Welcome fall! It seems the warm summer days have given way to chilly evenings and foggy mornings. Our school year is off and running! What a tremendous opening we had this year. Our sports teams are enjoying much success on the field and in the gymnasium, and the classrooms are buzzing with teaching, questions and the excitement of a new school year.
Perhaps the biggest change to the BG District is our ongoing Capital Project. Work over the summer included new roofing on all three school buildings, new drainage, walkways, handicap accessibility, parking and new playgrounds at both of the elementary buildings. Students, staff and community members seemed most impressed with the speed at which the grass was put down in front of the buildings. Work will be ongoing until the fall of 2020. Look for future updates in upcoming issues of the Blue and White.
This year’s theme for the district is “Mental Health, Social/Emotional Wellness and establishing strong relationships to combat ACES.” What are ACES? ACES stands for “adverse childhood experiences.” Some of our students have experienced situations that could be viewed as traumatic. Childhood experiences, both positive and negative, have a tremendous impact on lifelong health. As such, early experiences are an important issue. Surveys show that most people in the U.S. have at least one ACE, and that people with four ACEs— including living with an alcoholic parent, racism, bullying, witnessing violence outside the home, physical abuse, and losing a parent to divorce — have a huge risk of adult onset of chronic health problems. Toxic stress caused by ACEs damages the function and structure of kids’ developing brains, which in effect, then changes a student’s ability to cope, learn and function in life and in a school setting. ACEs are common…nearly two-thirds (64%) of adults have at least one. People have an ACE score of 0 to 10. Each type of trauma counts as one, no matter how many times it occurs. All staff members will be trained to recognize those students that might be struggling and lacking the necessary coping strategies to navigate through this stress. Continued information on ACES will occur in upcoming newsletters.
Part of the district’s focus on Mental Health will be our new relationship with Chenango County Mental Health. We will be able to offer students and families services 4 days a week. BG will continue working with Lourdes Hospital Mental Health for a second year.
Calling all Veterans…. Our third annual Veterans Day breakfast will be Friday, November 9th at 8:00 a.m. in the Greenlawn Elementary School cafeteria. Last year we were proud to serve over 50 veterans and hope to increase that number this year. Please invite all veterans and have them RSVP Sue Weibel at 967-6321.
I would like to invite all of you to email, stop in or call me during the year. I welcome your ideas, questions and concerns. We truly are a school community that thrives on the investment of all. Have an outstanding school year!
Timothy R. Ryan
Superintendent of Schools