Smith School Newsletter
October 2020
October 2020 Events

10/01 15 Minute Early Dismissal
10/8 PTO Meeting, 7 p.m.
10/9 Remote Learning Day
10/14 Smith Intermediate Picture Day
10/30 Remote Learning Day
News from The Principal
Child on the playground.
Dear Families:

Thank you for your support as we have navigated through the first few weeks of learning. Overall, our students seemed to have settled into daily routines. We appreciate your assistance with our new protocols for health and safety; as well as your assistance in transitioning your child back into expectations for learning, whether it be in-person or remotely. 

Our first practice all-remote learning day was held on September 25. We have additional days planned for October 9 and October 30. Remote learning days will mirror the daily in-person schedule. Our teachers are working hard to make sure that students are prepared in the event that we must return to all-remote learning. Likewise, our current all-remote learners follow a regular 
school day schedule. Thank you for your at-home support with remote learning and for your patience as we encounter unexpected technology glitches.


Regardless whether your child is an in-person or remote learner, strong attendance is a must. Our physical doors open daily for students at 8:30 a.m. Attendance is taken at 9 a.m. Remote learners must be logged onto the computer and ready to go by 9 a.m. in order to be marked present. An automated call goes out for all students who are not present (in-person or online).

Early Dismissal October 1
Reminder: Students will be dismissed 15 minutes early on Thursday, October 1, 2020. Grade 3 walkers will be dismissed at 2:45 p.m., grade 4 walkers at 2:50 p.m., and bus students as buses arrive at approximately 3 p.m. 

REV Theatre Company
Actor on stage
The REV Theatre Co. (formerly the Merry-Go-Round Youth Theatre) will be a virtual experience for the 2020-21 school year.

Students will meet with an actor online to ask questions and learn about being an actor. They will watch the play online. Additionally, students will participate in an online Theatre Career Workshop.

This year's plays are:
Grade 3: For Carmen in San Sebastian (Performance Information)
Grade 4: The Keeper's Voice (Performance Information)
Smith Intermediate Picture Day
School picture day is scheduled for October 14, 2020. Remote learners will have an opportunity to have their photos taken at school on October 14 beginning at 6 p.m. Please watch for additional information. 

This year Isaf Merkur will be handling school photos for the district. 

To order pictures go online to and enter our school code: 53623ZA.


Student birthdays are announced in the morning during our all-school announcements. Please note that due to COVID restrictions, we are not able to share class snacks, birthday cupcakes, etc. Thank you for your cooperation.
PTO News
Smith PTO is currently seeking a vice president. If you are interested in learning more about this responsibility, please call the school and we will put you in touch with our president, Maddie Reeners.

Harvest Day
This year, PTO will purchase a fall craft for each student to make. Crafts will also be provided to remote learners. More information to follow.

Box Top Collection
Box Top Collection will be on-going throughout the year. The program has moved to an online format. Instead of cutting out your box tops, you simply need to scan your grocery receipt. Please see the flyer for additional information.
A few reminders to help us during arrival and dismissal times:

  • If you wish to pick up your child at dismissal, please adhere to the parking regulations on Wheeler Ave. Please cross Wheeler Ave. with the assistance of our crossing guard, Mr. Byrnes.
  • Please adhere to parking regulations on school property and in the surrounding neighborhood.
  • A reminder that our bus circle is the driveway closest to the building. This area is designated by the double yellow line on the sidewalk. Please do not enter or park in the bus circle during arrival/dismissal times.
  • Additionally, please use the sidewalks and designated crossing areas.
  • Please be certain that your child has a consistent daily dismissal plan in place. If you need to alter that plan, please send a note to your child’s teacher.
Nurse News

All 3rd graders and any 4th graders new to the Cortland School District, are required to have a physical examination. If your child has already had one and you have sent a copy to the nurse, you are all set. If your child needs a physical, please make an appointment to get one, then have it faxed to the nurse at (607)-758-4189. You should have received a form regarding physicals, if you prefer a school physical, please check the box on the form and return it to the nurse. School physicals are scheduled every Tuesday morning. Any questions, feel free to call the nurse at (607)-758-4184.

  • Call the nurse's office if your child is going to be absent or tardy.
  • Send in a written note or Email me when your child returns.
  • Keep the nurse informed of any phone number changes or health concerns.
  • Check your child's hair daily for any signs of lice/nits.
  • Pack a change of clothes for unexpected accidents and spills.
  • If your child needs medication in school, get a Dr. order and bring in the medication.

Please note: All children who are sent home must have a COVID test and a doctor's note clearing them to return.
red apples
Message from the Social Worker
Zoe Walters

During these challenging times, the mental health of both students and adults are often impacted by the challenging changes to our daily life and routine. Concerns about our health, child care, and employment can be incredibly stressful and cause stress/anxiety that can often impact the entire family. If you feel that your child or family is in need of mental health counseling, please contact me to discuss the options available in our school and within our community. I am also a resource to help connect families to other supports in our community such as food pantries, parenting support groups, DSS assistance, etc. 

During the 2020-21 school year, Smith Intermediate will continue participating in the Positivity Project, our district’s character education program. Student’s will continue to learn about weekly character traits during class, and families are encouraged to engage in these important conversations at home as well. At you will find that there is a new section in the resource tab, titled P2 For Families. This resource will help to assist parents in effectively engaging their children in discussion about the importance of character strengths and positive relationships. If you have any questions about the Positivity Project or need assistance in accessing parent resources, please reach out to me. 

CAPCO Snack Pack Program
CAPCO is offering a limited number of family referrals to it’s School Snack Pack Program. This program provides each child in the home healthy snacks to be consumed throughout the week. Bags will go home weekly with in-person learners and will be picked up by an adult, for on-line learners. Please contact me if you are interested or have any questions at Participating families must meet the free and reduced lunch criteria or similar standards, and qualifying families will be referred until our limited capacity is met. 
Music News

Calling all Musicians! The Cortland Schools Music Department has a web store with music department gear. The web store will be open through October 9 and has items in both children's and adult sizes. The link to the web store is right on the ad. Get your orders in now! 

Orchestra News
Our 4th Grade Orchestra students will begin lessons next week. We have been busy prepping instruments and books to go home with our new recruits! 
If you are interested in playing the violin, viola, cello or bass please email Mrs. Capano at or call (607) 768-4180 x3550 to enroll your child. You must be a current 4th grader to participate in string or band lessons. If you signed up last spring in 3rd grade and did not get to start zoom lessons, you are still eligible to participate! Lessons will be 20 minutes every 6 day rotation. In-person and remote students are welcome to join string lessons!! School rentals and materials are available for all Cortland students. Please ask for more information.

Mrs. Allison Capano 
recorder and musical notes
Music and Recorders
Recorders have been part of the 3rd and 4th grade music curriculum for many years in Cortland. They are a great instrument for our students to begin on. This year, because of Covid, we are not allowed to play them in school. Mrs. Wanish generously helped us out and purchased enough instruments so that every 3rd and 4th grader could take one home and use it there this year. 

Our remote classes will be using them regularly as part of their music class times with me. Our “In-Person” students will use them on our remote learning practice days. I’ll also be teaching them a few things from school that they can practice at home. Finally, if we get sent back to remote learning for a longer period of time, all students will be using them regularly during their remote classes. 

Please help your child find a safe place to keep it. They will need to be returned to the school at the end of the school year. I encourage students to spend a little time practicing what they learned on their own each week.

Students have been taught how to make a nice sound with their recorder. If your child is blowing in them to the point that it hurts your ears, you can remind them that they have been taught the “correct” way to blow (very softly) and to make a beautiful sound on them.

Here are 20 reasons why kids SHOULD play a recorder...READ MORE

This month, students are learning that even though we are social distancing, we can still do many things for reading and learning. Everyone is learning more about Google Classroom, including how to use it and how to communicate with it. Students have also been brainstorming how we can be good library students and we have been keeping track of them for students. We are learning how to navigate the library catalog to find books that we want to read, and place holds on them.

Distance learning students are learning how to check out Ebooks and audiobooks through Sora and Overdrive. Students will be able to use a virtual library to check books out to read on their Chromebooks. We are all learning how to adapt to the online environment, and we will be practicing these skills throughout the year!
Other Reminders
Due to COVID restrictions, all visitors must have prior approval from administration or a staff member at least 24 hours before visiting on campus. If approved, appointments will be time-bound. All visitors must wear a face covering while on campus and follow all established entry protocols.

Emergency Information
Please be sure that the school has current information on file for your child - phone numbers for home and work, current emails, and names/phone numbers of emergency contacts.

Our students go out daily for recess. Temperatures are often unpredictable at this time of year. Please be sure your child is dressed appropriately for outdoor play.

Absence or Tardiness from School
Students arriving after 9 a.m. are considered tardy and should report to the office upon arrival.  Please provide us with a written note for your child's tardiness.

Toys, Trading Cards, Electronics, Etc.
Please remember that toys, trading cards and electronics should not be sent to school. They are easily lost and/or misplaced during the school day which often results in angry or hurt feelings. Additionally, these items are often a distraction to valuable learning time. Thank you for your assistance.
Come Drive With Us!

Love to drive and spend time with children? Then this is the job for you! How much driving you do is up to you: regular runs, field trips, and/or sports runs. Paid training is provided. We follow the school schedule, so if school is out of session so are you! There is nothing better than driving around the beautiful Cortland countryside. You can make a positive change in a child’s life by taking them to and from school in the coolest ride around. Call us today at (607)-758-4123. or interested parties can email Jordon Lilley (Transportation Supervisor) at

We Offer Paid Training!
Minimum Requirement is NYS Drivers License!
Public Library

Lunch Menu 
Get Social With Us @CECSD_Smith
 Stay tuned for our newsletter next month!