Oak Knoll School

August 21, 2017 
Back to School

Dear Oak Knoll Parents,

Welcome back to what we are once again calling our BEST year yet! As summer (and bed times) begin to wind down, I would like to invite you back on the knoll for another year of engaging curriculum, sweet friendships and exciting learning experiences for our students. If you are joining us for the first time, welcome to an awesome school with an amazing community. I am confident that you will quickly feel at home. For those of you returning, it may seem as though we just had our best year yet last school year, however our staff is committed to continuous improvement so it wouldn't be very "Oak Knoll" of us to leave it at that!

We have four new-to-Oak Knoll teachers joining the Oak Knoll Staff , who all bring incredible skill, awesome experience, and infectious spirit! Please join me in welcoming these amazing individuals:
  • Ms. Dehne joins our Kindergarten team, sharing a class with Mrs. Lopez. Ms. Dehne has been teaching in our district since 1995, with eight years experience in Kindergarten, as well as several years in the other primary grades. Ms.Dehne's enthusiasm for teaching and willingness to connect with parents is above and beyond. We are lucky to have Ms.Dehne.
  • Ms. Ziff has been a dedicated Spanish Immersion teacher for fourteen years and will join Oak Knoll as our Spanish specialist teacher. Ms. Ziff's passion and skills to our ever growing World Language program is just what Oak Knoll needed. She will be teaching some grade levels Spanish this year, with plans to expand next year. Ms.Ziff is passionate about teaching Spanish and we are confident our students will love being in her class.
  • Mrs. Kaufman joins our Special Education team as our Inclusion Specialist and a Learning Center teacher who will work closely with Ms. Atkinson. This is Mrs. Kaufman's fifth year in our district. She has been a valued paraeducator and preschool teacher, and her background is as a Developmental Specialist. We are excited to have her join our team.
  • Ms. Snyder will be teaching 4-5 orchestra, band and our K-2 violin program. Ms.Snyder is new to teaching in a public school, however she has over a decade of experience with youth orchestras, teaching music in various private schools- including violin to young children, and instructing private music lessons. Ms. Snyder is also a gifted musician who plays professionally.
We have more exciting news! Oak Knoll is now a Common Sense Certified School: Digital Citizenship , an honor that recognizes our efforts in teaching digital literacy and citizenship to our students. Hats off to our teachers who continue to be committed to teaching our students how to think critically, behave safely and participate responsibly. We encourage you to explore Common Sense Media , as it is a great parent resource as well.

As we excitedly jump into the school year we remain grounded in our mission: Every student an exemplary scholar, a valued friend and a courageous citizen . Our goals, energy and resources will be focused on what we value. Our intentionality around our mission ensures that our students engage in a dynamic education and understand what it means to approach learning with a growth mindset, friendship with acts of compassion, and diversity with an open-mind.

There is something so invigorating about the start of a new school year. It's the excitement of our students, the refreshed spirit of our staff, and the ongoing support of our parent community that brings me so much energy as a principal. I look forward to seeing all the smiling faces, bright and early on August 24th- the first day of our best year yet!


Kristen Gracia
Principal, Oak Knoll School

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