Washington County Retired Teachers Meet

By Mary McFadden

With eight members and two guests present, the Washington County Retired Teachers Association met on Thursday, August 20 at the Bluebird Restaurant in Machias.  President Hazel Hammond opened the meeting and led the group in the Pledge of Allegiance and the Lord’s Prayer. 

Secretary Nancy Willey reported the minutes of the July meeting which included an explanation of LD86 concerning COLA increases.  During that meeting, the national Day of Caring was discussed with members volunteering to do a task at a local school.  Suggested speakers for the 2016 meeting season were mentioned, and Charlene Myers presented her doll collection. Treasurer Barbara Maloy said that there had been one additional new member’s dues added to last month’s total.  Ruth Chaffey and Dawn Noonan are working on updating the membership list, and several names were added to the necrology list.  Copies of the by-laws were distributed.  University of Maine Machias graduates were reminded of the meeting concerning the alumni association is scheduled for Thursday, September 3 at 4 o’clock in Science 103. There will be a Leadership Academy in Waterville on October 5.

Diane Tilton, Director Down East Institute for Applied Research  in Education, and Colleen Haskell, Educator at DEI, were the featured speakers for the meeting.  Diane gave an outline of the development of the Down East Institute, which is located on Great Wass Island on Beals Island and how it conducts applied research on commercially important shellfish, such as lobster, clams, quahogs, etc. and tests new shellfish products.  Colleen developed curriculum to use with students when they come to the institute to study during the summer camps which are held there.  The curriculum is based on staff research, and the students test hypotheses, make graphs, read, do measurements, and collect data as well as take specimens back to their classrooms.  The problem of green crabs is not decreasing as they are very aggressive, but their byproducts can be used as animal feed.


The next meeting of the group, which is open to retired educators and school staff, will be on Thursday, September 17 at 10 o’clock at the Bluebird Restaurant.