Clarkstown Central School District

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  • Middle School Considering Book Study Topics

    Posted by Martin Cox at 9/19/2017

    Book studies in a school district provide opportunities for staff to grow as a learning community.

    During a recent visit to Principal Jon Schatz's office at Felix Festa Middle School, he discussed a variety of books to offer as a study for faculty and staff in all grades.

    "Festa is launching an exciting school year with messaging for our students: You are more than a name, or a face in the crowd," said Mr. Schatz.  "This is the time of your life."  

    Mr. Schatz stated, "In addition, we are focusing on middle-level education as a 'special' calling and the incredible dedication it takes to me a middle level educator."

    As a supportive tool, Mr. Schatz and his principal colleagues - Dr. Mitchell and Dr. St. John - seek to enhance and support the aforementioned messaging during the year via a variety of book studies.

    Called to the Middle by author Joseph Eidson is at the top of the list for Mr. Schatz, a book that focuses on the challenging work for middle school educators.

    "This will be used to celebrate and support the challenging work of middle school educators," said Mr. Schatz. 

    Another book for consideration, according to Mr. Schatz, is titled Teach Like a Pirate by Dave Burgess.  "It is a resource/tool book that will be used to increase student engagement and boost creativity," said Mr. Schatz.

    Lastly, Mr. Schatz also shared a third book titled The Innovators Mindset: Empower Learning, Unleash Talent and Lead a Culture of Creativity by George Couros.

    I wish the administrators, faculty and staff at Festa participating in book studies this school year a rewarding experience.

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  • Runners at South Cross Country Meet Honor "The Man in the Red Bandana"

    Posted by Martin Cox at 9/15/2017

    Ray Kondracki gathered the runners around him at Clarkstown High School South on Tuesday and pointed to the poles at the finish line.

    "I want you to look for the red bandanas attached to the poles when you cross the line today," the South Boys Cross Country Coach told runners from four schools.

    Coach Kondracki was referencing the red bandanas, as he told the story, to honor the life of a hero at the World Trade Center during the terrorist attacks on September 11,2001: Welles Crowther, a Nyack High School graduate, who during rescue efforts continued to go back into the World Trade Center to save lives.

    "While people were coming down the stairs, Welles Crowther continued to go up," said Kondracki of Crowther, referred to as The Man in the Red Bandana. "He was a real hero."

    Participating in the race in addition to the South Boys and Girls teams were runners from Tarrytown, Albertus Magnus and Nyack.  Several runners from Nyack High School wore red bandanas during the race in honor of Welles Crowther, an Investment Banker, Volunteer Fireman, and graduate of Boston College, where he was a member of the lacrosse team.

    During the race, both the South Boys and Girls teams finished first in their respective races. Jack Kantor (18:33), Robert Mwangi, Julian Saavedra, Jarius Thomas, and Michael Lamia finished in second through sixth place, respectively for South. 

    In the Girls Race, South took the top four spots with Keara Kotten (21:22) leading the way followed by Skylar Moreno, Maura Finnegan and Gina Ruotolo.

    Congratulations to all of the runners participating in the event, and thanks to Coach Kondracki for sharing with runners the story of an American hero, The Man in the Red Bandana.

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