, Derry, New Hampshire

August 8, 2013


Derry News

---- — Charter school organizers seek input

DERRY — Organizers of Granite State Arts Academy are seeking community input on their proposal for an arts-based charter school.

The Friends of Granite State Arts Academy asks that local residents complete an online survey at to gauge interest in the proposed high school.

If granted approval by the state Board of Education next month, the school would open on Route 111 in Derry in August 2014. There would be openings for up to 160 students, according to academy Chairman Wendie Leweck.

More information is available at

Pinkerton graduate receives scholarship

InVEST, an insurance industry classroom-to-career education program, has awarded a $1,000 scholarship to Elizabeth Demers of Pinkerton Academy.

Demers was among 65 students nationally to receive a scholarship.

InVEST contributes to the development of future insurance professionals by educating high school and college students about insurance, risk management and financial services. In high schools, the program offers students a business curriculum which teaches them about the dynamics of insurance agencies and companies.

Nationally, this year InVEST awarded $70,500 in scholarships to 65 college-bound students pursuing insurance-related degrees.

Pinkerton junior nets volunteer honor

Mariah Larocque, 18, of Derry, a junior at Pinkerton Academy, earned a Prudential Spirit of Community Award for 2013.

Larocque was honored for her efforts forming a nonprofit organization that conducts a variety of service projects in her community on a regular basis, including volunteering at a soup kitchen and helping out at an assisted living facility.

Two summers ago, Larocque invited some friends over to her house for pizza and Gatorade. The conversation soon turned to the many problems in society today.

“There was bullying, homelessness, hunger and so much more,” she said. “These kinds of things are what many of our peers are seeing and yet they turn and look the other way.”

The organization We Can Change the World was born and is now going strong with voluneer projects in the community.

The group also set up a website and Facebook page to speak out about bullying and members hope to take the message to elementary and middle schools. Larocque and her teammates also visit nursing homes and assisted living facilities to help residents with a variety of projects and chores.

Architecture awards presented

Local students won awards through the New Hampshire Architecture Foundation Awards Scholarships program.

Matthew Arsenault of Hampstead, a graduate of Pinkerton Academy, won an award as part of his studies in architecture. He is a third-year student at Wentworth Institute of Technology; Pinkerton graduate Stefan Burnett of Derry also took honors. He will enter Wentworth this fall.

Scholarships are granted to students who are currently enrolled or accepted to an accredited undergraduate or graduate professional architecture degree program and who are New Hampshire residents. This scholarship is supported in part by a grant from the AIA Component Matching Grant Program.

The scholarships were presented by Dale Doller AIA, president of the NH Architecture Foundation and immediate past president of AIANH, at a recent joint meeting with Plan NH at the McLane Audubon Center in Concord.