Important Announcements

  • BOARD OF EDUCATION MEETING

    There will be a Board of Education meeting on Tuesday, October 24, 2017 at 6:30 p.m. in the School Library.  It is anticipated that the Board will immediately convene into  Executive Session to discuss the employment history of a particular individual.  Sleepy Hollow High School will be presenting to the Board of Education.  To view the agenda, go to the Board of Education tab, click on BoardDocs and Enter Public Site.

    Pocantico Hills Central School
  • A Letter to Our Community from the Superintendent Regarding Recent Events

    Dear Pocantico Hills Community Members,

     

    Like many Americans, I have been deeply troubled by the tragedy that has unfolded over the last several days in Charlottesville, Virginia.  As a parent and an educator who cares deeply for students in our community and across our state and nation, I am reminded how critically important it is that we all unite in denouncing hateful rhetoric and violence, and reaffirm our commitment to building an equitable and inclusive future for our children.

    Adults and children alike struggle to process and understand what has transpired, evoking a range of emotions, including fear, anger, confusion, and frustration.  As parents and educators, we have a responsibility to respond to questions that young people are asking, helping them to understand what they are seeing and hearing in a manner that makes them feel safe and hopeful.  By empowering our children through education to be informed and knowledgeable they will be ready to embrace the role they have in making the world a better place. 

    If you are looking for guidance in having these important conversations at home, the following links might be helpful…

    How To Talk To Your Kids About The Violence In Charlottesville

    Teaching Young Children About Bias, Diversity and Social Justice

    https://www.todaysparent.com/family/parenting/how-to-talk-to-kids-about-racism-an-age-by-age-guide/

    We are a community that embraces diversity and honors the rich racial, cultural, religious histories and identities of all our students, families, and staff members.  While we may not have all the answers for understanding and addressing injustices in the world, we as a school community have the resolve to do everything in our power to provide our children a positive climate that attends to race, culture, language, class, (dis)ability, gender, gender identity, sexuality, and religion of staff, families, and students. Our children deserve a world where love is stronger than hate, I look forward to our working closely together to make this our legacy.

     

    Sincerely yours,

    Carol L. Conklin-Spillane
    Superintendent of Schools

    cconklin-spillane@pocanticohills.org

    914.631.2440 x 703

    Superintendent
  • A Message to Our Community

    On behalf of our faculty and staff, I welcome you to the 2017-2018 school year. We are looking forward to a busy and productive year as we launch several new and exciting initiatives.  Pocantico Hills School District has a rich history, natural beauty and charm that makes it a uniquely wonderful place for families to thrive and children to grow socially, emotionally, physically and intellectually. Our goal is to personalize the learning experience for all children, building upon their interests and abilities to prepare them to be life-long learners, skilled communicators, able problem solvers and strong citizens. We are proud of all we do well and are committed to a culture of continuous improvement. I look forward to working with all residents to provide an exceptional educational experience for our children as they move through our system from their first day of pre-kindergarten to high school graduation. We want our school to remain the hub of the community for everyone who lives here, with residents and families enjoying our beautiful grounds and pool throughout the years.  

    With direction from our Board of Education, we have established priorities for the coming year that support the District’s vision for the future:

    • Implementing an organizational structure that provides clarity in roles and responsibilities, distributes leadership, and promotes collaboration through a team structure.
    • Developing a rigorous and comprehensive curriculum aligned with standards of excellence, providing expert consultants to develop curricula and build the capacity of our professional staff in reading, writing, mathematics, science, world languages, technology, physical education and social/emotional learning.
    • Reinventing our world language program in grades K-8 to connect with grade level content immersion in French and Spanish to make language learning a tangible, problem-solving experience that prepares our students to be global citizens.
    • Personalizing learning for every child, shifting from a deficit model of support to one of universal support for all students.
    • Strengthening communication with all District constituents.
    • Maintaining a safe, consistent, and developmentally appropriate learning environment.

    This calendar is filled with important information and highlights of all that lies ahead for the children of this community; we invite you to join us in making 2017-18 a great year and count on you to share your feedback and suggestions. If you have questions or concerns at any time, please give us a call or send us an email.

    Sincerely yours,

    Carol L. Conklin-Spillane
    Superintendent of Schools

     

    Superintendent
  • DRAFT District Safety Plan - A Message to the Community

    Annually school districts are required to develop a District-wide Safety Plan in accordance with the Safe Schools Against Violence in Education Act.  This document represents our commitment to providing a safe and secure environment for our students, faculty, staff and visitors.  The attached draft is available for review in advance of the public hearing which will be held during the Board of Education meeting on Tuesday, August 29, 2017.  On the agenda for this same meeting, following the hearing, is adoption of this plan for the 2017-18 school year.  The public is welcome to submit comments on this draft plan in advance of the hearing.  Please send comments to the attention of our Assistant Superintendent for Business and Operations, Mrs. Mimi Heslin at mheslin@pocanticohills.org.

    Pocantico Hills Central School
  • An Important Message from the Superintendent

    Dear Parents,

     

    A lot of attention is being paid to the new Netflix series called "13 Reasons Why" which was based on a novel about teen suicide. Many teens have been watching this or may want to watch it as it has become very popular. The series highlights many of the current issues that our children struggle with such as gossip, rumors, social media and sexual assault.   Teens and pre-teens are bombarded with subtle and overt messages on these and related issues from many sources, which can result in confusion, worry and fear.  It is worth talking about these stressors at home so you can reassure your child and help them navigate their world with confidence. This series may or may not be appropriate or of interest to you and your family; but the advice holds true for any such resource.  It is recommended that you watch it first or with your children so you know how to have discussions about it.  You can reach out to our school counselor for additional information on how best to discuss difficult topics with your children.

     

    Here is a link to an article highlighting some concerns with this series that can be incorporated into discussions with your teens if they are watching it.

     

    http://700childrens.nationwidechildrens.org/13-reasons-parents-concerned-netflix-series/#.WO_yYvuq9uM.facebook

     

    Sincerely,

    Carol Conklin-Spillane

    Superintendent

    Pocantico Hills CSD

    (914) 631-2440 x703

    Pocantico Hills Central School
  • An Announcement from the Superintendent

    A New Way to Pay for Student Meals and Services Online

    We are excited to offer Pocantico Hills Families the opportunity to use  MySchoolBucks®, an online payment service that provides a quick and easy way to add money to your children’s meal account using a credit/debit card or electronic check.  The system is up and running and available for immediate use in the cafeteria and for After Care Program payments. We plan to use this for Camp payments as well.  You will be able to view recent purchases, check balances, and set-up low balance alerts at no extra cost.  Listed here is a summary of what the program offers and how to enroll.  We hope you find this new service helpful.

    MySchoolBucks provides:

    • Convenience - Available 24/7 on the web or through our mobile app for your smartphone
    • Efficiency - Make payments for all your students, even if they attend different schools within the district.  Eliminate the need for your students to take money to school.
    • Control - Set low balance alerts, view account activity, recurring/automatic payments & more!
    • Flexibility - Make payments using credit/debit cards and electronic checks.
    • Security – MySchoolBucks adheres to the highest security standards, including PCI and CISP.

    Enrollment is easy!

    1. Go to www.MySchoolBucks.com and register for a free account.
    2. Add your students using their school name and student ID.
    3. Make a payment to your students’ accounts with your credit/debit card or electronic check.

    A program fee may apply.  You will have the opportunity to review any fees and cancel if you choose, before you are charged. 

    If you have any questions, contact MySchoolBucks directly:

    Pocantico Hills Central School
  • Attention Parents of incoming Pre K and new incoming Kindergarten Students

    For information on registering your child, please click here.

    Pocantico Hills Central School
  • Board Room Project

    Would you like to help us with the Board Room project by donating school memorabilia?  Click here for more information.

    Pocantico Hills Central School
  • District Academic Intervention Plan

    The New York State Education Department is requiring that school districts develop an AIS policy for the 2016/2017 school year. This policy must include a second measure and must be uniformly applied to all grade levels. Please see attached for more details.

    Pocantico Hills Central School

CURRICULAR RESOURCES

At Pocantico Hills, we are committed to the belief that all children have incredible growth potential and that we must do all we can to extend, nurture, and inspire them within the school and beyond. To us, the quality of a child’s classroom experiences is more important than scores on standardized tests, and our collective goal every day is to enrich our students’ lives beyond the standards set by the State.

As part of their everyday engagement with the curricula, students should be actively applying and bridging essential skills, thinking deeply, making connections, asking thoughtful questions, seeing relationships, collaborating, and communicating. We should be modeling and developing flexibility, creativity, and innovation, as well as productive habits of mind so students can excel in the world around them.  Our Guiding Principles and Essential Skills frame our thinking for this important work and are embedded in all our decisions.

Thanks to the community’s support, we have many resources at our fingertips, and we are always working to embed them in our instruction. We realize that the world around us is changing more quickly than ever before, and we have a responsibility to thoughtfully and systematically prepare our students for all the demands and challenges ahead.

In addition to the overviews you see below, we have also posted curriculum outlines for our major subject areas.  While these are always works in progress, they provide an insight into the units, topics, and skills that are explored and developed at each grade level.   Please see our teachers’ class pages for more information and links!

English Language Arts

Math

2013-2014 marked the first year implementing our new K-6 math program, Primary Mathematics.  This “Singapore Math” methodology focuses on developing deep number sense in the early grades utilizing the “concrete” (use of objects or manipulatives) –“pictorial” (diagrams and other visual models) –“abstract” (numbers and symbols) approach.  Students begin at an early age developing their mathematical reasoning, number sense, problem-solving, and communication skills in a hands-on and interactive manner.  Discussions highlighting how students “see” problems differently or use different strategies to find answers are common in our classrooms.  Throughout the grades, it is important to know that emphasis is placed on conceptual understanding and not just procedural fluency.  Beginning in 7th grade, instructional resources include Big Ideas Math, and in 8th grade students have the option of taking Common Core Algebra I.  As in the earlier grades, conceptual understanding and problem-solving skills are always emphasized.

Science

Not only do we utilize the Science 21 curriculum K-6 – a hands-on, investigation-based program developed by Putnam/Northern Westchester BOCES and used by over 60 districts - but our teachers provide valuable feedback and participate in Science 21 summer curriculum writing.  Much of the site is password-protected for subscribing districts.  One link below is to the Manual for Administrators (it is public on the site), which provides an overview of the program.

Our science program in 7th and 8th grade is a foundational curriculum exploring general science, earth science, physical science, and life science concepts.  Into 8th grade, students will be given the option of intensifying their studies to prepare for the Living Environment Regents.

Social Studies

We use a variety of resources to teach social studies at Pocantico Hills.  In K-6, our primary resource is the Integrated Social Studies/ELA curriculum developed at Putnam/Northern Westchester BOCES by teachers in the region including our own.  In addition, all of our teachers, regardless of grade level, utilize additional resources such as inquiry modules to build units and lessons tailored to their students’ interests and needs.  In 7th and 8th grade, the primary textbook is America:  History of Our Nation.