Skip to content

Fort Plain schools honor veterans at assemblies

‘They did a really nice job of elevating the importance of who a veteran is and what they’ve done.’

elementary student hands a veteran a small gift in a school gymnasium
Harry Hoag Elementary School students gave veterans a small token of appreciation during an assembly on Nov. 8.

Fort Plain Central School District celebrated our local heroes in honor of Veterans Day during assemblies at both schools on Friday.

Harry Hoag Elementary students learned about who a veteran is, and the history of Veterans Day and the song “Taps.” They sang patriotic songs and gave tokens of appreciation to the veterans in attendance.

three seventh graders show the proper way to fold an American flag in a school auditorium
Seventh graders demonstrated the proper way to fold an American flag.

At the Jr./Sr. High School, the band and choral group Harmony performed, and Brad Niles’ students showed the proper way to fold an American flag. Students gave a presentation about the White Table, a military tradition that serves to honor those who are no longer here to celebrate. Interim Superintendent Kathy Dougherty also unveiled a memorial of an engraved stone beneath the flag pole at the school entrance. It reads, “To Our Men and Women in the Armed Forces – Past, Present and Future – We Thank You. In Memory of Many, In Honor of All.”

Dave Prahst, who gave 22 years of service to the Air Force and National Guard, attended both assemblies.

“It’s really special and I appreciate it,” he said. “I especially appreciate that the recognition comes from our youth. They did a really nice job of elevating the importance of who a veteran is and what they’ve done.”

Jr./Sr. High School students Rachel and Ian Zuppardi said they were honored to recognize their parents Kaeriis and Jason.

“It’s important for us to remember what our parents have done for our country,” Rachel said.

First graders write letters, hold collection drive for veterans

They collected pens, puzzle books, personal care items and candy.

eight first grade students stand behind a table filled with donated items such as pens, candy, puzzle books and personal care items
From the left are first graders Kyle Christman, Kinsley Page, KataLenah Clapper, Eric Williams, Tyrone Burnside, Isley Ruszkowski, Quinn Hisert and Oliver Parkinson

First graders and their teachers Kyra Gallup, Caitlin Baker and Ashley Bargstedt recently completed a service project in honor of Veterans Day. The children wrote letters to service men and women, both retired and active duty, through Operation Gratitude. They also held a small collection drive to collect items for the care packages that Operation Gratitude sends overseas. 

STEAM class builds future-ready skills

Lessons in Jade Van Gorder’s class are reinforcing why it’s never too early to start tapping into your potential.

three students seated on the floor of a school hallway watch as a catapult launches a marshmallow pumpkin
Fourth grader Blake Lapi, right, watches as Paige Lochner, left, and Sophia Brownell test their catapult in their STEAM class.

Harry Hoag Elementary School student Austin Cassford said maybe he’ll be an architect someday, or an engineer. At the very least, he has a head start on learning how to balance a checkbook, to work on a team and to be a creative problem solver.

“I’m learning important skills for when I’m older,” he said.

teacher and student kneel on the floor of a school hallway while using a tape to measure the distance between a catapult and a marshmallow pumpkin
Fourth grade teacher Jade Van Gorder uses a measuring tape to see how far Cristopher Quiroz-Romero’s catapult launched a candy pumpkin.

These are big thoughts for a fourth grader. But the STEAM lessons in Jade Van Gorder’s class are reinforcing why it’s never too early to start tapping into your potential.

“If kids start tapping into their spatial intelligence and start developing these skills at a young age, they may discover abilities that they never knew they had,” Van Gorder said.

Science, technology, engineering, and math—or STEM, as it is known in education circles—are rapidly growing fields of study. STEM has evolved to STEAM, with increasing recognition that artistic creativity is an important element of engineering design and problem-solving.

Van Gorder’s STEAM class recently had students designing and building functioning catapults made out of popsicle sticks. When the catapults were completed, students took turns launching marshmallow pumpkins through the hallway. Students were given the option to participate in a friendly competition to see whose would go the furthest.

students kneeling on floor in school hallway while launching a catapult made of popsicle sticks
Elijah Smith, left, and Caleigh Bartholomew test their catapult.

Student Alexa Conley won, but she had to learn that success doesn’t always happen on the first try.

“The first catapult I made broke, so I took it one step further and added rubber bands, because you really want the catapult to go back as far as it can,” she said.

Embracing failure is an important part of developing a growth mindset. Students are learning how to bounce back from failure and to keep trying.

“The children have to know going into any project, that their first design may not be a complete success,” Van Gorder said. “With a growth mindset, it helps them embrace challenges or a failed attempt and move forward with a positive attitude.”

Students are also learning that they’re apt to be more successful if they collaborate and work together. For most projects, Van Gorder gives students the option to work individually or in teams.

“We wanted to work together because it gets the job done faster, and to have someone to lean on if you’re having a hard time,” Caleigh Bartholomew said of her partner Elijah Smith.

Other projects in the class have challenged students to build various structures, like the strongest bridge or tallest tower. First, though, they had to earn fake money so they could purchase materials by working their way through math problems.  They had to deposit their earnings into their personal checkbooks and then “buy” materials.

“I’ve always loved the idea of incorporating STEAM challenges into my lessons, as it not only helps to engage the children, but also fosters collaboration and encourages innovative problem-solving,” Van Gorder said. “It’s been a real hit!”

Drama Club auditions, workshops & Behind the Scenes sign-ups

The Fort Plain-Canajoharie Drama Club is gearing up for the production of Les Miserables. There are a variety of ways that students can get involved.

Behind the Scenes

Interested in joining Drama Club, but don’t want to be on stage?  Join us for Behind-the-Scenes Info Night on Wednesday, Nov. 6 at 6:30 p.m. in the auditorium at Canajoharie High School. Come and learn about technical jobs related to lights, sound, props, costumes and set crew. Sign up to be a part of this year’s show! Questions? Contact Mrs. Broady at 315-867-5234.

Audition Workshop

Do you want a leg up on Les Miserables auditions? Do you want to do some fun improvisation exercises? Are you ready to meet your new cast and crew members? Come out for the annual audition workshop Thursday, Nov. 14 at 6:30 p.m. in the auditorium at Canajoharie High School.

We will do some exercises that will help students learn to “Act Sing” – to show their emotions and tell a story in song. That is what they will need to do for this show!

See Mr. Ryan or contact Mrs. Broady at 315-867-5234 with questions.

Auditions

Auditions will be held Wednesday, Nov. 20 or Thursday, Nov. 21 at 6:30 p.m. in the auditorium at Canajoharie High School. Auditions are open to students in 7th-12th grade from both schools. Attend one night only.

You will rehearse a song from Les Mis – you do not need to come prepared with your own song.

Questions? See Mr. Ryan or text Mrs. Broady 315-867-5234.

Posted on Categories District News

Community survey open for Fort Plain superintendent search

The brief, anonymous survey seeks input regarding the characteristics and personal attributes desired of the next superintendent, and what opportunities and challenges they will face.

The Fort Plain Central School District Board of Education is seeking community input through an online survey to help inform the upcoming search for a new superintendent of schools.

The brief, anonymous survey seeks input regarding the characteristics and personal attributes desired of the next superintendent and what opportunities and challenges they will face. The survey, which will be open until Nov. 30, can be accessed at www.surveymonkey.com/r/FortPlainSurvey.

All members of the school community, including residents, parents, students and staff are encouraged to take the survey.

HFM BOCES District Superintendent David Ziskin, the former Fort Plain superintendent, is working with the Fort Plain Board of Education as a consultant during the search process. As part of their statutory duties, BOCES district superintendents may be asked by component school boards to act as consultants during superintendent searches. Dr. Ziskin will work with the board to create recruitment material and assist with the development of selection criteria and a process for interviews.

BOCES will begin advertising the position in mid-December with confidential interviews expected to begin in March. The Board of Education’s goal is to have the next superintendent in place by summer.

The Fort Plain Board of Education is seeking a new district leader to replace Ziskin, who left the district in July to assume the district superintendent’s position at BOCES. Fort Plain is currently under the direction of Interim Superintendent Kathy Dougherty.

Legal Notice – School budget vote and elections

LEGAL NOTICE

NOTICE OF BUDGET HEARING, BUDGET VOTE AND ELECTION
FORT PLAIN CENTRAL SCHOOL DISTRICT

To the qualified voters of the Fort Plain Central School District, Fort Plain, NY: NOTICE is hereby given that the Public Hearing on the School District Budget for the 2018-2019 school year will be held in the Harry Hoag District Office Conference Room on Wednesday, May 2, 2018 at 7:00 p.m.

AND FURTHER NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN that the Annual District Meeting and Election of the qualified voters of the Fort Plain Central School District will be held in the Harry Hoag School Gymnasium in said District on Tuesday, May 15, 2018 at which time said vote and election will be held between the hours of 1:00 p.m. and 9:00 p.m., prevailing time at which time the polls will be opened to vote by voting machine upon the following items:

Proposition 1: To adopt the annual budget of the School District for the fiscal year 2018-2019 and to authorize the requisite portion thereof to be raised by taxation on the taxable property of the District.

Proposition 2: Authorization to Purchase Buses:  Shall the Board of Education of the Fort Plain Central School District be authorized to:  (a) acquire school vehicles at a maximum aggregate cost of $230,000.00; (b) expend such sums for such purpose; (c) expend from the Bus Purchase Reserve Fund an amount not to exceed $230,000.00 for such purpose; (d) levy the necessary tax therefore, to be levied and collected in such amounts as may be determined by the Board of Education taking into account state aid received and amounts disbursed from the reserve fund; and (e) in anticipation of the collection of such tax, to issue bonds and notes of the District at one time or from time to time in the principal amount not to exceed $230,000, and to levy a tax to pay the interest on such obligations when due?

Proposition 3: Authorization for Increase in the Library Tax Levy:  Shall the annual appropriation to support and maintain the Fort Plain Free Library be increased by $5,000 to $80,000, which sum shall be separate and apart from the Fort Plain Central School District annual school district budget and be raised annually by a tax upon the taxable property of the school district, and which appropriation shall be the annual appropriation for the library until changed by further vote of the electors of the school district, and such tax shall be levied and collected yearly as are other general taxes and such monies paid over to the trustees of the Library?

To elect two (2) members of the Board of Education to a three (3) year term commencing on July 1, 2018 and expiring on June 30, 2021 to succeed Jami L. Stevens and Mary Beth Hudyncia whose terms expire on June 30, 2018.

AND FURTHER NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN that petitions nominating candidates for the office of member of the Board of Education shall be filed with the Clerk of said School District at his office in the Harry Hoag School not later than April 16, 2018 between 7:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. Each petition shall be directed to the Clerk of the District and shall be signed by at least 25 voters of the District, and must state the name and residence of the candidate.

AND FURTHER NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN that applications for absentee ballots will be obtainable between the hours of 7:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. Monday through Friday, except holidays, from the District Clerk. The District Clerk must receive completed applications at least seven (7) days before the election if the ballot is to be mailed to the voter, or the day before the election, if the ballot is to be delivered personally to the voter. Absentee ballots must be received by the District Clerk not later than 4:00 p.m., prevailing time, on Tuesday, May 15, 2018.

A list of persons to whom absentee ballots are issued will be available for inspection to qualified voters of the District in the office of the District Clerk on and after May 14, 2018 between the hours of 7:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. on weekdays prior to the day set for the annual election and on May 15, 2018, the day set for the election. Any qualified voter present in the polling place may object to the voting of the ballot upon appropriate grounds by making his/her challenge and the reasons therefore known to the Inspector of Election before the close of the polls.

AND FURTHER NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN, that the qualified voters of the School District shall be entitled to vote at said annual vote and election. A qualified voter is one who is (1) a citizen of the United States of America, (2) eighteen years of age or older, and (3) a resident within the School District for a period of thirty (30) days immediately preceding the annual election. The School District may require all persons offering to vote at the budget vote and election to provide one form of proof of residency pursuant to Education Law Section 2018-c. Such form may include a driver’s license, a non-driver identification card, a utility bill or a voter registration card. Upon offer of proof of residency, the School District may also require all persons offering to vote to provide their signature, printed name and address.

AND FURTHER NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN, that pursuant to a rule adopted by the Board of Education in accordance with Sections 2035 and 2008 of the Education law, any referenda or propositions to amend the budget, or otherwise to be submitted for voting at said vote and election, must be filed with the Board of Education at the Fort Plain Central School District on or before April 16, 2018 at 4:00 p.m., prevailing time; must be typed or printed in the English language; must be directed to the Clerk of the School District; must be signed by at least twenty-five (25) qualified voters, or five percent (5%) of the registered voters of the District who voted in the previous annual election of Board members, whichever is greater; and must state the name and residence of each signer.  However, the School Board will not entertain or place before the voters any proposition if its purpose is beyond the power of the voters or is illegal, or any proposition requiring the expenditure of moneys which fails to include specific appropriations for all such expenditures required by the proposition.

Post navigation