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Fenway Pays A Visit To Oldfield Middle School

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Students at Oldfield Middle School were a slobbery kiss away from a good day on Nov. 17 as Fenway, a two-year-old Golden Retriever, yellow Labrador mix, made her way around backpacks and desks to sit on students’ laps. Students were greeted with a tail wag and in return left with a positive attitude. 

This unprecedented school year has brought many changes to the Harborfields School District, and with it, added stress. To help alleviate those anxieties, Teaching Assistant Sarah Zagaja has brought her certified therapy dog to the school on several occasions to meet some of the students.  

In fact, Fenway was due to be trained as a PTSD dog with America’s VetDogs; however, after realizing that she was frightened of loud noises, Ms. Zagaja spent three months training her in accordance with the Alliance of Therapy Dogs.

Ms. Zagaja described Fenway as “gentle” and “sensitive,” noting that she has the unique ability to recognize when a person is anxious or stressed and connects with them on a personal level—all qualities that make her the perfect therapy dog. 


Students Celebrate ‘Read to Feed’ at TJL

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Harborfields students at Thomas J. Lahey Elementary School recently participated in a week-long “Read to Feed” event in celebration of World Kindness Day on Nov. 13. 

The event, a partnership between Harborfields Alliance For Community Outreach, the school’s Parent Teachers Association and the TJL No Place for Hate Committee, encouraged students to read books on the topic of kindness. To kick off the event on Nov. 9, students enjoyed listening to a read-aloud of the book, “Each Kindness,” by Jacqueline Woodson.

Additionally, throughout the week, students, faculty and staff donated non-perishable food items to benefit HACO’s annual Thanksgiving Food Drive.

On Nov.13, students dressed in yellow to represent kindness throughout the school, a color selected by the 20 student members of the TJL No Place for Hate Committee. That evening, students and their families enjoyed a culminating virtual read-in event, during which Principal Mary Williams and Assistant Principal Andrea Horowitz, joined by Assistant Superintendent for Curriculum and Instruction Dr. Rory Manning and PTA Executive Board member Kim Bykov, read, ‘The Cool Bean,” by Jory John and Pete Oswald.

“Since our theme this week was about kindness, we felt that a book about kindness would be a great culminating activity for tonight,” Ms. Williams said. “Never forget, it’s always cool to be kind.”


Notice of Special Board Meeting - November 24 2020


Mindfulness Club Celebrates Adversity at Harborfields High School

Harborfields High School students involved in Mindfulness Club recently created a schoolwide art installation called, “No Mud, No Lotus” to serve as a symbol for overcoming adversity. The ever-growing exhibit, stemming from a current art exhibition at the Rubin Museum of Art in New York City, features origami lotuses folded by students, faculty and staff. 

According to club adviser and high school social worker Susan Koenig, lotus flowers grow from mud and emerge out of water in colorful blossoms. “Even great beauty can emerge from dark, murky places as we too can rise from the challenges and loss caused by the COVID-19 pandemic,” she said. 

Since Nov. 9, colorful origami paper has been provided to students during lunch periods along with QR codes that link to directions on how to fold the lotuses. They will continue to be collected through the week of Thanksgiving and hung on the windows in the school’s airport where the phrase, "No Mud, No Lotus" has been painted by National Art Honor Society member Jesse Hendrickson. The lotuses will be added daily, adding a gentle reminder as students and staff walk through the school that “we can grow from this experience,” Ms. Koenig said.


Letter to the Community from the Board of Education