MHS Y.E.S. Program Offers Experiences Outside Traditional Courses
So was that actually paranormal activity that took place last year in a few rooms at the Readfield Historical Society?
Keith Derosby, one of the advisors involved in Haunted New England, the most popular choice in the YES program lineup, can’t say for sure. But there’s no doubt, he said, that the electromagnetic meter detected a change.
“We had enough happen,” he said, “so that kids didn’t feel (the class) was a waste of time.”
Not surprisingly, then, students continue to have high spirits about Haunted New England in Year 2 of the YES program.
YES, which stands for Year End Studies, begins on June 14, offering a wide variety of opportunities for students to learn skills and participate in experiences outside the traditional high school course of studies.
Assistant principal Sam Dunbar said Outdoor Sculpture (last year called Building Outdoors) and Exploring the Natural History of Mount Desert Island, which involves several days of camping in Acadia National Park, are two other classes that drew strong interest from students.
Dunbar tried to meet student preferences as much as possible, but in some cases that proved impossible. About 300 students, for example, chose Haunted New England among the top-5 choices they identified for the YES signup, according to Dunbar. Given that the class is limited to 30 students, many students obviously were left disappointed.
Keith Derosby said part of the class’s allure is teenagers tend to enjoy anything a bit frightening. But he also gave credit to social studies teachers Alan Derosby – Keith’s brother – and Ryan Martin, the two whom he described as the originators of the class.
“They promote it well,” he said, “and it’s really outside the box.”
Last year Haunted New England investigated paranormal activity at the Readfield Historical Society. This time the haunt spot is the student theater building at the University of Maine at Farmington. Keith Derosby is making no predictions over whether this year’s investigation into the supernatural will prove to be successful. What he does know, however, is he eagerly awaits the hunt, and he said his brother is of like mind.
“For Alan and I, it is just something we love to do,” he said.