We want your news! Send us: News release |Letter to the Editor | Share a picture | Newborn | Birthday | Engagement | Wedding | Other Milestone
Today







The Gardens at APW Continue to Benefit Local Food Pantries

Submitted by the APW school district

Joining Toni Pugliano’s Science, Society and You class are students in Janet Campbell’s Biology class for a little weeding in the community garden. The gardens were relocated from their spot near the transportation department to a sunny location near the science classrooms, due to the capital project construction in and around the High School. Students in Eric Lanious’ photography class took the weeding opportunity to snap a few photos of the students at work.

Joining Toni Pugliano’s Science, Society and You class are students in Janet Campbell’s Biology class for a little weeding in the community garden. The gardens were relocated from their spot near the transportation department to a sunny location near the science classrooms, due to the capital project construction in and around the High School. Students in Eric Lanious’ photography class took the weeding opportunity to snap a few photos of the students at work.

Students in Toni Pugliano’s Science, Society and You class at Altmar-Parish-Williamstown (APW) High School have continued to care for and nurture the community garden begun last year when the APW Educational Foundation awarded a grant to the science department that covered the initial start-up costs. The grant provided funds for lumber for the raised beds, indoor lighting, and other gardening essentials. Students in George Parker’s technology classes at the high school constructed the raised bed planters and created stakes for the plants. Now in its second year, the gardens were moved from their spot near the transportation department to a sunny location near the science classrooms due to the capital project construction in and around the high school.

Pugliano hopes to expand the gardens project to include other classes and this year students in Janet Campbell’s Biology class joined with the Science, Society and You class to work in and use the garden as their “extended classroom”. Eric Lanious’ photography class documented the garden’s growth through photos and next year plans are in the works for Cristina O’Hara’s art club students to paint garden scenes on the compost barrels used by the gardeners to help them blend better into the garden space.

The students are using the garden to study the science of plant growth, organic methods of soil enhancement, organic pest prevention and have used the garden as an extended “science lab” moving the science of the classroom into real-world applications.

Last summer, the garden was maintained by student volunteers and volunteers from the transportation and maintenance departments at the high school.  The produce harvested was distributed to the local food pantries and various churches in the APW district.

APW Students Participate in Earth Day Cleanup in Their Community

Students at Altmar-Parish-Williamstown High School spent several hours working to clean up nearby Riverside Cemetery in Altmar recently in recognition of Earth Day and as part of the community service component of their Social Studies 12 – Economics and Participation in Government class taught by Steve Prusack.  Students in the class included: Scarlett White, Dan Smith, Benji Clark, Liberty Tanner, Hannah Flanagan, Britt Kimber, Zach Matthie, Brien Disbro, Alysia Schreyer, Erica Guenthner, Tricia Thorp, Taylor Britton, Britt Sikora, Don Sanderson, Nate Graham and Tyler Weaver. The annual clean up has been a part of community service at the school since shortly after the first Earth Day was held on April 22, 1970. Other area clean up activities are also scheduled with students from other classes at the school.

Students at Altmar-Parish-Williamstown High School spent several hours working to clean up nearby Riverside Cemetery in Altmar recently in recognition of Earth Day and as part of the community service component of their Social Studies 12 – Economics and Participation in Government class taught by Steve Prusack. Students in the class included: Scarlett White, Dan Smith, Benji Clark, Liberty Tanner, Hannah Flanagan, Britt Kimber, Zach Matthie, Brien Disbro, Alysia Schreyer, Erica Guenthner, Tricia Thorp, Taylor Britton, Britt Sikora, Don Sanderson, Nate Graham and Tyler Weaver. The annual clean up has been a part of community service at the school since shortly after the first Earth Day was held on April 22, 1970. Other area clean up activities are also scheduled with students from other classes at the school.

APW Middle School Students Learn to be “SAF KIDS”

APW Middle School Students Learn to be “SAF KIDS”

             Students in APW Middle School’s Family and Consumer Science Classes were recently visited by Kristi Taylor and Nikki McDermott, staff members from Oswego County Opportunities Services to Aid Families (SAF) Program. Taylor and McDermott were there to educate and inform students about many of the different aspects of abusive relationships. The three part “SAF Kids Domestic Violence Prevention” program covered everything from the red flags and warning signs of abusive relationships, to communication and problem solving skills. Differences between normal relationships with everyday ups and downs and unhealthy abusive relationships were also pointed out and discussed.

Because of the popularity of social networking sites like FaceBook and MySpace and the increasing use of text and instant messaging, there was time allotted during the program to cover how these newer forms of communication can lead to problems and maybe even contribute to abuse. Students were encouraged ask questions and interact with Taylor and McDermott keeping them interested and engaged throughout the presentation. Students were provided with information about the community resources available should they ever need help or support in dealing with an abusive relationship.

OCO SAF staff member Kristi Taylor helps APW 7th Graders Jasmyn Phillips and Josh Hart prepare to act out a skit during a domestic violence prevention presentation in Mrs. Ruffels Family and Consumer Science class.

A-P-W Students Rally to Support Make-A-Wish Foundation

The giant-sized stocking was not large enough to hold all of the Santa letters written by students at Parish Elementary School (PES), they needed two overflow boxes to contain them. The students wrote letters to Santa as part of Macy’s Department Stores “Believe” campaign which contributes $1 for every letter received at the stores to the local CNY Chapter of the Make-A-Wish Foundation. Pictured with the Santa letters in front is: Brittany Karboski (left) and Jillian Mueller (right). In back, left is: Cindy Mueller, a parent volunteer who has coordinated the Altmar-Parish-Williamstown School District letter writing campaign, and PES Principal Michael McAuliff.


Students at Parish Elementary School (PES) in the Altmar-Parish-Williamstown (APW) School District rallied behind the Make-A-Wish Foundation (MAW), and in the process must have developed writer’s cramp with all of the letters they wrote.

Cindy Mueller, a parent volunteer who collected the letters from the school will deliver them to Macy’s along with others she collected from other schools in the district as well as schools in neighboring districts who have joined with APW to support MAW. Macy’s Department Stores will donate $1.00 to the Make-A-Wish Foundation for every Santa Letter received in their stores during the Believe campaign in December, up to $1 million dollars.

Mueller’s own family was granted a wish by MAW in 2008, following her son Mike’s treatment for Ewing’s Sarcoma. Mueller has organized the Letters to Santa campaign since moving to the district three years ago, and told the students how appreciative she is of their generosity and support for this worthy cause, saying, “I cannot thank you enough for your efforts. Families like mine and families like Brittany’s are thankful for all you have done.” Brittany Karboski is a student at PES undergoing treatment for cancer who will be eligible for a wish from MAW. Brittany and Mueller’s daughter Jillian were on hand to help with the collection of the letters, as each student in the school brought their letters to the front of the room and dropped them into the giant stocking. As more and more letters were added, the stocking filled up and letters had to be moved into two large cardboard boxes to make room for the remaining letters.

Money raised by the local Macy’s Department stores will stay in Central New York to help grant wishes for children living in the area. It takes approximately $6,500 to grant the average wish, and while there is not a final total yet for what the APW District has raised, they are certainly doing their part to help grant a wish.

Altmar Concert a Treat for the Senses

The fourth grade students at Altmar Elementary School (AES) enjoyed their song “Nuttin’ for Christmas,” during the AES Holiday Concert. The students performed two separate performances, one during the day for students, teachers, family and friends, and another evening performance for a packed house. The Sights, Sounds and Scents of Christmas was this year’s holiday concert theme.

Jazzy Jinglers provided entertainment between class changes during the Altmar Elementary School Holiday Concert. Four member of the group read excerpts from the book “The Polar Express,” as the fourth grade class took their place on the risers. Pictured in front, left to right are: Hannah Comstock; Abigail Babcock; Jacob Smith, with book; and Kody Haywood.

Nova Kowalski was the guest soloist at the Altmar Elementary School’s (AES) Holiday Concert during the Kindergarten’s song “Silver Bells.” Nova is a fourth grader at AES in the Altmar-Parish-Williamstown School District.

“The Sights, Sounds and Scents of Christmas,” the delightful title of this year’s Altmar Elementary School (AES) Holiday Concert, was a treat for the senses and audiences were left with a gift of Holiday Spirit following the packed performances. AES Principal Denise Penoyer welcomed those attending the concert and thanked the many individuals who worked to produce this year’s holiday musical extravaganza. Custodian Deral Stevens, music director, Gil Lopez and Jazzy Jinglers director Krista Alsworth, were just a few of the many responsible for the thrilling holiday treat. From the magical holiday backdrop created by AES Art Teacher Donna O’Hara, to the beautifully decorated auditorium and overflow seating area in the cafeteria, the school was transformed into a winter wonderland of sights and scenes of the holidays. Artwork, colorful lights and decorations lined the walls and windows in the two rooms and a large video screen was set up in the cafeteria area where hundreds more seats were available to view the production which was broadcast live via a video setup that gave every seat in the house a perfect view of the performance.

The students, beginning with the Universal Pre-Kindergarten classes with their star-themed selections sang delightful songs such as “Star Light, Star Bright,” “When You Wish Upon a Star,” “Twinkle, Twinkle Christmas Star,” before ending their performance with a round of “We Wish You a Merry Christmas.”

Between performances a cast of Jazzy Jinglers including: Anna Mullin, Jessica Wiggins, Tori Ware, Emily Sampson, Kody Haywood, Jacob Smith, Hannah Comstock and Abigail Babcock, entertained the audience with charming readings and informative narratives about the Christmas season.

The Kindergarten classes’ carol of the bells featured “Bells Are Ringing,” “Ring, Ring, Ring the Bells,” “Hear the Jingle Bells,” and ended with “Silver Bells” and a splendid solo by fourth grader, Nova Kowalski.

Santa was the focus of the first graders performing “Must Be Santa,” “O’ Little Town of Bethlehem,” and “Santa is Coming,” as their life-size Santa artwork looked down from the walls of the auditorium with jolly St. Nick faces.

Second graders crafted beautiful lace-work snowflakes that perfectly illustrated their songs “Marshmallow World,” “O Come All Ye Faithful,” and “Suzy Snowflake.”

The Third grade’s theme – gifts, began with the favorite “Nuttin’ for Christmas,” and added “Toyland,” and “Shepherds Came to Bethlehem.” Each student wore a beautiful hand-crafted necklace that they could give as a gift to a special someone in their lives.

Fourth graders took a turn toward the modern with their abstract artwork and their song selections starting with John Lennon and Yoko Ono’s “Happy Christmas,” followed by “Walking in the Air,” and finishing with the American Folk Song, “What Month Was Jesus Born In?”

Two concert performances were held; one in the early afternoon with many parents, grandparents and friends attending as teachers and fellow students watched each grade level perform their songs. The evening performance took place in front of a packed house and those attending were thankful for the overflow seating with a great view of the video screen. The additional seating allowed for more than 600 total attendees at the concert during the evening performance.

APW High School Science Program Receives ExxonMobil Grant

Pictured, left to right are: Eric Kranz, R.J. Davis, and Desiree Farmer, as they harvested tomatoes and peppers from the Altmar-Parish-Williamstown High School Community Garden earlier this fall. The students, in Toni Pugliano’s Science and Society class at the high school, are studying the science of plant growth, and organic methods of soil enhancement and pest prevention using the garden as an extended “science lab.” The ExxonMobile Educational Alliance Program and the Convenience Express in Parish, awarded the science programs at the high school a $750.00 grant to continue the science curriculum. Many local food pantries and members of the community were recipients of the produce grown in the garden at the school.

The Altmar-Parish-Williamstown High School Science Club is the recipient of a $750.00 grant from the ExxonMobil Educational Alliance Program. Convenience Express in Parish works closely with the Science Club at the high school and helps ensure the initiatives of this group are recognized for the continued enrichment of the students’ scientific experiences at the commencement level. The grant will be used to continue the development of the Gardens at APW, which is a relatively new addition to the science curriculum at the high school.

APW High School science teacher, Toni Pugliano along with her Science and Society class began the community garden last spring, and the aptly named “community garden” has benefited many in the APW area through distribution of the produce grown to local food pantries and service organizations.

The grant from the ExxonMobile Educational Alliance Program will help continue the community garden science study, which moves the science of the classroom into real-world applications.

APW Alumnus and Published Author Visits Parish Elementary School

Altmar-Parish-Williamstown alumnus and now published children’s author Jacqueline (Fitzgerald) Heistman came back to her hometown to share her book 'The Adventures of Tommy The Tailless Squirrel' with the students and staff at Parish Elementary School. Jacqueline is pictured above (left) with friend, fellow APW alumnus and PES fourth grade teacher Mary Faulkner and two students Vehjric Dupree and Kassidy Spoon.

Altmar-Parish-Williamstown alumnus and now published children’s author Jacqueline (Fitzgerald) Heistman came back to her hometown to share her journey and speak to students at her elementary school alma mater. Fresh off the press, but two years in the making, her book titled The Adventures of Tommy The Tailless Squirrel rings home a very important message about being a good friend to someone no matter what they look like on the outside. Parish Elementary School (PES) students were amazed when they learned that the inspiration for the book actually came from a tailless squirrel who visited her home in New Hampshire and that the story evolved through some creative imagining. When asked by some PES students what her advice would be for aspiring authors, Heistman said, “Don’t give up on your stories and no matter how young or how old you are never give up on your dreams.”

APW Middle School Students Sing at Crunch Game

Altmar-Parish-Williamstown Middle School students sang the National Anthem before a sold out crowd at the Syracuse Crunch Hockey game recently.

The Altmar-Parish-Williamstown Middle School students were shown on the scoreboard jumbo-tron as they sang the National Anthem before the start of the Crunch game recently.

A select group of Altmar-Parish-Williamstown Middle School chorus members sang the National Anthem before a sold out crowd at the Syracuse Crunch Hockey game held at the War Memorial recently. The district has participated in “Crunch Night” for several years where tickets are made available for students in the district for a certain home game. This year, the Crunch organization asked the Middle School if they would sing the National Anthem at the start of the game. MaryAnn House, music teacher at the middle school, held auditions to select the 30 students in grades 6-8 that would sing at the opening of the home hockey game. Members of the chorus included: sixth graders: Mariah Betts, Shanin Comtois, Sabrina Fields, Allayna Frank, Brittney Johnson, Emberlin Leja, Kaitlin Morey, Jasmyn Phillips, Tiffani Teller, Megan Waite, and Brianna Watkins; seventh graders: Jeri Barber, Riley Corcoran, Addey Kerr, Katie Lenhart, Katie Palmer, Emma Sheltra, and Mckenna Trumble; and eighth graders: Shania Comtois, Dylan Cowin, Lacey Lowalski, Renee Powis, Chenaya Renski, Rachael Thormann, Kyrsten Torkildsen, Kelsie Wilson, and Heather Wood. Afterwards, the students stayed with their families to watch the hockey game.

Parish Elementary Celebrates People As Reading Partners

Dressed in her pajamas, Librarian Sharon Amyotte (left), read stories to the families gathered on the rug in the library during the People As Reading Partners reading event held at Parish Elementary recently. Pictured in the photo with Amyotte are Brandie Polisse and her son, kindergartner Dante Polisse. PARP was a month-long reading event that featured a challenge to students by Principal Michael McAuliff to read more than 5,000 books.

March was National Parents As Reading Partners (PARP) month, a nation-wide campaign to encourage reading partnerships with school, family and community that fortifies reading habits and cements the necessary bond between home and school in the education process. Altmar-Parish-Williamstown School District’s Parish Elementary School took the campaign one step further to encourage special people in a students’ life to read with and to them during the month and they offered a special evening to students and their families to help spark this month-long event.

The evening was filled with fun, educational, reading based activities for the young and old alike to do together. From quiet reading in the “rock and read” corner, competitive games involving letters and words on bingo cards to a fun book craft, there was something for every age and reading ability.

Students attending were able to select a free book to take home courtesy of the Parent Teacher group at the school and in the library the pajama-clad library staff read “bedtime” stories to the groups who snuggled with their family members among soft blankets and pillows.

Parents and children enjoyed the fun-filled evening that reinforced the importance of reading and the enjoyment and academic benefit that the whole family can get from reading together. Parents were given handout sheets that included tips to encourage their child’s reading to build a strong educational foundation as well as additional information about the month-long reading challenge at the school. During the month of March, students were asked to read at least 15 minutes per day with a special reading partner or family member and PES Principal Michael McAuliff challenged students to read 5,000 books. If they reached that goal, he told them he would dress up as a cowboy for the whole day on March 31st, to celebrate the end of the program.

APW Places Third in Winterguard Home Show

The recent Winterguard Home Show hosted by the Altmar-Parish-Williamstown School District brought together teams from all over the Central New York Region in a spectacular evening of entertainment. Blending, dance, drama and military precision, the Winterguard teams competed with one another for the top honors in the event. The performance by the APW team was a stunning theatrical production of Alice in Wonderland, featuring seniors Ashlae Harding as Alice, and Rebecca Lovelace as the Mad Hatter. The APW team earned third place honors in their division for their spectacular performance. Pictured are the members of the APW team, front row, left to right: Ashlae Harding as Alice; and Rebecca Lovelace as Mad Hatter; 2nd row: Briann Bristol; Mary Cronk; Taylor Fletcher; Toni Bush; and Angel Cutler. 3rd row: Andrea Priest; Jenna Cramer; Lisa Hopkins; Morgan Sobtka; Maggie Cooper; Lyn Xedis; and Samantha Giamella. 4th row: Mara Mensch; Sarah Fletcher; Katie VanAuken; Mariah Betts; and Ashley Cleveland. Coaches for the team (not pictured) are Danielle Wert, Lynn Booth, Melinda Horning, and Gary Smith.

Search Our Archives:

Cortini’s and Cleaners Collaborate to Collect Coats for Cold Kids

A coterie of Fulton school children will have cozy winter coats thanks to two local business owners and the generosity and kindness of the community. Joe Cortini, owner of Cortini Shoe Zipper Canvas Repair and Jeanne McManus, owner of Ontario Star Cleaners have teamed up with Fairgrieve Home and School to collect, clean, repair and distribute gently used coats, hats and mittens to students in the district.

Continue reading


New Operating Hours for Solid Waste Transfer Stations Will Begin in January

Beginning Jan. 1, Oswego County solid waste transfer stations will be open four days a week. All of the transfer stations will continue to be open Saturdays from 8 a.m. to noon. Weekdays hours are 7:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Continue reading


Health Department Announces Clinic Schedule for Week of Dec. 1

The Oswego County Health Department is offering influenza immunization clinics for people age 19 and older weekdays at the Nick Sterio Public Health Clinic, 70 Bunner St., Oswego.

Continue reading


The Manor To Host Program for Alzheimer Caregivers

Community members caring for those with Alzheimer’s are invited to attend a free three-part program to be held December 3, 10 and 17 at 4 p.m. at The Manor at Seneca Hill in the ground floor conference room. This series is designed to provide caregivers with the knowledge, tools and strategies needed to cope with a diagnosis of Alzheimers or related dementia.

Continue reading


Leighton Read-A-Thon Winners Named Principals Of The Day

The Leighton Elementary School recently held its annual Read-A-Thon. Participating students set a goal of at least 240 minutes of reading over a 10-day period. Students tracked their reading from in and out of school.

Continue reading



v3_2014_64