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Oswego Schools Return To Life for 2011-12 Year

OSWEGO, NY – It was a bit rainy and cold on Wednesday, prompting one teen to exclaim, “What happened to summer!?”

Teacher Kathleen Zerrahn escorts some of the new kindergarten students from their   bus to the lobby at Leighton where the youngsters joined their other new classmates
Teacher Kathleen Zerrahn escorts some of the new kindergarten students from their bus to the lobby at Leighton where the youngsters joined their other new classmates

Opening day of the 2011 – 12 school year quickly warmed up as returning students exchanged hugs and high-fives at all the schools in the district as friends were reunited after the hot and humid summer.

Mary Beth Fierro was helping solve some small problems for parents and students even before she got into the school Wednesday morning.

“There is a lot of excitement this morning and a few concerns as well, especially for some of the seventh graders,” the new OMS principal told Oswego County Today.

Fierro, who was principal at Riley Elementary last year, added she is looking forward to the new school year at OMS.

“I’m excited, just like the kids are,” she said. “We have a great staff here and a great bunch of students. I think we are going to have a real good year!”

“We’ve had a wonderful opening day,” said Fitzhugh Park Elementary Principal Donna Simmons. “In fact, we have registered some more students yesterday and even today.”

First grader McKinzie Partlow looks over the office counter as her parents brought her   to Leighton school to begin her Oswego educational experience.
First grader McKinzie Partlow looks over the office counter as her parents brought her to Leighton school to begin her Oswego educational experience.

She credited everyone involved with getting the school clean and ready for the returning students.

“We had a large entourage of people come out and meet the kindergarteners as they got off the buss and took them right to their classrooms,” she said. “We have a lot of new students in our school this year.”

The principal went around to each classroom to meet all the students and welcome them to as well as back to Fitzhugh.

While the weather outside was cold and dreary, “It’s warm and toasty inside Fitzhugh,” Simmons said. “The teachers gave the children tours of the school, including my office. It’s great to have the students return; it brings everything back to life.”

Students and staff at the elementary school promised to work hard – and have fun, she added.

At Oswego High School, Principal Brian Hartwell sets high standards.

Students head into Oswego Middle School on Wednesday as the new school year got under way.
Students head into Oswego Middle School on Wednesday as the new school year got under way.

“Things are going great,” he said of opening day. “We have high expectation here, starting with myself, for the staff and students. “Everyone has risen to the occasion.”

OHS offers a sound educational environment, which lends itself to optimal instruction and behavior, the principal said.

“We’re sticklers for ‘the little things.’ For example, we expect everyone to be on time. It’s been shown that those who tend to be on time enjoy a higher level of success than those who are late. It’s really quite simple. If you take care of the little things, the big things are much easier to manage,” he said.

Another one of the little things he encourages everyone, adults and students, to follow is treat everyone with respect.

The principal also encouraged the returning students to set goals for the new school year and write them down; that way they can refer back to them “and see what do I need to do every day to reach those goals.”

Kingsford Park second grade teacher Rosemary Ingersoll prepares to post “Welcome Students” on the bulletin board just outside her classroom as time ticked down for the arrival of children for the new school year.
<p>Kingsford Park second grade teacher Rosemary Ingersoll prepares to post “Welcome Students” on the bulletin board just outside her classroom as time ticked down for the arrival of children for the new school year.</p>

Hartwell said last year was a successful year.

“But, we can’t have that same year this year,” he pointed out. “We have to have a better year. I’m up for that challenge. And, I am sure our staff and students are, too!”

Construction at the high school is pretty much complete, according to the principal.

“It looks great. They did a very nice job,” he said.

Teacher James Hartmann has a new classroom this year. The third grade classroom was constructed over the summer as part of the capital project. The room was the main office at Kingsford Park Elementary School.
<p>Teacher James Hartmann has a new classroom this year. The third grade classroom was constructed over the summer as part of the capital project. The room was the main office at Kingsford Park Elementary School.</p>

 

Katherine Canales and Jason Zhang brought the lunch slips to the new office at the Charles E. Riley Elementary School and gave them to new principal Linda Doty.
<p>Katherine Canales and Jason Zhang brought the lunch slips to the new office at the Charles E. Riley Elementary School and gave them to new principal Linda Doty. </p>
Oswego Middle School students pour off the bus and directly into the building as the new school year commenced on Wednesday.
<p>Oswego Middle School students pour off the bus and directly into the building as the new school year commenced on Wednesday.</p>