Weekly Update from the Office of the Superintendent
Volume 2, Issue 12 (October 22, 2021)
Student Artist Reception

On Tuesday, we celebrated nine talented student artists, their art teachers, and our Board of Education at a very special event held each year during NYS School Board Recognition Week. The annual Student Artist Reception and Board of Education Appreciation Night gives us the opportunity to recognize the outstanding work of our art teachers and students, the importance of art education, and the tireless efforts of our school board members who devote countless hours to the betterment of the District.

Congratulations to the following students as well as their families and art teachers who have guided, supported and inspired them through their artistic and creative journey:

  • Shea Kibrick, Edison Elementary; Teacher – Wendy Yiengst
  • Fiona Wright, Franklin Elementary; Teacher – Elaine Korczykowski
  • Benjamin Utzig, Holmes Elementary; Teacher – Jen Leone
  • Harper Dabolt, Hoover Elementary; Teacher – Jennifer Lynch
  • Julia Miller, Lindbergh Elementary; Teacher – Lavinia Kirdani (retired)
  • Shaan Li Hartigan, Franklin Middle; Teacher – Gustavo Glorioso
  • Zoey Dettbarn, currently at Kenmore West, representing Hoover Middle; Teacher – Gina McCartney
  • Amanda Sansone, Kenmore East High School; Teacher – Matthew Sagurney
  • Lucenzo Deeb, Kenmore West High School; Teacher – Amy Veltri

The talent on display that evening was astounding. Art teachers from across the district selected one student artist from each school to be recognized at this year’s reception. The selected artwork, created during the 2020-21 school year, was framed and put on display in the Community Room at the Kenmore Middle School Building. This artwork will continue to be displayed in prominent locations such as throughout our Administration Building and Kenmore Mercy Hospital for years to come. The artwork by two students, Shea and Amanda, was selected to be duplicated, framed, and presented to each Board of Education member as an annual token of gratitude for their service.

A special thank you goes out to District Art Coordinator Denise Carr, who collected and prepared the student artwork for reproduction and display, and Gina Santa Maria, District Clerk and Assistant to the Superintendent, who does an outstanding job each year organizing this event.
From left, Joseph Kfoury, teacher aide Karen Burr, Caiden Fuller, teacher Kristen Coley, teacher aide Karen Alvarez, Jordan Cannarozzo, Isabella Urso, nurse Shawna Pryor, TaMyah Tubbins, Makaya Morris, and Isabella Masiello (missing from photo: Anna Alfearie, teacher aide Marina Guirguis and Deborah O’Neil.
147 Cafe

As part of the 147 Cafe, students in Kristen Coley's "Team 9" class at Hoover Middle School have been preparing delicious soups for staff to purchase. The students help prepare ingredients, cook the soup, serve customers, and process the transactions, just like they would in a real-life cafe. The activity provides students with real-life workplace experience and the opportunity to develop a multitude of skill sets while also raising money to support educational opportunities throughout the school year. Mrs. Coley does a wonderful job providing her students with such opportunities for authentic learning that align with our continuing focus on workforce readiness.

Testing Update

Proximal and surveillance testing began last week in partnership with the Erie County Department of Health (ECDOH). As a reminder, surveillance testing is being carried out in each school with 10% of participating students tested on a weekly basis while proximal testing is being carried out in classrooms with a positive case result. Testing is 100% voluntary and only students whose families have provided consent will be tested. ECDOH has prepared a video detailing how families can register through both ECDOH and Quadrant Biosciences to sign up (both sign-up forms must be completed). You can access the form here:

Screening testing, which is a New York State requirement, began this week, taking place on Tuesday and Wednesday at four locations in the District. We have partnered with USA Medical and Adecco Medical to provide this service for staff who are not vaccinated or whose vaccination status is not known, as well as for vaccinated staff who choose to opt in for weekly testing. We sincerely appreciate the patience and cooperation of our participating staff as we work to improve this process and make it as efficient as possible.

Breakfast With the Board: Community Forums

At last week’s Board of Education meeting, Board members scheduled two community forums which will take place Saturday, December 4 and Saturday, April 30 beginning at 9 a.m. All members of the Ken-Ton School District community are welcome and invited to attend. These forums will take place at the Kenmore Middle School Building, 155 Delaware Road, in the Community Room. Guests are encouraged to come early so as to not miss part of the discussion. The forum is designed to provide parents, residents, staff, and any other members of the school district community a chance to ask questions or discuss topics of their choosing.
Every year, school districts throughout New York State celebrate School Board Recognition Week the third week in October, to recognize the efforts and service of those who choose to serve on boards of education. Our Board of Education consists of five elected individuals who represent the governing oversight of our District: Board President Matthew Chimera, Board Vice President Dr. Thomas Reigstad, Trustee Lesley Battaglia, Trustee Jennifer Morrow, and Trustee Todd Marquardt.

These are not paid positions. They volunteer their time in service to the students, families and staff, devoting countless hours to the betterment of our District. Each Board Member serves on several different committees which play a vital role in the District. They also collaborate with other school boards through the Erie County Association of School Boards (ECASB) as advocates throughout our region. Behind the scenes, Board Members support the work of our students and staff, learn about educational issues, and stay up-to-date on everything that is going on in the District as well as current events that could impact school operations. They do all this so they can make the best possible decisions on behalf of our school district community.

We are extremely fortunate in Ken-Ton to have such dedicated, supportive individuals serving on our Board of Education. They truly are the unsung heroes of the District. Please join me in taking a moment to recognize the outstanding work of our Board Members. If you see them out in the community, thank them for their service.
Note: The next edition of the Ken-Ton Weekly Connection will be published on Friday, November 12.
Thank you for reviewing this information. As always, we remain Ken-Ton Proud, Ken-Ton Strong, and Ken-Ton Moving Forward!

For previous editions of the Ken-Ton Weekly Connection, visit www.ktufsd.org/connection