Ready, set, go!

UC, WNY public schools to open Thursday

The Rondon siblings, Daniel, Kayla, and Rene, cannot wait to start school. The three of them study at Thomas A. Edison School in Union City.
Kayla, 7, who will be in first grade, says she likes to get good grades. She also believes that this year, she may finally get a nickname like her siblings have.
“I don’t have one and my brothers do,” she said.
The three were dancing on Park Avenue last week, taking advantage of one of the last days off before school starts again on Thursday, Sept. 8.
The public schools open in both Union City and West New York on that date. Kids and educators interviewed in both towns shared what they were looking forward to.
Rene Rondon, 8, is about to start second grade.
“I love learning,” he said, “but I don’t like time tables.”

“We are ready to go.” – John Fauta, superintendent of schools
Daniel, who is 6, will start kindergarten.
Brian Morales, a 12-year- old from Union City, was riding his bike on his way to the public library to get a book he needs to read before school starts. “It doesn’t matter which book I get as long as it is more than 100 pages,” he said. He will start seventh grade at Union Hill Middle School. His family is from Bogotá, Colombia, and he speaks both English and Spanish at home. He says he loves to read but doesn’t like when he has to write long essays.

New programs for West New York schools

“We are ready to go,” said West New York’s Superintendent of Schools John Fauta. “We are bringing back the athletic program that was taken away due to budgetary cuts.” In cooperation with the town of West New York, several schools will be open after hours to offer volleyball, basketball, soccer, baseball, cheerleading, and even chess and cooking classes.
“They can have someplace to go in the evening,” Fauta said, noting that the program can help kids get off the streets.
During the fall, the schools offering the athletic programs will be No. 1, 4 and 5. Mr. Fauta is hoping to add the programs to No. 2 soon and No. 3 in January 2011, when that school will have a new facility.

Sept. 11 curriculum

In time for the Sept. 11 10-year-anniversary, West New York Schools will incorporate the “9/11 Curriculum.” The program will educate the children about what happened on the day of the attacks.
Schools will also continue to have the Saturday Academy program to help children who are struggling with subjects like math and reading. This initiative is also useful for those students who want to prepare for their exams and those looking to raise their grades.
According to Fauta, more than 500 children have been participating in this program.
The Santana siblings, Yesica and Jose, are also ready to go back to school. Yesica is 15 and will be in ninth grade at Memorial High School in West New York. Her family is from the Dominican Republic and she speaks mostly in Spanish. Her favorite class is English because “she is trying hard to learn it,” she said.
Whenever she struggles with certain words, her brother Jose helps her. Jose is a10-yeard-old who will begin fourth grade at West New York Public School No. 5. “I have lots of friends that I want to see,” he said. He is also looking forward to the sandwiches they give him at school.
“I don’t like when they give me so much homework” said Emilia Maria, a 6-year-old who will start first grade at West New York Public School No. 2. She is excited to see her friends, read new books, and go to English class.
“Maybe if I get good grades I can get a dog and I will call her Princess,” she said.

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