Supt. Mary Bourque explaining CHS’s five-year vision during a panel discussion and visit from Gov. Charlie Baker and his administration last Weds., Sept. 5. Baker came to CHS to review and hear about Chelsea’s innovative college credit program in association with Bunker Hill Community College (BHCC).
The Richard and Susan Smith Family Foundation awarded $2.4 million to Bunker Hill Community College (BHCC) to establish the Early College program at BHCC, marking the largest private grant awarded in the College’s history.
The announcement was made in Chelsea Wednesday afternoon at an event celebrating the early college designation to Chelsea High School’s Early College program by the Baker-Polito Administration. Board Members from the Richard and Susan Smith Family Foundation joined Governor Charlie Baker to see firsthand the impact of Early College. At the event, Governor Baker and the legislators in attendance heard from four Chelsea High School students who shared how their experiences in the program influenced their decision to pursue a college-level program.
Transformation to a Consolidated Early College Model
The funding from the Richard and Susan Smith Family Foundation allows BHCC to consolidate its Early College efforts into a core model that anticipates growth in scale and performance, as well as distillation and dissemination of its promising practices to the field. The $2.4 million grant covers a three-year project horizon, and will serve more than 500 high school students, coming from a portfolio of partnerships with high school and community-based organizations in Greater Boston.
“We are so thankful to the Richard and Susan Smith Family Foundation for this extraordinary grant. It allows us to consolidate and scale our early work, to gather data and evidence of success and to make a strong case to the leaders of the Commonwealth that Early College is a viable and scalable solution to talent and economic development,” said BHCC President Pam Eddinger.
An early adopter of Early College, BHCC currently collaborates with seven high schools and community-based organizations, serving nearly 500 early college students in addition to almost 400 participants in dual enrollment. Increasing demand and initial successes with traditionally underserved students and the potential for greater educational equity and student achievement pressed the College to consolidate the Early College efforts into a core model and make it central to the College’s Mission. The grant supports the Early College effort exactly at this important inflection point and gives the College the financial and structural lift to reach the next level of success.
“The Foundation’s Board of Trustees is pleased to be partnering with one of the Commonwealth’s leading community colleges to bring a transformative model proven in other states to Greater Boston. By bridging high school and college experiences, Early College will help many students graduate from high school ready to succeed in college and enjoy the benefits of the Commonwealth’s strong economy,” said Lynne Doblin, Executive Director of The Richard and Susan Smith Family Foundation.
Early College: A Cross-Segment Convergence in Education Strategy
This important work signals a convergence of new thinking from education leaders and policymakers around the State.
“An important goal of the Early College program is exposing students to college-level work while they are still in high school so they can envision themselves on a track toward a college degree,” said Governor Baker at Wednesday’s event. “The college-level experience, combined with the credits they earn in the courses, sets many students up for success by the time they arrive on a campus.”
The Secretary of Education, the Board of Higher Education and the Board of Elementary and Secondary Education all support the effort to recognize Early College work by awarding designations to strong partnerships around the Commonwealth, with the promise of sustainable funding in the near future. These designations, of which BHCC is a part, will stimulate experimentation, document effective practice and demonstrate impact.
The standard-setting work of BHCC’s Early College will be a powerful proof point, and the data to be gathered over the next three years will provide strong evidence as to the efficacy of Early College as a way to increase high school graduation and college completion and broaden career exploration.
Alexander “Lex” Mathews was seen enthusiastically welcoming Chelsea High School students on their first day of
Lex Mathews, new principal of Chelsea High School, is pictured in front of the school sign.
school this week. That personable approach is an indicator of the accessible manner he will bring to his new position of principal.
Mathews, 49, also brings elite academic credentials to the principal’s office, having graduated from prestigious prep school Milton Academy and earned an undergraduate degree from Columbia University, and advanced degrees from Harvard University, and Hunter College in New York City.
Mathews began officially on July 1, succeeding Priti Johari, who is now an assistant superintendent of Chelsea schools. His administrative team at CHS includes Assistant Principals Linda Barber, Kim Murphy, Mark Martineau, and Magali Oldander, ELL Coordinator Deidre Collins, and Special Education Coordinators Alan Beausoleil and Daymon Peykar.
Originally from Alaska and California, Mathews previously served in school principal and assistant principal positions in Somerville, South Boston, Somerville, and the Bronx in New York City. He has 23 years of experience in the field of education.
Mathews will be in charge of the day-to-day operations at Chelsea High which has approximately 1,500 students.
“I strongly believe in teamwork and the idea that every employee in the school matters tremendously to students,” said Mathews. “The principal may seem like a really important person, but to some students, there’s a paraprofessional that matters a lot more than the principal. To some families, there’s a teacher that matters a whole lot more.”
Mathews also believes that for Chelsea High School to be successful, “we have to be able to work together.”
He will expect administrators to be in the hallways “making connections, building community and raising expectations.”
Mathews organized a freshman class trip to Tufts University this summer. “The goal was to get them thinking about college in the ninth grade, instead of waiting for tenth, eleventh, or twelfth grade, because by that time, if you have a bad grade point average, it’s hard to recover,” said Mathews, who is married and has three children.
He is excited to be working with Supt. of Schools Dr. Mary Bourque and the faculty and staff at CHS.
“Dr. Bourque has been supportive, inspirational, accessible – just extremely helpful,” said Mathews. “The other employees have also been inspiring and helpful and all are seeking to make an improvement in the school. I also look forward to any opportunities to meet with members of the community.”
Book bags are replacing beach totes as it quickly becomes time for students to go back to school. Organizing your child’s health information, keeping current with doctor’s appointments and planning for emergency scenarios should be part of every parent’s seasonal routine, the nation’s emergency doctors say.
“We all know about reading, writing and arithmetic. Let’s consider adding a fourth ‘R’ for parents – establishing routine healthy behaviors,” said Paul Kivela, MD, MBA, FACEP, president of the American College of Emergency Physicians (ACEP). “Now is the perfect time to catch up on doctor visits and update your child’s health information. Taking these actions, before an emergency occurs, can help avoid a trip to the ER and possibly save your child’s life.”
Some back to school action items:
Organize your child’s medical history records and emergency medical contact information.
Complete a consent-to-treat form. The form authorizes medical treatment and you should give copies to the school nurse and any day care providers. List prescription medications, medical problems, previous surgeries and pertinent family history. Be sure to update your emergency contact information. Free forms can be downloaded at http://www.emergencycareforyou.org/Be-Prepared/Organize-Your-Important-Medical-Information/.
Work with your school nurse and appropriate care providers to develop action plans for health issues such as asthma or food allergies. Has your child been screened for allergies? Are all vaccines and immunizations current?
Schedule medical and dental check-ups before school starts or as soon as possible. In addition to a routine physical examination, consider vision and hearing tests, since impairment can adversely affect learning. Consider a sports check-up if your child participates in athletics.
If your child walks to school or to a bus stop, review the route with them. Be sure to point out traffic dangers or other potential hazards. For bus riders, establish a safe and clearly visible pick up/drop off spot, preferably with a group of children.
If your child drives to school, make sure he or she obeys all laws and wear seatbelts. Don’t text and drive!
Make sure your child knows how to call for help in an emergency. Emergency contact numbers should be visible right next to every telephone in your home. Encourage your child to learn when to call 911 and give their name, address and a brief description of the problem.
Avoiding backpacks that are too heavy can prevent back and shoulder injuries. And, packing healthy lunches will help your child develop eating habits that ward off obesity, which contributes to a host of emergency and chronic conditions later in life. Try to encourage a consistent sleep schedule, especially for teens.
More health and safety tips are available at www.emergencycareforyou.org.
ACEP is the national medical specialty society representing emergency medicine. ACEP is committed to advancing emergency care through continuing education, research and public education. Headquartered in Dallas, Texas, ACEP has 53 chapters representing each state, as well as Puerto Rico and the District of Columbia. A Government Services Chapter represents emergency physicians employed by military branches and other government agencies.
What better way to introduce the new ordinance allowing food trucks in the city than with a Chelsea Food Truck
City Solicitor Cheryl Watson Fisher (left) and City Hall summer intern Katherine Cabral invite Chelsea residents to attend the first-ever Chelsea Food Truck Festival Aug. 14-16 at the Williams School parking lot.
That’s the path that City Solicitor Cheryl Watson Fisher and City Hall summer intern Katherine Cabral are taking with the city’s first food truck festival that will be held on Aug. 14-16 (Tuesday through Thursday from 11:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.) at the Williams Middle School parking lot at the corner of Arlington and Fifth Streets.
Watson Fisher, head of the Law Department for the city and a graduate of one of the nation’s finest law schools (Boston College), is the chief organizer, while Cabral, a CHS graduate and student at Bates College, is in charge of marketing for the organizing team.
Watson Fisher, who also supervises licenses in Chelsea, drafted the food-truck ordinance, which took one year to develop and gain approval.
“We’re trying with this festival to show that there is a customer base and market for food trucks in Chelsea,” said Watson Fisher. “We also want to get the food trucks here as an event for employees of City Hall. The Williams School is a good location for City Hall employees and other people who also work in the city during the day.”
Several employees from city departments, including licensing, law, DPW, inspectional services, schools, city manager’s office, will be in attendance and interact with the community at the festival.
Representatives from the National Institute of Justice will be conducting a survey at the festival. The Hubcats, which promotes the well-being of cats, will have an information table. The Archery, Limebikes, and Carter Park Crossfit are among the local businesses participating in the festival. There will be music and a possible appearance of the Chelsea Police “Copsicle” truck.
Attendees will have a wide of variety foods available for purchase, according to Watson Fisher.
“We’ll have a Chilean food truck, a Vietnamese food truck, a gluten-free, vegan truck, an American barbecue truck, as well as tacos, sausages, hot dogs, and hamburgers, and desserts,” said Watson Fisher.
Cabral said the festival will help determine which type of food trucks might be popular if the trucks were stationed here on a daily basis.
“We’re bringing in a big variety of food trucks to see what the people want going forward and whether the food truck operators are interested in collaborating with Chelsea,” said Cabral.
Though Watson Fisher is ready to review applications for food truck licenses and to potentially grant them, there are no food trucks currently operating in the city.
“We have allowed food trucks at certain events,” said Watson Fisher. “But at this point there are no food trucks operating in the city.”
Cabral believes the festival will ignite an interest in food trucks wanting to set up shop in the city.
“We really do want this event to be a springboard for food trucks to come to Chelsea and to expose our dayworkers to see this an opportunity to try new things, so we’re super excited to hold such a multi-faceted event in our city,” said Cabral.
Encore Boston Harbor and the Chelsea Collaborative started the first of many monthly job fairs last Thursday, Aug. 2, at the Collaborative’s Broadway headquarters.
The Collaborative’s Sylvia Ramirez said they want to make sure Chelsea residents can benefit from the 4,000 full-time casino jobs that are coming in June 2019, and time is of the essence.
She said Encore will begin coming to the Collaborative to discuss and assist potential applicants with the process. The first such meeting came last Thursday, and Ramirez said the next one will be Aug. 30.
“The Collaborative has a workforce development department and we are trying to forge partnerships for financial sustainability and better jobs,” she said. “We are collaborating with businesses around the community. It also has a lot to do with the casino. We want to teach career readiness so they can be prepared when the jobs come down the pipeline.”
Ramirez said the casino is going to affect Chelsea as much as it will Everett and Charlestown, and with that in mind, she said residents should be ready for the jobs that will be coming very soon. She also said Chelsea is falling behind, and now is the time to get ahold of the opportunities.
“This is the beginning of the conversation,” she said. “I don’t want to be behind on this. I think Everett is so far ahead of us with the Everett United organization. We need a coalition as well. We don’t know what it’s called, but we need to set goals and metrics to advocate for our Chelsea residents. Everett doesn’t have 4,500 people available to hire.”
By bringing in representatives from Encore once a month, Ramirez said it ensures that the company will commit to Chelsea. The city does have preference in line with Boston and Cambridge. Only Everett and Malden come ahead of Chelsea.
“We want to make sure they really commit to us and give some opportunities to our people. Just because some of our people in Chelsea have limited language, it doesn’t mean they can’t do a job there.”
Representatives from Encore will be able to help residents one-on-one in English and Spanish. They will be able to define the jobs that are available and what one needs to do to qualify for those jobs. Likewise, they will be discussing the new “dealer school” that is about to start at Cambridge College in Charlestown. The six-week course will begin in the fall, with applications coming soon.
Meanwhile, Ramirez said the casino jobs Ð whether in the gaming area or in non-gaming functions Ð can provide a better income to help solve the rising housing costs in the city.
“Anyone who lives in Chelsea, they pay $1,500 in rent now and they’ll likely be paying $2,500 in the next few years,” she said. “ How can they keep up? They need to stay in the city and have jobs like these that pay well.”
John Winam points himself out in one of Arnie Jarmak’s historic Chelsea Record photographs during the opening reception for Gallery 456 on Monday, July 16. The show was the first for the City-sponsored gallery in the old Salvation Army Store. Jarmak was a staff photographer for the Record in the 1970s and captured thousands of images of the city and its people. His show will be displayed at Boston College later this year, but will remain in Chelsea through September.
Linda Champion has announced her intention to run for the position of Suffolk County District Attorney. The following is her statement:
“We are prosecuting people but we are not prosecuting the conditions that exist in our society that cause a person to act out: poverty, substance abuse, trauma and ptsd. In order to prevent crime we need to focus on jobs, education, and housing, these tools have been my core focus over the past 15 years. I will roll up my sleeves and get the work done.” – Linda Champion
Linda Champion is a seasoned litigator, former Suffolk County prosecutor, and community builder who is seeking to be the first Korean-African American woman ever elected to office in Massachusetts.
The daughter of an African-American war veteran and a Korean immigrant mother who met while he was fighting in Vietnam, Linda was raised in Louisiana and Texas before moving to Lowell in the late 1980s. Her father suffered from the effects of the war and she and her sister were raised by their mother. The family struggled with discrimination, poverty and homelessness as her mother worked two jobs to provide for her daughters. Linda graduated from Lowell Middlesex Academy, and she moved to Boston alone, when she was 18 and homeless.
She is a graduate of Newbury College, Suffolk University and Suffolk Law School. She served for two years as an assistant district attorney under Suffolk County District Attorney Dan Conley, prosecuting criminal cases in juvenile court, Dorchester and Roxbury District Courts. She was promoted to Superior Court prosecutor in 2013 and worked in the Elder and Disabled Victims Unit. She is currently on leave of absence from the Massachusetts Department of Industrial Accidents where she has served since 2013 as an assistant general counsel representing the Workers Compensation Trust Fund.
Prior to her public service, she worked as a private attorney, specializing in consumer protection, real estate law, community development and helping first-time homebuyers overcome financial and discriminatory barriers to housing. She’s also partnered with the City of Boston to teach home ownership programs and been a board member for a subsidiary of the affordable housing nonprofit organization Urban Edge.
Linda has also volunteered for several charitable organizations, including fundraising for Thompson Island, The Dimock Center and served five years on the board of Newbury College and Chung Changing Lives, a nonprofit co-founded by Cecelia Chung that provided free music, athletic and academic programs to adolescents. Linda lives in Hyde Park with her family.
Salary increases. Increase salaries of Assistant District Attorney to a livable living wage. Currently the average hourly salary for entry level prosecutors is about $22.00 per hour. Most of the entry-level prosecutors and victim witness advocates have wages that are totally inadequate. The starting salary for Assistant District Attorneys range from $42,000 – $50,000. Many of these public servants due to the cost of living and student loans are forced to work two-jobs which impacts their ability to focus on the job at hand. We must increase the starting salaries to a minimum of $65,000 – $75,000.
Diversity. As an assistant district attorney I learned that most of my colleagues had little to no personal experiences with communities of color outside their employment. Because they lacked real world experiences with people of different race, ethnic and cultural backgrounds often their perceptions of an individual’s actions were biased. In order to build relationships within the communities we serve and to ensure that justice is equal we have to transform the Office of the District Attorney to reflect the community we serve and affirm the value of our communities of color. This starts with addressing our own race bias through engagement and training to understand the types of violence facing black, brown and indigenous Americans.
Crime Prevention. In order to maintain safe neighborhoods we have to work with the residents in the community. The residents have to feel safe and protected so they can report crime. To create a safe environment we have to a establish a victim and witness protection program that goes beyond giving a person a ride to court and a list of resources to contact. We need a program that includes mental health services to housing relocation and assistance. For residents to feel safe to come forward with information I have to continue to work as a community builder to solidify relationships between the community, undocumented residents and law enforcement professional. One overarching goal is to work with homicide detectives to expand the cold team and to work through cold cases to bring the survivors of homicide closure. This is to identify and segregate those dangerous persons who pose a threat to our safety and the well-being of others. Aside from allocating sufficient resources to witness protection, this policy requires working with law enforcement to increase resources available to detectives and to grow number of detectives assigned to the homicide cold case squad.
Saturday, July 21, 2018
12 – 4 p.m.
184 Dudley St., Boston, MA, 02119
Cookout with the Candidates, meet the candidates running for County, Statewide, and Federal office.
CHELSEA RESIDENTS GRADUATE FROM NORTHEAST METRO TECH
School Committee Chairman Deborah Davis and Principal Carla Scuzzarella are pleased to announce the graduation of 292 students from Northeast Metro Tech.
On Friday, June 1, graduates from 15 different vocations were celebrated and received their diplomas during a graduation ceremony at Breakheart Stadium.
Superintendent David DiBarri encouraged students to seek out leadership opportunities as they grow in their professional and personal lives — by pursuing management roles, joining their trade’s union or becoming a coach of their favorite sport.
“The United States is still the greatest country on earth but it is up to you and future generations to ensure that we continue to get better and better,” Superintendent DiBarri said. “Please remember that you will always be a member of the Northeast family. It is our hope that in the years to come that all of you will have some connection to Northeast.”
Graduating students from Chelsea include:
Eduard Ajtum Caal
Luis Barillas Natareno
Mathias Bermudez Galeano
Samuel Cantor Hernandez
Katerin Contreras Artica
Jaylene Coreas Carballo
Christian DeJesus Franco
Juleann Diniz Gomes
Genesis G. Escalante Rosales
Maryanne Funes Martinez
Roberto Funes Martinez
Lindsey Garcia Gallegos
Allan Garza Romero
Sarai Hernandez Martinez
Yorick Jimenez Zelaya
Jose Lopreto Hernandez
Madeline Martinez Fajardo
Emerson Meda Vasquez
Corey J. O’Neil
Jacqueline Pablo Lopez
Diego O. Rivera-Molina
Adiarys Rojas Hernandez
Diego Roque Romero
Jerry Ruiz Manzano
Trang T. Tran
Salutatorian Raymond Borden, of Winthrop, spoke in rhymes about his time at Northeast, paying tribute to a fellow salutatorian, Dr. Seuss.
“You’re sad that you’re leaving, it’s a shame you have to go, but no more home work or classwork, how could you say no?” Borden said to his peers. “…You did it, and whether by stumble or stride, you’ll do what you have to to get by. The brain is not for getting A’s and B’s, but for seizing lifetime opportunities. That’s my knowledge I impart to you, and with my final rhyme, I bid thee adieu.”
Class President Rebecca Corbett, of Revere, thanked everyone — from students’ families, to their teachers and staff, to her classmates — for making the last four years at Northeast so successful.
“This is it — this is the beginning of what we want to make our future,” Corbett concluded. “Whether you are going to further your education, or work in your trade, I believe that each and every one of you will do great things and be great people. Keep taking care of each other like family, and as a reminder, this is not goodbye, it’s see you later.”
LOCAL STUDENT WINS AWARD
Lucy Platero-Martinez, from Chelsea and a student at Northeast Metropolitan Regional Vocational High School won one of the nation’s highest awards at the 2018 SkillsUSA Championships, held in Louisville, Ky., on June 27-28. More than 6,300 students competed at the national showcase of career and technical education. The SkillsUSA Championships is the largest skill competition in the world and covers 1.4 million square feet, equivalent to 20 football fields or 25 acres. Students were invited to the event to demonstrate their technical skills, workplace skills and personal skills in 102 hands-on occupational and leadership competitions including robotics, automotive technology, drafting, criminal justice, aviation maintenance and public speaking. Industry leaders from 600 businesses, corporations, trade associations and unions planned and evaluated the contestants against their standards for entry-level workers. Industry support of the SkillsUSA Championships is valued at over $36 million in donated time, equipment, cash and material. More than 1,900 industry judges and technical committee members participated this year. Skill Point Certificates were awarded in 72 occupational and leadership areas to students who met a predetermined threshold score in their competition, as defined by industry. The Skill Point Certificate is a component of SkillsUSA’s assessment program for career and technical education.
Platero-Martinez was awarded a Skill Point Certificate in Esthetics. “More than 6,300 students from every state in the nation participated in the 2018 SkillsUSA Championships,” said SkillsUSA executive director Tim Lawrence. “This showcase of career and technical education demonstrates our SkillsUSA partnership at its finest. Our students, instructors and industry partners work together to ensure that every student excels. This program expands learning and career opportunities for our members.” The SkillsUSA Championships event is held annually for students in middle school, high school or college/postsecondary programs as part of the SkillsUSA National Leadership and Skills Conference. More than 360,000 students and advisors join SkillsUSA annually, organized into more than 18,000 sections and 53 state and territorial associations.
LOCAL STUDENTS GRADUATE FROM MGH INSTITUTE OF HEALTH PROFESSIONS IN BOSTON
The following students received a degree from MGH Institute of Health Professions in Boston.
* Yovianna García Alvarado, who lives in Chelsea, received a Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree.
* Eva Wong Trinh, who lives in Chelsea, received a Doctor of Occupational Therapy degree.
* Joshua Merson, who grew up in Chelsea, received a Master of Science in Health Professions Education degree.
Flor Amaya, who grew up in Chelsea, received a Doctor of Physical Therapy degree.
* Mariolino Fernandes, who grew up in Chelsea , received a Master of Physician Assistant Studies degree.
They were among the 583 students in the Class of 2018 who graduated from the Boston health sciences graduate school in May. The MGH Institute has educated more than 7,700 health care professionals since its 1977 founding. About MGH Institute of Health Professions Team-based care, delivered by clinicians skilled in collaboration and communication, leads to better outcomes for patients and clients. That’s why MGH Institute of Health Professions makes interprofessional learning a cornerstone of all its programs. Approximately 1,600 students at its Charlestown Navy Yard campus in Boston learn and collaborate in teams across disciplines as they pursue post-baccalaureate, master’s, and doctoral degrees in nursing, occupational therapy, physical therapy, physician assistant studies, speech-language pathology, health professions education, and a PhD in rehabilitation sciences. The interprofessional learning module extends to hundreds of hospital, clinical, community, and educational sites throughout Greater Boston and beyond. The MGH Institute, which has graduated more than 7,700 students since it was founded in 1977, is the only degree-granting affiliate of Partners HealthCare, New England’s largest health provider. It is fully accredited by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges (NEASC). Several programs are highly ranked by U.S. News & World Report. For the past four years, the IHP has been named to the Honor Roll in The Chronicle of Higher Education’s “Great College to Work For” annual survey, and has been named a Great College for eight consecutive years.
CHELSEA STUDENTS ON DEAN’S LIST AT BOSTON UNIVERSITY
Two Chelsea residents have recently been named to the Dean’s List at Boston University for the Spring semester.
Students recognized for this honor include: Sara Beqo, Lia C. Ring.
Each school and college at Boston University has their own criterion for the Dean’s List, but students generally must attain a 3.5 grade point average (on a 4.0 scale), or be in the top 30 percent of their class, as well as a full course load as a full time student.
LOCAL STUDENTS RECEIVE DEGREE FROM SIMMONS COLLEGE
The following local students recently earned a degree from Simmons College in Boston.
* Meta Partenheimer, of Chelsea, earned a Master of Science in Library and Information Science (Archives Management).
* Kirsten Goodman, of Chelsea , earned a Master of Science in Nursing (Family Nurse Practitioner).
* Maria Pelosi, of Chelsea , earned a Master of Social Work
Simmons College ( www.simmons.edu ) is a nationally recognized private college located in the heart of Boston. Founded in 1899, Simmons is the only undergraduate women’s college in Boston, and maintains a history of visionary thinking and a focus on social responsibility. Follow Simmons on Twitter at @SimmonsCollege and @SimmonsNews.
ROMERO NAMED TO SIMMONS COLLEGE DEAN’S LIST
Dariela Lizbeth Romero, Chelsea was named to the 2018 spring semester dean’s list at Simmons College in Boston.
Simmons College ( www.simmons.edu ) is a nationally recognized private college located in the heart of Boston. Founded in 1899, Simmons is the only undergraduate women’s college in Boston, and maintains a history of visionary thinking and a focus on social responsibility. Follow Simmons on Twitter at @SimmonsCollege and @SimmonsNews.
Every time Chelsea High girls track coach Mark Martineau set a goal for Stephanie Simon this season, the 5-foot-4-inch sophomore eclipsed it.
Stephanie Simon is on her way to another victory for the Chelsea High girls track team.
“I think Stephanie exceeded our expectations to the point that we don’t know what the expectations should be for Stephanie,” said Martineau, who has piloted the CHS track program’s resurgence and helped Simon develop in to its marquee performer.
Simon just completed an outdoor track season that was unprecedented in school history. She was the Commonwealth Athletic Conference MVP in the track and field events at the CAC Meet and the season-long honoree. She set six school records and won every event in which she competed, with the exception of one. Her older sister, Martine, an All-State performer heading to Mass. College of Art, edged her out one time in the triple jump.
Stephanie qualified for the Division 1 State Meet in six events (high jump, triple jump, long jump, 100 meters, 200 meters, and 100-meter hurdles). She entered three events in the Division 1 Meet and finished second in the triple jump, third in the high jump, and third in the 100-meter dash.
Competing in the New Balance Nationals at North Carolina A & T State University against the trop track athletes in the country, Simon placed 15th in the high jump and 27th in the triple jump.
Martineau believes Simon’s improvement has been striking and that her future is exceedingly bright.
“Stephanie has improved a ton from freshman to sophomore year, which leads us to believe that there is more room to grow,” said Martineau. “It’s hard to predict what her ceiling is.”
So who is this emerging superstar that is already drawing comparisons to Autumn Lopez, Denise Chappell, Kristin Rosa, Tiffany Moore, Katrina Hill, Nancy Pilcher, Laurie Taraskiewicz, Minerva Cruz, and Loreen Bradley – some of the greatest female athletes to wear the CHS uniform?
Stephanie is the 16-year-old daughter of Hubert and Mathilde Simon, who are of Haitian descent. Both parents played soccer in Haiti. Stephanie attended the Early Childhood Learning Center, the Berkowitz School and the Clark Avenue Middle School. In addition to an older sister, Martine, she has an older brother, Norbert, a graduate of CHS and UMass/Boston and a former CHS track athlete, and a younger brother, Emmanuel, who will be a freshman at CHS.
What is Stephanie Simon’s best track event?
“The high jump is my favorite event, but my best event is the triple jump,” she said.
Simon is already raising the bar for next season.
“My goal for the high jump is to jump 5-6 by the end of indoor season and 5-8 in the outdoor season. For the triple jump, I want to be able to jump 38 feet consistently and in the 100 meters, I want to be in the high, 11-seconds. And we’re going to try out the 400 meters next year,” she said confidently.
She views her sister, Martine, as a role model and a motivating influence in her track career.
“Martine taught me in my freshman year the do’s and don’ts and I appreciate all that she has done for me,” said Stephanie.
The MVC (Most Valuable Coach) in her athletic career is Martineau, without a doubt. Martineau, however, is stepping down as coach to be the Grade 9 assistant principal at CHS.
“Coach Martineau has been an incredible mentor who has brought out all the excellence in me and I’m definitely going to miss him as my coach,” said Stephanie, with emotion in her voice. She added that she was also appreciative of CHS Athletic Director Amanda Alpert’s support and encouragement.
College coaches are becoming aware of Stephanie Simon’s record-breaking accomplishments. A good student, Simon is looking at such prestigious institutions as Amherst College, Smith College, and Tufts University.
“I’m only a sophomore and I believe I can get better,” said Stephanie.