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Democrat File Photo by Ted Waddell

WORKING ON A mixed media collage project last year in Livingston Manor teacher Lillian Phillips’ 7-12 art class were, from the right, 16-year-old 11th graders Carina Bowers, Erin Roberts and Kaitlin McCann. They’ll be returning to school tomorrow as seniors.

School Year Begins Anew

By Ted Waddell, Rob Potter, Matt Youngfrau and Susan Monteleone
SULLIVAN COUNTY — September 4, 2001 – The summer has passed as fleetingly as ever, and once again, the majority of Sullivan County’s students will be heading back to school this week.
Seven of the eight public school districts in the county along with BOCES will begin classes tomorrow, September 5. Tri-Valley will begin on Thursday, September 6.
Thus, the Democrat provides the following information as a general overview. For more info, please call your respective school district.
At Eldred Central, school starts September 5. Mackenzie Elementary in Glen spey will open at 9 a.m. and close at 3:30 p.m. Eldred High opens at 7:30 a.m. and ends their day at 2:05 p.m.
Mackenzie’s enrollment is projected to be 398, while Eldred High’s will be 345.
And there’s new principals too – Bruce Wheeler at Eldred and Kathryn E. Ryan at Mackenzie.
Superintendent Candace Mazur said, “Our focus on academics continues to be of top priority. Our Comprehensive District Education Plan is in its third year, and our test data continues to show positive results. The priorities on the plan continue to be improving student achievement in grades K-12 and increasing social, emotional and academic success of students in grades 5- 8.
To reach the Mackenzie Elementary School, call 856-9723. Eldred Senior High School can be reached at 557-6014.
The 2001-2002 school year for the Fallsburg Central School District gets underway on Wednesday, September 5.
The Benjamin Cosor Elementary School (grades K-5, ph: 434-4110) is open Monday through Friday from 9 a.m.-3 p.m. The new Middle School (grades 6-8, ph: 434-6800) is open Monday through Friday from 7:45 a.m. to 2:25 p.m. The High School (grades 9-12, ph: 434-6800) is open Monday through Friday from 7:45 a.m. to 2:25 p.m.
For grades K-12, projected enrollment for the year is 1,400 students.
Several special education students have come back to Fallsburg from BOCES. According to Superintendent Gary Holbert, they will set up an Alternative High School structure.
"It is for students who are not highly successful in standard education classes. It will work better," he said.
Just opened is the new Middle School, which will free up some space in the other two schools. Holbert called it "exciting and will allow us to do more with the kids."
Liberty Central opens its doors on September 5 to a projected enrollment (Pre-K to 12) of 1,859 students.
New programs include Empire State Advantage, a program that reviews the quality of everything in the district; a curriculum council to start reviewing how instruction is delivered district-wide; “Leap for Your Dreams,” a 21st Century Grant Program that provides a wide variety of after-school offerings from 3:15 p.m. to 8 p.m. in such areas as homework help, drama classes, a Harry Potter class, quilting, extra help in ESL (English as a Second Language) and “Reading Buddies”; and Phase III of the district technology program.
New staff includes former middle school co-principal Mary Scheutzow as the district’s new director of curriculum; former middle school co-principal Jack Strassman, who is now principal; Rob Worden as the assistant principal at the middle school; and Barbara Blakey, the director of student services.
Class hours are from 8 a.m.-3:05 p.m.
In addition, a building committee is looking into current and long-term needs to make recommendations by December toward what facilities improvements to make.
“I’m very optimistic because I think we have a very strong staff,” said Superintendent Brian F. Howard. “We know we can’t work any harder, but we can work a lot smarter to get better results.”
Liberty’s central switchboard can be reached at 292-5400.
Livingston Manor
Students in Livingston Manor report for the first day of classes tomorrow at 8:10 a.m., and like other regular school days in the 2001-2002 academic year, will be dismissed at 2:45 p.m.
Among the changes made to the school over the summer was the installation of a new elevator in the merger area of the original building and the PTA wing, and creation of handicap ramps, as well as renovations to the boys’ and girls’ lockerrooms. In addition, new windows, ceilings, lighting and heating systems have been installed in the school’s primary wing.
The projected enrollment in grades K-12 for the upcoming year is 740 students.
The phone number for the school is 439-4400.
There are several new staff members in the district. They include Robert Farrell, high school computer teacher; Mary Finneran, high school art; Diana Fredenburg, high school math; Maria Raia, high school math; Douglas Spiegel, high school special education – English and social studies; Christina Sprague, instrumental music; Patrick Sweeney, Dean of Students/Athletic Director; Sarah Walker, high school special education – inclusion; and Patrick Weiler, sixth grade.
“We are continuing our commitment to quality education and implementing the Regents’ standards,” said Middle/High School Principal Debra Lynker. “We are looking forward to enhancing our technology program and expanding opportunities for students in this area.”
The 2001-2002 school year for the Monticello Central School District gets underway on Wednesday, September 5.
The Emma Chase Elementary School in Wurstboro (888-2471) is open Monday through Friday from 9:15 a.m.-3:23 p.m. The Cornelius Duggan Elementary School in White Lake (583-5390) is open Monday through Friday from 9:15 a.m.-3:23 p.m. The George Cooke Elementary School in Monticello (794-8830) is open Monday through Friday from 9:15 a.m-3:23 p.m. The Kenneth Rutherford School in Monticello (794-4240) is open Monday through Friday from 8:55 a.m.-3:03 p.m.
The new Robert J. Kaiser Middle School (794-3058) is open Monday through Friday from 7:41 a.m. to 2:11 p.m. The High School (794-8840) is open Monday through Friday from 7:41 a.m. to 2:13 p.m.
The entire school’s projected enrollment for the year is 3,500 students.
Among the new additions in Monticello is a new principal in the Duggan School. She is Patti Sonnenschein. At the Rutherford school, the new assistant principal is John Correa.
The major addition to the Monticello school system is the new Robert J. Kaiser Middle School. The state-of-the-art facility is located right next to the high school on Forestburgh Road (Route 42). It is named for a former superintendent who retired in 1988. A dedication ceremony will be held on October 27.
At the high school, there will be a new distance learning computer lab. Superintendent Eileen Casey is very excited about the new lab.
"The opportunities are endless. We can share courses and offer classes to many school districts,” she explained. “This is the tip of the iceberg [as to] where we go with it."
The old middle school on St. John Street is being leased to BOCES. Casey stated that they may have some programs there as well.
The Roscoe Central School opens its doors for the 2001-2002 academic year at 8 a.m. tomorrow. The normal school day will run from 8 a.m. until 3 p.m.
Enrollment, from Pre-K through 12th grade, is 324 students.
This school year could see the groundbreaking for the building project district voters approved 15 months ago. Principal Mark Dupra said that the project, which includes building four new classrooms and a new gymnasium, received final approval from the state education department last week. He added that the bidding process for the project has begun, and the district hopes to break ground before November 1.
“We’re very, very excited about it,” Dupra said of the project. “Among other things, we’ll be able to form a stage and a classroom for music personnel.”
(The current Roscoe Central gymnasium cannot accommodate a regulation-size basketball court, and coaches and reserve players sit on the auditorium stage during basketball games. When music concerts and graduation ceremonies are held in the space, the gym floor is lined with chairs for the audience.)
A handful of new staff members have been hired for the 2001-2002 school year. They include Jackie Brockner – special education teacher; Janice Dusseldorp – remedial teacher; Kelly Hendrickson – Guidance Counselor; Terri Pryer – certified teaching assistant; and Matthew Slocum – social studies teacher.
To reach the school, call 439-3527 or (607) 498-4126.
Sullivan West
With a total project enrollment of 1,660 (Delaware Valley K-12, 510; Narrowsburg K-8, 175; Jeffersonville-Youngsville K-12, 875 plus 100 9th-12th graders from Narrowsburg), Sullivan West Central School is facing another year of finalizing the recent merger.
New programs include the “mini-merger” of faculty and students from Narrowsburg (9th-12th graders), who will be able to continue their advanced science projects at Jeff.
New staff includes Dr. Linda Widomski, elementary school principal at J-Y; several new elementary grade teachers; new science, English and mathematics teachers at J-Y; and new Spanish and technology teachers at DV.
Class hours are approximately 8 a.m-3 p.m., but that may vary by a few minutes due to complex bussing schedules at the three campuses – though they all start school on Wednesday, Sept. 5.
Building projects include the addition to the Narrowsburg building, for which bids will be solicited in mid- Sept.; and the new high school, for which bids will be solicited in December. There will be a public “open site visit” at the location of the new high school on Sept. 20 from 4:30 p.m.-6:30 p.m.
“It’s an exciting year, and we’re really looking forward to our third year as the newest school district in New York State,” said Superintendent Michael J. Johndrow. “The ‘mini-merger’ of Jeffersonville-Youngsville and part of Narrowsburg this year is the start of something great for the district.”
To reach Sullivan West at Jeffersonville-Youngsville, call 482-4610; for SW at Delaware Valley, call 887-5300; and for SW at Narrowsburg, call 252-3100.
Approximately 1,250 (Pre-K-12) students are expected to walk through Tri-Valley Central School’s doors in Grahamsville on Thursday, September 6 for the first day of school.
New programs to greet them will include a Pre-K curriculum (56 students); “Physical Best,” whereby the school will notify parents how their children stack up against typical national physical fitness norms; “Science 21,” a hands-on, inquiry-based science program for students in grades K-3; “Spelling Connections,” a unified spelling prgram in grades K-6; and character education in all grades.
Twenty-five new staffers will also greet students, including Donna Flynn Brown as the director of pupil personnel services.
Classes will be held from 8 a.m.-3:05 p.m.
A $12.8 million bond was recently passed; if approved by the NYS Education Department, the project will include construction of a new greenhouse, several classrooms, an auditorium and a gymnasium.
“As always, we’re very excited about continuing the journey of our students and aligning our curriculum with the real world,” said Neil Bright, assistant superintendent for curriculum and instruction. “We provide . . . an education they can use in the real world so they don’t get chewed up like hamburger. . . . We want them to strut their stuff.”
To reach Tri-Valley, call 985-2296.
The 2001-2002 school year for Sullivan County BOCES begins on Wednesday, September 5.
The Board Of Cooperative Educational Services has several different campuses. The main campus in Liberty (Special Education and Career and Tech, 292-7900) is open Monday through Friday from 8 a.m.-2:40 p.m. (Special Ed) and 8-11 a.m. (Morning Session for Career and Tech) and noon-3 p.m. (Afternoon Session for Career and Tech). The Center for Career Development in Monticello (Adult Education, 791-4070) is opening at varying hours for day and evening classes. There is also the Youngsville School for Alternative Education that can be reached at 482-4760.
Their total projected enrollment is 220 students for special education, 340 students for Career and Tech, and 75 students for Adult Education.
One of the new programs BOCES Superintendent Martin Handler is excited about is the Performing Arts Academy for Juniors and Seniors.
"It is a program for those in the performing and communication field to learn employment skills," he said.
The course will be taught by Stan Raiff of Catskills’ IDEA.
Also new to the BOCES staff is Derek Dalton. Dalton will be teaching Advertising Design and Computer Graphics. He was a graphic designer for many years in New York City. Handler described him as "very skilled and a valuable asset."
"This will be another year of challenge," Handler commented. "The standards have increased. It will be a challenge to move the kids further up."
Another change taking place this year is that some special education students are going back to their home districts. It is part of a five-year effort to transition those students back.
"It is for those who would benefit,” Handler explained. “The goal is to make the most appropriate placement for each youngster."

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