Katonah-Lewisboro Sets Intentions for New School Year
The middle school theater was full of energy and excitement on September 3. It was Opening Day—the day before the first day of classes—when educators and administrators gather in order to step into the new year together.
As teachers found their seats, they enjoyed a slideshow of highlights from the previous school year. They also created a thank you video for the district’s support staff—a surprise shown to administrative assistants, bus drivers, custodians, monitors, and other support staff at a second Opening Day assembly later that morning.
Marjorie Schiff, president of the Board of Education, welcomed the gathering. “Katonah-Lewisboro teachers, tomorrow our students will be back in your classrooms. Thank you for all that you do.”
knowing each student well
Andrew Selesnick, Superintendent of Schools, set the tone for 2019-20: to nurture and support the unique strengths of each individual.
“This year, we give particular focus to knowing each and every student well,” said Selesnick. “We know that who the learner is makes a significant difference to how the learning happens best. If a child has a particular interest, skill, or life experience, and if we can connect their new learning to that particular interest, skill, or life experience, the new learning is FAR more likely to take hold.”
KL: A community that cares
"On opening day, we rededicate ourselves to our work.”
Mary Ford, Assistant Superintendent of Curriculum and Instruction, expanded on the district’s ongoing focus on social-emotional learning, sustainability, diversity, equity, and inclusiveness. She highlighted the enthusiasm with which many colleagues participated in book groups, technology training, and summer offerings on a variety of topics. “Surrounding all that we do is professional learning. We will always need to learn, grow and change in response to our students and the ever-changing world we all live in,” said Ford.
Chris Nelson, Director of Instruction, spoke about the ways technology will enhance the district’s learning environments in this coming year. “We want our students and educators to have access to the best tools and know how to use them well,” said Nelson. “We are committed to thinking critically and carefully about when and how to use them.”
Superintendent Selesnick affirmed the district’s commitment to engaging, relevant, active learning experiences. “We developed our Learning Commitment in 2016 and we believe its ideals are still the right ones to be striving towards today. We also recognize that the larger educational system and the world in which we live still present obstacles that challenge our progress towards those ideals. On opening day, we rededicate ourselves to our work.”