The Greely High School debate team with the spoils of war earned at the state debate competition. In front are Mia Netland, left, and Madison Dalton. In the back row are Ben Hall, Carson Bell, Grant Dresnok and team captain Zach Whiting. Coach Jason Curry is at the top. Contributed

Greely High School students are top performers in state debates

Greely High School won four of Maine’s six slots for the Congressional Debate at the national qualifiers for Maine’s National Speech and Debate Association chapter, held in Augusta on Jan. 18 at the State House.

The Maine event was named in honor of the late Dale Denno, a well-liked and admired state representative for Cumberland and the surrounding area.

According to Greely coach Jason Curry, Yarmouth and Kennebunk teams earned the other two spots at the nationals.

“Other excellent schools that competed on that day were Brunswick, Scarborough, Bangor and Lincoln Academy,” said Curry, who added that the national finals will be held in June in Albuquerque, New Mexico.

Harpswell Coastal Academy collaborates with The Telling Room for publication

Fourteen students from Harpswell Coastal Academy have become published authors, thanks to a partnership with The Telling Room.

It started last fall, when students in Whitney Conway’s class set out to write a book of personal narratives, according to Jenny O’Connell, teaching artist at The Telling Room.

“What began as a simple game of Two Truths and a Lie quickly evolved into something more profound than perhaps any of us expected,” O’Connell said. “They dealt with loss. They questioned the rules. They recorded the strange and funny details that make up a life.”

The result is a book titled “somehow i knew what to do,” which covers a wide range of stories, poems and firsthand narratives. The program was part of The Telling Room’s multi-week, in-school residency at the Brunswick Landing high school campus.

The course resonated with HCA students, who attend the public charter school for this type of project-based interdisciplinary curriculum.

“Writing my narrative … helped me get out a story that I hadn’t been able to express before,” Harland Norcott said.

“I grew as a writer because the experience pushed me to write in a genre which is not my usual ‘go-to,'” Tianna Hayvis said. “… I was in control but had all the support I needed to tell my story.”

PHS partners with Lee Auto for internships

A new internship program with Lee Auto Dodge Chrysler Jeep Ram Service Department is giving four Portland High School students hands-on experience working with cars.

Students can intern in the service department to learn skills such as changing tires and oil, checking tire pressure, rotating tires and working with brakes and spark plugs.

Lee had one Portland High intern last year and two this year.

Broderick Rutledge, a sophomore planning on enrolling in the Portland Arts and Technology High School Automotive Program, likes the internship because “it’s something I enjoy; the people that I work with also play an important part in it, too. They make the internship even more enjoyable.”

Francis Costin, a senior, said, “It’s really interesting to learn auto skills on a variety of different vehicles, and I am also excited to be able to apply the skills I learn at Lee Auto to my car later in life.”

Frank J. Gaziano Linemen of the Year

Frank J. Gaziano Linemen of the Year were announced on Jan. 25. Second from right is Nathan Mars, Scarborough High School. On his right is David Gross from Bucksport High School. At left is Peter DeSimon, selection committee member. Jeff Kane, retired president at National Distributors and Frank Gaziano’s son-in-law, is at right. Courtesy / Gaziano Awards