May 12, 2023

Dear Students, Staff and Families:


Teacher Appreciation Week – May 8 – 12

This week has been a celebration of appreciation for our teachers! 

On behalf of the Central Office Administration Team, I want to extend our gratitude and appreciation for the work our teachers do each and every day in our schools.  Educators provide our students with the knowledge and confidence to become successful in life. We understand the challenges teachers face on a day to day basis and we are here to support you. Your commitment and dedication to our students during the school day and many times after school for extended school help or extracurricular activities is very much appreciated.

Be sure to take time for yourselves!

Thank you to our Teachers! You are appreciated!

I would like to provide you with some school news updates and information from the Cumberland School Committee meeting held on Thursday, May 11, 2023

2023-24 District Teacher of the Year

I am pleased to announce Cumberland’s 2023-24 District Teacher of the Year! Ms. Tammy Lemieux, Transition Classroom Teacher at Cumberland High School is this year’s recipient.

There was a surprise announcement made on Thursday, May 11th in Ms. Lemieux’s classroom. Principal Adolfo Costa and I were amongst the many colleagues, students, family, and friends of Ms. Lemieux sharing this very special moment with her.

Recognition will also be given to Ms. Lemieux at the Cumberland School Committee meeting on Wednesday, May 24, 2023.

Congratulations Ms. Tammy Lemieux!

RICAS Update

The month of April marked the beginning of RICAS testing for ELA.  Principals have reported successful sessions and are pleased with the efforts of the students.  We now shift our attention to testing Grades 3-8 Mathematics for the month of May.  Early reports mirror the efforts in ELA.  We look forward to seeing our students’ results as we continue to recover from the effects of the pandemic.  Gap closure is a district focus and teachers are working diligently to help students achieve.

We expect our results due in sometime late summer.  At that point, the results will be embargoed by the Department of Education until sometime in October.  Cumberland looks to maintain and improve upon its standing as a top academic district in the state.

Revised School Calendars


The calendar was revised to reflect the change in the last day of school due to the two school closure days – December 23 and February 28.  The last day of school is Friday, June 23, 2023.


The 2023-2024 school calendar was approved by the Cumberland School Committee on March 9, 2023.

The first days of school will be Tuesday, September 5 for grades 1 -9 and Wednesday, September 6, 2023 for all grades Pre-K – 12.

2023-2024 School Start/End Times

As we start the 2023-2024 school year, Garvin Memorial School will be returning to their newly renovated home school and Ashton School will be moving to the high school campus for the 2023-24 school year in anticipation of the year-long renovation project scheduled at Ashton.

The District will need to make transportation modifications which will impact the school start and end times for some of the elementary schools.  In order to keep the transportation costs as budgeted, the elementary school start times require adjustments. The proposed school start time changes for the elementary schools were approved by the Cumberland School Committee at its meeting on Thursday, May 11, 2023.

The Preschool schedule is still under review for possible changes.

2023-2024 School Start/End Times

School Construction Update

Ashton School – Pictures

Great progress continues at Ashton with the construction of the new addition. With exterior work neatly completed, attention is now focused on the interior this week with cubbies, cabinetry, bathroom tile, ceiling grids and fire alarm work. This project is on time and to be completed in late summer of 23.

Community School – Pictures

The addition at Community is also on time and slated for completion in August of 23. Work this week is focused on exterior sidewalks, interior cabinetry, ceiling gridding, and sinks. We are excited to see this new part of the school come to life in the fall of 23.

Garvin Memorial School Pictures

The school-wide renovation of the existing building remains on schedule. This week interior wiring work, interior window and door framing, and completing sheetrock/ spackling has characterized much of the work.

The new addition at Garvin has picked up speed and is now within four weeks of being on schedule and is trending in the right direction. Work on the addition is all encompassing from roofing to flooring to window/ door framing work and interior/exterior wall work.

Coming very soon at Garvin School – the complete stripping and replacement of the existing Garvin roof, a roof which is well past its useful life.

We are very excited to see Garvin School join JJM Cumberland Hill School as our second newly renovated elementary school – opening in fall of 2023.

AlphaBEST Summer Camp & 2023-24 Before/After School Program

Registration for AlphaBEST Extended Day and Summer Excursions is now open.

School may be out, but AlphaBEST is still on! At AlphaBEST Summer Excursions your little explorer can enjoy a full summer of wonder-filled activities, both indoors and out.

AlphaBEST Extended Day is so much more than a by-the-books before and after school program. Talented staff facilitate the daily need for assigned homework to be completed, but that’s where the traditional instruction ends. Through innovative curriculum, kids tap into their innate sense of wonder and curiosity while exploring STEM, language and culture, arts, fitness, and more!

To enroll your child or to simply learn more about the AlphaBEST opportunities, please follow the link below.
Cumberland – AlphaBEST

AlphaBEST Summer Camp – English

AlphaBEST Summer Camp – Spanish

AlphaBEST Before/After School Program 2023-24 – English

AlphaBEST Before/After School Program 2023-24 – Spanish

School Sports Update

The spring sports season is moving along rapidly with great success both on and off the athletic fields at the High and Middle School levels.  Some of the highlights from the spring season are:

*  The Boys Lacrosse team has partnered with the Friends of Jaclyn Foundation, an organization that provides a child with severe cancer diagnoses an opportunity to be part of a sports team or a support organization to help the child cope with the stress associated with their disease.  The aim of the organization is to provide moral support and an avenue for the child to have an outlet for them to forget about their medical issues for a short time. There was a signing ceremony held in the CHS foyer on April 25th and Wesley Beal is now part of our Lacrosse program

*  Senior Susanna Henderson was presented the RIIL Leadership and Service Award by the league, on May 10th at Valley Country Club

*  Congratulations to the Boys and Girls track teams who captured the Northern Division Championships this past Sunday at Tucker Field

 *  Six student athletes recently attended the RIIL Student – Athlete Leadership training workshop that took place at Camp Fogarty on May 5th

*  The Unified Basketball team had its annual day game against Lincoln before a packed wellness center.

*  McCourt and North Cumberland Middle schools wrapped up successful Unified Basketball seasons with its season ending tournament at the wellness center on 4/26.

On the Horizon

* Athlete signing day Wednesday May 17th , 2-3 pm in the Foyer of the High School

Happy Mother’s Day to all moms. Thank you for all you do!

Enjoy the weekend and the beautiful weather!


Philip D. Thornton, Ed.D.

Superintendent of Schools

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