Hamlet Gets a Raise

by Sally E. Bahner | Sep 29, 2016 8:00 am

The Board of Education announced last week that it had extended the contract of Schools Superintendent Hamlet Hernandez for one more year. Board chairman Michael Krause has the authorization to negotiate the terms, which have not yet been disclosed.

Hernandez’s current salary is $188,546. In 2015, he received a raise totaling $5,046, which was 2.75 percent. Presumably his salary went up.

Hernandez has been with the school district for almost seven years.

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Hornets Comeback Nets Victory Over Yellow Jackets

by Bill O'Brien | Sep 22, 2016 7:34 am

Bill O'Brien Photo The Branford Hornets volleyball team found themselves down two games to one and trailing by four points in the fourth game of their match with East Haven on Tuesday.

Bill O'Brien Photo But they turned things around and rallied to win 25-17 to force a fifth and deciding game. They outscored the Yellow Jackets in the final match winning 15-10 for their first win of the season.

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Timeline, Funding, Outlined for Walsh School

by Sally E. Bahner | Sep 20, 2016 7:12 am

Marcia Chambers Photo The timeline and funding for the Walsh Intermediate School renovation was front and center at the Public Building Commission and Representative Town Meetings (RTM) meetings last week, as questions were raised about state funding for an $88 million renovation. 

Charles Warrington Jr. of Colllier’s International, the owner’s rep for the Walsh Intermediate School renovation, updated the Public Building Commission last week with an anticipated timeline for the project.

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Hornets Football Goes for Two in Win over Guilford

by Bill O'Brien | Sep 20, 2016 7:01 am

Bill O'Brien Photo It’s been seven years since the Branford football team started their season with two consecutive victories. The year was 2009 when the Hornets began with three straight wins defeating North Haven, Platt Tech, and Hillhouse to open the season. 

Bill O'Brien Photo On Friday the Hornets won their second game in a row to open the season, a come-from-behind 15-14 win over the Guilford Indians on the road. “We hung in there,” said coach John Limone. “We didn’t give up, we persevered. It was a great win for us.”

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Boys’ Soccer Falls to Lyman Hall, 2-0

by Bill O'Brien | Sep 17, 2016 8:22 am

he Branford Boys’ Soccer team won their opening game last week with an impressive 6-0 victory over rival East Haven and played well enough on Tuesday to win their second game, but came up short losing to the Lyman Hall Trojans 2-0 at Flax Mill Field, their temporary home.

Flax Mill is being used while the repair work on the main field at the James L. MacVeigh Alumni Athletic Center is being completed.

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School Year Begins with Declining Enrollment

by Sally E. Bahner | Aug 29, 2016 7:00 am

File Photo Just ahead of the opening of school today, the Board of Education (BOE) met to set the stage for the upcoming year, a year in which the overall school population has declined to under 3,000 students for the first time in its history.

The district’s enrollment has been on a steady decline since June 2009 when there were 3,506 students enrolled in the town’s public schools. The enrollment was 3,495 in June 2010; 3,438 in June 2011; 3,275 in June 2012; 3,271 in June 2013, 3,108 in October, 2014. This year, as the 2016 academic year begins, the overall population fell to 2,994 students across five schools and one family resource center. 

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Back to School Preparations: Beyond the Backpack

by Sally E. Bahner | Aug 26, 2016 7:08 am

File Photo For parents and kids, school preparations are underway for the opening of Branford’s public schools on Monday. New backpacks, sneakers, and notebooks are on the list. All are material items.

But what about the emotional preparation you will need if your kid gets bullied?

The Eagle has recently published two exclusive articles here and here about a serious bullying case at Walsh Intermediate School, a case that, while traumatic for the family, didn’t even find its way onto the school’s official bullying log. And the transfer student who led the bullying attacks against a Jewish student is returning to Walsh this year. 

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$80M Walsh School “Alteration” Faces Challenges

by Sally E. Bahner | Aug 24, 2016 7:00 am

Sally E. Bahner Photo The town’s Public Building Commission last week approved the next step in the Walsh Intermediate School renovation and expansion project by voting to select option A, an option that has fewer construction phases, but a greater challenge in terms of reimbursement costs. At more than $80 million, the project is the most costly in the town’s history and full state reimbursement – anticipated at 35 percent at this point – is critical and at this juncture, uncertain.

The total for the option A is $81.7 million; $88.2 was approved by the Representative Town Meeting in June, but that amount is closer to the option B – a “like new” configuration that was rejected by the building commission.

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Walsh Bullying Episode Draws Outside Agencies

by Sally E. Bahner | Aug 15, 2016 8:00 am | Comments (3)

Mary Johnson Photo Adrienne Serra, an advocate for Orit Avizov, whose son was attacked last winter by Walsh Intermediate School students allegedly yelling “Kill the Jew,” has been corresponding with state and federal agencies for months to seek a resolution to the bullying episode.

She has consulted with the state Department of Education (SDE), the U.S. Attorney’s Office (The Department of Justice) and state Sen. Ted Kennedy Jr.’s office, she told the Eagle in an interview.

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Walsh Bullying Log Omits Reported Student Hate Crime

by Sally E. Bahner | Aug 10, 2016 3:07 pm | Comments (2)

File Photo “Kill the Jew!”

So one member of a crowd allegedly yelled while attacking a Jewish student earlier this year at Walsh Intermediate School.

That incident ended up in an official medical report that the school is required to keep by law. But somehow it didn’t show up in a different public report, a log entitled “Verified Acts of Bullying in Branford Public Schools.”

Now Adrienne Serra is trying to find out why.

Serra is an advocate for Orit Avizov, whose son was the victim of the hate crime. In July Serra received that system-wide bullying report, and couldn’t find the anti-Semitic incident anywhere in it.

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