Northern School Notebook: April 20

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NYA hosts returning Tibetan monk 

On April 13, North Yarmouth Academy welcomed Khen Rinpoche back to campus. Rinpoche is a Tibetan Buddhist monk and founding director of the Siddhartha School in Ladakh, India. Rinpoche came to officially present a Mani prayer wheel to the Academy. The traditional Buddhist wheel is filled with thousands of mantras which are the universal mantra of compassion. When the wheel is turned clockwise, it releases these mantras of compassion into the world. NYA alumna Angmo Stanzin ’16, who was also a student of Rinpoche’s in India, accompanied him for the blessing.

Rinpoche was born in Ladakh. In 1953, at 15 years old, he walked over 960 miles to Shigatse, Tibet to join the Tashi Lungpo monastery. He returned to Ladakh to escape the religious persecution in Chinese-occupied Tibet in 1960. Rinpoche was appointed abbot of Tashi Lungpo monastery in Bylakuppe, India, by His Holiness the Dali Lama in 2005. Rinpoche is the founding director of the Siddhartha School in his native village of Ladakh. The school serves children in preschool through 10th class; students include nomadic children and orphans of the remote Chang Tang area.

Maine student-artists selected for screensaver challenge

Twenty Maine student artists will have an audience of more than 70,000 students and educators for their artwork starting this fall, and many local students will be among them.

More than 200 students submitted images to be considered by the Maine Department of Education’s Maine Learning Technology Initiative Screensaver Challenge. The images are scored and selected by an independent panel of three judges.

The following local students’ work was chosen: “Griffin Vulture,” Anna Labbe, grade 10, Freeport High School; “Abstract Ocean Life,” Elizabeth Young, grade 9, Freeport High School; “Duck at Dawn,” Bennett Hight, Grade 12, Freeport High School; “Fallen Leaves,” Zoe Fox, grade 12, Freeport High School; “Lights of the City,” Griffin Agnese, grade 11, Freeport High School; “Beneath the Surface,”Corinne Ahearn, grade 9, Greely High School; “Eel Life,” Maddie Hall, Grade 8, Greely Middle School; and “Children’s Space,” Corilie Green, grade 10, Freeport High School.

An annual tradition of the DOE, students in grades K-12 can submit artwork at the beginning of the year. The winning student artists will have their work showcased on MLTI devices for the 2017-18 school year. In addition, the student artists will have their registration fees waived for the 2017 MLTI Student Conference, and their winning pieces will be printed and displayed at the department’s Augusta offices June 1 to Aug. 31. Their artwork is available for viewing on the DOE website.

Khen Rinpoche was welcomed back to North Yarmouth Academy on April 13, when he officially presented a Mani prayer wheel to the Academy. Rinpoche is a Tibetan Buddhist monk and founding director of the Siddhartha School in Ladakh, India.

Yarmouth High School students Cayte Tillotson, a sophomore, and Isaac Saunders, a junior, shadowed state Sens. Amy Volk, R-Scarborough, left, and Catherine Breen, D-Cumberland, on March 16, at the State House in Augusta as part of the Career Exploration program.

Cathy Potter, librarian at Falmouth Elementary School, was named Library Media Specialist of the Year by the Maine Association of School Libraries. The award is given to a school librarian who embodies excellence in school library work. In addition to her position at FES, Potter is a National Board Certified Teacher, chairwoman of the Chickadee Award Committee in Maine and a frequent contributor to School Library Journal.