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Staying Connected: Your Stories - June 25, 2020

Connections in Education during the Coronavirus Crisis

As educators navigate unprecedented obstacles with limited resources and guaranteed uncertainty, New York State educators lead the nation in their acceptance of this challenge. Throughout our state, administrators, teachers, and school personnel have demonstrated their extraordinary dedication, support, and commitment to their students and our children. From teacher parades for students to food and technology deliveries for families, New York’s educators have risen to this challenge! The New York State Education Department wishes to highlight the exceptional dedication of our educators with examples of emotional support, equitable solutions, and instructional practices utilized to stay connected with the students of New York State during this period of building closures. Read more below for stories that have been shared with us recently, or, if you have your own stories to share, please visit our Submit Your Stories page for additional information.

Honoring the Class of 2020 

Salamanca City Central School District prints vinyl banners for every member of the Class of 2020 

The Board of Education knew that we had to recognize our graduates in a huge way!  With the help of computer graphics design teacher Kim Dry and school support staff Billie Breazeale, the district began printing the banners and sewing each together to be hung on utility poles along Broad St in Salamanca. 

With the blessing of the City Department of Public Works and Mayor Michael Smith, our building maintenance staff were quick to respond, gathering brackets and mounting the banners! 

If you have a moment and would like to get out of the house – take a leisurely drive down Broad St. in Salamanca, NY.  From Cleo St (near Marino’s Pizzeria) down to Fern Ave (the Plaza) all of the Class of 2020 banners are hung for all to see. Each banner is double sided so be sure to drive the opposite way you came to catch the other side.

Thank you to Kim Dry and Billie Breazeale who took time sewing and printing each banner, and a huge thank you to our maintenance staff who spent the last couple days hanging each banner up. 

#Classof2020 #WarriorNation #SalamancaProud

Senior Sendoff

St. John the Baptist Diocesan High School, West Islip

This spring, St. John the Baptist Diocesan High School in West Islip hosted a “Senior Sendoff”.  This event was arranged following Governor Cuomo’s announcement that New York State school buildings would remain closed for the rest of the school year.

Throughout the remote learning period, St. John the Baptist has remained connected with students and the school community.  During this time of year, the school’s 357 seniors would normally be participating in many special events and activities to celebrate the end of their high school years.  Due to New York on Pause, St. John the Baptist seniors, like other high school seniors, will be unable to hold their special events as planned.  Consequently, the high school’s administration planned and coordinated a special parade for seniors on the school campus.

Students and their families decorated their cars in celebration of the Class of 2020 and drove through the school campus so they could see the school building, athletic fields, and other special places.  Students and families were greeted by Superintendent of Schools, Dr. Kathleen Walsh, Principal Biagio M. Arpino, other members of the administration and faculty throughout the campus route, which was a single file drive-by in accord with social distancing guidelines.  Each student was given a special sign created to acknowledge their accomplishments so they could place it on their front lawns in celebration. 

We’re giving honor and putting joy in the lives of the young people who so deserve it. They’re doing a wonderful job dealing with a difficult situation, and it’s a testimony to their families, to their community, and to the school they attend.
Dr. Kathleen Walsh, Superintendent of Schools

A correspondent from the Town of Islip was present, and the Town of Islip created this video about the event and placed it on their Town of Islip YouTube channel for all to see.

“This is the beginning of what we hope will be celebrations to highlight student accomplishments and continue the special bonds among the SJB family,” said Principal Arpino.  Dr. Walsh also recognized the students, stating “We’re giving honor and putting joy in the lives of the young people who so deserve it.  They’re doing a wonderful job dealing with a difficult situation, and it’s a testimony to their families, to their community, and to the school they attend.”

Together in Spirit

Monroe 2-Orleans BOCES

This video salutes the students and staff members as they face the unprecedented challenges of the Novel Coronavirus. It includes photos taken before schools were closed and photos and video from after the closure that demonstrate the connections that continue between students and staff.

Submit Your Own Stories

We encourage you to share your story. Your story might be a one-page account, a video, or even pictures showing us how your school, your students, and your community are staying connected. Please visit our Submit Your Story page for additional information.