Community & School News January 2018

Important School Dates
January 2 – School resumes after Winter Recess
January 9 – Catholic School Touring Tuesday
January 15 – Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day: schools closed
January 26 – Scoring Day for Public High Schools: high school students do not attend
January 28 – February 3 – Catholic School Week
January 29 – Chancellor’s Conference Day in Public High Schools: high school students do not attend

MulchFest 2018
Don’t just recycle, treecycle! The NYC Department of Sanitation and GreeNYC are once again urging New Yorkers to participate in Mulchfest, the annual recycling of holiday trees into wood chips that will nourish trees and plants all over the city. Last year, over 26,000 trees were recycled through MulchFest!

Want to chip in? Just drop off your tree at a designated chipping location on January 6 or 7 between 10am to 2pm. Your tree will be chipped right away– and you can even bring home your very own bag of mulch. Staten Island’s designated chipping locations are Clove Lakes Park, Conference House Park, Tompkinsville Park, and Midland Beach (parking lot #6 on Father Capodanno and Graham Boulevard). You can also bring the tree to select drop-off locations (no chipping) from December 31 to January 7. Staten Island’s drop-off only locations are Father Macris Park, Silver Lake Tennis House, Tappen Park, Willowbrook Park, and Wolfe’s Pond Park. In addition, Sanitation will also be conducting special curbside collections for mulching and recycling of Christmas trees from January 2 through January 13. Click here for more information.

Free Anti-Bully Workshops
For anyone who has ever been a victim of bullying, it helps to know that you aren’t alone. The anti-bullying organization Play It Forward NY offers free monthly workshops for kids and teens who have been bullied or teased where they will be able to share their experiences in a safe environment and meet others who have had similar experiences. Parents are welcome to join and meet with other parents. The meetings are held every month on both the North Shore and South Shore of Staten Island. January’s workshops will be held Tuesday January 16, at Projectivity (51 Broad Street) and on Wednesday, January 17 at Rossville AME Zion (584 Bloomingdale Road). Both will be held from 4pm to 6pm. For more information contact Debra Santulli-Barone at 646-765-6531. Be sure to check our calendar at for each month’s upcoming workshop dates.

New School in New Dorp?
Wondering if they’ll ever fill that big empty lot across from New Dorp High School? BP Oddo and City Council Minority Leader Steven Matteo recently announced it will likely be home to a much-needed new elementary school. The New York City School Construction Authority (SCA) is currently negotiating the purchase of space along the western side of 450 New Dorp Lane to construct a new elementary school and alleviate area overcrowding. The site was formerly A&P and Frank’s Nursery but has been vacant for many years.

Oddo and Matteo said, “We have had this unutilized property sitting on New Dorp Lane for a long time that has, frankly, become an eyesore. At the same time, we need school seats on the East Shore. We connected the dots and put the Department of Education and SCA in touch with the property owner, and we’ve been working towards securing a deal to purchase it for a new school. While we are obviously aware of the traffic implications of a new school in this corridor, we believe traffic would be less than it previously was when the property was utilized, and it would certainly be less than possible new commercial uses on the site. In addition, if this deal comes to fruition we will work with SCA to mitigate traffic as much as practicable, including situating the school so that buses queue on the site and not in the street. The fact is this site will not sit vacant forever, and we hope that its end use is one that will provide the maximum benefit to the community.”

How do you spell awesome? Eighth grader Cristina Diaz of Our Lady Help of Christians School snagged her second win in a row at the annual Catholic School Staten Island Spelling Bee last month! Congratulations to Cristina, who correctly spelled the word “macrocosm” for the victory. Congrats to runners-up Nicholas Simeone of St. Joseph Hill Academy and Jonathan Lustig of St. Patrick’s School for their impressive performances as well. Approximately 30 students from 22 schools competed in the annual spelling bee, which took place December 13 at St. Christopher School.

Catholic Schools Week 2018

National Catholic Schools Week is the annual celebration of Catholic education in the United States. This year’s annual celebration is set for January 28 – February 3. The new theme for 2018 is “Catholic Schools: Learn. Serve. Lead. Succeed.” The event is typically observed through Masses, open houses and other activities for students, families, parishioners, and community members. Each day offers a new celebratory theme within the parish, community, students, nation, vocation, staff, and family. Participants are welcome to share their celebrations via social media using the hashtag #CSW18. Click here to learn more.

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