It has been a wonderful summer and I am sure everyone has enjoyed this time with family and friends. This summer my wife and I celebrated our fifteenth anniversary. We also had a great week at Cape Cod with our daughters. My youngest daughter will be in second grade and older daughter in sixth grade at the middle school this fall. In addition, this fall will be my 20th year of having the joy of working in the field of education. I remember very clearly being 22 and excited to start my first year of teaching like it was yesterday. That 22 year old and I still share the same excitement and joy at the opportunity to help children develop a life-long love of learning. I have grown over the years to have an even higher degree of respect for the role parents play. I have to thank our Pine Glen community for the incredible privilege you provide us with to educate your children and see them grow.
We will commence the 2015-2016 school year at Pine Glen Elementary School on August 31st for students in grades 1-5. Kindergarten students first day is September 8th. Students can be dropped off starting at 8:20 am. Instruction starts at 8:35 am. Students who arrive at 8:35 or later will be recorded as tardy. Students will dismissed at 2:40 pm. Kindergarten hours are 8:35am-1:00 pm.
I must commend our custodial staff for their stellar work in making the school a clean and safe environment for students to learn. Also, teachers have spent many hours this summer preparing their classrooms to be clean, warm, safe, and inviting places to learn.
We were fortunate this summer to have begun the process of installing a new intercom system. In addition, we have installed a Wave System to even further improve the speed that first responders know to arrive at the school in the event of an emergency. We have also added new tables and chairs to the cafeteria. These changes will help make our school an even safer safe place to learn. I would like to thank everyone in Burlington for their support in making safety the number one priority at Pine Glen Elementary School.
We continue to utilize a best practice and highly researched Multi-Tiered System of Supports (MTSS) often referred to as Response to Intervention (RtI) with staffing. A MTSS/RtI approach has allowed us the capacity to best draw upon our staff to address individual student needs. Please continue to be mindful of the fact that in utilizing this approach a student’s classroom teacher might be different than their reading or math teacher. This affords teachers the opportunity to work with a narrower teachable range, provide interventions, and maximize efficiency. This is not leveled instruction. We are providing flexibly grouped reading instruction that changes based on data. We continue to use an online universal screening to become aware of where to focus our instruction and provide interventions for students.
We are pleased to welcome new staff members to our Pine Glen Community. I am incredibly thankful to the all the residents of Burlington for continuing to provide us with the financial means to attract and retain the highest caliber of teachers. We enthusiastically welcome many staff to new roles and positions at the school too. Although not new to Pine Glen, Karen Hoyt, who was a kindergarten instructional assistant, is now a kindergarten teacher. Elizabeth Bennett will be joining us as a new kindergarten instructional assistant with Mrs. Hoyt. Likewise, Elizabeth Merlino, who was a Response to Intervention Tutor (RtI Tutor) for Pine Glen, will now be a fourth grade teacher. In addition, Jackie D’Amato, Janelle Fumia, Jessica Maria, and
Courtney Mulcahy are also joining our staff as special needs instructional assistants. Andrea Pietragallo is also joining our staff as a RtI Tutor. Molly Ryan is our new speech and language instruction assistant. In addition, Sandy Lord will be our new English Language Learner (ELL) teacher. Samantha Justice will be joining us as our permanent substitute teacher. Michele DeMartinis is coming on board as a new music teacher. Carla Beaulieu is moving from fifth grade to second grade and Sarah Hayes is moving from fourth grade to third grade. Complementing our new hires is Christine Sheppard, our new fifth grade teacher. Also, Ms. Smith had her wedding this summer and will now be Mrs. Bourgeois.
I am incredibly grateful to the Burlington community for the investment they make in students. Resources such as Response to Intervention tutors, a school psychologist, class size, reading specialist, librarian, technology intervention specialist, and interventions, as well as technology on which to run them, have provided us with the means to see our students make great growth.
I wish to thank the PTO for all their assistance. They have done tremendous work in providing student enrichment, organizing school social events, community outreach, and assistance to the teachers. The Halloween Dance and the Winter Carnival, and Turkey Trot/Walk-a-Thon are just a few examples of some of the great the PTO sponsors. The PTO continues to serve as the best vehicle in which to volunteer and be active in our school community.
Thank you very much for the opportunity you entrust us with everyday in providing instruction to your children! It is an absolute joy to see students grow and mature throughout the years at Pine Glen. It is because of this support and partnership we can continue to create a lifelong love of learning for everyone in our Pine Glen Community.
If you have any questions or have great stories to share of your children’s learning journey, please do not hesitate to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.