The SchoolGram is the newsletter of the Kenmore-Town of Tonawanda  Union Free School District. Beginning with the 2015-16 school year, the SchoolGram will be published monthly and presented in e-newsletter format to make it more convenient for readers and easier to access on computers and mobile devices.  Find past editions on the web at The budget edition of the SchoolGram will still be delivered to households  by mail in late April or early May.

October 30, 2015
The 2015-16 school year is off to a great start! I hope everyone is enjoying the beautiful fall season! Consolidation progress continues! Our kindergarten and sixth-grade students who would have attended Roosevelt, Hamilton or Kenmore Middle, as well as the students who faced unique consolidation-related changes, along with the 2013 closure of Jefferson Elementary, had a smooth and seamless transition to their new schools. The same success is anticipated when our consolidation takes full effect in September 2016!

Many questions have been communicated involving various aspects of the consolidation transition, particularly the placement of eighth graders in the high schools and fifth graders in the middle schools. A new and comprehensive FAQ has been posted on our transition site at This helpful document will address many of the questions. Know that an intensive planning stage is ongoing involving many stakeholders. Updates will continue to be posted as information becomes finalized. Have a consolidation question that is not posted? Please email to have your question included on the FAQ!

A consolidation transition update each month will be included in the SchoolGram. Please be sure to check back each month or add your email address to the SchoolGram mailing list! Thank you for your support during this important transition.

Dawn F. Mirand, Superintendent of Schools
Happy Autumn! October has been a special month as it has brought about some excellent opportunities for the Board to interact directly with our students. We are very grateful to be invited to these events as they are a healthy reminder of who we are here to represent. The never-ending support for our students from parents and other family members, teachers, staff and administration has been magnificent! It is heartwarming to see so many adults investing their energy and donating their time toward the continued happiness and development of the children of our district (even after a long day of work!).
This leading by example has had immeasurable trickle down benefits which have become part of the culture here in Ken-Ton. Our students themselves are active ambassadors within our own community contributing greatly to the quality of our neighborhoods. I am grateful the District has found outlets such as Facebook, Twitter and the SchoolGram to celebrate these worthwhile endeavors. By sharing their time with others, our students have personally invested themselves in making this place a home where people take care of each other.
Dr. Jill O'Malley, Board of Education President
A new and comprehensive Frequently Asked Questions has been posted to the District Scenario I consolidation transition site at . It can also be found under the "Transition" tab in the main navigation bar of the District website at . The FAQ will be updated as new information becomes finalized. Questions will be marked as "Updated" or "New" as new information is added.
Innovative Electric Violinist Performs With Orchestras

Emmy-award winning electric violinist and composer Mark Wood, a founding member of the Trans-Siberian Orchestra, joined with orchestra students from all 12 Ken-Ton schools to introduce them to a brand new style of string instrumentation culminating in an Oct. 24 concert. Click here to read the story.
Students Unite Against Bullying for Unity Day

Students across the U.S. and the Kenmore-Town of Tonawanda UFSD celebrated Unity Day on Wednesday, October 21 and National Bullying Prevention Month by wearing orange and participating in all kinds of activities to support a message of acceptance, kindness and respect for all.  Click here to read the story .
2015 Inductees Into Kenmore West Athletic Hall of Fame Are Honored
New members of the Kenmore West High School Athletic Hall of Fame, selected by the school's Hall of Fame Selection Committee, were honored at an induction ceremony and the Kenmore West Homecoming on Oct. 17. Click here for the list.
'Back to the Roots' on Sustainability & Healthy Eating

With the help of a Beta fish named Eddie and his self-cleaning, food-producing fish tank, teachers and cafeteria staff are going "back to the roots" with creative ways to teach students about topics such as sustainability, ecosystems, aquaponics, and healthy eating.  Click here to read the story.
School Raises Money for Susan G. Komen Foundation

In memory of Camille Carrato, a long-time Ken-Ton teacher, Robin Hall at Lindbergh Elementary once again spearheaded a school-wide fundraiser for the Susan G. Komen foundation with students and staff going pink in support of breast cancer treatment and research. Click here to read the story.
Lindbergh Prepares for World's First Elementary Performance of "James and the Giant Peach Jr."
Students and staff at Lindbergh Elementary are preparing for the world's first elementary school performance of "James and the Giant Peach Jr." Performances will take place Nov. 19 and 20 at 7 p.m. and Nov. 21 at 2 p.m. at Lindbergh Elementary School, located at 184 Irving Terrace, Tonawanda. Click here to read the story.
Kenmore West High School Fall Play is November 5-7

The Kenmore West High School fall play, the comedy "You Can't Take It With You," will take place on Thursday, Nov. 5 through Saturday, Nov. 7 beginning at 7:30 p.m. in the high school auditorium, located at 33 Highland Parkway, Kenmore. Tickets will be $7 at the door.
Class Kicks Off Year's Theme of 'Making a Difference'
In September, Lindbergh Elementary School teacher Wendy Cummins and students in her fourth-grade class raised $160 for the Make-a-Wish Foundation to kick of the year-long theme of "Making a Difference" in the lives of others.  Click here for the photo .
Record-Setting Astronaut, Alumnus Visits Ken-West
Edward Gibson, a graduate of Kenmore High School who shared the record for most time in space as a member of the Skylab IV mission from Nov. 16, 1973 to Feb. 8, 1974, paid a special visit to Kenmore West High School to speak with students about his experiences.  Click here to read the story .
FMS Students Raise $2K for Juvenile Diabetes
Franklin Middle School students set a goal of raising $1,000 through their recent Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation Walk for the Cure at Adams Field. One student ended up raising that entire amount on his own with a school-wide total of $2,071.  Click here to read the story .
NHS Members Help With Habitat for Humanity Home
Members of the Kenmore East High School National Honor Society dug for a sump pump, painted, and performed other essential tasks to help a Habitat for Humanity crew ready a home for a family on Niagara Street in Buffalo.  Click here for the photo .
Band Members Host German Students for Jazz Festival
Students from Germany traveled all the way to Western New York to join Ken-East jazz band students for two days of jazz events that included concerts, music clinics with some of the biggest names in the Buffalo jazz community, and recording sessions.  Click here to read the story .
Staff Raise Money for Breast Cancer Treatment
Holmes Elementary faculty and staff found different ways to raise money and awareness for breast cancer treatment and research leading up to Oct. 17 when they joined other Ken-Ton staff for the American Cancer Society Making Strides for Breast Cancer Walk at Canalside.  Click here to read the story .
Franklin Elementary School Hosts Parent Night for New K-3 Literacy Framework
Franklin Elementary School hosted a Parent Night on Oct. 27 to introduce parents to a new K-3 literacy framework that is now in place at Lindbergh, Franklin and Hoover Elementary Schools. The new framework was piloted from March to June 2015 at Franklin and Hoover Elementary for Grades K-2 with extraordinary results; in just three months, the percentage of students reading proficient and above increased from 33% to 68% at the two schools. Click here to read the story .
Ken-Ton Assistant Principal Michael Haggerty publishes first novel:

Ken-Ton embraces new methods of electronic communication:
Ken-Ton teams play to support breast cancer treatment and research:
Feature on Lindbergh's Susan G. Komen foundation fundraiser:

More on Mark Wood's visit to Ken-Ton:
  • Halloween celebrations
  • Kenmore East & Kenmore West playoff updates
  • Hoover Elementary School's efforts to combat bullying recognized by UB Alberti Center for Bullying Abuse Prevention
  • Video from Mark Wood's rehearsal with Kenmore East and Kenmore West orchestra students
  • First National Anthem student performance to open Board of Education meetings
  • Kenmore Middle School PTA celebrates start of the year with Back to School Bash
  • Celebrating Johnny Appleseed's birthday
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Kenmore-Town of Tonawanda Union Free School District