The PRES Press

Principal's Monthly Newsletter, June 2019

A Message from Principal Amy Fishkin

Please enjoy our last edition of The PRES Press for the 2018-2019 school year. Wishing you all a restful, relaxing and enjoyable summer. Hope you find a chance to try something new, make a new friend, spend time outdoors, read a good book, and write a letter to someone you love! We look forward to welcoming you back to school in September 2019!

Courtyard Dedication Ceremony - Wednesday, June 19th!

All PRES families are invited to join us for a short dedication ceremony celebrating our new courtyard after school on Wednesday, June 19th at 3:30 PM. ICE CREAM WILL BE SERVED!

We are so grateful to the Pound Ridge Car Show, The Market at Pound Ridge Square, the Pound Ridge PBA, Billy Fortin and Mike Armistead for their generous donation to the PRES PTA, and to the Pound Ridge Partnership, who chose the PRES courtyard as one of their beautification projects for PRIDE Day this year. The new courtyard is already being used by our PRES classes as an outdoor classroom where reading, science observations, and writing inspirations are taking place!

Congratulations to our Retirees!

Congratulations to the following PRES staff members who are retiring at the end of the 2018-2019 school year:


Sue Novak - School Nurse

Kathleen Crohn - General Education Teacher

Susanne Cusato - Learning Specialist


Thank you for your dedication and years of service to the students and families of PRES and the larger Bedford Central School District. We are so grateful for your hard work and commitment to teaching and learning.


Additional Staffing Updates:


  • Our art teacher, Allison Belolan, will need to take a medical leave of absence, during the Fall 2019, in order to attend to necessary wrist surgery. We expect Allison will make a full recovery and return to PRES in January 2020. We are in the process of hiring a leave replacement for this position. I will share more information once we have a final candidate.
  • Our search for a new school nurse is underway and we expect to complete the rigorous search process by September 2019. I will share more information once we have a final candidate.

Successful First Annual Love 4 Lucas Fest

The PRES PTA and the Love4Lucas Foundation partnered together to hold the first annual Love4Lucas Fest, on Saturday, June 8th. The event was a huge success! Many parents and staff members volunteered, brought their families, and participated in the fun activities, as we raising funds for DIPG research and for the PRES PTA. It was a true community effort. Food was provided by The Market at Pound Ridge, as well as local food trucks. Guest staff members were soaked with water under the “Pitchburst.” Candy sushi, rock painting, watermelon eating contest, water balloon toss, and a hula hoop contest were among the favorite activities! Thank you to all the PRES families who volunteered their time to help make this event such a success! It was a beautiful reminder of the love, gratitude, and joy that Lucas Harashima continues to share with us.


Love4Lucas Photos taken by John Morgan

More Love4Lucas Photos taken by Sue Novak

Field Day Brings Fun and Fitness to PRES

Our annual Field Day 2019 was a huge success! We had beautiful weather and many new games and activities for the students to enjoy. There was great team spirit, cooperation, and sportsmanship! Wonderful parent volunteers, teachers, and teacher aides helped to make the event a success! Thank you to Danarde Roach and the custodians for all their hard work setting up the equipment. Thank you to Karen Kunz and all the parent volunteers for helping to run the events! A huge thank you to our PE teachers, Jean Mazzilli and Craig Henley, for leading this wonderful day for our students. The Market at Pound Ridge provided a delicious BBQ with hot dogs and hamburgers for the students and staff.


Click on the link below to see photos from Field Day:

Field Day 2019 Photos

PRES Participates in Memorial Day Parade

For the first time in many years, the Pound Ridge Elementary School participated in the Pound Ridge Memorial Day parade. Students and families created “floats” to honor PRES’ 80th birthday, and marched along Westchester Avenue among many other community organizations. Three PRES fifth graders were selected to read their Memorial Day essays explaining "what Memorial Day means to me." Congratulations to Peyton Hewitt, Natalie Deforges, and Natalie Labov for having their essays selected and read at the parade!

Pound Ridge Conservation Board Partners with PRES to Promote Plastic Bag Ban

The Pound Ridge Conservation Board invited PRES students to offer art work and hashtag suggestions for the plastic bag ban coming to Pound Ridge in September 2019. The Pound Ridge Conservation Board announced the PRES winners of the “Plastic Bag Ban” campaign contest at Pride Day on Sunday, June 2nd in Scott's Corners. The town will be spending the next several months promoting the new law in Pound Ridge banning single-use plastic bags from stores starting on September 1, 2019. We had 24 PRES students share their creative entries, many of them featuring both art and hashtags. The judging was difficult but in the end three students were selected as winners based on their creativity and delivery of the specific challenge. Their entries will be featured in the town's campaign this summer. All students who participated won a free ice cream at Blind Charlies! Congratulations to Lucan Cleary, Clare Dur, and Emily Fishkin for their winning art work and hashtag!

Avoid Summer Slide - Write to Mrs. Fishkin about your Summer Reading!

Summer slide is the phrase used to describe the backwards slide or loss of skills students experience if they do not keep up their reading and math skills over the summer. It is possible for students to regress 2-3 months over the summer if they do not practice their reading and math skills. Reading for as little as 20 minutes per day will help to prevent the summer slide and may even help your child make reading progress and return to school in September in good shape!


Have Your Child Write to Mrs. Fishkin about Summer Reading!

To promote summer reading, we are inviting students to write a postcard to Mrs. Fishkin, telling her about their favorite book and their favorite reading spot over the summer! We will display the postcards we receive on a bulletin board at the start of school! Thank you to Sarah Hiatt and the PTA for creating the summer reading postcards that will be sent home to students at the end of June.


Your child has worked very hard to get to where he/she is in reading today. Let’s not let the summer break get in the way of all that progress. To foster growth over the summer here are some strategies for your child to practice with your support.


Tricky Word Strategies:

  • Does that word make sense in the sentence? Try to re-read and think about it.
  • What word would make sense in this sentence?
  • Get your mouth ready… What letter do you see at the beginning? What sound does it make?
  • What word would make sense that begins with that letter/sound?
  • Is there anything in the picture that might help you with this word?
  • Read the sentence again to see if that make sense.
  • Try skipping the word. See if the sentence will help you figure it out. Then go back and reread.


Fluency and Expression:

  • Model fluent reading by reading aloud to your child
  • Read together with your child – You read a page, your child reads a page.
  • Repeated reading of a familiar text supports fluency and confidence
  • Echo Reading (leader reads a section and group or child repeats the same section)
  • Read poems and sing songs
  • Match your voice to a character’s personality or feelings


Reading Comprehension Strategies:

  • What do you think is going to happen next?
  • How do you think your character feels?
  • Why do you think the character…?
  • What kind of person do you think the character is and why?


Here is a great article from the International Literacy Association with tips for reducing the summer reading slide: Ten Tips For Reducing The Summer Slide

Senior Walk is Coming to PRES!

On Tuesday, June 25, 2019, our graduating FLHS seniors will return to PRES for a final march through the halls of their elementary school to celebrate their graduation from BCSD and reminisce on their elementary days at Pound Ridge Elementary School! All 5 BCSD elementary schools will be participating in this wonderful tradition that started at MKES several years ago. The Seniors will come in cap and gown, walk through the school, while our elementary students and staff gather in the hallways of PRES to cheer them on!

Upcoming Events at PRES

June 19 = Courtyard Dedication Ceremony @ 3:30 PM

June 19 = BOE Meeting (honoring retirees) @ 7:00 PM (FLMS)

June 24, 25, 26 = 11:30 AM Early Dismissal

June 24 = Grade 5 Moving Up Ceremony @ 9:30 AM

June 25 = FLHS Senior Walk @ PRES

June 25 = Grade 5 Kickball Game

June 26 = All School Moving Up Assembly (Last Day of School)

Enjoy the summer! See you in September 2019!