PRSD Pulse: Back to School Edition ✏️📚
Greetings Pearl River School District Families and Staff,
Welcome to the 2023-24 school year! As we reach the conclusion of the first week of a new academic year, I am grateful to have all PRSD students, staff and administrators back in our K-12 buildings. The smiles of both new and returning students, and the eager excitement of our educators, reflects our District’s strong school community and I feel honored to share in the many new experiences and opportunities that this upcoming school year brings.
Leading up to the first day on Tuesday, September 5, our summer academic programs, along with curriculum and instruction work, provided continued support for our students as well as the advancement of programs that will enhance our teaching and learning experiences. In addition, we had the opportunity to hire many new administrators and staff members for a variety of positions. These talented professionals have excitedly begun their new roles – adding diverse talents and skill sets to our exceptional team of professionals dedicated to our District’s missions and values.
As we embark on a fresh opportunity to grow and improve together, while continuing to do our very best work in supporting our students, I can’t wait to share all there is to come across academics, the arts and athletics.
Wishing all a successful school year…
Dr. Marco F. Pochintesta
Pearl River High School is a Best High Schools Winner
The Pearl River School District tops the charts! Pearl River High School was the only Rockland County high school to make the top 100 in New York State of U.S. News & World Report's annual list for 2023-24. Ranking #91 within New York State and #835 nationally, we've designated ourselves as a top-performing high school based on student performance on state-required tests, graduation rate and college readiness. It's because of our PRHS students, administrators, faculty and staff that we continue to 'believe we can achieve'...and do so! More on Facebook and Instagram.
First Day of the 2023-24 School Year
Learning is an adventure...that begins on the first day of school! We kicked off a strong start to the 2023-24 academic year in the PRSD on Tuesday, September 5 as we stopped into our K-12 buildings to capture an array of activities across subject areas and specials. Between unpacking and arranging school supplies, to ensuring locker accessibility, to learning policies and procedures of the classroom, to exploring all there is to offer in their new grade-level, District students hit the ground running. More on Facebook and Instagram.
Superintendent's Conference Days
"In just a few days, we will have the chance to experience renewal and inspiration as we begin a new school year. As we do every year, we will meet the future...in the faces, hearts and minds of the 2,300 students that the Pearl River schools serve." Addressing a full auditorium, Superintendent of Schools Dr. Marco F. Pochintesta spoke to all faculty, staff and administrators in attendance for Superintendent's Conference Days on August 30 and 31. Staff members engaged in school-wide meetings, department/grade-level discussions and classroom preparations – establishing goals and priorities, and receiving faculty input in order to prepare for the new academic year, as well as all students' return to our K-12 school buildings. More on Facebook and Instagram.
Grade 8 Orientation at Pearl River High School
The newest fleet of incoming PRHS Pirates arrived at Pearl River High School to attend Grade 8 Orientation sessions leading up to the start of the school year! Beginning with a warm welcome from Principal Dr. Robert Zegarelli and Assistant Principals Jacqueline Lividini and Aaron McCasland, eighth graders were introduced to their school counselors, the high school's policies and procedures, and bell and quarter schedules. Class of 2024 seniors then took small groups of students on building tours – showing classroom learning spaces, locating lockers and answering questions. More on Facebook and Instagram.
Grade 5 Locker Day at Pearl River Middle School
Exploring the fifth grade wing, practicing opening their lockers, and connecting with fellow students = a COMBINATION of fun! It was a full day of preparation for the start of the 2023-24 school year at Pearl River Middle School as incoming fifth graders located and decorated their lockers during Grade 5 Locker Day. With supplies and books in hand, PRMS Pirates had the opportunity to visit their school building and classrooms, review using their locker combinations, and drop off items in anticipation of the first day of school. More on Facebook and Instagram.
New Staff Symposiums
The PRSD hosted New Staff Symposiums, orientation sessions held at the District Administration Office that serve to onboard incoming new hires, from August 28-29. Beginning with a welcome address from Superintendent of Schools Dr. Marco Pochintesta, new members of our school community were introduced to the District through icebreaker introductions, bus tours to each K-12 building and informational presentations from each department. Administrators spoke with the group about district-specific curriculum focuses, community services, technology information and special education areas. New teachers and teaching assistants also connected with Board of Education members and building principals during breakout sessions. More on Facebook and Instagram.
Summer Learning Programs
The opportunity to learn never stops in the PRSD...even in the summer! We spotlighted our Summer Learning Programs – each serving to enhance the academic and curricular experiences of elementary, middle and high school students entering various grade levels based on their individualized needs. The Special Education Summer Learning Programs provided both elementary students entering grades 1-4, and middle and high school students in grades 5-8, with hands-on enrichment focuses in the areas of reading, writing and math. The AIS Summer Learning Programs provided students with extra help in order to succeed academically through enrichment opportunities in literacy and math supports. More on Facebook and Instagram.
The PRSD warmly welcomed a number of new administrators and educators over the course of the summer, who excitedly anticipated the start of their journey with us! Through our social media campaign, #HelloHires, our school community was introduced to the new faces joining us for the 2023-24 school year. At the administrative level, we welcome:
- Assistant Superintendent for Human Resources & Community Services - John Piscitella
- Assistant Superintendent for Curriculum & Instruction - Sue Pariot
- Assistant Superintendent for Business - Tawnya Muhlrad
- Director of Special Services - Joseph Simoni
- Coordinator of School Transportation - Tony Kcira
- Pearl River High School Assistant Principal - Jacqueline Lividini
- Interim Evans Park Elementary School Principal - Nadine McDermott
Each year, the PRSD excitedly gears up to welcome incoming kindergarteners, and their families, to our school community. As these little learners began to prepare for the transition to elementary school, the Pearl River School District held a Kindergarten Orientation session (June 12) for parents to learn about what to expect come September. We created a video that takes you through a 'day in the life' of our kindergarten students – capturing daily procedures, curriculum/instruction focuses, and the explorative learning that makes kindergarten such a fun and exciting place to be! Take a look...