FCSD is Back to Business for 2018-2019

Ninth graders celebrate their first time walking into the high school as freshmen.
File photo

FULTON, NY – The 2018-2019 school year is well underway for the Fulton City School District.

According to Superintendent of Schools Brian Pulvino, instruction began in classrooms within minutes on the first day of school last week.

Districtwide, just more than 3300 students attended first days throughout the first week of school from grades pre-kindergarten through twelfth, a lower number than opening day last year.

To help those first day jitters, first day programs were put in place for students transitioning into new schools throughout the district.

New this year, a day dedicated to incoming seventh graders deemed “7-Up” helped ease the transition from the district’s four elementary schools to the Fulton Junior High School.

“It was a good way to introduce our students to each other, our staff, and our Junior High School,” Pulvino said.

Similarly, “Freshmen First Day” served as a transitional day for incoming freshmen at G. Ray Bodley High School while all pre-school and kindergarten students with their parents attended orientation days and practice bus runs to introduce the young students to the district.

All six district buildings were prepared and ready for the start of the 2018-2019 school year, including the move of several administrative offices from the Fulton Education Center to the Fulton Junior High School as per a new lease agreement with CiTi BOCES.

“We maneuvered through the typical transitional glitches like normal. All in all, we’re off to a very good start,” Pulvino said.

An abundance of new opportunities and initiatives are available this year in the FCSD.

Utilizing a $1 million grant, a new Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Math (STEAM) after-school program will be available for students in grades fourth through sixth, extending on themes and opportunities provided during a recent two-week summer camp held with funds from the same grant.

The district’s Digital Learning Initiative providing one-to-one use of tablets for students is continuing implementation with all students in grades kindergarten through eighth grade already in possession of tablets as high school students will receive tablets in the coming weeks.

New this year, the early college high school program is underway with roughly 30 students participating in its first year under the direction of Sean Broderick.

District officials are continuously looking at safety and security measures to ensure building safety. New building entrance practices and security programs will be implemented during the first months of school.

Also new this year, all students throughout the district can receive free breakfast and lunch through the Community Eligibility Provision under the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010.

The district board of education, superintendent, and stakeholders will continue working on the Strategic Coherence Plan with a release date for implementation in January 2019.

“The plan will really pull everything together and focus on all stakeholder voices. It’s essential in ensuring that our five-year plan works,” Pulvino said.

However, what most excites Superintendent Pulvino for the new school year is providing greater opportunities for teaching and learning in Fulton.

“We will continue to focus on our targeted goals and progress monitor what we’re doing internally to help us prosper,” he said.

With several opportunities to see students perform in athletics, open houses, extracurriculars, and several others, Pulvino suggests utilizing the calendar on the district website to keep up with what’s going on throughout the district.