Monday, August 24, 2009
Soccer teams compete in NEAT tournament
MIDDLETOWN — Six soccer teams competed Sunday for a $500 prize in a tournament organized by the North End Action Team.
Held at Donovan Park, behind Macdonough School, the tournament was lively, even in the hot afternoon sun. Sounds of Latin music and the smell of hot dogs grilling wafted down the street as spectators gathered along the fence and passersby watched from the sidewalk.
NEAT offered free food and cold drinks to the players, who formed their own teams for the double-elimination tournament. There was so much interest, they had to turn people away, said Nick Petrie, community organizer with NEAT.
Petrie said he would like the tournament to become an annual event.
NEAT also holds basketball tournaments at the school on Fridays, and the soccer tournament was organized to reach out to the large Latino community in the North End, said Petrie.
NEAT is a neighborhood organization dedicated to improving quality of life in the North End.
Reprinted with permission from the Middletown Press.
Sunday, August 23, 2009
Today, NEAT, in partnership with North End Business, Paradise Luxuries, will be hosting our first evern soccer tournament at Donovan Park, next to Macdonough School between Spring and Stack Streets. I hope you can make it!
We have six teams of eleven competing for a prize of $500! There promise to be some great athletes, so come to enjoy the games, eat some food and enjoy the music Kevin at Satelite DJ.
I hope you can make it!
Click here to see the poster.
Friday, August 21, 2009
It is being held on the big, wide sidewalk in front of It's Only Natural Market and runs from 10-2 (note the time is different than on the poster, I'm working on that!). Stop by on your lunch break.
All farms are WIC Certified and, you may use your EBT Card.
Also, we're always looking for more farms, so please contact NEAT if you know of a good one or are a good one! 346-4845 or email@example.com
You may click on the poster to enlarge it.
Poster design by North Ender, Katie Marrotte
Thursday, August 20, 2009
(click here to see pictures of May tournament)
Friday, August 21 at 6:oo pm
This Friday, August 21st, we will be the last basketball tournament of the summer at Donovan Park, next to Macdonough School between Spring and Stack Streets. I hope you can make it! Music will be run by Kevin at Satelite DJ. We'll be cooking hot dogs, too.
No need to sign up in advance, just show up with one or two friends or come alone and we'll put you on a team.
Also, on Sunday, we'll be hosting a soccer tournament from 1-6pm. It's a similar event, but while this is a family event, the games are for adults. There will also be a kid game if there are enough people who want to play, so bring your shin guards! Come to play or watch the game.
call 346-4845 or email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
Wednesday, August 19, 2009
There are limited spots available so call the playhouse to register today (860) 347-6143
As always generous financial aide is available - please call Oddfellows to find out more.
See you at the Playhouse
Tuesday, August 18, 2009
This year, NEAT gave its annual college scholarship to recent graduate Steven Kovach with a scholarship of $500 to start college this fall. Steven has been in NEAT programs for the last 10 years and is active in the North End Youth Programs, is on the city's Design Review and Preservation Board and is a great role model for other Middletown kids.
Overall, the garden looked great and the food was amazing (Thanks to: Fusion Bakery, Tandoor, Typhoon, Public Bar and Grill, Empire Pizza, Sweet Harmony Café, It’s Only Natural Restaurant, Tschudin Chocolates, Order on Court, Tavern at the Inn at Middletown, Javapalooza, Puerto Vallarta, Firehouse Steakhouse, Mikado, O’Rourke’s Diner, Thai Gardens, Fiorie, Fred Carroll and Ann-Marie Cannata, Young's Printing, Minuteman Press, Metro Spirits, Forest City Wine & Spirits and Patty Palace.
Thanks to all who attended!
Monday, August 17, 2009
DO YOU NEED HELP PAYING FOR PRESCRIPTION DRUGS?If you are uninsured or struggling, the Partnership for Prescription Assistance may be able to help. Come find out if you may qualify for one or more of 475 patient assistance programs, many of which offer free or nearly free prescription medicines for those in need. There's a fast, free and convenient way to see if you may qualify… The "Help Is Here Express” is Coming! TODAY!!Monday August 17 at 10:00 am to 12:00 pm In front of the North End Action Team’s Office 668 Main Street, Middletown.
The “Help is Here Express” is equipped with computer terminals and phones so people can find out (for free) if they may be eligible for help. Trained specialists will be on board to make sure the process is quick and easy.
Call NEAT for more information at 346-4845 email@example.com
*Bring a list of your prescriptions with you*
Sponsored by America’s Pharmaceutical Research Companies and the North End Action Team
Tuesday, August 11, 2009
This is a wonderful event, with passed hors d'oeuvres, a live band, and a beautiful community garden to spend (what promises to be) a great summer evening in.
The event is a fundraiser for NEAT, so there is a suggested donation of $30 for an individual and $45 for a family, but we encourage residents to come by and help host the party. If you volunteer, there is no donation required.
This is a wonderful party hosted by the North End for the city, so bring family and friends and celebrate the many accomplishments of the neighborhood!
Please call NEAT if you have any questions (860-346-4845)
Click Here to watch the video of last year's party (created by North End Resident Dan Nocera)
Click Here to see pictures of last year's party
Friday, August 7, 2009
There are over fifteen different courses available for students to choose from, including Breakdancing, African Drumming, Creative Movement, Comic Book Creation, Drawing, Musical Collaboration, Sound Editing, and Web Design. Students are welcome to consider registering for individual arts enrichment courses or for the full program. This year,
Contact Artistic and Education Coordinator Sarah-Jane Ripa at (860) 685-7860 or firstname.lastname@example.org for more information or to arrange an interview for you and your student.
Wesleyan University’s Green Street Arts Center, which is celebrating its fifth year, is a vibrant center for arts education, serving residents of the neighborhood and the region. It is a project of
Thursday, August 6, 2009
By MONICA POLANCO
The Hartford Courant
August 6, 2009
Macdonough School, which officials once considered closing, is now being highlighted as an example of how to close the education achievement gap.
The school, which has the highest number of poor students of the eight elementary schools in Middletown, showed the greatest improvement locally on the Connecticut Mastery Test this year.
This result builds on its previous year's performance. In 2008, the Connecticut Coalition for Achievement Now, an advocacy group, placed the school on its Top 10 list of most improved schools in the state and will likely do so again this year, said Marc Porter Magee, the group's chief operating officer.
"It's a real leader for the state," Magee said. "It's the kind of school that other principals should be visiting to find out what's working."
This year, more Macdonough students placed at the highest level on the CMT and fewer scored at the lowest level than last year, school officials said. Before last year, the school had historically placed last in Middletown. But this year, the school's third-graders scored the highest in the city in the CMT's writing category, with 97 percent reaching proficiency or higher. Last year, the school's fifth-grade writing scores were No. 1 in the city.
Districtwide however, with the exception of reading, Middletown's scores were flat, said Assistant Superintendent Barbara Senges. The number of all test-takers in grades 3 through 8 who attained the more advanced category of "goal" in reading was 9.1 points higher than the state average from 2006 to 2009, she said. The number of city students who achieved the category of "proficient" in reading was 8.1 points higher than students across the state during the same period.
Those numbers, she said, should soothe parents who worry that advanced students will suffer when teachers give more attention to weaker readers.
It's The Teachers
Jon Romeo, the school's principal for the past three years, attributed his school's improvement to the teachers, who last year began working with one another in earnest to identify and target their students' weaknesses. The school also has benefited from student volunteers from Wesleyan University and from the advocacy of the North End Action Team, which has sought to help parents better express their needs to school and city officials.
That collaboration, Magee said, has turned the school into a community project.
"Everyone in Middletown should feel good about what they're accomplishing," he said.
With its wealthy swaths, pockets of poverty and large achievement gap, Middletown is a microcosm of Connecticut, Magee said. Statewide and nationwide, there is a consistent gap in test results between students of color and white students. In Connecticut, African American and Latino students generally score about 30 points lower than their white peers. Students of color fare somewhat better in Middletown, where they score about 20 points behind white students.
Macdonough's principal and teachers, some of whose students face such disadvantages as poor access to medical care and insufficient academic support at home, hold key answers for other educators who also are grappling with the achievement gap, Magee said. The school is among the state's top performing schools when ranked according to the number of students who qualify for free and reduced lunch. About 80 percent of Macdonough's students qualify for that program.
"If every school was doing what Macdonough is doing, Connecticut would go from having the largest achievement gap in the country to having the smallest gap," Magee said. "The way the gap is going to get closed is through principals like Jon Romeo, who day in and day out ... focus on catching kids up and setting the ball higher and higher."
Macdonough's success also demonstrates that student test results — which were originally used as an accountability tool and considered oppressive — can help teachers understand their students' comprehension and become an effective teaching tool, Magee said.
From Disney To Harry Potter
Some of the students who have benefited most from Macdonough's collaborative teaching style are Alezei Rosario, Mekhi Mickens and Carlos Perez — all of whom started out at the CMT's lowest reading level in the fourth grade and placed just one level below "advanced" the next year, Romeo said. The boys will enter sixth grade next month.
Alezei, 11, who began by reading relatively simple Disney books such as "101 Dalmations," advanced to reading Harry Potter books. At school he worked with an aide; at home he read to himself and his sister, now 5. He said that the Harry Potter series satisfies his craving for adventure and commotion.
"I just kept on and kept on reading," he said. "I started reading in school and reading on the school bus."
Kym Ciccia, a Macdonough teacher who helps struggling students in reading and math, said the school's success has boosted the morale of its students. She credited Romeo with helping to turn around the school's test scores.
"It's definitely just a feeling that we can succeed and we can do better," Ciccia said.
Copyright © 2009, The Hartford Courant
Tuesday, August 4, 2009
Last Saturday, a team from the North End, led by captain George Frick, took part in the annual Connecticut River Raft Race. It is such a fun event, and our boat (made 5 years ago by a group of North End youth) a funky yellow catamaran type boat, is one of the coolest on the water.
The crew took first place in their division and third place all around. Congratulations!