The Cougar Paw

John Hydock Elementary School

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Welcome Back to School!

September 2018

Dear Partners in Learning,

On behalf of the John Hydock Elementary School staff, I would like to welcome you and your child to the 2018-2019 school year! We have been busy planning and preparing for another wonderful school year! Our dedicated and caring staff is eagerly awaiting the arrival of the students and ready to kick off the new school year!

I am happy to share with you some changes that have taken place at JHES:

We will have three sections of Kindergarten this year.

  • Megan Gallagher/Tracy Schwartzberg

  • Barbara Moore

  • Rhonda Marcantonio

First Grade will have four sections.

  • Kate Fehn/Amy Weinstein

  • Meghan Grosse

  • Debra Hart

  • Shannon Feeley

Second Grade will have four sections.

  • Cheryl Mastowski/Nancy Sager

  • Kristina Papero

  • Kristen Spieler

  • Hillary Lovenduski

Basic Skills:

  • Janet Strusz

  • Jackie Cuccia


  • Elizabeth Janney


  • Ryan Brydzinski

All other specials teachers remain the same.

Class Assignments

A great deal of time, effort and thought has gone into the process of student placement for the 2018-2019 school year. Careful consideration was given to input from staff and families as well as student learning styles. Classrooms have been balanced academically and socially. Our class lists are structured to provide equitable class sizes at each grade level. Moving students is difficult without causing imbalances and inequities. Thank you so much for being positive with your child and helping him or her understand that it is impossible to place all students with a preferred best friend or teacher. ALL of our staff works hard to make school a positive experience for ALL students. Thank you for understanding that sometimes it can take a few weeks for a child to acclimate to a new grade, peer group and/or teacher.

First Day of School

Thursday, September 6th HALF DAY OF SCHOOL

ALL STUDENTS should wear the nametags that they have received. In an effort to ease some of the first day confusion, the nametags will match the signs our teachers will be holding on the first day. Students will easily be able to locate their teacher by matching the shape of their nametag with the shape on their teacher’s sign. Please be sure to share this information with your children to help put any of their concerns at ease.

All John Hydock students will arrive at 8:40 AM and make their way to the front of the building. Students will be greeted by one of our warm, wonderful staff members who will guide them into the building to meet their teacher. Kindergarten students will be walked to the cafeteria where they will meet their teachers and all 1st and 2nd grade students will be guided to the gym to meet their teachers.

For the safety and security of our students and staff, all parents must remain outside of the building.

Once all buses have arrived and dropped off students at JHES, staff will escort students to the classrooms to begin their day.

AM/PM Parent Drop-off/Pick-up Guidelines:

Morning drop off is at the front door of the school. Please be sure to park your vehicle in a designated parking spot (not on the curb, please). Please note parents/guardians are only permitted to walk students into the building when signing your child in for late arrivals. When maneuvering through our parking lot, please use extreme caution. Keep in mind that our little ones are entering and exiting vehicles and moving through the parking lot on their way into the building. Please drive slow and cautious.

Afternoon parent pick-up is at the east side entrance from 3:20-3:25pm, on a REGULAR school and from 12:50-1:00 on a HALF day of school. Please be prepared to show identification. Parents/guardians will be required to sign out their child.

I appreciate your cooperation as we strive to keep our school safe and secure.

Please be sure to complete and return the "How I Go Home From School Everyday" form that was in your Back to School packet. We need this form on the first day of school.

This form is essential in helping the office staff ensure each child is going home the intended way. If there is any change in the normal dismissal for your child, PLEASE NOTIFY the main office. Thank you for your cooperation.

Mark Your Calendars!

Back to School Night is a fantastic opportunity for parents/guardians to meet their child’s teacher and visit their classroom. This event will take place at JHES on Thursday, September 27th. Further information will be forthcoming.

Parents as Partners

At John Hydock Elementary School, parents/guardians are regarded as partners. Please take advantage of the opportunity to be involved in your child’s school experience by joining the Columbus Home and School Association (CHAS) and/or volunteering in our school. Take simple steps to stay involved by engaging your child in conversation about their school day and monitoring homework. Remember to read with your child every day for at least 20 minutes. The benefits are incredible!

I eagerly look forward to greeting students and families again. It remains an honor and privilege to be the principal of JHES. Please stop by and say hello. Together, I know we will make this school year one of growth and achievement for all children.

If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to contact me at or 609.298.0308 ext. 1222.


Stacy Cullari

JHES Principal

Early Dismissal Snack

On early dismissal days, we do not serve lunch. Because of the length of the day, our classroom teachers typically allow students to bring a snack from home to eat in the classroom. Please keep in mind however, that there are restrictions on the snacks that we allow in our classrooms.

  • No nuts of any type or nut products will be allowed
  • No "wet" snacks are permitted (such as yogurt, jello, fruit cups, etc.)
  • Snacks should be "finger foods," able to be eaten without a fork or spoon

Below are some suggested options:

  • Fresh vegetables such as carrots, broccoli, bell peppers, cucumber slices, etc.
  • Dehydrated veggie chips
  • Dried fruit
  • Banana
  • Peeled orange
  • Fruit slices
  • Raisins
  • Cheese stick
  • Dry cereal
  • Rice cake
  • Pretzels
  • Crackers (Saltines, Goldfish,etc)

Thank you so much for your partnership in helping provide healthy options for our students
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School Spirit Schedule 2018-2019

(Please know that these days are all OPTIONAL. It is up to you if you wish for your child to participate.)

September 28 I Belong (Club/Team shirts) Day!

October 26 Mismatch Day! (Wear clothes that do not match)

November 30 Twin Day! (Dress like a friend)

December 21 Holiday/Winter Spirit Day!

January 25 Bring a Stuffed Friend to School Day!

February 22 Crazy Hat Day!

March 29 Jersey Day! (Wear your favorite team’s jersey)

April 12 Crazy Sock Day!

April 27 Dress Like Your Teacher Day!

May 31 Sunglasses Day!

June 14 Red/White/Blue Day! (Show your patriotism)

Every Friday (with the exception of the dates above) is School Spirit Day! Wear your spirit wear or school colors!

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John Hydock's School Rules

We Take Care of Ourselves

We Take Care of Others

We Take Care of Our School

September's Character Education Trait

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At John Hydock Elementary School, we believe in accentuating the positive that we see in our students; and we certainly see a lot of positive in this school!

As part of our Character Education program, we focus on a different character trait each month. During the month, teachers and staff are on the lookout for students who exemplify this trait. At the end of the month, teachers choose the students who most demonstrated that trait. Those students complete a Kid of Character poster that is displayed in the hallway with their photograph. During our whole school morning meeting, which takes place at the end of each month, these students are recognized with a special certificate. Other students are encouraged to cheer for their classmates and we all love to see the proud look of accomplishment on the faces of the winners.

Student Spotlight

Every other month, we choose just ONE student, based on specific criteria, from all of the Kid of Character winners to be our Student Spotlight. The criteria include the following:

• The student is an example for other students.

• The student works hard and always tries their best.

• The student is kind to other students.

• The student has a positive attitude.

• The student displays good conduct and follows the school rules.

This student will be recognized at the next scheduled board of education meeting. The family of the student is also invited to this meeting where the student will be honored.

We are looking forward to the opportunity to recognize the positive behaviors that we see in our students. It is evident that these traits are reinforced at home and we all thank you for the excellent work you are doing with your children.

Back to School Night

Wednesday, Sep. 27th 2017 at 6:30pm

19 Locust Avenue

Mansfield, NJ

Please join us for Back to School night! The time will be finalized as we get closer to the date.

Strategies For Reading With Your Child
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Stacy Cullari

Principal, JHES