OHES Paw Prints

Principal's Update - September 2019

Super Start to the School Year!

The children are back and we are pleased to let everyone know that the start to a new school year was awesome! The Kindergarten students arrived ready with brand new school supplies, eager to meet their teachers and new classmates. First graders are enjoying their full day that included adding Technology and Spanish to their related arts schedules. The second graders easily found their way to classrooms and love the idea of being the big kids with lockers in the hallways! It's going to be a great year with many new learning experiences on the horizon.

We are grateful to our PTA and the many volunteers that assisted children with finding their classrooms and buses during the first few days of school. We look forward to many volunteers continuing to be a part of our school community by helping out in the art room, media center and especially during lunch and recess.

Our Back-to-School Nights were well attended; it was so nice to meet our new families and welcome back our returning ones. Our BTSN presentation is available on our school website. There, you may reference information about our new homework practice, dismissal procedures and other important district wide information.

September was a super successful month and has passed by quickly. We look forward to a fun filled October as we kick off our Week of Respect, Book Fair and other schoolwide events. We look forward to joining our students and families at these upcoming events that foster our school community spirit!

Warmest regards,

Mrs. Kathleen Scotti, Principal

Mr. Dan Van Hise, Asst. Principal

Homework at OHES

As mentioned at our recent Back-to-School Night presentations, we are adopting a new practice at OHES regarding homework. The District Leadership Team (DLT) which is comprised of administrators, MTEA leadership and teachers, studied the research on this topic. Collectively, decisions were made regarding homework practices that were in the best interest of our students. Our School Leadership Team (SLT) developed the following belief statement about homework:

We believe that the primary focus of school should be cultivating a love of learning. In very young learners, research has shown that formal homework does not have a substantial academic benefit. At Orchard Hill, we believe that time should be used to read nightly, with adult involvement. In addition, we believe that children should have developmentally appropriate experiences that promote social and emotional growth. Some examples are: active play, participation in after school activities, crafts and family time. Due to these beliefs, Orchard Hill does not assign formal homework.

While formal homework won't be assigned, our teachers may be asking your child to contribute something from home for a special project or activity connected to classroom community. Additionally, our teachers will continue to utilize multiple platforms of communication to make sure parents stay up-to-date on classroom instruction.

School Picture Days

Children will have their school pictures taken on October 3 and 4. There will be PTA volunteers at school to assist the classes. Be sure your child brings their smile to school!

PreK/Kindergarten Morning Drop-Off

Parents of Preschool and Kindergarten students:

For safety reasons, when dropping off your child in the morning on the circle, please remember to wait until you reach the curb where a teacher is present.

Halloween Parades and Parties

Halloween Parades will take place on Thursday, October 31 at 10:00 am and 2:15 pm. Classroom teachers will inform parents if their class is participating in the morning or afternoon parade. Room parents will be in contact regarding classroom parties. Please remember to park in the main parking lot as the parade will take place in the bus lane in front of the school. Information will be posted on our school website.


Please follow these guidelines for students' costumes:

  • Costumes should be kept simple
  • Students should not bring any "extras" like wands, swords, or other handheld items
  • Students should be able to put on and take off their own costumes
  • Students should not wear masks that hinder their vision or costumes that hinder movement while participating in the parade
  • Any face painting should be kept to a minimum

Scholastic Book Fair Family Night

Tuesday, Oct. 15th, 6-8pm

OHES Media Center

Indoor Movie Night - A PTA Event

Friday, Oct. 18th, 5:30pm

Orchard Hill Elementary School

Check the PTA website for more information!

Emergency School Closings

In the event of inclement weather, hazardous road conditions or any other emergencies requiring the closing of schools for one day, phone messages will be used to notify families. You may also check the following.

  • Message Line: 609-466-7610
  • District Website: www.mtsd.k12.nj.us
  • NJ 101.5 FM
  • Channel 27 (Local Access Cable)

In the event of an emergency school closing, the 6-day rotation cycle will remain unchanged. For example, if there is an emergency closing/snow day on Day 1, the following school day will remain Day 2. Missed days will be made up later in the school year. Please refer to the district calendar for details.

Follow Us on Twitter!

There are many exciting things happening everyday at OHES. We will share these special events and learning that happens on Twitter. Please follow us for updates happening at OHES on Twitter at @MONTYOHES.