Principal's Monthly Update
Principal's Monthly Message
Posted on 12/02/2019
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Mary K. Ferreri, Principal


Orchard Elementary

Ridgewood Public Schools


Good Afternoon Orchard School Families!

I hope that you all enjoyed a wonderful break with your family and friends.  Here at Orchard, we are excited to welcome in 2020 with all the promise that a new year brings! 

This January, we have plenty of opportunities for families to come and be a part of Orchard School.  Mark your calendars for the following:

  • Friday, January 3:  HSA sponsored Gaga Games at Gagasphere, Waldwick, 4:00 PM

  • Thursday, January 9:  Long Range Planning Team Meeting, 7:30 PM

  • Thursday, January 16:  HSA Meeting, 9:15 AM; Parent Media Night (K-2), 7:30 PM

  • Friday, January 17:  Bingo Night, 6:30 PM

  • Thursday, January 23 and Friday January 24:  Wizards Game, 7 PM, RHS Gym

  • Tuesday, January 27:  Winter Concert Grades 4&5, 9 AM

  • Thursday, January 30:  Parent Media Night (3-5), 7:30 PM




Long Range Planning Team:

Our first Long Range Planning Team Meeting was held on November 14th.  At this meeting, we discussed possible future projects at Orchard School, with a specific focus on how any of our auction proceeds may support our goals.  The following topics were considered/discussed:

  • Flexible Classroom Supports:  sound amplification systems (FM systems); flexible seating options for students

  • Outside Recess Enhancements:  distance markers/signs for track; flooring for Gaga pit

  • Additional Ideas:  completion of landscaping; outdoor mural idea

An annotated agenda from our 11/14 meeting is included for reference here.  Please consider joining us for our next meeting on January 9 at 7:30 PM - all are welcome!



Choose to Be Nice at Orchard School

As you know, we are a proud Choose to Be Nice School!  Each month, our teachers work with students on a different character trait.  This month, we are exploring the theme of Teamwork as we read I’m Not Just a Scribble.  We will be celebrating our work with this topic at our CBA on January 16. Additionally, we will run a “No Homework Night” on January 16.  Please consider using the time to play a game as a family or to encourage a family conversation about a time you worked together with a team.



Upcoming HSA Meeting:  

Our January HSA meeting is a daytime meeting, at 9:15 on January 16.  We will now be sharing our meetings online for those who cannot attend in person!  You can watch the meeting live on our website or use that link to view archived meetings (our first tape was November).   The full year of meeting dates are listed on our website. We hope to see you there - in person, or online! 


Orchard Family Media Nights


This month, please mark your calendars for two parent nights where we will present our media and technology curriculum. These K-2 and 3-5 specific nights will be an opportunity for you to learn more about what your child experiences here at school, what lessons we explore with them, and what technology they are exposed to.  The two nights are:


  • Thursday, January 16, 7:30 PM:  K-2 focus

  • Thursday, January 30, 7:30 PM:  3-5 focus


Our final meeting will be Thursday, April 30th.  Please consider joining us at our next media night!



As with every monthly update, we need reminders about our procedures and policies here at Orchard.  Please read below on four items of note:

  • All visitors must have their driver’s license scanned for admittance to Orchard School.

  • Forgotten student items/completed forms/homework cannot be dropped off during the school day.  This is a district procedure that supports our security measures and promotes good habits for students.  

  • There are no dogs - or any pets, for that matter - allowed on Orchard School property.  While it might be tempting to bring Fido for pickup, it is against school rules and a town ordinance.  Please leave all pets at home!

  • Drop Off/Pick Up:  It is imperative that we follow these rules for everyone’s safety.  The Ridgewood Police Department has also been ticketing cars during drop off and pick up.  

    • Please remember to pull all the way up if using the drop off lane in the morning.  Wait in that line and do not pull out of the line once your child has exited. When you are moving through the lot, at all times, drive slowly!

    • Additionally, at pick up time, please do not double park and remember that we do not have a pick up and go area - the red fire zone is just that!  Do not pull up into the red zone for pickup.  

    • Finally, remember - and tell all caregivers - the assigned spot for the HSA winner is assigned!  Please do not park there. Thank you for your cooperation in keeping our students safe!

  • Link and follow our Google Calendar for HSA events!  Go to this link and click on the +Google Calendar in the right bottom corner.  

  • Lunch Ordering:  Just some reminders for ordering lunch through Village Fresh.  All orders are placed online.  Orders must be in by 8:00 AM, otherwise, they will not be delivered on that day. Get your orders in!  Thank you!

Please review the list of dates below for upcoming events at our school.  Have a wonderful December!



Mrs. Ferreri



Upcoming events:

January 9:  Long Range Planning Team Meeting, 7:30 PM

January 10:  Talent Show Meeting, 3 PM - Multi Purpose Room

January 16:  Spirit Day; CTBN CBA; HSA Meeting 9:15 AM; K-2 Media Night 7:30 PM

January 17:  Bingo Night, 6:30 PM

January 20:  No School - Martin Luther King, Jr. Observance

January 23:  Wizards Game, 7 PM, RHS Gym

January 24:  Wizards Game, 7 PM, RHS Gym

January 28:  Winter Concert Grades 4&5, 9 AM

January 30:  3-5 Media Night 7:30 PM