Softball Picks Up Third Win Over Hillhouse

by Bill O'Brien | May 24, 2017 8:21 am

Bill O'Brien Photo The Branford Hornet’s softball team had an easy time in their recent game against the visiting Hillhouse Academics when they pulled off a 17-5 lopsided victory in an abbreviated five-inning game. The SCC has a “Mercy Rule” to end a game when a team is ahead by 12 runs after five innings.  Here Marissa Minore makes perfect contact on one of her two home runs in the game.

Bill O'Brien Photo “It’s nice seeing our players get a lot of hits and score a bunch of runs,” said coach Chuck Reale after the recent Hornets win. “Those things help when you’re having an off year.”  And here Minore is shown rounding third on her way home. She had 6 RBIs in the game. 

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Branford’s Bullying Concerns Resurface

by Sally E. Bahner | May 17, 2017 7:28 am | Comments (5)

What programs are in place within the Branford school district to combat bullying?

Although towns locally and nationwide have specifically addressed the problem and abundant resources are available, Branford’s programs, if any, lack transparency – all in the name of allegedly protecting the privacy of students.

Bullying at Branford schools was back in the news recently after the mothers of two children who were bullied – one at Tisko Elementary School and another at Walsh Intermediate School – contacted WTNH television to openly discuss their cases.  Their hope was to call attention to the ongoing school bullying problem and their frustration with the school district.

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Red Hot Hornets Nine on Eight Game Winning Streak

by Bill O'Brien | May 16, 2017 7:23 am

Bill O'Brien Photo When the Branford baseball team started out this season 4-5, there might have been some naysayers who said, “Here we go again.” The Hornets had losing records the past three years finishing with 7-13, 8-13, and 8-13 records. Now they are hot. Really hot. Yesterday was sweet revenge as they defeated rival East Haven 5-3.

Bill O'Brien Photo Some on the other hand may have said, “Hey, we lost four of those games by a total of only five runs. A hit here or there and we could have been 7-2.” Not only that, the offense sputtered during that stretch and the Hornets only scored a total of five runs in the five losses.

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RTM Adopts Whopping $111.8 M School-Town Budget

by marcia chambers | May 15, 2017 8:04 am

Marcia Chambers Photo The Representative Town Meeting (RTM) last week adopted a whopping $111.8 million school-town budget, the result of a state financial crisis that drove the legislative body to adopt a town budget increasing the taxpayer’s bill by 5.33 percent. Last year’s school-town budget was $105,891.217. But the process isn’t over.

“We are basically trying to assess the impact on us based on what we know, and we have made provisions to deal with it,” despite enormous uncertainty, Finance Director Jim Finch told the Eagle in an interview last week. The next and final step takes place a week from today, on May 22, when the Board of Finance (BOF) meets at Fire Headquarters to set the mill rate. At this juncture, the mill rate is currently estimated at 28.87 mills, but it could go lower if the BOF acts to do so. Last year’s mill rate came in at 27.41

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Girls’ Tennis Looks For Strong Finish

by Bill O'Brien | May 11, 2017 7:53 am

Bill O'Brien Photo Last year after their first eight tennis matches, the Branford Lady Hornets were looking good and were off to a 6-2 start. This year, after the loss of several key players to graduation, they stand at 1-7 after their first eight matches, but are optimistic about how they will finish. Indeed yesterday they beat Lyman Hall 4-3 in what was the team’s best match so far.

Bill O'Brien Photo “It’s exciting and a lot of fun to watch the players develop their technique and match play skills over the course of the season,” said coach Jim Cole.

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Ongoing Election Reflection: Teens’ Perspectives, Part 2

by Sally E. Bahner | May 10, 2017 8:50 am

Sally E. Bahner Photo The Eagle interviewed five Branford High School seniors, Spencer Mariotti, Jack Nelson, Hilliard Wolfe, Sean Williams, and Mauro Aceves, who shared their thoughts on the 2016 election and concerns moving forward.  Part 2.

Two of the five, Mariotti and Williams, were able to vote in the November election. But three others, who were not eligible to vote –  Wolfe, Nelson and Aceves – were articulate and have formed educated opinions about the outcome and the future.  Unfortunately, although we reached out to the teens in general, no young women were present due to scheduling conflicts. Click here to read Part 1.

All five are senior presidents of the 2017 Model Congress (there are 12 in all), in which students take on various political roles and debate other high school students from all over the country on topics related to democracy. Their advisor is James Petela, a social studies teacher.


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Ongoing Election Reflection: Teens’ Perspectives, Part 1

by Sally E. Bahner | May 9, 2017 7:32 am

This is the first of two parts of an interview with five Branford High School seniors, who shared their thoughts on the 2016 election and moving forward.

Sally E. Bahner Photo A conversation with several Branford High School teens about the 2016 election and events since then yielded some interesting perspectives… and surprises. In particular, there was Sean Williams, who voted for Donald Trump, but quickly experienced voter’s remorse, so much so that he will be interning for Democratic Congresswoman Rosa DeLauro this summer.

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Hornets Girls’ Lacrosse Off To A Fast Start of Victories

by Bill O'Brien | May 7, 2017 7:38 am

Bill O'Brien Photo This year’s Branford girls’ lacrosse team is on a mission. They have improved each of the past three years from 8-7-1 in 2014 to 10-8 in 2015 and 15-4 last year. Right now they are off to a 9-2 start with four victories in the past week, including a 13-4 victory over Masuk and a 7-4 win over Joel Barlow High School yesterday. 

Bill O'Brien Photo The game the Eagle covered was last Saturday and pitted the Lady Hornets against the Masuk Panthers of Monroe, members of the South West Conference (SWC).  Here Autumn McHenry, a junior,  fires a shot between several Masuk players for one of her four goals. 

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Faculty, Staff Urge BOE to Keep Walsh Principal

by marcia chambers | May 3, 2017 7:45 am

In an unusual action, an overwhelming number of Walsh Intermediate School teachers and staff made a strong plea via a petition last week to the Board of Education to keep Robin Goeler, the school’s veteran principal, in his post.

In response, Hamlet Hernandez, the Superintendent of Schools, told the Eagle afterwards that Goeler would leave Walsh to become the principal of Mary T. Murphy Elementary School come September as planned.  The petition did not change his mind.  The BOE apparently has no say in the matter since the transfer is within the school district and within Hernandez’s purview, the superintendent said. 

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