1. Back to School Extravaganza 2014!

    August 26, 2014 by KJG

    The Peabody Education Foundation will once again help kick off the school year with the 5th annual Higgins Extravaganza. Join us from 3:00-4:30 pm at the Higgins Middle School on Wednesday, August 27, when the lists for this year’s cluster assignments will be posted. Treadwell’s Ice Cream has donated ice cream sundaes, and there will be lots of information to make this school year the best yet. Hope to see you there!

  2. PEF Celebrates Peabody Educators with George Peabody Legacy Awards

    May 22, 2014 by KJG

    On May 15, the Peabody Education Foundation hosted its second annual George Peabody Legacy Award ceremony in the Wiggin Auditorium at Peabody City Hall. Several hundred people came together to celebrate the accomplishments of the six award recipients: Robert Cavanaugh, Elaine Espindle (posthumously), Carolyn McGray, Andrew Metropolis, Margaret Murphy, and Joseph O’Malley.

    One thing made abundantly clear by those who introduced each recipient was the impact each educator had on the students they taught and the lives they touched. Each recipient spoke of their experiences in education and shared anecdotes and fond memories of their time spent in the Peabody school system. The Peabody Education Foundation is honored to recognize the legacy of these educators, and we congratulate them each on their successful and prolific careers in Peabody and beyond.

    George Peabody Legacy 2014

    The 2014 George Peabody Legacy Award recipients, with PEF chairman David Gravel and co-chair Tom Gould

  3. The Big Bad Book Sale

    April 29, 2014 by admin

    On Saturday, May 10th, the Second Congregational Church in Peabody will host “The Big Bad Book Sale” to benefit the Peabody Education Foundation. Please stop by to browse through their collection of used books of all kinds and genres, and show your support for the PEF!

    When: Saturday, May 10th from 9 AM – 1 PM

    Where: Second Congregational Church, 12 Maple St., Peabody, MA

    Why: To Benefit the Peabody Education Foundation


  4. Peabody Education Foundation Announces George Peabody Legacy Award Winners for 2014

    April 26, 2014 by admin

    The Peabody Education Foundation has released the names of 6 recipients who will receive the Annual George Peabody Legacy Award this year.  The recipients are: Margaret Murphy, Joseph O’Malley, Robert Cavanaugh, Andrew Metropolis, Carolyn McGray, and Elaine Espindle (posthumously).  Recipients were selected from among dozens of nominations made by the public. These individuals are being recognized for the lasting impact that they have made on the education of our students and the educational system in Peabody.  An award ceremony will be held on Thursday, May 15th at 6:00 PM at the Wiggin Auditorium, Peabody City Hall, Peabody MA.  If you are interested in attending the ceremony, tickets may be acquired by contacting David Gravel at (978) 538-9055, or email daveg@gravoc.com.  Ticket prices are $35 per person and include a light meal and cash bar.

    For more information on tickets and sponsorship opportunities, please download the George Peabody Legacy Award Sponsorship Form here.


  5. 2014 George Peabody Legacy Award

    February 21, 2014 by admin

    “My earnest wish is to promote at all times a spirit of harmony and good will in society, my aversion to intolerance, bigotry and party rancor, and my enduring respect and love for the happy institutions of our prosperous republic.”

    – George Peabody, September 1866

    The city’s namesake, George Peabody, was a successful, self-educated entrepreneur who became the world’s first international philanthropist.









    • Lives or works in Peabody
    • Has had a lasting impact on education
    • Tireless advocate for the betterment of Peabody students
    • Is an active member in the Peabody Community
    • Effects change for the good of the people over a significant period of time

    **Award may be posthumously

    Please tell us why you are nominating this person for this award.  The Peabody Education Foundation (PEF) will make the final selections.  The recipients will be honored at our first annual award ceremony in May.


    All nominations must be received on or before March 15, 2014.

    Remember to include your name, address, and telephone number on all nominations in order that we may verify information or request a testimonial and/or pictures.

    Mail/Email/Fax Nominations to:
    Peabody Education Foundation, P.O. Box 233, Peabody, MA 01960
    978.538.9066 (fax)

    Click here to download the PDF

  6. Calendar Raffle Winners: November 17-November 23

    November 25, 2013 by KJG

    As part of ongoing fundraising efforts, the Peabody Education Foundation created and sold a raffle calendar for the month of November. All proceeds from the calendar will go toward programs to support Peabody’s public schools.

    The third round of winners for the November 2013 Calendar Raffle have been drawn and are as follows:

    Date Prize Name
    November 17 Overnight at Peabody Marriott & Breakfast at Sophia’s Priscilla Dalton
    November 18 $25 Cheesecake Factory Gift Card Kim Bento-Lignos
    November 18 $25 CVS Gift Card Laurie Indelicato
    November 19 $25 Westside Restaurant Gift Card Madison Talbot
    November 20 $25 Sugar Cane Gift Card Shannon Dube
    November 20 Ice Cream Cake from Goodies Michael Schrimpf
    Novemeber 21 $25 Shaw’s Gift Card Susan Gajeski
    November 22 $25 Treadwell’s Gift Card Teresa Losanno
    November 23 $25 Lowes Gift Card Henry Breckenridge

  7. Calendar Raffle Winners: November 10 – November 16

    November 18, 2013 by KJG

    As part of ongoing fundraising efforts, the Peabody Education Foundation created and sold a raffle calendar for the month of November. All proceeds from the calendar will go toward programs to support Peabody’s public schools.

    The second round of winners for the November 2013 Calendar Raffle have been drawn and are as follows:

    Date Prize Name
    November 10 $25 Sugar Cane Gift Card Sheila Budomo
    November 10 $30 Maison Esthetique Spa Gift Card Donna D’Amico
    November 11 Lunch with Superintendent Joseph Mastrocola Thais Aguiar
    November 12 $25 Burtons Grill Gift Card Judy Richards
    November 13 One Month Membership at B & S Fitness Tammy Brunet
    November 14 $50 Stonewood Tavern Gift Card Keith Perrin
    November 15 $25 Kohl’s Gift Card Beverly Malvitch
    November 15 $25 Nail Studio Gift Card Melissa Couture
    November 16 4 Tickets to “A Christmas Carol” at North Shore Music Theatre Debbie Gigante

  8. Calendar Raffle Winners: November 1 – November 9

    November 9, 2013 by KJG

    As part of ongoing fundraising efforts, the Peabody Education Foundation created and sold a raffle calendar for the month of November. Each day brings a new opportunity to win a prize, such as gift cards to local businesses, tickets to the North Shore Music Theatre, an overnight stay at the Peabody Marriott, and more. Winners will be contacted about their prizes and will be announced weekly on our website, so be sure to check back and see if you’ve won! All proceeds from the calendar will go toward programs to support Peabody’s public schools.

    The first round of winners for the November 2013 Calendar Raffle have been drawn and are as follows:

    Date Prize Name
    November 1 $25 Fauci’s Pizza Gift Card Kay O’Conner
    November 1 $25 Edible Arrangements Gift Card Isabel Bettencourt
    November 2 $50 Stonewood Tavern Gift Card Patti Schaffer
    November 2 $25 Treadwell’s Gift Card Lorraine Whitney
    November 3 $50 Northshore Mall Gift Card Kirk Neumann
    November 3 $25 Burtons Grill Gift Card Erica Barrett
    November 4 Salem Hysteria Pass Sheri Farnum
    November 5 $25 New Brothers Deli Gift Card Christina Rothwell
    November 5 $25 Westside Family Restaurant Gift Card Peyton Smith
    November 6 $25 Wardhurst Grille Gift Card Deborah Morais
    November 6 $25 Starbucks Gift Card Debra Fawcett
    November 7 $25 Kelly’s Roast Beef Gift Card Nancy Robie
    November 7 $25 Cheesecake Factory Gift Card Heidi Denisco
    November 8 $25 P.F. Chang’s Gift Card Sarah Monsini
    November 9 $50 Gift Card towards Membership at B&S Fitness Jaclyn Staunton

  9. Six recipients named for George Peabody Legacy Award

    March 1, 2013 by KJG

    The recipients of the first annual George Peabody Legacy Award were announced on Thursday, February 28 at the Peabody City Council meeting. Peabody Education Foundation Chairman Dave Gravel, who is also a Councilor-at-Large, noted that the committee received 19 individual nominations for the award, with many nominees receiving more than one vote from community members. The PEF introduced the award and initiated the nomination process earlier this year with a desire to honor educators who contributed significantly to Peabody’s schools and the community as a whole.

    Of the 19 nominees, the PEF has selected six individuals to receive the first George Peabody Legacy Awards. These individuals will be honored in an event at City Hall on Thursday, May 2; additional details of that event will be available shortly. Gravel commented that the six recipients each represented the type of positive impact on the community that the award aims to recognize, and that all six “have given their full careers to this city.”

    The six recipients are as follows:

    • John E. Murtagh  – John’s entire career was dedicated to the Peabody Public Schools starting as a Teacher at the Keefe School, serving as Assistant Principal at the Keefe School and Principal at the Burke School, and finishing his career as a principal of the Higgins Middle School.  John was also employed under Title 1 with the Migrant Education Program as a program organizer, curriculum specialist, and a liaison for the Department of Education.  Among his many achievements were the development of staff, the development of children, coaching, advocating and putting the concerns of education in the City at the forefront of his agenda.  John was instrumental in establishing the Middle School structure which still stands today, and was instrumental in the transition to education reform during its infancy.
    • John “Jack” Murtagh – A lifelong Peabody resident who spent his entire career in the Peabody Public Schools.  Another Murtagh who worked his way through the ranks from teacher to principal and ended his career in the schools system as the principal of the Kiley School.  Jack,  who was often referred to as “Big Jack,” was described as a gentleman in all aspects of his life.  The teachers and students who nominated Jack talked about his caring for his staff and his students and his genuine concern for ensuring “his” students got the best education.  Jack is still very active in the community, volunteering at the Council on Aging and the Torigian Life Center, and is a member of the Peabody Credit Union Board of Directors.
    • Helen Apostolides – Helen served the Peabody Public Schools for 34 years, finishing her career in Peabody as an administrator and Principal of the Welch School.  Among her many accomplishments was assisting with the establishment of the Pride in Peabody award; she served as the Pride in Peabody K-12 coordinator for 12 years.  She was a regular volunteer at any Peabody event, championed the gifted and talented program, implemented the Baystate Readers Program and Empowering Children to Survive and Succeed Program.  Helen is also credited with the development and implementation of the first full day kindergarten program in the City.  A renaissance woman, Helen was a hardworking, dedicated champion for the children of Peabody.
    • Frank Hardy -  Having spent in excess of three decades in the Peabody Public Schools, Frank Hardy retired from the school system as a Department Head.  Frank is known as the person who resurrected Student Government Day in Peabody, and anyone who has attended or participated in one of these events can tell you how significant this is to the development of our student’s understanding of government.   Mr. Hardy working with Andrew Metropolis launched the Peabody Exchange Program.  He also spearheaded PVMHS ROTC, Human rights Awareness Day, and the Hugh O’Brien Youth Leadership Award.  Frank still works as a tireless volunteer for the community serving his church and working with North Shore Elder Services.  Frank hardy is an educator and a great human being whose work has touched many lives in the city.
    • Tom Hosman – A veteran of 38 Years with the Peabody Public Schools, Tom graduated from the classroom to the guidance office where he sought to shape the lives of the students under his care.  Tom was a guidance councilor at the Kennedy, the High School and the Higgins. Tom earned the respect of students and families alike by showing and teaching respect.  He had a passion for education and conveyed this to all around him.  He too was a long time coach and a friend to many creating a lasting impression on all those who had the pleasure of knowing him.  Tom continues to support the students of the Peabody Public schools with encouragement at the many sporting events that he attends.
    • James Geanoulis (awarded posthumously) – Known to his students and friends alike as Mr. G, Jimmy Geanoulis was a caring, gentle person who was loved by his  students, his peers, and his superiors.  No job was too large or too small for Jim.  He knew how to extract the best out of every student by making his classes interesting and fun.  Those who nominated Jim spoke of his passion for education and for instructing children.  He took this passion to the classroom as well as to the sports fields, where he was a coach and a referee.  While many people say “it’s for the kids,” few mean it as much as Mr. G did.  He was noted for stopping games to instruct players to help them understand better the rules of the sport.  When he coached, he realized that the self-esteem of the children he was instructing was far more important than winning.  Jim Geanoulis was taken from us far too early in life, but his mark was left indelibly on the lives he touched in his career in Peabody.

    Congratulations to all the recipients of the George Peabody Legacy Award for this well-deserved recognition of their achievements and contributions to the City of Peabody, its schools, and its students.

  10. Congratulations to our top spellers of 2013!

    February 28, 2013 by KJG

    After an exciting two hours of spelling on Wednesday night, Higgins Middle School sixth-grader Gabe Goldman established himself as the winner of the 3rd Annual Higgins Middle School Spelling Bee. The Bee, which is sponsored by the Peabody Education Foundation and hosted by the Northshore Mall, featured thirty students from grades 6, 7, and 8. Eight-grader Stephen May grabbed the second place spot, while seventh-grader Andeemae Sims took third. Last year’s Bee champion Ashley Royer took a respectable fourth place in this year’s Bee. PEF member and Higgins media specialist Sudi Smoller, who organizes the Bee and the practices leading up to the main event, notes that many of the spellers participating in the Bee have also taken the stage in previous years; some students participated in the first Spelling Bee as sixth-graders and have made it to the final event for three years. Additional information about last night’s Bee, as well as pictures and videos from the event, can be found on the Peabody Patch.

    The Peabody Education Foundation would like to thank the Northshore Mall for continuing to host and support the Spelling Bee, as well as the members of the PEF who assisted with planning, setting up, judging, and organizing the event. Congratulations to the winners, and to all of the spellers who competed last night!