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Superintendent's Message
Massena Central School Board of Education Update
October 28, 2016

Massena Raider Teams are Crowned Section X Champions
Congratulations to three of our teams who earned Section X titles this week: Boys Varsity Soccer, Girls Varsity Soccer, and Varsity Football. Coached by Pat Henrie, the Boys Varsity Soccer teams survived a close 1-0 thriller against Malone on Wednesday night at the Potsdam Central School field.  It was Coach Henrie's 300th win!!  The team will travel to Colonie on Wednesday, November 2nd to play the Section 2 champion in a state playoff game.  The Girls Varsity Soccer team followed in the nightcap with an exciting overtime win over Malone that went to a shootout.  Sophomore Cloe Violi sealed the deal for the Raiders who will go on to play on the winner of Section 2 or 3 Saturday November 5th in Ogdensburg. The Varsity Football team beat Tupper Lake on Friday night to be named Section X Co-Champs with Gouverneur.  Congratulations to Coach Diagostino and crew for the team’s first sectional championship since 1994. 
The football game cancelled by Gouverneur to the death of one of their students, Brennan Stevens, will not be rescheduled. 
Here is a Courier Observer article about the soccer championships.
Here is a Courier Observer article about the football championship.
Communication Specialist Rebekah Grim Wins Prestigious Award
St. Lawrence-Lewis BOCES Communication Specialist Rebekah Grim was recently identified as an emerging leader by NNY Business Magazine. This “20 Under 40” Award recognizes people under age 40 who are having an impact on their profession and community. Rebekah works with the Massena Central School District on our public relations through such venues as the website, social media, school calendar, budget newsletter and many more. Congratulations to Rebekah on this impressive recognition.
Here is a link to the article about Rebekah’s award.
NYS School Boards Association Update
The following is an update from the NYS School Boards Association on the state’s response to the federal Every Student Succeeds Act.  Regional meetings are being held to gather input from the field. Director of Curriculum Stephanie Allen attended one of these meetings at The St. Lawrence-Lewis BOCES building in Canton on Wednesday.

Regents Delay ESSA Plan

New York will take more time to develop a plan for cultivating a system of highly effective schools, a key requirement of the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) passed by Congress last year and an influential blueprint for crafting state education policy.

Citing looming political changes at the national level and a need to continue gathering broad community input, Education Commissioner MaryEllen Elia recommended moving the target date for submitting the ESSA plan from March to July 2017.

Elia alluded to continuing fallout from the state's rapid adoption of the Common Core learning standards – which triggered changes in state test content and a storm of controversy about tests and efforts to implement a statewide educator evaluation system – as a reason for the delay.

"Let me say that I am extremely sensitive to New York's situation," she told the Regents at their October meeting. "The major concern that people have had in New York is that things were done far too quickly."

Elia also pointed to impending shifts in the nation's political leadership with presidential and congressional elections next month.

"As we have progressed through this political season, I think it has become more evident that there will be shifts and/or changes, possibly – and we certainly don't anticipate that all of the regulations related to ESSA will be out before there is a shift in the presidency," she said.

The new administration taking office in January 2017 could prompt adjustments in schedules, regulations and expectations, Elia noted.

The extended timeline for work on the state plan was among developments at this month's Regents meeting.

In other action:
1. Elia introduced 36 so-called "high level concepts" based on input gathered so far from regional meetings and groups participating in the department's ESSA Think Tank. A link to the draft list of concepts is available on the SED website at: http://www.p12.nysed.gov/accountability/essa.html.

The concepts focus on priorities that include providing universal access to high-level coursework, developing a state-designed plan to improve test participation rates in order to provide a more accurate picture of students' academic proficiency, and taking steps to support the development of effective teachers.

2. Members of the Regents Workgroup on Improving Outcomes for Young Men and Boys of Color received an update on applications for four grant programs established under the state's My Brother's Keeper (MBK) initiative.

Stanley Hansen, executive director of the Office of Post-Secondary Access, Support and Success, said:
  • 22 applications have been received from colleges with teacher education programs for a share of $3 million in Teacher Opportunity Corps funding, which would support mentoring and recruitment of future teachers from current high school students. He said it is anticipated that about 17 proposals will be funded.
  • 58 applications have been submitted by school districts seeking funding for family and community engagement under a $6 million program. Hansen estimated that about 40 programs would be funded.
  • More applications are being encouraged from school districts eligible to receive shares of $7 million in MBK "challenge grant" funding. The grants are not competitive, but school districts do need to submit plans and receive approval. About 40 eligible districts have applied, so far.
  • A $2 million Exemplary School Models and Practices grant program has been developed and now is under review. An estimated 10 school district recipients would receive about $200,000 each under that program.
3. The Regents approved a public comment period for a proposal opening opportunities for seventh- and eighth-grade students who are exceptional athletes to participate in interscholastic sports at the high school level.

State education officials say the new regulations would provide clearer guidance on when students may play at the high school level and identify specific circumstances that could allow a fifth year of participation in high school athletic competition. The regulations also define permissible paths to high school-level competition by students who attend any of the 13 public school districts in New York that serve students only up to eighth grade.

4. The Regents learned that 516 school districts have received approval for new Annual Professional Performance Review (APPR) plans. Staff members said that makes about 75 percent of school districts with approved plans. The deadline for approval is December 31.

5. The Regents expanded a "safety net" that gives teacher certification programs more time to prepare their students to take the state's revised content specialty tests (CSTs), which are among several requirements for the state's overhauled teacher certification program.

The regulatory changes provide additional opportunities to take the old tests for candidates who do not take or pass new versions of the exams to qualify for certification. Any extensions provided would vary depending on the category of exam. The categories are: 14 new single-subject CSTs to be released in November; 19 previously-revised single-subject CSTs; and multi-subject CSTs; multi-subject CSTs for grades 7-12.

Listen to NYSSBA's Study Break Podcast

  The dog ate my homework: The dog
  may actually be helping students. Less
  may be more when it comes to assigning
  Listen now.

Albany Update

The information below is from Hinman Straub, counsel for the NYS Board of Regents.

Governor Announces Agreement with Public Employees Federation
On Wednesday, Gov. Cuomo announced that the state has reached a three-year labor agreement with the New York State Public Employees Federation (PEF).  PEF is the state’s second-largest employee union, representing 54,000 workers.
The three-year contract agreement includes 2 percent increases in 2016-17, 2017-18 and 2018-19, and the union has agreed to work with the state on a plan to reduce “out-of-control healthcare costs. The contract must be approved by PEF’s Executive Board and ratified by its membership.
Governor Announces 300 New Electric Vehicle Charging Stations
On Monday, Gov. Cuomo announced that the New York Power Authority (NYPA) has entered into a contract for the installation of 300 electric vehicle charging stations at public locations throughout the state. The five-year contract includes charging station equipment as well as optional installation and networking services, which will enable NYPA to make charging station infrastructure and services available to governmental customers at lower costs and favorable financing terms as part of its standard portfolio of energy efficiency services to these customers.
Gov. Cuomo said:
“New York is a national leader in promoting green technology and developing the clean energy economy, and these new charging stations will support the growing increase in electric vehicle use across the state.  With our unyielding commitment to cleaner, greener, and more efficient energy solutions, we are building a stronger New York for all.”
DFS Issues Report Critical of State Retirement Fund
On Monday, the state Department of Financial Services (DFS) criticized State Comptroller Tom DiNapoli’s management of the state pension fund in a report that accuses the fund of paying high fees and investing pension system funds in high-cost underperforming hedge funds and nontransparent private equity funds.  According to the report, high fees and hedge-fund underperformance cost the fund $3.8 billion over the past eight years. 
The state comptroller is the sole trustee of the $179 billion pension fund for more than 1 million public workers and retirees.
DFS Superintendent Maria Vullo said:
“Pension fund managers across the country have cut or eliminated exposure to these overpriced and underperforming investments, while the office of the New York state comptroller has stood still and spent pension system funds chasing performance that continues to fall far short.”
A spokesperson for Comptroller DiNapoli's office criticized report, calling it “uninformed and unprofessional.”  She said:
"Unfortunately, the Department of Financial Services seems more interested in playing political games, so remains unaware of actions taken by what is one of the best managed and best funded public pension funds in the country.”
Governor Announces Launch of Statewide Campaign to Raise Awareness of Addiction
On Tuesday, Gov. Cuomo announced the launch of a #CombatAddiction campaign emphasizes the far-reaching effects of addiction and connects New Yorkers with information and support services through social media, bilingual public service announcements and a print ad that will be posted on the New York City Subway system and on the Staten Island Ferry.
Gov. Cuomo said:
“This campaign seeks to educate New Yorkers of the full impact of addiction and how get help for themselves or their loved ones.  Addiction knows no bounds, and its devastating effects can be felt in every community across the state, but we must stand together to combat this disease and to build a stronger, healthier New York for all.”
Board of Regents Considers 2017 Priorities
At its monthly meeting this week, New York State’s education policymakers began looking ahead to 2017, discussing their budgetary and legislative priorities for the upcoming legislative session.
On the budgetary side, the State Education Department (SED) asked the Board of Regents to push for additional resources for the department to cover the costs of administration, support and technical assistance; funding to train educators in the state’s revised standards; and more funding for opportunity and access programs like the Higher Education Opportunity Program, which provides academically and economically disadvantaged students access to a college education and mentorship.  (Read SED’s memo on its 2017 state budget initiatives here.)
On the legislative front, SED is looking to align its seven pre-kindergarten programs; update SED’s authority relating to intervening in struggling school districts; and approving the DREAM Act, which would allow thousands of undocumented students to receive state grants and other financial aid to attend college. (Read SED’s memo on its 2017 state legislative initiatives here.)
Preview of New York State’s 2016 Legislative Elections
As it has been in every state legislative election since 2008, control of the State Senate is New York’s big political prize in 2016.  Although elected Democrats have a 32-31 advantage in the chamber, the Republican Party has maintained a working majority in the Senate – its last hold on power in New York State – through agreements with six breakaway Democrats.
In a presidential election year where high voter turnout is expected, Republicans in New York State go into the elections at a disadvantage based on simple math: New York has twice as many enrolled Democrats as Republicans.  There are 5.3 million Democrats and 2.6 million Republicans, though 2.5 million voters are not registered in a party.
There are a number of competitive State Senate races, most in the state’s suburban communities, that could determine whether Republicans can retain their Senate majority in Albany.  Below are some of the most watched races among the November 8th State Senate races:
5th Senate District (parts of Nassau and Suffolk counties):  Incumbent Republican Carl Marcellino has served in the Senate since 1995.  A former teacher, he serves as chair of the Senate Education Committee.  He is being challenged by James Gaughran, former Huntington town board member and Suffolk legislator.  Democrats hold a 76,000 to 72,000 enrollment edge over Republicans, with 71,000 unaligned voters in the district.
7th S.D. (part of Nassau County):  Incumbent Republican Jack Martins is running for a Congressional seat in November.  Adam Haber, the Democratic candidate who lost to Martins in 2014, is running for the seat again.  He faces Republican Elaine Phillips, who serves as Mayor of the Village of Flower Hill.   Democrats hold an enrollment advantage of 86,700 to 65,500 over the Republicans, with 55,300 voters not enrolled in any party.
39th S.D. (parts of Orange, Rockland and Ulster counties):  Incumbent Republican Bill Larkin is being challenged by Orange County legislator Chris Eachus.  Democrats hold an enrollment advantage of 62,800 to 50,100 over the GOP, with 36,700 voters who are not in either party.
41st S.D. (parts of Putnam and Dutchess counties): First-term incumbent Republican Sue Serino is being challenged by former one-term Senator Terry Gipson.  Serino narrowly defeated Gipson in 2014 by about 3,700 votes.  The Democrats hold an enrollment advantage of about 10,000 voters in the district.
60th S.D. (part of Erie County) With first-term incumbent Democrat Marc Panepinto not running for re-election, Republican Erie County Comptroller Chris Jacobs faces off against Democrat Amber Small. The Democrats hold an enrollment advantage of 84,000 to 49,400 over the GOP, with 19,700 unenrolled voters.
Coming Up
On October 24, the Committee on Open Government (COOG) will meet.  Agenda items to be discussed include exemption regarding police and correction officers’ personnel records; proposal regarding government-created not-for-profit entities; and proposal regarding voluminous requests; and consideration of content of annual report.
The Joint Commission on Public Ethics (JCOPE) meets on October 26.
Election Day is Tuesday, November 8.
The Board of Regents holds its next meeting on November 14 and 15.
The Public Service Commission (PSC) holds its next meeting on November 17.
The state Board of Elections holds its next meeting on November 17.
High School
News & Notes

Soul Street


Each year performers are brought to the high school through the BOCES Fine Arts CoSer. This year Soul Street performed for our students on October 28, 2016. This performance was educational, entertaining and simply awesome. Soul Street is a group of four males who came from rough neighborhoods in Houston, Texas and defied the odds by turning their love for music and dancing into a career. One of the performers has had parts in several recent movies about street dancing competitions. These gentlemen have traveled the world educating students and staff on the history of RAP, (did you know it stands for Rhythm and Poetry),HipHop and disco. Each number they performed included moves from dance, martial arts and gymnastics, as you can see in the pictures (a small sample from my camera that doesn’t do them justice). They also engaged the audience in an interactive number and then invited students on stage to strut their stuff. In my conversation with Soul Street after the performance they commented on how engaged and talented our students are, which made their time here even more enjoyable. Both students and staff commented on how great the performance was. They can come back any time.

Art Club

Art teacher Trish Murphy returned to the high school this September and immediately reinstated the Art Club. The response has been overwhelming. Forty-seven students signed up to be in Art Club. The first project Trish selected was pumpkin painting. This was a fun project to get the students engaged and provide them with a different medium to work on. The pumpkins were provided by a local farmer for an extremely reduced price. Shannon Donnelly poses with her pumpkin, looks like something out of a Tim Burton movie. Great job Shannon. That particular pumpkin is now on display in the Main Office. The others, like the cat on the right, are on top of the display cases across from the cafeteria. Stop in and see them. The students did a great job on them.

IB Training

Every 5 years IB International holds a review of IB Programs in school districts. This year marks 5 years since the last review of our IB Program. Therefore, preparations are under way for this year’s review. According to our Action Plan from the last review, professional development and collaboration are areas of focus. Mr. Brady and the BOE have provided additional funds for teachers and administrators to attend outside professional development which is require. At the high school, every Friday 12th period is reserved for faculty, department and building management meeting. This year we added IB collaboration on the 4th Friday of the month. Above Jan Normile, IB Coordinator presents new curriculum information as well as guidelines for student research papers. This year’s focus for students is “works cited”. The IB teachers have selected MLA as the format for all students to use when citing their research to ensure consistency. Mike Violi was on hand to provide TURNITIN training to IB teachers who don’t already use this program. ELA and Modern Language teachers have been using it for years, not only as a way to detect plagiarism in a student’s paper, but as a way for students to submit a rough draft to find out what percentage of authenticity the paper has before they complete it. It’s pretty amazing that technology provides our students with this feedback.

Raider Make a Difference Day

Pictured above is Gesele Todd raking leaves for an elderly community member. Each year student athletes help community members with outside work that they are unable to do themselves. This is an activity that is well received in the community and very much appreciated by those who do the work and those who receive it. Way to go athletes!!!

Learn to Lead

This year’s Learn to Lead trip to Raquette Lake was another success. This event brings students together in trust and team building activities. The benefits of this program are immeasurable to those who attend which leaves them with strong bonds and excited for the second trip in May. Erin Covell and Bob Jordan do a great job organizing this event. Thanks to the BOE and Mr. Brady for their continued support.


Ty Sells 

The St. Lawrence County Drug Free Coalition provided funding for Ty Sells to present on October 19, 2016. Mr. Sells kept the attention of the whole student body with his humor and antics. But beyond the entertainment value, his thought provoking message resonated with the students and staff. He spoke of how many times, we as social beings are trained to believe we cannot have fun or be social unless we use alcohol or drugs and how we need to resist those ideas. He concluded his presentation with a challenge to students to be true to themselves and not let outside pressure dictate their behaviors.


Mr. Lincoln caved to the pleas of our music students and Rocktober was brought back on October 28 after a 4 year hiatus. Because organizing this event is an enormous undertaking, he agreed to a smaller show than June Rocks.  Olivia Geoge, who is performing above with Mr. Lincoln accompanying, came up with the idea of a coffee house setting rather than having a full band for each song. Sixteen students performed with Mr. Lincoln accompanying on aucostic guitar or keyboards. Rocktober was held at the New Testament Church, which provided a smaller venue than the High School auditorium to create a coffehouse atmosphere. The students were well prepared and did an outstanding job performing. Thank you Mr. Lincoln.


Fall Athletics are winding down and what a great season! Below are the results as of this writing 
Boys Soccer - Section X Champions.  We will play a Regional game in Colonie on Wednesday Nov 2 vs TBD
Girls Soccer   Section X CoChampions with Malone.   We will play a Regional game in Ogdensburg on Saturday Nov 5 vs TBD
Volleyball – Semi-final game Tuesday Nov 1 in Massena vs Potsdam for overall Section X championship @ 6:30 pm in Massena. The girls are undefeated for the second year in a row.
Swimming – 10 wins and I loss as of Oct 27.
Football - CoChampions with Gouverneur.
First Section X championship if football since 1994.
Evacuation Drill
On October 21, 2016, the high school participated in an evacuation drill. Duane Richards, Rick Norris, Jane Bain, the Rescue Squad and the Massena Police were all on board to observe and offer constructive criticism. Students and staff were out of the building with in a minute and forty seconds. They then moved to the muster station and on into the holding area (the gym) in an orderly and timely manner. The whole drill took approximately 20 minutes. Based on previous evacuation drills, we allotted an hour for this to be completed. Comments from those who participated in the last drill, were, “We were still looking for missing students at the 20 minute mark in the last drill.” Technology, along with the exemplar organization skills and training by Shane Halladay, are reasons for the decrease in completion time. Shane trained wing leaders on the use of a shared Google Doc to take attendance. This allowed the first attendance to be completed in 2 minutes. This first attendance accounts for every student so we are assured there is no one left in the building. Shane has also been responsible for each of the fire drills this year, noting completion times and how procedures were being followed. He provided retraining on the procedures that were weak. During the debriefing portion, it was noted that the students were well behaved, orderly and listening to teachers as they provided direction. Areas of weakness and suggestions were noted. They will be worked on over the rest of this school year.
Financial Aid Night
This year Guidance Counselors Danielle Brown and Nicole LaPage were on hand October 26 to present Financial Aid information to parents of seniors planning on attending college after graduation. Approximately 35 parents were present to take advantage of this service.  This is an increase over previous year
Jefferson Elementary School
News & Notes

National Wildlife Federation's Eco-Schools Partnership

Elizabeth Soper, Director for National Wildlife Federation’s K-12 programming, recently contacted the three elementary schools in Massena with information regarding a grant that they recently received from the ALCOA Foundation This grant was targeted to run a program in the United States in three different locations and to work closely with their partner organization, the Foundation for Environmental Education in Denmark to run the same program in four other countries. 

The ALCOA Waste-Water-Watts or ALCOA W3 project is based on NWF’s Eco-Schools USA program (www.eco-schoolsusa.org) which is a national and international sustainability program for K-12 schools.  Here in America we have close to 5,000 schools that have registered and are part of this program. 

ALCOA had asked their organization to recruit three schools in Massena, NY since they have facilities in this area.  Part of this program is engaging ALCOA volunteers to support the schools in their sustainability work.  The goal of the program is for the school to engage students and staff in one or more of the three sustainability areas of waste, water or Watts (energy) and to use the Eco-Schools USA seven step framework to guide this process.  Each participating school will receive a $500 action grant that can be used to take actions at your school for one or more of these areas of sustainability.   

Madison, Jefferson, and Nightengale schools certainly look forward to being part of this hands-on partnership. Mrs. Paige Arcet, Jefferson Grade Six Teacher, will represent Jefferson in this partnership. Mrs. Arcet will be working with 6th graders to take a look at our electricity usage and ways to help reduce our carbon footprint on the world. We also want to take a look at our waste and find ways to improve on the process and possibly look into creating a compost pile. See information below:

Jefferson Student Council Officer Elections

The student council is under new guidance this year and decided to have students running for 6th grade office positions (President and Treasurer) to give speeches to the 6th grade as to why they are qualified for that position and what they plan to achieve. There are 17 student council members and the officers elected to represent the student council are:

President – Alyssa
Vice President – Luc Eddy
Treasurer – Payton Benson
Secretary – Alivia Morris
Seen below is Sixth grade student, Zachary Bressard, presenting his campaign platform to his fellow grade-level colleagues.
Student Council School Store

The Jefferson Student Council is aiming to have the school store up and running after break at the latest. There will be plenty of items to purchase. When the store opens it will be in the front lobby on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Friday from 8:00-8:30.

Safety Patrol

Student Council has decided to implement a safety patrol to assist teachers and students during their bus rooms and bus lines. Their goal is to ensure that everyone gets safely to their assigned bus at dismissal time. Some of the students on safety patrol will be strategically positioned in the hallways and in the front lobby to help monitor the students being dismissed to their buses.
Red Ribbon Week Public Service Announcement

Prior to Red Ribbon Week each year, the 6th grade students write public service announcements about being drug free and living healthy lifestyles. This year, the PSA's were played on WMSA, 101.5 The Fox, and Mix 96.1. The 2016 theme was YOLO, You Only Live Once, Be Drug Free. One student from each homeroom was chosen to go to  WMSA and record their PSA. This year's winners were Alisha Pruett, Alayna Abelard, and Veronika Garrond!

Sixth Grade Halloween Dance

The Friends of Jefferson parent group held a Halloween dance for students in grades 5 and 6 on Friday, October 21. Along with dancing and socializing, the students participated in a costume contest that presented awards for various categories.

Congratulations to our Fantastic Coaches [Soccer Ball 2] 
Coach Pat Henrie

Mr. Patrick Henrie, Jefferson’s Physical Education Teacher, is also the Massena Central School’s varsity boys soccer coach. With the team’s most recent win that moved them on in the playoffs, Mr. Henrie reached the milestone of 300 wins!!! Congratulations Mr. Henrie. We are so proud of you and your teams. We know how much hard work and dedication has gone into this!

Coach Ryan Hayes

Mr. Ryan Hayes, Jefferson’s fifth grade teacher, is also the Massena Central School’s varsity girls soccer coach. His team also recently won a playoff game that has earned them a chance to move on in the state playoffs. At a ceremony held at this playoff game, Mr. Hayes was honored with a “Coach of the Year” award. Congratulations Mr. Hayes. We are very proud of you.
Good luck to Mr. Henrie, Mr. Hayes, and their players as they move on to their next playoff game.

Halloween Parade

Monday, October 31

The annual Halloween “parade of costumes” is always a busy and exciting time at Jefferson. Our goal is to make this event as fun and safe as possible for everyone involved. It looks like the weather will cooperate this year by allowing for a dry but chilly outside parade. The parade route has been altered a bit from the past. The students will begin by marching out of the grade 3-4 hallway exit and proceed along the nearside of the walking trail. Due to the chilly weather, classes will not circle the entire walking-trail, but instead reenter the school through the grade 5-6 wing doors. There will be plenty of picture taking opportunities for parents along this parade route.

For student safety, parents and other guests are directed not to wear costumes, especially ones that cover faces, to this event.

Jefferson faculty and staff will be parking on the side lawn to free up as much space as possible for parents and guests in the parking lot. Please be cautioned that vehicles parked in the front circle after 3:10 will be blocked by busses arriving for dismissal. Also beware of the “No Parking” signs that prohibit parking on the opposite side of the road directly in front of the school. Parking in this area blocks traffic and violators have have been ticketed in the past. I hope that you are able to join us for this special event to capture some memorable photos for your scrapbooks.  
Marching Outside:
2:05 - Grades 5 and 6 will gather starting just outside of the exit of the ¾ hallway. Grade 5 will line up on the inside and grade 6 on the outside facing them forming a pathway for the paraders to pass.
2:10 - Grades 3/4 , Mrs. Goodrow, and Ms. Stoffel’s class will move into the hallway
outside of their classrooms to form a pathway for the parade so that they can view PK-2 as they pass.
2:10 - Mrs. Hubert’s and Mrs. Bellinger’s class will proceed down the hallway to the cafeteria entrance and wait for direction to begin the parade.
Classrooms will join the parade in the following order behind Mrs. Hubert’s class:
             98      Mrs. Bellinger
            101      Mrs. Dix
            102      Mrs. Pierce
            103      Miss Blanchard
            106      Mrs. Henrie
             99      Mrs. Downs
            104      Mrs. Johnston
            107      Mrs. Laramay
            100      Mrs. Bradley
            110      Mrs. Cook
            112      Mrs. Bulger
As one classroom passes, the next joins in immediately behind.
The parade will proceed out of the grade 3-4 wing exit, walk around the near side (only) of the walking trail, and then proceed back into the school through the grade 5-6 doorway. Grades 3,4, Ms. Stoffel’s  and Mrs. Goodrow’s students will join the parade behind the  PK -2 students.  Starting with Mrs. Goodrow’s class, then 3rd grade, 4th grade, and then Ms. Stoffel’s class.  Grade 5/6 students that are dressed in costumes will join the parade after Ms. Stoffel’s class passes. The rest of grades 5/6 will return to their classrooms once the early primary students have passed. Parents that want to dismiss their children with them following the parade may sign them out with the classroom teacher.

Jefferson Calendar Events:
Mon., Oct. 31              Halloween Parade of Costumes                      Begins at 2:10 pm
Tues., Nov. 1              Friends of Jefferson Parent Group Meeting   6:00 pm
Thur.-Fri., Nov. 3-4       Lions Club Vision Screening for Pre K-Kindergarten students
Thur., Nov. 10             Grades 3-6 attend Command Performance The Legend Of Sleepy Hollow
Fri., Nov. 11                Veterans Day  No School 
Madison Elementary School
News & Notes

The students in Mrs. Jennifer Earl’s fourth grade class earned a sweet reward as they've been working hard to identify the major cities, lakes, rivers, and mountains on a New York State map.  Students were given a sugar cookie in the shape of New York State and various candies that they were to place on the cookie to represent the major cities, lakes, rivers and mountains in New York State.

Meet the Principal/Pumpkin Night 2016!

The Madison Who Club, along with IB students Robert Bednarczk, Paige Perry, Erin McCarthy, Erin O'Connell, and Meagan Morgan hosted a Meet the Principal and Pumpkin Decorating night.  The families who attended decorated a pumpkin, ate delicious cookies donated by Jason Hoxie at Subway and played various games to win prizes.  Mrs. Chapman had the opportunity to introduce herself to many Madison families and join in the activities, too. It sure was a fantastic evening for all!


Pumpkin Writing

Ms. Ouimet’s ELA class started writing a new piece entitled “How to Carve a Pumpkin”. Students were required to fill out their 4 square planning sheet by explaining each step of the carving process as it was being completed.  When the activity was finished, they were able to take their pumpkins home.  The student in the picture decided on a non-traditional design by carving a star wars rebel alliance symbol on his pumpkin!

Unity Day

Every year, the elementary counselors go into each classroom and talk about what it means to be a good friend and talk about respect (the golden rule: treating others the way you want to be treated). The counselors define bullying and how it affects people. Last year we started a program that empowers the "Bystanders". Students were taught ways to Stand Up and Speak Out...how to become "Upstanders". For the last two years our students at Massena Elementary Schools took pledges against bullying. On paper hands they wrote their names and stated what they will do to make a difference in bullying (i.e. stand up for someone, not get involved with others laughing, take the student out of the situation). We also created chain links of positive words to our classmates. After all, kind words to each other can create a positive “chain reaction”. This was hung in the cafeteria around a unity banner.  The past several years when we talked with our students about bullying we showed them the video "The Bully Effect" found on www.cartoonnetwork/standupspeakout.com.

The counselors and teachers put a message out to our students that EVERYONE IS SOMEONE. We talk to them about how we all have something to offer to this world, how everyone has a right to an education and how everyone has a right to feel safe and a sense of belonging when they come to school. Students discuss how the bystanders are the most powerful people in school, "power in numbers" and how when we UNITE AS ONE we can stand together against bullying and make a difference. The students get excited and feel empowered. This makes me happy and excited! We can make a difference, even if it is small. Our Middle School and High School have programs like WEB (where everyone belongs) and Link Crew which help our student’s transition and gain a sense of belonging at school.

Unity day is a great way to celebrate how we work together to make a difference. By wearing the same color (orange) we show that we support the idea that we can all unite as one and take a stand against bullying behavior. With the support of Massena Central School Superintendent and administrators, the entire Massena Central School, along with Trinity Catholic School, took a stand, United as One Body and supported National Bully Awareness day by wearing the color orange! Making a difference starts with one person having the courage to Stand Up and Speak Out against bullying behaviors (physical and emotional). When One person stands up against it others will follow. POWER IN NUMBERS!

October is National Bully Prevention Month; Unity day was October 21, 2016.  Thank you all who participated in supporting Bully Awareness Day. When we stand together, we can make a difference!

The Madison Who Club

The Madison Who Club has recently purchased a Buddy Bench for our playground. We hope that the addition of this bench will help continue to build community, foster inclusion, and teach our children important lessons in empathy and compassion.  They also recently purchased a beautiful new rug for the music room, where Mrs. Burnett can gather her flock of little Owls to experience the joy of music.


Thank You Massena Fire Department!

Mrs. Chapman would like to thank the Massena Fire Department for the invitation to their annual fire prevention dinner.  It was a special night to thank various brave men and women who have served our community and work hard to keep us all safe! Hats off to you all!!

Upcoming Events:
  1. 10/31         Halloween Parade 1:30pm
  2. 11/6           Daylight Savings Time, Clocks back 1 hour
  3. 11/11         Veterans Day, No School
  4. 11/21         K-2, Outstanding Owls
  5. 11/22         3-6, Outstanding Owls
  6. 11/23-27    Thanksgiving Break, No School
  7. 11/29         All Elementary Band/Orchestra Concert 7pm 

Nightengale Elementary
News & Notes

UNITY DAY: Together against bullying — united for kindness, acceptance and inclusion. Wednesday, October 19, 2016
Make it ORANGE and make it end! What are your true colors when it comes to bullying? If you care about safe and supportive schools and communities make your color ORANGE on Unity Day. That’s the day everyone can come together – in schools, communities, and online – and send one large ORANGE message of support, hope, and unity to show that we are together against bullying and united for kindness, acceptance and inclusion.
Individuals across the nation, and even world-wide, can participate in Unity Day.

Wear Orange: Make a statement!

ORANGE provides a powerful, visually compelling expression of solidarity,” said Paula Goldberg, Executive Director of PACER Center. “When hundreds of individuals in a school or organization wear orange, the vibrant statement becomes a conversation starter, sending the unified message to kids to know that they are not alone.”


Red Ribbon Week

The Story Behind the Symbol
Enrique "Kiki" Camarena grew up in a dirt-floored house with hopes and dreams of making a difference.  

Camarena worked his way through college, served in the Marines and became a police officer. When he decided to join the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration, his mother tried to talk him out it.  "I can't not do this," he told her. "I'm only one person, but I want to make a difference."  

The DEA sent Camarena to work undercover in Mexico investigating a major drug cartel believed to include officers in the Mexican army, police and government. On Feb. 7, 1985, the 37-year-old Camarena left his office to meet his wife for lunch.  Five men appeared at the agent's side and shoved him in a car. One month later, Camarena's body was found in a shallow grave. He had been tortured to death.

In honor of Camarena's memory and his battle against illegal drugs, friends and neighbors began to wear red badges of satin. Parents, sick of the destruction of alcohol and other drugs, had begun forming coalitions. Some of these new coalitions took Camarena as their model and embraced his belief that one person can make a difference. These coalitions also adopted the symbol of Camarena's memory, the red ribbon.
The National Family Partnership organized the first Nationwide Red Ribbon Campaign in 1988. Since that time, the campaign has reached millions of U.S. children.

In 1997, the Texas Commission on Alcohol and Drug Abuse began committing resources to ensure the continuation of the Red Ribbon Campaign in Texas, as well as the hopes and beliefs behind this grassroots effort to protect children from the dangers of alcohol and other drugs.
Red Ribbon Week begins on Monday. Here is the schedule:
Monday-your child will be given a RRW sticker to wear at school
Tuesday-Wear tie dye or hippie gear (Peace out to drugs)
Wednesday-Wear red day
Thursday-sports jersey day (Team up against drugs)
Friday-wear shirt backwards (Turn your back on drugs)


A message from Mrs. Winston , School Counselor
It's never to soon to talk to your kids about drugs and alcohol. If possible, find a time this week to have an open discussion with your child about drugs. Ask what they already know about drugs (their answers will surprise you). Talk to them about legal and illegal drugs. Explain that some medicines are drugs and those are safe if prescribed by a doctor. Explain that alcohol and cigarettes are legal at certain ages. Then discuss your family values about drugs and what you expect of your child as far as drug and alcohol use. Here is a guide to help you. Click on your child's age.
Noble Nighthawks Friday October 21, 2016
These children were recognized for having good behavior, work ethic and friendship.

Noble Nighthawks 10/28/16

The Nightengale Neighbors PTO presents The 2016 Monster Dash-
We had approximately 90 participants in the 2016 Monster Dash! Thank you for everyone who braved the inclement weather and participated the 5k!
Nightengale would like to thank the following for helping make the Monster Dash such a success!!!


The Monster Dash would like to introduce the 2016 winner….Hunter Young, 6th grade student at Nightengale Elementary!!

Monster Dash Winners


Upcoming Nightengale Events-
  • Veteran’s Day November 11th-No School
  • November 18th Popcorn Day
  • November 15th PTO meeting in the library at 3:30 p.m. 

JW Leary Junior High
News & Notes


Massena Drug Free Coalition Brings Ty Sells to JW Leary.

On Thursday October 20th, the Massena Drug Free Coalition was able to bring Ty Sells to speak at JW Leary Junior High School.  Ty is recognized as an individual who cares deeply for the well-being of youth, he is known for his charisma and leadership. Not just a speaker, Ty brings over twenty two years of experience in drug prevention and community service, and youth development. Ty is an Ohio Certified Prevention Specialist II. He received his BA in Communication from The Ohio State University and is currently the Director of Training for Youth to Youth International in Columbus, Ohio. In 2012, Ty was awarded the “Prevention Innovator of the Year” Award by the Ohio Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services (formerly ODADAS) for his development of creative prevention trainings and consultation with schools and organizations across the state. While working closely with the youth, he has gained first- hand knowledge of the joys and challenges of being young today. Ty has developed a number of trainings, workshops, and presentations for both youth and adults to address the many complex issues that confront today’s young people.
His message for students at JW Leary was centered on the ideas of not judging others and being comfortable with yourself as a means to make healthy and productive life choices.  His use of humor made the talk memorable for our students and will hopefully help JW Leary to be an educational community where our students are proud to be themselves.  Thank you to the Massena Drug Free Coalition for their support with this event.
Parent Teacher Conferences are on November 16
Our Parent Teacher Conferences are coming soon.  On November 16th, we will have Parent Teacher Conferences from 12:30 to 3:30pm and again from 6:00-8:00pm.  Parents are invited to come to school and meet with their student(s) teachers to discuss progress through the first quarter of the school year.  Report cards will be distributed this evening and all teachers will be available to meet with you in our Gymnasium.  Please come and meet with us to discuss the school year thus far.  Parents who are unable to attend will receive their child’s report cards in the mail after our Parent Teacher Conference day.
Parent-Teacher Conference Checklist

Before the conference
  • Ask your child how she feels about school.
  • Ask your child if there is anything that he wants you to talk about with his teacher.
  • Tell your child that you and the teacher are meeting to help her.
  • Make a list of topics that you want to talk about with the teacher.
  • Prepare a list of questions such as:
    • 1. What are my child's strongest and weakest subjects?
    • 2. Does my child hand homework in on time?
    • 3. Does my child participate in class?
    • 4. Does my child seem happy at school?
    • 5. What can I do at home to help?

During the conference
  • Be on time (or early) for the meeting.
  • End the meeting on time. Other parents will probably have a conference after yours.
  • Relax and be yourself.
  • Ask the most important questions first.
  • If your child receives special services, make sure to meet with those teachers as well
  • Ask for explanations of anything you don't understand
  • Ask your child's teacher for ways that you can help your child at home.
  • Thank the teacher.

After the conference
  • Talk about the conference with your child.
  • Talk about the positive points, and be direct about problems.
  • Tell your child about any plans you and the teacher created.
  • Keep in touch with the teacher during the school year.

Congratulations to all of our Talented Leary Students!!!

Recently our students have auditioned for and been selected to various groups in our Vocal Music Program.  These students are to be commended and congratulated for their hard work.


Important Upcoming Dates @ JW Leary
11/6 Daylight Savings Time Ends
11/10 End of 1st Marking Period
11/15 JH Winter Concert, 7pm
11/16 JH Early Dismissal (Parent Teacher Conferences
11/17 BOE Meeting
11/23-25 Thanksgiving Recess

Last Updated: 11/14/16
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