1/16/23 - 1/20/23

From the Desk of MVG

Dear EFS Parents,

  • The Essex Fells School is eager to welcome all of our new kindergarten and preschool families registering for the 2023-2024 school year. Registration will be open January 23rd-27th. Registration is conducted digitally and instructions can be found on the front page of the Essex Fells School website, www.efsk-6.org. Please contact Mrs. Rivera in the Main Office with any questions, 973-226-0505 x211. Click here for details.

  • The EFS Staff continues to work on our District Curriculum Revisions. Thus far, Media and Health/PE have been approved by the BOE and may be viewed on the Curriculum Corner portion of our website. STEAM, Spanish, and Visual/Performing Arts are due for approval at the January 18, 2023 Board meeting. First draft documents will be provided to the Board this month in the areas of Math, Language Arts, Social Studies and Science. We are thankful to the teachers for all of their time and expertise in updating these instructional tools.
  • School will be closed on Monday, January 16, 2023 in honor of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s birthday. We encourage students to use this time to help others through a day of service.


Dr. Michelle V. Gadaleta


  • Since September 2022, we have had 72 reported cases of the Flu to EFS: 71 student cases, 1 staff cases and 0 volunteer cases. 1 case thus far for the month of January.

  • Since September 2022, we have had 32 reported cases of COVID-19 to EFS: 21 student cases, 11 staff cases and 1 volunteer case. 3 cases thus far for the month of January.

Please click Health Info for information on exclusions and guidelines. We encourage you to keep ill students home so that when they return they are ready to learn.

Counselor’s Corner


CATCH PHRASE: Believe in the power of YET

When a child tells you they don't like or are no good at something, encourage them to use the word YET. "I don't like this yet" leaves room for change. "I can't do this yet" gives space for improvement.

Students will build grit and develop a growth mindset by:

  • Staying with a task and not giving up.

  • Showing a POSITIVE attitude when completing tasks.

  • Thinking positive thoughts--Instead of saying "I can't", say "I will try harder."

  • Being patient and willing to work hard.

  • Continuing to try when things seem challenging.

If you would like more information or have any questions please contact Mrs. Pilato (epilato@efsk-6.org) and/or Ms. Santin (rsantin@efsk-6.org).

PTA Press

  • Session 2 Lunch ordering will open end of this week on MobileArq. Session one orders go through January 27.
  • Family Fun Night has been moved to March 14. Details to follow soon.
  • Our school yearbook app Entourage is available to add photos from the school year. We need help from all parents to upload class photos. Any questions, please reach out to Sandra Oubina.
  • Our next PTA meeting will be Thursday 2/2/23 at 8:45am in Media Center.
  • Looking ahead to next school year, if you have any interest in hosting the annual cocktail party at your home next September please reach out to Belinda O'Donnell.
  • Looking for secretary for the board for next school year. Please reach out to Belinda O’Donnell.

Foundation News


Registration for the winter session ends Friday, January 13th! All registrations must be completed in MobileArq by tomorrow. We regret that it will not be possible to allow any registrations after that date.

The session will run for 7 weeks from January to March. See updated schedule below, and view detailed information at https://www.effee.org/copy-of-enrichment-winter-2023. Please contact us at efsenrichment@gmail.com with any questions.

Tuesdays: 1/24, 1/31, 2/7, 2/14, 2/28, 3/7, 3/14 (3/28 makeup)
Animation Jr. – Mr. Pannullo (grades K-3) SOLD OUT

American Girls Galore – Mrs. Rivera (grades K-3)

Boxercise – Performance Inc. (grades K-6) SOLD OUT

Wednesday mornings: 1/25, 2/1, 2/8, 2/15, 3/1, 3/8, 3/15 (2/22 makeup)
Set Design – Mrs. Banek & Mrs. McNish (grades 4-6)

Wednesdays: 1/25, 2/1, 2/8, 2/15, 3/1, 3/8, 3/15 (3/29 makeup)
Animation – Mr. Pannullo (grades 3-6)

Chess Challenge – Mr. Wallace (grades 2-6)

Chef it Up Battle – Chef it Up (grades K-6) SOLD OUT

Weather Works – Steam 2 Go (grades K-6)

Thursdays: 1/26, 2/2, 2/9, 2/16, 3/2, 3/9, 3/16 (3/30 makeup)
Craft Corner – Mrs. Rivera (grades 2-4)

3D Printing – Mr. Pannullo (grades 3-6)

Fun w/ Board Games – Mrs. Focarino (grades 3-6)

Yoga – Kidding Around Yoga (grades K-3)

Chef it Up Battle – Chef it Up (grades K-6)

Club and Activities

Stock Market Club

The Stock Market Club will have an informational meeting on January 23rd during recess/lunch for 5th and 6th grade students. This is an opportunity for students to learn about investing and economics as they grow their virtual stock portfolio in a competition against other students in New Jersey. It will be held in Room 105. If you have any questions, please contact Mr. Manlapid (emanlapid@efsk-6.org) or Mr. Panullo (mpannullo@efsk-6.org).

6th Grade Broadcasting Club

Broadcasting Club is for 6th-grade students and meets almost every Tuesday at 8:00am in the STEAM Lab. Students will learn to direct, film and produce the morning announcements. If you have any questions please contact Ms. McNish (KMcNish@efsk-6.org), Mr. Pannullo (mpannullo@efsk-6.org) and Ms. Pakonis (ppakonis@efsk-6.org).

Meeting Dates:

January 17, 24, 31

February 7, 14, 28

March 14, 21, 28

April 4, 18, 25

May 2, 9, 16, 23, 30

June 6, 13

6th Grade Art Club

Art Club is a 12 week club that runs Wednesday mornings from 7:30am to 8:30am. They participate in designing ceiling tiles to be put up in the school for everyone to enjoy. Students meet in the art room with Mrs. McNish, if you have any questions please contact her at KMcnNish@efsk-6.org.

Morning Ensemble Rehearsals

Orchestra rehearsals are held at 8:00am in the music room on Tuesday's.

Band rehearsals are held at 8:00am in the music room on Thursday's.

Chorus rehearsals are held at 8:00am in the music room on Friday's

Study Hall

Study Hall is a club that is open throughout the entire school year to students in grades 4-6 on Tuesday and Thursday during lunch/recess or just recess. This club allows children to study for tests, work on homework and long term assignments. If you have any questions please contact Mrs. Criscione at ncriscione@efsk-6.org.

Board Bits

The next Board of Education Meetings will be held on the following dates:

  • Regular Business Meeting - Wednesday, January 18, 2023 (Media Center)
  • Workshop Meeting - Wednesday, February 1, 2023 (Media Center)


The 2nd installment of preschool tuition in the amount of $1,500 is due February 1st.

For any Essex Fells Families who have recently moved within town, please update all information in the school office by providing three (3) proofs of residency: a deed, lease or tax bill; a photo ID; and a utility bill, all with your name and Essex Fells address. In addition, a signed residency/domicile status form, provided by the school, is required.

School News


Moana Jr. Morning Song Rehearsals are on Mondays at 8am in the music room. Please check the Google classroom for the schedule.

If you have any questions, please contact Mr. Trogani at jtrogani@efsk-6.org.


The Student Council is excited to partner with World of Change (WOC), an organization introduced to us by former EFS student Simone Caplan. In the spirit of Martin Luther King, Jr. and his efforts to impact change, we are hoping to create change from change for these three student-chosen organizations. Each student will receive a coin pouch to fill with loose change and from Monday, January 9th until Friday, January 20th, they will pour the contents into the vessel(s) of their liking found in their homeroom. Each homeroom will have three jars, each devoted to an organization that meets one of the 6 WOC categories. The Student Council has chosen the following three to be the recipients of our efforts:

HEALTH: Making Headway Foundation

ANIMALS/NATURE: One Step Closer Animal Rescue

HOUSING: Habitat for Humanity

Check out the links below for more information and start checking those couch cushions!

World of Change

Unbelievable World of Change


With the winter weather making its arrival, please look for EFS schedule changes via Blackboard alerts, the App, our website, Channel 12 and Channel 7.


  • Don't forget to download the EFS App if you have not done so already for a quick and easy way to access school information.
  • Thank you for all your likes on our Instagram account! If you have requested to follow us and have not been accepted it may be because we cannot recognize your profile name. Please email Mr. Pannullo (mpanullo@efsk-6.org) to gain access. Please know this is a secure account and only the parents and staff of EFS will be accepted.


Just a reminder that if your child is going to be absent from school you must call the attendance line (973-226-0505, press 1) and leave a detailed message as to the reasons for the absence. Nurse Renz must track all illness related school absences.

Upcoming Events

Important Dates

01/16/23 - School Closed: Martin Luther King Jr. Day

01/31/23 - Mid Marking Period 2

02/03/23 - Spirit Meeting @ 8:40am (Wear Orange and Black)

02/17/23 - 12:45pm Dismissal

02/20/23 - School Closed: President's Day

02/21/23 - School Closed: Staff Professional Development Day

03/03/23 - Spirit Meeting @ 2:00pm (Wear Orange and Black)

03/10/23 - Moana Jr. Performance @6:00pm

03/11/23 - Moana Jr. Performance @1:00pm

03/14/23 - PTA Family Fun Night - NO HOMEWORK!

03/17/23 - Marking Period 2 Ends

03/17/23 - Moana Jr. Rain date

03/18/23- Moana Jr. Rain date

03/22/23 - 12:45pm Dismissal: Parent Teacher Conferences

03/23/23 - 12:45pm Dismissal: Parent Teacher Conferences

03/24/23 - Marking Period 2 Report Cards live at @1:00pm

Community Outreach


Please help support the EF Garden Club and receive beautiful flowers at the same time! Bed and Borders is busy growing their own plant materials, take a look at the Bed & Borders 2023 Catalog. Pre-Orders are due by January 31st and will be delivered the week of May 8th.

Complete the order form, email to Collene Toth at cellen22@aol.com OR

drop off/mail to Collene at 283 Roseland Avenue.

PAYMENT: PLEASE MAKE CHECKS PAYABLE TO GCEF and mail with order form OR ZELLE to gardenclubef@gmail.com


The Literacy Center at Caldwell University will be offering a reading/writing program for students in grades 1-3. Click here for details.


The Annual Frost Valley Essex Fells Father/Daughter Weekend (Essex Fells residents Grades K-6) is back and scheduled for Friday May 5th - Sunday May 7th. An email to prior attendees was distributed this past week with detailed information. If interested in attending, please reach out to moran0906@gmail.com. Registration will close around the end of the month.


The Essex County Division of Community Action is hosting a free Project Homeless Connect Day. click here for details.


Atlantic Health System’s Goryeb Children’s Hospital is proud to share our January 2023 webinar offerings free of charge. We will be offering the first webinar on Tuesday, January 17, 2023 at 6:00pm titled: Emergency Room or Urgent Care: Where Do I Go? and the second webinar will be held on Thursday, January 26, 2023 at 7:00pm titled Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACES): The Impact on Mental and Physical Health. Pre-registration is required. Attendees can register for one or both webinars.


The Workforce Innovation and Opportunity ACT (WIOA) funds grants to eligible individuals for job skills training. If you're looking to upgrade your skills, we can help find the funding. Click for more details.

(WIOA Services)


Please click the link below for a list of helpful resources:

(Counseling Resources)


The Tiny Treasures program at Essex Fells School is available for the 2022-2023 school year. If you would like to register your child, please complete the registration packet below and contact Jennifer Zampino directly.

(Tiny Treasures Registration Packet)

Lost and Found

The lost and found has already made many friends. Please reach out to Mrs. Rivera if any of the items below belong to you.

In an effort to keep the lost and found empty this year please label your children's items when possible, even initials will help us get their items back to their rightful owner.