Kingston City School District Superintendent Paul Padalino described a summer school program that proved both popular and successful with students, as he gave an update on the on the subject during a meeting of the Board of Education earlier this month.
The K-3 summer school, under the direction of Principal Emily Clausi, operated from July 11-July 29 at Chambers Elementary School with an enrollment of around 230 students.
“We had many partners in every one of our summer schools, but here we had Hudson Valley Reptiles and KHS (Kingston High School) mentors,” Padalino told school board members at a, August 3 meeting. “It was fully staffed with social workers, school psychologists, ENL (English as a New Language) teachers, and bilingual family workers. And the curriculum was our core areas…but we also had art, music PE (physical education), and social-emotional learning.”
Padalino added that the program used American Rescue Plan funding to extend the school day, “to make sure that we’re hitting those goals around closing the gap in learning loss, as well as providing those social-emotional supports for our students.”
The students with disabilities summer school program at Ernest C. Myer Elementary School began on Wednesday, July 6 and runs through Wednesday, August 17. With 140 students enrolled, Padalino said, there are 12 teachers in the program, with 22 teaching assistants, five therapists, and Principal Lynda Corey.
Padalino said that due to Myer being one of the “warmer” schools in the district, there are portable air-conditioning units in every classroom with students when the temperature rises.
“We want to make sure that we’ve got everything in place there so our students can continue getting what they need and what their IEP (Individualized Education Program) requires them to have,” Padalino said.
The grades 5-8 program served around 175 students at M. Clifford Miller Middle School from July 11-July 29 under the leadership of Principal Cameron Smith. Partners included the Cornell Cooperative Extension, Peaceful Guardians, Wild Earth, and Family of Woodstock. Padalino said the program was fully staffed with social workers, school psychologists, ENL teachers, and bilingual family workers.
The Summer 9 Academy for 9th graders had its largest number ever at 70, also running from July 11-July 29. The program had a mathematics and ELA (English-Language-Arts) focus, with community partners including Family of Woodstock, Go Beyond Greatness, Wild Earth, the Kingston Police Department, and the Youth Ensemble Theatre.
“Our Agriculture Club at the high school also worked with our students,” Padalino said.
The summer school program for grades 10-12 runs from Tuesday, July 19 through Monday, August 15, with Regents exams held on August 16 and 17. Padalino said he believed there would be at least seven, and as many as 11 students in the high school program picking up their diplomas at the summer graduation ceremony scheduled for Monday, August 29.