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Grey Matters, June 1, 2015; Volume 3, Number 36

posted Jun 7, 2015, 10:26 AM by Andrew Shen   [ updated Jul 6, 2015, 6:39 AM by James Marcotte ]

Hi Everyone,

I know a few parents (including RJ Grey parents) who have seniors at the High School, and so I am somewhat aware of how hectic, and exciting, this week will be (and already has been).  The Senior Prom was last Friday, and then graduation is this coming Friday evening at 5:30pm.  My sense is that for many of these families, this week will involve juggling the planning of various celebrations, managing welcoming visiting relatives, and varying degrees of sleep deprivation.  My oldest is finishing 4th grade, so I’ve got some time before we approach this particular milestone.  In the meantime, I’ll keep my weekends occupied with activities such as watching the aforementioned son misread a pop fly at his baseball game, and having the baseball make a pretty painful and unwanted landing on his face; he’ll be OK, and he apparently wasn’t serious when, while holding a bag of frozen edamame (I didn’t have any ice packs in the house) to his face, he frustratingly declared, “I’m never playing that game again!” Congratulations to the families who have children graduating later this week, and I look forward to seeing them at the graduation ceremony on Friday evening; that is, once we all find parking.  I will not be directing traffic for this event.  Keeping fingers crossed for low humidity, and a precipitation free sky.  

A few weeks after high school graduation, we at RJ Grey also send off our 8th grade students and wish them well as most of them make their way down the street to the high school, while others join private schools, enroll in Minuteman Tech, or are moving out of Acton or Boxborough.  This year, we are also preparing to bid farewell to four retiring members of the RJ Grey staff, as they begin new chapters of their lives as well.  Tim Nolan (Social Studies), Lillian Ramos (Spanish), Carol Brady (Academic Support Center assistant), and Ginger Kendall (Learning Center assistant) are completing distinguished careers as members of our staff.  Celebrating the retirements of our colleagues is always bittersweet; we are happy they’re in a position to pursue other interests, and we’ll also miss them deeply.  If you and/or your children have some fond memories of working with any of these teachers and staff members, I would encourage you to drop them a quick note and join us in thanking them for their years of service to RJ Grey and all of its students (some of you already have, and thank you for that).  

Last year, members of the high school volleyball coaching staff and current varsity athletes offered a series of volleyball clinics for RJ Grey students interested in the sport.  They are offering the opportunity again this year to learn the basics of volleyball and enjoy some opportunities to play.  No experience is necessary.  Students interested in participating should go to the RJ Grey gym on Mondays and Wednesdays during  the next two weeks beginning this Monday, June 1 after school from 3-4:30.  If you have any questions, please contact Darren Gwin (he’s a volleyball coach and teacher at the High School) at  

This Thursday is our Empty Bowls Ice Cream Social!  On Thursday, June 4, from 5:30 to 7pm, families can enjoy an evening of Art, Singing and Ice Cream. Students will showcase their art and singing talents and invite families to a charity ice cream social. 7th grade students made hand-crafted ceramic bowls in their art classes and families that participate will get to take home a hand-crafted bowl as a reminder of the vast number of hungry families around the world and right here in our own community. The money raised from this event will be donated to the Acton Community Supper and Acton Food Pantry. This organization helps to feed many hungry families in the greater Acton area. Last year this event helped to raise an amazing $1000 for the charity! As another treat, the Select Choir will perform throughout the evening in our outdoor courtyard. This event is also an opportunity for 7th grade students to display other artistic works in a non-competitive, communal environment.  If you have any questions, please email Sara Haskin at  IMG_1897.JPG

As we enter June, we will need to begin the process of collecting some school materials, such as textbooks.  Classroom teachers will begin that process in a week or two; our Library is going to start it’s collection process this week, as it usually takes more than one reminder (and sometimes four or ten) to everything returned.  This week, we will be sending out reminders to students that all library books and materials need to be returned to the RJ Grey Library by this Friday, June 5.  

A few friendly reminders about upcoming events and deadlines:

  • 7th Grade Dance is Friday, June 12 at 7pm
  • 8th Grade End of Year Dance/Celebration is Friday, June 19 at 7pm

  • End of Year class field trips to Kimballs (7th) and Canobie Lake (8th) is Wednesday, June 24th and permission slips were due last week!  

Finally, I want to mention that our District has given its website a facelift!  Check it out at Along with this re-design, the District has also created an official Twitter account (separate from Dr. Brand’s Twitter feed), and you can sign up to be a follower by going here.  Please note that you are not allowed to sign up to follow that Twitter account unless you are already signed up as a follower of RJ Grey’s Twitter feed. Granted, that is not official District policy, just something I am trying to guilt all of you into following.  

Have a great week, everyone.