Pleasant Street School News

building a community of learners that strive for excellence

August 30, 2015

Welcome Back!

It is with tremendous excitement that we start a new school year at Pleasant Street and in the Athol Royalston Regional School District. It is truly wonderful to see all of your children back at school and to welcome some new faces. The building just doesn't seem right without classrooms full of busy and inquisitive children.

This year marks my fifth year in the district as principal and my last year at Pleasant Street School! Next school year we will open the doors to our beautiful, brand new, state of the art Athol Elementary School!! As we prepare to combine Pleasant Street School, Riverbend, and Sanders Street Schools the district administrative team will be busy planning and preparing for that transition throughout this school year. Great attention and care will be given to not only the building project specifics- brick, mortar, and design- but also ensuring that teaching and staff assignments are made to insure the best possible people are in place within grade level positions and roles. The word "synergy" comes to my mind and as will look to create a learning environment where the sum total is far greater than the individual parts.

At school years end, when we close the doors at Pleasant Street, Riverbend, and Sanders Street Schools, the district will undoubtedly look to the community and to consider ways to honor and to celebrate the occasion. These respective schools have been a source of rich history within our community with grandparents, parents, and now their children all sharing a part.

There is so much more that I could say as we move forward into this new school year about our curriculum work, learning expectations, and the many ways we are teaching children to think at higher levels, but I will close with some final more personal thoughts. As my son went off to college a week ago and his absence is felt within the Ellis household in a thousand different ways, I want to challenge families to be truly present in your children's lives each day. Everybody says it, and it is completely true, your children will grow up too fast! So while they are young take the time to listen, to ask questions, and to celebrate in all of their little successes and challenges. Sit down and share meals together apart from the distractions of televisions, computer screens or phones. As parents and guardians we have tremendous influence in our children's lives and in their approach to school, to problem solving, and to setting goals for their futures. Set high expectations and your children will meet them!

Warm regards,

Principal Ellis

Snapshots from the first few days of school!

Second graders getting to know one another

Who has the longest hair? Who has the shortest hair? Who has green eyes? Who has a pet that is not a cat or a dog? These questions and more were answered as our second graders were busy with clip boards finding out information about their classmates.

Farewell Ms. Morin, Thank you for your service!

Just prior to the start of the new school year we received word that Mikaela Morin, one of our first grade teachers, was relocating and leaving Pleasant Street! Ms. Morin has been a wonderful teacher for our school district for the past 18 years. It is so hard to say goodbye! An unexpected opportunity presented itself and while it was a tremendously difficult decision for her, it was one that she needed to make for her family. On behalf of Pleasant Street School and the Athol Royalston Regional School District we wish Ms. Morin (Thurber) very well in her future endeavors. Undoubtedly, she will continue to enlighten and to inspire youngsters as she continues her career in teaching.

Mrs. Coleman in action in first grade!

Mrs. Coleman is a familiar face at Pleasant Street having worked as our special educator for students in kindergarten through grade 2. She is very talented and is licensed as an elementary education teacher, a special education teacher, and as a reading specialist. With the need to open school with a teacher in place Mrs. Coleman graciously stepped in to first grade until a hiring process could be completed. The school district has posted for both the first grade position and our special education position that was left vacant with Mrs. Coleman's transfer. Following a review of applicants we will decide the direction we want to go on filling the position so that we have the right fit within respective roles.

Survey says...

Mrs. Heuer started the year off in third grade having students weigh in on some oh so important questions! A fun activity but also one that represents important mathematical thinking and discussion as children learn to analyze and talk about survey data.

Back to School Playground Party Was a Big Hit!

It was fabulous to see so many families turn out for our back to school playground party on August 19th! How wonderful to meet new members of our school community and to see our returning students after the summer break. With all the sunshine and fresh air so many of our Pleasant Street friends looked a lot bigger than they did when they left in June! Please click on the link below to see a short video with more pictures from this event. It seems Principal Ellis was visiting more than taking pictures as there were so many people she missed on camera.

Our School District is Now Offering Free Breakfast & Lunch!

As part of the 2010 Healthy and Hunger-Free Kids Act, Athol-Royalston Regional School District, along with other districts, will begin offering free meals to all students this school year. For parents, that means no more forms to fill out, no online meal account to remember, no last minute scramble for change before the bus, and no more lunchboxes to pack. All students can eat for free!

For more information on the the free breakfast and lunch program including requirements for selecting meals versus ala cart items please click on the link below:


  • Breakfast menu for September
  • Lunch menu for September

Summer learning!

Dear Families,

Please remember to send in your summer reading lists and your summer calendar math packets. We will be celebrating students for their efforts. We also welcome pictures, projects, or other artifacts you may want to share that reflects one of the many adventures in summer learning that you had with your children. We will be displaying submissions in our school lobby during the month of September.

Community Events & Postings

Do you have news to share or want to inform members of our school community about family friendly events in our area? if so, please email or forward a flyer or link.

Thank you :)

United Way of North Central Massachusetts-20th Annual Day of Caring is September 17th.The United Day of Caring is an amazing event that mobilizes the power of volunteers from local companies and community residents. Hundreds of volunteers along with 2,000+ local school students unite for the common cause of completing important projects for local non-profit agencies. Their collective work creates an immediate and meaningful impact on the community.

The Day of Caring begins with kick-off breakfast at 7:30 a.m. at the DoubleTree by Hilton followed by the enthusiastic volunteers dispersing to their project locations. These dedicated teams of volunteers work from 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. to complete their projects. After their hard work, they are rejuvenated at the Day of Caring Barbeque held at the Polish American Citizen Club (PACC) on West Broadway in Gardner immediately following project wrap-ups at 2:00 p.m. Great food, lively music and door prizes make it the perfect end to a day of unity, fellowship, community impact and fun!

The Nurturing Program will be offering a new class for parents starting in September 2015. Space is limited so please click on the link below to find out more about how you can be involved in this opportunity.

Big Brothers/ Big Sisters Program is enrolling children for the 2015-2016 school year program. They serve children in the Athol/Orange area with transportation provided from Riverbend and Butterfield Schools. Please click on the link below for more information about this program and how you can be involved.

September 2015 edition of the Common Thread, community newsletter of the North Quabbin Community Coalition

For other local events, happenings, and resources in this area... you can also check the North Quabbin Community Coalition website below:

These are not school sponsored events but are posted here as a public service for families in the greater North Quabbin community.

Upcoming Events...Mark your Calendars!

Upcoming Events and Dates!

  • August 31- First day for kindergarten and preschool programs
  • September 4- no school- Labor day break
  • September 7- Labor day holiday no school
  • September 23- District half day, noon dismissal, lunch is served

Check back soon for more news!

News from Principal Ellis

Building a community of learners that strive for excellence