Friday, August 25, 2023

School bell about to ring for students in Windham and Raymond

By Ed Pierce

As parents in Windham and Raymond exhale a sigh of relief that summer is winding down, students have just a few days left of vacation until classes resume next week.

Students in Windham and Raymond are preparing to return
to classes next week as school reopens for the
2023-2024 school year for all age groups.
At the six RSU 14 schools, teachers, staff members and administrators have been preparing to welcome back students for the 2023-2024 school year. And with children out and about on their way to classes, drivers need to be extra careful and pay attention in school zones and around school buses carrying students to and from school.

Preparing for the first day of class may seem daunting for parents who have endured registering their children for another year of school, purchasing new clothing and footwear, gathering school supplies, planning lunches, coordinating after-school care, and arranging transportation, but now that those tasks are completed, the countdown to the first bell of the school year is at hand.

In Raymond, elementary and middle school students will either attend Raymond Elementary School or Jordan-Small Middle School. Raymond students in Grade 1 to Grade 4 go to Raymond Elementary, while students in Grade 5 through Grade 8 attend Jordan-Small Middle School.

Beth Peavey is entering her fourth year as the principal at Raymond Elementary School and was the school’s assistant principal for three years prior to becoming principal.

Jordan-Small Middle School is led by Principal Michelle Brann, who is entering her second year in a leadership position there. Brann formerly served as the assistant principal at Lake Region Middle School.

The first day of school for Grades 1 to 4 at Raymond Elementary School is Tuesday, Aug. 29. Half of Raymond Elementary kindergarten students start classes on Thursday, Aug. 31, while the remaining half of RES kindergarten students will start school on Tuesday, Sept. 5.

In Windham, students in kindergarten through Grade 3 attend Windham Primary School. Grade 4 and Grade 5 Windham students attend Manchester School, while students in Grade 6 to Grade 8 go to Windham Middle School. High school students in Grade 9 to Grade 12 in both Raymond and Windham attend Windham High School.

Dr. Kyle Rhoads leads Windham Primary School as principal and has served in that role there for 16 years. Danielle Donnini is entering her 27th year of working at Manchester School and she has led the school as its principal since 2015.

This year, Windham Middle School has a new principal, Greg Applestein, who joins RSU 14 after serving three years as the principal at Bonny Eagle High School. Ryan Caron is entering his sixth year as the principal at Windham High School and formerly served as the principal at South Portland High School.

Christopher Howell has led RSU 14 as Superintendent of Schools since 2019. Christine Frost-Bertinent is the RSU 14 assistant superintendent and Christine Hesler is RSU 14’s Director of Curriculum.

The first day of school for Windham Primary School students in Grades 1 to 3 will be Tuesday, Aug. 29. Half of WPS kindergarten students begin school on Thursday, Aug. 31 and the remaining half of Windham kindergarten students start school on Tuesday, Sept. 5.

Windham Middle School classes will begin Tuesday, Aug. 29. The first day of instruction for Windham High School students is Wednesday, Aug. 30.

For parents, RSU 14 uses Parent Square for school-to-home communications including mass notifications and urgent alerts, language translation for multilingual families, and to schedule parent-teacher conferences. The district also uses the Ride 360 app to view a student’s transportation assignment or to request changes to a student’s scheduled transportation. The Ride 360 app may be downloaded by visiting

Aaron Gant and Sharon Leeman serve as co-directors of transportation for RSU 14, while Jeanne Reilly is the RSU Director of School Nutrition.

Windham Christian Academy

All students attending Windham Christian Academy in kindergarten through Grade 12 will return to classes on Tuesday, Sept. 5. The first day of school for students in WCA’s Pre-K3 is Tuesday, Sept. 5 while the first day for students in WCA’s PreK4 will be Wednesday, Sept. 6.

Jackie Sands is in her 11th year of working for Windham Christian Academy and has served as the school’s principal since 2018. <

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