A new year gets under way in Pocantico Hills
Following a busy summer of preparation, students arrive to a warm welcome
Buses rolled in on Tuesday morning, and students dressed in their back-to-school best hopped off, many sporting new backpacks or a fresh haircut, eager to take on the new school year.
For all the excitement of opening day, Pocantico Hills Central School hasn’t been exactly quiet these last few months. Besides the summer camp, July and August are a time for preparation, from physical facilities like the installation of rooftop solar panels, to teacher workshops and curriculum work. Teachers and staff have been busy in these hallways and classrooms, readying for excellence in 2023-24.
“We believe in our people, and they believe so much in what we’re doing,” Superintendent Rich Calkins said during conference day workshops leading up to the start of classes. “Our job as educators is to support and to empower them; the better they do, the greater the success of our students!”
The district’s message for parents is one of excitement about seeing students return to what is an amazing academic environment. Mr. Calkins lauded the “Herculean efforts over the summer” to prepare for opening day and credited the Board of Education for many health and safety updates made to school facilities since last school year. The PTA and Education Foundation have provided tremendous support to the district as well, he said.
Pocantico Hills teachers are excited to continue many of the curricular initiatives that have been pursued systematically over the last four years. Most recently the focus has been on reading.
“This year we are continuing to expand that,” the superintendent said. “We’re tackling the writing process in the same fashion, with everybody being trained in the same methodology. A huge shout out to our entire team for their work on this!”
In addition, the Leadership Team has worked hard to ensure returning students have all the resources and support they need. Community members are encouraged to share feedback on ways the district can continue to improve.
“Thank you to the community for the tremendous support that you provide,”Mr. Calkins said. “Together we can, and are, doing great things.”