Thursday, June 19, 2008

Summer Break

The blog counter shows the following for our two year total:

Total Visitors: 22,560
Total Hits: 35,389

And . . . I am relatively certain that the first person to check from a Woodbury school computer (going out over is the only one counted for that day. So -- the true number of visitors is much higher.

I am going to take a break. I do not anticipate any regular summer posts – but I do plan to return to the blog as we get closer to the new school year.

Enjoy your summer.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Graduation - Tonight, 6:30 p.m.

Congratulations to the Class of 2008!

Monday, June 16, 2008

Welcome, Summer 2008

Unfortunately, my New Year’s resolution did not work. Sound familiar? So, I grabbed for the dog’s leash this morning and figured I would give it a better try during these summer weeks. I know one thing – I am sure to do better than I did during the cold months of January.

I wish you an enjoyable summer. Hopefully, our Woodbury students will not only enjoy the break but be able to find opportunities for continued learning through time with family, travel to relatives, vacation opportunities, reading for enjoyment, and general fun.

We will be working hard this summer to prepare for another successful year. There will be facilities work, curriculum revisions, faculty training, and other procedural/management items to attend to so that the 2008-09 school year will be even better.

For me, this is the end of the second year of blogging. That time went very quickly. I cannot say that it is easy to post a blog item each school day, but I do enjoy the opportunity to share good news or simply communicate about a Woodbury Public Schools event in this manner. I plan to return to this blog at the beginning of the 2008-09 school year.

Enjoy your summer!

Friday, June 13, 2008

Thursday, June 12, 2008

In The News . . .

We just received the pictures from last week's NASA Space Camp presentation:

Morgan-Ashlee with her mother, father and the Lockheed Martin representative.

Morgan-Ashlee with her fifth grade teacher, Mrs. Meloni.

Also -- there is word that the Action News van (Channel 6) may be stopping by West End today to do a story on Mrs. Norris' first grade class and the correspondence between her students and a City of Philadelphia employee. More on that in tomorrow's post.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Heat Wave

The meteorologist say that a cold front came through last night – but the forecast is for 90-degree days for the balance of this week.

I wrote about our new geothermal system back on a cool day in May – and now we are living through this current heat wave. Then, I commented on how we were fortunate to have the cooling features associated with the geothermal. Now, with these near 100-degree days, everyone is on that same page -- happy to have this new HVAC system that was a product of the recent referendum.

Our schools have been able to go about in a “business as usual” mindset. The rooms are comfortable and learning activities can take place. As you know from the newspapers, any number of schools in the tri-state region are putting in special measures to cope with the heat that, in many cases, have included closing school early.

In the end, I am sure that we will pick up many days of improved instruction each year due to the new HVAC systems in the schools. It has been truly an amazing improvement in these older building to have been able to retrofit them with such modern equipment.

There are many in the Woodbury schools who are counting the days to summer break, but not because of excessive heat in the classroom.

Enjoy, this is the last Wednesday for students for the 2008-09 year – five more school days.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008


One of our fifth grade students, Morgan-Ashlee Backus, was surprised last Monday when representatives from Lockheed Martin entered her classroom to announce the winner of their annual Space Day Essay Contest. Morgan-Ashlee was awarded an all-expense paid parent/child trip to Space Camp in Huntsville, Ala. Both mom and dad were on hand for the surprise announcement!

Contest participants were challenged to write journals that vividly described life and work aboard the International Space Station for one year. More than 50 students from across Burlington County submitted essays, the top ten of which were later judged by Lockheed Martin employees.

Space Day is nation-wide educational initiative that promotes the importance of math, science and technology in the classroom. Celebrated on Friday, May 2, this year, more than 50 Lockheed Martin employees visited elementary and middle schools across Southern New Jersey to share the excitement of space exploration with more than 2,000 local students. The annual essay contest accompanies Lockheed Martin’s classroom visits and encourages students to learn more about space exploration.

Since its launch in 1997, the Space Day educational initiative has evolved into a massive grassroots effort with an international scope. The award-winning program involves hundreds of thousands of teachers and millions of students throughout the United States, Canada and beyond.

Congratulations, Morgan-Ashlee.

Monday, June 09, 2008

Home Stretch

This is the last full week of classes -- I am sure that the children have been keeping a close eye on this.

  • To accommodate a final exam schedule, we have early dismissal days starting Thursday for the Jr.-Sr. High School.
  • The elementary schools close out with early dismissal days beginning Friday.
  • Next Tuesday is the last day of school and graduation for the seniors. The graduation program will start at 6:30 p.m. and will be held at the high school football stadium (the gymnasium will be used if it is raining).

Thursday, June 05, 2008

Reading is Fun in 1st Grade at Evergreen

Ariel, the Little Mermaid…Junie B. Jones…Harry Potter…The Cat in the Hat…these were just a few of the very special characters who appeared in Mrs. Kalb’s First Grade classroom the afternoon of Friday, May 30 for a Reading Party Celebration.

In honor of the event, the students dressed up as their favorite storybook characters and took turns reading aloud to parents and Evergreen staff members attending the Reading Party.

And there are more pictures of the party on Mrs. Kalb's own class website -- Click Here.

Wednesday, June 04, 2008

End-of-the-Year Program for Staff

Yesterday, we had an end-of-the-year opportunity to get the entire staff together. We were able to review some of the important highlights of the year and to look ahead to areas of focus for the future.

At our program, we focused on recognizing individuals in the following categories:

  • Teachers of the Year
  • Perfect Attendance
  • Retirees
  • Additional Special Recognition

My favorite part of the event is hearing the stories about Woodbury from those introducing our retirees and from the retirees directly! I always enjoy the history of the school – whether it is hearing about it at this type of event or from my individual encounters with past employees, residents or our alumni.

Though I made reference to it at yesterday’s program, I want to point out that there are very new state expectations that no state/taxpayer funding goes to supporting an event that focuses on teacher/staff recognition. It is a bit of an odd expectation, but one that all school districts are struggling with as we deal with traditional events like the one we held yesterday. I would like to thank the Sunrise Senior Living (at Woodbury Lake) for donating the bottled water and cookies for the event. Also, our own lunch vendor, Nutri-Serve, provided the coffee and paper products. Thank you to each!

Thanks, also, for the volunteer services of our music trio – Dr. Joseph DiMenna, Jim Krauss, and Norwood Cuff! They set a welcoming mood for the opening of the program.

Finally, I would like to thank Janice Marrucci, Alysa Cummings, and Stacy Hoffman for the coordination of yesterday’s program.

Tuesday, June 03, 2008

Fundraising @ West End

(This entry was sent in by Mr. Myers, West End Principal)

Since 1994, millions of dollars have been raised in pennies and other spare change by more than 10 million elementary, middle and high school students throughout the country. The funds, collected during a designated three-week period, benefit The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. Everyone who participates is a winner!

Students across the country collected pennies, nickels, dimes and quarters during a special "Pasta for Pennies" campaign benefiting the Society. The West End School participated this year and raised $1,662.95.

In the Pasta for Pennies campaign, the class collecting the most change during the three week program received a pasta lunch provided by Olive Garden. By raising, $289.59, Mrs. Cremeen’s class won the pasta party lunch. Way to go boys and girls!

Monday, June 02, 2008

Evergreen at Underwood Hospital

Mrs. Platt, teacher at Evergreen Avenue Elementary School, and her class delivered seven quilts to Underwood Hospital. The students helped make the quilts during the course of this school year. Mrs. Platt reports that the quilts were donated to the pediatrics floor, and the nurses will be giving them out to patients.

Congratulations on the successful project!