of African Americans.

At CCHS, we strive to create an inclusive environment where every student feels a sense of belonging and respect, regardless of their background or differences. Celebrating Black History Month is an important part of this effort, as it helps to educate and bring awareness of the rich cultural heritage of African Americans and promote understanding and unity among all members of our school community. These achievements should not only be celebrated in February but every day.
Throughout February, every department at our school will be intentionally celebrating the achievements and contributions of Black people. This will not only provide a platform for educating our students about Black history and culture but also help to create a sense of pride and empowerment for our Black students. Whether its the daily slides shared in our classrooms or on our campus-wide TVs highlighting achievements of people like Mildred Loving, Ibtihaj Muhammad, or Laverne Cox, or learning about Black athletes of color in Health and Fitness, or famous Black mathematicians and scientists in their respective fields, all students will learn about the rich cultural heritage of African Americans in our society. Additionally, we have spent a lot of time meeting with and listening to the concerns of our Black and Brown students over the last year. We have made great strides in creating additional opportunities and support throughout our community to make sure all students feel seen and heard. In the Spring of 2024, we are thrilled to be offering a new course, Bringing Black History to CCHS, which is something our students have been desiring for a while. We are excited to finally make this a reality.
Black History Month is not only about remembering and celebrating the past, but also about recognizing African Americans' ongoing struggles and triumphs in our society today. By taking the time to reflect on and appreciate the contributions and accomplishments of Black individuals, we can help to create a sense of pride and empowerment for our Black students and inspire them to reach their full potential.

In addition to educating our students about Black history and culture, it is also essential for us as a school community to actively work to address and overcome any biases or prejudices that may still exist. By promoting diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging in all aspects of our school life at CCHS and among our students, we can help to create an environment where all students feel valued and respected.

New Courses at CCHS

We are thrilled to bring several new courses to CCHS next year! There is something for everyone and we are hoping our students take advantage of these fantastic new offerings. Our new courses include: Bringing Black History to CCHS, The Classical Age: Founding Myths, Revolutions: 1789 to the present, The Human Body, The Science of Food and Cooking, Advanced Earth Science: Geology, JROTC: Army 1, Advanced Sculpture, 9th Grade Band, and Explorations: Musicianship Workshop. Please check out more details about these courses here.

Rivers Information Night

Rivers Zoom Info Session, Tuesday, February 7 at 7:30 pm. Please click HERE to register. Questions? Email

CCHS on TV - High School Quiz Show

Please tune in to GBH-2 this Saturday at 6 PM as Concord Carlisle takes on Melrose in the opening

round of the High School Quiz Show.

All-State Auditions

On Saturday, January 21st, musicians from Concord-Carlisle High School's bands, choirs, and orchestras attended the Massachusetts Music Educators Association's (MMEA) All-State Festival Auditions at Shrewsbury HS. These students were selected from the top 50% of those accepted to the MMEA Eastern District's Senior Festival and competed against their peers from across the Commonwealth for a spot in one of the highly selective ensembles that will perform at Symphony Hall later this year.

Approximately 40-50% of auditioning students are accepted for this honor each year. Concord-Carlisle far-surpassed this metric with an unbelievable 94% of students accepted to the All-State Festival. The concert will be held on Saturday, March 4th at Symphony Hall in Boston and is open to the public.

Later in January, on the 28th, several of our 9th-grade musicians auditioned for the MMEA Eastern District Junior Festival at Needham HS. Out of the 765 students that auditioned from the 30 cities and towns in our district, only 382 were accepted. This concert will be held on Saturday, March 11th at Lincoln-Sudbury HS and is open to the public.

The CCHS Music Department is incredibly proud of these students and their holistic approach to the audition: focusing on the experience, the opportunity for personal growth, and the journey over destination and outcome.

Please join us in congratulating the students listed below for their hard work! They represented our community magnificently!


# = Principal/First-Chair

2023 All-State Orchestra

Anthony Babu, '26 - Trumpet

Raymond Chan, '24 - Bass

Carson Enes, '24 - Bass Clarinet #

Sofia Hughes, '26 - Flute

Brandon Li, '24 - Clarinet

Benjamin Lyczkowski, '24 - Trumpet #

Maya McCabe, '24 - Violin

Sophie Richardson, '23 - Trombone #

2023 All-State Concert Band

Theodore Collins, '25 - Trombone

Samuel Richman, '24 - Alto Saxophone

Ian Wolossow, '23 - Percussion

2023 All-State Choir

Alessandra Giragos, '23

Benjamin Pixley, '25

Marina Ricker, '24

Noah Zall, '24


# = Accepted to Festival

Sophie Hong, '23 - Violin #

Abigail Krinicich, '23 - Violin #

Ryan Ma, '23 - Violin

Gabrial McCauley, '23 - Clarinet #

Elise McMorrow, '23 - Trumpet

Leah Greenberg

Leah joined BSA (Boy Scouts) in 2019, and the first-year girls were allowed to join. She is the first female in Concord to achieve the prestigious rank of Eagle Scout.

Inspired by her cousin’s stories about Boy Scouting, as a kid, she signed petitions for girls to be allowed in and was overjoyed when she could finally join a troop. Because Concord does not yet have a troop for girls, she joined Troop 12 in Acton. Over three years, she earned over 21 merit badges, such as First Aid, Hiking, Cycling, and Citizenship in the Community. She won National Outdoor Awards for Hiking, Camping, and Riding (cycling). She organized an American History Trip that involved cycling, canoeing, and walking throughout Concord and solving puzzles at each site. She also participated in numerous leadership positions and was the first elected Senior Patrol Leader for Troop 12. Her year in this leadership position involved overseeing and planning troop activities and running weekly troop meetings.

During her three years in the troop, it grew from approximately ten scouts to about thirty today,
including five scouts from Concord. She did much camping and hiking with the troop, such as a
week-long hiking trip on the Appalachian Trail in New Hampshire and a week canoeing in the
Allagash Wilderness Waterway with Maine High Adventure. Her Eagle Scout Project, which she
completed in the spring of 2022, involved leading a group of volunteers to construct and fill
vegetable planter boxes for First Parish in Concord, followed by a planting day for the religious
education program. She continues to be involved in the troop as an Assistant Scoutmaster.
Congratulations Leah!

Leah Greenberg with Anna Campbell at their Court of Honor. They are the first female Eagle Scouts for Concord and Acton.

Lunar New Year 2023

Happy Chinese New Year! January 22, 2023, marks the beginning of a New Year -- the Lunar New Year. This day is also known as the Chinese New Year. Separately, we also bid farewell to the Year of the Tiger and welcome the Year of the Rabbit.

CCHS staff member Bo Feng made this piece using a wood-burning technique  (pyrography) that is truly awe-inspiring.  Needless to say, in addition to being a great teacher, Bo is an amazing artist.

Troop 132, Coats for Kids & Families, CCHS Coat Drive

Concord Scout Troop 132 would like to thank the Concord-Carlisle High School community for its support of the 2022-23 Coat Drive. With your help, we collected 61 coats this year. That's 61 people whose winters will be a little warmer, thanks to your generosity. Coats were cleaned by Anton's Cleaners in Wayland and then distributed to local non-profits, schools, and social service agencies throughout New England. We would also like to thank Ms. Hammer very much for her guidance. If you were not able to donate a coat this year, no worries! You can still donate money to support Coats for Kids & Families' efforts at Donate - Coats for Kids and Families. Thank you again for all of your contributions, and see you next year!

-Grady Flinn, Class of 2025, Concord Scout Troop 132

Alessandra Giragos

On October 23, 2022, Be Here and Be Well and Concord Festival of Authors, presented the Concord Young Writers Award (CYWA) 2022, with guest judge Yung Pueblo, NYT's #1 Best Selling Author. It is with great excitement to announce that Alessandra Giragos, Class of 2023, was personally selected by Yung Pueblo as the winner of the Concord Young Writers Award for 2022! Congratulations, Alessandra and all the CCHS students who submitted their work for this event! 

About the Event:

The CYWA was co-created by Be Well Be Here founder and Concord Festival of Authors curator Lara Wilson, with Concord Public Schools DEI Director, Andrew Nyamekye. Diego Perez, known by 2.3 million Instagram followers as Yung Pueblo, discussed his new book, Lighter, as well as shared mindful wisdom that inspires us all to seek ease, engage in radical honesty, cultivate caring relationships, and show up for one another for the benefit of us all. The name Yung Pueblo means "young people," and it serves to remind him of his Ecuadorian roots, his experiences in activism, and that the collective of humanity is in the midst of important growth. Through writing and speaking, he aims to support the healing of the individual, realizing that when we release our personal burden, we contribute to global peace.

Lara Wilson, Alessandra Giragos, Yung Pueblo

Debate Team Updates

At the Newton South Winter Festival debates on Saturday, January 7, CCHS Debaters had a very successful day, clearing to elimination debates and qualifying three teams for the Massachusetts State Tournament in April.

In novice public forum debate, the team of Caroline Haskell & Noah Arthur were undefeated in the 5 preliminary rounds and won the final elimination round to take FIRST place in the novice competition. Along with Lucy Butler & Evan Moffitt, Caroline & Noah also qualified for states. CCHS also earned 4 speaker awards in Novice: Caroline Haskell (1st), Noah Arthur (5th), Evan Wang (6th) and Chengzhe (Kevin) Jiang (7th).

In the varsity public forum debate, the team of Wilbur Moffitt & Addy Richardson continued their winning ways with a state qualification and speaker awards to Wilbur (4th) and Addy (10th) in a field of 77 debaters.

CCHS Debaters Compete at Big Lexington: Arthur and Haskell Continue Winning Streak

CCHS Debate sent 6 teams to the most competitive tournament of the year so far, “Big Lexington,” on January 14 & 15. The tournament attracted the finest debaters from all over the country, and we had a great educational experience in addition to celebrating the great success of Noah Arthur & Caroline Haskell, who excelled for the second consecutive week. They had a record of 5 wins and 1 loss in preliminary debates and then won octofinals and quarterfinals before losing in semifinals, tying for 3rd place in a field of 60.

The rest of the team also had a great tournament: Competing in Public Forum Debate were Evan Wang & Lucy Butler, Anthony Babu & Chengzhe (Kevin) Jiang, April Tang & Sarafina Zhang, and Evan Moffitt & Addy Richardson. Felicity Zhang competed for the first time in Lincoln-Douglas debate, a one-on-one event based on philosophical argumentation.

CCHS Continues Winning Streak at Boston Latin School

For the third consecutive week, CCHS Debate had success, this time at the Keith West Memorial Tournament, held at Boston Latin School on Saturday, January 21. Each week, it appears that our teams take turns in distinguishing themselves, and on Saturday, the team of Chengzhe (Kevin) Jiang & Sarafina Zhang qualified for elimination rounds and placed 5th in the entire tournament. Sarafina was 10th speaker, Evan Wang was 7th speaker, and Kevin Jiang was 1st place speaker in the tournament!

All four of our teams qualified for the Massachusetts State Tournament this spring: Kevin & Sarafina, Lucas Leonard & George Schweitzer, Lucy Butler & Evan Wang, and Noah Arthur & Caroline Haskell.