OSSINING — Classroom space constraints at Park School and an overall need for what Superintendent Dr. Phyllis Glassman describes as “an environment conducive to teaching and learning” encouraged the Ossining Board of Education to endorse a grade restructuring plan for the school district. The approved grade reorganization leaves the “Ossining Plan” – in which entire grades are housed in individual school buildings – intact.
Under the new plan, approved at the Board’s December 17 meeting and to be implemented by September 2009, Park School will house kindergarten, prekindergarten, and the preschool First Steps program; Brookside School will house first and second grades; Claremont School will house third and fourth grades; and Roosevelt School will house fifth grade. Anne M. Dorner Middle School and Ossining High School will remain unchanged. The current Assistant Principals will remain in their present schools with the Principals providing leadership as follows:
• Park School: First Steps, Prekindergarten, and Kindergarten
• Ms. Zoila Tazi, Principal
• Mr. Corey Reynolds, Assistant Principal
• Brookside School: 1st and 2nd Grades
• Ms. Ann Dealy, Principal
• Ms. Ferzeen Bhana, Assistant Principal
• Claremont School: 3rd and 4th Grades
• Mr. Felix Flores, Principal
• Ms. Francine Jacobson, Assistant Principal
• Roosevelt School: 5th Grade
• Ms. Elizabeth Wallinger, Principal
The Board of Education was assisted in this decision by a Facilities Advisory Committee, chaired by Deputy Superintendent Raymond Sanchez and Executive Director of Finance and Operations Linda Carpenter and comprised of administrators, teachers, students, parents, and community members. The committee spent many months gathering information about the space challenges faced by the district and researching the possible solutions. After considerable deliberation, the committee, along with school administrators, determined that creating a Fifth Grade Academy at Roosevelt School was the most educationally sound and cost effective answer to the crowded conditions at Park School.
“We extend our appreciation and thanks to each committee member and to the many other colleagues and consultants who contributed to this major effort,” said Dr. Glassman. “During the next few months, we will be working together to reorganize our grade placements in our elementary schools to ensure that our youngest learners and all elementary school students are educated in classrooms with adequate space. We approach this new opportunity with excitement, enthusiasm, and optimism.”
(Press release courtesy of Nicole Reis/Ossining school district.)