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State Commissioner Of Education Visits Pocantico Hills

State Commissioner of Education MaryEllen Elia visits a Pocantico Hills kindergarten class.
State Commissioner of Education MaryEllen Elia visits a Pocantico Hills kindergarten class. Photo Credit: Contributed

POCANTICO HILLS, N.Y. -- Pocantico Hills received a special visitor on Monday.

State Education Commissioner MaryEllen Elia visited the school, along with Senior Deputy Commissioner Jhone Ebert. They were joined by Southern Westchester BOCES District Superintendent Harold Coles and Deputy Superintendent Jackie O’Donnell

Several middle school students greeted and served as “ambassadors” of the school to the visitors. The students presented gifts that represented their school and shared their feelings about their experience as learners at Pocantico Hills. They were offered advice and suggestions on programs here they believe could serve as models for schools throughout the state.

“Our district is delighted to have been selected a destination on the commissioner’s tour of our region,” said Pocantico Hills Superintendent Carol Conklin-Spillane. “It was a wonderful opportunity for our students and teachers to share their experiences implementing new standards and highlight select accomplishments."

The group toured the school, making stops in the kindergarten classrooms to join reading and writing centers, followed by the students singing“You Can Try Everything.”

The tour ended in the STEM room with the eighth graders in the Innovation and Design class. The students shared their 3-D models, project journals, and PowerPoint presentations and explained some of their inventions, which seek solutions to everyday problems.

Before leaving, the officials were given replicas of the Freedom Tower that students created using the 3D printer, and also plants that had been grown in the school garden.

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