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Focus on Education

Blue Hill
Originally published in The Weekly Packet, August 30, 2012
George Stevens Academy - Back to school information

Focus on Education 2012 Archive
Click here to see the full Focus on Education 2012 Archive.

Opening day: Ninth graders and new students only on Tuesday, September 4, at 8 a.m. Meeting in the GSA gym.

All students back to school on Wednesday, September 5, 8 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.

Head of School Paul Perkinson, 374-2808
For other staff contact information, visit

Prices and first week menu were not available as of press time.

New faculty and staff

Registrar and Administrative Assistant to Student Services Trudy Bell: After a successful run as director of annual giving, Bell returns this fall in the role of registrar, a position she held for six years. She attended George Mason University where she earned a B.S. in finance and business administration. She is the mother of two GSA graduates. Before coming to GSA, she worked at the Blue Hill Library, Kneisel Hall, and WoodenBoat Publications.

Director of Food Service Frank Bianco: After teaching math part-time at GSA for six years and then at Sumner High School, Bianco returns to GSA as Director of Food Services. He has begun to plan menus of reasonably-priced, healthy, and delicious meals for all GSA students. He has two sons at GSA and knows the school well. He owns a catering business and is well known for his sausage grill at The Blue Hill Fair. Bianco earned a B.A. in math from Fitchburg State University and an M.S. from the University of Massachusetts. He is certified to teach culinary arts.

Interim Head of Maintenance George Comeau: Comeau has been appointed interim Head of Maintenance for the year. Before coming to GSA four years ago, he owned a cleaning business for 10 years, worked as Head of Maintenance at a school in Reading, Mass. and was shop foreman for a construction company.

ESL Instructor Kelly Cunnane: She joins our staff to support GSA’s English as a Second Language (ESL) program. She brings extensive ESL teaching experience, having taught in Belgium, Prague, China, Kenya and Colombia. For the past several years, she has been teaching in Jonesport and Machias. Before that she taught composition at the University of Maine at Machias. She is a published writer and her book, You Are a Kenyan Child, received the Ezra Jack Keats as well as the Maine Lupine Award. She has a B.A. from Nasson College and an M.A. in English from Cleveland State. She is an internationally certified TEFl/TESOL Instructor.

History Teacher and Study Hall Monitor Jerome Lawther: Lawther assumes a full-time position at GSA as part-time history teacher and 10th-12th study hall monitor. He attended high school in Germany and earned a B.S and M.S. in geography at Eastern Michigan University. Most recently, he taught at Kidspeace in Ellsworth and The Bay School. Before coming to Maine, he taught in two schools in Vermont. He is an accomplished Yogi and an avid triathlete. He lives in Blue Hill with his family.

English Teacher Lee Lehto: Lehto joins GSA to teach 12th grade English. She taught at Deer Isle-Stonington High School for the past 10 years. Her two sons graduated from GSA. She has a B.A. in sociology from the University of Massachusetts, and an M.A. in English from the University of Maine. She has been involved with the Maine Writing Project Summer Institute and with Haystack.

French Teacher Joelle McFarland: McFarland was born in Brittany and spoke Celtic before learning French. She has been involved in education for over 20 years. Most recently, she taught French and Spanish at The Bay School and before that, at the Rudolf Steiner School and the Ann Arbor High School in Michigan. She studied in Europe and at the Rudolf Steiner School. She is a trained chef who teaches cooking, and is also self-employed as a landscape designer.

Interim Assistant Head of School Buzz Moore: Having completed a long-term substitute teaching stint at GSA, as well as serving as study hall monitor, Moore has been appointed interim Assistant Head of School. He is an experienced English teacher and school administrator. After graduating from Ellsworth High School, he earned his B.A. in English at Dartmouth and his M.A. from Wesleyan University. He taught English in several schools in New England, and was Assistant Head at Lee Academy for five years. He owns and operates a golf course in Clifton and lives in Ellsworth.

Cross Country Coach Erich Reed: After revitalizing our Track program four years ago, GSA Librarian Erich Reed will take over Cross Country this year. He earned his B.A. from Brandeis University in American studies and his MLIS at Dalhousie University in Nova Scotia. He coached track in Eugene, Oregon. He lives in Brooksville.

Girls Dorm Parent Judy Steeves: Steeves joins the GSA staff as dorm parent for the girls dorm after serving as an assistant dorm parent in previous years. Before coming to GSA, she was an ed. tech and dorm parent at Lee Academy. She also served as long-term substitute teacher in various schools. She studied at the University of Maine.

Director of Annual Giving Jennifer Traub: Traub joins the Development Office as director of annual giving. Before coming to GSA staff, she was a writer and project manager for Blue Hill Heritage Trust. She has also served in the same capacity at Just Alternatives with Jon Wilson of Brooklin. She has done significant community volunteer work and was instrumental in bringing broadband Internet service to East Blue Hill. She majored in English and French at Georgetown University. She earned her M.A. in comparative literature at the University of Pennsylvania. She lives in Blue Hill with her family.


Estimated number of students by grade: grade 9, 76; grade 10, 90; grade 11, 69; grade 12, 83 for an estimated total of 318.

There are 61 faculty and staff.

Policy Updates

There is a new attendance policy and new honors policy this year. Both of these are in the school’s parent/student handbook, which was mailed to all students. It is also available at


August 29-30 Inservice day
Sep. 4 Freshmen only
Sep. 5 All students
Sept. 28-30 Homecoming
Oct. 8 Columbus Day, no school
Oct. 11 Parent conferences
Oct. 12 Noon dismissal
Oct. 26 End of first quarter
Nov. 12 Veterans Day
Nov. 21-23 Thanksgiving break
Dec. 7 Noon dismissal/in-service
Dec. 24-Jan. 4 Winter holiday break
Jan. 18 End of second quarter/noon dismissal
Jan. 21 Martin Luther King Jr. day
Feb. 18-22 February vacation
Mar. 14  Parent conferences
Mar. 15 Noon dismissal
Mar. 29 End of third quarter
April 5 Noon dismissal/in-service
Apr. 15-19 Spring vacation
May 4 SAT’s 11th grade
May 6-17 AP exams
May 27 Memorial Day
May 28-31 Arts festival
June 3-6 Sr. year exams
June 5-10 9-11 grade exams/make-ups
June 7 Class Night
June 9 Graduation
June 11 Faculty in-service