Many thanks to those who attended and/or contributed to the recent FLES celebration on May 12, 2011!
We are excited to share some feedback about the event, which was attended by around 100 people – a testament to the regard with which the program is held!
Among the attendees were retiring District Superintendent Debbie Kaplan and retiring Director of Curriculum and Instruction Marj Holderman, who were instrumental to the introduction of the program in the district. We made sure to acknowledge their contribution, as FLES is such a wonderful legacy to leave the children of Dobbs Ferry.
Doug Berry, current Springhurst Principal and incoming Director of Curriculum, described the positive impact of elementary language instruction on academic achievement, cultural awareness and self-esteem, and noted that the program would facilitate the acquisition of other languages later in students’ school careers. He explained that the dedication of 75 minutes per week per grade was considered best-in-class, and demonstrated the district’s commitment to the program by describing the hard work that had been necessary to incorporate FLES into the 4th grade curriculum.
Barbara Guglielmo, second grade teacher leader, was frank about her initial misgivings of the program, but went on to say how astonished she has been by what the children achieve in just 15 minutes each day. She gave credit for this to our wonderful FLES teacher, Jacqueline Laracuenta. Jacqui let her work speak for itself by showing a short video created for the program showing 2nd and 3rd grade classes in action.
The video will be posted on the district website as soon as it is available, and we will post it here. Please do check back soon.
It is truly remarkable what the 3rd grade students are already capable of, and the energy and enthusiasm that pervades each session of Spanish are there for all to see.
Finally, we are thrilled to report that the evening raised over $4,000 towards the Dobbs Ferry Schools’ Foundation’s FLES funding commitment. Beyond the financial aspect, this outcome speaks volumes about the regard with which this program is held in our community, and demonstrates the commitment of the community to ensure the longevity of FLES in our school district. For that, we could not be more grateful!