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Who's New at MHS and Other News You Can Use

posted Sep 23, 2016, 11:31 AM by Chuck Caragianes

Good afternoon--

This year we have several new staff members or staff members returning to Maynard High School.  We are very fortunate to have such a talented, dedicated and caring group of professionals joining us at Maynard High School this year.  Each person has put together a little something about themselves and I thought you might be interested in getting to know them just a bit.


In the Math Department

My name is Danielle Bearden. I am coming back from two years maternity leave. I have a three year old son and two year old daughter. I spend most of my free time entertaining them. We like going to Davis Farmland, the zoo, museums, parks, beaches, etc. I started teaching at Maynard high school in 2007 right after graduating from Merrimack College. Recently I received my Master's degree in Math for Education from Umass Lowell. I am looking forward be back at work educating students in the joys of mathematics.

In the Science Department

Farwa Faisal completed her B.Sc in Biopsychology from Tufts University in 2012. After a year of reflection and travelling with her family, she decided that her true interest lay within the classroom and decided to persue education. She graduated from Brandeis University with a M.A.T. in 2014, and has now joined the MHS to help inspire her students to the world of science. Farwa is an avid reader, whether it is the latest in the series of Harry Potter or the most current groundbreaking research in science. She also loves to cook, and believes that it is one of the best ( and most delicious!) ways to learn about different places and cultures. She lives in Waltham with her husband and three young children, and they love to visit new places together and discover the great outdoors.

In the English Learners Department

Maria Afonso-Goddard has been teaching English language learners for over 30 years in Massachusetts.  She has worked as a bilingual, Portuguese and ESL teacher at all grade levels in the public school setting. Maria was born in Portugal and came to U.S.A. when she was six years old. Maria has studied in both Portugal and Brazil. She loves working with English language learners from all over the world and finds her job very rewarding.

In the Physical Education Department

My name is Sara Hazel and I have had many of my current students in the past at the Fowler or Green Meadow schools.  I would add that I am beyond excited to be up at the HS because I really enjoy participating with my students and challenging them to do their best. I am training for my 6th half marathon and enjoy running with kids!

In the World Languages Department

Johnna Little is originally from Lexington and comes to us with 13 years' experience teaching foreign languages in high school and middle school, and with more than 15 years as a professional chef. She studied German and Russian at UMASS Boston and was lucky to have the opportunity to study at universities in both Germany and Russia, and then she chucked it all after graduation and went to live in Italy. Have you been to Italy? Yes? Then you'll understand! Back stateside she got her Masters in Education and started teaching Italian and Spanish. After 10 years, she took a 3 year hiatus in Virginia, which was enough to convince her she was truly a Yankee and she came back in time for the wild winter of 2014, but she smiled while she shoveled: she was home! Johnna lives in Acton, where she cooks (last night was chakhokhbili), sweats through power yoga and hikes with her dog. She is very happy to be a part of Maynard High and is looking forward to meeting everyone!

Our Building Substitute

ANSWER: This new building sub at Maynard High School appeared on Jeopardy! last February.

QUESTION: Who is Shana Macks?

Shana is a 2004 graduate of Simmons College and 2011 graduate of Lesley University, where she earned her Master's in Secondary Education with a focus in History. She comes to Maynard from Boston where she worked at Boston Latin Academy, CollegeBound Dorchester, and the English Language Center. In her spare time, Shana acts in a theater troupe in Arlington and participates as a medieval and Renaissance reenactor with the Society for Creative Anachronism. She is thrilled to join the wonderful students and staff at Maynard High!

In the Guidance Department

Dana MacPhee is excited to be joining Maynard High School as a guidance counselor. She worked in higher education for 5 years and then in Boston as a high school counselor for an additional 5 years before coming to Maynard. In her spare time she loves reading, trying out new recipes (especially baked goods!), and solving puzzles. Her goal in the next five years is to visit all of America's 59 National Parks.

In the TV & Radio Production Department

John Ogden is a graduate of the University of Massachusetts Lowell.  After graduating in 2007 John published his first feature length documentary entitled Fighters: Road to the Golden Gloves, which was broadcast in 2010 on the cable network NESN.  He then worked for three years in both the Lowell and Littleton school systems as a paraprofessional within the special education departments.  Afterwards he moved abroad to Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon), Vietnam for two years where he was the lead high school ELA and film teacher at the School of North America.  During this time he traveled to numerous countries within Asia including Laos, China, Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, Cambodia, Indonesia, Hong Kong, but his favorite was the pristine and wondrous lands of Myanmar.  After fulfilling his two year contract John taught ELA in Lowell prior to acquiring the television and radio broadcast teaching position at Maynard High School.  John has also been the lead coach of the Lowell Catholic boys soccer team, the Littleton varsity track and field team, the Littleton middle school girls soccer team, and founded the audio visual club at Littleton Middle School.  His most rewarding venture will always be interacting with the wonderful people of Vietnam, the stellar views of Sapa, and the lifelong friendships he made with numerous people around the world.  He looks forward to working closely to increase the viewership of WAVM and teaching his students the numerous roles found within the communications fields.

In the History Department

My Name is Cori Sullivan and I am currently teaching eighth grade history. I am a 2009 Maynard High School graduate and extremely excited to be back in Maynard. I am a undergraduate of St. John's University in Queens, New York and a Masters graduate of American International College is Springfield, Massachusetts. One of my favorite parts of high school was playing field hockey and I hope my passion is shown though my time coaching the junior varsity field hockey team here at Maynard. I consider myself a creative person so I am hoping to be able to share that with my students and allow them to express their knowledge in creative projects thought the year. It is my belief that learning can be fun and that is what I am aiming to project upon the students of Maynard in an attempt to make them life-long learners and productive members of our community.

In the Special Education Department

My name is Sherry Trainque I am excited to introduce myself to you as the new Team Chairperson for the Fowler Middle School (grade 6 and 7), Maynard High School and Community Connections. It is my privilege and honor to join Maynard Public Schools and community.  

Prior to joining Maynard Public Schools, I have gained knowledge and skills from a variety of experiences.  As special education teacher, I taught in a residential program for adolescents, sub-separate program for students with emotional/behavioral needs, and as a resource teacher providing specialized supports as well as co-teaching in the inclusion setting.  For the past 7 years, I have worked as a Team Chairperson/ Special Education Director overseeing the special education programming for students with disabilities from Kindergarten to 22 years old.   

On a personal level,  I have two boys at home that keep me busy during my free time with school work, sports, and video games.   I also enjoy watching the Patriots, getting ready for the holidays and spending time with my family and friends.


What a great group of people to be joining the Maynard High School community!  I’m confident that this group will add to the richness and vibrancy of our school and to the entire Town of Maynard as well.  They have already been key contributors to the great start of the year we are experiencing and I’m sure the best is yet to come.  Welcome one and all.

Announcements & Upcoming Events:

MMA High School September Meeting Highlights

·        All are invited to the first ever Jazz and Wind Kick Off Event on Saturday September 24th from 8:30-10:00 at Fish Restaurant and Wine Bar in Marlboro featuring music by the MHS Jazz Band and Wind Ensemble and Blueprint Jazz Club.  Fish will be offering 10% off food for all Maynard Music attendants.  This event is sponsored by Trish Gately.

·        Stay tuned for a Fall Showcase featuring an evening of jazz music performed by our jazz and wind ensemble students.

·        Casino Night organizers are looking for a parent to take the role of Babysitting Coordinator.  If interested please email MMA at (

·        Chaperones are needed to help supervise the Pep Band at the 7pm football games on the following dates:

o   This Friday 9/16

o   September 23rd

o   October 14th

o   October 28th

·        If you are available to chaperone Pep Band, please email MMA at the above address with the date(s) you are available.

·        If you can help fill the following MMA positions, please email the above address:

o   Co-Chair

o   Webmaster –to maintain the 1 MMA site

·        Next meeting is October 4th (not the 5th as originally planned) in the Fowler band room.  Joint Business starts at 7:30, High School business at 8:15

2nd Annual Halloween Costume Fundraiser & Donation

Do you have gently used Halloween costumes that you are ready to part with?

The Class of 2018 will gladly accept your donations of all sizes from 9/9 to 9/23! Please wash costumes before dropping them off in the boxes located in the lobby near the main office of each school. We will host the Halloween Costume Sale on Sunday, 9/25 and will donate all unsold costumes to local charities. Stay tuned for more information about the event!

Please email with any questions.

Back to School Night

This year our annual Back to School Night will be held on Tuesday September 27th from 6:00 to 8:00pm at Maynard High School.  This is a wonderful opportunity to go through your student’s schedule and meet all of  your son’s and daughter’s teachers.

Shortly after 1st quarter report cards are issued another evening will be scheduled for meetings with individual teachers to discuss your child’s progress.  Teacher meetings can also be scheduled at any time by contacting your student’s guidance counselor.

Parent Teachers Organization (PTO)

The Maynard High School PTO will be hosting its first meeting of the year on Wednesday night October 12th from 6:30-8:00pm in the high school Media Center.  Along with myself, Superintendent of Schools Dr. Robert Gerardi and Assistant Superintendent Jennifer Gaudet have graciously agreed to join us and it promises to be an informative and cordial evening.  Please join us!

That’s it for now.

Have a great weekend and take care--

Chuck Caragianes

Principal of Maynard High School