The Cougar Connection

Washington Avenue School News - 5/9/16


Thursday 5/12 - LAF 3rd Grade Parent Orientation - 7:00 pm

Friday 5/13- SPELLING BEE & Pizza Parlor Day

Food Pantry - Gr. 1CF

Tuesday 5/24- Screen Free Day & Cheryl Russo visits WAS 3rd Graders

Wednesday 5/25 - Kindergarten Orientation:

Two groups - one at 12:45 PM and the other at 2:00 PM

Wednesday 5/25 - Gr. 3G Field Trip

Thursday 5/27 - Friday 5/28 - SCHOOL CLOSED


Tuesday 5/31 - Delayed Opening

Wednesday 6/1 - K Going in to Gr. 1 Parent Orientation - 10:00 am

Friday 6/3 - Field Day

Thursday 6/9 - Kindergarten Field trip

Wednesday 6/15 - Grade 1 Portfolio Day

Friday, 6/17 - Kindergarten Portfolio Day

Tuesday 6/21 - 3:10 p.m.- 4:30 p.m. PTO Retirement party for Mary Quigley, Andie Elwell, Cheryl Sabins, Valerie Palmer

Wednesday 6/22 - Third Grade Breakfast 8:45 am, Third grade ceremony 10:00 am

Thursday 6/23 - Third grade Clap Out -- 12:15 K-2 Dismissal 12:35 pm

Principal's Update - Mary Quigley

It can be said that we have been "Busy Bees" this spring. There is a lot of excitement ii the air as students come together in hives to prepare for their spelling bee contest. We hope you can come out and enjoy the festivities. See the times below for each grade level.

The Faculty Appreciation Luncheon was extraordinary with decorations, mexican foods and desserts. Many children made cards, which warmed our hearts. Thank yo to all the parents for showering us with the delicious foods.

I've spoken to Ms. Dudlo and she is trying to coordinate her calendar to come to meet the children, staff and parents. I'll let you know as the dates become firm.

Think about putting the above calendar on your refrigerator. There will be more information on it next week.

Take care and enjoy the sunny weather we have been hoping for.

WAS PTO President's UPDATE Michelle Lease

We are excited to be hosting our 3rd annual SPELLING BEE this Friday night! We are in need of MANY helpers still and would love your help in making the night a success. See below for the link and specifics-we have over 50 spots open so please consider helping out. I'm always so impressed by our parent response to help when there is a need. Thanks to all the parents who pitched in and helped for our Teacher Appreciation Luncheon last week. We are so lucky to have such a wonderful dedicated group of parents!

PTO Thank you's

Lots of thank you's this week for the outstanding job putting together a fantastic teacher appreciation luncheon! Chairs-Jen Joel, Melissa McNamara, Annie Desmarais and Laura Grosso did a fabulous job pulling it all together. Thanks to Teresa Sachs, Cheryl Whitney, Belinda Hock, Jessica Insua, Marilyn Bankowski, Janine Hunter, Kris Zingone for wonderful cooking & baking. A big thank you to Leslie DeLeon of Tutzies Cakes for her hard work making the beautiful cake! Marilyn Bankowski, Dana Metviner, Karla Kirby, Phil Degnan for their help with setup and cleanup. Helpers who brought in refreshments...Kara Kopcsik, Joanna Ryan, Teresa Sachs, Rebecca Henwood, Megan Furst, Nicole Polychronopoulos, Shannon Valva & Mandy Pyper. Parents who helped out with lunch/recess during the lunch: Sara Lowe, Anne Davenport, Lisa Carey, Nicole Sennett, Carrie Hilgendorff, Sarah Speace, Suzanne Vermillion, Sarah Apgar, Monika Schaefer, Stephanie Azzaro, Rachel Nowikas, Rebecca Henwood, Tanya Santucci-Muehter, Richard Clark, Michelle Shehadi, Carrie Conte & Mindy Haller.

Thanks to Shannon Matter & Kara Kopcsik for running a terrific spring picture day!

New WAS Principal hired

Kristine Dudlo has been chosen as the new principal for WAS when Ms. Quigley retires this year. Dudlo, a 1999 graduate of The College of New Jersey, was unanimously approved by the Chatham Board of Education, 7-0, Monday night and will officially begin her tenure July 1, 2016. She is currently the Supervisor of Curriculum and Instruction in the Bloomingdale School District. Her former superintendent, Frank Buglione, came to the BOE meeting on Monday night and offered high praise for Dudlo's qualifications. She began her career as a Basic Skills Instruction teacher then became a certified Reading Specialist before moving onto more supervisory roles. At the BOE meeting Dr. LaSusa said "We did have about 100 people apply for the job. We had a final four that progressed to additional interviews. After the final four, there was one person still standing. And that person is with us tonight and her name is Kristine Dudlo. I'm very happy to recommend her to you for the appointment of the principal of Washington School."


Big image
Big image

SPELLING BEE this friday!

We hope to see you at our 3rd annual Spelling Bee this Friday, May 13th at the Chatham Middle School Auditorium.

First Grade: 6 p.m.-7 p.m.

Second Grade: 7 p.m.-8 p.m.

Third Grade: 8 p.m.-9 p.m.

Please “bee” on the look out for Wednesday’s mid-week news, which will detail grade specific arrival times.

We need your help!!

The Spelling Bee is set for this Friday, May 13th! MANY volunteers are needed to make this evening a success for our children and our school. Please consider “bee”-ing involved on Friday with our Third Annual Spelling Bee. We need helpers with setup, check-in, concession sales, clean up and helpers to bring in baked goods. It will take a hive of parents/guardians swarming around Chatham Middle School on the day/night of the spelling bee to make it all happen. Your child(ren) will love having you a part of the event! Click here for the volunteer spot signup.

2016-2017 Volunteer Opportunities

Please be sure to submit your 2016-2017 Volunteer Interest forms to the office by this Friday. Thank you!!

Please submit your pto receipts

Please make sure to submit all your outstanding expenses with receipts by June 10th. This is imperative so you can get reimbursed and we can reconcile the budget. Forms can be found in the treasurers folder in the of office. Questions? Please email Kristi Azzinaro (


Tuesday, May 10th is Paint the School Purple Day! Show your support for the Relay for Life of Chatham by wearing purple to school. Relay for Life of Chatham raises money for the American Cancer Society, which funds research, rides for cancer patients, wigs for patients that have lost their hair, and many other programs. Show your support on Tuesday!

Retirement celebration

Please save the date of Tuesday, June 21, 3:10-4:30 p.m. for our retirement party honoring Mary Quigley, Andie Elwell, Cheryl Sabins & Valerie Palmer. All current and past students and parents are invited.

We are putting together special thank you books for Ms. Quigley, Mrs. Elwell, Mrs. Sabins & Mrs. Palmer. The thank you notes will be done in class for current students.

If you have older kids and they would like to contribute to the book you can send it into the WAS office or drop to Anne Davenport's house at 31 Fairview Avenue . If you happen to have old pictures with the teachers, it would fun to include with your thank you. Thank you for your help in making this a special memory for them!

We are also looking for VOLUNTEERS to help find old class photos from Mrs. Elwell, Mrs. Sabin, Mrs. Palmer's years at WAS. If you are interested in helping please email and specify which teacher you would like to be responsible for:

Lastly, If you have any pictures of your kids with Ms. Quigley please email


Check it off your can pre-order next year's school supplies now! All you have to do is to visit Any questions please contact Dawn Caputo-Davison @

Fall Field Hockey Signups

If your daughter is interested in starting Field Hockey, the 3rd/4th Grade program is a great introductory clinic. It will run on the first 7 Saturdays of the school year from 12pm to 1:30pm. It will cover the basic skills of the game and focus on safe play. Each session will include a 45 minute skills portion followed by a 45 minute match to reinforce the lessons of the day. Girls will receive a reversible pinnie on the first day. To sign up click here.

5/3/16 boe meeting minutes

- Notes Submitted by Jean King

Notes from Board of Ed (Board) Meeting on 5/3/16 – Annual reorganization/Business meeting

1. Reorganization Action Items, which were all approved. The Regular business meeting followed.

2. Superintendent’s report

a. Dr. LaSusa explained the vetting process for the Washington Avenue School (WAS) principal. 100 people applied, ~16 were screened, 7 went to committee (included board President and parents), 4 were further vetted. Dr. LaSusa introduced the final candidate for the WAS principal position, Kristine Dudlo from the Bloomingdale School District. The board approved her appointment. Ms. Dudlo has overseen and led all curricular initiatives in the Bloomingdale district since 2012. These initiatives have spanned grade levels K-8. She holds degrees from The College of New Jersey and New Jersey City University;

b. PARCC is in progress, and has been uneventful with the exception of the Pearson outage. It should be noted that the district had to reach out to Pearson to report the outage;

c. Enrollment update – similar to 2015/2016, however 1st grade is currently lower than prior year.

3. CHS Robotics teacher (Julie Ryan) and students (5 of 7) came to give a presentation. The class has been involved in the 1st Technology Challenge (FTC) and Technology Student Association (TSA). They demonstrated their robot and robotic arm. The robot is part of a rescue mission themed FTC. They were required to design, build, program, and document the robot. They were also required to fundraise and do outreach. There is a home meet on 5/21, please consider coming out to support the team. The TSA spans 2,000 schools in 49 states. The work done by these students is impressive. Julie is very dedicated. Budgeting money for this new (this year) position has been worthwhile.

4. Business Administrators Report

a. H.S. counseling office is 90% complete;

b. H.S. HVAC replacement will be done when children are not in the building. The exact timing has yet to be determined.

5. Committees

a. Personnel – met new principal;

b. Curriculum – meeting focused on technology review. Discussed possibility of chromebooks for each student in upper grades, would not increase budget;

c. Finance/Facilities – proposed school budget for 2016/2017 school year would be a 2.35% budget increase. Included in this number is the cost for a p/t trainer, money for technology, and the track team. Currently a new psychologist is not included in this number. Referendum vote is anticipated on 9/27. Expectation is that Borough would vote at the M.S., and the Township at the H.S. The district is still waiting for some debt service numbers from the state so the amount of the referendum is currently unknown. The state will pay up to 40% of the debt service on certain projects. The referendum is expected to include money for the following: H.S. auditorium, M.S. auditorium, M.S. STEM (3-4 rooms), Cougar Field, Milton classrooms (4), and roofs. Based on the survey sent out in the fall these items were the most popular. Please see district website for more information. More information to follow in coming months.

d. Policy and Planning – To address neighbors concerns regarding usage of volleyball courts signs will be put up. Wording to be finalized.

e. Music and Theatre Boosters – Our students continue to do well in competitions and attend the all-state chorus. Tuesday and Wednesday there will be 1 act plays at the H.S. at 7pm.

6. Public Commentary:

a. Resources for STEM should be increased. The teacher donated a lot of time. Response: It is being increased.

b. Stress for the kids should be limited around AP time. Lots of children taking many different AP exams. They need time to study.

c. Time away from homework allows children to pursue other interests.

d. Why will the Referendum vote be in September? Previously Board said they wanted to save money by holding elections in November and the expectation was that voter turnout would be better. Response: Due to presidential election it was decided September would be better.

e. Does the Board have opinion about PARCC being required for graduation beginning in 2020? No opinion given.

f. Kids should not have additional testing during PARCC.

g. CEF grant of $9,299.55 for H.S. science department was added to action items.

7. Other Items

a. Board noted and thanked those who gave donations

b. Board member urges district to find money for another school psychologist within the 2.35% budget increase.

c. Shared services agreement approved with the Borough of Chatham for construction improvements to the WAS driveway and parking lot in an amount not to exceed $110k.

community news