11/29/21 - 12/3/21

School News

Dear EFS Parents,

Best Wishes for a happy and healthy Thanksgiving holiday. Please see the below Holiday Guidance from our local Health Department.

(Holiday Guidance)


Dr. Michelle V. Gadaleta


  • As of 11/24/21, six COVID-19 cases have been reported to the district. Please remain vigilant in maintaining safety protocols outside of school including masking and physical distance for unvaccinated individuals so that we can continue to learn and work in a safe and healthy school environment.
  • COVID-19 Vaccinations: children ages 5-11 are now eligible to receive the COVID-19 Vaccine. The CDC recommends everyone ages 5 and older get a vaccine to help protect against COVID-19. If your child becomes vaccinated, please send a copy of their vaccination card once complete to Nurse Mary.
  • Unvaccinated students/staff out for illness for 2 or more days will need to provide a negative COVID-19 rapid or PCR test from a physician prior to returning to school.
  • Siblings of an ill student may remain in school unless a positive COVID-19 test is reported which will result in an exposure quarantine.
  • The district may use their discretion to request further information on a case by case basis.
  • Travel Quarantine: Any unvaccinated student/staff member who has traveled outside of NJ, NY, PA, CT or DE will need to quarantine for 10 days or provide a negative COVID test on day 3, 4 or 5 to return to school with results from a physician.
  • The Safe Return Committee will review current procedures and make any necessary changes at the next meeting in early December.


The Essex Fells School Community continues to support first grade teacher, Kelly DaCosta, in her fight against Stage 4 Lung Cancer. With November being both a month that highlights gratitude and Lung Cancer Awareness, it is important to highlight our thanks for the ongoing care and positivity extended to this much-loved woman. Lung Cancer can affect anyone, including non-smokers, like Mrs. DaCosta. Since her diagnosis in March of 2020, she has been receiving monthly treatments at Memorial Sloan Kettering in New York City. Red has been her power color and it is now a common sight to catch the staff rocking the hue on her treatment days. If you and your children would like to join in on the wave of red, stay tuned for alerts to our wear red for Mrs. DaCosta and be #stronglikeher.


All students go outside for lunch/recess daily as well as group activities. As the cold weather is upon us, please remember to send your children to school with coats, hats and gloves to keep them warm while outside.

Additionally, please be sure that student clothing is appropriate for school and does not impact the educational environment. While crop tops are a trend at this time, bare mid-drifts may not be visible at school. Please be sure that an under shirt is worn to provide coverage and comfort for all students and staff.


11/25/21 - School Closed: Thanksgiving

11/26/21 - School Closed: Thanksgiving

12/3/21 - Spirit Meeting @8:40am - Wear Orange and Black!

12/8/21 - PTA Holiday Shop in the Media Center

12/22/21 - All School Concert (details to follow)

12/23/21 - 12:45pm Early Dismissal

12/24/21 - School Closed: Holiday Break Begins!


School will be closed for Thanksgiving Break on Thursday and Friday, November 25th & 26th with an early dismissal on Wednesday, November 24th. Following the break we will require a recertification of the COVID-19 Screening Form to be completed online thru Genesis for each student. If you do not complete the online form before their return to school, your child by will not be able to attend class. To access the form, please log onto your parent portal account and click on "FORMS" in the top right corner of the screen. You can access the link from our App or the shortcuts section of our website, www.efsk-6.org.


Grades 4-6 Band rehearsals will begin on Thursday, December 9th at 8:00am in the music room.

Please contact Mr. Trogani (jtrogani@efsk-6.org) if you have any questions.


Please be sure to send a reusable water bottle labeled with your child's name everyday to school. At this time, our water fountains are still not available for use due to State COVID-19 restrictions however, students are allowed to use the water filling stations to refill their water bottles as needed during the day.


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.


After school, students may not remain on school grounds unless supervised by an adult. Bicycles must remain on blacktop/sidewalks and may not be ridden on the grass.

PTA Press

Congratulations to Gemma Diaco, the big winner of the Gucci Bag Raffle! Thank you to everyone who purchased tickets to support our fundraiser.


Thank you to everyone who supported our school spirit wear sale! We are still waiting for some apparel orders. These will be delivered as soon as they come in.


This year’s holiday shop will take place on Wednesday, December 8. Once again, EFS students will shop to fulfill the wish lists of less fortunate children. Lists are provided by Family Intervention Services. Additional details coming soon!


Car magnets are still available! Support the 6th grade and purchase your EF car magnet today!

(Car Magnet Flyer)

Foundation News


Keep an eye out for the December issue of Essex Fells Magazine, featuring the STEAM Rigamajig grant that the EFFEE was able to approve, thanks to our community's generous donations. The Rigamajig Builder inspires imagination, curiosity, and discovery through hands-on and open-ended play, and the EFFEE was thrilled to be able to bring it to our school for all grades to experience.

Further updates coming soon.

Best wishes to all for a very happy and healthy Thanksgiving.

Clubs and Activities

Please check out the clubs and activities available to our students and generously sponsored by the Essex Fells Foundation for Educational Excellence. Teachers who run the clubs/activities will reach out to students with information and schedules.

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.

6th Grade Broadcasting Club

Broadcasting Club is a club where students meet weekly to direct, film and produce the morning announcements. Students meet at 8:00am in the gymnasium with Mrs. Castellano and Mr. Pannullo, if you have any questions please contact them at jcastellano@efsk-6.org and mpannullo@efsk-6.org.

Meeting Dates:

11/9/21 - Groups 1, 2, 3

11/16/21 - Groups 4, 5, 6

11/30/21 - Groups 1, 3, 4

12/7/21 - Groups 2, 5, 6

12/14/21 - Groups 1, 4, 5

1/4/22 - Groups 2, 3, 6

1/11/22 - Groups 1, 2, 6

Morning Ensemble Rehearsals

Chorus ensemble 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.

Third Grade Book Club

Students in grade 3 meet during their lunch period on Friday's in the Fall. They enjoy their lunch, read a good book and discuss big ideas! Students may simply listen to the story or participate in reading out loud with copies of the book provided by the Foundation. If you have any questions please contact Mrs. MacKenzie at KMacKenzie@efsk-6.org.

Board Bits

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

  • Monthly Workshop Meeting - Wednesday, December 1, 2021
  • Regular Business Meeting - Tuesday, December 14, 2021
  • The Board of Education will hold their Reorganization Meeting on Wednesday, January 5, 2022.

For any Essex Fells Families who have recently moved within town, please update all information with the main 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.

Upcoming Events

Community Outreach


If you have 60 college credits and love children, apply to be a sub at EFS! Interested in finding out more about a typical day as a sub?? Contact Mrs. Rivera in the main office for all the details!


The Tiny Treasures Before/Aftercare program at Essex Fells School is available for the 2021-2022 school year. If you would like to register your child, please complete the registration packet below and contact Jennifer Zampino directly.

Please note: Before Care is suspended at this time due to low enrollment.

(Tiny Treasures Registration Packet)

Lost and Found

The Lost and Found is quite full. Please take a look at the items below and stop by the main office or contact Mrs. Rivera (trivera@efsk-6.org) if something belongs to you. Labeling all of the items that come to school is very helpful. If the items are labeled we can quickly get it back to the child so nothing is lost.