ICS Art Teacher, Casey Everett, is recognized as having an impact, this Women's History Month. 

Islesboro Central School is proud to announce Gaby Zlotkowski, a sixth grader, will serve as a student representative on Maine's Student Cabinet. (Photo attached)

Maine DOE to Host Student Cabinet Meeting on Dec. 2nd 

What: The Maine Department of Education (DOE) has selected 32 Maine students to serve on its new Student Cabinet. The group of students are scheduled to meet quarterly with Commissioner Pender Makin to discuss educational opportunities, improvements, and policy with an in-person meeting to take place on December 2nd. 

The group is comprised of students from all 16 counties in Maine, grades 4 through 1st year of college, from diverse educational experiences. The students were selected through a rigorous team selection process by a committee of students, Maine State Board of Education Representatives, and Maine DOE staff including experienced Maine educators. 

Student Cabinet meetings are intended to allow students from different grade levels, backgrounds, and areas of Maine to share their opinions and offer advice about Maine’s education system with Maine’s Commissioner of Education and other leaders from the Maine Department of Education. The purpose of the Student Cabinet is to provide a forum for Maine students’ voices to be heard. 

The Student Cabinet will be co-chaired by Maine State Board of Education Student Representatives, Casey Maddock and Jaylee Rice, who were both instrumental in the formation of the Student Cabinet.  

Islesboro Central School (ICS) ICS recently celebrated the completion of their solar array. Installed by ReVision Energy, the array will provide the school with 40% of their electricity needs. Staff, students, and community members gathered in a flip the switch ceremony, on Oct. 9th. 

Fifth grader, Jaykob, flipped the switch towards a more fuel efficient school. ICS' curriculum includes a strong focus on best practices regarding sustainability. The solar array is a welcome source of study for students, shrinks the school's carbon footprint, and takes advantage of clean, renewable energy. 

Hurricane Dorian Relief Efforts:
ICS is joining forces with ReVision Energy in efforts to send supplies to hurricane victims in the Bahamas. Our deadline to send supplies is Thursday, Sept. 19. If interested in helping out, please call ICS at 734 2251. 

We gathered a respectable amount of hurricane relief supplies and about $400. The money has been spent on more supplies. Everything has been consolidated, packed, and labeled. A volunteer will drive our cargo van to South Portland tomorrow. Well done, considering the short notice!

Dear ICS Community,                                                                                         5/7/2020

     Islesboro Central School will hold it’s last formal day of remote learning on May 27th, with May 28th reserved for final celebrations in lieu of our traditional field day. Our School Board, as well as ICS’ Teacher Association, voted in favor of ending our classes early in order to focus on several initiatives through the middle of June. The majority of staff and families polled support the decision. Meals will continue to be prepped and delivered to island students until June 10th.

     Students who need additional assistance in meeting standards or remediation of grades will continue working with teachers until June 10th. Students and families who request an extension of structure and support will have the option of continuing their contact with classroom teachers. Parents should contact their children’s individual teachers if they would like continued guidance or scheduling. Laptops will be collected prior to summer vacation.

     Graduation will be held on June 7th, as previously announced. Plans are underway and will reflect past traditions as closely as possible following guidelines set forth by Maine’s CDC and DOE. 

     The remaining weeks of the school calendar will give teachers and staff the time necessary to continue support of students and firm up plans to reopen in the fall. Given these extraordinary times, we will prepare for several contingencies, including a continuation of remote learning. Schools across the state have much to analyze, reflect upon, and plan. Families will also need time to rest, heal, and prepare their own contingency plans. 

     With great pride, I report ICS has served our students and honored our commitment to public education to the very best of our abilities throughout this pandemic. Parents and guardians have worked diligently in partnership with ICS staff on multiple levels. Our deepest gratitude is extended to the teacher/parents at home as we recognize all educators throughout Teacher Appreciation Week.


Be kind and remain Islesboro strong

Chuck Hamm

Dear ICS Community,                                                                                         4/8/2020

     State of Maine’s Commissioner of Education, Pendor Makin, with the support of Governor Mills, recommends continuation of remote/distance learning for the rest of the school year. Given 

the recommendation and taking into account recent events, ICS will continue with remote/distance learning for the remainder of the school year.

     In the words of Commissioner Makin, “It is difficult to make such a recommendation, recognizing the profound challenge of reinventing public education and the many culminating events and rites of passage that educators and students anticipate all year long.”

    While this recent decision may not come as a surprise to some of us, the reality is a bit jarring. Staff and teachers are working diligently to adjust to this new reality. Let us recognize the magnitude of the challenges ahead for educators, families, and students.  We are stronger and wiser together.

      A myriad of testing, including the SAT, will not be offered or required this school year. The Maine DOE is working closely with the university system of Maine to assure fair processes involving online courses and undergraduate opportunities. We are preparing for redesigned celebrations, graduation, and alternative ways to provide both continuity and closure to our students and their families.

     Meal prep and delivery will continue throughout the school year, including the week of April vacation, for those living on the island. More information will be forthcoming as it develops. In the meantime, continue with social distancing, remain flexible, and take care of yourselves and your loved ones.


Be kind and remain optimistic

Chuck Hamm

Dear ICS Community,                                                                                         4/1/2020

     Governor Janet Mills recently announced a shelter in place order for the state of Maine through the month of April. Considering the news, ICS will remain closed to classes until May 1st. 

     Even though our doors will remain closed for now, we continue with virtual classes, counseling, and administration. Meal preparation and delivery will continue on the island. If you would like meals delivered to your child, contact Melissa Burns at Lunches are free to all children.

     Until now, staff have had access to the school building. Given the directive from Governor Mills, we ask that staff refrain from traveling to Islesboro Central School from the mainland unless it is essential. Access to the school and Kinnicutt Center is limited to those employees providing services to the community or cleaning the facility itself.  

     Families and school staff are in constant communication through various digital platforms. Together, we leveraged a significant shift in how education is being delivered. Remote learning has given rise to a troop of parents and guardians, suddenly finding themselves as leading partners in education. Their involvement has been vital throughout this process. Our students continue to persevere despite recent events. They display an eagerness to learn and a desire to connect with their classmates and teachers in spite of the pandemic. Their resilience is admirable.  

     Please join me in practicing social distancing in an effort to stop COVID-19 in its tracks. We encourage families to shelter in place, leaving home only for essentials. We urge students to not see each other in person throughout this month. The virus moves through us. We cannot overstate this point.

      The rest of the school year holds uncertainty for all of us. Students will continue needing our support and guidance, whether in person or virtually. We will be there. 

Let us close by saying we miss our students very much and hope that they are all healthy and safe.

Be kind and remain optimistic.

Chuck Hamm

Shar's Stars by Pia Gibson

Shar’s Stars
Before they left the desert, Shar and her mother would go on an adventure every

Saturday. Their cranky old pickup named Wallace would carry them until they were surrounded by cactuses that were very tall, and that’s where they would stop. Shar and her mother would gather up their picnic supplies and carry them out of Wallace’s bowels and a little ways off into the desert. The sun would be getting ready to set, so Shar and Mom would climb into the grand old sleeping bag and eat their sandwiches and wait for the stars.

Some nights the little orbs took their time, and Shar would start to feel a bit antsy so Mom would have to remind her to be patient. But the stars always showed eventually, and Shar would peer up at them and forget about the gravity tugging down on her. Sometimes Shar felt like the Milky Way was a river that she could swim in.

But star watching didn’t last forever for Shar. These days she is surrounded by the immensity of skyscrapers and smog and bland men in suits. Shar and Mom live in Florida now. They moved because Mom wanted to be closer to her parents, but Florida is moist and full of alligators and palm trees. Shar does not respect palm trees. Shar misses Wallace and cactuses (especially organ pipe cactuses) and dry air. Shar misses the desert, and most of all Shar misses stars. She remembers gazing up into the velvet immensity of the milky way, at stars packed so close together that they looked like a single light. And she remembers Mom’s toes tickling hers as they lay on their backs, Shar’s eyes gaping, drooping, and eventually quivering closed. She hardly ever woke up until after Wallace had puttered them safely back home. Shar wishes Wallace could bring her back to Arizona, but Mom and Shar had to leave him behind when they

moved. Mom said he was getting so old that he might fall apart. Hmm. No proof was ever provided for that statement, and Shar remains skeptical.

The new car’s name is Toyota, which Shar finds uncreative for obvious reasons. Shar is currently peering out of Toyota’s back left window, scowling at palm trees. Mom said they were going on an adventure like the ones they used to have, but that is already untrue because a) they are not in the desert and b) they aren’t puttering about in Wallace. In fact, Toyota doesn’t even have the dignity to putter. It makes a sort of whirring noise that Shar finds disrespectful.

She begins to perk up as Mom drives further away from the city. Palm trees’ enthusiasm is impertinent, in Shar’s opinion, but she does prefer them to skyscrapers.

The sun is getting ready to set by the time Mom parks Toyota on the side of the road. The wave of humidity that hits Shar as she climbs out of the car makes her scowl even more. She figures that if one were to extract the moisture out of the air, just in that little Shar-sized spot, there would probably be enough water to nourish an organ pipe cactus for several months.

Toyota is parked by a large expanse of sand dunes, which are pale and covered with a stiff and pointy sort of grass. If Shar stands on her tip-toes she can see the ocean peeking over the tops of the dunes. Shar is skeptical of the ocean because she doesn’t quite see the point of it.

Mom is rummaging in Toyota’s trunk. After not too long, she pulls out a stack of newspapers, a bundle of cedar shingles, the old sleeping bag, and a bag of sandwiches. Hmm.

Over the dunes they go, Shar carrying the sleeping bag and Mom carrying everything else. By the time they tumble down the last dune and reach the flat sand, the sun is poking at the horizon. Mom and Shar set down their things and Mom says they need to gather driftwood. After tromping around a bit, Shar finds eight pieces of driftwood and drags them over to Mom, one by

one. They leave trenches in the sand behind her. Mom has already gathered driftwood, a lot more than Shar could find, and now she’s crumpling up the newspaper and putting it in a pile on the sand, between two short logs. After a while, Mom looks happy with her newspaper pile and moves on to propping bits of shingles on top of it, leaning them against the driftwood. She shows Shar how to stack layers of driftwood, and then prop more around the outside to make it into a big cone shape, almost as tall as Shar.

Mom reaches into the sandwich bag and pulls out a box of matches. She strikes one, and inserts her hand into the gap left open in the side of the driftwood cone. Shar watches as the crumples of newspaper, deep inside the pile, light. The fire eats them up eagerly, and then the shingles have lit, and then the small pieces of driftwood, and then Mom and Shar have to step back because it’s getting a tad warm around the fire.

Mom tells Shar about why the fire likes that wood structure so much, how it allows just the right amount of air flow. Shar listens and thinks it’s pretty neat.

The sun has set, and the light is almost gone, but Mom and Shar have their bonfire. They climb into the sleeping bag, a little ways off so they don’t get too hot, and they eat their sandwiches.

Shar looks at the fire and the dark sky above it. There are a few stars, but not nearly as many as back home. She barely sighs, but Mom notices and gives her a smile.

“Look up at the flying sparks, Shar,” she says. “Don’t they look like the milky way?”

Hmm, S​ har thinks. I suppose they do.​ She cuddles up against Mom and watches her new stars tread a path against the velvet sky until her eyes quiver closed.

Dear ICS Community,                                                                                         3/22/2020

          Islesboro Central School will be closed to classes until April 27th. We will reassess the situation at that time. The Kinnicutt Center will also remain closed until further notice. I want to update you on recent events and the decision to keep ICS closed until the end of April vacation.

     The school building itself is undergoing a deep clean. Thanks to our Islesboro staff, lunches continue to be prepared and delivered to school-age children living on the island. If you would like meals delivered to your child, contact Melissa Burns at Lunches are free to all school-age children. Please take advantage of this service. It will be one less thing you have to worry about, and we are happy to provide a small measure of comfort. 


     Teachers and counselors continue expanding their online capabilities. Students have adapted quickly to this new style of learning. While online learning is not comparable to classroom education, it is the best option available. Feel free to reach out to your child’s teacher, counselor,  or me with any concerns, suggestions, or questions. 


     Social distancing is the number one way to slow the spread of COVID-19. I ask that we all practice social distancing and limit our contact with people outside our immediate families. Recent cases show that school-age children are more susceptible to complicated symptoms than previously believed. Children can also pass the virus while showing no symptoms themselves. Vigilance is our best defence. 

     These are trying times. I remind all of you to pat yourselves on the back and take a breather. You’re all doing an amazing job given the circumstances. Remember, nature is still out there waiting to embrace us. Walking, reading, listening and supporting each other, are some strategies that will see us through the weeks ahead. Please reach out if you need assistance or have questions. 


Chuck Hamm                                                                                           

Dear parents/guardians,
As you are aware,  we have a break from attending classes for a couple of weeks, possibly longer. We will continue with the delivery of instruction through remote learning. Classes will look and feel differently. Teachers and support staff are working hard to prepare lessons and make themselves available. Most students already have online experiences with many of their teachers and will find the transition familiar. Some will struggle without the structure of the classroom and the dynamics found in groups. Recipes for success include building routines, following the lessons, and maintaining communication with teachers. All students will be receiving information and direction from their teachers soon through emails or phone calls to parents. Please respond promptly.
Make no mistake, we are living in historic times. Practicing social distancing is what separates this event from past school interruptions. We are practicing social distancing for one reason and one reason only, we don’t want to carry the virus and pass it along. Passing it to the elderly or immune deficient could put them at risk. By staying home, we ensure two things; we won’t catch the virus, and we won’t pass it along to the vulnerable. Please help us in our efforts to diminish the spread of this virus by keeping your children away from others for the next couple of weeks. This is the most important measure we can practice in combating COVID-19.
My challenge to all students during this time is to make good decisions and not let this interruption steal away their hard earned progress. Many of our students are absolutely remarkable achievers and give me little concern. Still, some students will undoubtedly struggle. This new reality will require self discipline, focus, and flexibility.
Remind your children to put the phone down… often. We have all been given an opportunity to expand our lives in ways we cannot imagine. The coming weeks will provide opportunities to develop new skills, READ or spend time outside. We live in one of the most pristine and beautiful places on the planet. I implore children to get away from their screens. I suggest listening to music, playing non-electronic games and spending time with family.  Learn to cook a new meal. Try doing a load of laundry, finishing the dishes, or taking care of other household chores. Younger siblings may need extra attention. We are experiencing an unprecedented event. Any help will be appreciated.
We are giving it our all, as the saying goes. I continue to be proud of the student centered approach all members of the ICS family exhibit and will work tirelessly in support of our mission to educate and support all students.
Please reach out if you need assistance or have questions.
Chuck Hamm    

Dear School Community,                                                                           3/15/2020

     Taking into account meetings, emails, and discussions with school leaders and community members, it has been decided to close Islesboro Central School for two weeks beginning March 16th. We will return to school March 30th. Please understand that as things develop, we may decide to extend school closure and families should prepare for such a decision. This closure is not the result of any suspected or confirmed cases of COVID-19 in our immediate communities. This decision was made in consultation with many, and out of an abundance of caution, to follow the rapidly changing guidance regarding enhancing social distancing efforts. Closure of school has not been made lightly and we certainly empathize and understand the significant burden this will cause families in the coming days.

     I appreciate the input many of you have given. Closing school comes at a cost, both figuratively and literally. School officials will continue to work and make ourselves available throughout this period of time. The school will essentially continue functioning with a skeleton crew. Most of the staff will be working remotely with students. The kitchen team, custodial staff, administration and assistants will have much to do. Cafeteria staff are working on plans to deliver lunch or have meals ready for pickup for island children. Special Education and counseling services are also brainstorming ideas in efforts to continue their services. 

     Information will continue to be released as we fine tune plans and address unforeseen aspects of this challenge. We want to communicate news to you as soon as possible so you may begin planning for child care and other concerns that will be raised by this decision. I will be working closely with board members to provide more information as the situation develops. 

     We find ourselves in uncharted waters. The COVID pandemic requires adjustments in planning almost hourly.  Noone has all the answers and we are smarter and stronger together. The ICS community is well prepared and eager to do whatever it takes to support our students and their families. During this closure, we ask that you assist by minimizing group meetings of students and adults. The two greatest steps we can take to protect our communities from the spread of COVID-19 are practicing social distancing and good personal hygiene.

     Finally, we would like to commend each of our stakeholders who are contributing positive energy and dynamic solutions to our schools’ response to this fluid situation. We as a school shall remain composed, collected and compassionate as we navigate through any challenges we face now and in the future.

Below are some helpful websites;

U.S. CDC – includes information on what people need to know about the virus and provides national and international updates

Maine CDC – additional information on the coronavirus and updates specific to Maine

Maine CDC Fact Sheet – provides quick answers to common questions about COVID-19

     In keeping with social distancing protocols, the School Board meeting scheduled for Tuesday evening at 6:15 will be broadcast using a digital platform. A link will be shared through an additional text alert/email. We ask that you attend virtually, if at all possible. If you would like to be added to our alert system, please email Melissa Burns at

In these trying times, remember this year’s school wide theme… kind. 

Chuck Hamm

Head of School 


Dear ICS Community,                                                                                                               3/12/2020

There will be no school for students Monday, March 16th. Staff, however, will attend meetings at school in response to recent developments of COVID-19.

School officials believe this is the most prudent course of action. Specific plans vary from place to place in the country, based on a complex set of factors and infection rates. We want to ensure we have a plan that suits our specific school and greater community.

Cases in Maine are low at the time of this writing, however we expect the numbers will rise. Our next consideration is to balance the effectiveness of suspending classes for a specific period of time, against the loss of all that makes up our school experience. We are keenly aware that the school is a central gathering place for much of the community and social distancing with this virus has become a high priority. Administration, the school board, and staff are working together in the best interests of the entire community as we prepare for various contingencies.

I will continue to share information as the situation develops. Thank you for your understanding, support, and trust in these matters.

Be kind. 


Chuck Hamm Head of School  

Dear School Community,                                                                                        3/12/2020

  In light of the evolving circumstances related to the Coronavirus (COVID-19), I wanted to be sure and let you know we are closely tracking the situation and its potential impact on our students, staff, and community. Minimizing the risk of contracting or passing the virus are the main priorities. ICS Administration is working closely with other Islesboro organizations, the Maine CDC, and the Maine Department of Education. Collectively, our goals are to minimize the chance of the virus spreading on Islesboro, minimize educational disruption, and ensure staff and students understand and practice best preventative measures. The decision to close school will be made with utmost regard for the health, wellness, and safety of students, staff, and the entire school community. 

Prevention:  The CDC recommends frequent handwashing, covering coughs and sneezes, avoid touching one's face and staying home when experiencing flu-like symptoms. Custodial staff have been working diligently cleaning all public areas, common surfaces, and buses. Signage has been added throughout the building as well as additional hand sanitizer and sanitizing supplies. All staff are pitching in to keep their areas sanitary. 


  1. Approval of school trips will be decided on an individual basis. We are not placing direct restrictions at this time, however we are being prudent as the situation is changing daily. 

  2. Senior Trip- Due to the ever-changing status of many European countries, the likelihood of quarantine and exposure to health risk, the senior class trip will not include a European portion. Alternate plans are still to be determined. The trip may end up being domestic as we don’t want to risk a quarantine of staff and students upon return from overseas or expose them to a health risk. A decision will be announced soon. For more information, EF Tours link is here

Building Use: School officials will give serious consideration before approving events. Large events may be postponed or canceled, depending on the current situation. We are asking anyone who has traveled to a country of concern to follow current CDC guidelines and self quarantine as appropriate. 

Personal Travel: Staff and students who travel internationally over April break should check in with the Head of School and our school nurse before returning to ICS. We respectfully ask all our families to follow CDC guidelines at the time of travel and upon returning to Islesboro. All health and medical information is protected by privacy laws under HIPAA regulations and will not be disclosed. 

Possible School Closure:  School closure will occur only through recommendations from the Maine CDC and the Maine Department of Education. ICS will approach school closure with proactive strategies. Should closure be necessary, our goal is to continue educational services. Recently, teachers have received training regarding remote learning and have held grade level meetings in order to develop the strategies for extended distant learning. 

Middle school and high school students will use Google Classroom. Elementary teachers are preparing boxes and folders of classwork. Special Education teachers and Counselors are working on ways to make themselves available as needed. There will be challenges we cannot predict and we ask for your patience and assistance in the coming weeks.

Counseling Department message:

• Children may need extra attention from you and may want to talk about their concerns, fears, and questions. Allow them the time and attention to tell you what's on their mind. 

• Monitor your child's exposure to the media. Constantly watching updates on the status of COVID-19 can increase anxiety, and information designed for adults can cause anxiety or confusion, particularly in young children.

 • If possible, try to stay calm and reassuring. What you say and do about COVID-19 can have an impact on how your child is feeling and reacting to COVID-19.  

• Be honest and accurate with the information you discuss with your child. Review and model basic hygiene and healthy lifestyle practices to help you and your family stay healthy. 

     In the event of a school closure, school recovery will begin when normal supplies, resources and response systems can manage ongoing school activities. The entire school will undergo a deep cleaning guided by public health recommendations prior to school reopening. Communication will continue through our text alert system, phone calls, emails, and social media.  

     The strength of ICS is evident every day. The school community is made up of kindhearted students and staff. Working in tandem with community leaders, Islesboro Central School will weather this challenge with prudence and wisdom.

In these trying times, remember this year’s school wide theme… kind. 


Chuck Hamm

Head of School 



  • 8/4/2020 School Board Meeting, 6:15pm Virtual Link Join with Google by phone(US) +1 314-669-1015 (PIN: 755574234)Islesboro Central School DepartmentSchool Committee MeetingTuesday, August 4 ...
    Posted Aug 1, 2020, 3:23 PM by Melissa Burns
  • Special Board Meeting 7/30/2020 6:15 Join with Google by phone+1 402-736-0225 (PIN: 200616908)
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    Posted Jul 9, 2020, 9:04 AM by Melissa Burns
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Event Calendar

Upcoming Events

Sept. 3 - First Day of School 2019-2020

School Photos - Will be announced soon