The PRES Press

Principal's Monthly Newsletter, September 2018

A Message from Principal Amy Fishkin

Happy Labor Day!

Labor Day is a well-deserved tribute for those who work so hard. No matter what kind of work you do, Labor Day is for you. Hope you find time to relax, unwind, and enjoy this Labor Day with friends and family.

Welcome Back to School!

We are so excited to welcome both new and returning students to a new school year at Pound Ridge Elementary School! The faculty, staff, and custodians have been hard at work all summer cleaning and preparing the school for your return! Cubbies are labeled, bulletin boards are ready for student work, and classroom materials are ready to be explored! We look forward to partnering with you to create an exciting school year filled with discovery, questioning, problem solving, relationship building, and growth.

First Week of School

Please remember that Tuesday, September 4th is the first day of school. Please make sure to check your child's transportation information for updated bus number, as well as drop-off and pick-up times. Our school day begins with a morning recess from 8:40-8:55. As the buses arrive, staff will be on hand to direct all students to the playground and then to their new classrooms. Our instructional day is from 9:00 AM - 3:00 PM. Any student who arrives after 9:00 AM will be marked late. Please make every effort to have your child come to school on time. At the end of the day, if you are picking up your child between 3:05-3:20 pm, pick-ups will take place in the Gym, as they did last year.


Please make sure to label your child's sweatshirts, coats, lunchboxes, backpacks, water bottles, and other personal items brought to school with your child's first and last name. This will ensure your child's personal items are returned to you each day.


Attention Kindergarten Families:

The first two days of school for our kindergarten students, September 4th and 5th, will be half days. Kindergarten students will be dismissed at 12:30 pm. Students will be placed on their regular bus home at 12:30, unless you indicate otherwise in School Dismissal Manager. An introductory email from School Dismissal Manager was sent to you on August 28, 2018. Please make sure to check this email, log into your account, and familiarize yourself with the School Dismissal Manager program. We will be using this system for daily dismissal changes starting on the first day of school.

Building Updates

In the spirit of continual improvement, and thanks to the recent budget allocations, PRES has been able to make improvements to our programs for students, as well as the building & grounds:
  • Our teachers will be receiving professional development in the area of reading through Teachers College Reading & Writing Project, as we implement the reading workshop model, across all five elementary schools. Stay tuned for more information.
  • Our students will now receive library instruction once per week, rather than once every two weeks (as we did last year). Our librarian, Mrs. Rina Baldo, will be shared between two schools rather than three schools this year. She will share her time between PRES and BVES. Mrs. Baldo will be with us on Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays. Your child's teacher will let you know which day of the week your child's class will visit the school library.
  • The exterior entrances to the building and school sign have all been painted.
  • New stage curtains and gym mats will be installed to improve the safety of our students in the gym, as well as improve the appearance of our stage.

PRES faculty and staff engage in collaborative problem solving at our Opening Day, as they unlock BreakOut kits!

Back to School Nights - Save the Dates!


Parents and guardians are invited to meet their child's teacher and learn about the curriculum at Back to School Night. More information to come...


Grades 3-5: Thursday, September 13th @ 7:00-8:30 pm


Grades K-2: Monday, September 17th @ 7:00-8:30 pm

New Playground Equipment Coming Soon!

Thanks to the incredible generosity of our parent community, and successful fundraising efforts by our PTA, PRES is expected to install four new pieces of playground equipment on our playground:
    • Nexus Nautilus 2 - A “Ninja Warrior” type obstacle course

    • Flux Capacitor - a colorful climbing structure

    • Tensile Tough Horseshoe Climber

    • Bongo Perch connectors

These pieces will replace the large red tire swing frame that is no longer in use.
New playground equipment

PRES C.A.R.E. Character Education Program

C.A.R.E. is the PRES school-wide positive behavioral support system that encourages students and staff to care for themselves, others, and the greater school community. C.A.R.E. highlights four key components of positive behavior:


Cooperation, Accountability, Respect, and Effort


Through C.A.R.E., we encourage a nurturing school climate by promoting pro-social behavior, increasing learning time, and teaching positive social skills. PRES students are involved in weekly classroom meetings, spirit days, round of a “PAWS,” community rocks, and monthly assemblies.


When a PRES student is caught caring, he/she is awarded a "round of a paws," which is shared on the morning announcements. The PRES student caught caring chooses a uniquely painted rock to place out in the community, bringing a little art and beauty into the lives of others! Whenever you see a painted rock hidden in the community somewhere, it is a sign that a random act of kindness has been committed at PRES.


Our first all school assembly, to celebrate our C.A.R.E. core values, will be held on Friday, September 7, 2018. Our first monthly school spirit day will be Friday, September 28th. It will be Rock Star Day! We invite all students and staff to unleash their inner rock star, in celebration of our newly painted CARE-ing rocks!

Introduction of New Faculty and Staff

We are pleased to introduce and welcome the following new staff members to our PRES school community, joining us from other buildings in the District:


  • Helayna Hirschkorn, School Psychologist, part time
  • Julie Davidson, Learning Specialist
  • Becky Mildenhall, Teacher Aide


As a school community, we also support Manhattanville graduate students who are in the process of becoming teachers and will be working alongside our teachers this year. Please join me in welcoming:

  • Jessica LaPadula, Courtney Crozier, and Andrijana Komnenovic, interns
  • Georgie Highton and Alex Scapperotti, student teachers

PRES Student Handbook

We are thrilled to publish our updated parent-student handbook for your reference. The Pound Ridge Elementary Student Handbook includes important information about school procedures. In the handbook, you will find information about:


  • School Hours
  • Arrival and Dismissal
  • Attendance
  • Homework expectations
  • Lost & Found
  • Lunch & Recess
  • Communication
  • Parking
  • Programs and Services
  • and more!


Please click on the link below, or visit our school website, to access the student handbook:


PRES 2018-2019 Student Handbook

September Events at PRES:

Sept. 4 = First Day of School (K-5)

Sept. 4 = 12:30 pm Early Dismissal for Kindergarten ONLY

Sept. 5 = 12:30 pm Early Dismissal for Kindergarten ONLY

Sept. 7 = First CARE Assembly (students only)

Sept. 10-11 = NO SCHOOL (Rosh Hashanah)

Sept. 13 = Back to School Night (Gr. 3-5) @ 7:00 pm

Sept. 14 = PTA All School Ice Cream Social @ 5:00-6:30 pm

Sept. 17 = Back to School Night (Gr. K-2) @ 7:00 pm

Sept. 19 = NO SCHOOL (Yom Kippur)

Sept. 21 = Ice Cream Social Rain Date

Sept. 26 = Picture Day

Sept. 27 = Parent-Principal Coffee (K-5) @ 9:30-10:30 am

Sept. 28 = School Spirit Day - Rock Star Day!