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Bubble Gum Brain: Students learn about the power of positive thinking

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Do you have a bubble gum brain, or do you have a brick brain?

Sixth graders in Paula Colvin’s guided reading group at the Harry Hoag Elementary School considered this question before they set their reading goals for the year. Why? Because attitude is everything.

Students are learning about having a growth mindset. People who have a growth mindset believe their abilities can be developed by working hard and persevering—brains and talent are just the starting point.

Students listened to a read-aloud of the book “Bubble Gum Brain” to help them learn about this way of thinking. If you have a bubble gum brain, you “chew” your thoughts, you can expand the way you think, and you understand that making mistakes helps you learn. If you have a brick brain, you believe things are the way they are, and they won’t change much.

Students practiced the growth mindset by rewriting brick brain statements into bubble gum brain statements. They also wrote lists of things they can do, and things they can’t do yet.

“It’s about changing your thinking from, ‘I can’t do this,’ to, I can’t do this yet,‘” sixth grader Chanel Jefferson-Frye said.

Colvin said it’s already working to change students’ minds about their abilities.

“I had a parent tell me their child was at home working on something and they were saying, ‘This is not impossible. I can do this,'” Colvin said.

FPHS students invited to College Fair, Financial Aid Workshop

FPHS students and their parents are invited and encouraged to attend a College Fair and Financial Aid Workshop. This event is annually hosted by the Tri-County Counselors Association.

What: College Fair and Financial Aid Workshop. Approximately 70 institutions (listed below) will be represented. The Financial Aid Workshop will also review the Excelsior Scholarship and will be presented by FMCC Financial Aid Coordinator Rebecca Cozzocrea.

Where: Fulton-Montgomery Community College, Route 67, Johnstown, in the Physical Education Building.

When: Tuesday, Sept. 17. The College Fair will be held from 6-7:30 p.m. The Financial Aid Workshop will be held from 6:30-7 p.m.

Participating Colleges:

  • Albany College of Pharmacy
  • Alfred University
  • Allegheny College
  • Bryant University
  • Canisius College
  • Castleton University
  • Cazenovia College
  • Champlain College
  • Clarkson School
  • Clarkson University
  • College of St. Rose
  • Elmira College
  • Endicott College
  • Florida Institute of Technology
  • Franklin Pierce College
  • Fulton Montgomery Community College
  • Hartwick College
  • Herkimer County Community College
  • Hilbert College
  • Houghton College
  • Hudson Valley Community College
  • Ithaca College
  • Johnson and Wales University
  • Keene State College
  • Keuka College
  • King’s College
  • LeMoyne College
  • Manhattanville College
  • Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts
  • Mildred Elley College
  • Mohawk Valley Community College
  • North Country Community College
  • Paul Smith’s College
  • Plymouth State University
  • Roberts Wesleyan College
  • Rochester Institute of Technology
  • Sage Colleges
  • Schenectady County Community College
  • St. John Fisher College
  • St. Lawrence University
  • SUNY Adirondack
  • SUNY University at Albany
  • SUNY Alfred State
  • SUNY Brockport
  • SUNY Buffalo State College
  • SUNY University at Buffalo
  • SUNY Canton
  • SUNY Cobleskill
  • SUNY Cortland
  • SUNY Delhi
  • SUNY Empire State College
  • SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry
  • SUNY Fredonia
  • SUNY Geneseo
  • SUNY Morrisville State College
  • SUNY New Paltz
  • SUNY Oneonta
  • SUNY Oswego
  • SUNY Plattsburgh
  • SUNY Polytechnic Institute
  • SUNY Potsdam
  • Union College
  • University of Connecticut
  • University of Maine at Orono
  • University of New England
  • University of New Haven
  • University of Rhode Island
  • Utica College
  • Wells College
  • Western New England College
  • Westfield State University
Posted on Categories Archive

Free meals for all students in 2019-20

ALL students – regardless of their family status or income – enrolled in both buildings of the Fort Plain school district can receive both breakfast and lunch for FREE thanks to the Community Eligibility Meal Certification option for the school year.

There will be no free/reduced meal forms circulated.

Any questions can be directed to Lauri Broady in the Office of School Nutrition at (518) 993-4000, ext. #1003.

Posted on Categories Archive

The Canajoharie-Fort Plain Drama Club Present Newsies

The Canajoharie-Fort Plain Summer Drama Club will present the Broadway musical, “Newsies” on July 26th at 27th at the Fort Plain High School.

Based loosely on the newsboys’ strike of 1899, “Newsies” tells the story of Jack Kelly and his gang of struggling newspaper hawkers in New York City, selling copies of the NY World on the streets of Manhattan. When Joe Pulitzer suddenly raises the price that the newsies must pay, Jack galvanizes the other boys and girls to go on strike.

“Newsies” stars Christian Jones of Canajoharie in the role of Jack Kelly. His closest allies are Crutchie, played by Fort Plain’s Keagen Ford, Dacey who is portrayed by Alex Gyurik of Canajoharie, and Les who is played by Faith Clark of Fort Plain. They are joined by fellow newsies: Talia Narzymski, Chad Rogers, Jasmine Lapi, Payton Landry, Dawson Sweet, Michael Palmeri, Sadie Kersey, Nura Handy, Amelia Gallagher, Richard, Catarino, Vivian Nunez, Eliza Cechnicki, and Vienna Jackson.

The newsie chorus features Avery Merchant, Country Hammond, Lilly Lapi, Quinlan Forrest, Caleigh Bartholomew, Aileen Germond, Emery Frew, Brooke Jones, Natashia Hammond, Isis Hammond, Grace McFee, Amelia Hoag, Adeline Handy, Angelina Kersey, and Reanna Germond.

Along the way, Jack and his pals are helped out by their friend and theatre owner Medda (Jillian Rockefeller) and the reporter Katherine Plummer (Sarah Paradiso). They are up against the tough Joseph Pulitzer (Anthony Paradiso) and his office staff played by Jennifer Cechnicki, Kathryn McGowan, and Max Richtmyer. Having fun in the roles of “bad guys” are Kristy McFee (Snyder), Josh Cechnicki (Wiesel), Matt Ford & Michael Broady (The Delancey Brothers) and Matthew Summerfield (Cop). Filling out the remaining roles are Michael Hoffman (Nunzio/Stage Manager), Todd McFee (Mayor) and Mason Rogers (Roosevelt). The show also features guest dancers Samantha Barlow, Nathaniel Diamond, and Hailey Weaver.

The cast of 49 is led by director Lauri Broady and musical director Norma Bowley. Mike Broady serves as the sound director, assisted by Parker Forrest. Catherine Twitchell is the lighting director, with Robbie Rogers on the spotlight. The stage manager is Michael Hoffman, heading a crew consisting of Autumn Dodson and Selena Dumond-Halse.

“Newsies” will be performed at Fort Plain Jr/Sr High School on Friday night, July 26th at 7:00 p.m., with a matinee performance on Saturday, July 27th at 2:00 p.m. Admission is $7 for adults and $5 for seniors/children/students.

Students play on Unified Basketball Team at the New York State Special Olympics Summer Games

Isaiah Norton, Raul Rivera and Lisa Petty

Isaiah Norton and Raul Rivera were selected from Fort Plain to participate in the New York State Special Olympics Summer Games by playing on the Unified Basketball team representing the Capital Region. The team was put together by Jess Verrigini, the coach of the Amsterdam Unified Basketball team.

On Friday, June 14, the team traveled to Vassar College in Dutchess County for the games. On Friday night, they attended the opening ceremonies where the Olympic torch was brought into the stadium to begin the games by the New York State Troopers. The torch run started in Buffalo and was carried by community members throughout the state.

Saturday, June 15, was competition day, and the team won a bronze medal.

“I had a lot of fun that weekend,” Isaiah Norton said. “It was an experience I’ll never forget. I made friends with a lot of athletes. Most of all, I am excited about next year.”

Also joining Norton and Raul was Fort Plain’s Jr./Sr. High School Teacher, Lisa Petty. Petty is a New York State Certified Special Olympic Coach.

“I thoroughly enjoyed the entire Special Olympic experience,” Petty said.

Fort Plain Board Appoints New Interim Superintendent

Fort Plain's Interim Superintendent Kathy Dougherty
Fort Plain’s Interim Superintendent, Kathy Dougherty

The Fort Plain Board of Education appointed Kathy Dougherty as Interim Superintendent, effective July 15, at its monthly board meeting on Wednesday, June 12.

Dougherty replaces Fort Plain Superintendent David Ziskin, who was named HFM BOCES District Superintendent and Chief Executive Officer by the HFM BOCES Board of Education at its May 29 meeting

“I am extremely honored to be asked to serve as Interim Superintendent of the Fort Plain Central School District for the 2019-20 school year,” Dougherty said. “My meetings with the board and administrative staff have confirmed the district’s strong core values that are driving the district’s work.”

Dougherty is currently the Interim Superintendent of the Mayfield Central School District.

“The Board of Education is excited to have Mrs. Dougherty join the Fort Plain Central School District as Interim Superintendent,” said Board President Ronald Kardash. “With her extensive educational experience, Mrs. Dougherty will serve us well while we begin our search for the district’s next leader.”

Fort Plain will commence a search for a permanent superintendent in the fall, with a targeted start date for the spring or summer of 2020.

Dougherty began her career as a music teacher in Gloversville, Johnstown and Oppenheim-Ephratah school districts. She was principal of the Pleasant Avenue Elementary School from 2000 to 2007, and then served as the superintendent of schools at Northville from 2007 until her retirement in 2012.

Since retiring from Northville, she has served as interim principals at the Park Terrace Elementary School in Gloversville and the HFM BOCES Adirondack Academy. She was also an independent Danielson teacher evaluator for the Edinburg school district.

Mrs. Dougherty is a graduate of Onondaga Community College with an associate of applied science degree in music. She graduated summa cum laude with a bachelor of music degree from Syracuse University, and she earned her Master of Science degree in educational administration from the University at Albany. She completed the superintendent development program at SUNY Oswego in 2006.

“It is a privilege to follow Dr. Ziskin in the superintendent’s seat, and I look forward to being a part of the tradition of excellence that is a hallmark of the Fort Plain Central School District and the community,” said Dougherty.

Ziskin is set to begin his official duties with HFM BOCES on Aug. 5.

Dougherty and her husband, Doug, live in Johnstown and have two children: a daughter, Erin, who lives in Ohio, and a son, Patrick, who lives in Maryland.

Mr. Heiser’s Team Tech Group Tackle ‘Summer Slide’

students working on creating a website

Students in Mr. Heiser’s Team Tech group participated in a State Wide Technology contest. Students were tasked with coming up with a solution to improve equity in education through the use of technology.

students working on a website

Team Tech tackled the issue of the ʺSummer Slideʺ. The ʺSummer Slideʺ is when students don’t participate in academic settings over the summer and regress in their learning and are often unprepared for the next school year. Team Tech created a website that gives all students information about free and low-cost programs that are educational right here in our community!

student writing

Kids stayed in Mr. Heiser’s computer lab for two days designing and creating the website and then presented via the SMARTBoard to principals, administrators from across the state. Their hard work and dedication granted Team Tech third place!

You can view their website here:

Fort Plain Spring Sports Reception and End of Year Awards

NYSPHSAA “School of Excellence”-  Sixteen (16) of seventeen (17)- Varsity Sports had a 90 average for 75% of the team members. Western Athletic Conference Mohawk Division Scholar Male Athlete- Bryce Thibodeau

Softball: WAC Mohawk Division MVP– Michaela Stockwell
WAC 1st Team All-Stars- Jenna Reese (OESJ- Fontana LaCoppla); 2nd Team- (OESJ-Abby Johnson)
Second Effort- Jenna Reese
Most Valuable Player – Michaela Stockwell
D’Arcangelis Super-Sub Award- Faith-Araya Rende

Girls Track & Field: Second Effort- Cheyanne Wahl
Outstanding Track- Molli Bates
Outstanding Field- Quinn Jones
Outstanding Track & Field- Sarah Florian
Noah Fredericks Memorial Senior Track Award– Quinn Jones
Roland Littrell Jr. Memorial “Love of Running” Award– Sherry Huang
Rich Bower Memorial Track & Cross Country Award– Sherry Huang

Boys Track & Field: Second Effort- Howie Kelley
Outstanding Track- Mekhi Lanier
Outstanding Field- Hunter Logan
Outstanding Track & Field- Joe Le Moine
Noah Fredericks Memorial Senior Track Award– Patrick Murphy
Roland Littrell Jr. Memorial “Love of Running” Award– Seth Wintermute

Baseball: WAC Mohawk Division Co-MVP– Troy Butler
WAC All-Stars– Bryce Thibodeau, John Cortese, Brady Fureno, Nate Buley, Josh Nellis
Second Effort- Dawson Nare
Outstanding Pitcher- John Cortese
Defensive Player- Jaxson Yacowenia
Most Improved- Taylor Gifford
D’Arcangelis Super-Sub Award- Jalen Hall
Shannon Fureno Memorial Baseball Award– Josh Nellis
Rich Bower Memorial Baseball Awards– Bryce Thibodeau & Brady Fureno
Bo Baker Memorial Award- Highest Batting Average– Troy Butler (.530)

Board of Education Senior Sportsmanship Awards– Quinn Jones & Jalen Hall

Carol Christie Mancini Memorial Cheerleading Award– Quinn Jones
Jane Karker Memorial Cheerleading Coach’s Award– Jasmin Rouse

Coaches Most Improved Girl Award (Gr. 9-12) – Cara Porter
Coaches Most Improved Boy Award (Gr. 9-12) – Troy Butler

Board of Education Outstanding Underclass Girl– Michaela Stockwell
Board of Education Outstanding Underclass Boy– Brady Fureno

William Doerrer & Son Outstanding Senior Girl– Emily Abrams
William Doerrer & Son Outstanding Senior Boy– Jaxson Yacowenia

A Message From the Fort Plain Superintendent

To the Fort Plain Community,

Almost four years ago I had the good fortune to be chosen to serve as superintendent of the Fort Plain Central School District. Over that period of time, I’ve learned that the Fort Plain community, students, faculty/staff, and Board of Education collectively form an exceptional school district. I am very happy at Fort Plain and would be content to spend the remainder of my career here as superintendent.

However, a unique opportunity that I did not expect became available this year. The decision to apply for a new position was one I wrestled with because I have great affection for the Fort Plain students, staff and community. After months of contemplating pursuing the opportunity, I made the decision to apply and recently accepted an offer to assume the position of District Superintendent/Chief Executive Officer at HFM BOCES. My formal appointment is scheduled to occur on May 29. I will assume the position in August.

I am proud of Fort Plain, our school, and the work we have engaged in over the past four years. The Board, faculty, and staff are on a path that truly benefits our students. I assure you that it took a truly exceptional opportunity to lure me from Fort Plain.

It has been an honor to serve the Fort Plain Central School District as superintendent. I will always be proud of our work and grateful for the opportunity.

Very warmly,

Dave Ziskin

HFM BOCES Announcement 

Fort Plain Board To Meet in Special Session

FORT PLAIN – The Fort Plain Central School District Board of Education will meet in Special Session on Wednesday, June 5, 2019, in the Ronald H. Thibodeau Conference Room at Harry Hoag School.

The agenda is as follows:

  • Call to Order at 6 PM
  • Pledge of Alliegence
  • Executive Session
  • Public Comment
  • Adjournment

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